2020-04-01 - Water Geyser


A burst water main looks suspicious

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Wed Apr 1 20:13:51 2020
Location: Lower East Side

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The subway accident in Lower East Side has caused commuter problems all week. The track isn't open yet but it's not far from it, thanks to assistance provided by Lobo Tech Industries. They've provided power generators to bolster the power grid in that area to get the tracks open and running again.

It's about lunchtime on Wednesday. The streets are full of people as they head to or return from lunch. There's a problem though. A water main just burst and water is geysering everywhere - it happened so suddenly that it knocked a woman with a small boy off her feet and into the side of a building. Several others are down and several cars have run into each other when it all occured.

Needless to say it's calamitous in the area as civilians try to get themselves clear and emergency services arrive.

Bruce Banner decides to try and get a closer look at the damage done. He doesn't really have any authority, per se, but he is at least fairly conversant with the major laws of physics and, unlike many rescue or construction types, he isn't liable to be hurt if something goes wrong down then. Well. Not for long anyway. Admittedly, that is taking a greater risk of increased destruction, but anything Banner does comes with that caveat and he's reaching a certain degree of fatalism about the fact.

He has his SHIELD id on him just in case anyone tries to ipede his progress and the water at least makes a good distraction.

Brandon was several blocks away having lunch. Which is to say, he was at a Dunkin Donuts having a donut and coffee when the report of the broken water main made his browser window flash on his phone. He keeps a page of local news open in case something happens where he might be needed and the broken water main right by the subway station set off a few alarms. Once is an accident, twice is a coincidence, three times is enemy action. He's been trained to go right to enemy action and made his way to the site of the rupture to see what he can see.

As for Cain it just so happens his Ambulance was the closest to the scene when the alert went out, he and his partner (Gus) show up in an ambulance, and while Gus stays put, Cain comes out carrying a field kit slung over his shoulder as he wades into the chaos. He moves artfully through the crowd, threading with surprisingly adept movements through the gaps, and immediately starts to working on the woman who tried to impersonate a handball. "Easy ma'am, you're going to be okay…" He starts to work, soothing words for woman and child, dark green eyes focused on his patient 110%. Maybe more.

Cain is tending the woman near the location that Brandon and Bruce arrive. "It went right off in front of us …" There's now several people down and other paramedics are seeing to them.

Bruce is stopped by the police who are trying to cordone the area off, but the flash of his ID card is all that is needed to let him through. Both he and Brandon can see the area where the mains burst. The asphalt of the road is pushed up in a haphazard way.

Brandon might think that looks slightly familiar - the pattern similar to the damage that mines had caused when he was on tour. That's probably just coincidence though.

The three men can see a slim, feline-looking woman, trying to drag a man clear of the damage. Brandon will recognise her for sure.

"We need to get a block on that break." One of the police are saying. "The city is sending a crew but they can't get through. They're also having trouble cutting water to this area."

There's enough material around that Bruce could probably direct a makeshift repair - if only there was someone, someones, to help him.

Bruce Banner looks at the damage, doing a few calculations in his head as he considers the amount of force necessary to cause this level of damage. Put simply, it's not insignificant. He considers the place the policeman is gesturing to. The Hulk, of course, coudl clear the way easily, but not in any way that's directable or sane. Banner's keeping that in his back pocket unless it's absolutely necessary.

The woman with the feline aspect clearly possesses some sort of superhuman attributes, "Do you think you might have the strength to move some of this material to block the break?" he says, "Or perhaps know someone who does?"

Brandon doesn't believe in coincidences where explosions are concerned. "I'm with her." he tells the cop, motioning to Isis. "And I've seen damage like that in Afghanistan. Usually after an IED went off. No burst water main would have that kind of force.

It is very nice to have the perceptions of a speedster - he can read micro-expressions like nobody's business, and in order to move at the speeds he's capable of Cain literally MUST see almost everything around him. Even as he tends to his patient, and jots down some info, he checks to see if there's others in need. As it happens, there's other EMTs on site, so he can get the injured woman and her child packed away in the ambulance in pretty short order. "Gus…take her in, this is a mess, I'll stay behind and help the others as needed…okay?" Irregular? Yup, might even cost him his job, but…people are in need.

He looks to the others present, the Squint looking guy and the guy with the military bearing. "Gentlemen…anything I might do to help?"

"Oh it's you…" Isis Marik, the bedraggled looking feline woman, says as she looks up at Brandon. Her figure hugging black jacket with pink piping and jeans are soaked through. "I ruined my donuts." She says with a forlorn type of voice, as paramedics take the man she was pulling clear from her.

"I'm not strong but I'm quick and I can get into places. I saw someone else just over there too…" That's to Cain, because clearly that's what he does. "… on the other side of that break. But we can't get through there till we get the water down."

She looks at Brandon, speculatively "Can you help move the material? I'll help and I can slip into the spaces you can't? Between the three, four …" she looks at Bruce consideringly, he doesn't look strong but he seems to know what he's doing. "… or us, we should manage."

It's interesting she doesn't mention Brandons power - thugh she clearly knows he can armour up and maybe give some protection.

With that said, she grabs hold of a sheet of metal and starts to drag it towards the hole. Heedless of the fact she's getting wet.

"What's an IED?" That's to Brandon.

Bruce Banner shakes his head, "You'd see more shrapnel with an IED. The force is more directed than that. Nothing here is remotely improvised," he says.

He pulls a small notepad out of his pocket, quickly sketching out a design, "If you could do something like this with the rubble, I think it will accomplish things as intended," he says, showing the others.

"The sooner we can get the situation stable, the better. I have concerns that this is no accident."

"Improvised Explosive Device." Brandon answers Isis. Then in case that's not clear, he adds "A bomb. And not necessarily." he says to Bruce, moving over. "If it was placed inside the water main, most of the shrapnel would be inside the pipe. Also possible the charge was shaped, more like an EFP so it blew upwards. And I didn't say it was an IED, I said I've seen the damage pattern before. Someone knew what they were doing." He's just taking for granted it was an explosive of some sort. He looks at Bruce's diagram and nods. "We can do something like that. It won't stop the water of course but it'll slow it a bit." There are no flashy special effects. His body just starts losing focus and color till it's just swirling, translucent energy which then forms into a translucent suit of power armor which moves over to start hauling rubble.

Seeing Isis's condition, Cain approaches. "Hello, Miss. I'm a paramedic…mind if I take a look at your injuries?" To his credit he shows zero signs of caring about the mutant's obvious mutations, doesn't even register on him other than as being part of the package, no scent of or sense of fear, though /his/ scent is a tad odd, not entirely human, slightly off.

His smile is sure genuine though.

Green eyes widen when the Soldier the Squint was talking to MORPHS into power armor. "Ooooooh-kay. Only in New York." He'll patch Isis up if she lets him.

"A bomb?" Isis frowns as she looks at the diagram and nods. "We can do that." The Cain's there trying to look after her and he does smell a bit strange. Isis leans in to sniff at the man - such a cat, not worrying about personal space. "Uh. We should be helping."

She relents though and lets Cain tend to her injuries. A strained arm, that is covered in bruises. Nothing serious, but it's going to hurt a lot as the bruising comes through.

Brandon is able to shift the rubble and with Bruce directing can stem the flow of the water. He's right of course, it doesn't stop it but it slows it enough that the area is manageable.

They can all see the damage now, the pipe has certainly been blown out … well, from under it. There's a lot of rubble down there but they can shift it - carefully - and find pieces of shrapnel they wouldn't expect to there. There's not much though - perhaps it was destroyed at the time? Maybe?

Isis sniffs again and wrinkles her nose. "What's that smell? It's like something got hot and … a bit like lightning." She means Ozone.

Bruce Banner crouches down as he gets closer to the pip, moving and shifting bits around. He might be a little reckless, but he can afford to be. And his curiosity is piqued enough that he's willing to get his hands dirty, literally and figuratively.

"Ozone. Oxygen reaction. Often comes in the wake of lightning. We should be careful of any electrical exposure, especially with the water."

< Almost certainly a deliberate act. > Brandon's words are heard in the minds of those around him as well as the cops he was talking to earlier. They're going to need to make a report. < Maybe not a typical bomb but most probably a man-made event. Combined with the derailing of the subway, it seems likely that someone is looking to disrupt the area for some reason. At least they don't seem to be looking to cause casualties. >

Cain holds still - surprise mostly - when Isis just leans in to *smell* him. "Oh, um, nice to meet you too." He treats her wounds as best he can, relieved that there's no signs of deeper injuries. Once Isis is tended to, Cain looks around and sees the other EMTs seem to have things in hand, the damage is severe but injuries seem to be minimal.

And then there's words in his HEAD.

A start of surprise, and then the EMT looks to the power armored hero type, the cat girl and the Squint. "Any idea what is under that pipe? Might there be more injured down there?"

Bruce is correct of course, there is electrical exposure and they need to be careful. He and Brandon can see something under the pipe and there's certainly a person on the other side, who's not moving.

There's almost no room to get to them though - not unless someone can go through that section of pipe right there. "There is, yes …" Isis points with a slight wince. "… I can't in there though."

"Can you two see anything more down there?" She asks Brandon and Bruce? They can. It looks like the mangled remains of a phone. Did it drop there? Or was it placed there? Interesting question. More importantly, how did anyone get a device in there to do this damage.

"Why would they want to do that, though?" Disrupt things, Isis means. "It doesn't make sense, does it?"

Bruce Banner purses his lips, "Phones are way to send messages. Someone, perhaps, has left a message to be found," he says. He looks to Brandon, "Can you reach it safely? I presume your armored form is resistant to some kind of injury. If it is too narrow, I can reach it but if I am in any way injured or harmed in the process, do not help me and get distance from me as quickly as possible, for your own safety and that of others" he says firmly.

< Phones can also be used as a detonator. > Brandon points out, mostly for Isis' benefit as anyone who watches TV knows that. Not having any idea who Bruce is, he considers the man's words rather strange but… < Isis is flexible. I can lift the pipe enough for her to reach the phone. > And he proceeds to do so.

Cain shifts his position, very carefully so that none of his co-workers, or anyone else really save the other three by the pipe can see what happens. Isis will sense a spike in his anxiety, and then determination that overrides it. "She's also injured." He says to the Powered Armor guy. There's a faint crackle of purple along Cain's hand as it starts to shiver and vibrate…and then he reaches /through/ the pipe to gather the phone, and pull it out for the Squint to examine. Hey! He's an EMT, not a Squint! In any case, that crackling fades, matching sparks briefly seen in his eyes.

And now his anxiety spikes again as he waits for all three people's reactions.

Maybe it's a message, maybe it's a mistake. Hard to tell at the moment.

"I can do it …" She says to Cain, frowning slightly at the peak in anxiety. When he flickers and vibrates, hand disappearing through the pipe and returning with the casing, she smiles encouragingly and lets a wave of reassurance wash over them.

The case is mangled beyond recognition though with a bit work, they can make out a serial number. There's also some scrapnel they can collect to analyse. Good thing that they have a scientist about!

"I can contact SHIELD and see if they can look into it…" Isis says. "Or I have a couple of contacts who can look at it." She doesn't know Bruce, after all.

Bruce Banner reaches into his pocket and, in fact, shows his SHIELD identification, "Still, just let me know the contact and I'll check in through their department. It's not my usual field," he says. He does collect some of the shrapnel, though, getting one of the cops to grab some evidence bags from one of the cruisers to use.

The wave of reassurance is a good thing.

Brandon doesn't so much as glance at Cain. He doesn't seem to care one way or another and simply puts the pipe back down. He's much more interested in the phone itself though doesn't seem to look closely at it. < Detonator. > he decides, long before all the evidence is in. < We're facing enemy action. Which mens there's going to be other incidents. Be prepared. >

Actually…yes, that wave of reassurance does help a bit, Cain's emotional state seems improved. The non-reaction from the Squint…a glance at the ID, from Doctor Bruce Banner, and the Armor Guy helps quite a bit too.

"So…this was a terror attack of some sort? Perhaps some precursor to a larger attack on NYC infrastructure?"

He's not any sort of detective, or soldier. "I guess once you have the forensics analysis it might point somewhere?"

"Hmmm." Isis cants her head as Bruce holds out his ID. "Doctor Banner. I'm Isis, this is Sarge and … I don't know your name…" There's no reaction to Cains strange power.

Messing around in her pocket, she finds her business cards. They're a bit … wet. Paragon Investigation. "Agent Melinda May is one of the Agents. She sometimes acts as liaison for us."

"Maybe." Isis confirms to Cain. "You might find yourself much busier if it is. Keep your eyes open for anything strange and call me or Nick, my partner, if you see anything?" It's about now the Police approach the group.

"Good work and thanks. You made things easier for us. We'd like a debriefing if you all don't mind." Isis doesn't, she can smell the donuts that have just been bought in.

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