The Power and Wonder of Flight

September 05, 2015:

Heroes have assembled and done battle against robotic insects. Now it's the aftermath.

Gotham District #3

Gotham District #3 — Gotham City - Gotham
A temporary room for your use!

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: None.


Fade In…

Caitlin rubs the back of her neck, wincing and looking a bit sheepishly up at the third story of a building. The area's in utter bedlam from what looks like some kind of rampaging insectoid killbots, the remains of which are scattered around the area. In true Hollywood fashion, a broke fire hydrant spews a column of water into the air, and car alarms whoop and whine in the post-battle haze.

"I didn't /realize/ it was a Maserati," she tells Carol, remorse in her tone. "I can't tell cars apart. I just needed something heavy to throw. Can you, um…" she gestures vaguely with one hand, making a fluttering motion skywards. Wearing her battle-worn signature leotard and calf-height purple boots, she's dusty and covered in grime. "I can get it down, but not without ruining it more. I mean, it's probably salvageable."

She looks from Carol to the smashed front end of the car, then back again.

"Right?"


"Can I? Sure." Captain Marvel offers, with a nod to Caitlin. "Not sure how salvageable." she admits, but she floats upwards as asked, lifting up to the third floor of the downscale hotel. It's completely against physics, but she comes up under the car, lifting it while nothing but her own will is lifting her, and she flies backwards, tugging until she gets the car free of obstructions, then floats down and settles its bent frame on the street. She grimaces a bit at the oil and other fluids running out from under the car and across her hands and arms. "All done, Big Red."


Up, up high in the sky, it's a meteorite, it's a comet, it's a red and white object rocketing ever closer, leaving behind it a visible con trail. It's moving fast, at least mach four, if not mach five, across the horizon, it's hard for anyone with normal vision to make out quite what it is other then fast. The red blur swerving between the tops of buildings at this breakneck speed, as it makes its decent towards the ground.

The object turns out to be none other then Rocket Red hero of the people, defender of Justice, Freedom, and the soviet way of life. His suit colored bright red, and white, with a fairly clear inspiration from the classic age of soviet firepower. Out of each foot of the suit a plume of fire shoots, rockets propelling the figure faster and faster towards the ground. On the helmet of the almost eight foot tall suit a bright yellow visor in the shape of a Y hides the identity of the user within, as he stops just a few feet above the ground hovering in place over what seems to have been a battle finished. He looks around silently scanning the area, and in Russian begins to speak. (Ah, seems I am late, at least I think I am) The voice highly robotic, and calm, as he floats a bit higher from the ground, moving over to plug back up the hole shooting water up into the sky.


Caitlin goggles a bit at Carol's effortless defiance of the laws of nature. Granted, Caitlin doesn't understand the first thing about /her/ strength, but there's a big mental hurdle between squatting a few dozen tons, and /flying/. And, also, Captain Marvel, which is kind of a big deal.

Mentally, Caitlin reminds herself not to squee. Must be cool.

"Thanks, Cap," she says, beaming at Carol when the blonde lands. Though Caitlin's got most of six inches and close to two hundred pounds on Carol, there's a clear deference to the more established superheroine in her posture. She looks at the car and winces. Even with her limited knowledge of automobiles, it'd be obvious to an Amish that the car is a loss. "I had to grab a freaking sports car," she mutters, mostly to herself.

Caitlin hears the supersonic crack of Rocket Red's approach, but by the time it catches up to the person, he's already hovering overhead. She snaps her head around wildly to pin down the source of the sound and with a vaguely alarmed expression, steps back a half-pace and brings her fists up near her abdomen in an aborted boxing stance.

"Hey, that's… um. That one guy. Red… something," Caitlin says, snapping her fingers several times. The Force is strong with this fangirl, scanning her encyclopedic knowledge of all things superheroic. "One of the Rocket Reds, it was like… this Soviet thing?" she hazards, glancing sidelong at Carol. "He's old school. Like, /way/ old school. Cold War era. Friendly, though," she says, watching him plug up the leaking fire hydrant.


Captain Marvel smiles and nods to the towering redhead, apparently quite happy to help out retrieving the ruined vehicle. "Yeah. That happens. I always reach for panel vans, myself. Force of habit." she explains. But that supersonic approach causes her head to whip around and her costume helmet to materialize around her head. She was getting ready to launch after that speeder, when instead he's hovering down to join them.

"Yep, that's him. Fourth one, if I recall correctly. The Russian accent always tickled my fancy for some reason." She doesn't talk a lot about her time in Intelligence, and she's not about to start now. "Not to be too cruel, comrade. I know you were feeling late. But hypersonic flight this close to a civilian population center is generally a very bad idea." Trust the jet jockey to bring up the rules of air safety. "Sorry you missed the robotic insect fun. We'll save you some, next time." 'Cause there's ALWAYS a next time.


"Sorry officer I was late for my daughter's dance recital, and I didn't see the speed limit posted." Rocket jokes rather calmly floating back over towards the car after he's properly stopped the water flow. His voice is friendly if not robotic and heavily accented. He shuts his engines right off once he's over there falling about three feet before hitting the ground so his rockets don't burn the ground bellow. "I tried to go in high, besides, how could I go and miss all of the fun?" The suit walking the rest of the way over to the horrifically damaged car, and holding out both hands. "If I heard right this is yours then comrade?"


Caitlin stares at Carol's glittering transformation. "That. Is. So. Cool," she exhales. She glances down at her leotard, which is beyond salvage, and plucks at a bust seam under her left arm with a grimace. "It's the Irish accents that get me. Every time," she mutters at Carol, sotto voce.

"What? Who? Me?" she says, blinking at jabbing a thumb at her chest when Rocket addresses her. "Hell no, I /wish/ it was mine. Had been mine. I drive a lousy VW beetle." It's hard to imagine Caitlin fitting inside of such a tiny car, and it is, in fact, as awkward as it sounds. "I mean, I'm glad it's not mine, because I wouldn't have thrown it into the wall."

"…that action being, uh, strictly necessary at the time," she hastens to add, vaguely recollecting something about deniability she'd heard from Jennifer Walters. She cocks a hip out and rests her fist on it, looking at Rocket with unabashed curiousity. "She's got a point about the sound thing, though. You can blow out windows flying at this altitude over the city; none of the tri-cities are hurricane-proof," she observes. "At best, tropical storms, but that's like, only, seventy miles an hour, and hurricane proofing is around a hundred and twenty," she says, chattering along, "and you were way over the speed of sound by at least three or four seconds ahead of your pressure wave, 'cause I counted, and your armor weighs like, what, six hundred pounds? so that's… um…" she realizes she's gone a bit vacant-eyed while mentally calculating the thrust needed to propel Rocket IV along, and clears her throat and looks around at everything but the two other heros.

"It's just, like Captain Marvel said, kinda… y'know, not a great idea."

Caitlin kicks a severed robot head complete with missing mandible a few yards.

Awkward Caitlin is awkward.


"Closer to twelve-hundred. His armor is old-school." Carol corrects, gently, rather pleased and amused in ways she really should not be that Caitlin is such the science geekette that she's actually doing all those force ratio calculations in her head. That's so awesome! The jet jockey in her can't help but love it.

"The car was a necessary casualty of the conflict. Big Red here had to throw it at one of the fliers to make sure it didn't get away. It didn't." Captain Marvel really does sound pretty proud of the other woman's efforts, despite the destruction caused.

"Still, I am glad the call went out and that help did arrive. Better than being ignored." Captain Marvel comments, eyeing Caitlin again. "If you need to jog off and change, we can hold the fort a few minutes." She really should call up Reed and get the girl something more suitable. But Carol keeps forgetting.


"Eh five-hundred seventy thousand eight hundred sixty four point eighty two kilos, but you are close comrade." Rocket red slowly running his hand across the surface of the car, thinking to himself. "I will admit to having thrown the stone on this one though." Hands uncurling slightly as he lifts up what's left of the hood and begins floating up the various parts of the cars engine. Hovering them around as he completely disassembles it, or rather what's left of it, the parts left floating in mid air. "Well I can't do much about the body, but this engine, this I can work with."


Fairchild glances at Carol, blinking in confusion, then looks down at herself. She blanches, then turns a steaming shade of red not dissimilar to her hair color. "I… yeah. Wow, thanks," she mutters gratefully, trying to resist the urge to hunch and tug at her leotard. She's hardly indecent, but still. She hustles off with a quick step and misses Red's little mechanic show, grabbing a bag from where she'd slung it underneath a bus stop bench, and pulls out an old military-surplus jumpsuit. She steps into it quickly and zips it up almost to her chin, then walks back to Carol and Red, rolling the sleeves up quickly as she goes. It must be a men's large suit, but it just barely fits her, though it's as fashionable as a burlap sack.

"That's a neat trick," she tells Rocket. "But I think you should probably leave the engine alone. The owner probably wants it for the insurance to see. The cops yelled at me when I tried to clean up this one time and accidentally demolished a bulldozer."

She looks at Carol, then hunches bit. "What," she says, a bit needlessly defensive. "It /was/ an accident."


"Of cours eit was." Captain Marvel offers, along with a smile at Caitlin. "Mmm. That looks almost like an early era flight suit." Which brings out Carol's nostalgic side, because her heroes - and heroines - were the pilots who used to wear those.

Carol had not realized Rocket Red could do the telekinetic trick with the car parts, so she gapes at that show. But she' nods in agreement to Caitlin's comment about the insurance companies. "Pretty sure she's right. If it were my plane that was smashed up, I'd be irked because of the NTSB investigation gone south, so it's probably the same principle."


Rocket Red shifts his hands reassembling the engine right back how he found it, setting it right back into place. "I will admit I do not think I will be fully understanding all of your American laws, for some time." The hood shut right back how he had found it. He pauses turning back around hands down at his sides, as he looks to the damage. "So much worry over little slips of paper, when you should be helping each-other towards a brighter tomorrow." A slight pause. "Though your television shows are incredible."


"Heck, I don't live here, and I don't get them. I've been sued, like, five times," Caitlin complains. "Mostly when I'm trying to help people. South Park is, like, the best thing ever, though," she agrees. "And I need my trash TV fix sometimes," she concedes. "But, all I get is Netflix and whatever I can pull down off the interwebs. I don't have a TV," she says, grimacing. She looks at Carol, processing her words. "You still have a plane?" she says, sounding a bit surprised.


"Hey, even lawyers don't get our laws. They design them that way on purpose." Captain Marvel ammends quite sharply. "Though I confess, I've never had much of a taste for television. Too busy myself, I suppose." Carol's an action junkie; sitting still watching something is anathema for her.

"Of course I still have a plane. Two of my own, and I'm still in the Reserves, and I do special request test piloting too. I love to fly the new toys, and if they go poof I won't buy it nearly as easily as someone squishier." Carol responds to Caitlin with a beaming smile like a kid on Christmas morning.


"I am still remembering first time I was flying Yak-2," Rocket red letting out a light sigh, as he pats the car one last time walking away from it, lost in memories. "Ah, to be above the clouds the world beneath but a distant memory far from home with nothing but wood and steel to keep you traveling at three hundred miles per hour." He pauses. "And a plane will never try yo sue you."


Caitlin almost starts to look abashed at that statement about televison, but then Carol starts in on the flying stuff, and her smile is infectious; Caitlin smiles back sunnily, resisting the urge to bounce. "Ohmigosh, really? Can… can we go flying sometime?" she says, looking a bit hesitant. "I don't wanna bug at you or anything, I know you're, like SUPER busy, and there's… military… stuff," she says, stumbling a bit, "but wow, yeah, that'd be fun. I've only been flying once, and I only threw up on Supergirl a /little/ bit, and then I remembered my dramamine."

She looks at Rocket, frowning. "Wood? They haven't made planes out of wood since… like… um." She draws a blank and looks at Carol, then lifts her thick shoulders in a shrug. "Since way, way before my time, anyway," she amends, looking to Rocket.

"…you don't have any wooden planes, right?" she asks Carol, warily. "I wouldn't mind going flying, but somehow I doubt the Wright brothers ever built anything that would fit me."


"He's right. A plane will never sue you. Fall out of the sky like an aluminum brick, but never sue you. Much easier to deal with." Captain Marvel offers, smiling wistfully. Oh, how the pilot in Carol LOVES to talk planes.

"Yeah, wooden planes were quite the thing. I found the Spruce Goose pretty damned impressive, even if they decided not to go for the idea. It was still pretty damned innovative as an idea to solve the problem. It was more his competitors that ruined his rep than anything." Yes. Carol is a flight history buff.

"Fit you? Oh, Wilbur and Orville built one that could /fit/ you. Barely. But support your mass? Sorry, not a chance. But no, none of mine are wood. A friend of mine has a wonderful biplane, but I thought we'd take the F-4. I'd love to take you up in the P-51, but she's single-seat. Ay time you want to go flying with me, you'll want to take the dramamine early. I usually make poor Kara look like a slow-poke; it's the jet jockey in me. She's plenty fast, but I fly the envelope's edge." Yes. Carol is excited. Can you tell?


"Started flying back in the late thirties." Rocket admits, looking over to the other two, though with his accent it's hard to tell if it's the late 1930's or his late thirties. He's mostly silent just nodding his helmeted head along no expression visible, but underneath said helmet he's definitely enjoying all of the plane talk. "If you're not pushing it into the red then what is the point right?"


Caitlin blinks and looks over her shoulder. "Hey! My ass isn't /that/ big," she complains mishearing Carol. She scowls prettily and shifts her hips the other way, hands resting on her waistline in an utterly ineffective gesture of assertion that looks equally insincere. She has a pretty frown, and it's a bit defensive but hardly looks angry. "I thought they made planes with bigger seats these days."

"Why are you pushing it into the red? Isn't that bad for the plane?" she asks, looking from Red to Carol, her engineer's curiousity overcoming her. "It's like the revs on your car, right? That's bad?"


"Your /mass/, not your ass. C'mon, I would never be that crude over an open channel." Carol answers defensively. And yes, she is just that capable of disarming huffiness.

"You push it to the red because nothing else is worth it in stunt or combat piloting. It's about being the best you can be, not just about getting where you want to go. It's about being who and what you want to be. And that's not something you can ever do playing it safe. That's why air combat planes require such constant high levels of maintenance." Which is something a lot of civilians never realize about warplanes. But those who fly them every day are keenly aware of the hundreds, often thousands of man- - and woman - -hours that are required to keep them in tip-top functioning shape despite the punishment they must sustain.


Rocket red slowly nods his head clapping his hands. "I will say even with certain perks the majority of my time was always spent working under the hood." He pauses smiling under his helmet still. "I might have been able to say it better then Russian, but in English? Well I think it will do." Another lighthearted jab from the seven foot tall metal man. "Even with this suit I still spend so much time simply making sure every little detail is in order so that I can push her to the limit. One time I was even breaking mach seven."


Caitlin just sort of stares at Carol with undisguised awe, nodding along without realizing it. "I …. yeah, sure, totally," she murmurs, more captivated by Carol's clarion tones than the specific words. Combined with the blonde's considerable charisma, she probably could have just doubled down with the 'mass' misunderstanding with no ill effect.

Honestly, she could have just told Caitlin she was too heavy for flying in general, and Caitlin would have forgiven her instantly.

Realizing she's fangirling (again), Caitlin blinks and tries to discreetly clear her throat. She fidgets a bit in place, toeing the asphalt with a purple sueded boot, a rather immature bit of body language for the Amazonian redhead.


"I actually enjoy the maintenance on my planes." Carol offers, honestly. "But I don't have to do so full-time. And I have crews for the military planes, easily enough. But I really do enjoy working on them. It makes it that much more rewarding to fly them, knowing I was part of making them ready to fly." Carol smiles, visibly displaying that pride. "Flying hot and fast is an addiction. There's nothing like it." She does not say aloud 'it is even better than sex.' But it likely echoes through the minds of those listening regardless.

"OK. So, I think we're good, here. Red, give me a call when you're free to go flying. We'll put something together. I need to get out of here, I have a meeting in twenty-minutes down in Delaware." Carol offers, with a little salute for Rocket Red. "Fly high. I'll see you both later." And with that, she lifts off, that glow building around her as she prepares to shoot off, staying just below the speed of sound until she reaches one-hundred and fifty yards off-shore, and then rocketing out to multiple-Mach as she streaks southwards, just a second or two after flight clearance came through.

"YEEEEEHAWWWWWWWW!"


Caitlin shakes her head in awe as Carol departs, listening with a silly smile for the supersonic crack as she clears the flight ceiling. "Wow," she comments, glancing to Red Rocket IV. "That's who I wanna be when I grow up," she says with a self-effacing shrug, but plenty of pride in her association with the pilot.

"I guess I should go, too." She shifts her weight, then glances at Rocket with a bit of self-consciousness. "I kinda left my car parked a few blocks over," she explains with a mumble. "So… well, nice meeting you. Maybe next time I'll have my autograph book with me!" she says, brightly. "Or my phone. I broke mine." She shifts her heels a bit, then exhales.

"Again."

And with a tremendous explosion of muscle strength, she leaps up to the top of a sixth-story building with no apparent effort, arms pinwheeling for balance, and then leaps a half-block at a time towards a parking garage a few streets away.


At the same time Rocket red is off into a run, kicking off into a jump his rockets blast right back active, sending him flying high in the sky. This time thankfully he waits till he's above the city to kick back into mach 4 the kaboom that follows thankfully not rattling too many windows. The Red Ruskie rushing rapidly into the rest of his evening.

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