2009-03-15: Cardiac Attack


FreedomRing_icon.jpg BlackWidow_icon.jpg WinterSoldier_icon.jpg

Summary: Heroes stop an attack from the Otherworlders.

Date: March 15, 2009

Log Title Cardiac Attack

Rating: PG 13

NYC - Statue of Liberty

Lady Liberty, a sign of freedom, the number one tourist spot in New York City. With her seven pointed crown and glowing torch, she stands on Liberty Island at the base of the Hudson River as a beacon welcoming Immigrants, Visitors, and people coming home to America. People can take a ferry out to climb up to the top and get a magnificent view of lower Manhattan and Northern New Jersey.

The island's just reopened to the public and many have flocked to see the Statue of Liberty this chilly Saturday afternoon. Tourists, people looking for inspiration in this time of invasion, and others that are just bored. They're all here. One of these young men is Curtis Doyle, just out with his lover…one Aubrey Thompson, secretly Z'reg the skrull. They're just enjoying the day while on a 'stealth patrol'.

The sound of an explosion and several people screaming draws attention away from the giant green woman though. On the coast of the island, stepping off a pile of smoking rubble is a man in blue and silver armor. He's carrying a large staff and energy crackles around his hands. "OUTTA THE WAY!" he yells to the crowd, throwing a blast of energy at the ground to send people scattering. And scatter they do. Some panic and run for the ferry, others just run while dialing for whatever emergency services they can reach. A few even jump right into the water. Looks like trouble out here!

"It will do you some good to get out and stretch your feet. I am not sure I want to know exactly what you have been doing with yourself the past couple of days, but I am just as sure that if you continue non stop you will get yourself killed." That said, Natasha leads James Barnes up the steps on the island, leading to the feet of the Statue of Liberty. She opens her mouth to speak again, interrupted by the sound of explosions and people's screams. A Russian swear passes her lips as she pushes James behind a nearby post with her, slapping her Widow's Bites onto her wrists, beginning to unfasten her shirt to reveal the black leather beneath. With an invasion going on, you can't be too prepared.

Watching the Statue of Liberty was never anything interesting to James as the Winter Soldier; it was only another aging, cheap French gift. Something that choked New York even further with tourists. Apparently there were more patriotic drives within him once before and, now that his history has been revealed to him, he can't help but feel guilty that he still doesn't care. With the chaos of the dimensional rift creating such turmoil within the city screaming and panic haven't been unusual; the proximity of this just happens to be inconvenient.

“I don't know why you think, after somewhere around sixty years of killing things, /now/ I'm suddenly in danger. He mutters under his breath. He reaches under his brown, leather jacket as his dark eyes slip down from their study of the distant monument and drift almost lazily towards the armored man liberally peppering the citizens with energy. He reaches under his jacket to make sure he isn't on 'safe.' Asshole had to ruin his sightseeing. Something close to a boyish grin shoots aside to Natasha as he begins to walk towards the disturbance.

"Stand aside and maybe I won't finish you all off too!" the man in the armor continues to yell at the crowds, making a path for himself towards the Statue. He knocks aside the police that rush at him with relative ease, the men convulsing as if tazed after landing. After getting a nice distance from his impact spot, the man in armor lifts his staff and takes aim at the Statue's base. The tip glows before a massive blast of energy gets unleashed. Just as it's about to strike the statue, a shimmering barrier of energy stops it. The Black Widow might recognize the young man in pink and black that seems to be holding up that barrier. It's Freedom Ring, the same kid that helped the Avengers defeat the Iron Maniac not so long ago. Wasn't he dead though? Who knows. Those paying attention might also notice another young man in costume has suddenly appeared down by the ferry and is helping to settle the panic.

"What?" the man in the armor seems surprised. Before he can say much else, he notices that someone seems to be walking towards the area instead of running away. Glancing over, glowing eyes narrow and the man lifts a small device up. "I may need some assistance," he transmits into his communicator before leveling his staff towards the approaching Barnes.

"Because now you're fighting for something entirely new to you. And you're fighting the people who taught you to be what you are. I can tell you from experience that it's not the easiest thing to manage. This guy however…" As he shoots her that boyish grin, Natasha can't help but return it with an excited one of her own. They haven't fought together in how long? Nearly 50 years, atleast. But some things just come back easy. As the staff takes aim at Winter Soldier, Natasha uses the post for cover, turning to take aim at the arm holding it, letting of one shot, then another three in quick succession.

Ducking back behind cover, Natasha notices the shield with an approving nod. Dead or not, he'd helping and that's all that matters at the moment. "You can block the beam, can you reflect it?" she calls to him.

Studying the man's armor it's difficult for James to discern a standard weakness, so he'll have to start with the usuals. As he begins descending a flight of stairs, his pistol snaps up with little warning and opens fire on the man's kneecaps. "Coordinate an attack with that man." He remarks calmly, ready to tumble aside at th first sign of sparking he sees.

The guard on the man in armor's knees serves to deflect the bullets but his arm isn't so lucky. While the bullets fail to pierce the suit, they still sting even for the sturdy enemy. He growls in pain, his energy blast going high instead of aimed at Barnes. "One chance! Leave or die!" he yells to the two with the guns.

Freedom Ring meanwhile lets out a breath as the barrier goes down. He jumps when Natasha calls to him and looks over. "Uhh…" he's not sure. "I can try!" he concludes. And then rather suddenly there's a flash of light on the post Natasha's hiding behind. Standing atop it is a woman in red. One that'd be easily recognizable as a rather tattered version of the Crimson Cowl. Glowing pink eyes peer down at the Black Widow but the woman and her cloak make no moves to join into the fight going on.

"Don't try, just do. If you can bend the field, just do your best to aim it back at him." Black Widow gives Freedom a firm nod. He can do it. She hopes. "If not, just keep shielding as much as you can." Protecting the idiots who stopped to gawk, and the people who run far too slow. Crimon Cowl gets a quick glare, taking into account the tattered appearance. Something tells her the woman or possible Ultron is not on their side. But with no move made yet, she let's her be, dodging forward using whatever cover she can find to get closer to the fight. Another gun slides from the woman's hip, set to full auto as he aims for the same spot as Winter Soldier.

Oh. Good for him, the armor seems to be largely effective. Barnes finishes the rest of his clip aiming directly at Cardiac's face, breaking into a light jog as soon as the clip is unloaded. Then a run. Then a dead sprint. By the time he's ready to close the gap he's slapped a new clip in and snapped the weapon ready. "I don't think I like what you're about to do to that statue, Fella."

The man in the armor swaps his staff to the other hand and starts to spin it rapidly, focused on defense against the incoming bullets. His armor can only take so much punishment after all. Thankfully, spinning his staff so quickly generates an electrical field to help stop the bullets. "The statue's in the way! It's comin' down and you're going with it!" Cardiac calls back to Barnes, stopping his defense and swinging the staff at the man. Judging by all the electricity, avoiding it would be a good idea.

"Easy for her to say," Freedom Ring mutters to himself. He concentrates for several long moments before getting an idea. Suddenly a glowing blue shield blinks into existance on his arm. "This should do the job of reflecting it! Catch!" he calls out, flinging the shield Natasha's way like a certain other sheild-slinger might but with far less skill.

The Crimson Cowl waits, unmoving and watching the fight. "Stop playing, Cardiac. We have work to do," she finally speaks.

"Careful Winter Soldier, you're 'goin' down with it'," Natasha calls with an amused smirk. As a clip empties into the swirling defense of the electric field, Natasha simply discards the gun and primes one of her gauntlets. Crouching for the best shot, aiming to detach man from staff, a solid blast of energy pulses from her wrist. Enough to cut through a car door without trouble. Once the shot is clicked off, Natasha spins towards the 'catch', arm lifting to pluck the shield from the air, moving with it's trajectory and speed to charge straight towards Cardiac, letting the shield take the brunt of any electric discharge.

Hmph. James grunts dryly to Natasha's taunting continuing to sprint towards the staff-wielding psycopath to the last possible second then tumbling aside, whipping his pistol around and unleashing a quick burst of shots into the side of Cardiac's knee then kicking back to his feet to throw a cybernetic hook towards the side of the man's face. He likes making bones move the wrong direction. "Neutralize his backup!"

The staff smashes into the ground, sending electrical discharge and debris into the air as Winter Soldier avoids the deadly strike. Cardiac lets out an angry yell, energy blast from Black Widow striking his hand and managing to cut right through the armor to hit flesh below. The staff clatters to the ground and snaps down to a smaller size. The shots from Winter Soldier send Cardiac wobbling and then the punch hits with a crunch. The large man tumbles back right into the charging Window. The resulting reaction of massive electrical discharge meeting a product of reality alteration isn't a nice one. Black Widow's protected from it because she's holding the shield but electricity arcs off cardiac dangerously, tearing up pavement and colliding with the barriers Freedom Ring maintains to protect those civilians foolish enough to remain. After a few moments of this, Cardiac collapses to the ground with a dull groan.

Crimson Cowl's eyes narrow up on her perch. "Useless," she mutters.

Safe as she may be behind the shield, Natasha ducks low to try and cover as much of her as she can for protection. Black Widow chooses safety over balance, letting herself drop to a knee and then fall back as the pavement around her begins to rip up and crumble with the shock wave of energy. Once the pavement starts to settle, Natasha digs her fingers in the rubble grabbing a small chunk as she pushes back up to her feet. Though it looks like she's adjusting, she turns and whips the chunk towards Crimson Cowl.

Ever the elusive target, James flicks his hand across the ground and deftly flips aside of the arcing sparks of energy, lowering himself to a crouch to prevent concussive shock waves from sending him tumbling over. He watches the arcing bolts of energy with a healthy wariness, immediately rising to his feet and leveling his pistol towards the Crimson Cowl to use Natasha's sneak attack to unload a pair of shots towards the woman's shoulders. "Make sure that kid keeps his attention on protecting those idiots." He says, dropping the empty clip and slapping another one in. "Who's the woman?"

Crimson Cowl's eyes go wide at the sneak attack and the cloak around her snaps up to slap the debris chunk away. It then wraps around her protectively, bullets ricocheting right off the incredible material. When she unfurls from its protective folds, the Crimson Cowl's holding some rather high-tech pistols. Taking aim, one gun lets loose a barrage of energy beams against the barrier Freedom Ring keeps up and the other towards Black Widow and Winter Soldier.

Natasha watches the cape snap the debris away without much surprise. "Crimson Cowl," she calls to Winter Soldier before she spots the guns and takes off towards the group of people being helped by Freedom Rings. She slams her shield in the way, trying to take the brunt of atleast some of the energy beams. Natasha plants her feet, keeping one arm steady with the shield, the other unclipping a small disk from her belt, sending it spinning to the pole where it settles with a silent clack. It simply rattles against the pole and goes still. 5.. 4.. 3..

"Covering fire, Widow." James says, tumbling aside to use a chunk of debris as cover as the woman throws her explosive and waiting for a lull in fire to assist. He leans out from around the barrier and fires a triad of shots; two of which tear through the air towards the woman's pistols. The third decides five seconds is five too many and blasts straight into the mine, setting it off prematurely.

Oblivious to the disc, Crimson Cowl continues to fire her weapons. She keeps it up right until Winter Soldier's shots disarm her. Cursing in Latverian, she starts to respond but gets no time.


The explosion is accompanied by a bright flash of red light. It's enough to distract Freedom Ring enough that his barriers and the shield he threw to Black Widow fade away as he shields his eyes. When the light clears, Crimson Cowl and the fallen Cardiac are gone. Only the destruction after the battle remains.

Natasha blinks as her shield disappears, glancing over a shoulder to check on Freedom and make sure he's still standing. As soon as she realizes he and the civilians are alright, just startled, she glances back towards the fight, already in a ready stance. Green eyes scan the area for the enemy, but as soon as she realizes the body of Cardiac is missing, she straightens. "Excellent work Freedom Rings, can you please finish escorting these people to safety while we check to assure they're gone."

Freedom Rings gets a stoic nod; more than most have gotten from James in some time, and he holsters his pistol to advance and ensure the young man is uninjured. "The armored guy didn't kill you. Well done." He says, inspecting him from a respectful distance and glancing back to Natasha. "Do either of you know what that was about?"

"Man, next time I gotta create some sunglasses," Freedom Ring complains, blinking away the spots he got from the flash of light. He's uninjured, just looks like he's sweating a little from maintaining those barriers and the shield for as long as he did under that much assault. Crusader will be upping the training programs. The teen with the glowing blue eyes blinks a few times then smiles. "Yeah, thanks. I'm pretty good at not getting killed by armored guys," he remarks. He takes a moment to look Winter Soldier over before nodding towards Black Widow. "Sure thing," he replies. "Alright, folks! Show's over! Lets get you all off the island and to some safety!" Freedom Ring joins that other costumed teen in rounding up the civilians towards the docks. Some of those civilians have started clapping and cheering for the show they just got but it doesn't look like Crimson Cowl or Cardiac are anywhere in sight.

"From the looks of it, some of the otherworlders thought they'd try and take the Statue of Liberty down. I'm not entirely sure as the reasoning behind it. Maybe to put up their own? Shatter morale? It could be any number of reasons. But without someone to pry the answers from I'm afraid it's mere guessing." Natasha sighs as she studies the damage, nudging a piece of rubble with the toe of her shoe. "I think they're gone for the moment. But we need to stick around or a moment to wait for the authorities to block the area off."

A jaded gaze follows Freedom Rings and his costumed companion walk away to try and enforce a semblance of order. "Kids shouldn't have to do this that young…" James murmurs under his breath, glancing aside to Natasha and giving his head a shake. "Tell me why we're not using lethal force here. They are launching assaults on American soil. It's an invasion and they are declaring war with these actions."

As Freedom Ring rejoins Crusader, keen ears might pick up a few comments on Winter Soldier's looks but nothing to much as the teens get right back to work. Police boats and helicopters can be heard and then seen approaching the island now. Amazing timing there.

"No. They shouldn't." Natasha sends him a meaningful look before another sigh passes disapproving lips. "But try telling them that. The more you tell him," she stops and gives him a quirked smile "I mean, them, of course. The more you tell them not to fight, the more they're going to want to." Green eyes turn toward the boats and copters as she hears their approach, stepping forward with an air of authority to guide them in safely amongst the rubble. "It isn't our call to make, James." It's clear from her tone she doesn't disagree.

"Citizens have the right to bear arms. To protect their country from a foreign threat. From /invasion./" James almost snarls, turning towards the approaching authorities then back to Natasha. "We need to move. Now." He says, calming himself and turning to run towards the nearby dock to 'commandeer' a boat. "Maybe you should tell your friends to read the Bill of Rights sometime."

"Soldier, stand down. They'll give us a ride to shore once everything here is settled. I need to speak to the man in charge first and then we'll go." Natasha holds a finger up to gesture for the officer in charge to wait a moment before moving to James' side. "You need to relax," she insists, resting her hand over his arm. "Just wait here a moment while I handle this." She heads back up to give a brief statement to the police before letting them know that they'll be using a boat in order to get back to shore and they'll leave it in the safety of another officer when they reach the other side.

It doesn't feel right. Especially after he just tried to murder Spider-Woman and Natasha, but if there's anyone he can have some faith in James will have to find it in Natasha. "Fine." He says, narrowing his eyes warily as he stops and returns to Natasha. "I'm just a concerned citizen with a permit to carry. Remember."

The police are slightly surprised, used to 'capes' rushing off quicker during the invasion but they take the statement. A few of the men watch Natasha for longer than they should but she's allowed to take the boat whenever she needs it.

Meanwhile, Freedom Ring walks back over, having sent Crusader on ahead with the ferry. "Hey," he calls as he approaches Winter Soldier. "Everything good over here?" he asks, wondering if he'll be needed.

Natasha isn't just a cape, she's an Avenger and a S.H.I.E.L.D agent, making sure all the I's are dotted and T's are crossed is something that's been ingrained in her. Once everything is settled and they've agreed, she moves back towards the boat, pressing a couple fingers against Winter Soldier's back. "We're ready," she says, giving Freedom Ring a quick nod before moving towards the boat and preparing to head out.

"I would leave unless you want to get caught up in paperwork and statements." James suggests to Freedom Rings, reaching forward to Zip his coat up and slowly run a hand through his hair. "…I know that's what I'm about to do." He says, trading a few dry glances with a police officer in earshot before turning to head to the boat. Forget these rules of engagement. The next villains won't be so lucky.

Freedom Ring shrugs and nods. "Alright. See ya," he offers with a wave as he watches the older pair leave. He lingers for a moment before hopping into the air and flying back to the mainland.

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