Revenging New York

October 12, 2018:

When a pair of demons figure out they can make blood magic potions out of enhanced humans, a demon army immediately swarms through Hell's Kitchen towards Mutant Town. GMed by Tony Stark.

Hell's Kitchen and Mutant Town, New York

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: None.


Fade In…

Demons. In New York. It sounds like the plot to a bad B movie. The demonic hordes of hell invading the Big Apple. However…this isn't in the citizens TVs. This is in their faces, their living rooms, their back allies and front lawns. It isn't the /worst/ time the city has faced, but it isn't that great either.

…but what can ya do right?

In one of those multitude of homes lived a man named Jake. Jake kept his head down. He was a good office worker. He didn't cause waves. He didn't cause trouble. This is mostly because he was Enhanced.

Not awesome enhanced. Just a little power. Hardly enough to really register on anyone's scale. He could create little flashes of light. Enough for a parlor trick or two. He secretly liked it…

…at least until a pair of very polite demons knocked on his door(yes knocked! They can have manners!) and asked for a pint of his blood for /science/.

Poor Jake.

Said demons worked their ritual using the helpfully donated blood for an experiment. And experiment that bore fruit over the weeks they have been on earth in the form of a potion. A potion that could give demons greater power…for a time. It took a bit to perfect it but the pair of demonic siblings, Kal'grog and Kul'krag by name were diligent and powerful. After all. They were doing /science/. Eventually science worked and the ritual was perfected!

…downside. To keep up production they would need a steady supply of blood of enhanced individuals.

So Kal and Kul thought. And as they thought greedy eyes turned in the direction of Mutant Town.

"We must be subtle about this," Kul thought.

"Yes, we mustn't raise suspicion of what we are doing…" Kal agreed.

They came up with a cunning ruse. They would base themselves out of Hell's Kitchen! It was close enough to their target. It was nice and homey too, even had Hell in the name! Surely they would like a little authenticity there right? Right. Though several of their minions /were/ disappointed there were no actual kitchens. Though they could fix that easily enough. Now their lair made. Their plans set. They only had to do the actual catching!

"Just wait till N'aritish gets a load of this plan!" Kal gloated.
"Yes! They think they are so smart. They are nothing compared to us, brother!"
"Indeed, brother!"

WHICH BRINGS US TO RIGHT NOW!!

Though the demolished streets of Hell's Kitchen marches a small army. Demons of all shapes and sizes, from tiny gremlins to massive beasts lumber though the abused area of the city. They carry cages and mancatchers. Manacles and chains marked with darkly burning runes. They march with a rolling gait, a thumping mass of corruption winding its way towards Mutant Town like a besieging army.

On a nearby rooftop a pair of oddly elegant figures stand. Of similar height and features, aristocratic almost features on the pair of red-skinned beings. Each with a pair of sweeping horns from their head and great red leathery wings resting on their back. Their clothes are finely cut, suits that look tailored to them. One in white, the other in black. Similarly their hair color is reversed, one white one black. The one in white frowns down at the scene.

"Kul," Starts Kal slowly. "The whole point of this was to be /SUBTLE/! THIS IS THE OPPOSITE OF THE WORD!"
"Look!" Kul says sullenly, the one in black. "You told me to find help, these guys work for a /song/. Literally. The gremlins only charged me a song. The rest of them I got for 30 souls!"

A pause.

"THIRTY SOULS! That is a /bargin/ for this bunch."

"Quality over quantity brother! What have I told you!"

At least siblings are about the same. Even in hell.


Demons in New York? It called for a response from the 'other side' of the fence. Was all this related to the recent death of an Elder god? Amaterasu didn't know for sure, but she had decided that she had grown tired of simply watching from afar and she would once more try and help mankind directly. This crisis had just given her an opportunity to put her money where her mouth is.

So far it had been small skirmishes for Ami, rescuing humans caught in the middle of the hordes unable to flee. An army of these creatures? This was more organized than she'd seen them be all this time. Perhaps it would finally draw her a little closer to finding the culprit of this particular hell on earth. It didn't really matter for the 'goddess' anyway, there were mortals in danger and she simply hadn't been on Earth long enough to see the difference between 'humans' and 'mutants' if she ever would.

Unlike the demons (or perhaps a certain Norse blood relative!), the woman's approach is rather understated. No fiery rain nor blazing light, instead a petite asian woman with long black hair wrapped in what looked to be samurai armor with the sword to match simply walked from the direction of mutant town, putting herself in their path. Understated, but not all that subtle either.


Hell's Kitchen hasn't really had time to recover since the last hit it took, and it shows in the still-dilapidated condition of the neighborhood. Even before a demonic invasion got to it, the area looked bad. Now?

Now it's a sight to make the Winter Soldier whistle quietly through his teeth, as he and his companion make their way through the area by traversing from rooftop to ruined rooftop. It's a little safer than traveling at ground level, and gives a better vantage both of the portals Jane keeps squinting upwards at, and of the streets ahead.

This is advantageous in the sense it lets Bucky Barnes see the traveling demon army long before he and Jane walk into it.

Nudging Jane and hunkering down on a rooftop edge to peer over at the commotion, Bucky scans the army in silence, before his eyes switch up to the two important-looking demons loitering on the rooftop a few blocks distant. "They're heading for Mutant Town, looks like," he says, already paging through his phone for a good weapon. "Not sure what they want over there, but they're gonna get a fight…"


Molly had been in Mutant Town doin' that whole defending the people with her makeshift giant sword thing. She even had a green cloak with hood that she was wearin' cause you can't be defendin' a whole town without looking stylish. Right? So, in a pair of thick combat boots, a pair of jeans, a t-shirt that says 'Bring it!' and a cloak she is standing on a street, looking in the direction of incoming demons and grumbling, "What the heck now?"

The large blade she stole from a demon is actually a beat up helicopter blade that has been smashed, crushed, sharpened, smashed again, re-sharpened and has leather wrapped at the end. She holds it over one shoulder as she considers, "Well, at least it'll be fun. Probably." SHe then taps the blade against her shoulder, "Good time to practice what I have been taught." She then idly looks around to see who else might be helping. Not that it matters, Molly is more than willing to fight a whole army. She tehn blinks. A samurai? Not cool! She wants samurai armor now…


When you've got a man-portable minigun, you do everything you can to arrange a chance to use it. The M134 has been burning a metaphorical hole in Frank Castle's pocket, and there's never going to be any better time than when an army of demons is literally marching through the streets of Hell's Kitchen. Frank has set himself up in what used to be a dumpy apartment building on the corner of a block and is now a half-demolished skeleton of a building. Still, it has a second floor and is about two blocks ahead of the army, and that's what he wants. Opening up a heavy duffel, Frank starts by pulling off his trenchcoat and stuffing it into the bag. Then the M134 is set down, a combat shotgun with a cylindrical magazine is slung on his back, and a high-tech-looking submachine gun is clipped to his belt at his left hip. Finally, the Punisher hefts up the minigun, stepping to one of the crumbling concrete windowsills. The yin-yang demons up on the rooftop are probably a bigger threat than the demon-parade, but a minigun is not a great weapon for picking off individual targets, so the parade it is.

The broad-shouldered man wears a black bulletproof vest with hard lines of trauma plates under the rough-painted white skull, and he gathers the minigun close to his hip. The first notice most down in the streets have is a high-pitched whine as the battery-driven barrels begin to spin. It's only a moment's notice, however, and then a blinding line of light connects the second-floor window with the front of the marching army of demons. When you're firing 66.6 rounds per second (naturally), and every tenth 7.62mm round is a tracer, it looks like a laser washing back and forth across the targets. The weapon presses hard against the Punisher's hip, and he leans into it, his body bracing against the constant recoil. The noise is tremendous, and not subtle at all, like the largest cloth in the world tearing asunder.


In the midst of the roiling army of demons, a figure marches with a skull helmet on his head, one horn up and one horn down. As they march he makes appropriate growling, spitting, burping and snorting noises as apparently most of the demons in his little army do. However besides the helmet, he's dressed … well awfully human. A black leather jacket, some ripped jeans and a long blue scarf … with boomerangs on it.

Why is Owen marching with the band of demons you ask?

PREVIOUSLY ON OWEN'S TERRIBLE IDEAS:

TLDR: There were demons marching in a group with cages and chains. That seems bad. But also kind of fun? In a terrible, awful, murderous way. Well fun to hop on in and see what's up.

AND NOW:

Owen with the subtlety of a demon army asks, "Where are we going again?" Which gets no response from his fellow demons, but does get him a suspicious glare or two. Finally Owen manages to get pieces and bits of the story as he marches his way down the street. It turns out they are out to capture and bleed metas for a demonic science fair… or something. Owen does a mental Gru looking at a flipboard with the plan 'Capute and bleed metas for demonic science fair' and that causes him to stop walking. Which of course causes a small pile up.

There is arguing and fighting and yelling which only stops when Owen, now sans helmet and holding two orange boomerangs in his hand yells out, "GUYS! I've got great news! …" he waits for the confused murmers to quel before exclaiming, "You found your first meta! And he's going to murder you all." Before the demons, who are mostly not that bright and therefor looking around for the meta Owen is referring to, can figure out what is happening Owen launches the two orange boomerangs at the largest demons he can find and blurs with speed only to reappear behind the main column.

"C'mon you Labrynth rejects! I'm what you're lookin' for! Lots of meta, only slightly diluted with alcohol!"


Demons in New York City. Billy Kaplan was shellshocked when he was ejected from Limbo only to find Limbo had come to him instead. The words of the Elder Gods' Herald still ringing in his ears, there was a long time after where the young Avenger's life was just drifting through one state of shock after the next, trying to process what had happened.

Trying to process that they had failed.

The time following has been spent in stubborn denial of that failure and an attempt to rectify it before it could get any worse, oftentimes to the point of putting himself in physical danger or worse. The Herald's words still plagued him, when he erected wards around the Kaplan home to keep his family safe. They still plagued him, when he waded out into the city proper to clear what he could of the infestation from the streets, even when it felt like trying to stop a flood by throwing water at it.

And they still plague him now, as an exhausted Wiccan shifts through the threads between existence to arrive in Hell's Kitchen with any Avengers in tow, the soft chant of 'elsewhereelsewhereelsewhere' clipping on the heels of his arrival. His eyes are heavy, his cheeks slightly gaunt — he looks like someone who desperately needs some sort of food. And yet, Billy has steadfastly ignored or gotten woefully argumentative with anyone who has tried to point this out, choosing to deal with his ailing fatigue the best way he knows how:

Stubbornly refuse to acknowledge it exists.

And this is how he arrives, floating in the air just above street level as he watches the march of those demons. Brows furrow. Lips purse. His head tilts.

"They're headed to Mutant Town," he surmises, a little too late than he's used to. Mutant Town. Where the Maximoffs make their roost. Are they there—

"We need to try and cut them off at the pass."

Don't think about it, Billy. Focus on this. This is what's important.


Mutant Town a stone's throw from Mutant Town. Weeks ago Mjolnir-turned-umbrella had languished for several days thrust within the sidewalk. It was rumored that the Brotherhood's Scarlet Witch had banished him from Midgard and that some other champion would arise to claim Mjolnir.

Two days and thousands of contestants later the hammer was reclaimed, by Thor.

The demonic horde marches upon mutant town. Curtains are thrown open. Blinds are pulled. Hands reach for telephones. For most it's a single response, 'ALL CIRCUITS ARE BUSY.' More than one set of eyes goes towards the sidewalk where Mjolnir had lingered unattended and they remember ?

*KRAK-A-THOOM*

For weeks the boiling crimson sky has sputtered sickly green lightning. Without warning a single bolt of pure electricity pierces the veil of inferno. A peal of thunder rattles windows for blocks.

Thor, God of Thunder; Dressed in a leather hauberk and scale sleeves the six circular discs upon his tunic crackle as errant tendrils of energy spark between them. Electricity curls up his right arm and arcs outward from Mjolnir which is held towards the sky. The hammer sings its metallic tone holding a single note as the hot-white glow which emanates from its core slowly dies. Crimson cloak flutters at his back.

His eyes widen at the advancing horde and for a moment a pleased grin cracks across his countenance and he laughs, joyously. It is only after a moment when the dire consequences of the situation seem to take root upon him and the joy fades as he weighs the grim outcomes of this fight.

Gunfire erupts from a nearby building. A berserker with boomerangs. Samurai. A goat walker with a sharpened helicopter blade. Thor gives a smug grin.

Hand drops. Hammer spins. A deep thrum like the blades of a whirlybird he hurls it upward into an arc and then down. Landing at the center of the horde. *THOOM* Scattering lesser demons as he swings. Swirling hammer. Heavy fist.


And how have Jane Foster's eyes been glued to the heavens.

It's just her luck. New York City is overrun with a demon infestation of all things — Hell on freaking Earth — and the onslaught of them have been enterprising on Einstein-Rosen bridges.

And Dr. Foster, one of the pre-eminent academic authorities on such things —

— has not even had time to get close and assess the anomalies. Too busy doing everything else: serviceable things, of course, such as tanking the repair to Tony Stark's fractured self, to assisting James Barnes with on-the-street assistance to civilians in need of help. But, seriously, once upon a time, she used to be an astrophysicist. Once upon a time, she was going to build a bridge.

Jane exhales into the night air as she looks up as suspected. However, Bucky's voice pulls her down to the here and now.

Dropping to a crouch, she's a dark spot against darkness, dressed in Jane-sized tactical wear, her hair pulled back, and strapped with a rifle on her back. In her hands — something she pulled from their apartment in the first nights of the invasion. It's helped her greatly. Her field hockey stick.

"Same plan as always?" she asks Bucky. "May just be up to us. I don't —"

Gunfire rains in the distance. Jane hunkers even farther, eyes wide. "Friendly, you think?!" she hisses, one hand on her rifle. "Not that we have any choice but to — is that Owen MERCER?"

Jane, from her perch, watches for a beat in perfect silence. "I mean," she deadpans. "If he's got it under control. It's not like we have to — and Thor too."


When she appears in a flash of light, Kate Bishop's violet-and-black-clad form lands on a nearby rooftop; a few months working together has given Billy enough of a handle of her modus operandi that these days, it is almost instinct to place her in the best vantage point possible so she can get a clear view of her surroundings. The better to plot and strategize, and to wrap her head around the situation.

Easier said than done, however. Ever since the invasion started, she's been on demon-smiting duty for days, firing bolts tipped with sacred symbols and holy water, and spending a few hours with their contacts in the Vatican as to the best way to exorcise them off the physical plane without having to resort to hours of latin and pea soup vomit. And while their knowledge-base isn't complete, because demons holy shit, they know enough for her to be able to do her job more effectively than someone off the street armed with a baseball bat.

Billy calls to head them off the pass.

"I need to switch positions," she tells him and Tommy through their shared comms, and off she goes, leaping across rooftops. This is New York - here, the Bat family does not have the monopoly on high-flying heroics.


As it happens, Speed is not exhausted.

He might not actually be capable of being exhausted?

"Dude, this skull-face thing isn't working for you at all," the speedster notes to Wiccan, around… Yeah he's eating a gyro. Look at all that dubiously sourced meat. The shredded lettuce, the diced tomato, feta cheese and tzatziki and hot sauce, all contained in a pita and then a nice foil wrapper. He eats it loudly. He eats it messily. "You look like… Wuzzat, Skeletor? That was the guy's name, right? Hey how did he have a skull face when the rest of him was like turbo ripped?" This train of thought causes Speed's brows to furrow above his orange-tinted goggles, as he realises that a cartoon that was old before he was even born didn't make any sense.

Fortunately, Billy gives Tommy other things to worry about, like a whole mess of demons making their way towards Mutant Town for some nefarious purpose. It's probably guaranteed to be nefarious, right? Like, they're demons. That's how they do.

It's fine though, because the young (not Young) Avengers are here, without much in the way of actual supervision! And now they can—

*THOOM*

—"Ha ha holy shit!" Speed crows gleefully. "Is that THOR? This owns!" And then the silver-and-green clad youth vanishes.

And then he comes back, and throws another foil-wrapped gyro at Billy.

And then he vanishes again.

Because he's off to plough at superspeed into the oncoming throng of monsters, because strategy is not Thomas Shepherd's strong suit.


The first pair sighted are the samuari and the girl with the comically oversized sword. The front rank of the demon horde peers towards them. A few chatter excitedly before a trio of bull headed demons step forwards. They wield massive chains that etched with runes glowing a bloody red.

"FIRST CAPTURE!" Comes the guttural roar of the trio as two fling their chains towards Molly and a third towards the mysterious Samuari.

Of course, that is when things get really interesting.

First is the sudden confusion in the demon's own ranks. A pair of massive ogre like demons turning to glower towards the very confusing form of Owen. "We seen not—GYRK!" As suddenly boomerangs slice flesh sending one crashing down and the other reeling. A massive club is brought to bear and with a roar the sweeping weapon cuts though the air towards Owen. Trying to smash him to a pulp. It seems that 'alive' is debatable with this group. Just…'with blood' is all they seem to care about.

More begin to turn on Owen as he taunts, and things might go bad for him…at least if it wasn't for a minigun suddenly lighting up the night. Mussle flash strobes from Frank's position as he walks the deadly hail down the center of the demon ranks. Many knocked off their feet, the smaller ones exploding in sprays of icor. Of course this doesn't mean they don't fight back. One of the larger and more beastial ones braves the fire to latch its claws onto a burned hulk of a car and fling it towards Frank's position as a mortal would throw a stone.

And then things get /really/ bad for the demons.

Thor's arrival is a Thunderbolt itself in the middle of their ranks. Creatures fly in all directions. Some incinerated or crushed under the fists and hammer. Driving them back, halting the advance of the main body. The shadow of a truly massive creature suddenly looms over the God though, two stories tall and look like it is made from the rubble of Hell's Kitchen itself the great elemental beast raises one hand with a roar that shatters whatever windows remain in the street and brings it down towards the God of Thunder.

It seems that the forward momentum is stopped for the larger creatures, but smaller groups of more nimble demons seem to be streaming away from the main street now. Flanking round the sudden bottleneck to try to get towards the shining bunker of Mutant Town. A bottleneck that becomes even worse and Tommy appears in a burst of hyperactivity. Like a bowlingball among pins he knocks Demons every direction, capitalizing on the chaos that Thor is causing.

Billy and Kate, Bucky and Jane. They have a perfect advantage to follow the trail of the stealthy members of the horde on towards their objective.

They might need some can openers to get though Lorna's bunker but they are willing to try.

On a roof, Kul just frows as Kal starts to open his mouth. "Don't say it!" The dark haired demon mutters.

"Wouldn't dream of it," The white haired one replies smugly. "You deal with this then. I'm going to find a different way forward…" A twist of his fingers and suddenly the white haired brother is gone. Leaving the glowering dark haired one alone on the roof.

The demon lordling rolls up his sleeves and sighs. "Fine then. I'll deal with it." He growls as mystical gestures begin to flow from the spellcaster's hands. Chains of green light suddenly shoot down from the rooftop to target Tommy, Owen, and Thor. To drain strength. Sap speed. Make them easier targets for the minions that are even now closing in.

…and on a roof not far away from Billy there is a sight that is…also slightly disturbing. A taco cart. With a pair of goblins looking very confused at how they got all the way up here near by. One shrugs to the other before they both look at Billy.

"Hey kid! Wanna taco!"
"Fresh!"
"Cheap!"
"Homemade—oh man don't eat that gyro it'll give ya worms!"

…goblins. Consummate businessmen.


The last time Amaterasu had used her power rather than merely the serpent sword? She had injured someone she had not intended. Perhaps the fury of 'gods' was simply not something that mankind was ready to see unleashed. Then, the Goddess of the Sun watches that Minigun roar too life and even her eyes widen before the ghost of a smile crosses her lips. The humans that she'd cared for and loved so dearly had clearly made their own 'fury' quite well in the centuries since she'd left.

Another with a sword, a…she wasn't exactly sure what Owen was and…the God of Thunder. It had been quite a while since the Amatsu-Kami had spoken with one of the Asgardians, in another circumstance perhaps she'd stop to chat. For now? There was a horde of demons to deal with.

The sword is drawn from its rather plain looking sheath, its blade seeming to gleam in a light that shouldn't really be present before the woman wielding it began to glow the air around her began to warp and crackle with heat. It was probably quite hot where these creatures resided, if stories were to be believed. Were the flames of 'Hell' more than the fury of the Sun? With the Goddess charging the horde blade in hand, she was going to find out. The chain that was flung towards her is already molten slag before its wielder is cleaved in two and Amaterasu begins to cut a blazing and bloody swath through the hellspawn.


A blink as she watched people attacking the demons and Molly huffs, "Hey! I wanted to do…all of that." She then looks up, "Thor! Wait for me!" She isn't caring about the green chains as they are not aimed for her. She instead looks at the source of them and yes, Molly of all people pulls out at throwing knife. She whips it right toward the demon that is throwing out chains and puts some glowing eyed super strength pepper on it, "What do ya know? Remy's knives did come in handy! To battle!" She then rushes forward and jumps high into the air, jumping over the chains from the bull demon things and coming down with a massive sword blade thing right toward the top of one of the bull demon's head, "By the power of Greyskull!" She calls out even as she attempts ot slice a bull demon thing in half.


Thor moves in the horde. At times he wields Mjolnir spinning it at hypersonic speeds scattering demons and ogres to ash. At other times they are separate entities. Thor sending it out amongst the horde where it arcs in a path of destruction while the Thunderer himself continues to pummel and choke gremlins only to have the hammer return moments later.

A shadow. A sweeping fist of debris. Brick, mortar, girders, and roofing all drive downward. *FROOM* the fist collapses the street's center and the golem's arm follows through pushing Thor deep into the sub-tunnels of New York.

Pause. Steel and stone swirl and gyrate like the muscles of a forearm and bicep. Fishing around, for a second, and then pulling outward. It's appendage emerges from the ground with the God of Thunder firmly in its grasp. *SQUEEZE* Thor's eyes bulge as it waves him about. *POUND* Driving him head first in to the street again where dozens of imps attack him with their spears and catchpoles. Inflicting tiny bleeding wounds. *INTO THE AIR* Then in the opposite direction *POUND* into a collapsed building where it rakes him around for good measure.


"Same plan," Bucky confirms, "except this time, rifle first, hockey later."

Of course, then the arrival of others alters the plan somewhat. The sudden roar of a minigun draws Bucky's eye, and he watches the tracers as they light the street up. "Friendly," he concludes. "…For some definition of the term, anyway. Whoever it is is shooting the demons. Good enough for me — for now."

And of course, who can miss the arrival of Thor? Or Owen's distinctive aura of Bad Ideas?

"Who else would approach a problem like this like that?" Bucky ruminates to Jane's incredulity about a certain Captain Boomerang. "He seems to be having fun — him and Thor. Would hate to interrupt it. Let 'em handle the crowd," Bucky says, finally opening up a certain app on his phone and unloading — a .50 caliber rifle from it. McMillan TAC-50. Bucky's favorite new toy. God bless magic. "I got my eye on something else."

That something else happens to be the remaining demon lord on the rooftop. High value target. Bucky sights, aims center mass, and fires for the spellcaster. Cut off the heads first — it's how the Winter Soldier always goes. At the least, he'll take 'disrupting that nasty chain spell that seems to be going for — '

"Are those the kids down there?" Bucky wonders, squinting downwards at the sight of Billy and Tommy.

His attention diverts afterwards, however, as a few demons break away from the group and start moving around the bottleneck. "Looks like they're sneaking around," he says, already moving to shift position. "Whatever's in that bunker, they want it. Let's move on up."


See? Going in without a plan works out fine. Owen laughs a little crazy like when Thor comes crashing down and the gunfire erupts splashing bits of demons about. He pulls out a boomerang and points it at the crowd coming for his blood, literally.

"Aww yea, now yer fucked. That's Thor."

Owen has never had a chance to actually meet the god of Thunder but his reputation proceeds him. It's someone Owen would have been pissed to face as a villain, but he's on the good guys side now! Or at least the demon killing side, which is mostly the same thing.

But then Owen notices that the two exploding boomerangs he threw earlier didn't actually explode. He realizes with a groan that he forgot to activate them. And then worse, there's some weird green chains that he attempts to speed away from only to find his speed being sapped.

"Ha! … so maybe we're both kinda fucked?"

With his arms trapped against his side he can only manage to slip out a light blue tipped boomerang. He waits patiently while the crowd of demons get closer, slavering as they call out what bits they want to eat.

"His arms!"

"His toes!"

"The face meat!"

Owen barely able to contain his disgust finally exclaims "Okay that's just jacked up dude!" before tossing the boomerang just far enough ahead of him to hopefully encase his would be face eaters in a wall of ice. At least this time he remembered to activate it… right?


Frank flinches instinctively as lightning strikes the midst of the demons, his finger lifting off the trigger of the minigun for a heartbeat to keep the rounds from going off-target. Afterimages flash before his eyes, and he squints. Are those… boomerangs? And a blonde with a hammer? Hell. Worse than hell. Friendlies in the target area. Before the whining barrels of the minigun have time to whir to a stop, Frank shifts his aim, lifting up to the rear of the horde rather than the front, and he squeezes the trigger gently. The hum becomes a whir, the whir becomes a whine, and that line of light reaches out for the demons again, this time aimed for the tail of the march. Sadly, making a minigun man-portable in the first place requires some compromises, primarily in the ammunition capacity department, so it takes just about ten seconds to run through the entire onboard ammo supply. After the roar of constant gunfire, the tinkle of empty cartridges pattering around him and the slowing hum of the barrels go unheard, but the toothy grin on Frank Castle's lips speaks eloquently to how much he enjoyed that.

That grin disappears rather quickly when he's attacked with a ballistic car. That's… really not good. The Punisher hurls the M134 to his right even as he leaps to his left. When the car enters the former apartment straight through the window, wall, and everything around it, the minigun is clattering to the ground and getting knocked about by debris. Frank himself likewise clatters to the ground and gets knocked about by debris, grunting as a chunk of structural concrete thumps down on his side, hammering a trauma plate into his back. He pushes himself up to his feet again, however, grimacing before he hurls himself through the remains of a window frame (thankfully free of glass due to explosions and lightning and demonic roars) and onto the fire escape beyond. He bounces off metal once or twice, then rides the extending ladder down to street level. Not likely that he can dodge more than one flying car up in the room, maybe he'll have better luck on the ground.


"Field hockey and ice hockey are entirely different things, so respect the distinction," grouses Jane Foster, in the midst of a demon army attack — two years into this nonsense, and she's finding she can compartmentalize the near-crapping-herself with the sass. Same with holding in practised, breathless stillness as Bucky takes that deafening shot nearby.

But she changes out her melee weapon for the rifle, and checks it, only steering it around to peer down through the scope, at Bucky's remark.

Are those the kids?

"Looks like," Jane confirms, with hope finally shading her voice. "Off to make you proud. Or learn bad behaviours off Mercer. It's — oh God. Oh God, that's big."

Enter the two-storey demon. Its distant presence shrinks Jane slightly back against the rooftop, white-knuckling her gun. She lowers her scope to follow it with her eyes — and immediately cringes the instant it goes for — "Oh God. Thor."

It happens fast, and her head snaps to one angle to watch the Thunder God go blurring away. Jane looks halfway to distraught. "He can survive that," she says, mostly to herself. "He's — had worse." Poor Thor.

She pauses a beat, then taps quickly into her phone — her own magical STUFF app. Still useful. "I didn't want to resort to this — but it might be on the table. Here." Jane manifests a small, blinking, metallic sphere, which looks more Frankensteined together than anything. "Remember the quantum detonator we didn't use up in space?"

"I've got two total. Take one," she advises Bucky, hand outstretched. "For god's sakes — last resort."

Her eyes stray again on the too-high body of a shimmering portal. Jane watches it a moment too long, before Bucky gives his order.

"Got it," she answers. Then, she pushes off from the edge of the roof, transversing the air in a long arc, and silently landing on the rooftop of an adjacent building. No human could make that sort of jump; Jane certainly can't, not without her magnetic propulsion flats. Useful things.

Keeping low along her elevated position, she follows that flank group of demons.


Even in the midst of her burning, sword-swinging dance there was one thing that Ami was certain of. The Amatsu-Kami were either -way- out of touch with the champions on Earth, or America was simply nuts. Her eyes go up to the thrown car hurtled at the building where high-velocity death had been raining moments before, but she couldn't really be sure where the source of it had been so she merely had to hope they'd survived. Molly and her big sword? She seemed to be doing fine, even be enjoying herself! Bucky, Jane and the Bat were still hidden to her and the speedster? Too fast for her to notice. Thor? He's Thor. Like the others here, it seemed that Ami figured he could manage.

Owen's own momentary snaring had her striding forward with purpose, lifting her blade and bringing it down with intent to slice right through the chains. Hopefully the magic in the sword was greater than whatever the chains were made out of.

"You should be more careful," the woman speaks in accented English…right before a demonic claw rakes across her armored back, bringing a startled cry from Ami. It was anyone's guess if her back or her pride was more hurt.


"Alright," Billy Kaplan exhales through that comm, almost more a sigh than a spoken word. "Let me just… I'll handle things at ground level with Speed. If you spot anything suspicious, let us know? I've got—"

And there's Tommy, criticizing his appearance. His brows furrow, pale lips pulling into a slow frown. "First of all, Skeletor isn't a skeleton, he's a demon from another — no, you know what, is this really important right now? You need to stay focused, Speed, this is serious — oh wow, was that Thor?"

Billy Kaplan, too tired to follow his own advice.

But at least he thinks he's thoroughly distracted Tommy from his current line of health-based critique that is not contributing to Wiccan's mono-focused attention on ridding New York City of all demons, everywhere — at least, until he finds himself with a gyro whapping him in the face, courtesy of the speediest nuisance on the entire planet (save perhaps Quicksilver (or Impulse (but don't tell Tommy that (or that Impulse exists)))).

"Agh! What the he-" Brown eyes flicker in a blink. Wiccan just stares, uncomprehendingly, at the food he's just managed to scramble to save before it hits the ground. Did Tommy just bean him with a gyro-?? He frowns, of course. And he has something to say about that, of course.

"You better have paid for this!!"

He shouts after the retreating Tommy.

Because of course that's his concern.

"Also, stop throwing food in my face!" he notes, almost as an afterthought — before he notices those goblins. And their taco cart. Their extremely suspicious taco cart. Once more, Billy blinks. Once more, he squints.

And because he has just had the worst day and has already dealt with Speed trying to force food on him, Billy's expression flattens.

It should be noted, here, that Billy Kaplan, though overall a good person, can be very vindictive sometimes. And maybe that is why he pointedly stares those goblins in the face as he unwraps that gyro, takes a bite, and only then says:

"No solicitations."

Weaving a wish into reality that will very forcibly expel the goblins and their cart.

Very, very far away.

No one likes a pushy salesman.


She's managed to switch positions, Kate hunkering down on a cover once sharp eyes have caught the sight of another group trying to sneak around the heavy hitters and the sheer damage they promise to strike at something else. She gets down on one knee, narrowing her eyes dangerously across the field, fingers tapping on the high-tech frames that she wears over her eyes.

"I see movement," she murmurs to Tommy and Billy through their shared comm. "Some magic type doing some voodoo at eight o'clock, and an entire group of demons…" She rattles off the coordinates, incidentally the group that Dr. Foster is not tracking. "And they seem to be carrying a lot of gear too from what I s— wait."

Something else catches her eye.

"There's something on that platform." She marks it with her eyes. "Some sort of industrial-grade equipment…" She zooms in. "…the Juicer? What the hell?"

A pause.

"I'm checking it out."

And off she goes, a silent, shadowy streak, moving in a stealthy pace to get to that platform and get a better view, angle and range of it.


Ominously, there's no answer to Billy's reproach about paying for things.

Though it's possible Speed just didn't hear him.

Instead, there's weirdly dopplering gleeful laughter as the white-haired speedster pinballs his way into the demon horde, demonstrating a clear lack of any kind of sense of his own limitations or mortality. It probably helps that going that fast basically turns him entirely into a weapon, a condition that's only exacerbated by the way he even more gleefully imparts his own kinetic energy on whatever poor infernal bastards he runs into.

It's…

Well, it's kind of gross, because it has a way of turning things into explodey things.

But then, despite his alarming, uh, speed, the Avenger's laughter is cut off when one of those chains of green light catches him by the ankle, and forward momentum turns into kind of a levering motion and he SLAMS facefirst into the street.

There are cracks in the concrete spreading out from the point of impact.

It's not great.

"Hey, what's the big idea?!" he demands, blood fanning down his face from a not-broken-but-it-was-a-close-run-thing nose, making a red smear over his chin and onto his totally rad green and silver costume. "Feels kinda weird," the speedster adds, his voice getting picked up by the comm line he shares with Wiccan and Hawkeye. "Like when I mixed that scotch I stole from Mr. Stark with those pills I—"

The next sound is really gross, as he develops a sensation he's never experienced before (it's vertigo) and then promptly yarfs up his gyro.

"—Guys I think they voodoo mummy cursed me!" Speed insists, despite the lack of voodoo or mummies and the clear fact that he has some kind of energy-draining magic green glowing chain tied around his leg.


And…the two story tall demonic thing has a tantrum.

Pounding Thor this way and that it seems the weakening magic might have actually done its work on the God of Thunder. Building crumple under the mighty crashings of the massive corrupted elemental(obviously how they planned to get by Lorna's bunker). Damaged buildings crumble and shake themselves apart as it manhandles the God of Thunder.

The building that Frank shot from recieves the full brunt of a flung car even as the screams of dying demons come from the tail end of the formation. The massive ogre like creature that threw it seems satisfied with the destruction. After all who could live though that.

This might come back to haunt the demon soon.

Owen, and his tender FACE MEAT, shout defiance at the demons that come for him and a boomerang whizzes out. This time though…he hit the button. Ice follows in its wake and the half dozen demons calling dibs on his various parts are frozen solid…a wall of ice in the middle of New York…

…however. One of the unfrozen ones seems to get a bright idea at this point. It climbs up ontop of the ice wall, points at Owen, taps its elbow, and leaps for the speedster.

Yes. Its totally wearing a mask.

Someone apparently got the demons cable. No idea who that could be.

Molly flings her knife at the figure on the roof and he brings his other hand up. Magic reaches out to ensnare the thrown weapon as Kul smirks. "Ah humans. So primitive a specie—URK!"

The knife was a good distraction as the 50 cal round slams into his side. The demonic chains shatter as Kul looses his concentration and as Ami's powers slice though the magic spell itself to banish the weakness from Owen, Thor, and Tommy.

Kul himself it carried off his feet by the round, rolling across the roof he was on as he leaves a trail of black tinged blood in his wake.

Of course the bull headed demon has a much worse time of it as Molly brings her sword down on his shoulder, nearly cleaving him in half. As the body falls though his friend is already swinging a chain wrapped fist for the mutant with the love of hats.

Jane? Jane will find the group she is following moving fast. Eeling though allies and ruined buildings. Trying to stay away from the heavy hitters as they carry what seems to be the majority of the capturing equipment closer to Mutant Town.

In Jane's group? There is a strange man sized device. It looks like a large glass test tube with dozens of smaller rubber tubes connected to a rubber stopper at the top. Each of the smaller tubes seems to be tipped with a comically sized needle. Tapped to it are a set of 'directions' that seem to be drawn by a five year old. They are stick figures. The first seems to be shooting something from their hands. Then there are demon stick figures putting shooty stick figure in a cage. Then demon stick figures sticking the small tubes into the chest of the shooty stick figure to fill the large tube. Under all that is written 'Specimen Collection'

They haven't noticed her yet, mostly because Demons don't really look up. However what they /do/ have is air support, and as Jane leaps a pair of demonic gargoyles swoop low over the roofs, their screeches obvious as they give chase.

Kate's group is equipped similar, employing stealth over strength to get closer to the goal. 'The Juicer' seems to be a man sized glass tube. The top and the bottom seem to be spiked metal plates with holes machined in them. To one side of the tube is a set of crude machined components that seem to crush the pair of metal plates together. And a collection hopper under said squishing plates.

…it doesn't seem to have been used.

It /does/ seem to be a massive amount of sharp shrapnel pieces just waiting to be flung every which way.

Tommy, though is having a bad time of it. Owen is about to as well. A pair of nine foot tall ogres that seem to be wielding telephone poles as clubs rush up towards Tommy as he lies horfing up his delicious gyro. Both clubs raise up and start to swing down…

…and it is just then that the draining spell shatters, giving the three heroes their powers back as the clubs lash out for Tommy and the demon elbow comes down from the top rope for Owen.

Though the scope though, Bucky will see that demon lordling begin to stand, growling to himself as green flame erupts from his eyes and one hand. The other hand fishing a potion out of his suit to start to put to his lips.


A dusty man in black pants and that black bulletproof vest with the menacing white skull spray-painted onto it steps out of the alley, snugging the butt of the automatic shotgun up to his shoulder as the first wave of demons swarms toward his position (okay, so actually they're going past him toward the bunkers at the edge of Mutant Town, but it feels like they're swarming toward his position). He doesn't have the raw power of most of the others attacking the demons, but he augers in on the explosions of kinetic energy transfer caused by Speed. And then they stop, and instead there's a kid in a green and white costume puking his guts out with a chain wrapped around his leg and an ogre standing over him.

The one downside of a combat shotgun is that it doesn't have the same clickity-boom menace of a pump action. What it does do is BoomBoomBoom very neatly as Frank pumps three rounds into the ogre's chest. "Back. Off." The words are growled in a voice that sounds like its owner gargles gravel for breakfast, but they pale in comparison to the thunder of the shotgun. Or, you know, the two-story demon smashing the God of Thunder.


Molly is so pleased by her own attack on that bull demon that she doesn't even notice till it is too late that the other demon is swinging for her. She takes a chain fist right to the face and goes flying. She smashes into a parked car, flips over it and goes head over heels into a store front. The fool. The fool of a demon had no idea what he had just done. He had flung Molly right into…a hat store!

Cue to the Popeye the Sailor Man theme song.

Molly leaps out of the window she just smashed through, her cloak torn, her hood gone and on her head is a brand new hat. It appears she has found a Moth Hat complete with long antenna. She eyes the demons, especially that bull demon and idly flips her sword up into the air and it lands through the hood of the car.

"I'm gonna show you the light…then turn yours off!" Molly cracks her knuckles, starts to glow a little brighter and then leaps high into the air and flies right for the bull demon foot first, "Dynamic Entry!"


The wall of ice gives Owen enough of a moment to breath, and be rescued by the sword of Ami. He turns and starts to thank her but that turns into an up nod of "How /you/ doin'?" in his thickest Jersey accent. But then something catches his eye. No, not another pretty girl. No, not the demon on the 'top rope' about to demons' elbow him assunder.

Why is there a teenaged white haired speedster?

"No. NO!" Truly this must be hell on earth. They're multiplying. Where did he come from? Did Pietro get de-aged? Did he get cloned? How is this possible? What did he do to deserve this? … Okay, nevermind that last one.

Owen's look of horror is only wiped off by it being smashed by the dropping Limbo Luchador. Captain Boomerang goes down. Hard. But thankfully with the chains gone, Owen's speed is back. And so he's able to recover and get some distance to launch a razor boomerang to take off the mask, with the head still in it.

And then Owen makes the super-wise decision of not conserving his speed in order to accost Speed.

"Who the /fuck/ are you?"

As if to accent the question he launches another boomerang out at an oncoming demon, wanting to make sure he gets an answer for what is obviously some demonic curse meant to sap his precious little sanity.


"Hockey's hockey," Bucky says, in the blasphemy of the century. He might just be trolling Jane, honestly.

She gets her own shots in, after all. Bucky lifts his eye from the scope to shoot her a scandalized look when she talks about the kids going off to 'make him proud.' "You'll make me feel my age," he complains, though their bickering is handily interrupted by the gigantic demon that — flings Thor away. Bucky winces a little.

"Was you hitting him with your car worse?" Bucky can't help but ask.

It's telling how much Jane likes him that she still gives him a quantum detonator after all that. He takes the object gingerly, well aware of how potent it is. "Got it," he says, palming the device away. " — Hey," he adds, noticing her line of sight, "no portals, Jane. We got hostiles on the move below."

His eyes shift back towards the now very angry demon lord, who is getting back up. "Ah… I'll catch up with you," he says, hiking his rifle back up. The potion looks pretty bad, so that's the next thing Bucky aims for, firing a shot straight at the flask. If he hits the face behind it, so much the better.


Goblins taken care of, Billy Kaplan shuts his eyes and rubs at the bridge of his nose with his free hand, fighting off the encroach of a migraine that has been lingering at the back of his eyes all day. It's a momentary show of weakness, one a self-conscious sense of pride does not let him entertain for long before he looks out over the battlefield from his bird's eye view position. Tommy — speeding off somewhere, probably, hard to track even for him. Kate doing recon, intel filtering through his comms. The others…

… everyone is struggling, to various degrees. Everyone he can see, anyway. Who knows who else is in trouble? Almost immediately, conflict bleeds into Wiccan's expression. He wants to help all of them. Save all of them. Part of him is sure he could. the other part of him is utterly frightened at that certainty, and the subsequent insecurity paralyzes the young superhero in place for a few, precious seconds —

— until Kate's voice provides him with simpler, more easily accomplished guidance. A group of demons, doing some kind of magic, carrying gear. He blinks, and looks in the directions that Kate indicates for a few, silent moments.

"… I'll check it out," he decides, abruptly, freeing himself from that anxious moment to turn himself in that direction. And Jane-wards he would likely go…

… if it weren't for the explicit sounds of someone relieving themselves of their lunch assaulting his ears.

"Tommy?!" he instantly exclaims, because:

1) He's too shocked and worried in that moment to use code names despite his constant insistence they all do,

2) Of course the one throwing up would be Tommy.

I mean.

Come on.

And just like that, some protective instinct even he can't fully grasp overtakes him, and the blue-wreathed young man is turning about in mid-air to bear down on those ogres that advance upon Tommy and Owen. Eyes glowing blow, that same energy twitches around his fingers in a way Owen Mercer might find familiar as Billy inflicts his will on the reality of those demons:

"SLOW"

It's a bit more blue than red, but, well.

Cosmetic changes are a thing sometimes.


Somewhere. Miles away over the river. There is a /blip/ of a pair of goblins and a taco cart appearing in the air.

"I TOLD YA NOT TO BE A PUSHY SALESMAN!"

And down they fall into the river…accompanied by a half dozen /other/ food carts and venders and a pair of /very/ pushy insurance salesmen.

…its fine.


Hockey's hockey.

Jane's head snaps to one side to lock the Winter Soldier with a look that could strip paint. A beat. "Fine," she concedes, pulling her rifle's bolt handle to load a shot. "Just like the air force is the army."

Preparing to give pursuit, she only pauses to Bucky's question. The shadow of a grimace darkens her face. "It wasn't a car," she corrects. "It was a trailer. Maybe."

But leaving behind the gift of her detonator, and straying one last, yearning look up at those infernal portals — Jane's eyes drop back down at the Soldier's caution. She exhales through her nose. "I know, I know."

It's a battlefield, they are soldiers, but Jane also feels herself exempt to turn a quick kiss on Bucky. "Be careful."

With the help of ROCKET FLATS (actually magnetically propelled ballerina slippers, because tech can be both functional and comfortable), she lunges away, slipping between building after building, hitting rooftops with a scrape of her soles. She lifts her rifle to follow the party through the scope — and her eyes sliver, unimpressed, at the magnified image of those "instructions."

She taps her earring, activating the communication system (it helps to be an engineer, as well as a childhood Jem fan), and transmits to Bucky, sotto voce: "They want mutants. To experiment, looks like. Christ. How the hell did they get so organized about it? Like they want to turn them into —"

Jane's voice dies out as soon as those screeches doppler in. She turns her head, eyes wide, taking in the first glimpse of those gargoyles. She could take a shot, and alert that group of demons — or.

She trades out her rifle, letting it hang by its strap on her back, and pulls her field hockey stick. Widening her stance, tightening her grip, Jane holds still — and ready. Wait for it. Wait for it —

God. Damned. Demons. The Empusa ATTACKING her years ago. Stealing her friends to hell. POSSESSING James and her. And now taking her city? Jane. Has. Had. Enough.

Two years in the making, and a long time coming, she launches into the air with a snarl, and cracks the stick around the brain a gargoyle upside the head. GOALLLL.


"You," says Sergeant James Barnes, of the 107th Infantry Regiment, offended to his core, "are on the couch tonight."


She manages to get within sights of the Juicer - at least close enough with those far-seeing eyes to determine the sheer, calamitous potential such a device could unleash if the ridiculous-looking thing was ever activated.

"…well, shit," Kate mutters under her breath. It isn't as if she can blow it up from her end, also, when it looks like the very end is to do the very thing, and take out as many others and do as much damage as possible.

So with Billy confirming his interception route towards the group of stealthy demons…

She's startled when Wiccan suddenly shouts through her comm, turning her spectacled eyes towards the direction of the sound - or where it seems to originate, tension thrumming over the line of her shoulders.

Tommy.

But the magician is handling it and she forces herself to relax.

Drawing her bow and her arrows, she doesn't aim right for the Juicer, but the space where the group is about to trod into, quiet twhip-twhip-thwips cutting through the night air as she embeds one arrow after another after another. Tony entrusts her to look after the junior Avengers in no small part because of her ability to do a ridiculous amount of homework in a short time. She arranges them in a specific configuration and lies in wait, fiddling with a small remote.

And when they cross the threshold….

She activates the arrows she has planted, carving in red laser light a banishing circle in an effort to trap the demons carrying the juicer, and send them back to where they belong.


"Oh hey it stopped," Speed notes aloud and conveniently also into the comms, though by then probably Wiccan is checking up on him anyway. For the white-haired Avenger, though, everything becomes real slow: The ogre demons seem like they're moving through molasses, swinging enormous clubs down at him. They get even slower because of Billy's magic(?) inflicting his will on reality, and with a barely-visible blur of motion the white-haired youth is on one of the clubs, visible for a bare moment before he vaults off of it to slam both feet (fun fact: he is actually alarmingly strong, because he doesn't have access to any weird fundamental universal forces to make himself fast) into the thing's jaw.

"Whoa, guy, that's pretty rude," he offers towards Owen, as though he a) weren't in the middle of an extremely dangerous situation and b) hadn't just almost died thanks to a voodoo mummy curse (it was neither of those things) and also c) hadn't just thrown up quite graphically.

Actually now he's hungry again, but also his mouth tastes like puke? It's not a fun combination.

"Wait, are you throwing boomerangs at them? What, is your yo-yo in the shop? Hey, uh…" They're probably supposed to use codenames when dealing with boomerang-slinging hobos right? "…Hawkeye! Hawkeye, me'n Wiccan just found a guy who fights with boomerangs! Now nobody can make fun of your bow and arrow, ha ha!"

Not that he would, he very scrupulously avoids making fun of Kate Bishop, because she is scary and because he has the hots for her.

Those two facts? Possibly related.

"Listen, uh, boomerang guy, I know you have the awesome power of being the worst Megaman villain but you should leave this to us, we're Avengers." He extends a fist towards Billy for a celebratory/gloating fistbump that may never come.


Billy Kaplan just stares at Tommy Shepherd flatly. He's got the face. The judging face. You know the one.

¦I


So many kicks.

The first is Molly's, slamming into the jaw of the bull with enough force to snap not only his jaw but both horns clean off. He is lifted off his feet to fly into the mass behind him and then beyond, impacting a building across the way and bringing the entire place down in a rush and roar of dust and debris.

As other more moderate sized demons notice this they sloowly turn to look back at Molly. "…er…parlay?"

The Luchidor's head bounces down the road as Owen shouts towards PieterTommy. As a second Madator starts trying to sneak up on Owen the second boomerang removes his hands even as the horde of Demons there beings to /SLOW/ under the demands of Billy's magic.

Tommy's jaw shattering kick sends the ogre crashing to the ground, taking out a rubbled wall in the process as it goes down, seeing stars and possibly its life flashing before his eyes.

Jane's angry stick catches the gargoyle in the face. Stone cracks, teeth crack, and her stick might crack…but the dazed demon starts in a tailspin that sends it careening towards the mob below, bowling a dozen over as it crashes to the ground.

Kate's sudden trick catches the other flankers entirely by supprize, and the portal that opens starts to sucking them in very much like a mystical vaccum. One after the other they go down, getting drawn in until the Juicer shifts too much to one side and crashes to the ground. Shattered and unused.

The roar of Frank's gun punctuates the mystic energies as the ogre looks very surprised at the chucks of flesh that are removed from its chest and torso at such a prestigious rate. In fact when the angry army man is finishes he can see light /though/ the demon just before it topples over to the pavement with a wet and meaty thunk.

Just before Kul is able to drink that round from the Winter Soldier /slams/ into the slim vial. A thick blood-red liquid is splattered on the demon's face just before the round itself smashes into his face drawing a howl of pain from the Lordling. Demons /are/ hard to kill, its one of the things they have going for them.

"INDELICATE HUMANS!" He shrieks, clutching his face. "HAVE YOU NO SENSE OF PROPRIETY! YOU ARE WHY WE CAN'T HAVE NICE THINGS!!!"

And a twist of his hand before he starts to meld with the shadows themselves, sore wounded enough to decide discretion is the better part of Valor.

…which seems to be a common thought right now, as the army seems to be quickly melting away in the face of serious opposition.

…maybe they /should/ have gone with the stealth approach.


"No. More. Maximoffs!"

Of course without any magical powers, Owen's words are only a horrified exclamation as he looks between a magic using Billy and the speedster Tommy. He is so aghast he can't even speak. He just pulls out a cigarette and lights it, mid battle, for his nerves.

And then the Jr. Quicksilver is barking quips at him. "Look, shut yer face. Yes, they're boomerangs. No, yer not the first to … okay, that's a decent one. Oh god wait.. " He looks between Billy and Tommy and now he's questioning if the incest is genetic too. No! Why?! Thankfully that horrifying line of thought is stopped by Tommy telling Owen to take off.

"Ooooh yer Avengers. Super. Did Tony deputize you with little badges? Maybe a nifty pin?" Mid taunt boomerang throw. "I should leave it to you? You really think throwing up on them is gonna stop 'em? By the way, you still got a little like … there" Owen indicates Tommy's chin.

And sadly there are no flesh eating demons around to distract him from the horror before him. He just throws up his hands and then thinks for a second about the gunfire from earlier. He calls out, "Big Pun? That you? … I need a drink!" And with that, he seems to take Tommy's advice of leaving the demons to the Avengers, to maybe find Frank but definitely find a drink.


Looking around, Molly immediately flexes her arms, Hulking out style and lets out a small roar before standing up and burshing a thumb along her nose. She then spits on the ground at a demon, "Git…" She nods.


Frank could get used to firepower like that. The Marine Corps let him play with fun weapons and toys, but there's something very satisfying about putting a hole that big in something that isn't human. Hearing speedsters chatter is less satisfying. A whole lot less satisfying. The Big Pun — please let that never become a thing — pumps another half dozen rounds into fleeing demon, then shakes his head, "That's not gonna become a thing, Twitch." Because names in public are wrong. There's a pause, and he looks around, "I got things to pick up. But yeah, I could use some coffee."


The first gargoyle goes down.

Jane lands an instant later, skidding to a stop on steep rooftop precipice, nearly toppling over the edge. She breathes with exertion, knuckling up her field hockey stick — now smeared with demonic ichor.

There's still a second gargoyle, circling about. Her eyes take in the rest of the fray. Friendlies, all, as Bucky surmised — people coming together to put the demonic plan down. A plan to experiment on innocents.

It's so much, and it feels like it's just not enough. What will it take?

A chilling ozone steeps the air above her — the miasma off a swirling, infernal vortex. The shape and lensing of it reflects off Jane's dark eyes. Even if she weren't pressed to do something, she'd still be enchanted. Obsessed. The minute she sees it, she knows she has to. Her soul exists for it.

"James?" asks her voice over the comm. "Raincheck on the couch."

There's a dangerous, not-enough-said intone in Jane's voice. "I'm not doing enough. I have to. I promise I'll be back."

She shifts her feet, raising her heels — and her flats respond, humming with charging energy. Then, with a low hum of propulsion, she arrows into the air, girding herself to catch that second gargoyle mid-flight — and careen them both through that portal and away.


James?

Bucky knows immediately from that tone of voice what is about to happen.

"Jane don't you fucking dare — " is about as far as he gets before static crackles over the comms. Then silence.

"For fuck's sake," he sighs.

Shouldering his weapon, he jumps up and launches into a sprint, tailing Jane, picking up speed like a coursing hound up until he finds the portal in question, looming overhead.

"This is the second time," he complains, before he jumps straight in after her.

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