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Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Sun Oct 09, 2011 7:25 pm

[Mount Kailash]

Tag's lips twinged into a tiny frown when she heard there was no more food. The man had provided Tag with food she had never tasted before and he never seemed to ask for anything in return. The mother would have been suspicious, she always said kindness never came cheap. But the mother was no longer here and Tag could never say no to someone giving her food.

Then the man asked Tag if she wanted to go into town with him. She thought about it for only a moment.

There was no food on the mountain.

There might be food in town.

"Okay." Tag said.

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Mon Oct 10, 2011 12:04 am

[Danger Room]

Roselia gave out a heavy sigh as the simulation ended, closing her eyes and letting her head roll back as if she were staring into the skies. Life would have been pretty dull had she not trained in the danger room on a regular basis. It has been years since she returned to the mansion in that beat up truck of hers; on hindsight, leaving the mansion wasn't exactly the smartest thing she ever did, but some good did come of it - especially the mechanical skills. Since then she had picked up an extra hobby of tinkering with machines around her, but mostly smaller non-essential electronic devices. As for her folks, at least there weren't any concrete evidence that point towards their deaths, the ones that she could find and understand anyway. Bringing her mind back to the present, she left the danger room and headed towards the showers.

A hot shower was exactly the thing she needed after an intense training. She considered taking a quick dip in the pool before that, but decided that it was too much trouble, not to mention she wasn't quite in the mood for any social interaction at the moment; judging from the sound of splashes coming from the pool, there should be more than a few students in there - probably the more playful ones too. She stepped into the shower and felt her muscles relax as the hot water rained on her skin. It was one of the few things that she still enjoyed after all the madness started, right next to martial arts training. By the time she stepped out, it had been over half an hour, but since there wasn't much to do around, she allowed herself some time to just laze around, especially after heavy physical activities. Without drying her hair, she put on her extra change of clothes, the towel one her shoulders and went back to her room, to her books. Luckily for her, only half of her old bedroom got torched during the attack, and part of her possessions survived and were brought down right after the attack. She have already read all of her books already, but there are a few which she keeps coming back to, and as a result, they're at the brink of falling apart by now. She grabbed a random book from the shelf since she wasn't particularly picky at the moment and just wanted something in her hand as she eased herself onto her bed and lied on the wall. It didn't take long until she dozed off.

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Mon Oct 10, 2011 1:45 am

-Ruins of Belgrade, Zone 29-

This land had been host to many wars before. The buildings and streets bore the scars. Years of development and peace had painted over the bullet holes. New layers of asphalt smoothed away the concrete pitted like the surface of the moon. Crowded cemeteries lay silent among blossoming housing and suburbanization. Architecture stagnant and nostalgic, choking with Brutalist, prole aesthetics gave way to glass towers, but the mortar and brick remained where it could. Even now the past fought the future, like in many cities across the continent, where the rampart and cathedral knocked elbows with the corporate wormfarm. Europe was a place of challenged borders and conflicting ideology, of battles born of blood and faith. This land was no different. What had once been a writing, tumultuous pot of trauma and cultural strife, seeing the path finally clear before it, emerged meekly into the new millennium searching for badly deserved rest.

What it found, however, was a war of a different kind. Unlike the centuries before, the enemy had not come from virtually next door, nor from tribes of people whose bonds of blood differed in subtle ways, whose dictates of faith spun violent contradictions with the locals. The war could not be fought with sword or armor, nor with bullets and bombs. Indeed, it was not so much of a war as it was subjugation. The enemy had once been as close as a sibling or a lover, made of flesh and within reason's grasp, but nevertheless inimical; war was intimate. What was a crisis of faith or a distant lineage in comparison to the uncompromising law of steel?

The Sentinels did not care whether their targets were Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist or godless. They did not care what lay in their targets genetic heritage save for the presence of one, highly important, highly unstable gene. Cruel defenses made to maim and cripple that severed the lives of harmless innocents could neither slow nor stop their advance. Starvation and intense poverty were as nothing to them. And the cold slowed the movement of their joints, but not nearly as much as it stalled the engines of tanks and armored vehicles. In the mean time, the people of the region responded with a fatalistic, perfunctory struggle. The scars of war lay within them, within their streets and cemeteries. They knew what lay beyond the battlefield of past and future when the cannon fire stopped and a deadly silence set in amongst its archways and knotted iron.

None could have been prepared for their relocation, interestingly enough. With a history replete with forced repatriation, mass internment and imprisonment, humans should have expected the sentinels to keep them where the population of mutants could be monitored and the "happiness" of the remaining normals could be attended to. Soon all that remained of what was once a nation, like all those surrounding it, were the collective ghosts of nearly a thousand and a half years and one-hundred-fifteen wars. The Skadarlija entered stasis looking much as it had for many centuries, sans people. The Royal Compound was vacant, what few piles of rubble remained of it. The commercial and office districts stood relatively intact, but only due to the natural endurance of modern architecture. Streets filled as they had many times before with mines and deathtraps, and every once in a while a Sentinel would trigger some far off boom, muted beyond the thick fog and still-smoldering ruins, but to little effect.

Even now the machines towered over the former skyline of downtown Belgrade. A sickening fusion of a knight's armor and a tank's glacis plate, the Sentinels continued their ghost-census as they plodded down uneven, trashed byways and allies. The Mold had spawned models of varying size and purpose. Years of combat had logged many of their characteristics, but with time the machines adapted and new models flew across the Atlantic with increasingly lethal weaponry and binary cunning. They changed, adapted. Too fast for the armies of the Balkans.

And too slow for Kresnik.

War against them, Kresnik's war, would be a battle determined not by the penetration of their armor or the sabotage of their code but by how much could be done with how little. To stymie the Mold's war machine, to break it with over a thousand years of military history would replace the arms race with a race of ingenuity and creativity, where the human mind was king and the machine merely its pawn.

A black figure, its outline shattered by a flowing ripple of dark fabric, stood atop a ruined highrise, a bleeding red star affixed in the featureless glass pane it called a face. At its side stood a metal tube, too massive to be called a rifle, affixed with a staggering array of electronics and hydraulic shock absorbers more at home on an automobile or construction equipment. Cold to the electronic eyes of the necropolis's new mechanical guardians, Kresnik's black suit mocked them, framed against the white and gray sky. A thick shell that rivaled an old milk bottle in size jumped from armored glove to glove, with visible weight.

The "Leader" had heard many rumors. That there was an organized effort, a deadly ex-military resistance group that had perfected its strategy against the Sentinels. That they were an unsavory bunch who didn't care even if a human wandered into their minefields or strayed into their sights, and would steal supplies from any refugees unlucky enough to stray into their territory. Some said they were neither human nor mutants, but machines themselves, rebelling against their bonds of code. Were he still human, or mutant, teasing out the origin of such rumors, and the thought process inherent within, would have been an amusing diversion.

Whirling the massive weapon and bringing it to bear, he slammed the shell into its massive chamber, sealing it shut with a pressurized hiss. Its weight and size would have rendered it impossible to carry for a naked soldier, but the Kresnik wore a suit of armor that whirred quietly, advanced myomer fibers magnifying his muscle power many times over. Almost as if sensing the threat, the nearest Sentinel's dull, orange, optical glow magnified. Its ferrous cranium turned ponderously to meet its target.

Only to be shattered, along with the sky, by the cannon's violent roar. A trail of smoke and shrapnel rocketed out of its skull through the electronic eyesocket. No matter how much armor was slapped on, no matter how many design flaws were eliminated, some things never changed. Explosions rocked the interior of its reinforced chassis, bolts of thunder ran across its purple and black skin, and the colossus toppled in a twitching mess, falling to its knees in silent supplication.

The Kresnik soldier stood, legs splayed apart like a human bipod, black streaks running from his boots before him. The weapon's recoil could shove him across the roof but not disrupt his unnaturally perfect sense of balance, nor knock him over with the aid of the powersuit. Billowing smoke poured from his artillery gun's muzzle and breach; the ejected casing complained loudly as it hit the tiled roof with an echoing clang. A cold redness like dying Aldaberan surveyed the Sentinel's wreckage, violating its broken corpse with diagnostic scans and analytic readouts. And inside his womb of reinforced ceramics and kevlar, a dying phantasm formed hoarse words on parched lips, echoing a phrase spoken a forgotten number of times.

A voice so faint that it could only have come from the dying soul of the city's discarded history, the last pages of mankind's violent journey scrawled by a machine's unfeeling metal fingers.


Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Mon Oct 10, 2011 2:01 am

Victor Mancha - Somewhere off the coast of Sector 8

It was a dark, stormy night in Victor's dream. Or, whatever it was that cyborgs like him did when they were trapped in their own heads.

And Victor's head wasn't a fun place to be in. Oh, sure, he could make a maze in two minutes that took another minute to solve, but whatever aptitude that proved he had, it didn't help him here. It was a dark, desolate wasteland of toxic code and traps and loopholes the Ultron Code had left in him. If he took one wrong step, it could mean another decade of internal warring against his father's genetics.

Luckily, he had about a century of time in this hellhole of a brain, and he knew all of Ultron's traps.

Most of Ultron's traps.

...Well, he had survived all the traps he had triggered so far anyway. He wouldn't even have noticed he was in his head until he passed by a dingy little bar with a neon sheep flickering in the window. Electric sheep.

He had read Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Phillip K. Dick when he was in middle school (by that, he meant he had been programmed to think he had read it - apparently Ultron had a sense of dark humor), but it had only really resonated with him when he found out who - or what - he was. And then, of course, the world had gone to shit, so he pretty much had an entire book that detailed the state of his life to a T. Then, of course, he watched its movie version, Blade Runner, and had been convinced that greater minds had thought up his life a long time ago. But he was the one living it.

So he used it as his "totem," of sorts. An electric sheep somewhere was an indicator he wasn't awake - it would pop up in his vicinity whenever he fell into his mind, just as a warning. Some of them even talked.

So here he was, getting drenched by imaginary rain enough to be the flood-rains of Genesis, and worried he might step upon a landmine binary loophole with every step he took. So he stood in front of the flickering light of a lamppost above him and the glow of the neon sheep at his right. Water was rising up to his knees now.

Suddenly, the rain hitting him stopped, although the sound of it stayed constant. Someone had held up an umbrella over his head. He knew who it was, of course.

"Hey mom," he said, turning. Marianella looked the same as she had six years ago, the last time he had seen her before he had found her, body turning cold, on their kitchen floor.

"Hi Victor," she said, smiling at him, her face full of parental pride. Victor's smile, in return, was sad. He wasn't afraid of his mother's apparition in his head. If his mother would never betray him, it would hurt every time Ultron killed her, even if she was illusory.

"It's been a while," she said. The water was up to their waists now.

Victor nodded. "A lot longer for you than me, I guess," he said. Six years for him. However long that translated to in his brain for this fictional program of his mother. "You look well...without him trying to kill you, I guess."

She nodded and peered at him closely. "Have you been eating right?"

Victor couldn't help it. He laughed, and she laughed too. "Nope, not at all," he said brushing back an illusory tear. "It's probably why I don't have any juice right now."

She looked sad and her eyes trailed upwards. His eyes followed hers, and soon the umbrella had become transparent and he could see the stormy sky. It wasn't really stormy, he realized. It was the surface of the water, as seen from below. He was falling into the water, and time had slowed down in his head again. He was drowning, and they both knew it.

"If I had more juice, I could have pulled myself out," he said softly. "I could have saved a lot more people. No more little girls in red coats."

"Schindler's List?"

He looked at her, slightly shocked. "I didn't know you'd seen it."

She smiled at him and said, "I had a lot of time. And you have a perfect memory."

He laughed, which eventually turned into a soft choking sob. His mother placed her hand on his shoulder.

"Will you stay here? Until the end?"

"Of course," she said. And she seemed to consider something before she said, "Although I would like to see your father's face as this happens as well."

Victor laughed a soft, choking laugh, and together they watched as the sky ripped apart and God pissed on the world.

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Mon Oct 10, 2011 11:11 am

Roslyn, Washington - Sector 7

Down, deep underground, in the once prosperous mines of Roslyn, the stifled air was once again filled with a now oh so familiar song. Everybody in the small community knew the words by heart now, but none could sing it like her.

I dig my hole, you build a wall
I dig my hole, you build a wall
One day that wall is gonna fall

In between the words you could hear the clanging of metal, or the fizz of a blowtorch. But nobody complained, music was a luxury nowadays.

Gon' build that city on a hill
Gon' build that city on a hill
Some day those tears are gonna spill

Herbert didn't like doing it, but she was needed right now.

So build that wall and build it strong cause
We'll be there before too long

If she didn't help now, it could all be lost within minutes.

Gon' build that wall up to the sky
Gon' build that wall up to the sky
Some day your bird is gonna fly

So with a heavy heart he moved to her small chamber, located in the western part of the mine.

Gon' build that wall until it's done
Gon' build that wall until it's done
But now you've got nowhere to run

With a sigh he knocked on the heavy metal door, knowing full well that most would curse at him for interrupting this little serenade.

So build that wall and build it strong cau-

The singing stopped, coupled with some groans from the people down the hall. A heavy tool was placed on a workbench. "Yes? Come in." A girl's voice said, a voice that seemed so out of place. It was too kind, too... Nice. Herbert shook his head and pushed the heavy door open. "Hey Casey, we got a little pro- For god's sake woman, put on some pants!" Before him stood a small, yet curved girl, wearing nothing but a tanktop, welding goggles and some underpants. "Oh come on Herb, you know just as well how hot it can get in here." the girl complained, removing the goggles, leaving behind a humorous clean area around her eyes. "That might be, young lady, but you still can't go around parading naked." Herbert averted his eyes, looking around the cluttered room. Oh he knew full well how warm it could get here, vents were few and sparse, to mask as much of their heat signature as possible. Not to mention that this particular room, Casey's bedroom, was also used as the generator room.

The girl folded her arms under her well developed chest and pouted like a little girl, denied of her dolls. "Fine, I'll see if I still have something wearable." She scurried off to a big pile of junk and started rummaging through it, until she found a pair of daisy dukes. She only barely managed to squeeze herself into them, before returning to Herbert. "This better?" she asked with a friendly smile. Hardly, Herbert thought, but it was some improvement. "Yeah, yeah. Anyway, we got a problem down at storage." he pointed over his shoulder. "Let me guess, the air conditioning went out again?" Casey asked, although it was a rhetorical question, she already knew it was the AC. The blasted thing did this every once in a while, the vents would get cluttered and the whole thing would shut down.

Casey quickly grabbed her Power Glove and pushed herself past Herbert. "Yep, you might want to hurry, I'm not sure when it went out. Could be a few minutes ago, might as well be half an hour." They really needed to automate that somehow. "Lummox, here!" Casey whistled. The giant pile of trash, where she had pulled her pants from, shuddered and started moving. A hulking figure rose from it, a giant woken from it's slumber. Lummox made a few clicking sounds before eagerly following Casey like a loyal dog.

Casey sped past the other chambers, where all the other people lived. Everybody smiled and greeted her heartily, they all knew that it was because of Casey that this place was still running. They owed their lives to that girl. Casey said her hellos where ever she could, they were a nice bunch. But as she moved past all the chambers, she noticed one rather troublesome detail.

The Sentinels weren't their greatest enemy, neither was mutant prime. Oh no, boredom was their greatest foe. This place pretty much ran itself, and in the case that something would break, Casey was the one to fix it. It was too dangerous to go outside, so the people were cooped up here the entire time. It doesn't take a genius to figure out what happens when you put men and women together in a tiny room with nothing to do. They procreate. The past few months had been an absolute baby boom. It was of course wonderful, but it also meant that there had to be tighter restrictions on rations. Casey feared that if this trend of birth continued, they'd run out of available food within the year. They'd have to expand. Which brought along a whole new set of dangers, Sentinels could pick up the excavations, the tunnels might collapse and god knows what kind of noxious gasses might be hidden in the deeper parts of the mine.

And it wasn't just their little community that had troubles, Casey had some of her own. There were more men than women, meaning that some were left without a partner. And some of the younger men had apparently taken a fancy to her, they weren't even trying to hide it. They would sometimes follow her around, or at their worst, wait for her to take a shower and follow. There were no private showers here, that luxury had been lost over six years ago. So now there were the communal showers. Casey had been wanting to say something about it, but she couldn't exactly forbid them to do that. But she also knew they wouldn't ever lift a finger against her, they were all too afraid of Lummox, he would rip them in half before they could even yell help. And somewhere, in the deepest parts of her mind, she was also somewhat flattered by the idea that men were even interested in her besides her power to build just about anything.

She continued her way through the narrow, hormone filled corridors, until she came upon a large metal door just like hers. A small sign with 'Green room' written crudely on it hung next to it. She opened the door and went inside, this had always been the room she understood the least of. Troughs with plants stood in rows, each containing some kind of vegetable. It was essentially a green house, only underground. Seemingly impossible, if it wasn't for the second person to keep this toko running. "Heya Sprinkler." Casey said jokingly. A boy around her age looked up and smiled "I really wish you would stop calling me that." Dennis was another mutant survivor from Roslyn, both him and Casey knew each other pretty well. The reason his nickname is Sprinkler, or sometimes Tinkler, is because of his power. Dennis has the ability to conjure up fresh water, but with the kind of power that could knock a person down, no, this was more of a soft trickle like you would get from a faucet. Before all this happened, the kids always made fun of him, calling him useless and whatnot. But Dennis is now their main source of fresh water, as well as keeping the greens nice and healthy. Guess the kids were wrong.

"I take it you're here for the AC in storage?" he asked. Casey noticed him glancing over her body once, he was also one of the few 'unlucky' ones to not get a woman. "Yeah, probably just some leafs or a animal or something. Nothing a quick Stalker wont fix." She replied as she made her way towards the back of the room, where the storage was. "Hey... Euhm, C?" He was the only one who had ever given her a nickname, and he was also the only one who was allowed to do so as far as Casey was concerned. She stopped and turned around, it was always amusing to see Dennis get all flustered about things, he was an old fashioned gentlemen. "Me and the guys, we're gonna hang out tonight... Wanna join us?" A small blush covered his face, which made Casey smile. "Sure, but first let me fix this little problem here." She said pointing towards the room behind her. "Oh, oh right of course... I'll just, I'll just get back to work then." He turned around again, but Casey had seen him beam.

The storage room was exactly what the name implies, a room where they stored their food. It was the room that had to be kept the coldest, so a AC was of great importance. Sadly, it kept blocking up with things. Dust, leafs, a poor critter, too much and the vents would get blocked, which overheated the machine. Casey sighed "Lummox, gimme a boost." The hulking machine didn't even hesitate as it folded it massive hands into something Casey could stand on. He slowly lifted her into the air, until she could reach the air vent. She unfastened two screw to allow the vent to hang from its hinges, before getting out the power glove. A small holographic menu popped up, showing all the things it had in it's database. This ranged from the droids to simple tool such as screwdrivers.

Casey picked a Stalker from her database, it materialized in a manner that would make many sci-fi fans wet their pants. It moved into the air vent, the holographic menu now replaced by it's vision. "Ah yes, there we go... again the leafs." the grainy video feed clearly showed the roster being blocked by all manner of leafs. It didn't take long to remove them, the Stalkers were very apt at that. Once the little mechanical monkey was out again, de-materializing in yet another spectacular manner, Casey rebooted the system, which sprung to life with a satisfying whir. Cold air soon blew on her face as Lummox let her down again.

Casey sat down on a crate and grabbed an apple. Lummox let out a few clicks and whirs "Payment for some good work." she said as she took a bite. The cool air felt so nice on her skin, how long had it been since she had gone outside? Months? Years? She sighed "I don't even remember what sunlight feels like."

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Mon Oct 10, 2011 9:52 pm

Minerva Hitaome: Sector 15, right outside the shack

She had been told to wait at the boat, but this time, Minerva didn't listen to orders. Well, these orders were more like a suggestion anyways, they came from Mickey. When she was younger, she'd have followed his orders without a blink of an eye, but she was practically a different person now. She was coming into her own, despite the insane circumstances. It was as if the heavy odds against survival were the catalyst to maturity for her. She wasn't stalking, persay, she was just following, or so she told herself mentally. She just had a bad feeling and it wouldn't leave her alone. She was sitting in the boat, prepared for anything that could possibly come her way, when the nagging feeling started to attack her. It spread from her insides and worked its way to her skin, leaving long-term goosebumps. It was like a cheesy horror film. She had gotten out of her seat multiple times, to look out at the direction where Mickey had gone, and bit her lip and sat back down. "Godammit." She had muttered after a very long sigh. It wasn't long before she was out of the door, cautious as per usual, but making good time nonetheless. She had come upon a shack, and thought that it looked like the one that Mickey had mentioned before, and she walked up to the wall and leaned against it quietly, barely making any noise. She had heard movements and noise from within, but couldn't quite be sure of what it was.

Over the past six years, she had grown from the sickly skinny and pale individual to an adult. She rubbed the skin on the top of her wrists, the scars were itching her again. They never fully healed, which was a good thing, because if they did, then she'd be in more pain when she'd have to rip them open again. She was also taller and had grown into some curves despite the circumstances, but she hadn't just grown physically. Instead of the events keeping her quite so shy verbally and cold emotionally, they helped her tap into her emotions and actually say things that she wouldn't have said years ago. She also finally realized that she had some bonds that she couldn't get rid of: Mickey, Ben, and some of the others. When she thought of some of the losses, her stomach grew tight, and she had to force herself to think of the future and the people that she was fighting to protect. She pulled her long ponytail over her shoulder and put her ear to the wall. Biting slightly chapped lips, she thought about walking in, but knocked on the wall with her knuckles softly. Loud enough to be heard, but softly enough so as to not catch too much unwanted attention.

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Tue Oct 11, 2011 3:01 pm

-( In the jungles of Cuba )-

Benjamin let his hands fall to his side as Hisui started with her report on the followers of Mutant Prime. The news was a little troubling, but nothing he couldn't handle. He nodded to her in recognition. "Yeah, fighting them seems to only call more of the murderous bastards. It's a shame really, some fight for him willingly and others get brainwashed if they resist. Some savior of the mutant race, huh..." Ben said. "Anything catch you fancy today that you'd like me to shed some light on? You where out a-" he said before the sound of something hitting the ground rather loudly cut him off.

"We've got company it seems. Cover me Figment." Ben said as he closed his eyes to concentrate and scan the surrounding area. He hated ambushes, much less poorly executed ones. Perhaps the Primers caught wind of their little meetings and chose a more preemptive approach. The distance of the sound gave them time to move on and hide further into the jungle or investigate and get the jump on their would be ambushers. Ben would choose his course of action based on the intel he gathered.

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Tue Oct 11, 2011 3:35 pm

~ Whisper ~
~ Sector 15 - Shack in the middle of nowhere ~

It was impossible not to eavesdrop on Mickey and Azunka. Not in the way that curiosity got the better of her, but in the way that it was physically impossible for her to choose to tune them out of her head. Their sunny yellow and bright Kelly green twined around each other, making a colorful yarn of relief and near-loss and affection in her head as she stared at the map, stolidly refusing to allowing herself to wonder how she'd react if she got a chance for a reunion with...well, it wasn't important, because it wasn't a possibility.

And it was better not to be a dreamer. It was better to focus solely on the things that were real--tangible or not.

She raised her gaze from the rickety table to where Cora rested, her pale blue topaz pillar of strength. While it may seem like she took him for granted, it was only a bad act that she put on, trying to convince herself that if something happened to him, she wouldn't break down again. But she would. She knew it, and she knew that he knew that she knew that he knew...It got confusing when you were in people's heads.

He wasn't John. He would never be John. He lacked a certain...fire. But that was okay. She wouldn't have been able to help the violence that flowed from her if he tried to act like John.

Instead, he was Cora. He called her "princess," and she called him...well, nothing out loud. But in her head, if she was a princess, then he was her royal guard, the knight in crystal armor that kept her fragile spun-glass palace from collapsing around her...again.

And so if that carefully-crafted castle refracted the yellow and green from Azunka and Mickey's minds, casting mesmerizing caustics along the floor of Miranda's mental space, she could look the other way; she could look at the cool blue that she'd set as her ever-present sky in her world built of thin spires of her own azure rising from myriad rainbow shards of past shattered thoughts gifted to her.

Her mind was a terribly colorful place.

She drew a breath, closing her eyes on that kaleidoscopic place, and tried to ground herself in the dingy, dirty, dim little hovel she stood in. That was not only real, it was tangible. And until she decided whether she was going to go all mother-bear on her remaining friends (because Very Bad Things seemed to happen when she was away from them, illogical as that line of thinking was), or push them away in a misguided attempt to save herself pain (and thereby cause herself more pain than she probably would have sustained in the first place), she had to focus on things that were not only real, but tangible. Honestly, she knew that there was no real decision there, but she'd been a little island for so long, and human nature was to buck against change.

She let out her breath and let a hand stray to her belt, where the too-familiar X rested on the buckle, waiting to chirp to life with instructions on how to proceed, or coordinates to the target, or...or some kind of guidance so that she didn't lead these last three precious things into some kind of figurative firestorm and get them all dead. It was both a comfort and a sharp reminder of how she'd failed those she cared about...and a reason not to fail them again.

It was about then that the play of colors in her head shifted, and she looked up at the wall with a frown and reached out to direct her power as much as she was able, seizing hold of the cyan thread and following it back to its source, wading through the surface thoughts and feelings with what seemed like so little effort. Her brow furrowed just the slightest bit as she peeked down at the next layer. Mickey. Ben. Boat. the concepts were like little puzzle pieces that she had to shift around and lock together to get a semblance of order in her head. Minerva. Another classmate. Not one that she really remembered, but hey, another of their classmates was another of their classmates. And apparently, she was working with Mickey, but he hadn't wanted to include her on this little waltz. That fact in and of itself was interesting.

She was on the other side of the shack from the touching reunion. That was good. Until Azunka and Mickey had finished their little moment, it was best that the new arrival stayed secret...well, from them, at least.

"Seems like more of my class made it than I thought," she murmured, eyes still on the wall, and then cut through Minerva's thoughts with her own whispering mind-voice: Don't yell. Don't move. I assume that you don't know the details of what's going on, so here's a little infodump: Some of our classmates are being held. We're springing them out. I don't know why Mickey didn't want to involve you, but a body's a body and we could use the help, if you're so inclined.

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Thu Oct 13, 2011 3:45 pm

命❀~In the jungles of Cuba, Hisui~❀命

The moment that Hisui heard the thud of something hitting the jungle floor, she and Ben both vanished from sight. For powers like Ben's, and the hidden Cornelius, would cause a bit of a battle in the mind. Their powers would insist that she and he were there, exactly in the same locations as before, but their brains would insist that the pair in the clearing had simply vanished. For Hisui, the act was instantaneous, a conditioned response from spending the last four years on the run. And as such, she hadn't thought to make herself visible to Ben. Her survival instinct was running the show at the moment, so she hadn't even realized that she extended her powers to hide him as well. She was so used to using this particular illusion that Ben would find it hard to overcome the senses telling him that she wasn't there anymore to hear his mutant senses telling him she was no less than a few centimeters from where she had been standing before. She peered out into the undergrowth, looking for the source of the noise. It remained quiet though, which left her almost more worried than if a few Primers had stumbled onto them.

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Fri Oct 14, 2011 3:13 am

~Snap; Cuba, watching from a tree above~

Snap blinked as the two vanished from sight. He slowly stuck his tongue out to “taste” around for body heat, the effect as sickening. He pulled his tongue back, and grabbed the branch tighter as the gag reflex started to rise. The effect was similar the sickness when you are dizzy from spinning around. The brain gets contradicting information from various senses, and comes to the conclusion that he is hallucinating because of poisoning. The standard body-response to poisoning is to empty the stomach.

Snap kept on clinging to the branch, while trying to remain completely motionless. He took deep breaths through his nose, trying to calm his upset belly. He should get out of here! No! If he moves he would give away his position for sure. It was dark and he was high up in the tree, beside he didn’t make the noise, so they will start look elsewhere. Curse those bright-red scales, it would be so useful to have green or brownish hide, or be able to adapt like a chameleon.

Just keep calm. The two were his friends after all. They probably just got scared; there were some of those mutant bad-guys in the jungle. Ben and Hitsui probably suspect them to be around, not him. What if they were really around? The irony of the situation! He gets clumsy; the two expect to be jumped by bad guys, while those are really around…

Snap knew the two were down somewhere, trying to find them would be quite unpleasant, but he could have a quick look around while he is hiding. Just to make sure. So he started to stick his tongue out again, started to scan the trees and bushes surrounding the clearing where his friends just got invisible.

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Fri Oct 14, 2011 7:28 am

Samuel Stars - Unknown Sector
~ One more morning in Compound 17 and I'm Feeling Good! ~

The Compound was drowned in a pitch black darkness, there was no moonlight to reach the underground facility and the sun was shining from the wrong direction. Turning in his bed Samuel Stars was dreaming. It was an uneasy sleep and the coming morning didn't make things more easy. Suddenly the electric light lit up and then a ringing sound with that annoyingly familiar and tedious tune that alarms had before the war had. Sam groaned from his bed and tumbled around his red covers, putting his pillow over his head. He hated listening to that alarm everyday. He still hadn't found a way to tinker with it so he just had to bear it for now. He threw his pillow on the source of the alarm, a megaphone embedded on the opposite grey wall. Of course that didn't much good but relief Sam of some of his irritation.

He groggily stood up and tried to shake off some of the residue sleep. Rubbing his eyes, their crimson colour unnaturally dull at this time of day. He stood up and looked around before walking towards the bathroom, the room he was in, or apartment would be more accurate, consisted of basically two rooms. The bathroom and the common room. In the common room there was a kitchen with granite benches and wooden cupboards, a small metal dinner table stack against the wall and a metal bed that looked far less comfortable than it was pushed to the opposite side. It was a rather simple apartment but compared to the chaos that happened everyday in the outside world this seemed like a five star hotel. Before entering the bathroom though he went near the kitchen table and turned the radio that was there on. Not exactly the radio to say the truth, but the CD that was in it. Music came out of the CD player and Sam started to hum at the tune of the happy song; When you smiling... When you smiling... And the whole world smiles at you... Sam threw some water on his face, brushed his teeth, relieved himself, he noticed that his hair was a bit too long. He considered cutting it, but he wasn't in the mood.

He went back to his bed the music still playing. He looked through his closet. He picked a random pair of blue jeans, ragged but clean and a black top with some random white letters on it. He started changing, taking his pyjamas off, then wearing the trousers and the t-shirt. He finished and then took his trainers from below the bed and wore them. He yawned and fell back on his bed with a tired look on his face, as if he had just woken up. He pulled his hands up and slapped at the side of his face. He stood up again and closed the closet. He walked towards the kitchen with a big sigh. He took some bread out, he looked through the fridge for some butter but he didn't find anything. He took two slices and put the in the toaster. Oh, how he had missed butter. But he couldn't find anywhere, no matter how hard he looked. As the toast was baking, he took a mug and poured some milk in it. He took out of the drawer a book filled with sudoku he had kept for the morning brain exercise and started working on one of the problems with a pen.

A couple of minutes passed and the toast chimed. Sam went and took the toast, careful not to burn his hands. He went to the fridge and took some ham, sliced it and put it on the toast. Sipped some milk and just sat there quietly drinking milk and eating toast. There was nothing really for him to do nowadays but wait. After breakfast he would go through with his daily exercises and then maybe read a book for the hundredth time. It was the same routine everyday and he could only describe his mood with one word. Bored! He only waited for the afternoon when his projections would come back. That was the thing he was always expecting for he could assimilate all of their memories, skills and energy. They would also bring back anything interesting they found. Hopefully today was unlike the rest of the week, which was just him waiting, or like other times with just some scraps of metal and other useless things. He stood up and emptied most of the milk in the sink, such a waste, he took another bite of the toast and walked to the empty space in front of his bed to start his exercises just as the song finished 'And you'll rule this crazy land with me, I'm the sheik-y man, that's who I be!'

Meanwhile one of Sam's Corporal projections
~ Near a Ghetto camp in the Equator ~

Sam, or at least his mind and body but maybe not him per say, walked looking around him in full alert. The forces of the Mutant Prime were always on the lookout for rebels and any kind of mutant really. Sam walked as carefully as possible with an empty brown bag hanging over his shoulder. He has to blend in, to be casual and draw no suspicion. As he walked he had his eyes on the ghetto in front of him, that is where he was headed. Ghetto though might not be the correct word. It was more like an encampment really. Series of tents and stalls. Most of the people here were mutants, you could see it if you just looked around. But they were mutants under the control of the Mutant Prime, you could see some mutants searching the area for rebels. They were different, they had the air of control and arrogance in them. With a simple sack over his shoulder and trying to look as inconspicuous as his skills allowed him to be Sam took a step into the ghetto and headed towards the first decent stall that had food on it.

Looking at the salesman you knew already that he was a mutant. He had white eyes and completely white skin and hair. But at the same time he looked incredibly young. It was like seeing a ghost. "What can I do for you young sir?" he said with the air of someone older and wiser than he looked. Curiously enough it was as if he didn't look at Sam directly. "I require the basic supplies, meat, canned food, anything you can spare" Sam said trying to pay no attention to the peculiar mutant. "Would you be so kind as to not steal from me? It would get troublesome for both of us if something like that happens" the mutant said. Sam was shocked because that was what he was intending to do. While he kept the shopkeeper busy his other projection would go and get as much food as possible. Was this man a mind reader? "Not quite a mindreader, although those are some of the perks of my ability. But please keep quiet about me. I don't want the Mutant Prime to know what I can do" the man said with a smile. Sam couldn't do anything but look at him, he was so shaken that he didn't notice the man that stood behind him. A giant of a man that move as quietly as a cat. He took a few steps backward and fell on him. The giant pushed him back, "Kid, who are you?" the giant asked not too loud but angry enough so that Sam understood that this wasn't going as planned.

"I am just a simple mutant, under the leadership of the Mutant Prime. I am sorry, I meant no disrespect" Sam said immediately, without thinking, because he knew that the man in front of him was certainly one of the underlings of the Mutant Prime. The giant picked him up from the collar, "Stop messing with me kid, you are not from around here. Who are you and what are you doing here!" the giant asked angrily, now everyone was looking at them. Everyone's eyes were there so no one noticed another boy leaving holding a bag over his shoulder, a bag filled with food and other supplies. "Nothing I just came here because..." Sam tried to explain himself but with no success. The giant threw him on the stall breaking it down. The shopkeeper was over him. "I would run if I were you, its too late to hide now" he said and bent down pretending that he was picking up things to salvage his shop "Lets make a deal, I say nothing, you say nothing. What do you say?" the shopkeeper said with sneer. "Its not like I have much choice. I hope I see you again." Sam said before standing up. He dusted himself off and then looked at the giant "Good job" he said, "you finally caught me..." he looked up with an evil smile. "Or have you?" he added and then many projections appeared everyone around the market, smiling arrogantly. The giant looked pissed off now, he screamed and tried to hit Sam, only to find out that he was hitting thin air.

Truth was that Sam's corporal projection was now in another plane, and the other projection already far away trying to find a place to concentrate and move the food through the astral plane. He didn't like that shopkeeper, he didn't like him at all. Not to mention that now he would have to go back into Sentinel territory since the followers of the mutant Prime would be alerted of his presence. Panting he reached the sea. It was beautiful at this time of day, the sun was touching the sea creating such a flurry of colours and a soft breeze brushing his hair. He took in a deep breath and smelt the fresh sea. He walked at the side of the bay, around the coast was a small cave, a small refuge he had found during his travels eight years ago. He still used it every now and then when he came to this part of the world. He sat in there and concentrated. Soon, really soon he disappeared in a stream of white lights and then there was nothing in the cave but darkness.

~ Back at Compound 17 ~

Sam, the real one this time, was doing some martial art exercises. Grabs, punches, kicks. It was all normal and good. Then the familiar lights appeared just a couple of meters away from him. His projection appeared sitting crossed legged on the carpet in front of the bed, a sack of supplies next to him. Sam went and looked at him, "What took you so long" he said. "You'll see, so why do you ask..." the projection spoke rhetorically; with a sigh he stood up leaving the bag to the floor. He walked a bit closer to Sam. Sam cringed a bit, it always hurt when they merged after so long. Its been almost a week and the experiences that had accumilated in the projections would be too much for him to handle. The projection lift his arm. Sam looked at him. He shivered and raised his arm as well. They touched and whirlwind of pale lights and shimmers surrounded them hiding them from plane view as they both phased in and out of the astral plane. When the lights cleared out there was only one. Sam on his knees panting hard, tears in his eyes for all the destruction and the pain he saw, all the hope and desperation. The images still flashed behind his eyes, a ghetto being destroyed by sentinels. A mutant child running away from the forces of the Mutant Prime. The resistances trying to survive as best as they could. It was a war out there, but he had to survive. He had to. He just had to.... Because that's the only thing he knew how to do. Then there was the white man... Who was he? He seemed like an annoying person, troublesome. But they had made a deal. And he might never see him again, it happens so many times in this battlefield that people call home, earth.

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Sun Oct 16, 2011 2:43 pm

-Tommy, former Newfoundland, disputed territory-
Right between warring factions, machine and mutant, sat a small one story house. An old, run down house, like all the others near it, with paint chipping, broken glass and missing shingles. Some of the others along the street were partially destroyed, either from nature or combat in the streets. What Tommy liked about this particular house was it's rather sturdy looking stone basement, small it may be, with a variety of furniture and stored objects. The magician sat there in the relative dark of the basement, kept lit only by a small candle. His backpack sat in a corner by a couch, with a few empty cans around it. His clothing was the usual, dark pants and a white shirt, his coats and hat slung on top of a box. From the soft glow of his candle, he looked out at the floor before him where rows of cards were laid out. Solitaire. He'd scavenged up most everything left in this neighborhood, so it was another day of waiting. It'd been more hiding and waiting than usual when he got here, but what were his options? The only reason he stayed in this hole was because this area was too hotly contested for either side to patrol properly, and he had no idea how his few contacts managed.

Running a hand through his hair, he gave thought to his food supply. Mostly canned goods, with a few treats thrown in. It was pretty decently sized, but then, he was trading a good bit for the boat ride. His only ticket out of here. A small resistance group had, like him, realized that staying here wasn't going to end well. They said they had a plan to get a boat ready, but Tommy would believe that when he saw it. Still, he'd survived by his luck for a while now, so he might just pull off another daring escape. He wasn't entirely sure where they were headed, just that they were going. Might end up on the east coast, probably aiming for Cuba. He doubted they'd try Europe, too much ocean and nothing but foreign lands on the other side. Besides the giant robots, of course. It was hard to get straight answers when he could barely risk talking with them. As if to punctuate his thoughts, he could very faintly, even through the basement's old stone walls, hear the distinct sounds of a battle.

Tommy gave it no mind. With luck, some of them would rid each other. Good riddance. It would probably be easier if he was a mutant: he could just try to fit in with the crowd. It'd certainly be simpler than trying to fight a two-sided war. Or survive it at least. Tommy wasn't much for fighting, especially when one side could do who knows what, and the other was dozens of feet of steel and lasers. So he sat back and did scavenged what he could. It was a living, he supposed. Shaking the thoughts from his head, he turned back to his game of solitaire. Once again he was stuck. "Blasted game. This is the third one straight I've run out of moves." With a scowl he swiped them all up and put the deck of cards back together, shuffling. Fourth time's the charm. Outside somewhere, the battle took out another house. Tommy just had to wait a few more days, and he could get out of this hole.

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Sun Oct 16, 2011 4:15 pm

Minerva Hitaome: Outside the Shack

Minerva waited a moment, and was about to knock on the wall once more before finding a way inside when she heard an unfamiliar voice in her head. "Oh..." She whispered softly, frowning a little bit as she stayed still and figured that thinking hard in return might be helpful to making this conversation two-way and perhaps even a little easier of the other person's side. Hopefully she wasn't too loud. 'What can do to help? And just wondering, who are you? You're obviously in my class...' She tried not to think too hard on who this person could be. She didn't get to know too many in her class, as she had been very antisocial at the early stages, and as she didn't get to meet too many students out of her own little group.

She was slightly disgruntled that Mickey didn't inform her about this, but wondered why. It wasn't like she couldn't take care of herself. But then again, she knew Mickey, and she knew herself well enough to know that he didn't like to put any of his friends in danger. The only problem with this was that she didn't like him getting into situations that he couldn't handle. She would never forgive herself if Mickey was killed because she hadn't been there. That was why she was here. She hoped that whomever this person was that was listening to her thoughts would keep these things to herself. If not, they'd be having a talk later, that's for sure.

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Sun Oct 16, 2011 5:26 pm

[Mount Kailash]

The climb down was not an easy one.

On his first attempt, it had taken Hiram nine hours of precarious footholds and near misses to make his way down from his tiny camp to the world below. Kailash was not a particularly tall mountain, but it was an imposing one – half the climb took them over smooth, flat walls of ancient rock, only the small gashes carved into the stone by age and weathering serving as purchase. Over the months Hiram had developed a solid internal chart of the mountain’s topography (not to mention a much improved sense of balance), memorizing particular routes through the gauntlet of sheer drops that saved a great deal of time and worry, but no path in the House of Shiva was certain, and often he found that in a mere few weeks old footholds had vanished under sheets of treacherous ice or deformed beyond usefulness. At best, he could cut the journey down to five hours.

Today it was six. One of his usual routes had been too choked with snow to navigate with any certainty.

By the time they were at the base of the mountain the sky had lost some of its grandeur, a half-hearted grey creeping in amongst the endless shades of blue. Like a pack of great, heaving predators, the faraway clouds were closing in upon the mountain. Looked like they were bringing a storm with them, too.

That might complicate things somewhat.

Hiram put it out of mind as they trudged across the open snow. If it stormed, then it stormed. Nothing he could do about it. He’d have to just deal with the aftermath when it came.

Amazingly, the wasteland of Kailash was somewhat alive. Trees – gnarled, wizened things decrepit well beyond their years, but still trees – stood between the mountain and the old paths out into the rest of world, craned in strange, haphazard ranks, as if caught in a single instant of an ancient, writhing dance. There had been less before, he imagined – as it was, they reached all the way to the stupas lined up ahead, spoiling the desolate symmetry of the holy roads. That was something of a recurring vision amidst the abandoned places that Hiram liked to make a temporary home of. In Nonthaburi there’d been a train station that hadn’t seen people in so long, it had been overwhelmed by bright, creeping green. He’d stayed there just under three weeks, until the violets dotted across the rails went into full bloom. That had been quite a sight.

The only sight that interested Hiram right now, however, was a thick, dark stream of smoke rising up beyond the trees, where the largest of the abandoned temples stood. They must have been burning a lot of stuff.

It wasn’t that cold, was it?

As they approached the first row of stupas, Hiram found himself crouching down, his stance shrivelling inwards in an attempt to make him as inconspicuous as possible. Through the trees, he could see a military truck stopped several meters from the temple stones, its engine still purring. There were five men in militant apparel – three with rifles, two without – encircled about a huddled mass of men and women at the entrance to the temple. The three with armaments wore thin, bright chrome circles about their necks – a sight that had become quite familiar. Something on them was rigged to explode in case of insurrection, ensuring at least some measure of loyalty from those homo sapiens that were drafted into Mutant-Prime’s forces. The self-proclaimed progenitor of mutantkind preferred his soldiers to be of the homo superior variety, but it seemed his followers weren’t above the use of regular humans when warm bodies were needed. After all, even a child can fire an RPG.

That meant that the three riflemen were baseline humans… and the two others were mutants.

Hiram drifted through the treeline, hunkering down at the base of one of the monolithic stone constructs marking out the path. He’d seen this before – in all likelihood, they were looking for young mutants to bring into the fold. But little conscription groups like this hadn’t popped up within miles of Kailash in all the months he’d been there… it was too far from the Front to be of notice to them.

Unless the Front had shifted again.

A long, tired breath curled up from his lips. Things had managed to get complicated again.

His eyes settled upon his companion. Something was formulating in his brain, but he wasn’t sure if he liked it.

“Tag.” He muttered, glancing back at the truck. “How hungry are you?”

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Tue Oct 18, 2011 2:21 am

-Da Love Shack-

Cora sat in a corner of the shack, his chair leaned against the wall behind, and thinking of...Nothing in particular. It was true, random, stray thoughts crossed the landscape of his mind every few moments, but as he stared blankly at the ceiling above, the majority of his thoughts were directed towards a pleasant, steady blankness. It was a habit he'd picked up years ago, that he'd taken up engaging in before any time he expected to be involved in a conflict. Though back then, the conflicts usually only involved friendly rivalry and not the threats of death or worse like they tended to now. Still, he liked to think it helped him react a little quicker, move a little faster when things inevitably go wrong, thought whether that was actually true was something even he wouldn't put money on. But it made him feel better, and thats what really counted, right? In fact, it kind of bothered him how easily he had transitioned into this world of violence and survival, or rather it bothered him that it did not seem to bother him. Anyway, at the moment, there were plenty of things he would rather not be thinking about, considering where they would soon be.

Soon, they would be heading into one of the sentinel's little day camps. The odds were, by the time they made it out of that place he'd have a lot more things to avoid thinking about. As if he hadnt seen enough of that since this whole mess had started. Cora's eyes unfocused slightly as a carnival of unpleasant memories fluttered across his mental landscape. Scared children being herded away by sentinels, to who knew what fate...rioters beating each other savagely for scraps... A older man lying dead in a ruined hospital...

The memory was interrupted quickly.This wasn't the right time for that pity party, because the right time was Never. Besides, the one person he should really be worrying about was Miranda. Cora leaned back into upright position in his chair and turned his head to look at the person in question, frowning slightly. She hadn't been this noticeably agitated about anything in what might be years, and he didnt want to have to worry about her having a relapse if something went wrong...Though, that just meant he had to make sure nothing went wrong really.Simple.
Hana wrote:"Seems like more of my class made it than I thought," she murmured, eyes still on the wall...

Cora quirked an eyebrow at the comment, though he was fairly certain the princess wasnt paying any attention to him at the moment. "Oh?" He asked curiously, leaning forward a bit in his chair. "Are we expecting company then?"

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Thu Oct 20, 2011 12:53 am

[ Sector 15 ]
- Undisclosed location, abandoned shack -

Eventually, Minerva found her way inside, greeted by the sight of several familiar, if older, faces. There would also be someone there she didn't recognize, whose unfamiliar voice she could've possibly heard from outside. Then again, given how many years have passed, all of their voices could have easily become unfamiliar. Before anyone could really absorb the fact that a sudden new X-survivor had walked in on the group, another new voice made themselves known. It was ever so familiar to the former X students, but it was really only Miranda who truly knew it. After all, it was the voice that belonged to her contact, who had arranged for this very mission. "Hmm... more people than I was expecting. Not a bad thing though," the voice said. Strangely, none of the occupants of the shack could see where this voice was originating from... and it definitely wasn't coming from their heads either. For those more familiar with combat, they could definitely sense a 'presence' that they could not perceive.

Then, quite suddenly, a man decloaked in the center of the building. For Cora, the surprise was most likely just from the sudden appearance. For the rest, however, it went much deeper. The man who had appeared before them looked all too familiar... in fact, he was identical to a man they knew very well. Identical and not the man himself, because the one they knew had died a long time ago. Whoever this person was, he was the spitting image of Kennedy Yang, their fallen mentor. The only difference in the two lied in the cut hair, the slightly darker skin, and awfully white choice of uniform. Mickey, and anyone else familiar with their shady government agencies, would recognize it as belonging to S.H.I.E.L.D. "Just to put this out there from the get go... no, I'm not Kennedy. I'm his brother, Kenji, former X-Man, former S.H.I.E.L.D. agent, and current wrench in Master Mold's plans. And, if I recall from my last visit to the mansion and your files, you are..." he started, first explaining himself, and then slowly going around the room to each person, "Mickey O'Brian, Azunka Naeme, Minerva Hitaome, and Mir.... er... Whisper, and..." Kenji then let his eyes fall on Cora, whose name he could not recall, but who he knew regularly accompanied Miranda. "... and you... guy."


[ ?????? ]
- Undisclosed location, unknown Sentinel holding facility -
-- Penepole's Room --

Most likely to Penepole's surprise, the dented wall only remain dented for a few seconds. Quite suddenly, the wall receded and retracted, and then vanished into complete darkness. Then, in a matter of a few seconds, another, identical and undamaged, wall took its place. Whatever prison she was in, it was apparently self-repairing. Then, as if the place wasn't satisfied with just giving her that revelation, a portion of the wall suddenly began transforming. After a few seconds, a monitor appeared, without so much as a warning, a torrent of images and voices began to play. Some would be familiar to the young woman. They were old videos of her and those she knew, from more peaceful and happier times, and also of recent battles, no doubt taken from video logs of the Sentinel units. After several minutes, the overload of information finally stopped with a mechanical voice stating, "Match found."

The random images went away, and in its place, a familiar face. It belonged to an ally of hers, who had died fighting alongside her against the machines. He had been around her age, black haired, hazel eyed, handsome, even if unkempt, and had a stubble from the fact that shaving materials just weren't very common. In life, he was cocky, snarky, incredibly reckless, and stupidly courageous. Especially when it came to her. He had sacrificed himself to save her, even though she could've survived without his intervention. "Greetings, mutant," Daniels' face stated simply, far too monotonously to be human. To be him.

[ Latveria ]

Vision's aircraft landed in Latveria without incident, which was, in fact, unusual. Sentinels regularly patrolled the sky, and were quite adept at finding even the most technologically advanced hidden aircraft. It was as if the machines had learned not to bother attempting a takedown against a craft that had so soundly defeated them or escaped in all past encounters. Or, maybe they were just biding their time? Well, such a possibilities weren't for Vision or her team to contemplate. Their only job was to carry out the will of Doom. Sure enough, one of their ruler's messengers was waiting for them after their aircraft had completely stopped. When they exited, he went straight to the girl. "You have been summoned," was all he told her, before making a small bow, and quickly leaving.


Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Sat Oct 22, 2011 12:15 pm

-( In the jungles of Cuba )-

Ben couldn't make out much in the area surrounding them besides the usual jungle nightlife, so he cast as long a net as he could and swept deeper into the jungle as well as the small portion of the coast he could reach from there as well. He opened his eyes to see that Figment had faded from view. He could still feel her presence nearby when the "soft tk", as he calls it, was active, but all his other senses told him that she was simply gone. In this world of mutants he learned to trust in his abilities over his bodily senses a long time ago and it proved a life saving practice against those who can fool or disable the senses.

Ben turned in an opposing direction to that from which the sound had emanated from with a slight grimace on his face. Whatever made that sound was a dead heap on the jungle floor, already a buzz with flies. The carcass felt like it had been torn into by a primeval butcher, but something that had experience doing that sort of thing. It wasn't the work of any local wild life or anything that managed to survive from the zoo though, the "cuts" where too clean for that.

"Hmm... we're clear for now, but that's odd. Something must have lost their dinner a ways out, but that's not our biggest concern. Even further, we got Primers moving a supply run in from the coast. Not sure what but it's bigger than usual. Can't be good either way." he said. Ben found himself pondering on two choices, move his people now, or stop the lightly guarded supply run and claim it for themselves. It could be a trap meant to lure him, but from what Hisui told him, they were probably waiting on whatever was coming in tonight.

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Sat Oct 22, 2011 10:52 pm

[ Latveria ]

The whole flight trip back to their 'home' country' was a pretty smooth one, and that was definitely uncommon when it came to Vision's realization along with the rest of the team. They would expect some company with the air patrolled Sentinels as of previous times, but nevertheless they had gotten away successfully with some casualties on the machine's side. This change was welcomed by the team who accompanied Vision, them chatting a bit among each other as they mentioned that perhaps the machines had finally learned their lesson but for Vision, she knew it was something more.

It had bothered Vision to a certain extent but it was not her position to be concerned with such matters. Though perhaps this change would bring some curiosity within their ruler and that would mean sending her off again for another mission so soon. And perhaps her instinct was right especially when their transport stopped at the landing dock, and her with the team then descended down from the aircraft to only meet with one of the messengers waiting for them. But despite that, Vision only gave a short nod towards the messenger before he left and gave a short turn of her head towards the rest of the team.

Not needing to say anything, she then departed into different directions as they head back to their quarters and for Vision, she headed towards the 'throne' room where she knew her mentor would usually be. Her loyal canine companion followed beside her at all times as they both proceeded to that specific room. Any passing soldiers or staff at the corridor who had greeted her, Vision only responded with a simple nod of her head to acknowledge them. Then again, there was no time to delay in small chats and she was not one to really mingle anyways. Soon, both owner and canine reached to the room, with Doom present in the room, just like she would had predicted him to be.

Taking off the face mask as soon as she entered into the room to only reveal her attractive features, along with her auburn hair then unbound to flow down her back to almost touch her waist, she walked further ahead before lowering her upper body into a bowing position towards the other figure present in the room, her mask clutched to her side, beneath her arm. The black Dobermann seated itself down beside the female, though its head lowered down as well as if knowing to show respect even to the ruler.

"Vision, at your service, my liege." The female spoke with her head still lowered only until Doom gave permission to be at ease.

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Sun Oct 23, 2011 1:51 am

[Mount Kailash]

Men with guns and mutants. That was all Tag ever saw out here. Tag's host was probably a mutant, not that she would hold that against him. The rest of the people there were herded at the temple. Tag didn't quite understand the concept of prisoners, but she did know the feeling of being caged.

Whatever these people were doing, they were trouble and every instinct in Tag told her to keep away. Guns were dangerous, mutants were worst.

Hiram turned to Tag and she met his gaze unblinking, unquestioning. He shifted his gaze back towards the encampment and asked how hungry she was.

"Hungry." Tag replied at first in the plainest fashion. Any and all implications of Hiram's question was lost on the girl. There were only two things on Tag's mind, the dangerous men and her hunger. And right then, Tag cared more about the hunger. Her eyes gleamed with almost puppy-like sincerity as she added, "Very hungry."

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Tue Oct 25, 2011 9:57 pm

命❀~In the jungles of Cuba, Hisui~❀命

Had Hisui been visible, Ben would have seen her perk up immediately when he mentioned the supply run on the coast. She never mentioned it, but he had to be sure she was raiding supplies from the Primers, since she never took any of the supplies Mickey brought to Psychal's little group. If they had pulled everyone out of the jungle for this one, odds were good that it was something important. Which meant to her that it was a good idea to take it away from the militant mutants. It was too good a chance to pass up. She had been driving the Primers crazy for weeks, slowly horrifying the weaker members of the group, and relying on the clash of senses to baffle the few who had a vague knowledge of her existence. She'd seen a few vomit before because of the two sides of their brains warring about her very existence. Now it was time to throw yet another wrench in the Primer's plans for Cuba.

Without a word to Ben, she slipped out of the clearing, heading in the direction of the shore, towards the noise that had spooked them before. She passed straight underneath Cornelius, so secure in her illusions that she didn't bother looking around to see what had made the noise, and missed him entirely. Not that she would have stopped to talk if she had seen him. Slowly, the illusions around Ben faded, leaving him alone in the clearing. It wasn't unusual though. Hisui vanished without a word quite often. It wasn't that she disliked being around Ben or anything, she just refused to rely on anyone for anything anymore.

She snuck through the trees until she came to a stretch of sandy beach that didn't have any homes on it. It was surprising, considering exactly how much beachfront property Havannah had, but it was just another way for Hisui to make sure she wasn't detected in her approach on the supply team. They were a ways down the beach, with a couple of crates far larger than she could move by herself.

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Wed Oct 26, 2011 7:14 am

~Snap; Cuba, on the move~

Snap remained completely still till Ben and Hitsui left the clearing. The danger of an awkward meeting averted he relaxed. Didn’t Ben mention Primers? The two are going to take them on? He has to help! He made a little detour, to avoid his former friends, and headed towards the shore himself. Jumping from tree to tree, climbing trunks and branches he reached the edge of the jungle about sixty yards from Ben and Hitsui.
Sitting on a branch he peered through the leaves at the shore. The Primers were walking along the coastline. A few were armed but the most carried something. Snap didn’t like it, not one bit. They were in the open, no bush or tree near them. He felt well in the thick jungle among the trees, he even liked the tall grass of the savannah back in Africa, but this was just too bare… he would have felt naked. Suddenly one of the armed soldiers broke away from the group and headed for the tree line with hastened steps. Snap froze still as it seemed that the man is heading towards his position, but the soldier put his weapon on his shoulder as he got near the trees. Snap gave out a teeth filled grin. That’s more like it. Hit the music!

Snap considered which tree the man picked to do his business, and jumped over onto a branch of it. Snap started to climb down the trunk, head downward above the man as started to relieve himself. With the flashlight under his arm the man tried to hit bugs running all over the tree’s trunk as Snap quietly descended. The Primer was about to finish as he noticed soft scratching sound. He looked up and found himself face to face with a big red lizard. Snap stared him into the eyes, slowly opened his mouth and gave out a threatening low hiss. The man’s terrified, primal scream carried over the shore before it was cut short as Snap lashed out at his neck.
That should get their attention. Snap grabbed one ankle of the corpse and started to quickly drag it deeper into the jungle, leaving a clear and horrifying trail. He dumped the body at a small clearing once he was deep enough. Every trap needs some bait. He dived into the undergrowth to move back and ambush the soldiers who will eventually come looking for their comrade.

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Thu Oct 27, 2011 9:31 pm

[Mount Kailash]

Hiram stared into the wide, unquestioning set of eyes before him. No indication of anything beyond the most fundamental of considerations gleamed back out at him, telling him only that, as Tag said, she was hungry.

In the strange, vacuous space behind the girl’s gaze Hiram found himself gripped by the fullness of what he was thinking. On the one hand, the logical forefront of his brain told him how perfect it all was – this mutant, this girl, was the ultimate little killer. Fast and strong, without waste or pause in any of her movements, and lacking the questioning nature and moral scruple that hamstrung the brain in times of weakness. She was the perfect child soldier. Left to her own devices, she would kill to eat, kill to take, kill to live. What did it matter if her innate nature was given some direction?

On the other hand, however, her life was her own. It was unique to her, as his was to him.

Hiram sighed deeply as the war in his mind began to wind down.

Edging away from the old mass of stone, he pushed himself up against one of the withered trees nearby, slinging the rifle down into his hands and motioning for Tag to follow. He began loosening a length of dark, sodden rope from about his waist, glancing between two low-hanging branches that seemed to reach out towards one another from the petrified husks of their bodies. Those would do.

“Alright then.” He muttered, looping one end of the ragged twine around the closest branch. “We’re going to have to deal with this. You see the truck?”

He nodded in its direction, sidling over the snow to the other branch and tying the rope taut between them.

“I want you to get into it. Take a wide berth around the temple, and get in on the other side. The engine’s still running, so you won’t need to start it up. Once you’re in there, just hit the little peddle on the floor to get it to reverse. Take it…” He paused, narrowing his eyes in thought “…twenty meters down the path, then bail. Then you get to the trees and wait.”

He adjusted his posture, crouching down on one knee, and steadied his rifle upon the length of rope. His head rested, one nova-blue eye clamped shut, along its sights. He hadn’t promised her food, or given her any orders. He’d merely put an option before her. That’s all he’d done.


Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Fri Oct 28, 2011 5:03 pm

Minerva Hitaome: Shack

As Minerva made her way inside the shack, she looked around and noticed an almost familiar face or two. She wasn't surprised to see a large number of unfamiliar faces, as she never really got to know most of her class very well, choosing instead to stick to a close few. As she was about to explain herself to Mickey,(whom she assumed to be really mad that she didn't listen to his almost-order), a new voice joined the group, startling her. She felt a presence, but after a moment or two of trying to see where the sound was coming from, she quickly gave up and just listened to what was being said. Just as she gave up on finding the source, a man appeared in the middle of the group. She looked at the man, as if trying to remember who he was but failing miserably, until she recognized his face, and the name Kennedy. She felt a little unnerved that he knew all of their names..well, almost all of their names, so she looked around to see what everyone's reaction would be, still managing to look a little sheepishly at Mickey. She hoped he wasn't mad.

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Wed Nov 02, 2011 3:14 pm

-( In the Jungles of Cuba )-

It wasn't long before Ben found himself alone in the clearing, all signs of Hisui's illusion dissipating as she moved on the intel he'd gathered. It ticked him off whenever she did end their encounters so abruptly, but this was indeed the woman he'd been acclamated with since they first met back up on the island. He released a small chuckle as a thought crossed through his mind, "Here a minute, gone the next... She embodies her code name well, huh".

Ben turned back in the direction of his camp, he'd been gone long enough. He heard no barking in the distance or commotion, but thought it best to check in on them anyway. As Ben's boot hit the ground though, his heart tugged in the opposite direction. Hisui never needed help getting supplies before, but he couldn't justify simply leaving her to deal with them all on her own. He pushed the thought from his mind and made his way towards the camp. He could be on the coast in no time by simply flying over the trees anyway.

Re: X-Men AoA, Issue #1: Reunion

Thu Nov 10, 2011 1:33 pm

命❀~In the jungles of Cuba, Hisui~❀命

Hisui froze when she heard a scream coming from the jungle near where the drop off was. That meant there was someone going after the men already, providing a distraction. She didn't feel one way or the other about the fortuitous help she was receiving, only that if it turned against her after the Primers were all gone, she would fight. She continued across the sand, her illusion making it seem as if a wind was playing with the loose granules, instead of flat out hiding the fact that her weight was causing the sand to shift. To aid that effect, she was shuffling her footsteps in order to kick up some sand, and make it almost impossible to see that there were footprints randomly appearing in the sand.

She waited for all of the Primers to run off to see what had happened to their friend, and then slowly approached the box. It was much larger than the normal supply boxes she raided, almost as big as she was tall. She didn't open it, instead examining every inch of the box, knowing full well that there could be something dangerous inside, or that some mutant's powers could have booby-trapped the package. She took a few steps back from the box, and picked a seashell up out of the sand. Running her fingers over the shell for a moment, she quickly threw it at the box, waiting for a moment after it pinged against the side. Nothing happened. It wasn't surprising, considering that the Primers had been getting ready to move it, but it never hurt to check these sorts of things. So she stepped back up to the box, preparing to open it and find out what was inside.
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