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F-ing Diabolical


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Britannia last won the day on March 12 2023

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  1. A subtle nod was returned to the other supe's thumbs up. Truth be told, Britannia was still completely winging it. She could see Ashley pacing a little in the distance, looking perhaps a little worried, though then again, when didn't that woman look stressed about something or another. "Even after the sprinkler incident?" She shot a small glance towards the camera, a look on her face that was halfway between holding back a laugh and apologetic. "Sorry again about the rug Ashley. In my defence, there wasn't a sign telling me I couldn't smoke in there. I am certainly not used to that part at the very least, it used to be far more common." Britannia's pause was longer on that question. Her mind thought back to just a week after she had been freed from the tube. She was stood atop the viewing platform on the Empire State Building, simply looking down at the world. Everything was different, the clothes, the attitudes, even the small details in people's mannerisms and language had changed to the point where she felt almost like an alien on a strange world, or a ghost from the past trapped in its own era while the rest of the world had moved on. Even surrounded by a sea of people in a bustling city, she had never felt more isolated, more terrified on a deep existential level than she had ever been before in her entire life at that moment. "It ehm, the answer to that one is more complicated than you might think. In short as to what has changed, it would be quicker to list the few things that have not. I'm afraid I don't have a quick and snappy answer for you." The supe had even considered throwing herself off the edge right there and then, even though that likely would have done a whole lot of nothing save for making a scene what with all the enhancements granted to her for a purpose that no longer really existed by people now long returned to the earth. It was then she felt a hand on her shoulder, and heard a simple "are you ok there?" "My government coined the term "enhanced combatant" for people like myself and Soldier Boy. Our purpose was rather singular, as you can probably gather from the name." She snapped around, hands instantly burning with barely concealed power, her well trained mental "safety switch" holding back against startled defensive instinct for that brief moment before conscious thought stepped back into the room as she saw herself looking at a tall man with tan skin, slick black hair, and a concerned look upon his well defined features. She simply gave the man a quick answer to the affirmative teamed with a slightly shaky falsified smile. "Now I believe the term used today is 'super abled', no? I feel like that's fairly telling in of itself. People like myself don't have to be 'enhanced combatants' anymore. A good example of this is sitting right next to me in fact. A singer, an actress, a performer as well as a superhero. That certainly took me by surprise." They talked until the dark murky blue of the very early morning gave way to the amber glow of the sun poking through the horizon, glinting against the impossible skyline of steel and glass that stretched before them. She never said who she really was to him, the years of training and experience in espionage tradecraft made it no hard matter for her to paint just enough of the picture without revealing all of it as they spoke of the world, of Britain, of America, of the news, even of the weather at one point and how she had expected it to be smoggier. It all helped, even if she had to keep the core of the matter hidden under a veil. "I'm looking forward to it all, I must say. This is the world we fought for, even if it makes me feel like a bit of a relic at points. We took up arms against an Axis of evil, went forth like fire from the barrel of a gun, so that the generations after us wouldn't have to." It was only as the two were turning to leave that the man dropped the hint that he knew at least partially who she was. Saying that he only knew her as a "concerned citizen of his majesty's commonwealth", the throwaway line she had used when ambushed by the media near immediately following her unearthing, and would much rather know her by her actual name instead. "I'll let you all in on a, well, I suppose it's not a secret as such. When I was a child, I always wanted to be on the silver screen. To have my name up in lights one day like Vera Lynn. Even during my service, my thoughts were sometimes on just what I would do and what would become of me once my time was done." "What? You were on TV. It's ok, I'll go first. Name's Alex." He extended a hand towards her, a slightly goofy smile having long since replaced the look of concern on his face. "Unless you know, all the suave mysterious cloak and dagger is part of the whole thing. I know what they're li-" She cut him off, returning his smile and reaching out her own hand to shake his. "Eliza. My name's Eliza, and um.. a-and it's been nice meeting you." "I never really had a plan for that before though. Not really. I didn't have time to. Everything was duty and service. I supposed I figured that I would just have to cross that bridge when I came to it." She hadn't figured that she would ever meet him again. New York was a big place after all, even in her time, let alone today's. Though she could not help but notice one of the figures standing hands-on-hips in a heroic pose, all decked out in a mostly white costume with a red star adorning the chest, and with a slightly goofy smile upon his well defined features. "Well. I suppose this may just be the bridge. Not the one I was expecting, a rather unusual one for sure, but when does life ever turn out exactly the way we expect?" @MATT @Morrigan
  2. The old supe nodded, her tone turning more somber as she spoke. "I do, yes. Though from what I heard about how he went out, well, I don't think he would have wanted it any other way in those circumstances. If he's out there, somewhere, looking down on everything and everyone, he probably has a smile on his face." She looked over towards Starlight for a moment, her expression trying to convey a "am I doing this right? I have no idea." type of question before carrying on. Truth be told, her previous experience was playing dividends here by the looks of it. Analyse the situation, say what they want to hear. Perhaps a strange way of going about an interview but hey, she had never done one of these newsreels before. That one threw more of a curveball. What would people want to hear? She went over all the things she could say in her head. Too much honesty? Well, Vought wouldn't like that. Too much BS? The public would see right through it. There was certainly a line that had to be towed here. "That would depend on what you mean by "heroism". Anyone can be a hero. Five minutes more bravery in the face of something that most would run from is, a lot of the time, all it takes. As for this new generation of "superheroes", I will be frank and honest here. I'm not sure I quite understand it all yet. I am sure it will all make sense in time, but you have to remember that from my perspective, it has only been a month or so since the axis was defeated, rather than almost 80 years. A lot of things are fairly confusing to me, honestly. Starlight has been helping me with that a lot." @MATT @Morrigan
  3. Even after all the poking and prodding of the makeup artists, and all the preceding hustle and bustle, the shift to going live and getting asked all these questions still took Eliza a bit by surprise. Still, she straightened up in her chair, adjusted her new "super suit" just a little and gave what she at least hoped was a winning smile for the camera all the same. Eliza paused to think, mulling over just how to give a response to that. The future had been strange to say the least. There were many things that, from her perspective, were almost alien in how they worked. Sure, some things had been almost predicted in works of science fiction, from the compact portable communicators worn on the person of almost everyone to even some of the fashion sense, but others had seemed to come out of almost nowhere. Even researching such things had been difficult, what with libraries had become scarcer that before. Did fewer people read nowadays? Perhaps that was yet another thing she would have to ask Miss January about. Oh, right, the question. To begin with, she took on a more official sounding tone, starting with simply stating how she couldn't divulge certain information under the official secrets act of 1939. It was no lie of course, but, she figured at least it'd serve a dual purpose in both managing the expectations of a no doubt interested public and amping up that "image" she had been told so much about. "Still, I can tell you this much as the information has already been released as far as I know. My name is Eliza Hays. I was born in 1919, and served British intelligence during the second world war, first in signals and codebreaking, then as a volunteer for the 'enhanced combatant program'. Both Fritz and the United States had their own you see, and we didn't particularly want to be left out of it all. " Britannia stifled a small laugh, thinking back to the overly patriotic supe, all dressed up in his old GI gear, barking orders to American infantrymen in his clipped "movie star" like tone. "I met him quite a few times, yes. I would even consider him as a friend. We did not often serve together though, our specialisations and duties often led to us having very different objectives even in the same theatre. You know, he still owes me five dollars. The man was not quite as good at poker as he professed to be." @Morrigan @MATT
  4. The second world war supe continued to just look on at the assembling crew, watching slightly warily as they pulled out pieces of what to her were near unidentifiable pieces of equipment in the vague shapes of what she once might have known. Cameras made out of black plastic and metal with strangely glinting lenses and no reels or crank attached, and odd pill shaped things either being held in their hands or on the end of large boom arms covered in a strange almost fuzzy looking fabric material. Those, she reasoned, must have been the microphones. "A... show? I would have thought we would have been given more prep time for that. I'm not even sure what sort of routine these people would want. If they want me to break out into a song and dance number they might end up being sorely disappointed. I've never had the talent for such things." She paused for a moment, letting that deadpan delivered comment sit for just a moment before cracking a smile. "Joking. Answer the press' questions, build up the mystique a little like it's a cheesy radio drama. I think I can probably do that, just, let me know if I'm about to make a fool out of myself here." That smile faded a little when she heard what Starlight had to say next, however, being replaced with a look more tinged with concern. The woman's previous job description definitely did not include all the glitz and glamour of showbusiness, but, being able to get a good reading on people was certainly part of it. She considered her words carefully before speaking up next. "I understand that until recently it was thought that people like us were born, rather than made. I... am sorry that you had to go through that at such an early age. I had a choice in what happened to me, I volunteered. Can't imagine what it would have been like otherwise. Listen, if you ever need to talk, I'm always here-" "Oh it's good to meet you Britannia" Britannia turned to face the voice, even with her sentence interrupted and its previously serious subject matter, she once again put as genuine a smile as she could manage back across her features as she reached out a gloved hand to accept the handshake. "Likewise! I assume we are almost ready to start? Lovely location you have picked out here by the way. Positively enchanting. Are you all set up over there?" We are going live in a few minutes, can we get someone over here to fix Britannia’s makeup she is looking shiny.” "Ah, yes, sorry. I flew here instead of waiting in traffic. I suppose they don't design cosmetics with that in min- woah." She took a step back, flinching a little at the suddenness of the makeup artist getting to work right there and then! Though, after a quick joke comment about it and a barely suppressed sneeze, she soon held still enough for them to do their thing. She quickly had a look in the kit's compact mirror, raising a brow, and muttering something along the lines of "I suppose it isn't rationed anymore" before sitting down just as asked. "Well then, let's get this 'show' started."
  5. "Ah, right." She took a last couple of drags and quickly tossed the cig away, stepping on it with her reinforced boots before looking back up with a slight smile, her tone turning more jovial despite the old enhanced combatant looking perhaps a little annoyed at Ashley's request at first. "Not 'on brand' I take it? Fine, if you want your 'talent' with an active nicotine craving clawing at them for your interview." "Oh trust me, I have seen faaaar worse. Nicotine cravings are the least of my worries." "I'm assuming that I don't particularly want to know about this 'worse'?" "Probably not, and you didn't hear that from me, ok? That's classified. Right! Well, cameras'll be here soon so I'd better go get back to it. Don't. Screw. This. Up. It's both our asses if you do." Brit simply watched as Ashley turned and left, the talent director pausing only to give Starlight a quick nod in reply to her reassurances. Meanwhile the supe was simply looking over all the cameramen and audio specialists scrambling to get all their strange looking equipment set up. She was able to recognise that this box must have been a camera, and those tubes must have been microphones, but their shapes and forms still seemed so bizarre compared to the old equipment she was used to seeing for the newsreels following folk like Soldier Boy. She turned to face the other supe, returning her smile as she hefted the big 'shield of victory' a little, making it sit more comfortably upon her arm. "I'm actually rather nervous about this." A small chuckle escaped from her. "It's almost funny really. Jerry's biggest guns didn't make me feel such a way, yet a canon is giving me cold feet. Brit took a deep breath and changed her stance a little. She wasn't even quite sure how to stand for one of these things. Should she look all heroic? Stand tall and flex slightly like Benjamin always did with a cheesy grin? Perhaps looking stern, serious and slightly dangerous is what would please the audience? Or would the crowds be more into a more casual relaxed vibe? She ended up relaxing her shoulders a little, and taking a couple of deep breaths as per Starlight's suggestion there. It certainly did seem like she knew the way of this sort of thing. "Act natural, okay, I can probably do that. Say, how long have you been doing this? The interviews, the cameras, the showbusiness. You certainly seem comfortable with it all."
  6. It was a rather odd building Hays had found herself standing in front of, or, at least odd by her reckoning. A gargantuan sprawling mansion hewn from gleaming white stone and unusual rooflines formed into a strange exaggerated pastiche of an old French chateau, all dressed up in the garish red-white-and blue banners of the "American Hero" franchise towered over her. All around the grounds she could see media, cameramen, sound recorders, and other general Vought International busybodies all running around, occasionally tailing after what she presumed to be a supe of some description, given the garish attire. At least she'd been able to browbeat the costume designer into adding pockets to her own getup. Calling the initial draft a "clown suit" likely didn't win too many friends, but, it seemed to get the point across. Truth be told, she was in fact decently happy with how her 'super suit' had turned out in the end. Perhaps it was a little tight, maybe even what some from her time would have considered a little scandalous with how closely it fitted her form, but, it was certainly less draggy than the Special Air Service hand-me-downs she'd been issued with way back when. It even had some actual armour too, though, she had at least some doubts about it. It all felt a little too light for what was advertised. Either way, the old shield would more than make up for that if push came to shove. "Britannia! Hey! You know, that 'concerned citizen of his Majesty's Commonwealth' thing? People loved it! Just a few details we have to go over..." "Ma'am?" "Pssh, please. Ashley. Call me Ashley. Listen, the ratings are good, points are all on track, that debut script's almost done, you're gonna love it! We've just about sorted all the paperwork too. Oh! And we're teaming you up with Starlight, marketing seems to think we're on to a hit there." "I am hearing a "but" on the horizon. Something's bothering you, what is it?" "Oh no no, no bother. Just... Ok, so, I understand you aren't used to some things yet. I get it. Some people are probably going to want an interview, do you know what to do in an interview?" "Not typically my wheelhouse I must confess. I'm not sure why you have me doing this sort of work, surely our time would be better spent going after that insurgent cell analytics managed to ID? Our window's closing, they won't stay above ground forever." "See, this! This is why we love you! Look, ok, this is important. Work with me here, and I'll work with you. So, smile for the camera, don't screw it up, don't make us look bad and for god's sake put that cigarette out." TAG @Morrigan@MATT
  7. "Seventy six years." She reached a slightly shaking hand into one of the pockets on her uniform, pulling out an old cigarette case, its contents seemingly just as well preserved as she was, and struck a match. The old supe's eyes continued to trace over the skyline as she took a long pull, trying to find anything familiar amongst the glass and steel monoliths that dotted the city beyond the park and finally responding to Starlight's question with a simple "Yes. Yes it has." Britannia nodded to Starlight's suggestion of talking more later, even putting on a small smile again for a moment. "That would probably be for the best. I imagine that I have missed a lot of history from down there. How time flies..." Another pocket reached into, this time her hand came out of it holding an old pocket watch of all things. She gently tossed it up and down in her hand a couple times, before tweaking the crown, twisting it three times left, and once right, muttering something about it being a shame about losing such a thing, before tossing it into the pit she had crawled out of just a few minutes ago. KRAK... fzzzz.... The hole in the ground glowed brilliant shades of red, gold, and orange! Sparks of molten metal and thick black smoke flying from its depths, the fireworks lasting all but a few minutes until they finally died down again, returning the park to silence once more. "Well, that seems to have worked. Can't be leaving any secrets behind for just anyone to stumble into now, can we?" TAG: @MATT @Morrigan
  8. The old supe raised a brow, and simply gestured towards the still misty hole in the ground and dented in cryopod door. "New in town? Yes, I suppose you could say that." She said. "Although by the look of things, I may have actually been here for quite some time." She paused, looking around for a second, her eyes scanning over the skyline, tracing for landmarks. Almost everything about it looked almost alien to her. Strangely smooth buildings of seemingly made of nothing but impossibly strong glass glinting in the moonlight jutted up higher than the cloud layer. The noise too, the noise was all wrong, the noise and the smell. Then, her search turned to the billboard. That was just as confusing, it seemed to be an advertisement of sorts. Perhaps a movie poster? She looked at it for a bit, taking in the details. As "ID" went, it wasn't exactly convincing to her. In fact, it simply added more credence to the whole "performer" theory she had earlier. Still, it also furthered the burning question she had in her mind that she'd almost been too scared to ask. "Say, what year is it?" She finally asked, her tone wavering ever so slightly from the firm, businesslike 'stiff upper lippedness' it held before. "I am assuming by some of the buildings this is New York, no?" TAG: @MATT @Morrigan
  9. Starlight's response got a raised brow and even a slight smile from the woman. Safe to say, she was not expecting the woman dressed as a 'circus performer' to have so hard an edge, but, it was definitely something she could work with. "Five seconds." Her tone was still just as harsh as it was before. "This is your last chance." She was just about to fire off a burst directed at his hand, more a warning shot really rather than anything designed to cause lasting damage, when Starlight spoke again, this time mentioning the "Seven". Britannia paused, frowning for a second, trying to put the pieces together. "The Seven? I can't say that I've heard of that particular name." Perhaps the performer attire was just a front? An infiltration technique perhaps? Just what had she stumbled in on here? "A branch of the police perhaps? Certainly a strange uniform for such a thing, I don't suppose you would have any identification to that effect if that's your profession?" She kept the pressure on, though, still holding back from doing anything actually harmful to the man, more doing so as just a reminder that she indeed hadn't forgotten about him. "If you have the resources to detain this individual and get the information we need, I'm sure my government will want to follow up with you on this matter so we can get it all settled." Tag @MATT @Morrigan
  10. The old supe gave something akin to a snarl, wiping the spit away from her face with the back of a gloved hand. Her tone was still rather nonchalant as she looked to Starlight for a moment, almost as though she was just casually discussing the weather rather than preparing to use some "enhanced interrogation techniques" on their captive. "You may want to look away, miss. I'm afraid that making this man talk could get a little messy. Right. Down to business." She leaned in a little harder, pressing the shield into the man but being very measured in just how much she did so, applying just enough to cause pain but not enough to do any real damage. "You clearly know at least something of who I am, considering how this malarkey of yours seemed to be targeted. With that in mind, how far do you think I'm willing to go to get the information I need?" She then shifted position slightly, moving over a little, her eyes glowing and her hand sparking right over the man's left hand. "You have ten seconds. Talk, or you will never use that hand again. After that I will move on to your other one and perhaps even get a little more creative. How do you think you'll do without your fancy little darkness shaping tricks, hmm? " tag @MATT@Morrigan
  11. Was it the Reds? Jerry remnants?" She pressed a little harder with her shield into the man's neck, not quite enough to cut off his airway but certainly more than enough to serve as a reminder. Her eyes starting to glow once more too as her voice lowered into almost a growl. "Talk. I'm not going to ask so nicely again. Think about what you have to lose." Tag: @MATT @Morrigan
  12. The surging ball of darkness ripped past Brit's ear, tearing huge chunks out of the concrete fountain she had taken cover behind. Still, she bided her time, using the concealment of the smoke and the distraction presented by Starlight to plan her next move. Hostile was still talking, that was one thing. Starlight had him targeted too, so she had at least two ways of getting a solid bead on the man. She concentrated for a second, feeling the surge energy well up within her limbs. If just firing off a shot nearly sent her on her backside, just what would this do? She vaulted over the broken fountain, the cracked concrete crumbling beneath her sparking hand and broke into a run. Another flash. Convenient. She leapt up with a burst of lightning, a noise like ripping paper filling the air... And she didn't come back down. In fact she flew directly at the man, attempting to pounce on the shadowy figure, trying to pin him with her shield at his neck and force his arms down to his sides! "Well then! I trust you have gotten that out of your system, yes? I have a few questions if you don't mind." Her tone sounded almost jovial and friendly as she looked down at the man, though her voice soon hardened as her eyes started to crackle over with that same golden energy as before and she applied just a little more pressure. "Questions that my government will surely want to know the answers to. Start talking." Tag: @MATT @Morrigan
  13. Brit raised her shield, bracing as the surge of inky blackness came crashing in. It smashed against the shield with a resounding clang, forcing the old supe back hard against the wall, but, she kept her footing, her boots digging a deep furrow in the earth beneath her even as the force of the blow left a cracked dent in the brickwork behind her. Her response was instant. She began to march forwards with her shield raised defensively in front of her, tracking the unknown hostile both by her enhanced senses, and by Starlight's convenient "tracer" fire pointing her in the right direction despite the darkness. Her eyes began to glow with a crackling electric light, flickering slightly as she raised her hand. She looked somewhat pained for just a brief moment before she let forth a sharp bolt of brilliant golden lightning aimed directly at the shadow supe, its report reverberating off of the structures and concrete like the blast of a cannon. The woman stumbled a little right after though, a wave of nausea rolling over her for just a brief moment before she steadied herself. That shouldn't have happened, right? She'd done this plenty of times before. Why was it hurting so much? She moved to follow up, pulling a couple of old smoke grenades from the belt of her uniform and hoping like hell that they'd still function after all those years in the deep freeze as she tossed them to the ground in front of her to mask her movements as she started to flank around, staying low and behind whatever cover she could and readying herself to close to 'good ol' fisticuffs' range in order to make an attempt at pinning this shadowy assailant! Tag @MATT @Morrigan
  14. Britannia hauled herself to her feet. She could hear the scuffle just past the crater's mouth, she could even see the strange shadows and blasts of light dancing through the swirling cryotube fog. The old timey supe took a moment to take inventory. Her uniform and body armour had survived the freezing just fine, that was one thing at the very least, but her weapon apparently hadn't gotten off anywhere near as lightly, the barrel of the service pistol having warped and cracked into uselessness as it thawed. Her eyes then turned to what was happening above her. It must have been more than just a regular scuffle. She sighed, rubbing her temples for a moment before taking a deep breath and locking her shield to her arm. Truth be told, she had expected someone in a lab coat to come knocking, to tell her that her powers had regenerated her enough to put her back in the fight. She certainly didn't feel like she'd healed any. The two would finally see a figure emerge from the fog. The supe was most likely an odd sight to say the least; a woman looking to be roughly in her twenties clad in an armoured second world war uniform holding a shield emblazoned with the Union Jack in front of her. She paused for a moment, taking stock of the scene, her eyes glancing over the strange dark blob and what she presumed must have been some sort of circus performer getting up from the floor. What. Still, she raised her shield, getting into a defensive posture facing towards the blob of darkness. Surely that would be the bigger threat rather than some random dancer, no? Not to mention it said something about a job. That was... vaguely ominous. "And just what sort of job would that be?" She called out to it, starting to step forwards. "I would very much like to know what sort of employer would put you up to attacking some err... Dancer, I am assuming?" @MATT@Morrigan
  15. It was cold. That was the first thing Britannia was really aware of. Her eyes slowly opened upon dented twisted metal and thick spiderwebbed glass mere inches from her face, all half shrouded by a thick freezing fog with sickly yellow-white lighting filtering down from above through it all. It was loud too, chunks of crumbling concrete clanging against whatever casket she had found herself in, a loud hissing, and the piercing, incessant ringing of a small alarm bell. She winced, her body screaming at her as she managed to reach out an arm and grip onto a brightly labelled "emergency escape" lever. Nothing. Not even a hint of movement, it was as if it was simply an ice cold bar welded to the side of the icy metal tube. She made another attempt, then another, each time more forceful and each time just as fruitless save for a decently loud "CLANG" with each pull. It was getting harder to breathe. It was getting colder and colder too for that matter, she could feel her skin "burning" as the fog just kept rolling in. Even the alarm was starting to sound more distant somehow. Almost as though it was in some strange nightmare. She steadied herself and made one more attempt, this time balling her hand into a fist and striking the front of the capsule as hard as she could. It buckled, the thick metal bowing outwards. She tried again, managing to land another blow, the metal screeching in protest as the rusted and iced shut hinges finally gave way and what was left of the heavy "door" flew free from the crater, spearing itself deep into the ground a good few meters away! Fresh air finally flooded the casket, and she lay back for a moment, shivering and coughing as she tried to catch her breath. Tag Starlight, Morrigan
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