Description: When Echo tries to take care of a little Shadaloo business with a local crimeboss in Metro City, Jax intervenes. Can the bionic man survive the dark necromancy of the darkstalker bat lady? Find out.
The downtown of Metro was a neon wonderland at night, all of the pink and red light shining off the wet streets like a aurora. Right now the place and person of interest was a club owner of a particular establishment that was known to have ties with connected people--that is to the criminal conspiracy that was alive in the city still. A tall, very pale slender woman walked along the sidewalk after getting out of what looked like an expensive black sedan, long black dress flowing and red designer heels clattering into the night. Despite being near closing time, the doors were still open--but what was someone like that doing down here...? And what was the strange unearthly feeling one got when she stepped on the scene?
The interior was the usual kind of sleazy strip joint, bar, stages--a lot of strobe lights and blue lighting running along the various dancing poles--but the woman who entered didn't seem to be here to dance... at least not in that way.
"You really should have been more accomodating, Charlie, you know my boss IS the evil one, and when he wishes you to die, well, you do," she grins, the mirror of the bar revealing her for what she really is--a humanoid bat creature.
Charlie was probably done for. The Special Forces had heard he was involving himself with Shadaloo, but they had no idea what the extent was. That, in fact, was the very thing Jax Briggs was headed over to ask Charlie. It was misfortune for all parties involved (save for perhaps the humanoid bat woman herself) that she had found him first. Charlie really should have been more accomodating. He's likely in the process of backing away slowly from the bar, perhaps looking for a method to defend himself.
Jax wasn't there. He was too busy listening to a podcast about barbeque, driving to the very same nightclub Charlie was about to meet his end in.
There wouldn't be any calls to emergency services at a place like this--they wouldn't want the authorities there if they could help it. Of course, Echo doesn't give anyone there time to reach a phone, either. As Jax drives down the street, a member of security is thrown out of an upstairs window somehow and lands right in front of his car--possibly on the hood, if timing was right.
What the fuck?
Would be the sensible thought here. Then again, this IS Metro City, and it wasn't too long ago when the place was attacked by Jedah Dohma. Shit is bound to get fucked up around here, when one leasts expects it.
Inside the club, the music is instead pumping and the lights have been activated... despite nobody seemingly being around. Though it looks like some glasses and bottles have been broken around the bar. The absence of life juxtaposed with the lively (if sleazy) atmosphere is a bit strange.
This car wasn't a company car, and so when the security guard crashes onto the hood, Jax's first instinct is to be annoyed by what's clearly going to be damage. It's quickly replaced with concern for the man, and he slides out of his car quickly, slamming the door behind him. He can't check the man's pulse -- not with these hands, but he does take a moment to see if the man is breathing. Whether he is or not, Jax hauls him up and shoves him in the backseat of the car, before heading towards the club proper.
His eyes trail around the sleazy joint, a half-scowl on his face. An abandoned strip club is creepier than it sounds. He finally finds where the VIPs are given access to the other areas of the club -- including up the stairs, and he begins heading that way, busting out his cell phone to thumb out a message to Sonya Blade, who was likely on her own mission tonight. His address is given to her -- he has an address she's texted him as well. They look out for each other.
The man was in fact breathing--though chances are people inside might not be for too much longer!
The VIP areas are what you might expect--compact lavishly furnished rooms with thick carpets, mirrors and dancing poles here and there. These are the kinds of places the girls really make their money--and the bartenders likely also take a cut of, in a place like this.
Towards the back is the stairs to the office, voices can be heard inside, seeing as the door is standing open. Further inspection reveal the door has been splintered broken free from the jamb where it locks, as if something wrenched it out, breaking it.
"You like girls that dance, don't you? would you like to dance with Elsie...?" Echo said to the man cowering behind his desk, the bat woman having already put herself between him and the gun that he tried to pull earlier.
In the gloom of the office, what looks like a legless, purple-tinted torso of a girl with long hair in her twenties with just the skirts beneath her fluttering about beneath her. She seems to be confused at first, then begins to float towards the man with a strangely gentle smile on her features.
Echo, the seemingly very pale and long dark-haired woman, is right where Jax can see her.
The situation looks very strange from Jax's point of view. He doesn't quite know what the hell is going on here, but it doesn't look good. He just squints his eyes before stepping forward, his bionic hand reaching out to settle on her shoulder. It's heavy but gentle, and so it matches his voice.
"Miss? I'm afraid Charlie here's already spoken for. Now if you need to talk to Charlie, I can facilitate that, but Charlie here is under arrest. I'm one of the good guys, alright? You don't got to worry about Charlie any more." He's trying to sound sympathetic -- Jax automatically assumes that this guy's a piece of shit. After all, in Jax's eyes, anyone who mixes themselves up with an organization like Shadaloo must be.
The woman turns as the bionic hand touches her shoulder. Something weird is happening with the image of her--like it's warping once his hand makes contact--the pale skin becoming evident as having fur, like a dog, or a rabbit--and the lips themselves having fangs jutting over them.
"Ooh! you scared me there~ looks like we got a live one here..." Echo turned more towards the man, blood red high heel clicking against the office floor, putting a hand on her hip. She had large leathern wings sticking out the back of that flowing, black as night dress--and she has fierce, orange-yellow eyes that seem to glow in the dark. The large ears are better for identifying what she really is: a bat. But the image all of a sudden is perhaps a bit too much for a regular human to take in. But Jax isn't necessarily normal, are they?
"I was going to do better than that, chocolate man, who are you, anyway?" she grinned a little, still with a bit of a frown, dismissing the creepy purple ghost with a flick of her wrist.
"Did you just call me chocolate man?" Jax's eyes blink, and he shakes his head. The fading woman -- and now the bat lady, both things catch him off-guard.
But Jax has seen some things. What he's seen is classified of course, and while this is certainly on the list of creepy, he manages to maintain his willpower and sanity in the face of such an anomalous being.
"Major Jax Briggs, Special Forces." As he speaks, he moves to circle the woman, hand shoving the desk out of his way in his not so subtle attempt to get between her and him. "Charlie here's officially in our custody. I don't know what you want with him -- maybe we can talk that out. But Charlie ain't dying today." He doesn't try to be intimidating -- though at three inches shy of seven feet tall, he's never had to try. He assumes this woman isn't afraid of him -- he probably wouldn't be afraid of much if he was a batperson either.
"Looks like you're someone with... powers, and special forces, to boot--I'm Echo Lacroix," she points at a finger at Charlie. "And that, is an individual that's outlived his usefulness," Echo just stands and watches as Jax moves around her and shoves the desk out of the way--she watches it careen across the floor and against the wall with some mild fascination.
"So... you're a cop, huh? Well there's nothing untoward going on up here, officer, except maybe down stairs," she shrugged with a little amused expression, likely meaning the den of debauchery in the VIP rooms.
"So, what will you do with him, hmm? give him a cookie, maybe a playful pat on the rear?"
"Echo LaCroix," Jax echoes (pun intended) the name back to the woman. He recognizes the name but can't for the life of him place it. Either way, his eyes shift down to Charlie, and then back up to the bat woman. "Well, if Charlie here outlived his usefulness to /you/, you won't mind if I take it from here," suggests the large man, his eyes briefly trailing to the door when she mentions downstairs.
"We're gonna ask Charlie here a few questions. What happens to him after that? Well, that's a little above my paygrade, lady," Jax admits. His bionic hand reaches down to snatch poor trembling Charlie up by the scruff of his shirt, pulling him effortlessly to his feet but turning sideways so that he's still positioned between the two.
"So if you don't mind, we'll be on our way."
COMBATSYS: Echo has started a fight here on the right meter side.
COMBATSYS: Jax has joined the fight here.
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Jax 0/-------/------=|-------\-------\0 Echo
"Well, that depends if you can make it out of here with him alive, doesn't it?" The bat woman's dress flutters as if in a cold breeze--but from where?--while the door leading to the office room slams shut, seemingly pushed by the wind that had blown past them.
"A little contest then, to see if deserve him--as failed and useless as he is," the woman drew in a very deep breath, the air around her seeming to grow colder as what exuded afterwards was visible, like mist.
"You, with your metallic arms and strength--and me, with all the powers of darkness!" a green field began to creep out from those high heeled feet of hers--forming what looked like a magic circle on the floor around her, some kind of bizarre arcane ritual, or marshalling unknown forces to her aid.
COMBATSYS: Echo raises arms, eyes glowing red as she conjures FELL MAGICKS to her aid!
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Jax 0/-------/------=|====---\-------\0 Echo
"...Shit." When the wind begins to pick up Jax takes a single step backwards, eyes flicking from wall to wall. He shoves poor Charlie hard, and the man falls on his ass and slides from the force of the push into a korner. Then the Major looks back at Echo, lifting his bionic fists in a stance that's more about efficiency than style.
"Shit," he repeats, when the green field begins to form around her, his eyes shifting down to the ground. Rather then try to get close to the woman he instead flexes bionic fingers and then takes a swing at mid-air. Parts of his arm seem to open up -- releasing a crescent shaped blast of purple concussive energy right towards the woman.
COMBATSYS: Echo instinctively blocks Jax's Advance Force.
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Jax 0/-------/-----==|=======\-------\0 Echo
"Oooh, you've got some nice toys there, what else can they do? You can show me later~" Echo brings her arms up and seems to take the kinetic blast from Jax's gauntlet arms like a champ--far less like a woman of her size and weight might have. though she's definitely not 'short' for a human, or humanoid woman--especially not with the shoes she's wearing. It does seem to knock her a little off balance, but at the same time she's grinning as a green ball of energy in one five-fingered, white-furred hand--extending it toward Jax and letting it go--some kind of weird green fireball!
"I can play catch too!"
COMBATSYS: Jax blocks Echo's Spirit Wrack.
[ \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\ < > //////////////////////////// ]
Jax 0/-------/-----==|=======\-------\0 Echo
"Shit," is Jax's third use of the word when Echo manages to block the kinetic blast. When she throws a green fireball back at him his eyes narrow, and he takes a single step forward, throwing a bionic arm up to take the brunt of the attack, though it scorches through Jax's jacket sleeve, revealing more of the prosthetic limb in its wake. Even the metal smolders a little, and the Major has a frown on his face, pensive while studying the batwoman.
Then he takes two steps forward, dropping his shoulder and coming in for an incredibly quick uppercut, aimed towards the woman's chin.
COMBATSYS: Jax successfully hits Echo with Quick Drill.
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Jax 0/-------/----===|=======\==-----\1 Echo
"I see you've realized what creek you're in," Echo watches as the man takes her magical bolt in one of his muscular-looking, bionic arms. "Here's hoping they're still under warranty--which is more than I can say for this guy," she gestures to the man Jax is protecting. When Jax darts toward her and lets rip with that fist--Echo is not able to move fast enough to avoid or block the attack--her chin getting bloodied in the process, head thrown back.
"Ahhh! ...well at least they're not fragile, good to know," she staggers back and wipes her face, flicking some of the blood into the air and leaving the left corner of her mouth a bit of a bloody gash.
As if called by the blood, a glowing blue, diaphonous spectre appears in the air, bringing a bony arm slashing down toward Jax! A feeling of immense cold issues from it.
COMBATSYS: Echo successfully hits Jax with Abracadaver.
- Power hit! -
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Jax 0/-------/--=====|=======\====---\1 Echo
Normally Jax would be talking shit right back. He isn't this time, though, mostly because despite his efforts, Echo managed to remain in one place from the uppercut. He's about to swing again, when his eyes dart up to the spectre that manifests. His brows furrow and his breath can be seen on the air as he's struck by the anomaly, which actually /does/ manage to send him reeling, crashing against a wall with his arm lifting to prevent him from toppling over.
Then he's moving back towards her, jogging at her before lifting his foot up to try to drive it into her knee. Should he succeed, he would throw another uppercut in an attempt to knock her into the air -- and then he'd grab her and throw his and her body both backwards onto the floor of the seedy office.
Of course, should he fail, he's leaving himself open for another attack.
COMBATSYS: Jax successfully hits Echo with Outranked.
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Jax 0/-------/-======|>>>>>>>\>>>>>>>\2 Echo
"Argh--" Echo is definitely in pain, knocking her up and back--she has to unfold her wings and flap them to avoid being flipped over by the strike, it's definitely a nasty one. "You're pretty strong, stronger than me, I think... but I'm going to put on a good show before this is over," Echo's eyes flash red and she snaps her fingers. At that moment, the floor just DROPS out beneath them--causing Echo to float down to the main room room below with the stages and dance floor.
"Charlie won't mind me appropriating his club for the main event, I don't think," spectral energy begins to wreath around the stage area and dancing poles, ghostly women now dancing around the latter--while what looks like huge glowing green pendulum blades begin to swoop down from the ceiling toward Jax!
"And now--for one night only!" Echo is hanging back as the weird phantasmic magician of this show, undead spirits circling around her.
The blades careen down--as blue ghostly fire spits up from the bottom of the stage beneath the special forces man.
COMBATSYS: Echo successfully hits Jax with #Grand Guignol#.
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Jax 1/------=/=======|-------\-------\0 Echo
Jax falls as the ground beneath the pair crumbles -- but he catches himself in a three point landing, bionic hand bracing him as he snaps his head upwards to look up at the floating woman. He rises slowly to his feet, glancing to the spectral women working the poles, then to the glowing green pendulum blades swoop down. "Shit, shit, shit," Jax continues the tradition of this fight, dodging one pendulum, than another -- right before one catches him in a bionic bicep, carrying him into a gout of the blue flame.
Hissing in pain, Jax struggles back up to his feet, looking from pendulum to pendulum, licking his lips briefly. Then he rushes towards a wall, leaping at it and kicking off it to launch himself through the air, one bionic fist aimed right towards Echo's face.
COMBATSYS: Echo blocks Jax's High Punch.
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Jax 1/------=/=======|>------\-------\0 Echo
"Oof, well, you are a good dance partner for this kind of thing, Jaxy boy--are you sure you don't want to tag out? I won't try to stop you if you do--" Echo inclines herself forward as she flutters down to the now rubble strewn floor as the magic fades, the blades disappearing but the ghost dancers remain. Because y'know, it's good to have stuff going on in the background.
That is until she's punched in the face. The fur and skin of her cheek mold around it briefly as her neck and head is bent in the direction of the punch--sending her careening back. Ow.
Flapping her wings, Echo brings herself up into the air, her dress fluttering and blood streaked around her cheeks. "So you /do/ know how to treat a lady," she grins--before swooping down on him--claws and fangs bared!
COMBATSYS: Jax blocks Echo's Glider Spike.
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Jax 1/-----==/=======|==-----\-------\0 Echo
"What can I say?" That's all Jax can say, though. He lifts his arm up to shield himself -- her claws spark against it, and then without another word his bionic arm comes up. It's a crap-shoot, the Major knows this, but maybe... just maybe he can get ahold of her.
COMBATSYS: Echo interrupts Gotcha from Jax with Wing Charge.
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Jax 1/--=====/=======|======-\-------\0 Echo
As Jax reaches up to grab the bat lady out of the air--he winds up snatching one of her arms instead of her wing as she comes in--actually swinging her wing down against his head and shoulders to try and break his hold--both kombatants(?) winding up clocking eachother as they go tumbling--with Echo winding up on the floor, pulling herself up with not a great look on her face. She's hurt, bad.
She's hurt bad, but Jax? He's doing worse. He was banking on snatching her out of the air, and now he's face-first on the ground after having tumbled across the debris-strewn club. He slowly gets to his knees, lifting a bionic hand to press against his head where her wing hit, letting the cold metal do some of the soothing. Then he rises up to his feet in a stagger, stumbling to the side before his eyes lift up and fix on Echo.
Blinking the dizziness out of his eyes, he then begins to advance on her, first in a walk, then in a jog. He leaps into the air, trying to bring a bionic elbow onto where-ever he could hit her. Regardless, if it strikes, his hands would go for her hips to pluck her off the ground and flip her upside down -- just to slam her headfirst towards the ground.
For the Major, that was a really big if.
COMBATSYS: Jax successfully hits Echo with Air Raid.
[ \\\\\ < > // ]
Jax 0/-------/------=|=======\==-----\1 Echo
Echo takes the bionic elbow to the face, knocking her back--however when the metallic hands go around her hips she blinks and looks up at him, face and teeth bloodied. Probably from getting getting hit in the face so much--teeth mashing against the inside of her mouth, etc.
"Here we go--are you ready!" Echo howls through blood and saliva, arms going up as she's piledriven--a great rush of shadows coming down on the both of them--it's like a great rush of cold, black energy!
COMBATSYS: Echo can no longer fight.
[ \\\\\ <
COMBATSYS: Jax guards against Echo's Still Falls The Night EX.
[ \\\ <
Jax's arms release her right before he can slam her in the ground -- gravity does the rest of the work. He throws those biotic arms up and lets out an angry howl of pain as the shadows sweep over him, dropping him to one knee as he squeezes his eyes shut and clenches his jaw tightly to tough through the pain. When the shadows are gone, his arms drop and he catches himself before he collapses, his breathing ragged.
"Damn, that bitch was tough," he says under his breath, struggling to get to his feet to look up through the hole in the ceiling. "Charlie! Get your ass down here!"
Charlie doesn't answer, because he's too busy stealing Jax's muscle car. Jax hears the engine outside and turns to look in that direction, his own blood trickling from his hairline down to his eye as he watches his fully restored old-school muscle car get driven away by an escaping scumbag. "You gotta be kidding me." He runs off after the car -- leaving Echo time to recover and slip away.
"Mnnn..." Echo pulled herself up from the rubble as Jax went to deal with Charlie, making off in his car. While amusing, Echo was in no mood--she tried to stand up and realize one of her shoes was broken--the heel sheered off in the fighting. She pulled the remnants of said shoes off with a huff and staggered barefoot out of the remains of the club--through the back door, the dust motes raining down from the busted ceiling danced and whirled as the doors opened and closed. Yet there was no sign of the weird ghostly phenomenon there now--as if it had never been. The whole place was silent as the grave.
Log created on 19:20:02 04/14/2020 by Echo, and last modified on 18:19:01 04/16/2020.