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Perspectives: Beginnings (Jan '09)

PostPosted: Sat Apr 06, 2013 1:19 am
by Visavis
shaydeswhisper: Perspectives - January: Post here!
Happy New Year 'Cips!

Since it is the start of a new year, I thought a good topic could be beginnings. Just like most of the Perspectives topics this can have different interpertations.

What was your hero like in the beginning? Is there some untold tidbit about their past you'd like to relate to us? Was there some defining moment, perhaps even before they were a hero? Perhaps there are new things happening in their life? Are they taking the beginning steps in a new journey? Entering a new stage of their life?

Also as always feel free to revisit any of the previous topics. I still have a back log of stories I need to write. =-/ Check Mr. Mundane's Perspectives Sticky for a reminder of last years topics.

Re: Perspectives: Beginnings (Jan '09)

PostPosted: Sat Apr 06, 2013 1:20 am
by Visavis
Static Bolter:
"We're lost aren't we."

"We're not lost."

"Then where are we?"

"Under Steel Canyon."

"Steel Canyon isn't that big. God, we could be halfway to Alaska by now, Vince."

Static Bolter sighed as The Black Starbeam turned his head to regard her cooly, the golden glow from his eyes lighting up the cavern they were most definitely lost in, no matter what he said. He turned back and continued on, leaving her no choice but to follow.

The duo had chased some stragglers from a Circle coven into the sewers beneath Steel Canyon; one of their first assignments since registering together officially under the title 'The Reciprocators', and Beam was keen to begin with an exemplary record. They'd moved quickly through the sewer tunnels, catching one along the way, then plunged into a network of caves after the last handful of mages had fled through a gap in the sewer brickwork. Things had slowed down a little after Beth had charged headlong down down a fork and found a sudden drop, tearing up her tights and badly cutting her leg. There'd been no sign of the Circle for some time.

"Honestly dear we've been down here all day. What if my father goes looking for me?"

"It's been no more than an hour and a half, and I doubt your father is going to be looking for you down here." Came the flat reply.

Beth grumbled irritably, her feet skidding on stones in the dark. "Har har, that's not what I meant. I'm supposed to be at class...and either way I've still missed lunch."

"I'll get you a sandwich when we're done."

"Gee thanks dear. Look, can we speed up again? We're never going to catch up to these guys at this rate."

Beam turned his head to look at her again. "Feeling up to it? I thought you'd hurt your leg."

She frowned, twitching. "I'm fine. This is taking too long." Without waiting for an answer she ducked under his arm and zipped quickly up the corridor, pausing to consider two similar looking tunnels by the faint glow of Beam's contact lenses. Eventually she gave up on trying to decide and chose one at random, bolting as quickly as possible over the uneven floor, occasionally slowing to dodge rocky outcroppings.

After a few more minutes of dizzying movement she saw some movement out of the corner of her eye and dove down a side tunnel in pursuit. Three steps and then her foot touched air. "Ohshi--"

The tunnel had opened out into a dark expanse. Beth dropped, her ankle rolling as she touched down on a smooth, oily surface. Her knees buckled and she skidded along into the opposite wall.

"Beth? Beth!" Beam's voice floated down to her from the cave opening. She groaned and sat up.

"I'm here Beam. Beam? I can't see...I need your eyes."

Very faint golden light began moving towards her from across what she could now tell was a large square room. The floor was covered in old machine oil of some sort, and littered with debris. Some of the debris appeared to be moving....She rolled her eyes. "Clockwork. This place is full of Clockwork Beam! They're moving really oddly. Come and have a look."

Beam's head finally appeared in the cave opening, and he hovered down into the room carefully, taking the time to look around. "I've seen this before. They're operating under old orders, probably salvaging, but there's nothing left of any worth. The King must have forgotten about them down here." He held a hand out for Beth, which she took gratefully. She tossed her hair as she stood, flicking oil onto the wall.

"What is this place? It looks like a lab...or a workshop?" She squinted into the darkness, twitching curiously.

"Whatever it was....it must have been pre-war. This looks pretty run down. We ought to report this to City Hall when we check in. But first," Beam pointed at a doorway leading deeper, "Shall we take a tour?"

Re: Perspectives: Beginnings (Jan '09)

PostPosted: Sat Apr 06, 2013 1:25 am
by Visavis
Void Huntress:
"It's been five minutes. You should be awake by now."

The voice was patient but stern. Female.

"You need to open your eyes. You can't hide all day."

A moment to consider the tone of voice. Amused. Bemused? Was there a difference?

Attempted opening of the eyes. Brightness, it hurt to see. A loud clank resounded in the room, and the light intensified.

"I'll just make you miserable if you put things off. I'm rather good at it."

Despite the insistence, the voice still seemed calm. Expectant. Slowly, carefully, sitting up. Bracing with one hand. The light returned to a less searing degree.

"Good, good. Now we're getting somewhere. Sit upright, that's a girl. Now open your eyes. All the way."

Carefully attempting to follow the instructions. Unpleasantness, but adaptation. Looking at.. a reflection? Glass. A one-way glass. Looking about the room.. an interrogation chamber?

Where-- The thought is interrupted almost immediately.

"I see your lips moving, but nothing's coming out. You'll have to vocalize, I can't read your mind."

"whur..." The attempt at speech is a dismal failure. The word is slurred, and sentence is aborted.

"Ah,you aren't quite ready yet. It'll take time. I know the isolation was difficult for you, but you'll recover. I'll be back in an hour."

-----

Time passes.

The chamber is made of painted brick, the lights above are indistinct, behind some kind of grill. The floor is bare concrete. Clean, smooth,but unforgiving. The only furniture in the room is the bed in the center, an old medical bed. The frame has a bit of rust on it, but the sheets on the mattress are clean.

Attempts to see through the window yield nothing, even blocking the light with both hands around the eyes. It isn't long after this that the voice returns.

"You're looking much more coordinated now, good. Are you ready to talk?"

"... w.. where... are.. we?" The words come easier now, but it still takes some time, pushing them through stiff lips.

"Oh, you don't need to worry about that. You'll remember soon enough. Since you seem coherent, let's begin. Who are you?"

"..We --" As soon as the word comes out, the room fills with the crushing light again. Nothing can be seen, and pain is almost visible. This time a horrible noise accompanies the light.

"Get up."

The sensations subside. Fallen to the floor. Slowly, carefully, following directions again. Standing, leaning against the far wall from the window.

"You are one. Alone. You will use 'I', as there is nobody else. There is no 'we'. Again. Who are you?"

"... .. I... I...." The concept is too far away.

"Better. Let me narrow it down for you. What is your name?"

"T-Talia." This comes more readily. The information is known, ready at hand."Talia Es-Esther." A careful intake of breath. "... My name is Talia Esther."

"Very good." The voice is pleased. "Now. How many of you are there?"

"Thr--"

discontinuity

-- on the floor again. Overwhelmed once more. The voice is speaking.

"Get up. I said get up, Talia Esther. Good girl. Now, we're going to keep at this until you get it right. Until you get all of it right. How many of you are there?"

Uncertainty. "... o-one? There.. there is one of me. I.. I am alone."

"Excellent."The voice pauses for a time, reflecting on the matter. "... You can have a five minute break. Think on your answer, Talia Esther."

Re: Perspectives: Beginnings (Jan '09)

PostPosted: Sat Apr 06, 2013 1:31 am
by Visavis
Kaijuko:
Sometimes she wondered why the Council base designers hadn't instituted straight corridors. They relied heavily on ranged weapons, so why hamper that with all these twisting corridors? She wiped the blade of her katana on the uniform of the Adjutant who lay whimpering at her feet and tagged him for medivac to the Zig.

Moving on she headed for what was typically the Base Commanders office, hopefully he hadn't destroyed his files yet.

Two rooms later she was pinned behind a computer terminal by a half dozen Vortex Elite troops and backup was starting to look like a very attractive option. Calling for quick assistance Kaijuko unclipped her cape, she'd always disliked it but hopefully it would make a decent distraction. She knotted one end around the sheath for her Wakazashi and tossed it to one side. A heartbeat later the shooting started and she darted around the other opposite direction, guns were already tracking her movement as she whipped her Wakazashi at them....

Kaijuko barged into the last room to find.... nothing. Unfamiliar equipment hummed around her, but this was definitely not the Base Commanders office. Ignoring the burning pain from four minor bullet wounds she circled the room. Alcoves set into one wall seemed to contain bizarre emitters and strange purplish crystals.

Beam, Bolter and Flux were responding to her call for backup and expected to be on the scene in the next few minutes, she replied that them that she would be waiting for them in the first hub room and poked at the only alcove that seemed to be sealed.

Help...

Spinning Kaijuko fell into a defensive stance and scanned the room.

Help...

"Who's there?"

Turn off the machine... please...

She couldn't tell where the voice was coming from, wasn't even sure she was hearing a voice.

"Who are you?" she sounded silly even asking the question, there was obviously no one else in the room.

A prisoner... please... the machine...

Trying to keep one eye on the room while she looked for an on/off switch Kaijuko reviewed the facts in her head.
1) She was hearing an unidentifiable voice ask for help.
2) She was in a Council base.
3) There was no one else visible in the room.
4) She was injured.

Possible audio hallucinations? Was she delirious from her wounds? That had happened before. Some sort of gas or toxin she has been exposed to without her knowledge? There was a switch next to the alcove. She paused before finally deciding to flip it. The panel slid into a recess to reveal another alcove, only this one contained some sort of floating, glowing... thing. A handful of those purplish crystals lay in the bottom.

Thankyou. Please. I need to talk to Shadowstar, I need a host... My name is Radiant Ebon Glory.

Re: Perspectives: Beginnings (Jan '09)

PostPosted: Sat Apr 06, 2013 1:35 am
by Visavis
AlwaysAPrice:
((Actually wrote most of this last December for the Shield's monthly thread, where one of the writing prompts was Endings. By the time I was nearly done I realized it was far more about the start of Ani's new life and thus better suited to January's topic here, and it's just been sitting on my computer waiting for a closing paragraph or two for like...ever.))

One of the most intriguing places to people-watch in the "City of Heroes" is a place few will ever see, one which the world hopes it will not need for long. It is the secure underground bunker that serves as the operational headquarters of the Vanguard, deep below White Plains -- the area known to most today as the Rikti War Zone. There heroes and villains mingle, the personal vendettas and schemes that drive them in the outside world never quite forgotten but set aside in light of the shared threat presented by the Rikti resurgence.

Lt. Ani Hess of the Vanguard Sword, the Androgyne to much of the Rogue Isles and Paragon City, is a people-watcher. E has been since e was a child. Born lacking any internal or external reproductive systems, e spent much of eir youth watching the boys and girls e grew up with, studying the similarities and differences between them as e sought to understand that which separated em from both. As e matured the questions fueling eir curiosity evolved, but the curiosity itself never faded. Though raised to embrace it, to never feel the least bit of shame about eir uniqueness, e has never been anything but keenly aware of eir status as someone far outside the norm. So e continues to look in, rarely envious but always fascinated.

In time, the people-watching became less of a compulsion for Ani than a pastime. Satisfied with the answers e'd formulated for most of eir questions, the observations began to serve more to entertain em and exercise eir mind. Sometimes e watches eir own kind, the superhumans: gadgeteers, geniuses, mages, freaks of science and of nature, their interactions with each other and the rest of Vanguard. E watches as they gather for an audience with Lady Grey, Paragon's heroes and villains of the Isles gravitating to their own, off-hand snipes and the ensuing rejoinders the only interaction between the two bands. E sees them return from their assignments as an ensemble, their conflicting goals outside the W.Z. set aside in the glory of triumph, knowing at the end of their trials that they can rely on one another for at least as long as they are here.

Another thing Ani has observed is the several distinct ways the human body can move when it is weighed down in impervium-plated combat armor. Around the Vanguard base, e had begun to identify the ranks and functions of Vanguard personnel not by insignias of rank but by their gait.

Colonels stride. Even, measured steps that never falter until they reach their destination reflect the responsibility of command, their ability to commit themselves and entire regiments to the needed course of action in search of victory. These are men and women who walk with purpose.

Rangers stalk the corridors of the base, alert, ready to act on the instant. Often dispatched to perform the Vanguard's most crucial and extreme actions, their movements reflect their constant awareness that even in the Vanguard's heart there may be battles to be fought. These are men and women who walk prepared.

The rank-and-file non-meta human soldiers had the easiest carriage to identify. Theirs was often an outright stomp, an unconscious expression of irateness at another day passing and yet their hard work and the sacrifices of their fellows hadn't led to anything resembling the end of this war. Hard, harried footfalls announce their anger, their frustration, and their readiness to exorcise both on the next invader to enter their sight.

Few, if any, can really be said to glide in Vanguard armor. Normally, Lt. Hess is one of them, eir Vanguard armor a second skin. Eirs is a custom make tailored to eir specifications to be more flexible and less restrictive than that worn by most non-metas, as Ani has only confidence in eir abilities to keep em safe in combat. Eir armor is intended less for physical defense than psychological offense -- similar enough for em to blend in with the rest of the troops in mass combat, but distinct enough that when e stalks the Rikti alone they will know who e is and what e can do to them.

Even though clad in that attire which is almost more comfortable for em than being entirely naked, the Androgyne does not glide today. Today e strides, almost in the manner of a colonel. In the year and a half e has spent in the RWZ battling on behalf of the Vanguard and Earth itself, e has found that which e lacked for years as a tool of Arachnos. E has found purpose. Today, e takes the first step in realizing that purpose.

That purposeful stride carried the Androgyne from the Rogue Isles portal into Vanguard R&D. There e joined the Dark Watcher, leader of the Vanguard's Helm division, in observing the autopsy of a Rikti casualty in the operation theater below. The former Freedom Phalanxer's head never turned, nor did his eyes acknowledge Hess' presence, but still the greeting came with impeccable timing, his deep voice filling the air as soon as Hess' footfalls ceased. "Lieutenant. How are the threads today?"

The threads of Fate, a phenomena only Ani Hess is privy to, chains of dimensional refraction that bound em to every person in eir life through glimpses of possibilities diverging into actuality in an infinite number of new dimensions. The Dark Watcher's own experiences as a traveler into myriad other worlds lent him an insight into the operation of Hess' threads that had helped the young mutant come to a clearer understanding of eir potential through their conversations. While Hess reported primarily to Gaussian, eir few brief but enlightening conversations with the leader of the Helm had left em with an abiding respect for the man. "Calm today, sir."

"Good." Before the conversation Ani expected had even begun, the Watcher introduced a non sequitur, using an almost imperceptible nod to indicate the Rikti on the examination table below. "He's one of yours."

Ani looked closer at the Rikti, saw the jagged patches of flesh that had been fatally rehumanized by eir radiation blasts, and noted the faint suggestion of eir own face fighting for space with the Rikti's own in spite of its skull's deformation. E couldn't help but quirk a corner of eir mouth upward -- the sight of eir handiwork, once horrifying to em, nowadays never failed to fill Ani with a quiet pride. Especially when eir "artistry" was wrought upon a Rikti canvas. "You're welcome, sir."

The Dark Watcher issued a short grunt of dissatisfaction. "If only we could prevent the necrosis."

Ani was caught off-guard by the Dark Watcher's quiet musing. "Sir?"

"When you came to us...looking at your history, your ability. When we saw how it worked against them, I'd hoped we could use you."

Ani furrowed eir brow. "I haven't been of use to you?"

"You have. I simply held out hope for more. I wondered if, in you, we might not find a means of undoing the riktification process, but it seems not. Your corrections are limited...incomplete. And quite fatal." The Watcher almost sounded amused, though he remained stone-faced in his observation.

Ani looked again to the Rikti, leaned forward and gripped the observation deck railing. E squeezed, hoping to wring out of emself some of the tension e felt rising, knotting the muscles in eir back. E was afraid e knew where the conversation was going, and it wasn't the direction e'd hoped for. "It doesn't have to be. I'm in control now. I can hold back, dim the intensity. I've been practicing. On them."

The Dark Watcher's eyes again refused to waver from the corpse. "Is that so?"

"I, er..." Ani hesitated. "...I was done practicing with that one, sir."

There was silence between the two for a long while after that, but eventually the Watcher spoke. "We need you and your kind for this war, Hess. They're relentless. We have an entire world waging war against us, and right here is the main insertion point for their forces, our best opportunity to end this, but to do that we have to strike back not just as hard, but harder than they do. Heroes, they want an end to the war as much as Vanguard does, but...we're not fighting crime out here. They can't always bring what it takes to win a war. Their principles do not apply here.

"But out there? In that city, in our world? Those principles are all that matter. You can't toy with a human criminal the way you have with the Rikti. No matter how wretched and forsaken the scum you're called on to apprehend, you can't forget that they're human scum -- they are a part of what we're fighting for here, Hess: humanity. You forget theirs, you've forgotten yours."

Ani remained silent through the lecture. A part of em itched to snap back, to ask Dark Watcher what he had done for this world between the wars, what he knew of the city beyond the War Zone's barriers. Though e successfully held his tongue, the Dark Watcher turned now to face em with a knowing twinkle in his eye. Their eyes locked and two gazes that often saw more, and more mystifying, things than most other humans met in mutual understanding.

The Dark Watcher reached into his overcoat and withdrew a metal file folder emblazoned with the emblem of the Vanguard. "That said? Don't lose your edge, Lieutenant."

Ani took a deep breath, unable to conceal eir relief. E accepted the folder as it was offered and held it in both hands. "Thank you, sir. ...I am ready for this." This last sounded far more intended to convince emself than the Watcher.

"You'd best be. If not, I'll clip your thread myself." The Dark Watcher held up a hand, clenched it into a fist. Ani was astonished to see the smoky, glimmering thread of Fate that bound em to the Dark Watcher drift upwards out of the mass e always perceived to coil itself around the Watcher's forearm, like a snake seeking warmth.

"...understood," Ani murmured.

The Dark Watcher lowered his hand and the thread lazily unwound, returning to its position tethering their fates. He moved, flowing past the Androgyne like a liquid shadow away from the observation area. A slight motion of the Dark Watcher's hand bid that Ani should follow, so e fell in behind him immediately, eir pulse quickening.

It was the first time, Ani realized, e had ever had the chance to watch the Dark Watcher in motion. The Vanguard's most mysterious man preserved much of that mystique by moving unseen. If the Dark Watcher sought to speak with you and summoning you to his presence was infeasible for security concerns, he had a way of positioning himself where you were going to be before you even knew it to be your destination.

"You'll enter the city through our DPO in Atlas. There you will be met by representatives of City Hall, the PPD, and the FBSA. I hope you're well rested because you're going to be there a while. Vanguard's issued its support for you on this, and thanks to Dietrich you can expect Freedom Corps to at least stay out of it. Our recommendations are included with your record, but it's going to be up to you to sell them on it."

They came to a stop at one of the DPO portals, that which connected to the Vanguard facilities in Paragon City. A panel slid aside automatically on eir right gauntlet, proximity activating eir portal interface. The accessible locations, Atlas Park, Founder's Falls, and Peregrine Island, were all grayed out on the screen beneath an overlay of large red letters that blinked, "ACCESS DENIED".

The Dark Watcher produced a PDA which also interfaced with the Vanguard portal system. He punched in a series of commands, authenticating via thumbprint and retinal scan as needed. A second after the last scan was complete, Ani's screen flickered. The red letters blinked one last time and, alone of the displayed options, "Atlas Park" illuminated in a soft green. Ani stared at the screen for a long moment, lost in thought for a time as e prepared for what e was about to do.

The threads of Fate give Ani Hess a unique perspective on eir world, but e was a people-watcher for years before they were revealed to em. E only rarely will inspect them in search of additional insights when watching the people around em, usually preferring to screen the threads from eir vision entirely. In the threads, Ani can find a glimpse of their destiny but not what motivates them towards it; that is what e seeks to learn through eir mundane observation. Over the years e has learned to recognize several patterns in the threads, common traits of unrelated destinies that lend to these threads a certain uniform distortion. E has an extensive mental catalog of these rhythms and patterns from which to draw on, to inform eir understanding of another's behavior and future.

Despite all that e has learned, all e understands of what drives and guides the destinies of others, there is one very significant limitation to eir sight. E sees the threads which bind em to each person with whom e will cross paths in life, and through them can discern, subvert or hasten their fate. E is blind, however, to eir own, leading to a strange dichotomy of persective. As certain as e is that the threads will lead em to where eir prey or allies are meant to be, that each person e encounters has a destination that is unavoidable, the certainty of their fates accents the uncertainty of eir own.

Staring into the plasmatic swirl of the portal, Ani reflects on this. For a moment e is lost in speculation, verging on daydream, as e wonders what fate e may encounter on the other side, ponders the infinite possibilities e cannot glimpse. It is the Dark Watcher who brings em back to eir senses, his voice resonating as if only an inch from Ani's ear. "Merry Christmas, Lieutenant." Ani whirls to find the man is nowhere to be found. E bites back the urge to laugh, and a moment later whispers eir gratitude into the air without any doubt that it will reach the Dark Watcher's ears.

Ani gives eir head a shake to clear it of its anticipatory cobwebs and taps the screen on eir gauntlet; eir signal is approved an instant later and the portal attunes for transport to Atlas Park. Ani pushes aside the temptation to linger another moment wondering what might await em on the other side, and instead steps through -- to find out.

Re: Perspectives: Beginnings (Jan '09)

PostPosted: Sat Apr 06, 2013 1:38 am
by Visavis
Vi:

November was always miserable alongside the docks of Port Oakes. Small fires were kept going almost constantly by the homeless residents of the area, only dying out when an Arachnos patrol swept through the area, or one of the local gangs got too rowdy in the streets. As it was, the night was blessedly quiet for the small handful of vagrants milling about. An old couple huddled under a plywood leanto, singing offkey as they passed a bottle back and forth, which a young man across the way eyed with interest that only increased as their handoffs became more and more sloppy.

The situation was exactly what she wanted. Tugging the ratty coat tighter across her shoulders, she made a show of stamping her feet and vigorously rubbing her hands together over a burning barrel. With the hood up, and smoke wafting from the cardboard in thick billows, she felt safe to assume that nobody would notice her gaze flickering from person to person. It took some willpower to ignore the feeling that rushed through her veins as she appraised them all in turn. Even as she watched, the avarice one broke into a short run, kicking the old man in the jaw to grab the bottle. Her eyes hardened as he gave an extra couple stomps to the poor woman that tried to push him away from her husband. Fingers twitched, but the urge to step in was forcibly suppressed. Drinking in his appearance, she marked him for later. Provided there was one, of course.

Her patience was tested as he sauntered around, enjoying the guarded looks he received as his fellow drifters watched but did not move to act. If it weren't for the rush of euphoria skittering across her skin she would have completely missed the thickly built woman that strolled into their little gathering. A glance provided the necessary information. Black trenchcoat, leather. Tight across the back and upper arms. Rolled sleeves, exposed arms showing no discerning traits. Gloves extending several inches below her wrists. Baggy pants hiding her movements, though the ease of each step of thick soled combat boots gave the impression of a practiced fighter. Lips pulled back in a sneer at the sight before her. She felt almost petty at noting the woman's lank hair and poor complexion.

"Cock of the walk, yeah?" The newcomer spat out, advancing slowly on the thief, "How many people you lead here? Six? Tell me its six. Six plus you. Seven. That's my thing, you know. Seven. Which of you is it? Last one in? Lucky number today. Lucky for me."

Holding the bottle a bit more nervously, the appointed leader looked around as eyes were downcast once more. Some of the rage returned as they abandoned him to this threatening woman. With a mean grin he thrust his hand out, singling her out.

"HER! I never seen her before! She's gotta be i-" his accusation cut off with a startled squawk as an iron hand made a pinching motion on his spinal cord. The crack was audible, as he crumpled bonelessly to the ground.

The sneer remained on the woman's face as she surveyed her work, "Seventh vertebrae. Cervical. The axis. Good practice, breaking vertebrae. Hard to pinch. Make sure you live, right? Thank me. Or say goodbye." She lifted a boot, eyes lighting up in childlike glee.

"It's vertebra prominens, shouldn't you know that? Seven words. I contracted one so you'd feel better. Speaking of contracted things, you are one. Last two sentences were seven words too. You enjoying this as much as me?" The boot lowered to the ground, her attention drawn by the words coming from the woman by the burning barrel.

The thug raised her arms, looking around with a disbelieving expression as she addressed the crowd. It brought back memories of watching wrestling, "You eager to die, nobody? Smartass bitch thinks she can just mouth off and walk away? Stick around! All of you! I'm stomping this whore into the dirt!"

Adopting an unimpressed expression, the woman at the fire turned her hands over to warm the backs, careful to never let the killer slip out of the corner of her eye. "You dropped your theme just now, beautiful. Just as well, its contrived. See? I dropped it too, but I can play another one. I'm the youngest of seven kids. I was born in '77 on July 7th. In fact...." She spun from the fire, thrusting out a hip as she addressed her opponent directly, "I think I'd make a much better Black Seven than you!"

A booted foot shifted in the dirt, bringing forth an image of a bull as the hitwoman charged. It was a colossal impact as she slammed her harasser in the midsection, carrying the two of them through the front window of a derelict storefront. The feel of two ribs popping brought the cocky sneer back to Black Seven's face as she proceeded to hurl her newest victim into the back wall. It shook the roof, waves of dust sifting down from the upper level. Stomping close to the unmoving woman, Seven leaned down to grab at the collar of her coat.

"You know what... makes you special, BS? I can... call you that, right? Children. Your stupid little... contrived... MO. The others will get theirs... in time... but you... you involved kids..." Slender fingers tightened, the shadows coiling and slithering out from the pores of her skin. "You deserve the worst."

The hitwoman known as Black Seven made to laugh, the sound dwindling to hoarse croaking as the strength started to flow from her body. Bafflement spread across her features as she sunk lower toward the ground. The homeless woman pressed her hands against the dying woman's cheeks, keeping her upright for a few moments longer before whatever the dark soul within faded away forever. Letting the corpse slump to the ground, she began to peel off her outfit, the next steps in her plan already leaping forward.

"Black Seven. I suppose that would be workable." As she mused, she pulled the trenchcoat from her foe, letting it sit rather loosely on herself. A swell of pride filled her at the thought of the children she'd avenged, though the more immediate rush of memory that came with her target's demise quickly took precedence.

"Hm. Freelance, were you? Definitely workable."

Re: Perspectives: Beginnings (Jan '09)

PostPosted: Sat Apr 06, 2013 1:41 am
by Visavis
The Fail:
Seven Years Ago...

Ryan walked through her grandmother's house slowly, gazing at the pictures up on the wall. She trailed her fingers along the furniture, and hummed a quiet tune to herself. She came to one of her favorite spots in the house. A shelf dedicated only to the women of her family. Ryan smiled, and pictured her own photo up by the others. But her smile soon faded when she realized she wouldn't look a thing like the others.

The very first photo was of a young woman; it was very old, frayed on the edges, and slightly blurry. This was her great great great grandmother. The woman had a thin layer of silver fur, and her face was very like a cat's. Pointed ears sat on top of her head, and a long silver tail could been seen behind her. Under the picture was a plaque with gold lettering: The SILVER LEOPARD

The pictures following were not unlike the first, with a few different features here and there. Her mother, and grandmother didn't have the thin coat of fur, but most of their other features were the same. By right, Ryan should have had these similar features years ago, but she didn't. She hadn't inherited any of her foremothers' looks; she was the spitting image of her father.

She heard her mother and grandmother speaking in hushed tones, and crept closer to listen in.

“...just can't even imagine. I never thought I would see the day the line came to an end. What a disappointment!”

“Mother, please. Ryan will be just as good as you or I, or any of the other Leopards. Give her a chance, she's been training!”

“Training? Ha! Is that what you call sneaking around with boys now? Training. I don't know why you encourage her, she'll never be able to live up to the name.” Her grandmother gave a bitter laugh.

“Really, Mother! That's not fair. She's only started her training. It's been difficult, yes, but I see a lot of potential in her. And her powers, though very different, are very useful.”

“Useful! Since when has throwing a snowball at someone been more useful that a pair of good, sharp claws? Hm? Tell me that. Face it, dear, you gave birth to a dud.”

The kitchen was silent for a moment. Ryan could almost feel her mother's rage flow out of the kitchen. She heard her speak in a quiet, steady voice.

“Be careful, Mother. That is my child you're speaking about. And I'll not tolerate you calling her that.”

Ryan stopped listening as her grandmother clucked apologies, and tried to backpedal. Her heart sunk, and she backed slowly away.

I hate it here.” She thought, bitterly. The Silver Leopards all seemed to be laughing at her from their frames. “Stupid catgirls. Stupid super powers. Stupid mutation.

She ran outside, away from their smiling faces. Up in the sky there were a few clouds passing overhead. She pulled them nearer; lifting her hands, she called down a few snowflakes, twirling around as they kissed her cheeks.

“I'll show her. I'll show them. I'm going to be the best Silver Leopard they ever saw.” She lifted her arms in the air, calling down a fierce windstorm. “I am the Sixth Silver Leopard.”