Assassins and Archers

November 03, 2015:

After a contract is taken out on Arrow, Mistral tries to collect.

Star City, Washington

Queen Consolidated - Cybernetic Medicine Division.

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: Triggernometry - Red Dead Redemption Soundtrack


Fade In…

Star City. Queen Consolidated isn't the huge multi-factual monster that Wayne Enterprises in that has fingers in the pies of everyone - or the military conglomerate that Stark is. QC is far more focused on the medicinal side of things. Making and developing new vaccines and treatments - researching diseases and has a fledgling prosthetic department that is focused on the idea of cybernetic replacement limbs. It is a new field for Queen Consolidated and it's borrowing from already existing technologies, which means it's not as heavily defended as say - the main plants and offices would be.

Because of it's lowered guard, it makes it a tempting and easy target for those that would dare to harm such facilities.

Which is why it should be no surprise when a large explosion rocks the interior of the plant, targeting the manufacturing floor. There are dead and wounded employees as smoke comes pouring out of the roof of the plant, fire alarms going off as the local fire department and emergency response is called in.

Oliver Queen, who was back in Star City and enjoying the Washington morning with a cup of name brand coffee hears about the attack through his contacts and frowns. Especially more so when he hears that there are shots being fired upon the responding fire department and emergency tech. Not trying to kill them - someone is purposefully shooting out their hoses and tires to prevent them from putting out the fire.

Mistral displaces once more, swinging her rifle off her shoulder and into her hands as she crouched low in the window of a highrise apartment building which overlooked the site of the attack. She had been moving all day, the actual infiltration was far from difficult, and she had made the /slightest/ effort to minimize the human loss in the detonation, well, save for those scientists and techs who would represent a hefty amount of brain drain to the company when lost. But regardless, it was all very text book to this point, she had harried the police and emergency response for hours, slinging out a snap shot or precise mobility kill on a vehicle here or there, keeping their heads down and rescue efforts stalled as she drew them in to her position. It was a dangerous game of cat and mouse, the mercenary ringing out with several shots to bring the police response in, only for them to kick down the door ons an abandoned observation point each time. She was festidious, leaving nothing but the cleared room in her wake, no firearms or casings could be found.

To be honest, it was probably too easy for Mistral, stashing away her rifles in pre-designated caches near each observation point, ducking away in civilian clothing once the police got close. It was child's play, she wasn't about to put any of the officers down, but she couldn't help but grin sweetly at each harried patrolman she passed while she transited from position to position. And the helicopter that they had called in to track down the incessant sniper? Well, three rounds into the cockpit (the look of terror on the pilot's face was delectable) would be enough to dissuade them from calling in air support.

And that is where she is now, crouched down in a high end rented apartment, rifle rested on knee and the woman far back from the window as she scans the area. She'd done enough, now it was time to sit and await her *actual* query.

Once he realized what was going on, it took almost fifteen minutes for Oliver Queen to get ready and change into his garb as the Green Arrow. It was bad enough that someone was pinning Star City's bravest and finest, but he or she was also causing him to lose millions of dollars. Which may not hurt terribly in the long run, but it's a stinging punch to the financial gut, nonetheless.

It was hearing about the scientists he lost that caused him to frown. They were men and women with families - they wanted to only make a better world - and now that has been cut off. This will not do.

At a position across from the apartment complex, Mistral had set up one of her caches, and left it looking much like one of her nests, including the rifle sticking out, trained on the crowd below.

Descending upon it from a grappling line, Arrow slides in and tries to get the drop on.. a blow up doll with a big pair of painted lips and holes in all the wrong places. "What the hell?" Ollie manages as he quickly realizes the trap for what it is and grabs the edge of the tarp to roll quickly to the side, bringing it with him to give him cover before the inevitable shot rings out towards his position.

Mistral swiveled, an impeccable expression of calm across her features as she leaned back into the wall, 'sitting' on the bed of the apartment with rifle crooked up on her right knee and her left leg straight out. She would sharply flick her sunglasses off, the far-too-expensive-HUD-projecting (and branded!) glasses clattering to the ground as finger moved to trigger and the woman took a soft breath. Building B, fourteenth floor, three windows across… She had sighted it days in advance, because she was nothing if not forward thinking! She would catch the shadow at the very last moment, finger moving, heart resting still at the end of her breath- and squeeze.

Thh-SNAP! CRACK! The bullet would whizz, flying mere inches off of Queen's shoulder and impacting in the far wall of the apartment. Far too close for comfort, but at least he has company in the form of the blow up doll! … And a camera in the far end of the room pointed right at him.

The bullet fires and there's a /flump/ as it hits the tarp and where Arrow may have been. Heavy gun, Ollie realizes. Probably a fifty cal, or a 20 mm rifle. At least that's what he thinks it to be as he feels the wind from it and the impact against the wall. As he turns to look, he's grabbing the doll to drag with him and notices the camera. "What is this? New gameshow? Assassins and Archers?" he asks the camera rhetorically, assuming it has a sound link to the would be sniper. Kicking the tripod over, he takes the doll with him and disappears within the building.

Once inside, he looks around for more cameras before he slips off his cloak - it's not quite chilly enough to make it a difference in the early Washington fall as he slips it over the doll and smirks, muttering to himself. "Not as pretty as me." he comments as he shoves a pole into it's hands to make it look like a bow.

Having it stick up in the window for a moment, he moves it slightly. Here, here, shoot me.

And with that, he's moving off in another direction, heading /upstairs/ towards the roof. He doesn't take the elevator - whoever this sniper is, if it's rigged like this for traps, so is the elevator, and possibly the stairs, which is why he only goes up one flight before he shoves in the bow to forces the elevator door opens.

Leaning in, he checks the shaft, before he fires a grapple arrow skywards and latches it down, using the rope to pull himself upwards.

Mistral would frown somewhat at the question. Cute. she was honestly hoping for more in the way of pained grunting or maybe a scream. But the hunt was on, and really, 'one hit, one kill' would have made this whole little adventure far too easy for her tastes. She would work the bolt back, not once pulling away from the scope as the rifle ejected a spent .338 casing on the bed next to her. While she certainly had access to anti-materiel rifles, she was supposed to ensure that her target lived, and blowing away a very sizable chunk of an individual seemed counter-productive to actually getting her money. In the least, Ollie should be able to recognize she's working with a bolt action rifle, since there hasn't been any follow up shots just yet as she moves to scanning across the building.

Now, Anne wasn't one to idly engage in bouts of arrogance, but she was quite at ease with the situation, she was only fighting an archer after all, and at these ranges? Well, it would have to be a very impressive archer indeed to hit her! So, for now it would be a game, one nominally more entertaining than running the police in cir- And target- Breath- Beat- Pull. Her rifle will crack once more, and this time the shot will find its mark perfectly, tearing away the arm of the blowup doll with absolute ease, only to draw a frown from the sniper as the 'body' refuses to fall naturally. It may well be morbid, but she has experience with telling how someone should react.

She quite literally just fell for the oldest trick in the book.

Once he was on the roof, it was a matter of watching and waiting. It's the oldest sniper game in the book. Waiting. But it's not long of a wait. he spots the muzzle flash and the crack of the rifle. Belinda the Blowup Doll never had a chance as she takes on something even she can't handle and the cloak and doll just deflate like a Harry Potter villain.

Now it's his turn. While he could probably fire a kill shot from here, that's not how he does things. This is one of those times where he really wishes he could, but instead, he decides to deny the sniper the field of vision and the advantage that great big scope offers.

Notching an EMP arrow, he lets it fly towards the sniper's rifle, looking to slam it directly into the large scope of the rifle before following it with a pair of smoke arrows to kick up a screening action.

There's a quick glance to ensure that his actions are buying the fire department the time they desperately need as he keys up his communicator.

"Hey shooter.. shooter shooter shooter.." he taunts quietly. "I can't see you, you can't see me.. how about you do the right thing and surrender before the cops storm the building and show you what happens when you shoot at them."

Mistral would scan furiously, beating up in down in a rhythmic fashion with the rifle as she caught her breath and pulled her finger off the trigger. She had time to curse herself for the fumble later, there was still an active target and one that had just gone and made the game far more interesting. She would move in a rhythmic fashion, finally catching a glint from the roof, she would swivel some more, her muscles becoming tight as she begins to correct on the figure. Breath, beat- /Thhhink!/ her rifle would be pushed to the right, trigger just grazing the type of her finger as she hissed under her breath and rolled off the bed, the two smoke arrows impacting at the foot of the furniture as she turned and caught one final glance of the window.

"Damn." She would mumble to herself, turning her DSR-1 over to inspect it, mustering a slight blink at the rather large dent along the ring of the scope where the arrow had bounced off. She was going to have to take the possible deviations in account, but for now, things had come *very* interesting.

Mistral would also blink at the taunting, the woman doing little more than rolling her eyes upward as she turned on to her back, using the smoke as cover so she can grab her carbine, slinging the weapon across her chest and holding the sniper rifle close before scooting backwards towards the door. It was slow going, but she would finally make it out, and then right on down the hallway in a quick jog. It had become a real shootout then, the mercenary moving for her new nest within the suave apartment complex and tabbing up in her mind just how long it was going to take the police to arrive.

Yet, she could not help but smile as she kicked in the door of an apartment four floors up, sweeping left and right with her carbine before moving for rifle once more. At least it was interesting.

With the rifle momentarily quiet, Arrow finds himself making his own moves, evacuating the rooftop as he fires the last of his grapple lines, catching the window of her apartment complex, using the grapple to slide down and crashes through the window of the room that Mistral was just using to fire from. The shattering of glass and the flump of the man as Arrow rolls and comes into position with his bow to an empty room - and yet another abandoned nest. "Dammit, slippery than an eel." he mutters as he looks at the contents of the abandoned nest since he has a moment - to try to figure out who this may belong to.

"You're not Deadshot, he wouldn't have missed." he comments over the open channel. "Bullseye? Nah, not that good either. Maybe you're a newcome?" he asks the mystery shooter. "Do you have a name yet?"

As he picks at the remains, he picks up one of the carbine shells. Studying it, he realizes how small the caliber truly is.

"Can't handle larger bullets?" he asks. "Maybe working your way up?" he asks. "You know - higher levels - larger bullets? How about.. Misfire. That sounds like a good name for a sniper than can't snipe."

Mistral doesn't even blink, slamming the door shut behind her and taking a knee on the spot as she unslings her rifle and props it up against the wall to her right. She would slide her bag off next, rooting into the backpack and pulling out several items as she starts to make herself comfortable. And by comfortable, one means she traps the doorway, bundling two stun grenades together before working a wire through the rings and then suspending them beside the door. Anyone who comes in is up for a rude surprise, and it seems Mistral isn't taking any chances with this Archer, especially since he's proven himself to be obnoxiously mobile at this point.

And there the buffoon goes speaking again, his words washing over her and offering little reaction as she pushes her hair back with a hand, only to quickly don a tan balaclava which conceals her face save for the opening for her eyes. She once more makes her way towards the window, sidling all the way against the frame on the right to give her co- … Shit. She catches sight of the grapple line just as Mr. Queen throws his last dig her way.

For her part, Mistral *does* answer his question in a way, by keying her communications device and letting the static white noise fill the line for a moment, only to cut it off after several seconds.

"Well, Chatterbox is out as a codename. Misfire it is." Oliver mutters as he gets an earful of squelch feedback and cuts off the communicator for a moment. He can hear the communications of the police department, getting braver now that the shooter is focused on him instead of them, and another helicopter is making it's way towards the roof of the apartment complex to disgorge a SWAT team.

Four floors below her, Ollie steps out into the hallway, arrow drawn back in a ready to fire position as he starts on his own way up the stairs, checking each of the floors as he does so. The game of cat and mouse is far more intimate setting as he works along the floor. "Dammit.. I could be all day at this. And I am missing out on prime time for other things." he says with a frown.

He doesn't have the ability to see through walls - he's no master detective. He is cautious, making his way up towards her door before he kicks in the door two rooms down from her as a woman screams and huddles over her children. "Crap.. sorry, sorry, not here to hurt you!" he promises, holding his hand out to try to calm the young woman.

Which leaves him dangerously open as he has to take his hand off the arrow to gesture for calm.

Several clanks would come from down the hallway, followed by a metallic rolling sound. It seems a certain mercenary down the hall was alerted to Arrow's presence, and she had decided to utilize her little trap in a more offensive manner as two flashbangs clattered towards Oliver's foot. He had a few seconds at most to think fast, though were he to look down the hallway he would catch sight of a shoulder poking out from the room two doors down, and the flashhider of a rifle poking out. It seems someone may be waiting for the boom.

She wasn't a chatterbox, but she was more than willing to make a little noise it seems.

"DOWN!" Oliver yells, turning to the family just as the two flash-bangs go off. His eyes tightly closed, the noise is still obnoxiously loud and he misses the report of the rifle as the bullet slams into him, sending him spiraling around and slumping against the wall. She seems to have hit the center of mass, with the hallway being as small as it is.

Arrow slumps, arms falling to his sides, presumably dead or incapacitated by the shot.

There's several screams from the apartment in the aftermath of the explosion, and there's calls of 'POLICE!' from the floor just above the apartments they are in.

Mistral holds her ground, the woman balancing on the balls of her feet as she pulls the rifle in tight against her shoulder, a small wisp of smoke rising from the barrel as her right hand goes up to her sunglasses and presses the small button along the frame, cutting the recording of her 'kill' as she took several steps backwards. Eyes locked on the archer, and her head only tilting upwards once at the chaos from above. She was dressed quite casually for an assassin, a dark grey 'tactical' windbreaker unzipped about a quarter down, showing off just the collar of her dark blue shirt and a small bit of skin before the balaclava begins. She's wearing a pair of skinny khakis, with a holster buckled to her thigh in which a handgun sits. The rifle was quite a fancy affair, one of those short barreled black carbines one would sooner see in military service than in the hands of some hired gun, but then, she didn't seem exactly normal.

Anne would continue to pace backwards, rifle aimed at her target before her back bumps against the door. She'll keep one hand on the carbine, the other reaching back to snag her last flashbang. She'll tab the handle, push the door with a leg, and without even looking into the stairwell, roll the grenade in.

"Mistral." She finally whispers into her comm, keying it after the earsplitting crack and flash. And then, she's gone, sprinting down the stairs.

Mistral goes for incapacitating shots for SWAT, if she has to! Better to move like water around the rock than shoot the rock in her mind.

As soon as the woman's gone and the other flashbang goes off, one of the children comes out to poke at Ollie. As he reaches for the mask, Ollie grabs his hand, and shakes his head.

It hurt like the devil, but he peels back the layers of kevlar and dragonscale armor that absorbed most of the small caliber round. "I'm good." he says. "Which way did she go?" he asks him.

The child points and Oliver rolls to his feet. As much as he should want to pursue, he knows it's not tactically advantageous. "Pardon me." he says, standing up, making his way through the room and out the window, leaping off the side to grab one of his earlier lines and slides back down to the original building he started off at.

Making his way down to where the camera was set up in the original nest, he picks it up and sees it's still transmitting.

Flashing a rueful smile, he rumbles, "Close, but no cigar, Misfire." With that, he clips off the camera to take with him for possible tracking of the signal as he heads to find his own escape route - he doesn't really want to have a chat with the police at the moment, after all.

Mistral wherever she is, throws her motorcycle helmet.

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