2010-04-05: Veronica Y Banderilla De Dedos Para Skrull


Magneto_icon.jpg Misha_icon.jpg Teddy_icon.jpg

Summary: One day three Skrulls tried to capture and replace Magneto. This is what went wrong with that plan.

Date: April 5, 2010

Veronica Y Banderilla De Dedos Para Skrull

Rating: R (gore)

New York City — Somewhere in Manhattan

A busy street in Manhattan

The streetlights are coming on and the evening traffic is heating up. People have finished their day jobs and are now out looking for rest, relaxation, and amusement — in whatever way they define those things, and whichever way they can get it. The nightclubs haven't quite opened yet, but the restaurants and coffee bars around them are doing brisk business; it won't be long. Lines are forming for movies, and the theatres have opened their doors.
None of which interests the Mutant Master of Magnetism. Erik Magnus Lensherr, aka Magneto, is in civilian clothes tonight, and he is heading for the Hellfire Club for a little face-to-face business with various club members. He could have taken a taxi, but seriously? No. He's walking, because it's good exercise and because if anyone is stupid enough to try mugging him, they'll deserve what they get.

Of course, this means he does get mugged. But since the muggers are a band of opportunistic super-Skrulls, the outcome is not as foregone as might be expected. They know their target, they know what they want from him, and they know that hitting him as hard as possible before he realizes they're even there is their best hope.

KROOOO-OOOOM!!! The pavement ripples and bucks, throwing everyone on it — human and mutant, both — into the air. The humans scream. The mutant tries to magnetically levitate. Unfortunately, advances Skrull technology intervenes; an anti-magnetism device sucks up and distorts the fields in the vicinity. Magneto crashes back to the pavement, badly. He's not used to not being able to save himself…

While it's sheer chance that he was near at hand, Mikhail (Misha) is coming out of a small shop tucked between a movie theatre and a video store when that kroo-oom hits. A moderately safer distance however. Like everyone else he goes flying, but unlike everyone else he instinctively shifts. Doubt anyone notices one human disappearing amid the chaos. This doesn't mean he has it easy. Misha goes tumbling, rolling to a stop to spend a moment stunned. Sure going to feel that one in the morning.
He doesn't let himself sit too long though. In spite of the aches, and the blood he's tasting, the teen scrambles to his feet. Can't see in here! The buildings in the real world still block his view, so he rushes through them to get a handle on what's going on out there.

One of those humans thrown around (and screaming, which is totally embarrassing) is Teddy Altman, college student, who was just on his way to pick up an equinox gift for his roomie … and boyfriend … Billy. So Billy isn't told where he's at or what he's doing this time. Sneaky Teddy is Subtle. And where do you go to find an appropriate gift for equinox for a jewish boy named Wiccan? Well, there's a place for that in NYC. Unfortunately, there's also some skrull super-mischief happening, and until he can tell what's happening Teddy is just being … himself.

Mischief-making super-Skrulls, actually. Two of whom are pouncing on the downed and dazed Magneto, hands morphed into claws and legs morphed for fast running. "Mine!" "Me first!" they snarl, getting in each others' way as they rush forward. A third Skrull hangs back, minding the anti-magnetics device and watching what looks like a green iPad. "No superhumans detected," he snaps at the two. "Yet. So hurry!"

Misha is fairly disturbed at what he sees. Which means he only slows as the street becomes visible. Not knowing who Magneto is, the teen only sees a man being beset by two Skulls. That means trouble. Scrambling over the broken street, for the ground in the space follows the real world from the time he transfers, the teen jumps the last few feet to land more or less right beside one of the Skrulls.

He pulls the gun from the small of his back, chambers a round, releases the safety, and takes aim as he shifts back. No, he doesn't expect this to hurt, but he fires a round at a Skrull's leg even as he grabs for Magneto's ankle with his other hand. Here's to hoping Mag's doesn't flail, for the teen isn't risking getting smacked by staying more than the second he needs. And yes, if he can grab that ankle, he shifts them both to a safer place.

Teddy stands up straight, and squares his shoulders. This has the potential for profoundly sucking. He ponders the need, perhaps, for an emergency call of some sort to let his teammates know he needs them.

"Just what," he calls out in an authoritative voice, "Do you three think you are doing? Did some fool think to post a bounty on elderly humans? Did you forget that we have a truce with the Terrans, perhaps?"

Misha is right; that bullet doesn't do much to the Skrull. He is a super-Skrull, after all. However, it does surprise the stink off him, and he falls over, entangling the other Skrull, who roars in outrage. The latter reaches, stretches… and puts his claws into one of Magneto's arms. Blood happens.
Magneto howls and thrashes. However, he thrashes toward Misha. Misha was going for his ankle; he gets Magneto's whole lower leg. Might be a trifle sudden, though…

The third Skrull's head snaps around at the sound of Teddy's voice, and his eyes narrow when he realizes who the young man is. "The mongrel!" he hisses, and he abandons the equipment to morph into something big and scaly and toothy and with lots of claws — and wings, the better to avoid the thrashing mess of the other two in the middle of the street. He springs for Teddy, pointy bits first.

Blood happens, and then the Skrull has nothing at all in hand. Misha can choose what he takes with and what he doesn't.. and Magneto is what he picks. Arm wrapped around the elder man's leg, gun in his right hand (Pointedly safely away), the teen holds there to give Magneto a moment to orient. The effects of the Skrull's device is entirely gone here, but that wouldn't mean Magnus feels totally to rights. Beyond the injuries there is no magnetic field in this dimensional space. "Hold still." A harsh voice with a heavy Polish accent. "I am letting go and you go back." This isn't a threat. Clear green eyes are fixed on Magneto. This teen shows no hesitation or fear. He's hearing Teddy too, but ignores it for now.

"Fool!" Teddy snarls, and shapeshifts himself… into the perfect image of Kl'rt, the ORIGINAL Super-Skrull. He's practiced this any number of times: As the pointy bits approach, his arms become the rocky orange of the Thing, and a 75 ton punch goes straight to the center-of-mass of the rude fellow. He doesn't bother with the other Fantastic-Four powers that Kl'rt possesses… Mostly because, he's not sure how they DO that.
"Idiots. The Emperor is even now on tour in the Kree worlds, as you should know. I am here to protect his human identity. Now stand down and explain yourselves!"

Magneto freezes for a moment, as his brain catches up with his reality… which is seriously off-kilter. The magnetism… where did it go? He twists to glare at Misha, ignoring his bleeding arm for the moment. "Who are you?" he demands, in Polish. It isn't good modern Polish, but it is recognizable as that language… if a bit antiquated, and perhaps more than a little provincial. "If you mean to attack me, know that Magneto has put down bigger pups than you!"

That center-of-body punch hits and the Skrull goes looping backward, wailing. The problem with leaping on people, even with the help of wings, is that last-moment evasive maneuvers generally aren't good enough. He'll be a few moments recovering from that…
Meanwhile, however, the other two have untangled themselves. "It IS the mongrel!" one exclaims, and the other laughs, and tells Teddy, "Touring the Kree worlds, are you, your Mightiness? We think not! We know not! And glory will be ours to remove your rot from the pure body of the Skrull Empire!"
Both Skrulls morph into rhino-like creatures, with spikes, and they charge Teddy like a pair of knife-laden steamrollers.
Most New Yorkers know to bugger off when in the vicinity of metahuman activity. What few are left — most of them injured, or otherwise unable to leave — scream in terror. Some of those screaming are in the path of the Skrulls…

That so very calm look shifts to an expression ire right back at the master of magnetism. The Polish is a surprise, but a good one. "I'm trying to save you. Stop being an ass." Misha keeps an arm around the man's leg, but he tucks the gun into the holster at the small of his back. "My name is Mikhail Androv. I'm not anybody, so you won't have heard of me." Hopefully the old Polish is enough to understand the new. "The problem here comes in that if I let you go you'll be in the middle of their fight. So let's try and get you out of this?" The choice is up to Magnus of course. "Teddy's going to need some help too." Doesn't even glance back though.

And that leaves Teddy with really no option but to go Hulkling on them. Although he's pretty sure that they don't "know not"… Kl'rt was pretty confident that the idea would work, wasn't he? Well… maybe.
The Hulkling Leap (with extra wing guidance) takes him between the two charging jerks and the humans. So, which kind of super-Skrull are these going to be, the easier kind who are just as good at shapeshifting as Teddy, or the ones who can duplicate the super-powers of meta-humans, and probably of other races?
And of course, Teddy hasn't had time to learn certain tricks… so no box-jelly venom to knock them down, he'll just have to rely on strength, speed, and good looks. Or … y'know.

Magneto hisses at Misha. "If you are trying to save me, have the sense to grab hold of something other than my leg!" Because his current position is both awkward and humiliating, and Magneto reacts badly to both conditions. "As for them…" A flick of his hand, contempt evident. "Give me a moment to catch my breath, and they will no longer be a problem. To anyone."

The two Skrulls charging new, improved Teddy are the kind of super-Skrulls who can duplicate superpowers. Obviously; why else attack someone like Magneto? Of course, Teddy likely doesn't know that's who the old guy was, so he's probably surprised when the one Skrull rears up and suddenly, metal objects around Teddy come rushing in toward him. Nothing fancy; they're just trying to crush him to death. The other Skrull tucks in his head and tries to gore Hulkling. Two-pronged attack, you know.
And some of that flying metal will move through spaces occupied by mushy little human normals. Not that the Skrulls care, of course. More screaming! … And way more blood.

"You're worried about your ego during a time like this?" The teen asks with a bark of a laugh. Does offer his hand though. "I'm neither super strong, nor invulnerable so I can't take risks like Teddy does. I grabbed what part of you I could. Would you rather I had left you?" And yet he is smiling as he says this. Damn funny! Doesn't stop Misha from giving Magnus the means to sit up and eventually stand if the man wants.

OK, that's intolerable. Teddy DOES know that for most super-skrulls, the powers are entirely artificial, provided by machines and devices, but that for some, like Kl'rt, it's become integrated into their bodies naturally. In this case he's hoping that he can get close enough to do something sufficiently violent to discover… flying metal everywhere. (dodge? Wait, that piece of metal just flying past was the hood ornament off an old Dodge Dart… and it's impaled someone who hopefully was already dead.)
OK, hurting the humans? That's not not to be allowed. Hulkling's not stopped moving, and the guy trying to gore? Hulkling is not STUPID and RAGE-DRIVEN like his namesake. He begins twisting around as he moves, almost a dance or martial-arts movement (not nearly refined enough to call a "kata") and letting the larger and heavier bits pile up as a barrier between himself and the charging guy, because, let's see what power THIS one has. Before ripping the magnetic device out of fake-neto's squeedly sportch by main force.

Magneto does indeed want to stand, and he does, despite the way the world spins around him when he does it. Damn it, he will NOT faint. "I do not know who or what a Teddy is," he says waspishly, because Misha has mentioned Teddy at least twice. Magneto didn't see Teddy before he went down, and he's been a little busy since then.

The charging Skrull is using superstrength, a touch of superspeed, and four-legged balance against Hulkling. Nothing too fancy, but nothing too shabby, either; he's practiced with this shape, and when Teddy dodges, he follows, a breath behind. Teddy may have to take more evasive manuevers training, because the Skrull is catching up…!

The other one is… was channelling Magneto's power, but since he's at a disadvantage to defend himself when using the strange power, Teddy gets the device before he can prevent it. "Yeeearrrgh!" he says, which makes everyone in the area wince. All the metal bits come raining down. Bonk! Thonk! Thud!

Not terribly concerned with Magneto's ego at the moment, the boy tries to slip an arm around the man. "We must get your arm tended to." Misha insists, for Mags is looking quite pale there. "Teddy is someone I know. He's fighting those Skrulls who were trying to kill you." And it's so very nice not to have to be mangling English at the moment. "Will you let get you somewhere safer and look at your arm?" Maybe asking will help. Old people and their need for politeness.

Hulkling makes sure his canines are EXTRA-sharp when he grins and sticks a VERY sharp hand into the chest cavity of that super-skrull (finding the part that doesn't get out of the way) and twists and yanks. It won't kill him. Much. He'll grow back. Eventually.
"That must hurt, I hope. In fact, I insist, you Fatherless son of a rotten egg." He did learn a few translated Skrull insults, yes.

Uh-oh, that other guy is still followOOF. Hulkling is knocked back and away, with a hole in one leg which he quickly shifts back to "undamaged" but damn that's gonna hurt for an hour or two. And he keeps his grip tight on that piece of skrull-tech.

"What in a devil's midden are the bloody Skrulls doing trying to kill me?" Cranky and peevish. Magneto has a headache, and being babied by some fresh-faced young puppy who clearly doesn't know who he is. "They should be off-planet, and damn if I won't throw them there when I catch them!" But one more moment of catching his breath. "This place… what? Where? I cannot feel anything." Where are the magnetic lines?

One Skrull down, in pain. He won't get up any time soon. However, the first Skrull has recovered from the punch, so when the second Skrull slams into Teddy, the first one can attack, too. Piledriver punch, a la the Thing!

How could he know Magneto? In the remains of a nice suit? Just a white haired guy. Right? Well, the white hair is weird, but Misha isn't trying to make assumptions. "I have no idea. I was caught in the shock wave of the first attack with everyone else." He does have some blood on his face, and will be several colors by tomorrow. And in spite of that he's trying to pull Magneto away from the fighting. This way.. through a wall. And yes, Magneto can still see everything that is going on, but it's kind of fuzzy. A pale, washed out version. "My power is dimensional teleportation. We're in a pocket space. Still in New York. Still where the Skrulls are fighting, but they can neither see, nor hear, us. Sir, you're bleeding pretty badly. If I don't stop that you're going to pass out. Nor can I tend to you where the Skrulls and Teddy are fighting.." Never mind his time limit is ticking.

Time limit? OOF. Thing-piledriver. And he had JUST started to wipe the thing off… eww, and was going to shapeshift a spot in his throat for safe-keeping (from the outside of course) but the attack … Hulkling SWALLOWS the magnetic device, then makes a face at the taste of the thing. Hopefully it's not going to be digested or damaged, but YRCH.
As for raw super-strength, he's probably a match for these guys one-on-one, and he's a wrestler but has not yet had time to learn that new martial art, the super-strength fighting technique some wag's called "Thing-Fu", and that means … if they're new to their strength he's OK, if not, then he's dooooomed. Having been pile-drivered, he's on his knees. His hands are at gut-punch level, so he tries that again on the guy close by.

"A pocket dimension? That could be very useful." Magneto is getting his bearings. He still feels very odd; there's no magnetism here. It's rather like having cotton wool stuck in an extra pair of ears and over an extra pair of eyes, none of which anyone else can see. "Take me to a place where we can see what is happening, and then bring me out of the pocket dimension. I will deal with things from there." Authority, thy name is Magneto.

Teddy isn't lucky today; both Skrulls are used to using their super-strength. The first one pulls back for another strike and the second one slams forward again, still doing his spiky steamroller thing. Neither is giving Teddy any respite, and both are looking for return attacks; that's why number one pulled back. Out of easy arm reach — even easy Skrull arm reach.

Okay, this guy either had something knocked loose when he was pounced, or he's simply crazy. Misha doesn't answer about his power being useful. No, he already knows that. "Fine. Turn around." ANd with that the young man drops Magneto back into the real world. There's barely a tingle as it happens too, but the magnetics reappear, as do the sounds and effects of the fight. Magneto is in the remains of a building not too far away.
Leaving the elder man there, the teen moves back to the main fight to try and find Teddy. There's something he can do that he's been hoping to avoid showing, but he's not about to let Teddy fight this entirely alone. Spent too long hauling the old man around as it was.

Stopping a short distance away from where the three are, Teddy and two Skrulls, Misha concentrates. As he appears he motions with both arms, and this time there's a distortion around his hands, and then lashing out beyond it. The cutting whips. Sure they can't cut the special metals like Adamantium, but they can cut just about anything that isn't super dense. (Hey, Skrull armor may apply, he just doesn't know.) Aiming at one Skrull, he gets some swipes in before disappearing again.

Hulkling doesn't notice whips, as he's busy dealing with chains. A twelve foot long iron chain of half-inch-diameter-links that were part of the migratory metal earlier. He was knocked back into a pile of the stuff, and flips back, swings it into the air, and begins whipping it at high speed. Even superspeed won't keep them from getting at least tapped by this. He hopes. WHIZWHWHOOSH WHIIZWHOOOSH VOOP VOOP VOOOP VOOOP…

Misha's whips strike the charging Skrull several times before the creature quite realizes that it's under attack. Greenish blood spatters in the backlash as Misha draws the whips back and lashes them again, and the Skrull slows and howls, and turns toward Misha… and collects a chain to the back of his head. This staggers the creature and it falls to its knees. The other Skrull is hissing at Teddy and making little darting motions, trying to move in under the whirling chain and attack. When the chain strikes the other Skrull, the whirling stops, for just that long… and that's when the Skrull strikes. Spike hands and fangs!
Magneto staggers when the magnetism rushes back, a tidal wave of power that floods through him, welcome as nothing else is. He spreads his hands and sparkles of static dance along the broken edges of brick and drywall…

Letting the whip effect fade, Misha is glad he proved distraction for Teddy, but he's also curious where that third Skrull is. There were three when he teleported Magneto, and now there are obviously two. Opting not to attack again quite so soon, not when it's expected, the teen instead does a head count. (Doesn't expect his attack to do more than slow the Skrull down either, but it was satisfying to watch just the same.)

Fangs and spike hands, that's so last week. In fact, Hulkling used them just last week! And his were sharper. Well, for this kind of brawl what you really need is a red cloak for the bull, which… thank you SHIELD for giving us unstable-molecule clothing that we can synch to our own shapeshifting, BIG RED CAPE AND VERONICA PASS … the thing being a matter of timing, of misdirection with the cape, and of course, if it DOES catch the cape, you stab it in the back. And Hulkling has spikey fingers and just for fun grows an extra pair of arms with extra spikey fingers like Stitch, only larger and greener, to punch and stab if the thing gives an opening. He doesn't do the antenna. He does say "Tuuki bawaba!" as his cape flourishes.

There are, indeed, three Skrulls. One is a spiky rhino, who is looking for a now-disappeared Misha; one is a spike-handed… thing, which is playing bull to Teddy's bullfighter. And one is playing bloody rug, half-buried in rubble, and bubbling. One does think that Skrulls shouldn't bubble from that many holes…

Speaking of bullfighting, the Skrull falls for Teddy's bait and switch veronica with the cape, and he charges empty space, giving Teddy a grand shot for a spine stab. Green blood!

And… the metal bits are vibrating, shivering, lifting off the ground. Static electricity dances along the edges of torn metal and off the ends of struts, between bolts…

The bubbling Skrull is left for the moment then. Mikhail leaves Teddy the bull and focuses in on the rhino. The teen is sure he can't take a Skrull down, but maybe he can distrac… huh? Even while safe, Misha side steps a lifting piece of metal on instinct. It, and all the rest, suddenly have his whole attention. Uh, okay, he's going to stay right here for now and see where this leads, because he's not about to get in the middle of a potential metal storm. Oh yes, this is looking to turn very, very ugly.. oh shit, Teddy!

Misha turns and then runs to where Teddy is playing matador. Yeah, going for another snatch and grab, only this time a half-breed instead of a mutant. "Teddy…" as he appears behind the teen. Mind if he steals your dance partner, Skrull?

"Hey, spooky," Hulkling says as he retracts his cloak, having felt around long enough to stir the fellow's kidney and his giblet, and not wanting to squelch that other bit lest the goon think to grow TEETH where those fingers are poking through skin. (Yes. Teeth. What, normal skrulls don't do that? Why not?)
He goes with Misha. He recognized the white-haired fellow from the start, and the toy he's (burp) carrying is proof. And it is, hopefully, going BACK to SHIELD so they can take a look. Maybe he can get some kind of useful info from it for himself, after all.

Metal storm, indeed. Everything the Skrull pulled is now in the air again, but it's all shifting now, becoming whipping cables that slash through the air to wrap around the charging rhino-Skrull. Three wraps and the Skrull realizes the game has changed, and it changes… but not as fast as the metal storm develops. In a few breaths, the Skrull is wrapped up tight, invisible in an expanding ball of metal.

Bubbling Skrull is treated the same way; it does not resist, being busy trying to survive. The third Skrull isn't much more trouble, given that Teddy just eggbeatered his insides. Magneto steps out into the playing field, then, wrapping a few last bits into the Skrulls' prison.

With his hands to Teddy's back, fingers curled into clothe so that the two aren't accidentally separated, Misha watches the display with wide, green eyes. "Is.. that being Magneto?" Who spoke Polish. Oh man, that was so cool! Never mind that this is entirely cool. The teen is impressed with the ease and display of power. Metal pieces pass through the two as the Skrulls are wrapped up. Not that any of that can be felt, but it can easily be seen. "You would have been losing ear pieces I am thinking." To Teddy, and about his having shifted them to the dimensional space.

Hulkling — until he can get back to Barnes and shift around so he can reach down his throat and get that thing out of there — answers gravely. "That indeed is being Magneto. The white hair, the look of eagles, and of course the flying metal doing impossible things is the main clue. Those poor schmoes. It would have been better for them if they'd let me kill them. I suppose one of them was going to try to replace him… they had a device."

Why yes, this is a creepy half-world you retreat into, Mikhail, but I don't think I shall tell you that just yet. Not in my outside voice. Instead I shall see if we can get out of here. "Mind if I jump us back to Barnes? How long can we stay in here?"

"Aliens, GO HOME!" Magneto raises a hand, and then pushes… and the ball containing the three Skrulls attains escape velocity. It leaves a trail of superheated ions glowing behind it… and one very angry (and rather exhausted) Mutant Master of Magnetism in its wake. He flicks his cape in irritation and takes off, quickly vanishing into the darkening sky, leaving the debris and the clean-up to lesser mortals.

"He acts like he is ninety and is not being given ice cream, but that is much cool." Already forming an opinion? Hell yes. Jump back to Barnes? "Jump? You are not meaning literal, are you?" For Misha's teleportation doesn't work on distance. Just dimension. "I will catch cab, thank you." No, this whole jumping idea doesn't sound great to him. Especially since he's picturing the Hulk kind of jump here. "Want me… Never mind." Back to the real world, not literally drop, but as Magneto takes off it means that the area is safe again. Allowing Teddy to return to the real world, Misha remains behind, but he's watching Magneto disappear into the growing night.

"Well, yeah, if we jump while in your …eef." Hulkling sighs, as the world has gone REAL around him, and shakes his head. Looking around at the mess and the fatalities, it occurs to him. The cops didn't like him before when he was a Young Avenger without formal approval. This isn't going to make things much better. There are witnesses somewhere. He can tell his side of it to the Headmaster. And he still doesn't have the equinoctial donatory trinket. Feh.
Dragon wings pop out of his back, and he gets … thinner and lighter, a green armored version of his ordinary self but with streamlining, and JUMPS… catching the air with the wings and speeding towards the bay.

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