2020-06-25 - Gods and Hot Dogs


Gwen and Hercules have lunch and a chat.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Thu Jun 25 20:25:05 2020
Location: Midtown

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Theme Song




The edges of Midtown are still a bit ragged, from the attacks that leveled Turtle Bay and created the DZ. Crews continue to work to clear lots and blocks, shattered buildings gradually recycled into new ones. Despite the mess, there's still a sense of… hope perhaps, or at least renewal, as the work goes on. Whistling off key, dressed incongruously like an out-of-place surfer dude in sandals, khaki shorts, and a torn T-shirt, Hercules walks along the fenceline surrounding the work area, watching the men plugging away. Part of him yearns to help, but he firmly restrains his immediate impulses for now — they have things well in hand. Idly, he tosses a small object in one hand, toying with it occasionally.

It's a great time to be a student. Summer holiday! Since school is out for now, there are young people all over the city enjoying the temporary freedom. Well, admittedly not too many of them are hanging around this area, being in the state that it's in, but there's still people passing through.

Gwen is one of these people. Perhaps a bit plugged in at the moment, with phone in hand and earbuds in place, currently broadcasting something of the more metal variety to the surrounding five feet. She's entirely not paying attention to where she's going — or at least it seems that way, but the manner in which she skirts around a pothole would seem to suggest otherwise.

One thing that's never going away, though, is food vendors; and of course there's one set up close to where the construction crews might just get hungry, and it's towards this that Gwen changes course and makes a beeline. Hot dogs? Who could refuse?

A large sign on the fence proclaims, 'We Rise From The Wreckage' and amusingly below that, 'You Can't Scare Us, We Live In NY!'. This draws a chuckle from the god, as he pauses to look at it. That's the kind of cheek and spirit he admires. Taking note of the food carts set up, though, reminds him that breakfast WAS a while back… he happily ambles over towards the carts, seeing what's to offer! It's a good day — the sun is shining, there are people wandering to and fro, and thankfully there's not a giant robot or deranged monster in sight.

Gwen tugs on the straps of her backpack, making sure it's nice and secure on both, before hse comes to a stop at the cart. "Two hotdogs, please," she asks of the vendor, and produces some cash. As she stands back to wait, she thumbs her phone to pause the music, and pulls the buds out of her ears. definitely rude to just stand there ignoring the person she's talking to, afterall.

After stuffing all that into a pocket, she finally glances over her shoulder, to spot someone that she most definitely recognizes. "Hi He-uhm-how's it going?" she inquires, quickly changing tactic mid-sentence. The sudden realization that another person has only ever seen you in costume will do that. Why doesn't danger-sense warn you when you're going to do something like that?

Fortunately, Hercules is used to that. One part 'wow it's a mountain on legs' and one part 'didn't I see that guy pick up a demonic horse and start beating on another demonic horse with it?'. Regardless he offers Gwen a brilliant smile. "Quite well, miss!" He eyeballs the menu, before fishing out his wallet. "Two 'dogs with chili and cheese, sir." He hrms, then hands the object he was playing with to Gwen. "Would you hold this for a moment? I need to pay this fellow…"

At first it looks like some kind of amateur art project, something a high schooler might do in shop class. Then Gwen probably realizes, looking at the 'Hi-Point' engraved on the side: it's a firearm. OK, it -was- a firearm. It appears someone VERY strong rolled it into a ball like it was made of Play-Doh and not steel and composites.

Gwen just sort of ends up with a mushed firearm ball in her hands. How did this happen? Why doesn't danger-sense warn her about these things either? Who know! None of her super-powers were actually her idea anyway. "Uhh, sure," she replies, all to happy to just move on from the moment where she almost acted like she knew the big guy. Which she does. Except she wouldn't if she was just Gwen Stacy.

Why didn't anyone tell her secret identities were so inconvenient?

So instead, she looks over the rolled up boomstick in her hands, and perks one eyebrow upwards. "Well, I gotta say, whoever did this to this gun, I like their style. Guns oughta be illegal."

About then, Gwen's hot dogs are ready; and the vendor puts them over by the condiments for her, which is fine, since she's still holding a used-to-be-a-gun.

Hercules pays the vendor off, and puts his wallet away before taking the ball 'o' gun back from Gwen. "Oh, that was me. I was making my way through the Turtle Bay area…" Which is kind of a disaster zone in itself, "… and someone rudely stuck it in my face. So I took it away from them and rolled it up," he mimes moving his hands like he's molding clay, "and then I grabbed him and lectured him on the importance of good manners and how strangers can be anyone." He looks rueful. "I don't think he heard all of it. He screamed, wet himself, and then fainted, so I propped him up under a tree and left him there." Just then Herc gets his dogs, and he pockets the 'ball' in order to take them. "Nothing like a New York hot dog," he says with relish.

Gwen hunhs! She nods her head, and looks… well, she does her best to look the way people normally look when someone is explaining how they're strong enough to roll up a sturdy metal object into a little lump of scrap, without saying 'Yeah, I could do that too' or anything. Besides, she already knows that Hercules is way stronger than she is.

"Well, I mean, that's a totally fair response," she points out, as she accepts her hot dogs with relish as well — literally, the green sort, applied generously. Along with mustard, ketchup, and onion. "I mean, that really *is* rude, stuffing a gun in someone's face and demanding their wallet. And you could've handed him over to the cops, I'd say leaving him under a tree to wake up is very generous of you, Mr… …?"

Hercules wolfs down one of the hot dogs happily, while Gwen starts to work on hers. "Ah, we've not been introduced." He wipes his mouth with a paper napkin, before giving Gwen another one of those smiles. "Hercules of Thebes." He says it so casually, too. "A pleasure to meet you, miss. And yes, I could have turned him over, but… he looked so utterly pathetic. I think I might've shouted a bit at him and scared him, I didn't have the heart to hand him over. With any luck he'll find proper work. There's plenty of call for it here."

By the time Hercules is done with his first hot dog, Gwen has taken a bite out of hers. Well, at least she's taking the time to enjoy ir. "Gwen Stacy," she replies, "And I'm sure he's learned his lesson, he'll probably have to get a job just to get another gun, they aren't cheap after—" and is about to continue, when she has a wait-a-minute moment, and manages the corresponding expression of surprise. You aren't supposed to already know he's Hercules, Gwen. Concentrate.

"Hercules? As in, the Hercules? Nemean Lion, Augean Stables, Mares of Diomedes, Golden Apples, Zeus, all that?" She pauses, perking an eyebrow upwards. "I uhh…" she glances towards the pocket where Hercules put the rolled up pistol. "You look great!" For your age. But she doesn't say that part.

Thankfully, Herc is oblivious to Gwen desperately trying to keep her superheroic and regular life knowledge separate. Probably because he doesn't EVER have that problem. "Pleased to meet you, Ms. Stacy," he replies. The second dog is being eaten slower. Not because Herc is full, but because he's enjoying it. "The very same," he says with a twinkle. "Though don't believe all the myths. Sometimes things get lost over the years." He can't help but chuckle at the 'you look great' remark. "You mean, 'I look amazing for a mythical hero who dates back three thousand years', right? I chalk it up to wine, women, and music."

"Well, I'm sure being immortal has something to do with it," Gwen points out. "I don't… know anything about being immortal, I'm barely over twenty, and I'm not expecting immortality. But I suppose you never know what might happen, this is New York afterall." She shrugs, taking a bite from her hot dog — still working on her first one — and nods once more.

New York indeed — where else would anyone be so cill about meeting a three thousand year old demigod?

"Maybe I should ask you sometime which parts of the myths I should believe in," she muses. "Usually you don't get to ask the participants." She chuckles softly, "I'm gonna guess the cartoon back from the eighties probably just made you shake your head, too, hunh?"

Hercules looks puzzled. "What cartoon? Not that execrable affair by the mouse company from a few years ago… faugh." He makes a face. "I'd complain, if I knew who it would make the most difference with." Pausing to consider the question in general, he remarks, "Well, I didn't -kill- the Queen of the Amazons. I suspect Hera spread that bit of slander. No surprise, she caused the ruckus in the first place." He thinks a little bit more, then comments, "I also didn't Augeas, I just helped his son overthrow him. His son killed him."

"Well, I can definitely support solutions to problem that don't involve killing," Gwen acknowledges. "Non-lethal problem solving is usually best, to my mind." She pauses, and scratches the back of her head, "That must have been frustrating, though, when Augeas' son killed him after you overthrew him without doing anything… unfortunate."

She chews that over in her mind, while having another bite of hot dog (That first one is starting to look rather hard done by at this point). "Sorry. I hope I'm not asking all the questions that everyone asks, but I hope you can understand why I might be a little bit curious." She grins, "I didn't mean the disney show, there's another one, a couple decades older. Had Hercules running around wearing a champion's belt and accompanied by a centaur and a faun, always dealing with the machinations of an evil wizard and… stuff."

Hercules shakes his head. "It was a different time, miss. Three thousand years ago, often times what law and order there was dwelt in a man's strong arm and the reach of his sword. Oathbreaking and exiling one's kin was not something you could do lightly." He shrugs. "It was Phyleus's decision, not mine." At the mention of the cartoon, his face screws up in confusion. "This is not something I'm familiar with, I fear. With a centaur? Gods no, centaurs are not the most stable companions. Too prone to drunkenness, and that's coming from me, mind you." He scratches his head. "I don't recall fighting any wizards in Greece. To be honest, I'm not sure there WERE any wizards in Greece. Sorceresses and witches, yes, but no wizards."

Gwen shrugs lightly, "Well, it wasn't that good of a cartoon, so you aren't missing much." She polishes off the first hot dog, and waves the other one around in the air. "It's… honestly, it's about on par with the Smurfs. Not as good as Inspector Gadget. …Seriously, if they ever decide to do another Hercules show, they should hire you to act in it. Or at least consult on it."

Right about to start into her second hot dog, the young blond pauses, and humms. "You ever been by Luke's? in Harlem? You should come check it out sometime, best bar in town." She smirks, "And I'm not just saying that 'cause my friends and I work there. Best food ever, seriously. Make sure Hod is cooking."

Hercules raises his eyebrows. "Hod is -cooking- now? I need to catch up with him then. Can't say I'm not pleased, though… when I first found him here he was having some issues." He shrugs, and grins. "But then, I can understand that. It's a whole new world even for gods, let alone mortals. So many new things to learn about."

Gwen chuckles softly, "I guess I shouldn't be surprised that you know Hod. That guy knows everyone it seems." She takes a step back, and lifts one hand for a wave. "Time for me to run for work though. I'll see you around! And I promise not to stuff any guns in your face, ever."

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