2020-08-16 - Ascendence


A mutant arrives at the Tolliver Clinic with a horrifying story. It spurs XMen and allies into action.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Sun Aug 16 03:07:10 2020
Location: The Disaster Zone

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Theme Song



Early this morning a mutant staggered into the Tolliver Clinic. They were a mess - exhausted, dehydrated and injured. Well, the doctors there had thought it was injured until they got a good look at her - she'd been operated on, and not well.

Which is why Hank McCoy was called.

After talking to the woman, several others had been contacted and the group headed for a building right on the far edge of the Disaster Zone. The building in question is set back from the street - being on the fringes, it had avoided too much damage, though the group can see broken windows on the upper floors, and a small parking lot out the front with a dilapidated fence around it.

In one part of the parking lot, two people are smoking, rifles slung over their shoulders. On the opposite edge, two more people are standing, dressed in lab coats and carrying tablets. They seem to be waiting for something.

Not that the group has to wait long to find out what. There's movement at the doorway and a small group of clearly animalistic mutants shuffle through it. A big wolf man, a not quite so big wolf woman, a male with very simian features and a slim, toffee coloured fur feline.

The feline has bright blue eyes and if it wasn't for the fur, would look just Isis Marik. The big wolf man? Surely that's Nick Gleason,

"Ah, here they are. Let's put them through their paces." Those with enhanced hearing get that from one of the lab coated people.

Those with the ability to scent will get the whiff of reverbium as the breeze stirs.

When the woman arrived, the Pride sprang into action; they always keep a very close eye around the clinic, as it is one of three 'sanctuaries' they maintain and protect expressly around Mutant Town. They kept an eye on the woman as she traveled, not knowing what she intended until she arrived there. Not asked for help, they did not interfere. But when the doctors make their assessment, the Pride springs into action.

Hunter appears. No one calls; it is unnecessary. The homeless veteran who is the usually unspoken leader of the Pride just shows up, hovering and listening.

And when knowledge of the location is passed, she hears it. It is rumored that Hunter hears everything that happens in Mutant Town. It may not quite be true … but it might be closer than most would believe.

Hunter keeps watch over the site. She doesn't say a word. She rarely does. But her hands are signalling. Counts. Directions. Positions. Indications of weapons, and of victims. And when she catches the scents of those who are known allies … Hunter goes stiff. Bristling. Her calmly resting 'predator aura' goes into overdrive, almost instantly to 'murderous intent, barely leashed'.

Hank of course came as soon as he could, he's only 90 minutes away or so, and with the urgency - he did it in 70, speeding a bit in his beloved Bessy, his blue '78 reconditioned (and heavily modified) Ford Grenada. Hank does leave word at the Institute that he's en route to the clinic in Mutant Town, because they like to know where he is - also, they can track his comms - that's quite deliberate too.

Once the injured mutant is cared for, Hank would, in a less than good mood - actually, he's pretty growly about it, head to the rendezvous and is more than happy to provide a ride for Hisako as well, diverting to get her and Piotr as well. In fact Piotr and his mass is one of the reasons he modified Bessy so much! Shocks and the Suspension are greatly beefed up. "So…there was a mutant here that had been surgically altered. Badly. I got her treated, and she gave me the location we're heading for."

When the arrive and the furry form mutants start trooping over, he hunkers, and /growls/ low and throaty, it is something that Hisi has rarely heard, and Piotr has likely never heard, Hank is /not/ typically a growly guy. Of course Hunter's senses are keen enough that she can likely recognize both his scent AND that growl. "Reverbium." And then he blinks again. "And two of them are Nick and Isis." Both of them people known to the Institute, and those who've been there.

And of course Hank is well acquainted with Hunter's aura. "Ah…good, we have at least one ally." His voice is still a lot harsher than usual, that reverbium, whatever it is, is something he knows…add to that the fact that Isis and Nick are friends, yeah, he's a bit peeved.

Dazzler is here as a representative of the Young Avengers. Or the X-Men. Or simply as a concerned mutant worried about what is happening to 'her' people. And it seems she has reason to be concerned. Joining the others at watching the scene, she tries to process it all. "Anyone ever see 'Island of Dr. Moreau'?" she muses. Dazzler is no tactical expert - she's a pop star! - so she is happy to leave the planning to others. Doesn't stop her making suggestions though. "Those two with the guns are just the tip of the iceberg. But we can probably take them out." She glances around at her 'teammates'. "Do we want to see what those 'paces' are? Wait, you know them?"

The large mutant, covered in organic osmium lets out an angry sigh once he sees the labcoats and the animalistic mutants. Lab coats and mutants don't mix, unless it's Hank of course.

Speaking of Hank, Colossus looks over to the man they call the Beast, hopeful to get some sort of insight as to how they should proceed. Tactics aren't really Piotr's strong suit. His strong suit is his strong suit.

Piotr nods to Dazzler, as if to say she said what he was thinking.

'Surgically altered mutants' is really all Hisako needs to hear before she's willing to come along; she's heard rumors, including back when she was kidnapped by some extremists near her Japanese home. Fortunately, that particular gang didn't seem to have the equipment or the know-how, but that didn't stop them from talking. Loudly. On purpose, no doubt.

So the young Japanese woman - who, let's be honest, probably looks out of place next to Hank's fuzzy blue frame and Piotr's looming bulk - is just as ready to jump into the fray, although she's staying powered down for now, watching from their staging/hiding point.

"That's Isis?" Hisako whispers back to Hank, staying hunkered down - with an effort; she's about ready to leap into the fray, and devil take the hindmost, as Hank himself might say. But she's conscious enough of the larger situation that she bides her time, her gaze flicking between the mutants, the apparent guards, the probable scientists, and the rest of the surroundings. There's probably more security around than just a couple of guys with rifles - and she's trying to figure out whether those rifles are any more exotic than your average five-rounds-rapid bullet-firing weapons, too. "Beast," she asks after a moment's peering, "can you tell whether the guards' weapons are mundane or something else?"

The Spider-Woman is here, and has been for a few minutes; the black and white clad hero sits atop the highest perch she can find, crouched where she's at once hard to see, and has a commanding view. Of… rank bigotry in progress, it would seem, and some rather unsavory looking characters with rifles. She observes them without interference, for the moment; no need to rush straight in without a little learning first.

While she's at it, she pulls out her cellphone and snaps a couple of pictures of the perpetrators. Might as well give them a second look later, see if anything shakes loose. In the meantime, she tucks her phone away again and tugs on the straps of her backpack, making sure it's good and tight, before climbing over the edge of her rooftop perch — time to relocate somewhere better for attacking than just watching.

It's rather normal for Shayera to spend her off time flying back and forth and across the Disaster Zone, ferrying supplies and food in, carrying messages and sometimes people out. She was just on her way back toward the clinic when the call went out for people to converge on a particular building. She acknowledged the call and headed toward where the others can be found.

A raptor-like shadow passes over Hunter's location and the sound of Shayera backflapping to land nearby. Hopefully those people over there didn't notice her, because subtle? What does it mean, subtle?

The group of mutants in the parking lot all line up. All of them look rather … docile. As docile as predators can look, anyway. When the big brown wolf man turns, his claws shine silver in the light. The wolf womans tail also gleams silver, and the simians fangs shine as well.

"Alright then." The woman with the clipboard says "Let's see how well this has worked." Just behind her are four sparring dummies but these are made of metal, not wood or fabric. "You and you …" she indicates Nick and the Wolf-Woman. "You first …. attack."

The wolf-woman growls and launches herself at the dummy, her tail slashing to bring the dummy crashing down. It's not light and lands with a CRASH. She leaps on her target and buries her claws deep in its chest. The metal doesn't slow her a bit.

The woman with the tablet looks expectantly at Nick. Waiting to see what he will do.

Isis' head cocks, a low feline growl, coming from her throat "Someone is near …" It's probably a good thing for the group that her power isn't directional. But Nicks is …

As the breeze kicks up again, the scent of the guards and the labcoats reaches the group. They aren't purely human ….

A nod to Alison. "The larger wolf man, is Nick Gleason, and the smaller cream colored feline form mutant is Isis Marik, both of them comprising Paragon Investigations. They, and I, have been working an angle with such things as we're seeing here - mutants, altered by surgery, implanted with advanced tech - sonic voice box, cybernetic enhancements, that sort of thing. Fueled by a particularly nasty substance called 'reverbium', it…is multifaceted, I used some myself to defur for a few months, until something…" A shudder. "…anyway, it is a dangerous catatlyst and can be used for a great many things."

"Yes." Hank has NO doubts. "That's Isis, Armor. And the other is Nick." He looks like he's barely in control of his anger, which is not a good thing at all. "They appear to be mundane weaponry, but I can't be sure. They could be firing clips of super ammo." He looks to Dazzler and Piotr…and of course Hunter is surely listening in, Hank is speaking low, but not so low that her keen senses will miss it. The movement of the flying woman, yeah, that will catch Hank's yellow eye, and then he'll zoom in. "Ah, another ally, Hawkgirl." He chin points to that rooftop landing, but remains unaware of the Spider-Woman's presence just yet.
Hank sighs. "Crud…she's sensed us, Isis is an empath…projective too." He hastily focuses on shielding, but he can't cover anyone else even as he informs those who don't know her.

"Smell. Vixen armor." They are the first words Hunter has spoken the entire day. That sing-song, mush-mouthed soft-spoken lack-of-accent of hers, and her usual laconic minimalism. She doesn't explain more. Instead she turns her head around, looking at the winged woman. One fist raises, flashing five fingers, an open-splayed hand. Fist. Splayed hand. Fist, splayed hand. Fifteen. Then one finger. Two fingers. Three fingers. One second between.

And then a snap.

Hunter's head lowers back to rest her cheek against the stock of her rifle. The countdown has begun.

And then a peculiar signal passes from the thin band around her wrist. Dot-dot-dot-dash-dash-dash-dot-dot-dot STOP dot-dash-dash-dash-dash-dot-dot-dot-dot-dot. For those who are not experts in Morse Code, that's "SOS 15"

Fifteen seconds later, the first rifle shot is fired, taking out the most alert of the riflemen below. One-point-two seconds later, another shot is fired through the second rifleman.

Hunter is hunting.

Dazzler listens to Hank with growing anger at what is happening in front of them. "So, someone is trying to make them into weapons. A story as old as time." A slight look of alarm as Hank informs that they've been detected. "That's not a good thing, is it?" she notes as nonchalantly as she can.

Dazzler stares at Hunter's hand signals, quirking one eyebrow. "That's all supposed to mean something, right?" she whispers to the others. And then there are gun shots. Stealth has been retied. Again.

Nick lifts his nose to sniff but the gunshots rather obviate the notion. His ears lay flat. He doesn't like gunfire. Never has. It hasn't ever really deterred him from anything before and probably won't now but the suddenness of the shots and the uncertainty as to their source make him balk.

"Over there." He can at least point out the others he has smelled. Though… that might now also be somewhat moot.

There's a gleam of silver at his throat as well as on his claws. Something about him has been altered.

If Hisako were less human-looking, *she'd* probably be growling by now as well, seeing the captive mutants - more than just 'captive,' but bio-augmented, *weaponized* - being put through their paces does not sit anything remotely well with Armor. She's seen too many mad science projects like this, even within the fairly short time she's been active beyond the Institute's walls.

On the plus side, though, they have allies - plenty of them, from hte look of things. Spider-Woman, Dazzler, Hunter … she takes fleeting note of the winged woman as well, relaxing when Hank IDs her as another friendly.

And then Beast confirms that the catwoman down there is Isis - and as if Armor needed the reminder of Isis's empathy, Beast confirms it as well. Hunter takes matters into her own hands before the rest of them can get into motion; Armor just shakes her head. "Colossus, toss me - preferably to the building side of that field. If there are more inside, I'll stop them."

Gwen remains undetected! Maybe? Hopefully? Well, her danger-sense isn't telling her there's about to be bulletes sharing space with her in the next ten seconds, so she feels like she's good. And while Hank might not've spotted her, she has spotted Hank and the others near him, and so for the moment is content to sit back and wait for the fight to start before springing her own ambush.

That's how spiders operate, afterall. Sit, wait, and be patient until the moment is right. Right? Right.

Of course all of that more or less goes out the window once there's gunshots. She doesn't waste any more time then; not quite the signal to begin she was expecting, but this is no time to be picky. She leaps off the side of the building onto the next one, and then jumps down, to land next to the lab-coated sci— not scientists, Gwen reminds herself, they clearly wouldn't pass an ethical review board.

"Hi!" she greets cheerfully. "My name is spider-Woman. Allow me to introduce you to web-in-the-face." And with that she fires a quick blob from each of her webshooters.

Colossus grimaces as Hank details some of the particulars as to what has been going on. As the gunshots ring out, however, he knows the time for planning and patience have come to an end. He pulls up to his feet and looks towards Hank and the others he's close to, "I will draw their fire." Slowly, and as menacing as he can, he begins to stalk towards the entrance, putting on a bit of a show with his large stomps in hopes of getting some of these fools to focus on him so others can do what needs to be done. But just then Hisako asks him to be thrown. It takes all he has not to laugh at the idea, but he keeps it in check. He takes Hisako into his arms and pivots upon his heel before throwing here straight towards the building side of the field, hoping that his aim is true.

Shayera looks over toward Hunter, watches the handsigns shared, and nods her acceptance. She hears the weird little blips and beeps, and thinks she was told something about them before, but they don't register immediately with her. Instead, she leans at the edge of her chosen rooftop with her wings poised. She's clearly preparing to dive in.

The instant the second rifle shot rings out, she pushes off of the roof, giving a few fast wingbeats before folding into a dive. It's honestly a bit short for a dive, but she's making the best of it. Her mace is still firmly on her belt, so it's difficult to tell exactly what she's planning on doing, except that her hands are outstretched as if reaching to grasp something.

It certainly does smell like Vixen armour. Hunter has that correct and Hanks word support that as well. And yes, stealth is retired.

The rifle shots ring out, and the first guard drops. The second guard is alerted though and manages to dodge the second shot. Just. The cement behind him splinters and shatters as he rolls to his feet, raising the weapon and firing a shot back in Hunters direction. He's good and he can get a bead directly on her. How???

There's another three shots from the rifle, whizzing through the air this time at Dazzler and Hank and whoever else is left standing with them. Well, one makes it through and then Colossus is there, catching the other two bullets as he strides.

"Ah well, we wanted to see how you performed …" the labcoated woman is actually smiling. "Go get them …"

The simian man turns to follow Armors trajectory, leaping across the lot to land right near her as she lands. She's tackled from behind. And he's strong!!

Shayera's leap, the wings particularly, gains Isis' attention. The feline-woman, tracking the drop before she too leaps, her now silvery claws erupting from her nails as tries to grab one of those wings.

That leaves Nick and the Wolf woman. The wolf woman just runs at Colossus, reverbium coated claws trying to score his armor as her tail whips around to catch his ankles.

Hank blinks, noting something displaying on his HUD, and then nods. "Ten seconds, rifle shots incoming most likely." And then they do, right when he says. "Right then." He nods approval to getting Hisako where she wants to go. "Odds are there will be reinforcements, Armor…I'll see if I can do anything with Nick and Isis, with their augmentation - and the increase of their bestial nature…yeah, they're going to be a handful. I've not seen anything like the silver at their throats, so it could be anything." He looks to Alison. "They have super senses…but so do I and Hunter, if you do sonics that will be detrimental to both friend and foe, that said…use your best judgement." To Piotr. "Grapple Nick if you can, I'll try for Isis." And then to the open air. "Hunter, probable visual trauma incoming." He doesn't even raise his voice!

FORTUNATELY - the very act of shielding has helped him get a fairly firm grip of his temper, for the moment. Oh, Spider-Woman, good. That's a good thing. Hank dives into the path of the bullet if he can, protecting Alison - he has armor, after all, and might be just a tad bit physically tougher than the woman. Granted she's no wimp, not even close, but…Hank is wired to be Hank, and that means he'll take a bullet for a friend.

There is a reason why really good snipers are really good: position, preparedness, and dogged calm. Hunter has the height, and she is laid out flat. There's nothing to her profile, and bullets aimed at her - even well-aimed - slam into roof edge, brick and stone, or sail over her. Frankly only utterly impossible shots like Domino's ungodly luck could drill a shot back through the exact trajectory and hit her scope and her head.

But the most annoying part is that a standard rifle round, even to the head, is just going to make Hunter angry.

Shots continue, drilling one rifleman after another. She does not go to full-auto, because it's a reckless waste of ammunition. She waits, she chooses her shots, and she does not miss. And she knows better than most: bullets move faster then the sound of their shot. There's no warning to be had. Just pain. That and perhaps the scent of Hunter's own blood.

Come and get some.

Getting thrown through the air is easy for just about anyone. Landing, especially in such a manner that you can jump into the fight, requires … specialties.

In Armor's case, it's her mutant powers; even before she lands, she's armored up the way *she* does it, a psychokinetic construct manifesting around her body like the armor from whence her codename is derived. So she's not worried about the impact; she's more concerned about making sure she lands on her feet - but a little care now, and a lot of practice before, make that a simple matter.

So if the simian-looking fellow figured Armor would be easy to take down, he's in for a surprise. He DOES get her from behind - and the impact still jars her 'forward,' by a step or two, before the eight-foot-tall PK construct (and the five-foot-something girl inside it) turn to engage her assailant. "I don't know what they did to your head along with your body," Armor calls out, "but we're here to rescue you - !"

If she can turn far enough, she'll aim an elbow drop down on the simian mutant's shoulder - nothing critically injurious (she hopes; she's holding back) but it should at least get him off his feet, and maybe knock a bit of the fight out of him. She makes a point of getting back to *her* feet as quickly as possible; no point in staying down any longer than she has to.

Whatever that reverbium is, it seems like Colossus wants no part of it. At Hank's words, Piotr begins to go for Nick, but the attack upon him makes for other ideas and he's forced to detour. As the wolf woman approaches, he gets that shot of adrenaline that comes along with the fight or flight response and bounds into action. As the claws come up, Piotr kneels and simultaneously pushes the wolf woman's arm upwards, sending the claws whizzing past his chest harmlessly. The maneuver, however, leaves him open for the leg sweep, which connects with his body as soon as he straightens. Normally, it would be no significant problem, but these are surely not normal circumstances.

As Gwens webs shoot out, the labcoats are blinded though they grab the webs and tug. Spider-Woman should be shocked by the strength they exhibit and she's got two of them trying to pull her towards them.

A little yelp from Dazzler as she realises she is being shot at. Though it ends up not being needed, she manages to throw up a shield of light to protect herself. A nod to Hank's words. Blasting the area with sonics or light are going to put off everyone…and the animal mutants may still be able to smell them anyway; even though she washed this morning. Holding off from shooting lasers from her fingertips, for now, she lifts her arm into the air, sending her power upwards. In the air above the building, hopefully able to be seen for miles, is a huge arrow pointing down. Flashing in all the colors of the rainbow. Any help might not get here before the fight is over but no one will be using this hideaway again.

Nick launches forward into a loping run that uses his arms as much as his legs. He makes for an open spot in the parking lot and for a moment it might look like he's trying to make a run for it. He isn't. He's just angling to line up Spider Woman and Dazzler. It isn't easy but the moment he has them even vaguely in the same direction he turns and lets out a bark.

Not just any bark though. A very loud bark. Some might call it a 'super bark.'

Whatever one chooses to call it, it creates a visible compression wave in the air that rips up the concrete and sends chunks of it flying as it barrels in a widening cone toward the two heroines though admittedly Spider-Woman is closer by a fair bit than Alison is.

Prepared for the sudden strength from the labcoat brigade, Gwen is not. She releases her webstrands, but not before getting pulled straight off her feet — rather uncharacteristic for a spider, but there it is.

Now her danger sense tingles. Thanks for that.

The Spider-Woman rolls to the side to avoid getting stomped on, and bounces back up to her feet. "Didn't anyone ever tell you steroids are bad?" She backs off a step, and spares a quick glance in the direction (some of) the others are coming from. "HEY! BEAST! COLOSSUS!" she yells. "These guys are, like, REALLY STRONG." With the message delivered, she jumps forwards again and aims a solid uppercut to one of the scientists, followed by a low, circular kick to the other one.

Her real target is the clipboard. All their experimental notes? Yes please. She wades in, eager to sieze an opportunity to snatch it.

Well, that is right up until her danger goes off for a second time — but once again, it's too late. What gives? She's just trying to snatch the clipboard when she looks up, just in time to see sheer sonic and concrete hell towards her and Dazzler — and she gets caught right in the middle of it. For the second time today she's now off her feet and skidding on her side across the pavement, and this time with some blood to show for it, too.

Seeing the others turning to fight back isn't a surprise to Shayera, she'd have been shocked if they were THAT poorly prepared. Even Isis turning and aiming her strangely metal-covered claws at her wings isn't entirely a surprise. She's imagined this scenario before, and honestly it's one she's had training for back in her home city.

Keeping her trajectory consistent, just a scant moment before she and Isis will run up against each other — and hopefully faster than the cat lady can compensate for — she tilts her wings just enough to come in at the feline a little lower and little more to one side than she had been, her hands reaching to grab Isis by the wrists.

If it isn't enough, or if Isis can compensate fast enough, Hank is going to have his work cut out for him later. And it will NOT be pretty.

"Gah!" The super bark is loud, Hank isn't even the target of the attack and it seriously impacts him. He hisses in pain, his ears bleeding as he staggers to one knee, the bullet punching into his chest and drive the air from his lungs as well. Still, he's not one to give up in the face of adversity - quite the opposite, actually. He leaps with a fair amount of wobble, but still manages enough lift to land near the scientists.

Indeed, he draws on the fury within him, unleashing his inner beast to live up to his name as Beast, and the pain? Yeah, distant thing. His reason blunted as he lets his rage take center stage.

With a bellowing roar, he brings both massive arms down on the Scientist who has been giving the orders, or he tries to at least. Swift, and stronger by half again his usual, this will likely be a Very Bad Thing(tm).

Now, some - perhaps most - of the people present will not likely have seen Hank do this, but the pain, the anger…yeah, they cut through him.

Hopefully he won't have any regrets or the need to do wing surgery for Shay again.

That arrow in the sky? Yeah, it is like advice 'Hit HERE!', Beast will oblige!

That bark, however, is bad indeed. Twice in a week, now, Hunter's ears are shattered, blood vessels in her eyes exploded, and blood runs from her. Blinded and deafened, she cannot sufficiently target her rifle by scent alone.

She was trying to be merciful. The gunshots would be quick, clean kills, relatively painless. But that is not to be, anymore. With a guttural growling snarl she can feel but cannot hear, the sniper lays down her rifle and then uses arms and bunched legs and hips to throw herself bodily over the edge of the roof line, trusting her instincts to tuck and roll just before she hits the ground, and then uncoil as she rolls to leap over the fence into the parking lot, aiming her fury by scent alone and spurred on by agony and rage. No more quick, clean kills; this is going to be up close, personal brutality and ferocious force.

Hunter may be able to keep herself from ripping the limbs off of Isis and Nick as known allies. One can hope. But the other prisoners are likely to be less lucky. And their torturers? No luck at all, and no mercy to be found.

With Nicks bark still echoing across the lot, the wolf woman follows up even as she grapples at Colossus, arms swept harmlessly up and away. She howls … the sound as Nicks bark, aimed right at the big metal man. Cement at his feet, explodes about him. At the very least, it's going to make it difficult to move.

Ali's blast of lights get a howl from the scientists and the one remaining gunman. It's certainly created some confusion at least. Though Alison now has to deal with the results of Nicks howl.

As Hunter leaps, the gunmen drops his rifle, his skin rippling as fur flows over it. His face elongates into a wolfen muzzle my grandma, what big teeth you have. Hunter has barely hit the ground when he lands on her - a fury of reverbium coated claws and teeth. Hunter might have met her match.

Shayera's tactic works, putting Isis just slightly off kilter. The slim feline twists though, as Shay catches her wrists Isis *yowls* right in Shays' face. As loud as Nicks and the wolf womans, it creates a sonic blast that should disorient the flying woman. Which might be a problem, because she's still caught fast. Unfortunately for Shay, it doesn't stop Isis' feral anger rolling out over the area.

The scientists are still dealing with the webs but Nicks bought them some time at least.

Hanks fury might just feed Isis' - which could be a problem - and the simian man, grunts in pain. Even as Hank brings his massive fists down again and again, the ape-man rolls and sets his teeth in his arm. His … reverbium plated … teeth. OW.

Colossus scurries to his feet just as the wolf-woman screams directly into his face. He lets out a yell of his own, but this is one of pain and he brings his giant chromed hands up to cover his ears. The pain is overwhelming and causes the Russian to lash out violently with his arms.

An errant backhand is aimed right for the wolf woman, as if she is an alarm that Colossus is desperately trying to shut off.

Nick can make as much noise as he likes, it only powers Dazzler up after all, but the flying chunks of concrete are another thing entirely. The giant arrow in the sky slowly fading away as she focuses on her shield. The slabs of concrete burning up as it hits it, though she does also get knocked back from the impact. That was not nice.

Glowing with her power from all the noise, Dazzler's fingers shoot lasers from the tip. She doesn't want to hurt Nick…or any of the mutants…but if she has to, she will. As a compromise, she aims her searing pin point beams at anything that looks silver on Nick. The parts that shouldn't be there.

With her projected exo-armor and her own blood up, Armor has to put a certain amount of attention into holding back. If her simian-looking opponent doesn't have a reinforced physiology, she could easily - *too* easily - reduce him to a bloody smear, and she really does not want to do that, triply so after saying they're here to rescue the experimental subjects, mutants or otherwise.

She's back on her feet before the simian guy is, but the fact that he comes at her *again* means that either she didn't knock enough of the fight out of him, or whatever's driving him is too powerful for him to have heard what she said. Or maybe it was the roaring and howling that drowned out her promise of help; it's certainly left Armor's own ears ringing to the point she can't really hear much.

Either way, though, actions speak louder (as it were) than words. "Don't hold this against me," she says, perhaps pointlessly, before reducing her armor's size - down to six feet, almost to the level that she's 'wearing' it rather than simply hovering - and lunging forward, right arm outstretched to her side in a textbook lariat, trying to dump the simian guy on his back so hard that the wind gets knocked out of him. Hopefully she can do that without cracking anything more vital than ribs - but uncracked ribs would be even better, as long as he *stays* down.

It doesn't take much more to put her opponent down for the count; Hisako takes one more look around, making sure the situation is safe before she risks de-armoring.

Nick, foolishly, ignores Alison and goes for Spider-Woman. He is not, in honesty, even at his best fast enough to keep up with her. Maybe if he can land a punch it goes badly for the masked heroine but with her danger sense is he really EVER going to do that?

Well the silvery claws are certainly nasty looking. They'd probably hurt to be hit by. But as he moves in on the bleeding arachnid-based-hero he takes several laser hits on his fingers and throat. That quite hurts. It doesn't break whatever it is that's on him - and given that one of them is apparently embedded in his throat that's a good thing - but it does make him stop and howl with pain. Fortunately the blast wave from that is directed up and away from everyone else.

Fortunately also, it means he's vulnerable and unable to defend himself.

The initial sonic attacks from both Nick and the wolf woman were aggravating to Shayera, but ultimately far enough away for her to force herself mentally past them. Isis yowling right in her face, however…

It's impossible to fly while disoriented, and with the way Shay has clamped onto the cat lady's wrists, they're in for a rough landing. But maybe that's not entirely a bad thing. Rather than trying to grip the feline more closely to protect her from the brunt of them falling out of the air — really not very far, only about ten or fifteen feet — she furls her wings tightly against her back to protect them and tries to angle the fall so Isis hits the ground first. And if the feline breaks Shay's fall in the process, good. Fewer bruises to deal with later.

Gwen shakes her head, and takes a moment to clear the cobwebs before rising back up to one knee. "AAaergh," she grunts, reaching up to touch her fingertips to her temples, "That was awful. What's the deal, danger-sense? I thought you were supposed to warn me about-WOAH!" And then there's a big wolf-man (man-wolf?) bearing down on her again. She springs to her feet and backflips away, landing in a crouch just out of reach again.

"Look it's been fun, and I'm sure you're a nice guy when you're not… whatever they did to you, but—" She bounces back again, landing just out of reach, "For now, I'm going to have to web you, okay?"

She makes good on that offer, ducking under a punch and firing a webline at his arm. She secures it to the ground, then leaps around behind him, using another webline to secure a leg.

And then the other leg, with a punch delivered to the back of the calf, just below the knee. "You need to sit down," she adds. "We'll get you some help, I promise."

Gwen does her best at that point to just… web Nick up as liberally as she can. "Don't think I've forgotten you," she adds, raising her voice for the benefit of the scientists — right before she sends a webstrand for that clipboard. Seriously, gotta have it.

When the scientist wolfs out, Hank gets bit, a lot. He snarls and howls like…well…a beast, but that doesn't stop him even a little bit, blood running from his ears the man's eyes are almost literally glowing with fury, back lit by the rainbow coruscation of the arrow until it fades.

Hank /hates/ this. But pain and need…

Presently a berserk, he pummels the wolfen-scientist who was giving the orders, massive arms driven like pile drivers into her, one-two, one-two, One-Two! The woman is tough, strong too, but that beating leaves her battered to the point she is driven unconscious, and reverts. Some dim part of Hank's mind registers 'not furry', and bleeding from gunshot and fangs rending resilient flesh…he does not continue the beating, though it is a close thing.

At the end of the day, Hank is not a killer. Not at his core, and this time he manages to pull back, stumbling, and then looking about to see if there's more foes to fight. "Nick…Isis…please…FIGHT this!" He exhorts them. Isis in particular - he focuses, thinking, emoting, remember her, their friendship, their trust. Moments that show these things…her delight in the Hello Kitty jacket, sharing ice cream by the pool, all of the memories /his nearly perfect memory/ can recall. Perhaps if SHE breaks free, if SHE remembers…she can stop the others? He can only hope.

Beset by tooth and claw, Hunter fights back, knife burying into the wolf-creature's side as the rest of her strikes out as well to match, with incredible might and fury. The greater her pain, the greater her anger … and somehow, the greater her size, and strength, and resistance?

Cloth fills out. Always loosely clothed in oversized, threadbare garments, Hunter now fills them out, and then tears free of them as her body grows. Five-foot and nine inches tall normally, she rapidly expands, even as she bleeds out.

As their rolling, twisting fight continues, Hunter the woman, the warrior is replaced with something truly terrible to behold, a creature out of some hellscape dimension: half a Siberian tigress, half a woman, and all fur, claws, fangs and rage. Reverbium claws and teeth may penetrate her magically resistant hide, but her might is prodigious … enough, perhaps, to literally rip arms from shoulders, jaws from sculls, and heads from spines.

Amur Khatun is most definitely angry enough to try.

The wolf-woman is strong, the howl is terrible but Colossus fixes that with his well placed back hand. A ball of grey fur goes flying across the lot to land with a CRUNCH against the wall of the building. Sliding down the wall, there's a whimper and then nothing. She's out…

The simian certainly doesn't have reinforced physiology, even if he is strong and his claws and fangs made of reverbium. Still trying to bite Armor, even as they grapple, he's no match for the woman when she strangles him and puts him on his back. He's knocked out.

Spider-Woman, despite being distracted by Nick, manages to snag that tablet at last. It comes flying back to her - and now her Spider Sense does go off. Have you been hit in the head by one of those things?

The now wolfed-out guard is driven to his back as Amur Khatun makes her appearance. It's a dreadful fight - fur and blood go flying. At one point, he manages to clamp his jaws about her throat - it will hurt - but her strength is too much, Amur Khatun's fury too strong. He's left a battered, bloody mess on the ground by the time she is done.

Hanks scientist doesn't stand a chance against Beast. The other scientist has taken to his heels - he's not sticking around for this.

Shayera's dive has Isis grapping hold. She doesn't even try to get free - maybe that's because of the pained "ALPHA!!!" she yells when Nick is hurt. But that's all she has time for as Shayera lands them on the concrete. Yes, Isis does break the bird womans fall - that's going to HURT. A lot.

She's still growling though, under Shay, trying to get free…

Once it seems that most of the battle is over, Piotr runs over towards Beast, a look of worry on his face. He'd noticed how, throughout the battle, Hank had taken shot after shot. "My friend, are you alright?" he asks, reaching out towards his friend, eager to see if he needs medical attention.

Yep, that seems to be everyone: the bad guys more or less subdued, the good guys *relatively* intact, and those good guys who got turned against their friends nestled semi-comfortably in the overlap of the Venn diagram thus charted. "Spider-Woman," asks Armor, "do you have a moment to web this guy up? Just in case he doesn't stay unconscious long enough to get him to …"

She trails off. "Where *are* we going to take them, Beast?" she asks her fuzzy blue mentor. "Not sure if the clinic's the best place for the 'subjects,' especially if they wake up violent during treatment."

And now that the fighting is over, Armor is doing her best to calm her emotions and project that calmness for Isis to 'read.' She's worried for her friends, naturally enough, but Armor is trying to be 'reassuring' in spite of that. Hopefully it helps - and if it brings Isis back to her senses a little, out of whatever control the bad guys implanted, all the better.

"Isis, damnit, snap out of it!" Shay knows better than to let go of those hands, she's felt those claws once already and that was before they'd been coated in metal. Punching is right out. So, she opts for that tried and true fighting tactic she only learned after arriving in this Grounder city and starting to work alongside the local police officers. One of their instructors even took the time to teach how to do so 'correctly', so she'd not injure herself as much or more than others.

She headbutts Isis. She's not gentle about it. "STAY down," she growls at Isis.

Bloody and ragged, but increasingly able to see and hear - hooray healing factor! - the now nearly fifteen foot tall figure of Amur Khatun as a biped rises from the shredded, dismembered remnants of her opponent, nose, eyes and ears scanning for any further opponents. Her roar of fury and triumph when unleashed echoes across most of Mutant Town, though no cement was harmed in the making of this roar.

Fleeing scientists, though, are prey on the hoof. And no tigress is going to let that go. She bounds after said scientist quite eagerly. Amur is just as much a huntress as Hunter herself.

Wait. Did someone want to discuss all this? Yeah, sorry. Words and Amur Khatun are even greater strangers than they are to Hunter.

Whatever little Dazzler did, it seems to have helped. Their foes may have fled but there is still a huge building right there that may be full of more opponents. And they barely got through this lot. "We should get going" she suggests to anyone who may listen. "Take who we have and get out of here before reinforcements arrive. Not sure if anyone saw the arrow to come help." A huge multi-colored arrow in the sky, but only there briefly because of Nick. "C'mon, let's get out of here."

What's that? Danger-sense is finally paying rent again? Just in time for Gwen to catch a… tablet. Yeah. Thanks for nothing. She rapidly stuffs the offending item into her backpack, and shoulders the bag once more as she strolls across the battlefield, approaching Hank. "That was… different," she comments, clasping her hands behind her back. "I wasn't expecting all of that when I heard there was trouble over here." She glances around, watching as people say things like 'snap out of it' and whatnot. "Wait, are these—"

The Spider-Woman is interupted by, of all things, her cellphone receiving a text message. And then another. And then about eight more in rapid succession.

"—Darnit, I'm late," she gasps, and backs away a step. "I'll call you later! Don't do anything silly without me!" And then she turns and runs for it.

Battered and a bit bloodied, Hank leans on Piotr a moment, but only a moment. He has a healing factor, yes, but it is is a match to the bonfire that is Amur Khatun's. He'll be sore for a while, healed in a day or so. "I will be fine, droog." He says to his friend and fellow X-man. Hank will grip Piotr's shoulder, and then move towards the fallen, he shudders at the damage -he- inflicted on the scientist, he beat her to a pulp. He'll never be comfortable with such things, indeed, he can't meet anyone's eyes for the shame of it.

With Nick webbed up, Hank sighs and nods. He'll move to Where Isis is, if she's still struggling he'll do his best to get through to her…if that doesn't work, he will help restrain her, knock her out if he can…if it is needed. "Hawkgirl, we need to get them to my lab…but I can't take you there with us." Because of the institute rules. He can't risk bringing this to RESCUE, so…the Institute will be the only choice that is viable. "Piotr, you're on Nick, Hisako, on Isis." A sgih. "I will drive."

He notes Spider-Woman's departure, and nods to her and Alision's too. He'll be getting in touch for sure, but for now…they need to get the injured to much needed medical care.

Headbutting Isis stuns her into silence. Is she out? Perhaps. She's taken a beating. Hank might recognise a lot of her behaviour as similar to the young mutant who was rescued by Nick and X-Men three years ago. Except now, there's even more of an edge to it.

There's still mop up work to be done, but the biggest threat seems to be handled.


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