Gone to the Dogs

October 24, 2018:

Captain America makes an unlikely teammate of the Black Cat, as they investigate a den of demon dogs.

Parking Garage

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

There's a smart, polite rap at Felicia's door. A look through the peephole will reveal one Steve Rogers, dressed in his dark navy SHIELD attire, the subtle sheen of star on his upper shoulder the only real reveal and callback to his red white and blues. He has a helmet under his arm on one side, and the arc of his famous shield above left shoulder where he has it on his back. He's waiting semi-patiently, eyes moving down the hallway, and he lifts a few fingers to his earpiece, answering quietly, "Yes, I am, over."

There is a pale blue eye peeping. Then there's a door unlocking. And unlocking. And unlocking. Chain, deadbolt, bar. Doorknob. Stubby foot block flips up from the bottom. And the door opens. "Well if it isn't my favourite hottie," purrs Felicia. She's not in a mask. It's nothing he hasn't seen before, if he works for SHIELD, anyway. Nothing is sacred where they're concerned. She's wearing her leather body armour, but she doesn't appear to have been on her bike. "Always a pleasure to see you…"

Direct flirting always puts Steve off a little bit, and now is no different. He raises his brows and clears his throat to regain his footing about that. It is well handled, really, only a beat of awkwardness, that stems from his polite quality, and usually reminds everyone that he's extremely old fashioned. "Good to see you as well," Steve replies, always courteous. "I'm glad you are safe. Several demons were subdued outside your building," Steve supplies, his brows dipping in a concerned Serious Face common to the Captain. "I hope you don't mind me stopping by unannounced to check on if there has been any other problems here."

"Aww, and here I thought you just wanted to say hi." Felicia's expression /looks/ crestfallen, but she peers around behind her and looks back to Steve with a grin. "Nah, everything's okay here. Those demons are a pain in the ass, though. One took my bike last night. Just TOOK it, not rode off on it. Picked it up and proceeded to R-U-N-N-O-F-T. Luckily, that one was subdued, as well. By a semi, going about seventy miles an hour. Totaled my bike, but I have fantaaastic insurance." She wink and stretches her back a bit, pushing out her chest as she does. Steve's awkward has never been a match for her inappropriate.

"Pardon; my apologies: just a moment, I have a great deal of talking in my ear," Steve apologizes with a grave dismay at not giving her full attention, and his heroic jaw tenses a little. His eyes moved along the hallway's wallpaper while he listened, then immediately move back to her. "I cannot stay. There's a group of them moving under the streets here. Stay inside and safe —-" A pause. She does have a hero outfit. He makes a quick decision. "Unless you want to assist. If so, suit up and find me outside," Steve says with his firm manner that makes a lot of things Not So Casual. More the tone that makes young heroes gape at him.

"Well, if you wanted a date, all you had to do was say so," Felicia replies with a smile, as she pulls off the armoured gloves, to reveal /more/ gloves, these leather with white fur trim. She sloooowly unzips her jacket to reveal /more/ fur, and somehow she seems to be getting /less/ nude, the more she undresses. Except for THOSE…as she opens her jacket, the cleavage comes to bear, and she drops the jacket and gloves beside the door. "We really should stop meeting this way, Steve. What will the tabloids say?" But she's already fastening a utility belt around her waist and preparing to follow him, before he can even answer.

As soon as she started to even change her gloves, Steve politely turned his head away to not watch her while she did that. Black Widow sometimes plays with him similarly, but he's not that used to it. He does wonder if he's fun to them to poke at. Must be. Still, it doesn't change his reaction, which is to be a good guy and look away until she says she's ready. "All right," Steve says, and heads off down the hall in a long legged jog, efficient but not one she can't keep up with at all. Out distancing her isn't the point, but to get outside quickly. Since she's behind him, she'll get a very obvious target to follow: his Shield is on his back right in front of her, the bold stars and stripes a little nicked up on the paint from recent battles, but the metal perfect.

Felicia trots with ease after the scurrying Steve Rogers, in a scene somewhat reminiscent of a Pepe le Pew cartoon. She bounds behind him without a care, as if this is /exactly/ what she was planning to do tonight. "Why are they attracted to HERE," she asks as she peers out a window here and there on their way back outside.

"I think there's a lack of lighting in the street in these sections, but that's just a theory," Steve answers her. He pauses, clearly listening to his headset. "Captain Rogers, en route. I have another hero with me, Black Cat," he clarifies. And once exiting the building, leads her across the street and towards the larger parking structure up the block. "There's underground levels here, we'll check them on the way north." A few people that see them cheer, waving at both the Captain and Black Cat. At least one quick picture is taken. Steve doesn't ignore them, but a curt salute is all he gives on their way by and through a clump outside of the movie theater. "Excuse me, please."

The Black Cat probably has cartoony heart bubbles drifting up as she follows Steve dutifully. At least no one watching can prove that she does not. She nods at his assessment of what may have led the demons to congretate there in this particular location. "Yes, DO excuse us, please. Official business, and all that. Saving lives, taking the high road, and I'm—Hands off, Sir. Can't you see I'm waith this gentleman here?" She forcibly removes someone's hand which has reached out to touch someone, bodily. "I'm BUSY being GOOD right now, jeez…"

Steve orients immediately when Black Cat requests not to be grabbed, turning, and casting a searching look and frown. He's leading them to stop demons, but that doesn't mean he won't absolutely defend her honor on the way. He had pulled his shield off his back for other reasons, but the disapproving look he sends backwards could probably make a demon apologize for being a jerk.

"It's okay, Handsome. Don't fret, we have bigger fish to fry. He's nothin' but jealous, I'm sure. I mean who wouldn't be? Look at you…" She finishes diligently weaving through the people to find out what's on the other side. "It's like….people gathered to watch a fight or something, isn't it?"

A demon dog-looking thing suddenly charges out of the parking garage's entrance, ducking under the short gate next to the pay-station. It turns towards the pack of people and screams, unfolding head into eight horrible smaller dog-heads and two tentacles.

"I think they're going to get it, too," Captain America sighs. "Check for more, please," he says calmly but seriously to Black Cat, breaking his jog into a long sprint to engage the demonic dog, shield raised on his upper body but attacking with a knee uppercut once he deflects the defending heads with the shield.

"You got it, Boss," Felicia replies, suddenly dropping the mooney-eyed act as actual danger rears its head. Or heads. She sprints toward the parking garage, jumping the gate deftly, and another dog inside is signaled by her cries.

"Hiss, yowl!" She screams at the multi-headed beast, as her cries are accompanied by the mechanical crack and whiz of a grapple being fired. The hook lands in the strongest of the heads, and Felicia leaps to the other side of the creature in an attempt to bind the heads together with the hook's cord. She pulls hard, and the beast yelps in eight different languages as she swiftly ties her mask into place.

Captain America follows his assault on his dog with a backhand into the side of the cement foundation next to the entrance of the parking garage. It crumples; Steve makes certain it isn't going after any of the onlookers before hurlding the gate and rushing to Black Cat's aid, getting a second smaller, sneakier demon-pupper off her back, crushing it downwards with the edge of shield. "We need to find where they're coming from," he says, and then looks up. "Above you, heads up.” There's two among the cement beams and pipes just overhead.

"Looks like they're coming from heaven. Raining dogs and…more dogs." She fires another grapple at one of the beasts looking down at her, and gives it a hard pull, attempting to crash it faces-first into the concrete as it lands. "Haven't these guys ever heard of spaying and neutering? This could all have been avoided if they were responsible pet owners."

"I don't think that's how more demons are made, but I'm not an authority on demon procreation or whatever it is called. Spawning from the hell pits?" Steve asks, but he's distracted by his fighting. He's not so much of the 'witty banter' type: more the straight man. Of course. "Nice shot. Pull them both, I'll clean up," Captain America says with approval, moving to the one she brought down from above, to clout it into the cement.

Cat tilts her head, reloading a hook from her belt, and firing it at the other dog with an instant pull. This one, however, was caught mid-jump as he aimed to attack, and she pulls the thing directly down onto herself with the combined inertia.

"GET OFF!" Cat screams, her voice ALMOST in panic mode, as she punches the biggest of the thing's heads with enough force to blow it backwards, and she evades tentacles to keep from going with him.

She'll immediately have a Captain America standing over her, offering her a hand up. "Are you all right?" he asks quickly, brows concerned. He doesn't have time to really linger in that 'moment' though, there's a sound down along the cars, and he gestures quickly for them to go investigate.

Breathless and trying desperately to regain what composure was just thoroughly lost, Cat flushes and hops up with the Captain's help. "Thanks. I uh…I don't like dogs." And yet she kept a giant wasp roaming around her apartment for days while it tore up the walls.

"I don't like demons," Steve answers, in a serious enough tone. It's not really a joke at all. He's often sort of accidentally funny. He weaves around through the parked vehicles, stopping to divert to a few children with their mother to guide them towards the exit. "It's dangerous here; please head outside," he warns them. He'll he's helping them, there's a few more of the dogs bubbling out of the shadows in the cracks of the lower level, where multiple lights have burned out.

"I don't wanna be a downer, but I'm betting there's a whole den of these bastards on down there somewhere. We might /both/ be out of luck." Cat darts into the path of the incoming demon dogs to deflect them, some physically, from getting close to the family that Steve is ushering outside. "I hope this is all there is, but I wouldn't be surprised if Ba'alzebubba's down there sendin' out his hounds a few at a time to test the waters."

"I agree, it could be overwhelming. But that's what backup is for," Steve says, stopping to talk on his communicator in a lowered voice. If she listens or sticks close, though, she'll hear him direct some units of SHIELD agents around, describing their location and the threat type. "Let's get a look quietly, and see if it's what you suspect, or just some scouts." Steve puts his shield back on his back, and adjusts his pace to stealthily move deeper into the garage.

Black Cat nods, now in her element. If there's one thing she can be, it's swift and stealthy. Two…if there are two things she can be…anyway, she's into the shadows ahead of Steve before he finishes replacing his shield. She slips silently lower, crouched now as she makes her way into the darker reaches. The lights here haven't burned out so much as they have been taken out, by someone or something.

"Hold a moment," Steve says softly, chiding himself inwardly. He searches into one of his belt pockets, and offers her a communication earbud. It's Avengers style, not shield specifically. He's not at liberty to just give SHIELD things out to whoever. But in a way, this one may be better. "In case we are separated. And you clearly are an excellent scout." It's entirely honest assessment, and means something: Captain America is a great judge of skill sets.

"Got it," she mouthes, followed by "Thanks." She lifts it to hear ear as she slips deeper into the shadows, crawling fluidly over banisters, speed bumps, stairs, barriers, and painted parking lot lines, which are notorious low-key dangers. "I hear sounds coming from deeper," she whispers almost soundlessly, directly to Steve.

"Noted," Steve answers smoothly. He's moving around a different way. He's not one with the shadows like someone that is born to slip through them, but he does more than all right. The training and physique and natural tactics play well. He stays to the opposite of the side he saw her move off into. "Clear on this side." Except that he's running short of cover, there aren't many cars down there now. He moves along the side of an old white pickup and sends a quick glance down to the lowest floor of the structure. There are a few demons milling around, and a person laying on the ground.

From her position, she can see the person on the ground. "What's the situation there? Civilian down? Can you tell if they're alive?" She maneuvers herself closer. She's running short on cover, too, but at least her profile melds better with the shadows. "I can get them out. I think."

"They're not moving… can't wait. Good, do it. I'll pull their attention, go for the rescue. The SHIELD team is outside, I'll draw the demons back to them," Steve decides. "Ready?" Once she agrees, Captain America will do the heroic thing, of course: banging on the cement twice to pull attention, and with a quick calculation, throwing his shield to bounce off a column, hit one of the dogs, and be caught as he charges to snare it back up again. It's showy and obvious: it's supposed to be.

The Black Cat slinks along the shadows until she is at the closest point she /can/ be without fully exposing herself, and she crouches, preparing to run, when an errant hound pounces her from behind, trying to tear into her, but mostly managing to mangle the back of her catsuit. It takes a swift elbow to first one muzzle, and then another, and she throws it off, knocking at least a few of the heads senseless against a concrete barrier behind her. With no further hesitation, she sprints toward the fallen civilian, choosing to go over top of the dog that charges her, rather than engage it. It takes a heel to one head, and the sound of crunching bone is sickening, as she launches off of it to land next to the person, scooping them up over her shoulder and leaping back for the shadows to move him to closer to the entrance where she might be able to assess his condition.

Steve has pulled a crowd. Some were under cars. Black Cat did get her attention, but Captain America's being loud and bright. He pulled his flashlight with his opposite hand, and the glare is painful from it. The dark creatures are very interested in murdering him. He fights some while falling back, leading the group away from the civilian so that Black Cat can have some time to administer CPR if needed, or anything else. Saving the life is the priority! "How are they?" Cap asks Black Cat.

"Breathing. Got some serious lacerations, likely fractures, too. Need to get him some treatment soon. Shock is a danger, and he has a head injury. Only minimally conscious." She picks him up and moves him to higher ground, sprinting out into the daylight outside the parking garage to lay him inside the lobby of the nearest building, making sure that Steve can hear her ordering someone to call 911. "He's in good hands," she says, and sprints back into the shadows, moving as fast as she can, while still maintaining cover.

"We've got this group; the SHIELD agents are here," Steve replies back to her. "I'm headed back down below, to see if that's the last of them," he answers her swiftly. He does direct an agent to head up to the survivor to stay with them, though black Cat won't hear it, since it's a different communication.

"Fair enough," replies Felicia. "But I'm coming with." By the time she says so, she could practically have told him to his face. But she continues to slip down farther into the shadows, listening for the hideous creatures as she moves. "Awfully dark over here, and I don't have sight on me. Do you have any new visuals?" she asks Steve.

"No. Looks clean. I think these may have been leftovers from another attack; the dog pack ended up here," Steve answers. He's in view now, he isn't keeping so much to the shadows, because he has a group of agents along with him, their guns ready. They start to fan out to check over the place, lend more eyes to it.

Seeing the other agents makes Felicia more than a little uneasy. "So I've…got a thing!" She says, tapping her watchless wrist, and handing him over the communicator he had given her. And with no further adieu, she slips into the shadows to one corner and fires a grapple up through a stairwell, propelling herself straight to the top level, where she'll take to the rooftops. Sure, if they wanted her they'd have taken her. They know where she lives. But there's something about remaining in the dog pen even if the dogs aren't giving chase. She's still got all 9 of her lives for a reason, and she's not ready to give up an ounce of her freedom.

Captain America doesn't attempt to make her stay, or anything else. He does watch to see if she looks back. If she does, she gets a brief little salute from the Captain, before he falls back in with the agents to continue to secure the location, and check on the rescued man.

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