O Come, All Ye Terrorists

December 21, 2017:

GMed by Emma Frost, Pietro and Wanda Maximoff. What was supposed to be a lovely hometown Christmas parade — floats, politicians, the Gotham Snow Beauty Queen, and children's choirs caroling — suffers the usual fate of any festivities that take place in Gotham.



NPCs: None.


Mood Music: None.

Fade In…

It's the sort of small town parade that defies the grime of a big city like Gotham.

Sure, there are some particularly elaborate floats bankrolled by corporations who love to see their names emblazoned on the billowing sides of trailers filled with festive scenes of reindeer or Christmas-bedecked Garfield, or city dance groups, or local big names, but a lot of them belong to local schools. To local charities.

There's probably forty floats expected to be here tonight, all with a winter wonderland theme. The parade route has even been decorated with extra tinsel sculptures on the street lamps, angels and bells, snowflakes and old-fashioned candles.

Alongside the floats, there are plenty of people walking down the road. Local marching bands and color guards, glitter and sequins and metal glistening under the street lamps and shimmering lights from the floats.

There are street vendors, selling cocoa and smote-like confections and roasted nuts, and the sidewalks are packed to the brim.

And all of this, so that people can get a glimpse of Santa at the very end of the parade who's supposed to end up at Town Hall by the end of the night.

She's bouncing giddily up and down, mouth shoved full of gas-toasted marshmallow. "ISN'T THIS GREAT?" asks one Harley Quinn of the night sky, as she spreads her arms wide in the middle of the sidewalk crowd. She bumps more than a few people, earning a nasty glare or two. Quinn pays them absolutely zero mind. "Man," she continues brightly around a bite more of marshmallow. "All these people showin' up for a man in a suit. I mean, really, isn't that all Santa really is? Some fat ol' drunk in a suit?"

There's a pause, and then a look nearly contrite as a kid bursts into tears and she earns a very nasty glare from the boy's mom. She whispers to a stranger beside her, "He was gonna find out someday anyway. I'm doin' him a /favor./"

Among the crowd in rare holiday spirit is a stunning redhead. She's in a velvet green dress, trimmed in white with holly leaves and berries in her hair and a basket on her arm. The basket is full of home made candycanes. With at home peppermint of course. She hands them out to the kids as she passes them among the crowd. She was just about to make it near an energetic blonde but stops to give the kid some candy. "She's just upset because she's been on his naughty list fourteen years in a row." Looking up at Harl, "Pretty sure he isn't a drunk all the time. Just those that have too much Nog and are from the bad part of Burnly."

"I hate this fucking city." Slade mutters under his breath as his head clears the sidewalk having come up from a basement 'business' meeting somewhere along the street. He pauses, eyeing the churning masses letting a slow hiss of breath out between his teeth. He turns to check his reflection in a grimey street side window and reaches up with a gloved hand to wipe a small spot of red from his cheek with his thumb and then looks back at the crowds.

He slings the overstuffed duffel bag over his shoulder and begins to walk, hoping he can out manuver the parade and make it out of the town before something stupid happens. Because Gotham. Something stupid is /always/ happening.

"First," There is a grumble from a young man in a red leather jacket. The faded patches on the arms of the jacket showing the feared symbols of one of the most feared space pirate gangs in the galaxy. Of course here on Terra its just some strange flamey looking symbol that looks /totally/ sweet. Because Starlord would never wear anything less than something totally sweet.

Case in point the low slung dual blaster pistols that he carries hidden under that jacket. I mean they gotta be toys of course. Its prolly just some down on his luck actor. Mad at christmas. Or a cosplayer. Who knows really, this is Gotham.

However he has no bat iconography so that is at least a point in his favor.

"First," He repeats. "Rocket and Groot go out to get a tree. Cut /down/ a tree that is /way/ to big for the house. THEN they want to decorate it!" A pause as he glances at a reasonable passerby. "You would think that a raccoon that can make moon destroying ordenance could string some lights together but no!"

Said passerby nods agreeabily and then shuffles their kids away from the obviously madman.

Or method actor.

I mean same difference really.

As the parade continues onward, it's the City Council next. A band of middle-aged and older men and women, dressed up in their holiday finest. As they sit and wave on chairs covered in white felt, their float bearing the words "Serving YOU", there are little mechanized candy canes that wave back and forth and LED lit gumdrops that border its edge.

One of the members, Carl Gardner, has been more vocal in recent days, coming up in more than one community paper as being responsible for bringing the powered registration debate to Gotham and ardently supporting it. But not just the powered community. The vigilantes. If there's a thing to register the 'other', he has been in front of it with his name emblazoned all over the effort.

He'd even had a few choice things to say about the Snow Beauty, Darla Mueller. Called her a bleeding heart, liberal opportunist for her thinly veiled comments against 'bullies' in the Q&A or the pageant she just finished watching.

Not that you'd know it, watching him wave in the middle of a sea of candy that rocks to the tune of 'Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.' He looks like a proud grandfather, congenial and wise. And every so often, he reaches into the burlap sack on his lap to hurl little flashing ring toys out into the crowd.

"I dunno, Ivy," Harley drawls, curling her arm around the other woman's own. "I ain' never seen one that ain' drunk. I think that's always why he's so red in the pictures, too. Rosy cheeks? Drunk."

The be-pigtailed blonde sways beside the redhead… At least, she does until her head turns sharply as something catches her attention. "CHERRY LACES! They got cherry laces!" And with that, Quinn moves to start dragging her gorgeous companion through the crowd with her in the pursuit of more artificially flavored and colored glory.

Poison Ivy gives Harley a big smiel and offers her a cane, "But Saint Nick isn't the only list to think about is it?" Her eyes track over to the floats and the criminals sitting on it. That's what they all are to her. She smiles as she notices they used the flower that are alive. So she knows just what to do. Reaching out with her power and changing the lettering of 'Serving you' to say 'Seriving US' having a bit of her own fun and vandalism. She hugs Harl and gives her a kiss on the cheeks. "Well I have, just not in Gotham." Ivy has to quick step to keep up with Harl as she is pulled along. She's not as agile as her friend. "Why not try my candy first. It's better, trust me." Her eyes catch something in the crowd, a guy with a coat and a gungs. "Harl?" Nodding to him. "We got a new player?"

"Mr. Pool, I don't think I can go this way. There's a para—"

A gloved finger is all up in the face of the tolerating cab driver that has come to be known by fans as DOPINDER. He watches the gloved finger slide across his lips and then looks over to his occasional employer, friend and love guru: DEADPOOL.

Deadpool takes a moment to wave at everyone reading this. "Hi! Be with you guys uno silento!" Deadpool turns his attention back to Dopinder and resumes his explanation.

"Don't worry about a thing, Dopinder. See, a friend of mine's running this event and I'm pretty sure they won't mind if you drive through the parade. You'll only be killing about… I dunno, a few dozen people?"

"I don't feel comfortable—" Dopinder's interrupted again. This time by a sock puppet of Wolverine.
"He's right, bub. No killing innocent pedestrians. That's what James McAvoy says anyway." Deadpool realizes that his own sock puppet is against him and his ideas. "Ugh. Fiiiine. You two are too good of an influence on me. I'm going to have to find some worse friends."

Wade throws the door open to his cab and climbs out. Meanwhile, Dopinder ties to lean over and holds out his hand for a high five. "Still cool, Mr. Pool?"
"… For now, Dopinder. For now." Deadpool offers him a soft and uncrisp high five. "But we're going to have a serious talk about your violence tolerance before my sequel comes out." Deadpool slams the door and slams a hand on the roof. "Away with you!"

Dopinder rolls off in the PoolCab and leaves the Merc With A Mouth standing… on a corner that's not even near the parade.

"Son of a bitch! COME ON!"

Moments Later…

The bus pulls up to the corner and hisses as the doors are opened to allow Deadpool to climb onto the bus. He stops at the bus driver and starts counting out some change.

Four Minutes (and a Donation) Later…

"Sooooo…" Deadpool's now sitting between a couple of old ladies. "Which one of you Girls are Golden?"

To The Parade!

Deathstroke caught movement out of the corner of his eye and stopped, turning to lean against the edge of a building nonchalantly, the duffle bag swung to rest agains his knees. Yeah. Those plants on the float are moving by themselves. All by themselves. Which in Gotham means one of 2 people, and the second one doesn't have even a hint of humor in his swampy body. Which means Ivy is around. Slade groans, and turns a shoulder back into his march towards freedom. This is why he tries to be home in Kenya during Xmas. Parades aren't so much a thing when it's 85 degrees outside.

In the distance, there is a crack of sound. It's hard to tell what, from so far away. If not for the season, one might think it was distant thunder.

A second later, there is someone standing in the middle of the progressing parade who was not there before. His stance wide, head bowed, he blocks the float bearing the City Council in particular, failing to move even as it grinds closer and closer. The snow around him matches the white of his hair.

"You've built a pretty notable platform premised on taking things from mutants," the young man observes of the councilmembers, his head lifting. The wind whips his silver hair back from his staring blue eyes. "Their rights… their safety… their privacy. Your own constituents. I've been with the mutants who live in Gotham. I have heard their fears. I've seen how little they are regarded."

Pietro lifts his right hand, touching it to the front of the float as it grinds within inches of him. He seems wholly unconcerned about it running him down.

"I am here to ensure you notice them. So… your platforms will vanish. Your chairs will become cages."

He steps forward, into a reality that bends to conform as he speaks. Red light mists off his skin. "You will be silent. And I will have you hear their complaints."

And the source of that red light —

The little wraith of a woman standing at Pietro Maximoff's shoulder. She looks every bit his antithesis in shape — smaller and dusky-skinned — but effusive in that same red glow. Her eyes are pools of light, no iris, no pupil, and from them that screening scarlet light swaths her limbs, terminating where it runs in a building sphere between her two moving hands.

Wanda Maximoff murmurs the shapes of unspoken words, low and silent, a hex building the more Pietro speaks. She crosses sights and stares right down into the fabric of reality, and in turn —

— as he talks, the world changes to obey him.

The City Counsel's platform is no more, no flash of light, no sensory flash of its destruction, but simply no longer there — as if the world forgot its material reality.

Of the councilmembers, their chairs turn on them, twisting up into steel bars to box them into too-small cages: cages meant not for men, but for animals.

Pietro bids silence. That hex erases their mouths from their faces before there can be any screams.

Wanda stares forward, glowing eyes vacant, her hair moving in the ephemeral wind of her ability. "There are some of us whom believe our sanctuary is to hide. They play king of paper castles. What awaits those who cannot go? What awaits those who do not want to leave their homes? We will never be chased away."

Gotham. Taskmaster like Deathstroke 'fucking' hates this city with a passion that burns more than Deadpool long nights of spicy taco tuesdays. The parade itself is a colorful candyland hell in the city that bleeds nightmare on the daily.
Taskmaster is easily buried in the crowd shoulder to shoulder with two casual Gothamites, the skull mask he wears lately more ski with logo upon it because its easier to blend here. A hoodie up and tactical gear underneath. Stay low key until it's time to shine.
Gigs pop up around things like this from time to time when important targets or wealthy fearul people are present. Two of them are popping up on the Unternet currently. He has boredly been flicking from one to the next as if indecisive. Why is this so hard?
Voices carry, female voices that hes familiar with. Red and Blonde. Bubblegum and Cactus. The phone is shoved away at recognition they are anywhere near this which might be a pre-emptive and bad choice.
Thunder? Mutants? New talking that pulls him away from even considering to approach his 'teammates' and instead his attention is now fixed upon Quicksilver in a nimbus of red? "Whats this… " Whats this.. theres colors everywhere… Memory Tagged.
A grin behind mask, Taskmaster's phone lifts up again and aims towards Pietro. Target's face being keyed in on an app and the database starts to seek….

Not only did he have to go out and get all these lights and things, and decorations, and whatever else. He /then/ had to run into a parade. Now Peter Quill doesn't mind parades perticularly. Maybe he's just in a bad mood. Maybe he's hungry. Maybe he's worried about Kitty Pryde and doesn't want to admit that to anyone espicially himself because that would be an important first step in a relationship that he really isn't prepared to take and it terrifies him…


Regardless he regards the crowd with a scowl at least up till Harley shouts and his head cants in that direction. A blink. A grin is directed towards Harley and the fabalous redhead near her. A wide 'heeeeeey ladies' grin. One that might just have come with a finger gun if there wasn't a sudden distraction.

That distraction being some dude suddenly appearing in the middle of everything and spouting off what sounds like a well prepared speach. Then some red light. Then some hot glowing chick. He peers at the parade, the shouts, the screams whiped from their faces. MORE speaches.

"Man, terran Christmas parades are /way/ better than I remember them." He says in appriciation. At least thats his opinion up till he sees the looks of fear and horror on the faces of the croud and he just /sighs/.

"Now I'll never get back home!"

"But I like the cherry laces, Red!" Harley whines, even though she does take the candy cane to start sucking on that dejectedly, watching as the vendor winds his way out of view. Her hangdog expression turns back to Ivy, only to morph into a vague curiosity at her companion's behest. "New player?" she asks, head tilting and then gaze turning in that direction.

But then there's more to catch the out-of-costume clown's pale gaze. "That's… kinda a fancy light show, ain' it? …And a lot of fancy talkin'."

There's a pause, as Harley watches the scene, transfixed. To Taskmaster's question, her head tilts to one side, and then she eloquently remarks, "Uhhhhhhh…" She really doesn't have an answer. Huh.

Meanwhile, on the float in question, there is pandemonium. Before they can say anything at all, they've got no mouths.

As members of the city council are restrained in space never meant for them without mouths, a world of screaming erupts. In meer moments, a fun, family friendly event is a dangerous riptide of people trying to get out of the way. Have you ever seen a tuba player try to cut through a crowd?

You can now. Even as the float behind the councilmen's vehicle crashes behind, the driver having abandoned ship.

Deathstroke cocks his head to the side as he hears the protester stand up and start yammering about mutant rights and his eye narrows. Yup. This is /definately/ not his fight and it's /exactly/ the sort of this that will attract the Bat, or worse, one of the Bosses. Not that he's worried about violence, it's just that no one's /paying/ him for the privledge. That freebie crap is for idiots. So he shoulders his pack higher and puts a little gas in his step, getting distance between him and the inevitable showdown. "I hate this city." he mutters again under his breath as he rounds a corner and disappears into the shadows of an alleyway.

Poison Ivy notes the finger guns from Quill and has to smirk back at him leaning a bit closer to Harl, arching a brow to see his reaction. Then we got people who just got rid of the float that she just redecorated. There's a heavy sigh from the redhead at this mess that is starting. "This will get messy. And loud. Those kids aren't locals." Gotham pride, and all that. She is not sure how she wants to act or step in. She isn't a mutant, she isn't involved in this fight.

When the bus finally stops, there's a party going on. Deadpool slaps high-fives with the other riders as he makes his way off the bus. "And you get a high five! And you get a high five! And you get a high ten!" Deadpool climbs off the bus and the doors close behind him, letting the Sandra Bullock styled bus driver get back on hr route.

Deadpool stands at attention as everything seems to be going down at the parade. "I hate being late." Deadpool pulls out a laptop and logs into Telnet. He's typing away for a little bit and then he's scrolling through the little screen of text on the laptop screen. He looks up and out at those reading along. "Baby Got Backscroll." It seems almost like Deadpool winks even though the eye of that mask doesn't actually close. And then Deadpool's closing the laptop and running off towards the chaos.

The next time anyone sees Deadpool, he's skipping along through the terrified crowd with a bag of popcorn he swiped from a street vendor. He's munching away at the mask on his face as he keeps tossing handfuls of popcorn at his covered mouth. And while it may be interesting that others are running away from the Float of Mouthless Death, Deadpool seems to be skipping happily in that direction.

"Like a virgin! Skippin' for the very first time!" Wade sings along to his own rendition of classic hits while pondering just how long this weird stunt show is going to be. He's here to see /Santa/. And maybe some sexy reindeer.

Unobstructed, unimpeded, Pietro steps in quite close to the man who occupies most of his attention… Carl Gardner. Naturally, he does it at speed, a blurring flash step that has him in the man's face in a millisecond — that blurs him in Taskmaster's attempt to get a read on his face.

He leans down to regard the man in his cage, his right hand bracing against one of the bars.

"Here is my message," he says. The scarlet light reflecting in his eyes strengthens, and Gardner— ceases to exist. Empty space is left in the cage, as the older twin straightens back up and regards the rest.

"These are the things we can do, if we are not happy," he says.

He glances towards his sister. Without preamble, Gardner simply reappears again. Pietro turns his right hand, palm up, in the restored man's direction. "And these are the things we can do, if we are."

He reaches to take his sister by the arm, to lead her away. His gaze picks out someone… moving against the flow of the crowd, towards them, and his grasp closes on her arm with a certain urgency. "We can coexist," he says. "But for that, your cooperation is required…"

"Coc…" More to that. A Christmas Story's father just blurts out of Taskmaster's mask as the blur effect removes option of facial recognition. "Cmon, cmon." The non-answer noise from Harley has him looking towards her and he realizes shes spotted him out of the crowd.
"You know who they are?" A louder question fired not just at her but also Poison Ivy. Names can also be sought out. No point does he stop waving that phone towards them hoping eventually he will pick up on something to tag up, route out and get a number worth his time. Smaller faces pop up. Chump change. Two warrants a personal vendetta but none of these indicated are worth a damn or a 'named' target like Wanda, Pietro, Peter or Wade
Even if he casually sways it over Deadpool or Starlord's general direction. A mark is very well a mark. Though he is fairly certain he has Wade Wilson blocked on EVERYTHING.

A person brushing past him is elbowed roughly aside, its now that hes starting to see what else is actually transpiring, "Gotham… "

And silent, lost into the untapped, running power of her ability, Wanda makes communion with her hex sphere, feeding filaments of red light into its body, whispering words down into it — like some mother of chaos giving form to some small demiurge of broken probability.

As Pietro speaks, Wanda acts. No hesitation. No pause. Whatever is his spoken whim, she seemingly has the power to make reality. To bring forward. Or to make disappear.

Such as the offending councilman. Tilting her head, Wanda twitches both hands, and snuffs them down over the sphere of red light. He disappears. Gone. No life. No trace.

But there is some mercy: or at least a warning. Pietro speaks again, and it brings the light back to Wanda's hands, undoing her prior hex, returning the man back to existence as if nothing happened.

The screams and fleeing of the crowds barely bat her red eyes. They see only Pietro, like the sun in her sky, and obediently lets him take her arm.

"And if not that," she adds. "Your fear will do."

Not local, Ivy says. And Harley Quinn is really not in a place to disagree. But she's entranced by what's transpiring. "C'mon," she says, her hands emphatically stretching forward. "That's pretty co— HEY."

As Deadpool skips right ahead of her, Harley glares. "You're in my way, asshole! I CAN'T SEE WITH YOU IN THE WAY."

A look to Quill, and Harley asks of him. "Since yer right there, d'ya mind gettin' the D-Bag outta my view?" Then, voice filled with exasperation, she turns her pale features back to Poison Ivy. "I mean, seriously. The parade jes' got fun, and—" Blink. "WHOA. Did that guy jes' disappear?!" He reappears. Harley's eyes light up with glee. "WHOA!" Cupping her hands over her mouth, she crows over the screaming rampaging crowd. "ENCORE! ENCORE! DO IT AGAIN!" Then there's a pause as she looks to Taskmaster. "I mean, no one's watchin' us doin' nothin' about this, right? I dunno these people." Then, realization, as she shouts more loudly: "I DO NOT KNOW THESE PEOPLE."

But not everyone is doing nothing. There are the GCPD fighting their way towards the float and the wreck, intending to do whatever they must to ensure the councilmen's safety. How? They're not quite certain. "FREEZE." Other than that.

Gardner, even without a mouth, betrays all of the signs of terror. He sweats, his eyes are saucer-wide, and his skin is deathly pale. He's an older man. An older man not built for these sort of stresses. Not even after decades of living in Gotham. But what to do? All he and his peers can do is watch. And hope for some sort of saving angel.

Peter's reaction to Ivy's lean is a further grin. I mean it doesn't seem to bother him in the least. He's been in space, he's seen all kinds. Though the special effects at this he doesn't want to miss a moment…

…but then Harley is yelling at him and Peter blinks a moment before shrugging. "Hey buddy!" He yells towards Deadpool there. "Ladies can't see too well, sidestep a sec would ya?"

At least he's not shy right.

But the councilman dissipears. And then reappears and there is more shouting and messages. And the guys mouths arn't back yet. The pilot just sighs as things just keep going worse and finally runs a hand though his hair. "Maaaaaaan…" He mutters. "…Kitten better I don't know. Make me panckaes or something for this."

"Hey buddy!" He calls out towards Quicksilver. "I mean I get you're pissed off and everything. Those guys up on the float there are the Man, and the Man are /always/ assholes but you know being a bully to people who can't stop you just makes you come off as a dick, you know that right?"

…yeah. Not fear or respect from Quill. Of course he doesn't really have either of those emotions in abundance.

Then the police show up and Quill just groans.

And steps between the police and the mutants. "Woah buddy!" This to the GCPD. "Come on, its Christmas. Calm down…" Then he looks back towards Quicksilver and Wanda. "Why don't you and Red Hot Chick there give the assholes on the float their mouths back and all." A beatpause. "Heh, Red Hot Chick…" His gaze cuts towards Ivy. "Green hot chick. It /really/ is like Christmas."

Wait. Focus Quill.

"Anyway! I get you man, they are assholes. But can you just wait till after Christmas to prove it to them?" His voice lowers to a near whisper as he mutters. "Or at least till after I leave?"

The redheaded villain is watching all this, catching some of what is being said and has to shake her head. She nods to Harl's questions, "Yeah I know who they are. Amatures who have no idea what rattles a Gothamite. Surprised the crowd is running like this so fast. You think it was New York." She notices someone with a tight red suit skipping ahead of her and her 'team mates' as it were. But the group is spreading fear and she wonders, "Bet the 'Red Pixie' there is doing some kinda low level panic field or something. Nice touch."
Poison Ivy can't help but laugh at Harl cheering the terrorists on. As well as asking someone to deal with a guy in her way. "Oh look, the GCPD is here. I feel safer already." Damn winter making her options less but there is a reason for the Holly berries on her outfit as she plucks one to roll it in her fingers. Just to be 'armed' and ready. She's a bit surprised Peter is willing to yell at Wade earning the spaceman a nod of approval. "Charming," she offers to Quill.
Ivy lets that simple little red berry get tossed out. Thing is some berries can hold a lot of seeds, and Ivy's are enhanced. Soon what starts as one berry gets smashed between the cracks of the sidewalk rapidly starts to grow in a burst of Holly bushes. The kind with really big sharp and pointy leaves. She grows them into a nice barrier to block further GCDP advance.

"Being watched? No." Taskmaster responds to Harle, "She sees something like this happening with metahumans involved likely we would be activated and shooting a whole lot of people." It could come to that if anyone here is important enough to get the Amanda Waller's immediate attention. It's all politics there most the time and this… maybe this is the politics they want to further this whole registration agenda but then maybe its not.
Taskmaster doesn't intend to dwell on that one just remaining in a non-combatant stance until an interested party starts tossing him money for somebodies head here. Anybody at this point really. Its hard not to get excited with all this commotion.

Pietro's gaze pinpoints into the crowd at the sound of someone actually approving of their trick. He picks out Harley, a vague look of puzzlement on his features, before he rolls his eyes with a passing smirk of amusement. "Gotham," he asides to his sister. "Everyone here is either a masked vigilante or a masked criminal, or so it seems."

His gaze turns to the GCPD as they make their appearance. The call of FREEZE! yields nothing but a laugh, though there's a dangerous sort of spark to his blue eyes. A spark that goes out again when that rapid-growth barrier of holly grows up between him and the police, blocking them off from the twins.

Or, perhaps more likely from the lingering look in Quicksilver's eyes, blocking the twins off from them.

He starts to lead Wanda away, but one last thing stops him; the sound of Quill's voice, raised in address. It does halt him, albeit with his back turned towards Quill. His head turns presently, enough he can regard the other man with a bored blue eye.

"Who are you again…?" he wonders.

One last thing Quill mentions pauses him before an exit, however. Some people are still missing parts of their anatomy. "Oh," he says, glancing back over his shoulder. He makes an impatient gesture, a dismissive hand wave of 'really, I cannot be bothered recalling these minutiae.' "Put those back," he says absently.

He glares back at Quill, as he reaches to heft Wanda into his arms. "And eyes off her, whoever you are."

With a flicker of acceleration, he is gone.

There's a lot going down in Deadpool's Town and he's enjoying it. He's only in the midst of the chaos because he wants to get the best seat possible. He's yelled at from a bunch of different directions and the only thing he can do in responses is raise his bag of popcorn up in solidarity. "Yes! Yes! Encore! Bravo Network!" Wade figures the best way to deal with the haters is to…

And then Deadpool DABS, spilling popcorn all over the place.

Dab On The Haters, yo. Dab.

With his popcorn gone, Wade is starting to get impatient. "Soooo… how long before Santa gets here?" This is asked of anyone near enough to hear him! He's already bored with the chaotic stuff because it didn't involve him or his katanas.

It appears assistance comes to them in Gotham.

Wanda's eyes — still burning red — are not so lost in her witch's sight that she misses these things. The laughter of someone /cheering on/ the twin terrorists for their cause. And that up-growth of holly to help them. Her moving, twitching fingers can feel the lift circuiting through the plant-growth, life how it usually is: but imprinted with the beckon of some mother.

Those with abilities have come to help.

"We have friends here…" she whispers to Pietro, a smile twitching briefly to her mouth.

With her hand in her brother's, she obeys his chaperone blindly, trustingly, pausing only in her own pace when he does, like Pietro's little shadow.

Quill comes into play. Wanda's head tiiiiiilts to one side at what he calls her. Her eyes narrow. Red light sparks dangerously in her free hand —

But Pietro has other orders for her.

Wanda knots red light through her fingers, and distractedly flicks them toward the caged councilpeople. Their mouths return. Just like that.

"We will return," she speaks, or promises, as Pietro pulls her up into a carry. Wanda's smile is serene — and then they are gone.

Oh hey someone else is doing something. The green wall of holly growing up behind Quill makes him pause and turn for a moment. Great though. Now he's stuck on one side of a wall with Psyco One and Psycho Two.

No Quill. Don't loose this. Keep looking cool.

He just winks towards Ivy. "I try," He drawls before he looks back towards Quicksilver, one hand resting on his blaster at his side. He just smirks for a moment, looking towards the pair of mutants. Then Quicksilver asks him that question. That one. Single. Glorious question.

Standing in the middle of a chaotic parade. Surrounded by holly. In the middle of a crowd no less. There is that one. Glorious question.

He draws in a deep breath. That perfect moment. He's practiced this so many times. That smirk at the perfect cant. Coat just so, hand on the butt of his blaster. Angled just right.

And best of all. /No Rocket/.

"I'm Star-lord." His voice pitched /just/ right to carry.

But then the mutants are gone and the space man just blinks.


He shouts. "Else I would have had to throw down. Guardians style!" A pause. "Which…" He mutters. "…would mean calling Rocket and Groot but its the thought that counts."

He nods though as it to himself. "They were totally scared of me."

SHIELD is, of course, watching. The parade broadcast-turned-carnage-coverage went live on the news channels almost instantly, and it wasn't hard to see things. Of course, there's plenty of agents doing their thing already to help what they can in Gotham; there's plenty more that can't.

Rusalka Stojespal is one of those agents, setting a cup of coffee down for the old man watching the same television. The sudden disappearance of the terrorists is probably enough to catch her eye, though she also can't help but recognize Quill there. Neither can she help the derisive "Star-Lord?!" in her voice.

Agent Lee, meanwhile, gives a jovial laugh and adjusts his sunglasses before sipping his coffee. "Hey, it could be worse, y'know? He coulda said he was Laserface or somethin' goofy like that. Now where was I - oh yeah. Okay so…"

GCPD, Feds, DEO, SHIELD… suits and uniforms? Taskmaster is out. When the man declares himself as 'Star Lord' the mercenary has to at least check for anything that could classify as a bounty or identification a ping at all. Nothing. Not a damn thing. No LORDS at least there is a Star Fish and a Starman even a Starkiller with a number attached. Probably some gamer geek that a rich kid posted the name of that needs a beat down. Gotham residence? Several grand and only a few blocks north? Detour it is.

"Enjoy yourselves." A quiet rumble of a distorted response to Harley and Ivy, busy, distracted or otherwise. He doesn't stick around to give it extra attention.

"WHAT." Harley's face contorts, the pantomime of tears as she pulls on her own pigtails in despair. "I WAS ENJOYIN' THE SHOW." She turns to Ivy and settles her head down on the other woman's shoulder to boohoo there. "Why don't we ever get nice things, Red?"

Because it has nothing to do with the fact that they cheer on and enable terrorists. No sirree, Bob.

Terrorists who are now gone, leaving in their wake screaming people. People screaming as they run in the streets. Screaming as they flee the line of floats. Screaming for help from cages, far too small.

The holly field that cut off the police from intervening, that gets a look of confusion and then cops are looking for a familiar face to blame for it; the Gotham list is short there.

"I dunno, some late night holiday revelry?" comes the response to a question that no one else would have been able to understand, if only for the fact that it was stated in three words that had nothing to do with absolutely anything. The shorter of the odd pair that poses the response shrugs as they move inwards towards the buildings and out of the immediate path of panicking people. Well, at least they know it's not their fault this time. They just got here! And here they thought the crowds were all at the movie theater!

Rocket scrambles up the tree-trunk leg of the tall, woody Guardian who currently sports a black and silver bandolier across his chest, settling over his shoulder to bring a clawed hand up to his brow as he peers around. He's not dressed in his normal gear either, but rather a white button-up shirt with a collar, with a black vest and dark blue pants with a red stripe down the sides.

"Hey Princess Kit-Kat, I thought I heard someone just shout something incredibly dumb. You see him? I needa find him so we can point and laugh."

Princess Kit-Kat, otherwise known as Kitty Pryde, in a white dress and a silver belt, her brown hair tucked into buns on either side of her head stands right next to Grootbacca and Rocket Solo. A hand reaches up to touch Groot on the arm as she pauses, head tilting to the side.

"It sounded like someone trying to declare themselves as Star-Lord. But that's not actually a thing at all. We know this." Kitty raises an eyebrow and looks up at Rocket. "I mean, we should know who is a lord in the galaxy, we're dressed to know that sort of thing."

With a smirk, she also gestures toward the crowd and then back up at the raccoon. "You've got about a foot or two on me, Rocket. You'd be able to get a better view than I ever would down here."

It may not be a whole costume for the bipedal tree, but Groot's not complaining. It's iconic.

Having Rocket clamber back up onto his shoulder doesn't bother him at all, but he does tilt his head at the raccoon's suggestion. He then looks to Kitty when she touches his arm, giving her that dumb little smile he normally wears.

And then it gets a little dumber. Like dumb grin stance.

"…I am Groot," Groot wholeheartedly agrees. Since the desire to satiate both curiosity and the need for more entertainment is eminent. It'll be just like in the movies! Intrepid heroes moving in to see what all the ruckus is about and such. At least Groot makes for a good crowd-clearer, anyway.

Poison Ivy offers a candycane to Taskmaster before he can leave. "I'm gonna be out of town," mostly because she doesn't want to keep the heat. She pulls Harl close to comfort her, "Because we're the only sane ones in the city sometimes, Harl." She'll stroke those pig tails into place some. "But maybe we should go, and I can make you some candy apples before I have to get to work again."
Ivy is getting ready to leave and then she senses something. Pausing as her eyes sweep around, searching. It won't take her long to find Groot and offers him a smile. "Hello friend," wiggling some fingers at him and through the Green. The others she doesn't know but with S.H.I.E.L.D. showing up it can be big problems. "Look Harl, I think I mentioned that tree man I met once. Isn't her something else? He mentioned he had friends. Pity the area's so hot."

Dammit they are already gone. So Peter just sighs, he was going to return to his errands and his meeting of the rest of the Guardians. Because the delivery of 'Star-lord' was just /perfect/. And surely. SURELY someone will remember it right. Someone will report it.

'Star-Lord saves the day!' in big Gotham Headlines.

It'll be perfect.

So distracted by this thought is he that he /almost/ missing a trio of familiar voices.

He catches the first one out of the corner of his eye as he wheels around and…


"YOU KNOW ITS A REAL THING YOU OVERGROWN TRASH PANDA!" He shouts over the heads of the crowd. Nevermind that Kitty is the one that said it. "You've seen the wanted posters!!! They were more than yours!!"

Quill starts stalking towards them, totally not caring he's shouting over a screaming crowd and people calling for help on floats. Terrified people. Since. You know. There was just a terrorist attack. A glance back over his shoulder at them to see if the police need help or not…

Then something more important strkes him.

"Are you dressed as Han? YOU CAN'T DRESS AS HAN! Go…dress as an Ewok or something! Maybe R2!" Yes this is more important. Also important is reconising that Kitty is dressed as Leia and thats kinda…distracting…

A beatpause as he stops with the headtilt.

"Oh my god just…get over here and help me get these asshats out of the cages before we miss the movie!"

A longer pause.

"And I got you some decorations for your tree." This towards Groot. Nevermind that he is a tree.

Rocket Solo waves a dismissive hand. "I bet if you tried throwing something it'd home in on his hea- Oh there he is! And hello. Groot! You never told me you knew any hot chicks!" he says, giving his pal a nudge in the face, since it's convieniently beside him. It hasn't occurred to him that all the unusual growth in the area isn't a part of some overly enthusiastic Christmas decor.

Peter Quill's shouting is an obvious indicator that they've also been spotted in turn. Really though, how can anyone miss them in their awesomely movie-accurate costumes? His laser pistol even works! "Oh BOOHOO go whine to someone else! You're just mad I look good in this an' you didn't call dibs first." The smallest Guardian folds his arms, snorting although he still looks pretty smug.

"-wait, what asshats and why do we care?" Beat. "-and are those decorations in any way cursed."

As Peter stalks toward them, Kitty raises an eyebrow in amusement. Yes, of course he's annoyed at the costumes and the—-screaming crowd? Wait, what is going on here? Immediately, she straightens. While Rocket is more focused on the costumes, she focuses on the last thing that Peter said. "Wait, cages? There are people in cages? What happened?"

Immediately, the mutant is moving from 'can't wait to see Star Wars' mode to a need to figure out what just happened here, why people were in cages and how it was that Peter managed to get a cry out of being Star-Lord. Moving away from Groot and the others, she gestures for them to follow, though.

"Groot, I'm sure your strength could help break through some bars for those I can't just phase out." She gives a look at Rocket. "We care because they're in trouble."

"-but do we," Rocket asks. Just. You know. Checking.

Why is the curtain of green wiggling its fingers at Groot? Oh, wait, greenery doesn't have fingers - the green lady has fingers. And he recognizes the green lady! Ivy! That's the name. After a beat, Groot brightens and waves back because it would be rude not to.

But back to all the yelling.

-Well, that part he can ignore, Quill's not addressing him directly. He still shrugs when Rocket interrupts his thoughts, getting nudged in the face right proper. "I am Grooft."

But GOOD NEWS again, Quill has decorations for him! THAT IS ALL THAT'S IMPORTANT. Delighted, Groot gives the Star Lord a double air high-five. Because that's a thing, right? "I am Groot!"

Yeah, he don't care if they're normal or cursed, just give him awesome stuff.

Oh, right. Helping. Groot can do that. Midway through nodding at Kitty's instruction, the tree pauses to give Rocket a look.

"He seems very nice," Harley offers encouragingly to Poison Ivy on the subject of Groot, pulling a handkerchief out of her pocket to dab at her eyes. "But… uh, yeah. Let's get out of here." The harlequin tugs on Poison Ivy's arm, intending to again pull the other woman in the direction she wants to go. And this time it is mostly in Taskmaster's wake. "I'll walk ya' home!"

But meanwhile, the half-crashed float, yes! Has people in nice suits and dresses in cages, cages that were once chairs before they were molded to a new purpose by the skilled reality manipulations of one still unknown woman in red. And whoever gets close enough is going to get a whole lot of panicked hands through those bars to pull at them. They have their mouths again, though, so at least it's very abundantly clear that they are terrified and want out. One woman, however, is just reduced to a sobbing mess, "He was right there."

"I don't know, government asshats!" Peter calls back as he waves to the float behind him. A float that has SERVING US written in flowers on the side and a bunch of panicing city council members sitting in cages made out of their own chairs on it.

"Now look, you can't call dibs on Han cause I look better in those pants!" Back to the important thing, which is arguing with Rocket. "And—-what? Of course they arn't cursed! Not everything I get is cursed! And it was the Asgardians that gave us cursed stuff not christmas shops!"

That whole play it safe and keep things on the QT is definitely not in the Guardian's style.

He grumbles a second before glancing back at Kitty. Though he /does/ pause and give Groot a look. And a air-high five. "Of course you know the redhead. Of course." Its always the tree that meets the hot chicks first.

A glance towards Kitty again before he shakes his head. "I have no idea. Some pair of crazies showed up and started shouting something about mutant rights or whatever. I didn't start paying attention till the girl made some guy dissipear." A pause. "And all their mouths dissipear too." A longer pause. "I totally made them put he mouths back though, and ran em off."

And thats how Kitty knows Gotham is bad. Peter Quill is the best hero they could find.

Poison Ivy lets Harley pull her away and lets the crowd and confusion help their escape. The GCPD are already sqawking on the radio about Poison Ivy being there, so maybe they will think it was Groot or something. She goes to hang her basket of candycanes she made, then has those dense bushes 'ripple' to push the basket carefully toward Groot and his friends. The basket even gets an addition to the handle of roots twisting in the shape of Groota and Rocket to make it clear who it is for. Time to go, and loose herself in the crowd. "Let's go Harl. I got some of that cereal you like with the marshmallows."

Sighing as everyone seems to be opting for helping the poor caged Terrans, Rocket just goes along for the ride as Groot starts trailing after Kitty and Peter.

"Uh-huh. Suuure ya did. For the record? No one's ever run off just because you shouted that stupid title of yours. Because they're usually too busy laughing and trying to breathe."

He shakes his head, hopping down from Groot's shoulder once they near the float, pausing to poke at the thing before he clambers on up to have a look at the cagey situation. It's not something he takes very long in doing because he doubles over with snickers. "Ahahaha! And to think a year ago Terrans were tryin' to shove me in a cage! An' now look'it 'em! Pfff….!" Yeah, just give him a second or two. Wiping an imaginary tear, he clears his throat and grins back at the caught humans, still trying to stifle a laugh. "Heh heh… Right. Okay. Shame I didn't bring the chainsaw- not that I think it would've worked. Didn't really work on the tree. Uuuum." He gives a bar a test-shake before shaking his head and turning. "Groot! Yer up."

Deadpool's out of popcorn and then there's the fact that Santa Clause is definitely not coming to this town. Oh and then there's probably Gotham's Finest lingering around and it's just too much to deal with. Especially when he's trying to keep a low profile.

Deadpool sets off a series of fireworks that explode in the sky. Of course, this is likely meant to be a distraction because in the next moment, he's running off towards the crowd (or lack of crowd by now?) to make with the disappearing.

"Mark my words, Santa Claus! You can't hide from me forever! I /will/ get my hands on that Turboman doll or my name isn't…"


Deadpool gets smacked into by the next bus that's headed for the pier. As he's taken for a ride, exact change spins on the ground from whence he was just standing!

As Rocket hops off, Groot salutes. "I am Groot!"

You know that whole bit about it's not wise to upset a wookie because droids can't pull people's arms out of their sockets? Groot is being a nicer version of that right now, going over to the weird-feeling cages and ripping them apart with brute tree strength. RAwr! Do not worry, distressed people! Groot is friend!

And ooh! Candycanes! He's gonna just. Take that. "I am Groot!" Groot shouts over the screaming, sounding very thankful for the Christmas gift.

"Ooh! Marshmallows! Yer the best." And, just like that, Harley and Ivy are off! To cereal. To cereal with marshmallows. Because Ivy is wonderful.

Chainsaw? Did someone say chainsaw? There's a momentary panic as the person Rocket is trying to help just starts shrieking. "THE RACCOON IS TALKING. THE TREE IS TALKING." Which, even by Gotham standards, is really weird. There's more sobbing, and now the wail of a different kind of siren as emergency vehicles tear in, to deal with the various injuries.

This is gonna be a heck of a writeup, come the morning paper.

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