(2017-01-08) Ladies' Night Crimefighting
Ladies' Night Crimefighting
Summary: Goons go for an armored car heist. Their bad luck, three lady heroes are near enough to stop them.
Date: 2017-01-08
Related: None
NPCs: None
Scene Runner: Shuri
Social/Plot: Plot

An admittedly bitterly cold afternoon full of blustery wind, even without any snow to be found or felt, has set into the concrete canyons of Manhattan's high-rise lined streets. Yet despite the cold, the streets still team with people, though most of those people are bundled up like Eskimos and trying to briskly get from one place to the next as quickly - and warmly - as possible.

And in the midst of all that bluster and bustle, a little extra chaos reigns. Stoplights are meant to be obeyed, even by armored cars. But as soon as this armored car stopped, it was surrounded by a van that literally pulled out into traffic to cross its T, while another pulled up beside it and two more blocked it in from the rear. Men melted out of the crowd, masks revealed on hoodie-covered heads, as big weapons are revealed and brandished with intent. And it looks like two of the guys in the back are starting up some kind of torch lance, prepping to slice open that armored carapace like butter.

This is bad, and the civilians give screams, starting to pull back, pushing against one another as they try to get away from this. Granted, there are also some idiots trying to push in closer, cellphones out, trying to get videos and pictures of the event. Darwin award-winners all.

When you live in a place like New York City long enough, you get used to the blistering cold of its winters — as used to it as one can get, anyway. Adjusted enough that even today, as the chill seeps inescapably into the very foundation of the concrete jungle and right down into the bone marrow of its inhabitants, the streets are still bustling. This city never sleeps — and never is deterred, even by winter.

Among its throngs of shivering, chattering, bundled up city dwellers, Betsy Braddock feels right at home. This isn't where she was born — not even the Earth she was born too, really — but she has lived in this city so long that the way she weaves through people and navigates the city streets has become a second nature to her. Dressed up in several layers of clothes all concealed by the thick drape of an expensively purple, designer's winter coat wrapping her up like a cocoon, with thick, heeled boots and gloves of black leather for contrast, the woman rubs her leather-wrapped fingers together as she huffs white, vaporous air into the sky. She's here to get some shopping done — some clothes, perhaps a few useful utilities for the mansion. Just to relax, for a rare moment.

But that moment is not to be, as the screech of armored cars and hollar of armed, dangerous men helpfully elucidate. Her comfortably cold peace shattered, Betsy's amethyst gaze snaps up as she sees the armed goons getting to work, brandishing weapons threateningly. Her purple brows scrunch inwards, her lips purse.

"Oh, now that's charming."

A sigh of condensed lamentation slipping past her lips for her lost free day, the British-turned-Asian X-Man quietly gets to work; not yet drawing attention to herself as the faint pulse of violet psionics frame a butterfly corona over her gaze, touching the minds of the reckless bystanders — to compel them to flee, to retreat, to run. Once they're gone, well… -then- it's going to be time to really get to work. The faint fire of adventurous excitement in her eyes says it's not -entirely- unwelcome.

Despite the season and despite the cold, storm clouds gather improbably, to the point that an overcast day turns dark, if only for a brief few minutes. In the instant that firearms get pointed at the curious and the fleeing onlookers, lightning flashes. Brighter and more blinding than usually lightning is. In the second it dies down, there is a woman standing there that was not before. Tall and armour-clad, a large hammer in one hand. "Think hard on where you point those." Her voice low, authoritative. Despite the cold her arms are bare. THe cold doesn't seem to even register with her.

Despite holding herself as she thinks she should, the woman that calls herself Thor keeps telling herself over and over. Stand like this, say something that sounds good. Every moment is deeply analyzed before it can happen, the woman using every ounce of her quick wit as best she can. She really doesn't want to come across as… well, as the newbie on the block. "I will give you a moment to consider your next action." Hey, she can be fair.

The woman some know as Princess Shuri of Wakanda was no more looking for an event like this than anyone else this day. She had come to the city intending to visit the Wakandan Embassy, to make arrangements for a car so that she could make her comings and goings perhaps a bit less disruptive for others - it had been pointed out to her that a cloaking-capable Wakandan superjet really wasn't the most low-key transportation option - and was on her way to a bank to make arrangements for financial matters when she witnessed what she thought was the preamble to trouble.

It turns out she was right.

Shuri does not travel without her gear, and she has no secret to hide from anyone. But she uses stealth to her advantage, pulling back into an alleyway and making her way up a fire escape so that she can approach this scene unseen, mask on, optic lenses and built-in systems analyzing the enemy and their equipment. She waits for the right opening. They have not hurt anyone, yet.

The stupider of the bystandards are, one by one and then a few at a time, encouraged to flee. Some resist a tad more than others, but none have the training or will to actually push back against Psylocke's efforts, and they withdraw despite their foolhardy bravery.

The armed men lance open the back of the truck, and others brandish their weapons with intent, aiming them at the men inside. "Out!" they scream, ready to do violence if these men do not acquiesce. Heavily outgunned and outnumbered, the men do what their employers wich they would not: they toss down their firearms and jump out of the truck, giving up.

No matter how much cash there is, it isn't worth their lives to buy mere seconds before it is taken anyway.

Those amble to see the feminine Thor eye her wonderingly. There have been rumors, of course, but few have actually seen the woman who has become The Thunderer. Yet here she is, larger than life. They level their weapons a mite uncertainly. Can they really take her? Maybe she's not really Thor? Maybe she's not as powerful as he was? They have to try!

It seems they have considered. Unwisely.

There's really no time for relief; there never is. When the civilians take her psychic 'nudging' with only some momentary resistance here and there, Betsy Braddock's mind is already moving. Accounting for how long it took them to start moving, just how much time it might take these men to lose their tempers and grow violent — scanning surface thoughts in a bid to get a rough estimate of what she'll need to do, and when. She formulates a plan, entirely intent on taking on this situation by herself— and down calls the thunder.

It takes even the seasoned Psylocke by surprise, flinching backwards just a touch as lightning bolds flare within the cold winter skies like a trumpeting herald for a divine presence. And lo and behold — those violet eyes widen just a bit when they take sight of Thor. -Thor- of all people. Thor, the… woman? That amethyst gaze flickers in a confused blink, but it's a testament to Betsy's will how quickly she seems to get over it with the tension that rides up her legs in preparation. Just another one of those things to check off as 'different,' here. Besides. She's making it look good.

The Goddess of Thunder herself can probably take care of this, but she doesn't have to be psychic or feel those confused emanations from the men to know what's going to happen next. A telekinetic blade blossoms with violet life along her hand the second that Thor makes her ultimatum. Psylock is already weaving through the dispersing crowds as the men level their weapons. She's going a bit too early, but she adjusts her time table. And just as they choose wisely—

Telekinetic force cleaves through the barrel of a gun neatly as Psylocke flips her way into the field, spiraling upside-down through the air as her long, purple-clad legs whip about with a dancer's grace to snap booted heels into the backs of two of those armored thug's skulls with a sharp crack. "They -never- choose wisely," she remarks, distantly disappointed, as she lands.

Indeed she does. When the initial salvo hits, Thor remains standing where she is. Bullets hit her to no effect. She doesn't seem to be surprised. What she does seem to be is disappointed. There are many things she could do, but the physics of a vehicle engine when hit by enchanted uru metal is a topic that escapes her knowledge base. So instead she does something less likely to cause problems for anyone in a physical sense: she extends the arm holding Mjolnir, and lightning crackles from the hammer, hitting (and bursting) two of the tires on one of the vans the men used to arrive. "Someone should have told you how to better judge your opponent," Thor notes. That's when Betsy's telekinetic force slams and bends another gun that was taking aim.

"Or opponents," Thor notes. All the while thinking: …and it would have been good to know I was bulletproof before. Did I flinch before it happened? Yes, she's new. It's all a new experience in one way or another.

And as purple energy flares and lighting strikes and bullets fly … a Panther falls.

It's amazing, the way the physics of vibranium work. Shuri falls over a hundred feet almost straight down … and all she does is flex her knees as she lands right on top of that armored car's roof. She doesn't even dent the armor, though the suspension does rock a bit. But over ninety percent of that momentum just … disappeared. And now there's a feminine Black Panther crouched on the roof of the truck.

And then she's not. Shuri flips feet over head and comes off in a cartwheel of furious intent, right into the middle of those armed men. Claws snap into being at the tips of her fingers, and she slices through gun barrels as easily as her mighty and fast-moving feet and elbows and knees start in on the goons themselves.

And it does seem that she is not alone, because there is a purple-coated ninja, armed with vibrant psychokinetic fury, who is right in amongst that same fight.

And there is lightning, and a bulletproof Thor. And when those men charge, hoping stupidly, blindly to do with stocks and butts and boots what bullets cannot, there is sure to be the impact of uru, if not on car engines, then upon men and body armor.

It's quite a show.

That, also, is not something that Betsy was not expecting.

She catches a sliver of Shuri's presence in her surface scans seconds before the Black Panther herself slams into the roof of the armored vehicle with naught but a dent to show for it. Vibranium. Ever a wonder. The violet-haired ninja's gaze snaps up to look back towards the sight of the Wakandan princess even as Psylocke flips backwards, snapping a deft kick into the masked jaw of one of the men delivered with enough pinpoint precision to dislocate it, nevermind his poor head when he goes toppling over. She flashes the Panther a familiar smile.

~Guess this is -some- kind of girl's night out,~ her thoughts float to Shuri's, light and adventurous within that telepathic greeting. A psychic knife coalesces inside her left hand to complement the telekinetic blade of her right as she swivels on her heel, cold air billowing about her in a whirlwind of violet fabric as she stabs that psionic blade into the skull of another man to briefly scramble his thoughts and knock him unconscious.

She tries not to pry. She does. Sometimes, she can't help it, though; surface thoughts bubble up, and she catches them like stray whisps of smoke in the air. So when she 'feels' the uncertainty from a Norse Goddess, well — she pauses, briefly. Amethyst eyes blink. And then she looks up, to offer Thor a quiet, yet reassuring smile, as if to tell her that she's doing just fine without actually saying it, seconds before the violet ninja dives into the fray once more.

It says a lot about Thor's acting skills that she manages to hide the uncertainty and doubt. She just nods at Psylocke before her dark-eyed gaze fixates on two of them men rushing her. She darts forward, catching Shuri's appearance out the corner of her eye, though she cannot stop to do much now. She catches the gun from one man in her hand, bending the barrel into uselessness without much effort. She then jerks it from the man's hands before spinning and cracking it against the man's gut. She does not, of course, use her full strength, but still the man does go flying into his associate behind him.

"The men must be occupied with mean and boar," Thor says with a faint smirk. The sentence comes with a series of mental images, of feasts she accidentally interrupted in her few trips into Asgard proper. "Perhaps these knaves are more than a little irritated they were not invited?"

The Wakandan princess doesn't have much experience communicating telepathically, but thinking she does quite well and easily. ~Not quite what I had in mind. But you are right.~ she answers Elizabeth, while still in the middle of the fight. Betsy will have a clear view of the other woman's mind, as she evaluates the situation and the data flowing in from her sensors, and updates her intentions and actions.

There may have been quite a few men in this crew, but to be fair, none of them are up to dealing with these ladies. Thor's strikes, even holding back, are enough that single blows have the ability to take a fighter out. Psylocke is fast, smart, far better trained than they are, and knows what they're going to do before they do it. And Black Panther seems as impervious to their firearms as Thor has proven to be, and almost as physically efficient at dismantling them and their gear. The fight doesn't take all that long. But it is quite spectacular.

When it is over, when all of the goons have either been KOed or thrown their weapons down in abject surrender, the Black Panther finally pulls back and stops. This is not her country, and she will not levy her authority upon them, much as she might like to do so. Instead, she pulls out zip-ties from her kit and starts binding these men for the authorities, as she lifts her lenses to regard the other two women. "Psylocke I know." An accented voice, feminine but digitally altered, speaks. "You are … Thor?" she inquires of the blonde, a bit uncertainly. Apparently this is as new to her as it is to Betsy.

It's really a testament to how many — perhaps too many — of these situations Psylocke has been called on to deal with or dragged into, that she seems to practically be doing it like rote. Such habits can be dangerous to fall into, but for now, it works for her. Like going through the motions of a dance, her movements are limber and elegant, bending and twisting gracefully underneath weapons and enemies and punctuating the end of each fluid rotation of her winter-clad body with a spark of violence. A sword here, a foot there, both everywhere she can reach. Like a ballerina on a stage, or a warrior in her element. Beautiful either way.

"We'll just have to give them a firm slap on the wrist then, and clean up the boys' mess for them, I guess," Betsy freely jokes back with the Asgardian, flashing a brilliant smile on painted lips as she spins herself about to plant her heel in a man's solar plexus. She doesn't dare skim the woman's thoughts or pry deeper even with her curiosity — secrets are to be respected, after all. But it doesn't stop her from looking back every now and then, as if still legitimately surprised, until all the men have fallen into unfortunate, unconscious clumps.

"Very far from my plans for it, too," she says to Shuri once it's all said and done, catching her breath slowly as she rises back up to a full stand. "… but it has a certain kind of quaint charm to it, right? In a dangerous kind of way." Her smile is vivacious, inspired by the adrenaline in her veins as pink light crackles and bleeds away from her fingertips in dissapating streams of psychic energy. "Black Panther, a pleasure as ever," she greets the Wakandan, offering a pleasant nod for that more formal hello, before looking back at… Thor. "Thank you, by the way — for your help," she ventures, nudging a man with the toe of her boot. Just to be sure. "It would have been a big bloody headache if I had to try to go it alone."

Holding back is a good exercise, she finds. She does not want to break anyone - at least, she doesn't want to kill them. Thor is holding one of the last men in one hand, having lifting him straight off the ground. She threatened to fly, and the very notion seemed to scare the man enough to make him pass out. Maybe he's afraid of hrights. She turns, nodding in Shuri's direction. "I am Thor," she confirms with a firm nod of her head. She doesn't have to ask about Shuri's name, taking it from Psylocke as the woman speaks. Black Panther. Okay. "I am pleased I wasn't the only one to show up." A small smile touches her darkly painted lips. "Sometimes it seems the 'smaller' crimes like this go unintentionally ignored."

Shuri nods towards the female Thor as the three of them join up to talk, the men finally handled; they can wait for the authorities, now, as they should not be long.

"I am glad to help." the Black Panther offers, as she strolls forward and tends her hand towards Thor. "It is true, or so I have heard. My brother spoke often of this." she responds, regarding smaller crimes sometimes going ignored by various heroes. She offers a hand to Psylocke then, as well. "I … take it you are … the new Thor?" she queries, curiously.

Hands slide into the pockets of her winter coat as Betsy turns her attention towards Thor and Shuri. "The smaller problems fall through the cracks when people get too concerned with the big, large scale threats," she muses idly, pulling one hand free to tuck stray strands of violet behind the back of her ear. "Definitely doesn't make them any less important, though. At least to me. It's good to see I'm not the only one." She smiles, faintly, before looking back up toward the winter-cast skies.

"It's been a long time since I really got to stretch my muscles and let loose a little, though. That was kind of refreshing," she admits with a light laugh, before quieting to let the two discuss — staying alert instead for any sound of approaching sirens in the distance. Not a headache she wants to deal with.

"I am," Thor answers. Her body language is a bit too stiff, holding herself a bit too high, at her full height. No slouching for this one. IT is not the measured, practiced confidence of someone that has been at it so long. Most people might not notice these things, however. Thor tries very hard to come across as how she expects people expect her to do. Perhaps bordering a little too hard on the stoic side of things, despite how positively -incredible- being Thor feels. She'll loosen up. Eventually. "I was thinking the same thing."

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