Queen of Seven Crossroads (pt.1)

May 07, 2018:

Black Widow is dropped in to war-torn Corto Maltese. Things are… strange… (emits by Taskmaster)

Characters

NPCs: Machete, Lips, the Beauty

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

Corto Maltese, a coastal island in South America.

The sunset in the distance is beautiful, an orange on purple haze that streaks across a tropic sky. Along with this gorgeous backdrop is a jet, no jet native to this country, perhaps not considered native to any but all, a SHIELD jump jet. The ascent and hold hours ago having been maintained until a drop, a fast one that has the vessel shrieking low over mountains and jungles. This small island is known to be heavy with violence, at one point long ago it made it's presence known when Soviet Union support armed local rebels with a nuclear warhead called Coldbringer.

The pilot turns in his seat to look over at the agent in back, "We are nearing the drop point. You ready? We got darkness cover so you've got a walk and some time to orient yourself."

The mission briefing was given hours ago, before she departed the Hellicarrier Pericles III. A layover for the operative only. As usual her orders came down the chain straight from Fury.

Natasha had the flight timer going on her wrist monitor so she knew they were almost there and thusly when the pilot looks back to speak to her she's already right there to respond to him. Her green eyes look out the forward viewport and then over to the pilot. She nods her head once to him to show that she's ready. "Thanks for the flight. Safe trip back." She tells him, because she does genuinely care about her team mates, in her own ways and on her own terms anyway.

Nat turns back to the after of the jet then and she makes her way toward her belongings to secure them against her person, doing a last minute checkover of what she'd brought with her, which was a lot… she's in full Black Widow getup with even some additional supplies she doesn't normally have, so she's traveling a bit heavier than normal.

The mission briefing simple enough, under the cover of night Natasha is to by whatever means necessary infiltrate the rebel township of Rei Branca and retrieve the findings of Agent Olivier. A SHIELD operative who has not gone through the proper channels to check in with his handler. It is presumed he has been compromised. His last check ins put heavy indication towards the local cartel, the Rosa Caveira, the Rose Skull. They assumed control through open aggression with a HYDRA funded local clinic that was under surveillance by Olivier, he had made placed himself as part of it's numbers under the guise of Lawrence Peck. A nurse practitioner. From there, nothing is known, any additional information is to be found with Olivier or at his safehouse inside of Rei Branca limits.

The drop is a low altitude low opening or LALO insertion, great skills required, fortunately the Black Widow has them. Less than three hundred feet and a fast rate of descent she is going to come down hard, but its within a mile of the fortified outskirts and its presumed aggressive defense forces, though, it is in the air if it is the White Kings or the Rose Skulls in control right now.

No lie from her pilot the drop of the sun is casting the jungles in shadow and soon a deep dark, one that should be a trivial navigation with the right gear.

Natasha made the airdrop with exercised precision and she lands in the jungle somewhat harshly, but nothing she can't handle. Her hand reaches up and she unfolds her helmet from her face to then look around and scan the area as a whole around her. "Moist." She mutters. "I love the jungle." And its more of a grumble than anything else. The agent sorts out her gear and follows procedures to ditch it in a way that none others will easily find it.

A moment later and she's on her way toward the direction of Rei Branca. She had no plans to make herself a public figure in the township, she just wanted to glide around its perimeter and find her targets… and get in / get out. Messing with the locals wasn't something she was really 'feeling' on this mission, if at all possible. If her cover was blown though, she knew all too well that she might have to try to blend in. But a white woman with firey red hair does have some trouble with that in this region, admittedly.'

The jungles outside of Rei Blanca are thick, bug crawling and humid. The island aspect of it and current temperature right now at least allowing for a on and off breeze. The scent of ocean air prevailing along with the exotic and tropical flowering.

Surprisingly, there is a large number of 'white' people in this area due to a massive tourist attraction craze on this island before it turned in to a revolution hotspot, a shocking number of German and Russian immigrants existing here adds to a very diverse crowd. Now on the second to third generations and more of their descendants.

The edges of Rei Branca are farm third world in appearance, dotted with houses, huts and little more than shanties. It's people now just departing the fields and river ways. Dark at least in th SHIELD agent's favor as she gets close. She can, however spot a roaming trio of individuals with flashlights, assault rifles hanging loose in their arms, not the expected 'White Kings' with their dominant white scarves, ties or shirts, no these individuals wear a red pentagram resembling symbol. The fortified walls of the town are rough stone, old world and spotted with cameras here and there, at one location towards the front a machine gun nest is also present, manned by two shadowy forms. Too far away from this vantage point to make out.

'Rei Branka' - In the language known more to -her-: Ray Blanca.

White Laughter.

When you smile or laugh the whites of your teeth flash, when you are lomg dead you are always smiling as all skin is removed from teeth… And back in her day lips of liars or 'rats' were removed enough so….

The laugh that comes from the nearby shadows is feminine, hyenidae in form, but from a female who swallowed too much whiskey and smoked too many cigarettes.

Under one arm that is fishnet clad and draped over the shoulders of a soldier her age, the laugh unseen, but the scarf that rests over the bridge of her nose and dips down in the fold of bandana over her mouth is a skeletal smile, the side of her face visible heavily lined in kohl and tattooed.

The woman is dressed in a cargo.. skirt? Straps dangle, slapping fishnet clad thighs, garters peeking beneath the frills of skirt, an obvious modification of gear in mockery - But 'Sugar' can, now.

Her weapons are holstered in her 'carnival' like corset, at least those visible, her hair pulled back tight in a descending pony tail of multicolors that are… Red, White, and Black. Fitting.

She is hear for "family", but which side of it?

Mercenary now.

The Black Widow spends some time setting up some traps in the jungle, a exit route that would take anyone following her out through electricity and explosives, if she deemed it necessary when/if she has to escape in a hurry (better safe than sorry right?).

With her Widow Helmet back on, Natasha's staring at the area from inside the Heads Hp Display similar to that of Iron Man's. She's scanning the guards that are present and milling about… she tags each one of them with little markers that will show her where they are even when behind walls or cover… SHIELD Tech is the best tech, right?

The female's laugh draws Natasha's attention away from the soldier scanning, she peers out of her cover-spot to where the laughter was coming from, trying to pinpoint where this person is. Not that laughter is all that out of place, lord knows what these people get up to around here after all! But its best to know as much information as possible here.

Los Labios, aka "the Lips" is the man moving alongside Sugar. A black cowboy hat, black cowboy like outfit fringed in red and a large white smile beyond a dark mustache, near a beard. He is joking, talking about his daughters newest adventure with a snake they found, how she violently killed it with a pink play shoe.

As the HUD starts to map face to face SHIELD index is registered, as are connected law enforcement databases, this is not a typical SHIELD range threat, not the Rose Skulls at least. It is documented they lost connection with HYDRA years ago, many years ago. The White Kings though, they are a SHIELD target, their international and ultra-terrorism ties make them rank. It takes digging for these others to show.

That man "the Lips" is registered as a sub-boss, the head of smuggling for the gang. His partner? Shes far different, listed as tied not to HYDRA a mystery.. like the others. Maybe also an unknown.

Additional names show up, criminals all of them but none rank like those two. Less information on the less, beneath notice types. No one that would have had anything to do with Operative Olivier.

"You hear of the party?" Lips asks Sugar, "Big one in honor of the French getting their asses kicked we shut down these white supremist worshipping dog asses. Found some crazy shit in there too." His voice is loud, it carries, hes talking to the young woman (Sugar). "Its all gonna be a game changer, Inez. We got some serious weapons now, some freaks on our side too."

"Rosa Mascara de zapata," A rise of her hand, fingers only 'partially manicured, as the trigger finger, thumb, and middle are decrepit with broken paint in her aim and fire. "Cinco de Mayo has been celebrated even while I reside over the seas in the Ciudad G?tica." Gotham?

Sugar pivots on a booted heel to face her back towards the 'Viuda Negra' (Black Widow), still walking/sashaying with 'Lips' in a manner that shows they have…. "history", and now he has his daughter and a familia…

"But I am here, Labios, for the new battle. Father may have done as he did, but you all are still my family…" A pause as they pass the pace of the 'guards', heavily noir lashes lowering.. Did she just spot where the marker from the Black Widow landed?

Maybe? A bat of her gaze lined in darkness and it goes back to 'Lips' the smile evident in her voice!

"What you mean? Monstruo, or adicto." There's a difference. A tap to her inner elbow, then her arm pumps and that laugh echoes outward once more. Bane-level…. Or… Mutant? Either way she is not serious until the final lowly uttered query that has her pivoting to approach 'Lips' and flick the brim of his massive ass cowboy hat. (They hate that!)

"I am all for Blanco shut Down, but what is the Game Changer, Labios?"

It's possibly about to get a bit more hot in this jungle, or a bit more silent…

Natasha has her helmet's scanning devices zero in on the conversation between Sugar-Lips and she's monitoring it for the time being while she's physically making her way from cover point cover point. While focused in on it, she's making her way up the side of a structure to perch herself on top of it the darkness of a ledge's corner that holds some storage crates for whatever is kept inside the building.

Her covered eyes peer over the ledge and toward the township a little ways ahead. She sets down a bag and pulls out a small black drone that is sent up into the air and with it a camera will feed her a live shot of everything going on around her location.

"Your accent allover the place, Inez. Too much time in America." The hat flip gets a scowl and he adjusts it, "Only the Beauty get to do that to my hat."

"A geographic thing, its just an excuse really and good timing. Most don't even know why these things go down or the important but… we took out the HYDRA snakes, burned them out and cut off a few heads. Found us some of those Inhumans they were juicing, we got them thinking we saved them, they wanna go loyal with us. Beauty is smart, shes got them eating out of her hand."

A turn and he hooks Sugar's arm, walking her past the patrol that is now leaving the area, up the dirt walkway towards the town's walls. Plenty of coverage between wagons, old cars, an outdated tank, shrubbery, and the cover of night to follow.

"Weapons too. Supertech hidden in an armory down below." A grin from 'Lips' "Wild right, but not the craziest. Not at all. You'll see when you get inside."

Inside. The drone Natasha sends in to the air zips over that wall and around the city, lots of gaps, munitions are not impressive on the outside, much of the housing made from the dirt and clay, some of them actual homes, a mockery of an old German castle built central, lean-tos added to it over the years. Ex-Nazis then HYDRA occupied this place before they assumed a more domestic and local disguise of being locals, became the White Kings. Bled in to society and now its been overthrown. The camera / drone goes unseen as it flits around, picking up scanned faces until it lands on one man, a craggy faced older gentleman with dark long hair, painted make upon his cheeks and green battle armor, his muscles and tattoos showing. A long flat blade held in one hand, swinging it around in a circle as he is crouched up high, on a ledge above the castle, clearly lurking like she is.

A quick index update, facial and kinetic recognition; Machete.

A mercenary and member of Batroc's Brigade. Dangerous. Expensive.

"Yo soy la belleza, Caballero!" A scowl at Labios/Lips as he adjusts his hat. Sugar was Sold Away 2 years ago almost, but she is back because… Loyalty, and the glare is seen in her narrowed eyes and risen cheekbones just above the Skeletal smile of the bandana. Inez was the Beauty, and then… Sugar… Became real. Inez Caballero, disappeared.

What story is/was told has that rage lingering but than she is taking a deep breath at Lips. Sugar hooking her arm in his as she cocks a hip towards his to impact/o/! The artillery in the skirted cargo pockets is heavy and outlined, just like that kohl lined gaze that looks back over their joined shoulders to the shadows.

But not Up High! Not to El Machete.. Never… Why not now?

Perhaps she did not know of his presence and only felt that raise of hairs along her spine due to a Black Widow and upon her neck due to a Machete? Her hidden smile knitted in a bandana fabric of skeletal proportions is the only thing smiling. "Ahh, but being confusing is what I do." His comment on her broken accent going both ways, has a glare shot his way, her arm squeezing his to tug him tighter while fingerless gloved hand reachs back and itches exposed thigh…

Something flashes into her trigger-happy grip. "Soo exccciitteeedd!" Okay, full tilt Inez.. PLaying dumb A.F.

A growl had broken the silence around Natasha a few moments ago, a growl from behind her. A guard dog. Great… But now? That dog is seated/laying beside Natasha on the ground and he's happily munching on a bacon scented anti-dog treat that she'd pull from a pouch on her hip while she listened to the conversation and watched the feed from the Drone. The Widow's right hand gently pets the dog's head while he munches on the treat, soon to be asleep from the specially designed medicine inside the bacony treat. SHIELD has the BEST toys.

A quick hop, crawl and slide and Natasha has changed positions. She's now inside the back of an old cargo truck that looks as though it was used to haul people around. Likely from job to job. She's got her back pressed up against the cab window of the truck and her hands are holding up the controls for the drone, she's manually flying it around as she tries to target more people.

Machete? An expensive Merc here? Fantastic. She'd love to ice his ass… Just for all the foul deeds he's tagged with around the world. But: Only if he gets in her away of course!

Under the White Kings the town was heavily controlled. Enforcements, curfews, near slavery, now its a wild party, drunks laying around. Liberation and celebration. Abundance of it. The drone sees this, half the Rose Skulls inebriated, partying or in compromising positions that keep them away from weaponry and alacrity. As the drone zips in through one of the main foyer windows she will witness what appears to be a statue getting erected, pushed upright.

A woman in a red cloak, breasts exposed, what almost appears to be a chainmail bikini on her lower half, a crown on her head and a smile, a pentagram hanging from her neck and a scepter in the other. A deity of some sort.

A tall broad shouldered woman is guiding it, motioning the moves who are unboxing the towering female to settle it in. That tall spokeswoman too wears a crimson cloak, a large smile and perhaps too much make up. "Perfect." She says, her hands clapping together.

"Now The Queen of the Crossroads is represented and the Snakes will be abolished from our homeland." There is sudden jerk from the woman and she looks up, around and then starts to crouch, sniffing at the air, looking left and right. "We are being watched." She hisses. "Find its eyes and gouge them out! Find it!" She rasps.

Outside, walking through the front gate, not where Natasha can see but near enough she can still hear the dialogue of Lips and Sugar.

"You a beauty, always been, Inez but you're not /Beauty/." He teases knowing she knows what he means, "You also don't realize what you say now, I bring you in though, you're family. You'll see. Your father would be proud of us this day, we bring a real revolution and we're about to change this world."

What is Lips talking about, he guides Inez briskly across the courtyard and motions with a snap of his fingers, "You, Jimmy, come here. Come here boy and meet Inez." The 'cowboy' motions to a young man who stands up and starts to walk towards them with a shaky shy step, hes short, closer he gets she realizes he's awful pale too. Then hes standing directly in front of her. Young but an unmistakable image, the likeness is uncanny. A famous face that the world around knows. "Jimmy, he a mutant or something, also a clone child… you guess who is father is?" A finger tip rises up and pushes across his upper limit and Lips clamps his heels together and yells, "Zieg Heil!" Through a bout of laughter, unable to hold himself together.

Yes. Jimmy the Liberated is a youthful replica one Adolph Hitler.

There is a reason Inez has to "scratch her ass", or upper thigh. She has not heard from her father… ir well, perhaps 'lost the (e)mail, or changed her numbers, or ignored everything since over a year ago from him, but her connections…

Lead her back here to home base, with an itch and a trigger'ring' around her finger.

Til Death Do They Part, afterall.

Lips is glanced towards as the "youth" Jimmy comes forward in his pale formation in-bred due to the 'White Snakes'.

There is almost a pre-programmed flicker across Inez's eyes, pupil becoming pin-dot as Jimmy approaches, a gleam of sweat along her brow drawing a larger droplet to descend into painted brow. Furrowing that dark arched line, Inez's gaze cuts to Lips in his laugh as 'Jimmy" is gripped from his salute, that cut of his palm lowered to toss it against his chest like a Pledge. "Familia Granzio, Jimmy." It almost shoves the youth back and to skid across his ass as she whispers. "/Know your family, they are who you 'hail'./"

"Not funny!" Inez now is bowing from 'Lips'' grip to slide to the side and stand lateral to him and 'Jimmy'. "You got control, like the /Don/ you are," No, not giving him away… She knows…!

"You know… better… Please, so not let out Madre Seguro (Mother of Safety/Mother Land) turn to Meurtos.. (Death)…" Like herself. "For your daughter, brother."

Jimmy better stop stiff-arm saluting and get the fuck up or she is going to step over him and leave him to the Beautiful Wolves. "No, I am not Beautiful anymore." The holstered and corseted pistol is drawn and if Jimmy does not post-haste it is aimed at him.

"We do not make slaves of enemies. My Father…" Does Inez even know? She just casually lets it hang low and free, like the Balls she attempting to have right now!

When the warning came out that they were being watched, the drone that Natasha was piloting went into auto-pilot mode and lands itself on a ledge where it takes a… transformer-like approach to hiding itself. It turns into a blackbird that from-afar might be overlooked, but up close its more like a stealth fighter-shaped bird, with smooth surfaces and some hard angles here and there. Its worth a shot to hide it and preserve it, if possible!

The Black Widow? She's slipped herself into the cab of that old work truck and is now behind the steering wheel with her black bodysuit helping to keep her hidden inside of the dark cab of the truck. She's got her helmet on still, so her whole body is encased in black. She's got her eyes on Sugar and Lips, but a visual feed is still coming from that drone that is literally 'perched' on a ledge now.

The sudden 'violence' thrown at Lips and Jimmy has the kid shriveling up and guarding himself, the process of this actually makes his arms and hands 'spine' out with quills. Dozens of them. "Don't hurt me!" He yelps out.

Lips lashes back with a shove, "Calm down, Inez! You're taking it all wrong, this just a joke. We saved him and his brothers and uncles, this whole town a lot of them look just like that kid. We pulled them out of the clinic. Where they were chopping up those 'NuHuman pods' we seen on the news last year. Relax, girl, relax."

"You not getting that upset about the Beauty thing are you? It changed now. Its different when that said because you remember, Plague? He is now a she, he killed Sueno, took the crown and you… I told you. You'll just have to see all of this."

"It's crazy. Way crazy." He cannot emphasis that enough.

While that drone settles in to hiding Natasha will realize it may or may not have been her that was the one being spotted, Machete is descending rapidly, a fast fall down towards the flooring of that foyer, ramming in to the side of the statue and spinning with his weapons out, the spectator vantage hidden with the placement of her drone but she can hear still, "I only came for your head, witch." The voice of Machete rolls out. "You go easy or hard, pick where I start hacking you up?"

"No, you come in to my house, you are the one to die now. I am the High Priestess of the Night Lady, I am un-killable, you made a mistake coming here, to our new sacred land, this is where the Queen of the Crossroads will come forward, join the world of man again and make them all bow, beginning with you."

"Whatever lady, Machete bows to no one, man, woman or whatever the fuck you are." There are sounds of fighting now, a cry out and shuffling. Fortunately no alarms yet, no bells, only the grunts, muffled fighting noises and cursing.

The 'shove' from Lips has Inez regaining her stance slightly and the pistol swinging from him to be braced by two-hands, muzzle down upon the ground between herself and Lips. "Not my intension." Her accent still hinting her intention upon Jimmy as her gaze reflects those spines. "I am simply not okay with /ninos/ being esc… enslaved." A tilt of her head towards Jimmy, that high-pulled pony bearing their 'colors' sweeping between exposed shoulder blades that are tense in a readiness to spring and open fire with her pistol painted in… Sugar Skulls?

"Show me," A lift of chin still hidden beneath that bandana skull grin, but the gesture comes with the weapon being leveled to her side, safety clicked, and eyes closing towards Lips.

"I am sorry, hermano," brother. "It has been different since I was made to…" A glance to Jimmy when her eyes open and she holsters *one* weapon, but her hands are empty.

"…Wait… what?!" The fuck? Plague is… Beauty? Blank. Stare.

For the moment, Inez does not know, nor see the Machete, nor the Widow… Distracted.

All Hell was breaking loose in the town tonight, so it would seem. And for once? Natasha didn't start it! Or at least, she doesn't THINK she started it, unless that dog she fed the sleeping treat had RATTED HER OUT!

No, that can't be it, that dog has to be happily snoring still on that balcony he'd found her on.

The good part about this, as far Natasha can see from her two vantage points, is that Inez is making quite a scene and they're really talking a storm up and providing her with a lot of information. But sadly, she's no where closer to find out where Agent Olivier is… All in due time though, hopefully!

"Yes, Plague is now the Beauty, not my Beauty, no one ever her but the Beauty of the Queens. Very much. He brought power with him, old world power." That pentagram hanging off his neck is lifted up and shaken, "See this? This is her. The Goddess walks at night and speaks through her gifts. We all heard it, its how we come to this." His arms wave out wide, motioning around them. "Through her, through Pl… Beauty, the Goddess she lead us here, gave us the means and the timing. No more to contest us and then we spread. We even got Jimmy and his brothers to take the minds of the neo-Nazis and Hydra fanatics. Best thing,, they all like uh, mutants but not, you know, their bio… things all spliced up to make them special like Jimmy. Some read minds, some breath fire, some fly. It amazing, the Goddess is really looking out for her warriors. You should return to us, Inez. Get back in to the family business." Lips looks about ready to put his hand on her shoulder when there is a gunshot. Then another and another.

Running starts to happen, alarms start to go up in the form of fires sparking to life, shouts and two old bells. Lights are powering on, 'choompchoop' someone is even beginning to crank and aged air raid siren.

Unfortunately for the Black Widow, shes near one of those generator connected spotlights and fires up, washing the truck shes on in vibrant illumination.

There is even dogs howling and snapping. It is apparently time to make the party that much more exciting…

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