Bang, Not A Whimper

Participants:

cat_icon.gif gillian_icon.gif kazimir_icon.gif kent_icon.gif peter2_icon.gif

NPCs provided ably by Staten

Scene Title Bang, Not A Whimper
Synopsis A Monday night in Greenwich Village proves to not just be another Monday night. Or does it?
Date October 20, 2008

Greenwich Village

In a time that seems long ago, Greenwich Village was known for its bohemian vibe and culture, the supposed origin of the Beat movement, filled with apartment buildings, corner stores, pathways and even trees. There was a mix of upper class and lower, commercialism meeting a rich culture, and practically speaking, it was largely residential.

Now, it's a pale imitation of what it used to be. There is a sense of territory and foreboding, as if the streets aren't entirely safe to walk. It isn't taken care of, trash from past times and present littering the streets, cars that had been caught in the explosion lie like broken shells on the streets nearest the ground zero. Similarly, the buildings that took the brunt of the explosion are left in varying degrees of disarray. Some are entirely unusable, some have missing walls and partial roofs, and all of the abandoned complexes have been looted, home to squatters and poorer refugees.

As one walks through the Village, the damage becomes less and less obvious. There are stores and bars in service, and apartment buildings legitimately owned and run by landlords. People walk the streets a little freer, but like many places in this scarred city… anything can happen. Some of the damage done to buildings aren't all caused by the explosion from the past - bullet holes and bomb debris can be seen in some surfaces, and there is the distinct impression that Greenwich Village runs itself… whether people like it that way or not.


It's a Monday night in Greenwich Village. There have been better times…and better places. The Village is a pale shadow of what it was, pre-blast. Run down, looted, damaged…it's very much a bad part of town. Blustery fall winds chase through the streets, and the sounds of the city are all about, the ever-present bustle of New York combined with the occasional, semi-distant sounds of the gangs and violence in this part of town.

It's not a place to come socialise, that's for certain. And so when two young adults suddenly appear in a dreary corner of the street, it's certainly not deliberate. They make no sound, just simply flickering into reality like a film edit. Kent lets go of Gillian's hands quickly, turning his shoulder to her to cast a look around the street. "Man," he says, tone one of complaint, as he casts a look this way and that. "I coulda sworn this was the right street. And no, I'm not gonna stop and ask for directions, I'll get it eventually. Just gimme a minute."

"You know how taxis had that handy little computer in the back seat that let the passanger map out a route? You could use one of those," Gillian says, once they're settled into place, looking around. She's dressed for the weather outside, but she can't help but pull her black coat tighter around her, so she's just a little warmer. Wary eyes look around, and she looks back at him, "I'm not even sure what part of the city we're in— I don't tend to go this part of town anymore— it all looks different than I remember from before."

Seated upon a worn out and graffiti's bench on the side of the road, a wearied looking old man takes a break from what has been a long night of walking. Across his lap, a black-lacquered cane rests with one hand atop it, light from the flickering street lamp overhead reflecting off of the steel wolf's head at the top. his eyes are downcast, staring hollowly at the concrete and pavement, watching a single reddish-brown leaf scuttle its way across the street. He's transfixed, in a way, on the leaf's meandering movements from one side of the road to the other on the cool October wind. His presence here, in one of the worst neighborhoods of the city is out of necessity, following a nagging feeling that has lingered since the last fateful time he had set foot in Greenwich Village, a feeling that he let something slip through his fingers.

There is a crinkle as the old man folds a copy of the New York Times in half, reading the headlines, "SENATOR NATHAN PETRELLI SCORES BIG AT DEBATE" His grayed brows furrow for a moment, head canting to the side, looking up from the text to the two youths across the street. His eyes scan down one side of the road, then the other, and then focus back on the two again. The paper is re-folded and layd down over his cane, and the old man's soft blue eyes watch them, the yellowed and flickering light from the street-lamp overhead, unflatteringly highlighting his wrinkled and sagging face, deepening the shadows of the pockmarked scarring on his cheeks and the crease of his brow.

Dressed for the stage, Cat makes her way toward the Lower East Side. There's a gig to play, so she's emerged from the Upper West Side, skirted the Ruins of Midtown, and entered the Village. She's got some time before she needs to appear onstage, can afford to delay a bit and stop here to look around. Her car, a beat up Neon from the mid-90s chosen to not draw much attention from thieves, pulls to a stop not far from where Gillian and Kent appear. Her favorite car is hidden elsewhere, not something she'd drive to places like her destination. The five foot eight inch tall brunette opens her door, places her black boots with the two inch heels on solid pavement, and starts to look around slowly. The rest of her is dressed for performing. Dark tank top and jeans, to emulate a panther.

The silence of the night…and one of the worst parts of town, is suddenly broken. Broken by the sounds of what sounds like a small explosion. There's no pyrotechnics, but a definite loud *WHOOM*. Along with the sounds of broken glass. Oh, and the screaming. Mustn't forget that. Car alarms begin shrilling, set off by the blast. It's not far distant; just up around the corner.

"Well I'm not actually a taxi, taxis aren't perpetual touri— " And that's really all the comeback that Kent has time for before the sound of the explosion disrupt the silence. "F— cr— crackers," is all he mutters, searching for a suitable swear word and finding none as he semi-ducks, instinctively, turning towards the source. "What the hell was that?" And for whatever reason, he's taking steps in that direction.

"Holy shit," Gillian curses, not even sugar coating her swear, looking toward the blast and then backing near the not-taxi that brought her this hair. Unnaturally black bangs fall into her heavily make-up covered eyes as she looks over at him suddenly. "Did you seriously just say crackers?" It's said with a hint of amazement— more than a hint really, before she looks back in the direction of the blast, the yelling, the alarms. "You don't pick uneventful places to drop off at, do you?" She adds, keeping close to him, and almost all of her attention on the explosion not too far away.

The sound of the explosion doesn't stir the old man from his bench any more than the chill autumn wind does. He turns, towards the sound of the explosion, head canted to the side, and for a moment there is a flicker of a proud smile on his face. What could, in his mind, be Ethan's handiwork only brings a sense of pride to him. Pride that is smothered down by his stoic demeanor. Folding the newspaper yet again, he takes hold of his cane and slowly rises up from a seated position in the slow and labored way in which a man with a bad back would. His hand steadily holds on to the wolf's head at the top of the cane, newspaper tucked under one arm. He looks back towards the sound of the explosion, slow and deliberate steps interspersed with the clink of his cane's steep tip on the sidewalk. His eyes, though, shift to the side to view the young couple across the street. They, more so than the woman who appeared with a car, have his momentary attention, in his slow and steady pace towards the sounds of destruction.

Her comparison of the current village with images of the area before the Nuking of Manhattan doesn't last long. Explosions and noises which accompany them draw Cat's attention toward the source. Her eyes sweep across Gillian and the man with her, noting the match with someone she remembers being present on another occasion of unexpected destruction, as they move to spot whatever can be spotted from where she stands. The older man hasn't yet drawn her attention, as he's not between her and the event at hand.

The situation, as it comes into the eyes of others…it's one of those nightmares of the "ordinary" person. There are broken windows, dented cars, screaming and running people. And two…people? Who are not running and screaming. Both are dressed in scuffy, tattered attire. Both seem in a frenzy…shrieking and flailing at anything at hand. But not running in terror; apparently lashing out at anything around them. Oh, and both apparently Evolved. One seems to have a powerful acid spraying from his hands, substances dissolving in wide arcs with his wild flailing. The other is the source of the boom, apparently. His body begins to glow, and then emits a pulse of energy, lashing out and blasting things around him. The two are on opposite sides of the streets, and separated by about a block.

Over his shoulder, Kent quips, "Well I do try to keep things interesting, who needs a bar?" His gaze flickers over the other woman dressed all in black, and even that of the older gentleman who seemed for a moment to look their way— but inevitably, the teleporter's attention is veered to wild, raggedly dressed men, especially when another explosion sounds out. "Oh, my god," Kent says, stopping in his tracks and simply staring at the horrific sight, hands up to shield his face when the radioactive man blasts things in his path, despite being out of range. "Why are they— ?" Destroying everything, apparently.

"Son of a bitch," Gillian says, still sticking close to the man who might be her best escape route out of this dangerous area. Her arm go up to shield her eyes, sleeve falling down enough to reveal a yin/yang tattoo that she'd gotten the night another such burning man happened to get to close to her. "This shit is what causes assholes like those who came into my library to do what they do." She gives a sharp look at the taller red haired man. "You better be refilled and ready to get us out of here before they get too close," she whispers harshly, loud enough it should carry over most of the noise at least.

The old man stops not when those two ravaging forces come into view, but when he manages to pause by a newspaper box on the roadside. Graffiti covered as it is, it serves the purpose of putting the copy of the newspaper he was carrying atop it. His eyes follow the one sweeping his hands with the arcs of acid spewing forth from them, then around to the public. He snorts, loudly, and taps his cane on the sidewalk, leveling his stare at the one on his side of the street, the man emitting shockwaves of energy. His head tilts back, assessing the pair for a moment, a thin smile curling across his lips.

His free hand moves into his jacket, removing what looks like an overly-large cell phone, an older model Thuraya network satellite phone. He places it to one ear, tilting his head to the side as a shockwave blows across the street, sending concrete debris and glass blowing to either side of him. Words, muffled and lost over the sounds of screaming are spoken in, followed by a look of puzzlement. Into the jacket the phone goes again, and those gray-blue eyes drift from one figure to the next. Then, with a pleased smile, retrieves his newspaper and tucks it under one arm, turning to walk in the opposite direction of the sounds of destruction, away from the crazed people he could stop. These things happen at the best of times.

This isn't good at all. Not only are they destroying things, they're adding to potential public fear and giving ammo to anyone who believes the Linderman Act is a good thing. Cat won't disagree these two need to be locked up forever, she'd just argue they can be tried, convicted, and imprisoned under laws that were already on the books prior to that Act. Her gaze rests on the pair as they move along, the faces and details are committed to memory quickly; an easy thing for Cat. And she moves to pop open the trunk of her car. Her bow and several arrows are in it. One is picked out and strung in the bow. Cat turns sideways, closes the eye not needed to fire, takes aim on the radioactive one's chest, holds her breath, and lets loose. She hopes to strike his heart and end his destructive career.

Both of them are shrieking incoherently. The destruction continues to build up, as another pulse booms out from the one man, denting cars, throwing people too slow to flee about, shattering windows. The other grapples with a woman who'd fallen, as her screams fill the air, her skin beginning to melt away under his touch. The arrow flies through the air…and strikes true, apparently. Or true enough. It catches the man in the chest. His features twist in befuddled confusion, and he falls to the ground.

"Like I said, you need to gimme a— " Tonight is the night of interrupted sentiments, it seems, because an arrow whooshes by. In all honesty, Kent is shocked for a moment, staring as the man goes down with an arrow in his chest. The teleporter turns his head to look towards the woman wielding those weapons. "Are you kidding?" he asks, without really expecting an answer— the shrill screams of the injured are getting his attention. "We'll get out of here," he promises Gillian, even as he's moving towards the injured woman. "Just stay close!"

It's one of the recent blasts that does it. Gillian stumbles back and catches herself against a wall of a building, looking startled and worried, and seeing the arrow flying by. "What happened to guns?" she asks no one, voice a little shrill now, especially since… "What the fuck? Are you trying to be a hero now?" Her escape route is moving closer to them, toward an injured woman, and telling her to stay close. She puts a hand over her mouth, trying to stifle the urge to vomit at the sight, before she moves after him. "You better not get me killed," she murmurs, even as she follows after, warily looking at them both, and hoping that Robin Hood manages to get another shot or two off.

The sounds of screaming and explosions can be heard for blocks, but the sound of helicopters overhead covering this tragedy indicate that the local news media has already been covering the chaos for some time now. Spotlights shine down through the night on the two targets, even as fleeing crowds of citizens flow away from the disaster area as fast as they can. News travels fast, and when word arrived at the Company about what was happening, there was one person who was both ready and able to respond to the crisis at hand.

There's a streak of light in the night's sky, something like a small comet burning its way against the black and the stars. It arcs around one of the buildings in a way unbecoming of a meteorite, then emerges in a blazing streak of fire at near street level, blazing past Cat where she stands by her car with a wave of thermal wind. The flames explode outwards as the comet is revealed to be a man ablaze and not a celestial event. The explosion of fire from the sudden stop flares outwards from all sides, a rippling curtain of heat and smoke rising off of his shoulders. He touches down on the street, looking at the one man laying on his back with an arrow in his chest, then back to Cat. The scar across his brow, that look in his eyes, she knows it's Peter.

Gillian recognizes the man in the suit as well, the one she saw freaking out in the lobby of Dorchester towers. He turns to the man pinning the screaming woman down and raises a hand, "Stop!" There's no response, no sane response, merely the wild and incoherent shrieking of what amount to little more than a wild animal. He takes a step forward, holding out his hand as the acidic man is hurled from the woman's body, striking a lamp-post and sending him down to the ground. His focus turns to the one struck by the arrow, lifting him up in the air with not much more than a stern glance, and sending him careening over towards the other. He turns to look back at Cat, hesitates, then shouts, "Somebody get that woman back!" Then he falls silent, listening to the chaos, and watching the figure he tossed aside. It was only a strong enough force to discourage him, hopefully that's all it takes.

The wounded woman looks up to Kent (and by extension Gillian), as they comes running up towards her. "My god, it's burning it's BURNING help me!!" Indeed, the acid is still sizzling at her flesh. The arrow-shot man coughs up a bit of blood, another bright pulse-and-burst emanating from his fallen form…and then it stops, as does his breathing. Acid man is tossed backwards, trying to scramble up to his feet, still flailing wildly, the acid gouting from his hands, hissing at the sidewalk and the surrounding cars.

What the. The blazing missile of a man that suddenly appears is almost scarier than the rabid Evolved that had captured Kent's attention earlier. He stops from where he was running towards the injured lady, looking back at the scarred man with wide eyes - especially when the two deranged villains seem to start flying, by this man's whim. He actually starts to reach a hand towards Gillian, to get them the hell out of here - but it's that command that reminds him of what he was doing. "No such thing as heroes," he finally replies to Gillian, moving towards the injured woman and coming to kneel beside her as she pleads with him. "I know, I…" It's a gruesome sight, and he finds himself taking a breath. Okay. "God, I need— I need something to stop the— acid— You don't have powder on you or anything, do you?" Kent asks Gillian. Hell, she might. She's female, they carry around lots of weird stuff. Even as he says this, Kent is attempting to grab the poor woman, to steer her towards the sidewalk and generally out of the way.

As the flames roll off of his shoulders and eventually subside, Peter's footsteps are drowned out by the sounds of screaming and crumbling concrete from the buildings hit by the blast. Peter halts, tilting his head to the side and raising one brow as he scritinizes the dazed man spewing acid from his palms. Suddenly, his expression shifts, a horrified look in his eyes, and he focuses to the one struck by the arrow, making that same intense and inquisitive expression, mouth slowly opening in a dawning look of terror. Peter takes a step back at first, overwhelmed by whatever it was he just experienced. Then, snapping his gaze to Cat, she heard his voice in her mind, Cat, christ. These people aren't rampaging, they're hurt. I — I looked into their minds, they're in incredible pain. I… Dear God they're screaming for help. Just — Just try and do crowd control. The Company will be here within twenty minutes.

Peter's focus immediately moves to the man with the arrow in his chest, and there's a sudden flicker and a rush of air as he flashes from one location to another, appearing crouched at the man's side with a hand on his shoulder. Peter narrows his eyes, furrowing his brow as he concentrates, and the man and his body vanish in an instant, whisked off in a rush of air to places unknown. There's a conflicted look on his face as Peter rises to his feet, looking to the last one standing. He takes a few long steps towards the one spewing acid, brow lowered, and for once he has no idea what to do.

Fire falls from the sky. Gillian can't help but look up, giving a 'oh crap, what now?' face as her hair falls out of her eyes. She's still covering her mouth with it solidifies into a flying man on fire— who looks familiar. The scar is really what does it more than anything else, but the fire as well, really. She remembers him. And she's not sure she likes it. Glancing back to where he speaks, she recognizes another face. Is the wind woman here too? Not in sight, but… she's getting yelled at by a hero. "What? Powder— yeah…" she reaches into her bag as she hurries closer, warily watching the man in the suit and the acid guy and hoping they keep a marginal distance at least as she pulls out a powder bottle. "Here you go." She glances back towards flaming man, wary. "What is that going to do?" She asks, as she makes the mistake to look at the woman— and the melting skin, and looks like she might throw up again.

She watches the apparently not radioactive one go down as her arrow strikes, hopefully making him unconscious or dead and thus not radioactive anymore. Hey, if Rock were exploding and no other solution existed, Cat would shoot him too. Yeah, he's a friend, but he can regenerate and not dying is more important than friendship anyway.

As she reaches for another arrow, intending to take aim on and fire at the man with the acid, only to find her aim disrupted by the disturbance which is Peter's arrival. She turns away from the heat, only eying the scene again when it's passed, just in time to see what Rock does. There's suddenly no more second target to fire an arrow at, Acid Man has been flung away. And there's a voice in her head. She stands motionless, just staring at him and anyone between them. "He looked in control enough to me. Deliberate actions and attacks. Now they're stopped." She isn't apologizing. But she does take another course of action. Shouting toward Kent and Gillian, in point of fact. "Get out of here, now! You can't help the injured without chemicals to neutralize the acid! Let the pros take over!"

The application of the powder does seem to neutralize the acid, though the sickening melange of cloth and skin, all melted together where he touched her, might indeed be lunch-losing-worthy. The acid man starts back towards the group of people there…and then there's a loud shriek from him, followed by a coughing spasm as he starts to cough up blood to the sidewalk. Not a little bit of blood, either. He dies. Poorly. Screaming, blood starting to pour from various orifices, and finally collapsing, bonelessly, to the ground. The acid puddles a bit more near his hands, then finally stops. The sudden silence is a punctuation to the violence; a sharp contrast.

Kent looks grateful, taking the little bottle of talcum powder from Gillian and opening it up. He liberally begins to sprinkle the stuff over the burning areas, other hand closing around the injured woman's hand in whatever reassurance he can offer her. "It'll put out the acid," he tells Gillian, though not taking his eyes off his work. "That's what I'm hoping. Th-then we need to get her to a hospital to treat the burns, there's only so much first aid teaches you." He looks up just as the woman he doesn't know screams her instructions at them. "Tell me that when you get a gun, Arwen!" he yells back with a flash of anger, tossing the bottle aside and extending a hand to Gillian, keeping the other joined with the injured woman. "Let's go."

When Peter hesitates, and that poor man simply collapses into a bloodied heap on the ground, dissolving before his eyes, the scarred Company agent can only stagger backwards, one hand covering his mouth and his eyes wide. This wasn't what he expected here, from the news broadcasts and the panic at the Company's facility, this wasn't what he was prepared for. He pales, considerably, and Cat's explanation that she had given finally catches up with him, but the shock of her words and her rationalization which would strike Peter a bit more heavily comes as a light slap in the face of the death in front of him. Peter exhales a shuddering breath, reaching down to pick up a cell phone out of his pocket, dialing as he walks towards the sizzling body. "T-This…" He swallows, audibly, "Oh God, this is Agent Petrelli. I… I think the situation's under control. You… you need to get a biochem team down here immediately. Wake Doctor Knutson up, christ," He holds one hand to his head, "I teleported one man into Cell 232, the lead-lined one. He might already be dead. He's… I have no idea…"

"Huh, you actually do know what you're doing," Gillian says with some surprise, though she looks over at the very same woman who cried rape, called the people who the wind lady was attacking dangerous Evolved— and now— well— one of them is flying around on fire. So he'd definitely been an Evolved, though less dangerous than these. Her arm goes up to rub across her forehead and she spots something in the corner of her eye— "Son of a bitch. I broke my watch." What a thing to notice with people dying and getting hurt all around her. She looks over at Kent and nods, "Yeah, let's get out of here." She looks warily at the man on the phone, especially. "Looks like Assface is calling for backup." She holds her hand out to Kent. Flee now.

She won't just let it lie at having shouted instructions toward the pair, no, Cat is walking swiftly toward them. Kent may be evolved, or may not, but she suspects Gillian might have something and be at risk here. She intends to get closer and explain the need for them to be elsewhere more clearly, stopping only when Gillian seems to get that if she doesn't get out of here with her friend she might get stuck in a deep dark hole just for being a witness. Her attention then moves on to Peter, she stares and fires off another thought. "I still trust you, Rock. If that guy I hit is alive, I know you won't let him be a permanent guest of the Company. You'll see to it he gets charged, tried, and locked up legally! No secret bullshit!" Then she's stalking back to her car so she can stash the weapon, get in, and drive away with one last message for Peter. "We need to talk. I'll give you your partner's gun, but I smashed his fake badge."

It's pretty instantaneous. Even if Cat had decided to address them and explain the importance of leaving… they've left. As soon as Kent's hand touches Gillian's, all three — the ginger-blonde man, the gothy girl and the injured victim — vanish from the sidewalk as if they were never there, leaving only a talcum powder bottle and smears of powder and blood behind.

Sirens blare in the distance, blue and red flashing lights coming from some of the streets leading to this intersection, and Peter stands amidst a section of the city surrounded by a building with a third of one corner blown out, stone debris scattered in the street and paper debris blowing in the wind. Panicked crowds have calmed down once the noise stopped, now only the constant thump of news helicopters overhead and the approaching sirens. Lowering the phone from his ear, Peter stares blankly at the molten corpse in front of him, and it's only then that the sounds of screams from more injured people fill the air, and the wailing cries of frightened and hurt bystanders begins to mix with the wailing of sirens. Peter steps over some of the debris, the bottoms of his shoes smoking from the spots of acid he walks through. He stops, turning to Cat with a level stare.

They're sick, Cat. Not crazy. No one's getting tried, they're getting medical attention. Then, after a bit of a scowl, His badge is as real as mine. Keep the gun, you might need it. Turning his gaze back to the bodies, Peter reaches into his jacket, pulling out a Homeland Security badge and clipping it to his lapel as he begins to walk into the more decimated areas where the chaos started, calling out for help, and trying to direct the crowd as best as he can.

This is what helping people is.


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October 20th: What Do You Want?
This is the beginning of a storyline.

Next in this storyline…
Fui Quod Sis

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October 20th: Pinch
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