Pants on Fire

September 10, 2017:

The Hawkeyes scope out some gangsters and end up with company in the hero department

A Harlem Street

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: None.


Fade In…

It's a beautiful night. If they weren't in the middle of Manhattan, the sky would be brilliant. As it is, there's just that little bit of snap in the air, though it's still warm enough to go with just a long sleeved top.
The Hawks however, are in full kit. Barton's version of said kit is utilitarian, streamlined and practical. Well, if he were truly practical, he'd have a gun instead of a damned bow. He's on the rooftop of a five storey red brick building. He stands with one foot on the ledge.
"From what I can figure, the guys're working out of this building." He's addressing Kate as he points down and across the street to a vacant bodega. "These guys have been a huge pain in my ass since I bought Everest Heights. I can't believe they're stooping to harassing kids and little old ladies. Normally even thugs have more class than that. My guess is there's some new asshole trying to be a tough guy."
For the moment, the bodega is quiet, but something about it feels like people have been there recently. There's a lot of life on the street - at least in the day. Right now, the strings of shops are closed and most people are getting ready for bed. There is a Korean restaurant that's still open, with a handful of customers inside.

*

Streamlined and practical are also good adjectives for Kate "The Other Hawkeye" Bishop's chosen gear which includes fitted pants of thick black material meant for hustling about on rooftops, and a black leather jacket that zips up into a high collar. Her black hair has been brushed back, her bangs free across her brow. Because she's one of those masked varities, she dons a domino mask with the skin around her eyes kohled black. The silhouette of a hawk has been embroidered on the back of the jacket in blue, though half of it is obscured by her quiver. She gives her own bow a light squeeze as she flexes her fist around the grip.

She observes the bodega as Clint gives her the low-down. "Found a spot that didn't have a jerk on the corner, and said 'I see an opportunity'?" She edges a bit closer along the ledge, peeking over the side. "Hey, when we're done here, we should totally get some food. I've never tried Korean before."

*

It is a nice night and Cole could be getting drunk in some den of corruption or something. Except he needs money to spend in such places, so he went to a 'job interview' instead. A simple bodyguard job that is probably not going to be simple or they wouldn't be looking for a gunslinger.

But he smiled, nodded and took the money. Fortunately the job won't start until tomorrow evening, so maybe he has time for some drinking, after all. He leaves the Koran restaurant where he had the meeting and steps out. The tall blonde man is wearing a short grey coat over a black t-shirt and brown cargo pants. Unremarkable clothes which are useful to conceal his guns. Not that he expected trouble but… yeah, he expected trouble.

*

Rin slips out of the restaurant looking like any other phone absorbed twenty four year old. She's dressed in black and has a thick jacket over her shoulders, and a slim backpack over her shoulders. Her fingers are quickly typing on the small screen and she idly walks down the road toward a very sleek looking motorycle. She pauses for a miemnt, leaning aginst the walk, trying to finish her text before she drives. Idly she's looking toward the bodega, as if something there has taken her interest.

*

"It's pretty darned tasty. But not everywhere does it right." And Clint has been to Korea, because of course he has. His job involves a lot of globetrotting. Usually not for fun reasons though. "The kimchi'll make you…"
He shuts his mouth when there's a light that flicks on in the bodega. The windows are covered in paper which makes the faded 'for lease' sign that much more visible. Someone must have come in from around back.

Then, a few moments later, a busted 90s sedan pulls up. A guy in a red tracksuit gets out, followed by a pair of darker dressed goons. The door of the bodega is pushed open from inside.
This is all quite suspicious in and of itself. What's even stranger is that a woman with a coat over her hands gets out of the car too.

"Rita?" says Clint from his spot on the roof. "Shit, Kate, that's one of my tenants."

*

Kate is eagerly waiting to hear the effects of the kimchi when Clint is sidetracked. Her brilliant blue eyes drop low toward the street, noticing the flickering light and then she frowns at the sight of the car and its goons. She spares the world some comment about what does a clown car and a goon car have in common when she detects Clint's concern for the woman that is being hauled out of the car. She narrows her eyes. "What do they have her for?" AS she sweeps the street, she spots the woman who has just so happened to look in the direction of the bodega. "We got a witness," Kate warns, because she knows what goons like to do when they find out they've been spotted by someone.

*

When Cole thinks 'trouble' he means one of the several groups of people (and 'people' might be a generous label for some of those) that would like him dead. Decades on the run have made him observant and wary.

So he sees the guy in the red tracksuit. Trouble. The goons. More trouble.

But it is not his trouble, so that is fine. Only when he see he woman with the coat he snorts and shifts his stance, sneaking closer to the building wall to have a better look. So much for drinking.

*

Well this look absolutely legit. Rin watches as the older model car pull up to the bodega and furrows her brows. She continues to feign interest in her phone, but slowly she starts to move closer. It's that woman that really has Rin worried, she doesn't appear to want to be in this situation, or maybe it was just a terrible ride in the car, it's hard to tell. At the very least, these people have her interest. Carefully she reaches into her jacket to check for her gun, then grabs a small screen that she attaches to the side of her face and over her eye. It looks like she's back on the clock tonight.

*

"Well, their end goal is to intimidate my tenants away so I'm forced to sell, so I'm going to go out on a limb and say she isn't coming over to rewatch Game of Thrones." Clint may not be superhuman, but his eyesight is pretty amazing. Normally you'd need binoculars to see what he's able to take in. "Coat over the hands. Textbook 'hiding the handcuffs' trick. These guys like the classics." He makes a face at the guy in the tracksuit. "…and 'was tacky when it just came out.'"

Rita looks…well, she doesn't look unhappy so much as pissed off. She's giving the stink eye to the men, one of whom leads her by the shoulder. It doesn't take Clint's eyes to see the awkward buldges of weapons in their coats.
Up on the rooftop, Clint is spinning through his custom arrows and gnawing on his bottom lip. What to use to not put Rita at risk?
In the meantime, the goons shove her forward towards the entrance.

*

"Well, if it means seeing Jon Snow's naked butt again…" Then Kate subsides and gives Clint a sharp and agreeable nod of her chin. Then she reaches to hook her bow into its clasp so she can easily start to get down from the roof. "Alright, so. You call the shots here… I'll follow your lead. Unless I disagree with your tactics. Then all bets are off." She leans down over from the ledge, starting to map her way to street level with a slight narrowing of her eyes. She takes note of the other people on the street, but she seems to only think Red Track Suit and his goons are the biggest threat.

*

Cole sighs. Just the one time he hoped to be wrong. But not, it is a 'standard' kidnapping ongoing. Which means he should call the police and forget about it. Instead he pulls his mask from the coat pocket and covers his face, immediately going into night vision mode and scanning the area.

That is how he spots Kate on the top of the building. More trouble?

He was considering a frontal approach on the kidnappers, and just shot them all in the head, but with people at his back it is time to scratch plan A. Instead he seeks some cover and spies on the thugs.

*

Rin may be brash at times, but she knows when she's out gunned and several of these men with poor fashion choice. Still, that woman obviously doesn't want to be there, so she slips off into the alley to stay out of sight for just a moment. She activates another augment that she has and fades from view. Slowly she follows the men, trying to sneak inside of the bodega unseen, which means she has to time her entrence with the door swinging. Thankfully she's trained for this. For now she's just getting a head count, and looking for a way to get the woman out of there safely.

*

"I'm telling you, Katie, he used a butt double. Not all of us are graced with such an ample back bumper." But then Clint's back to focusing on the situation. Or rather, he never stopped focusing. He's a good multitasker with the quips and the professionalism at the same time.
His flicking finger finally lands on an arrow. He draws back and fires, sending a line across to the adjacent rooftop. Someone might see, but just as long as the goons don't, they're golden. He collapses his bow and stows it, then hooks to the line using a contraption on his wrist. The line is compatable with Kate's gear as well.
Silently, quickly, but not completely inconspicuously, he ends up against the building on the far side. He clambers up onto the roof of the building that hosts the bodega and lands softly.

By now, the goons, tracksuit guy and Rita are all inside. The sedan drives away. Whoever is doing this didn't think to post lookouts, which confirms Clint's hypothesis that this is a low guy on the totem trying to make a move.
The goons aren't being cautious, so Rin can slip in past the door. The bodega itself is a decent size, though the shelves are empty save a few wayward signs. There's a thin layer of dust over everything, though it's been disturbed in several places. The place has been used, but not tidied.
One of the dark-suited goons lays a big hand on Rita's shoulder and pushes her down into the chair. Tracksuit guy drags over a chair to sit across from her. "Now where were we? Oh yeah. You're gonna get out of Barton's building. I don't care your excuse, but you'll get a commission for every other tenant who walks away. Maybe bedbugs, maybe accuse him of something. I don't give a fuck."

*

"You know nothing, Clint Barton," Kate replies in sharp, mock-English tones. Then she steps back, giving Clint the space to fire the arrow. She then follows him, counting to fifteen before she launches behind him along the cord. She delicately lands her bootheels into the wall of the building before dropping down onto the ground just behind Clint. Her eyes cut left and right before she follows after Hawkeye. She slides in beside him, peeking just beyond his shoulder to get sights on what's going on near the car. When it drives away, she tries to sight the license plate to no avail. Then she gives Clint a nudge that is just bordering on a full shove.

*

Since Cole is not invisible he needs to wait for the sedan to leave and the archer pair to cross over through a rope-like contraption. Uh, neat. He has to get one of those, might be useful for climbing up buildings.

Instead he will use the door and follow the goons to their lair. Possibly lock-picking the door along the way. He has one of his handguns out, too. Just in case. Hopefully he will not run over the invisible Rin.

*

Rin quietly moves around the room, finding a spot behind Rita to keep her in sight. Seeing their ease in the room, she figures they've been here before so this must be someone they come often. Still there are too many in here for her to start shooting, and she really doesn't feel like spending time in the med bay over a sudden impluse to play damsel savior.

She realxes a second and lets her eyes scan over the room, noting all of the devices that are hiding in their pockets. She needs to cause a bit of choas, so she focuses on them, getting them to load all of their heavy apps, over loading their tiny little processors and looking for that little exploit that is going to cause those delicate batteries to overheat. If she's lucky enough, they'll start buring holes in their pockets.

*

Clint looks back over his shoulders and narrows his eyes at Kate's jostle. "Patience, grasshopper," he murmurs.

Cole gets lucky. The door isn't locked. But he'll have to be very careful after entering because theres's only a small shelf blocking him from view of the goons.
"Screw you, Rico! I'm not forcing good people out of affordable homes just so you can bulldoze the building!" The coat's off. It's not cuffs on her wrists, but zip ties. She tries to stand but is shoved back down by tracksuit guy, who is presumably Rico.
"See, I guess you just need more persuading." One of the goons cracks his knuckles. He pauses, shifts uncomfortably, sniffs the air. Then he starts to dance around, furiously reaching for his phoen to try and pull it out.
"Hey, hey, what's the matter…" begins Rico. But then his phone too starts to turn into a little fire brick. One by one, the three goons and Rico are all trying to pull their searing phones out of their pockets.

It's about then that the archers enter. He's standing there, bow in hand, staring at one guy cradling his burnt hand with a smoking phone on the floor, another guy furiously slapping his leg to put out a fire, while another's pants are literally aflame.
"Note 7, huh? I heard those things are death traps." And then he takes full advantage of the distraction, moving forward to slam his bow into the jaw of the nearest guy. Then he's reaching for Rita's hand.

"What the fuck!" she says to him. "Did you do this?"

"No, but I wish I did." He's trying very hard not to laugh. He pulls out a knife and cuts the zip ties on her wrists.

*

"I don't know what that is, dung beetle," the second Hawkeye quips back. Then she peeks up at the sound of shouting from within the bodega. "I like this Rita. She deserves some serious pie." Kate follows after Clint, drawing out a simple combat arrow and notching it back into her bow. She moves quick, ducked low in her stance. She is bringing up her bow almost immediately as they burst into the bodega, and she loosens an arrow at the first obvious goon. It hits him right in the knee, and she's not going for another arrow, but using her bow with the same blunt force as Clint. She slams it into the same goon's jaw when he comes at her in a limp.

*

Cole watches the beatdown fairly amused. Looks like for once the good guys actually come close to match the number the bad. This is a first time for him. He doesn't recognize the archers, he has been too long away from America, but it doesn't matter much.

As soon as they burst in and draw the attention of the kidnappers, Grifter jumps from behind the shelf to tackle one of the thugs and smash his head against the floor. "Not a private party, I hope," he says as greeting.

*

"That was my doing Agent Barton." Rin says as she turns off the cloaking device and appears in the room. The SHIELD agent quickly reaches for a collaspable baton at her belt, since this is not at all the time to complicate things with a gun. With a quick snap it opens, and she aims low at the nearest goon, hoping to get him on his knees, and if that doesn't work, she goes right for the gut. "So nice of you to drop in." She says dryly.

*

"You motherf….aaaah, Barton!" Rico doesn't even get to curse properly because his goons are all knocked out and he's clutching his burnt leg. Somewhere in all the chaos, he found a bottle of water and managed to get the phone off him, but the polyester has melted and fused to his skin. It's obvious he's in a hell of a lot of pain.

"My mother is fine, thank you. I'll pass along your best wishes," Clint quips back to him. He'd punch the guy, but Rico is pretty distracted by searing leg pain. "Good thing you like that suit so much. Part of it's never coming off." And then Clint turns his attention back to Rita. He murmurs a few words to her to see if she's all right.
"Katie, can you hold down the fort here? Call this in and keep an eye on these guys. I'm going to get Rita home. Tell me when the cops need a statement."
He blinks, blinkblinks at the two new arrivals to the scene. "Ooooo…kay, I will definitely need some debriefing later. Agent," this to Rin. He might have forgotten her name. "Thanks for the assist. Soo, please work with Bishop here to secure the scene." He nods towards Kate. "And uh, maybe question that guy." He nods towards Cole, eyebrows arching high. "Mmmkay? Kay, good." And then he's taking Rita by the arm to lead her out of the chaos.

As she's led out, Rita murmurs, "Remind me to never buy a Samsung."

*

"You got it," Kate replies back to Clint before she glances toward the goons, Red Track Suit, and then the two others. She quirks a small smile for the latter of those present, but then she glances slightly after Clint as he goes to help Rita. She assists on getting a couple pair of zipties around the wrists of the two nearest goons. The other Hawkeye starts to chuckle. "Let's find a new phone though." She eyes that Note 7 before she pops out of her iPhone. She upnods to the other two. "Uh. Hey there. You two ever had Korean food before?" She dials the closest police department, tucking the phone against her ear.

*

Cole stands smoothly and nods to Rin. "Nice vanishing trick. Agent, uh? Are you SHIELD? This seems too low key for SHIELD," he observes.

He glances at Clint and uh huhs a the 'question that guy' bit. "This guy is Grifter doing my good deed of the year. That is my story and I am on my way for an important appointment with… uh, Whiskey and Tequila. So yeah. Already had my Korean dinner. Nice to meet you and all that." He sneaks out.

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