2019-10-30 - Spider-Hunt 2B: FIND LOCAL GUIDE.


Gwen wakes up in a strange apartment, only to discover that the really scary nightmares happen when you're awake.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Wed Oct 30 00:00:00 2019
Location: Apartment, Upper East Side, at 1 AM

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Theme Song



The trip is a long ride through a chaotic landscape. There are sounds, the screech of tires, whispered conversations, faint screams, and odd…MEATY sounds.

Consciousness returns…slowly. Gwen finds herself on a rather pleasant leather couch. She is not bound, or even chained. She is wounded, surely, but she is not restrained.
Then the voice comes.
"Hey there, Miss Stacy."

Finding herself laying on the couch; not exactly what she was expecting, after the fight she'd been involved in, followed by being roughly hurled into the back of a hummer. When consciousness returns, it takes Gwen moment for her to entirely process what's just been said to her; after all, she's been called 'Miss Stacy' for pretty much her entire life past the age of six.

Of course, that was before she put on a spider costume.

Gwen sits bolt upright, or at least she tries to. Her broken rib sends pain shooting through her body from top to bottom, so she just squeaks in surprise and stops partway. She clenches eyes and teeth, and hisses until the moment passes. Once things start to subside, she slowly opens her eyes to look around. "Where… am I?" she asks, quietly.

The thin man with the short black hair and weasel's face smiles thinly. "This place belonged to my boss."
It is a very palatial Upper East Side apartment, with large windows, panels wood floors, a full kitchen with a chopping-block island on wheels, and modern furnishings.
"As you can probably guess, he won't be needing anymore, so Morlun chose to make this his…hunting camp, as it were." He takes a deep breath. "He told me to tell you not to run. In fact…he's on his way someplace to make a very personal statement."

"And why the hell should I listen to either of you?" is the immediate demand. …Well, aside from the broken rib, bruised kidney, muscle damage, and all that. But she doesn't voice that part. "If he wants to demonstrate to me… what he's capable of, he doesn't need to bother. I looked in the warehouse. I saw." She slowly pushes herself to sit upright, keeping one hand over her rib — not that it helps.

"So I'm sitting here with a broken rib, looking at… I'm guessing a low level criminal? No offense, but even hurt, I don't think you're a threat to me." She looks about for her mask, and locating it on a side table, reaches over to reclaim it. "So what's your deal, then? What do you get out of this?"

The man smiles thinly. "I'm the unlucky putz he found when arriving on our universe. In our universe. Whatever. What do I get? I get to keep my brain in my skull. I'm as much a prisoner in this gilded cage as you are."
His phone suddenly beeps. He sighs. "Okay…looks like he's done." He puts the phone down. "One hour ago, while you were recovering, he took the Hummer. He told me he was driving it to…" He takes out a slip of paper. "…153 East 67th Street."

Gwen knows that address VERY well. She's gone there multiple times.
It's the location of the 19th Precinct…where her father works.

This is where Gwen's eyes snap wide open, and she bolts straight up out of her seat, somehow managing to ignore the rush of agony that comes with it.

"WHAT?!" she explodes, her voice having gone high-pitched with terror. "What does— WHY IS HE THERE." She casts her eyes about for her backpack. "Where's my backpack? What have you done with my phone?" She doesn't seem interested in waiting; she holds her hand out and fires a thin webline to yank Dex's phone out of his hand, and then another with the other webshooter, to hit the on button for the TV.

"What the… What is his PROBLEM?! Nobody there is anything to do with this!"

Dex is startled when the phone is yanked from his hand. But then again, maybe not all that surprised.

The TV flicks on. Normally, on this channel, Stephen Colbert is scheduled to inverview Natalie Portman about her new movie.
Instead, the words BREAKING NEWS are spread across the screen.

Gwen feels a stone in her chest. "No no no no no no no," she gasps; her eyes are alreayd going red, and she's trying to remember. Was Dad on patrol tonight? Was Dad at court tonight? was Dad in that meeting with the other precinct captains over at precinct 12 tonight? That was tonight, wasn't it? Right? Right? Or was that tomorrow night?

She opens the phone, and looks for a redial. Of course, the phone is locked again, nobody just has 'swipe to unlock' these days. "Call him!" she snaps, tossing the phone back to Dex. "Tell him to stop, I'll stay here, he doesn't have to hurt any of them, Just call him and tell him not to do it, they… they're INNOCENT," she shouts, "Just leave them out of this! Please!"

Dex sighs, taking the phone and dialing.
The screen brightens and the words BANK HEIST TURNS BLOODY appear on the bottom of the screen. The talking head is relaying how people should avoid the Upper East Side, should stay off the streets…

Then Dex lifts the phone to his ear, and listens. "Yes. Yes, boss, she's awake."
He holds out the phone to her. "He wants to talk to you."

"You BASTARD!" the words can't come out of Gwen's mouth fast enough; her voice has gone high-pitched in accompaniment to the tears rolling down her cheeks. She draws a ragged breath, then another, trying to find the words. "You didn't… you didn't have to do that! They weren't anything to do with anything! You could have just tied me up!"

The phone case gets a little crack in the back of it, and another one becomes evident in the screen; hearing the sound, Gwen forces her hand to relax so she doesn't destroy the phone. Who knows what Morlun would do next. "Why?" she demands, "Why?!"

The voice is Morlun's. Quiet, powerful, self-assured. "Hello, Gwendolyne."
No one called her "Gwendolyne" except her father, and only when she was in deep trouble.
Which means it fits now.
"Why? To send a message. To you. To show you that there is no one that you can protect from me."

The TV begins running pictures of the Chase-Madison Bank, the crowds outside, flashing lights everywhere. The words at the bottom say DEATH TOLL AT 12.

Not the precinct. A bank a mile away.

Then another picture, one that nearly makes Gwen's heart stop in her chest.

"Captain George Stacy, the ranking officer present at this heinous attack, is being escorted by four SWAT police to the hospital, but reports are coming in that he has NOT, in fact, been harmed…"

Gwen is about to verbally jump through the phone to castigate Morlun with every wrong word she's ever learned, when she sees her Father on the television screen. Her Dad. Alive. Still.

Her knees go weak, and she drops to the floor, right where she's standing; the phone tumbles out of her hand and she covers her mouth with her fingers, her other hand holding her up. She just sits there, staring at the television.

But the phone isn't going anywhere. Morlun isn't going anywhere, either. Feeling ice grip her heart she picks it up, gingerly, as if she were holding the Devil's contract, and lifts it to her ear.

"What do you want from me?" she whispers.

The voice returns, and it is filled with satisfaction. "I hold your heart in my hands, Gwendolyne. If you leave…or disobey…or go against me in any way…I will not chase you. I will simply go to your father. He will have the best protection your police can provide."
A pause.
"It will not matter. The price of your disobedience will be the very public death of your father in the most creative way I can imagine. And then I will visit everyone on the same street, and they will suffer the same fate as your father."

Gwen holds the phone up to her ear, listening to what this nightmare on the other end is telling her. A nightmare who massacred a few dozen men to summon Spider-Man. A monster who slaughtered 6 policemen and a six-man bank heist crew, just to make a point to her, to back up a threat. She wants to threaten him, to scream at him, to rage at him, like she's never been angry before. But what would that do? He already chased off four Spider-People and backup, and she didn't have broken bones then.

So she sits. Quietly. She dries her eyes (not that it helps much) and listens.

"If you are obedient, then I will not end your life at the conclusion of the hunt. You are young, immature, and there is no challenge to you. Spider-Man…he is the Center of the Web."
A short pause. "You will stay with Dex until told otherwise. You will do as you are told. And when the hunt ends as I expect it to…you and Dex will go free."

"Why?" Gwen answers with only a single word. The meaning is clear; not why did you kill the cops, or why let me go, or why any of that. Why come after Spider-Man. The word hands in the air after Gwen utters it, the silence broken only by quiet sniffling as she continues to wipe her eyes.

"Because my kind has always hunted the great Totems. And now, I seek the greatest of them. You cannot know the importance of his existence. He is connecting to all of them. If I can claim him…the Spiders of a million worlds will be broken, unable to fight. They will be easy prey."
He chuckles. "I will be home soon. Rest up, little Spider. The Hunt continues."

Gwen knows she should keep him talking; try to get him to give away something important, try to find a way to reason with him. That's what her Dad would do. Instead she thumbs the screen to hang up, and throws the phone back at Dex's feet.

"I hope you're happy," she mutters, as she rises to one knee, then back up to her feet. She collects her mask, and tugs it on over her head — for all the difference it makes. "Where's my backpack, and my phone?" she demands, mostly just for something else to focus on for a moment.

Dex looks at her with sad resignation. "Backpack's in the bedroom. The phone should be there, too. Just remember…if you call anyone, they are fair game."

The TV is still going on about the almost-robbery. Gwen stares at Dex, then points at the screen. "I didn't call any of them," she points out, in a flat tone of voice. She doesn't say anything else; there's nothing else to say anyway. She holds her side and walks at a ginger limp out of the room, hunting for the bedroom; shouldn't be hard to find in an apartment. When she finds it she walks inside, closes the door, and deploys a generous helping of webbing to keep it shut; not that it'll help against Morlun, but at least it'll keep Dex out.

Sleep is impossible. She just sits on the edge of the bed (laying down with a broken rib is hideous), stares at the phone in her hand that she can't use, and cries.

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