The Mutant Apocalypse of Shady Side, Part 20 (Conclusion)
Posted on Sun Feb 11th, 2018 @ 2:56pm by Senior Headmaster Absynthe "Syn" Drake & Unawakened Carson Quinn & Category IV Dyami Bentley (Tribal: Bent Leaf) & Category V: Supervillain Frederick Hollywood & Unawakened Lauren McArthurs & Civilian Faustina (Tina) Cyparissus MD
Location: Shady Side, Maryland
Timeline: The Year of the Apocalypse - 22 January 2012
Lorde walked over to his old friend. After picking her up, he tried to console the unconscious woman. “It’s okay, Abusan. I will get you the help you need.”
Lightning streaked across the sky, tendrils spider webbing quickly, before running backwards to a singular point in the sky, creating a huge lightning bird which struck to the ground only a few feet in front of Lorde. The rumble of thunder peeled across the town of Shady Side, rattling homes and breaking any nearby windows that had managed to survive the battle between Seth and Wyrmwood.
When the debris cleared, Talon stood in a small crater blasted from the earth, body burning with sacred fire and surrounded by arcing electrical currents shaped like a very large bird. “I hope you are not trying to take her as a prize. That would be very unfortunate for you.” The words hissed from the firebird’s burning mouth.
The shaman’s arrival was far more fortunate than he might have known. “It would be more than worth it, if you ask me.” He gave his little friend a kiss goodbye on her bloodied lips. “If you can fix her now, you can have her now. Otherwise, I plan to take her to your medical facility.” He smiled at the tall Cherokee, with red stained lips.
The Indian shaman dropped the form of the Thunderbird and resumed his natural shape. “I can stabilize her here, so the trip will not harm her further. Place her on the ground.”
Lorde gave the dark man a look of disappointment, as though he had barely met the criteria of what the madman had asked for. He laid Syn down on the ground very carefully. “Why don’t ya see if there is something slightly better in that sack of yours than aspirin, huh?”
While Lorde was placing Syn on the ground, Dyami was doing exactly what Lorde was suggesting, pulling out a few things from his bag. One was a plain white handkerchief. Before beginning his ritual, he said, “Uh, wait, you have a little schmutz on you.” He reached out with the handkerchief and gently wiped the blood from Lorde’s lips. “Thank you for your help,” the Indian man said with a knowing smile.
“Oh. Um, thanks.” Lorde became impatient. He raised his hands and called upon the name of a long forgotten goddess to aid him in the casting of his spell. White light flowed from him into Abusan’s body. Some of the wounds on her faded.
Talon knelt beside his oldest friend and began performing the shaking hand ritual, chanting quietly under his breath. His hand began shaking and glowing blue. The light spread quickly to his fallen comrade and more of her wounds closed, yet she still remained unconscious. “She will survive the trip back to the Tower. I will take her now.”
The hero bent down and picked up his friend. He spoke a few word in Tsalagi, and a portal opened to the medical bay in the Tower. Talon paused before walking through. “Again, thank you for helping her. I have been told you were once friends. Perhaps you can tell me some time of your path to the dark side.” The muscular Indian then stepped through the portal, which closed quickly behind him.
It had been that kind of day. No one else needed to die today. Not even these assholes. “Okay, people, gather up the injured of the town then get ready to bug out.” Lorde used his boosters to shoot back into the air and rally up with the Watch. There was no need to go into great detail just then, as there would be videos for them to watch in the war room later.
Jesse pulled up in the car. The whole town was in chaos. He watched as people ran the streets. Men, women, and children, ran the streets, faces dirty and panicked. Mothers carried small children, men loaded up their family cars to get out. Emergency services tried to attend to the most needy people. Looters ran in and out of shops, carrying arm loads of stolen merchandise. There was suddenly an explosion, and a fireball lurched into the sky. Shooting his gaze towards the sound and sight, he knew where it was coming from. “No...” He turned the car down the side street and headed towards the direction.
Lauren looked up as she saw the car approach. Her head still felt foggy, tired, but she scanned the destruction. For about a meter around her, the pavement was utterly vaporized. Beyond that, scattered bits of pavement and debris from the nearby houses were scattered haphazardly across the shattered ground. The houses and cars of friends were destroyed, broken, and burning. Shady Side would take a long time to recover from this, if it ever did.
The car approached, and Lauren watch it slow to a stop. Her eyes scanned the destruction as it did, and when they fell on the body that lay on top of the pile of debris near what once was the Hendersons’ front porch, her heart sank.
“No...” she breathed, pushing herself to her feet as she stumbled around debris toward the body. “Please, God, no...”
God did not answer her prayers.
The body of Tina Cyparissus was battered and bloody, with one leg and an arm bent at unnatural angles. What was left of her clothing was badly torn, bloodstained from a dozen gashes along her limbs, torso, and face. A huge gash in her forehead from where she’d struck the wall spread red blood through her dark hair and over her once beautiful face. Her dark eyes were open, frozen in a glassy expression of shock.
“Tina...” Lauren sobbed as she fell at her friend’s side. She reached out to take Tina’s limp hand in hers. “No... not again... please, God, don’t do this again...”
Jesse jumped out of the car. He looked at the woman who was sitting there with tears down her face. He couldn’t see who was laying there. Briskly walking up, he looked down at the contorted body of Tina, “Fuck! Fuck, fuck, fuck! NO!” he yelled as he knelt down, seeing her body. His lower lip started to quiver, and tears started to well up in his eyes. He lightly touched her face. Tears started to stream down his face. He was blubbering while he was trying to get his wits about him. Looking at the woman that he didn’t know, he demanded between tears, “What… What happened? What is happening!”
“It’s... It's complicated,” Lauren replied mournfully as she stroked Tina's lifeless hand. Her spirals began to glow faintly, as though even her skin was exhausted. “She was hurt in the battle. I-I think she’s... she’s gone. I ... I'm sorry ... um….” Looking up to meet his face, the purple-spiraled meta gave a small frown. “I'm sorry. I don't think we've met before. I'm Lauren. You know -- knew - Tina?”
Jesse looked at the purple spirals. It startled him at first. He had counseled a few mutants, but he just wasn’t expecting it. He sat back and just stared at the dead body of Tina, his beloved Tina. “Jesse. Jesse Davis. Yes, we are old … friends.” He dropped his head in between his legs and stared at the ground, tears falling from his face. His shoulders shook with every sob he took. Looking back up, seeing her dead body… Would he ever love again?
Lauren touched his shoulder, tears rolling down her cheek. “I’m sorry,” she whispered again. “She ... She was a wonderful friend.”
All Jesse could do was nod. There was nothing more that he could do. Nothing he could muster from his lips.
They heard the gasp before they saw the result of it.
Tina’s eyes seemed bright with life as they darted back and forth, the rise and fall of her chest uneven, but definitely visible. She blinked a few times, taking in her surroundings. She saw Jesse before he saw her, though when she met Lauren’s gaze she saw only horrified shock staring back at her. “Ow.”
“Tina,” Lauren breathed. “How?”
Tina groaned. “How am I named Tina? Ask my mother.”
“No.” Lauren shook her head, moving away from Jesse and back to her friend. “You... You were... dead!”
She groaned again as she tried to push herself up. She cried out as she attempted to put weight on what was clearly a broken arm, and let out a curse in Greek. “Being dead would hurt less. Damn it! Ow!”
Jesse just stared at her, eyes wide and mouth open. He didn’t know what had just happened.
Lauren turned to Jesse. “She needs medical attention.”
“No shit,” Tina grumbled. “But I've got this. I need to get back to the clinic. I can deal with my arm and leg there.”
“Tina, I really think that...” Lauren protested.
“Lauren.” Tina gave her a pointed look.
Lauren sighed, frowning, but gave a small nod. “You're sure?”
“Like last time?”
“And you'd rather not...”
Tina shook her head. “Besides, if the Underground is discovered, we're all in trouble.”
Lauren gave a slow, accepting nod before turning to Jesse. “Can you get her home? To the clinic, and can you keep her safe?”
“Yes I can!” Jesse said. That's all he could say. He was speechless. What had just happened?
“Good.” Lauren nodded, then turned back to Tina. “If you...” Her voice trailed off. “Call me later, okay? Let me know that you’re alright.”
“Yes, mom,” Tina grumbled. “Go. Get to the jet.”
Lauren nodded again as she rose to her feet. “We’ll talk soon.” With that, she turned and sprinted toward where Syn had fallen.
Dyami, relieved of his most pressing task, that of returning Syn to the Tower, opened another portal back to where the dragon lady had fallen. Holding the portal open, he turned to one of the techs and said, “I will be returning shortly. I need to see if anyone was left behind.”
The tech nodded his response and watched as Dyami step through the portal, disappearing with a small flash of light.
The portal opened exactly where his last one had closed only a few moments earlier. Talon stepped through and, upon gaining his bearings, reached into his bag and pulled out a handful of small birds made of leaves. “Go into the surrounding area and search out our friends,” he said to the small leaf birds. “Lead them here, or return to me if they cannot make it on their own power.”
The Indian shaman spoke words of power, and the birds became full of life and fluttered away, seeking anyone who was left stranded.
“Talon?” Lauren called as she saw his portal returned. Now that the immediate crisis of Tina had been dealt with -- Jesse was helping the doctor to her feet -- Lauren felt her fatigue return with a vengeance. It was true what they said about adrenaline. When needed, the human body could do amazing things, push exhaustion out of the way, and deal with a crisis. Only as soon as that crisis passed, even just a little, the exhaustion came back. Adrenaline was nothing more than a temporary measure, and her Awakening had left her beyond exhausted. She’d been less tired after giving birth to little Bryan and his refusal to sleep at night, even before the colic!
She stumbled as she moved toward the portal, tripping over her own feet as she tried to reach the portal. She could see him standing before it, releasing what looked like birds from his palms. “Talon!”
“Spiral!” Talon could see that the woman was spent and gave her a helping hand. “This portal leads to the medical ward.” Dyami helped the woman to the shimmering disk of water surrounded by fluttering leaves. “I am going to see if my birds find anyone else before I return. It is good to see you survived,” Dyami said with a smile on his face.
She offered a weak smile back. “I think... I awakened. Syn was hurt. Did you find her?”
“Yes, I have just returned from bringing her back to the Tower,” the Indian hero replied. “She was pretty beat up, but she will recover.”
“Good, good.” Lauren nodded, stumbling as she moved toward the portal. She looked back at the edge of the disruption. “Thank you, Talon.”
She didn’t wait for a reply as she stumbled through to the medbay.
Once Spiral had gone through the portal, Talon waited until the last of his birds had returned. Seeing that there were no remaining allies in the area, the shaman took one last look at the sky. Closing his eyes, he spoke a prayer to the Great Spirit, interceding on behalf of the souls of those who lost their lives on this horrible day.