11335/Milk Cartons: The Lion, The Beast, The Beat

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Milk Cartons: The Lion, The Beast, The Beat
Date of Scene: 14 April 2020
Location: St. Margaret's Church, Bushwick
Synopsis: The X-Men and allies come to Cloak and Dagger and learn more about the prey they hunt. Lines have been drawn. Are you prey, or are you the hunter?
Cast of Characters: Dagger, Cannonball, Cloak, Warpath, Shadowcat, Nightingale, Psylocke, Red
Tinyplot: Milk Cartons

Dagger has posed:
The news has been on fire lately with gang activity. Last night, the police showed up, headed by Detective Dick Tracy to break up a fight between a gang ran by the new up and comer CoffeeHead and The Footclan. Rumors were the dynamic duo of Cloak and Dagger was on the scene to break it, leaving behind a pile of bodies of ninja and gangsters alike quivering in fear. Some were shot to death. Others were stabbed with swords.

By now, the gangs on the street are growing restless. From the Chickenhawks to the Crips, no one is happy that these two unknowns have come upon the streets to shake things up. Those with an ear to the ground has heard that there are several hits out for the pair with a pretty hefty bounty for whoever can bring them in dead or alive.

No one though suspects the angel and demon of light and dark to be living within the confines of an old abandoned church. After last night's fight, Tandy is just wanting to relax. The /mission/ is important, but so is downtime and lately, she and Tyrone hasn't had a minute of it. Every day has been a new war to rid the streets and the city of this cancer that runs through her concrete veins.

Music can be heard as Tandy dances to the classical piece of Swan Lake. Dressed in her white leotard uniform with a sword cut out through the front, she moves gracefully with perfect balance. Each step memorized from years of hard work and thousands of hours of training. She spins, twirls, leaps and lands, looking lost in joy. For the moment, she is a young girl, and not a warrior with vengence in her blood.

Cannonball has posed:
Samuel Guthrie knows a bit about dancing and not just cause his GF is one. He heard the music while out on a jog around work, and headed to see who it was half expecting to find Alexis.

Cloak has posed:
If the young man once known as Tyrone Johnson is in there under the vast billows of baleful fabric, only the woman in white may know. There's no signs of him there at a glance, but for now he is still and calm. Like a monk in black versus orange, he sits before the alter that's aglow with the fitful flickers of burned down candles. His eyes are closed and there's the impression his hands may be folded in front of him. Prayer? Meditation? Maybe he's napping while sitting upright. Around him, the pool of shadow-striped fabric ripples slowly, rising and falling of its own accord like the sides of a breathing tiger.

Warpath has posed:
    He's been on the streets for a day or two searching leads and coming up with dead ends. The Chickenhawk gang is his prey, and after the incident at the bar/club, they have been scarce and difficult to track in an urban environment filled with many other gang types. It doesn't help that James is also a stranger in a strange land. He has no formal contacts or assets in the city of New York proper. Had this been Boston or Salem Center, those may be different stories. But here, he's just a very large 7'2" wall of a man with long hair and red skin. An outsider in a city of outsiders.

    He didn't pursue his X-Men contacts since this isn't X-related. Not officially and he's working on his own pervue as he understands that it's being directed by Sam. Whom he sent a memo to a few days back, just to offer assistance and information.

    Now, he returns to the church as instructed by Tandy. Giving her time to talk to Cloak about sharing information. And to work within the confines of respect for the fellow mutants, or mutant adjacent. James enters through the rear of the church, following a similiar path to the one he followed days before. He also follows the music to arrive by ducking through a doorway.

Shadowcat has posed:
Kitty's faith isn't Catholic. So she's got her Star of David on a chain, and...ah yes, she's striding through the church itself, destination? Music. That's Swan Lake. Kitty remembers it from her ballet lessons and she's curious why it's being played. It's,....do they worship swans here or something? See. Kitty's got her nose to the ground now and she's wanting to figure this out.

No phasing, just good honest peeking into dark corners and...and...follow the musik, Kitty. Follow the music!

Nightingale has posed:
     Someone must have been sympathetic to a student who should, by rights, still be back on school grounds. It seems today, that someone sympathetic was Kitty. Shannon's dressed for the warming weather of spring, with a deep red patterned peasant skirt, ankle length, a black cropped scoop neckline top with three-quarter length sleeves, and simple black flat shoes. Her hair is long nad loose, but for the little blue braid on the left side of her face, with its three tiny silver beads on the end. Her wings are in evidence, very fitting for the location. However, this morning, her left arm was held against her side in a sling, keeping her shoulder and arm immobile.

     The winged teen's eyebrows went up as she heard the music. There had been no notifications on community boards or posted on shop windows about a performance using the space inside the church.

     So why was 'Swan Lake' playing from inside the church?

Dagger has posed:
As the music builds within the church, Tandy continues to leap, spin and dance. Light flickers off her body, casting haunting shadows to pull and ripple about the walls of the dark, abandoned church. "Ty, are you okay over there?" She calls out as she lands once more on her tippytoes. As she flattens out, she whirls her hands about to create a beautiful swirl of light to give the church some more visibility as she strains to look towards the altar. "Do you want to talk about last night?"

At the sound of several footsteps entering the church, she immediately straightens up, squeezing her hands into fists as her knuckles flare with several light daggers jutting out, ready to let fly if need be. From beautiful angel to soldier, the emotions shift to one of tense paranoia. "Cloak, we have visitors." She swaps to his codename now.

When she spies the familiar faces of Sam and Warpath, she relaxes visibly, her posturing loosening up. "It's the X-Men." She breathes out as she brushes some blonde hair back behind her ear. When Kitty and Shannon comes in as well, she steps closer towards her partner as she weaves between the pews. She taps the music off on the old radio that is plugged into an extension cable. "Friends of yours?"

Cannonball has posed:
Samuel Guthrie looks over and nods to Warpath, and then when Tandy looks over to the others "Yea, was not quite expecting others, but yea. " He walks into the light a bit more "I think all here can call one another friend or at least not enemy."

Cloak has posed:
"I'm fine." Comes the response from Cloak, his voice low and steady, more conversational than many have heard him as of late. "What's to talk about? Another street warlord, haunted by his own demons. When forced to face them, he tries to hide his own terror under the same threats we've heard a thousand times before. The only difference is he feels a coat of steel will somehow hide him from his own monsters, except they're already beneath it."

As Dagger takes note of arriving visitors, a cool breeze snuffs out the candles as the man rises up from the ground. "I only have one friend, but I will hear out those willing to fight alongside us." This said to Sam as Cloak turns to face him. It puts him in line of sight to the arriving Warpath, but he doesn't look on edge by his presence.

Warpath has posed:
    James makes eye contact with his fellow team member and will move across to stand next to Sam. Offering a sense of unity and solidarity. James himself is a man of few words. His motions are silent, footfalls in line with one another and silent as well. With his heightened senses, he also takes note of Kitty and Shannon. Of whom he knows their scents well from just being around them in the school. He also intends to let Sam speak for the group until he is actively engaged or asked questions of.

    The one thing James is curious about is Cloak himself. The movements and apparent 'floating' of the man in the tattered robes is unique. James may consider Cloak a dark spirit and Dagger the light which feeds it. As she implied a few days earlier. Yet, still unique and though James briefly acknowledges Dagger's presence with a glance, his eyes are more focused on Cloak with curiousity and heightened awareness - listening, smelling, visual, and tactile through vibrations of voice and footfalls (if any).

Shadowcat has posed:
Kitty silently looks to Shannon as Lockheed's up on her right shoulder riding up there. No cat holo trickery this tie. No dragon chemical warfare either. Thank God.

Kitty's just as lost as Shanon is why the classical music, but she spies Warpath and ducks in behind him. If all else fails, she can explain who/what she is. Shan got brought along for support, and to ensure there's no Shannon/everyone bitterness and bitching about being grounded. Kit Kat has to talk to Logan on that one...really.

Nightingale has posed:
Shannon keeps quiet, falling in line behind Kitty. She gives a quick nod and a smile to Sam and Warpath, and a bit of a warning look to Lockheed.

Yeah, you little stinker of a dragon. I've got my eye on you.

She's puzzled as to the situation, but surely whatever's going on will be made clear soon enough. In the meantime, she offers a dip of her head and a light smile to Tandy and Tyrone, a smile tinged with admiration for their choice of dance and music.

Dagger has posed:
As she steps up next to Cloak, Tandy steps into the darkness that is his swirling body. The dark hides half of her as she pulses with a low glow of warm light, feeding him as he cools her fires. Perhaps in a way, this is symbolism. The light and the dark. A sword becoming a shield. Support. "We had a long night." She says softly as she blows some blonde bangs away from her face, revealing the half cresent moon over one eye.

"Have the X-Men come to talk about plans to go to war? Do we have a deal? We will guide you to those who harm your children and sells them for profit and in return you when we need help, you will aide us when necessary?"

Her eyes flick towards Kitty and the pet dragon on her shoulder, then to the girl with the wings upon her back. For a moment, she glances upwards to the stained glass windows at the other symbols of angels and the grace of the Lord, chewing on her bottom lip. "We are ready to fight when you are. We are ready to make them pay for their sins."

Cannonball has posed:
Samuel Guthrie says, "Well, to be honest, I heard the music and was curious." He looks at them, and says "But yea, I think we should work together more, and also was curious about setting up a bit of patrols of the area around hre."

Cloak has posed:
"That's not as exact of an answer as we were expecting." Says Cloak to Sam after diverting his attention from having an indirect and passive sort of stare off with Warpath from the corner of his eye. He keeps the edge of his cloak draped over Dagger in equal parts support and possession.

"That doesn't sound like an agreement. More like a trial run." He continues in a rolling, considering, but wary sounding tone. "But, one we may be willing to entertain. If we know who all we'll be expected to deal with and where they stand. We don't have time to try and work-date your entire team. It sounds like you've all been made aware of our mission and our means of accomplishing it. If people aren't okay with that, fine. They can stay out of our way. If they want to help, then they can step up and do it."

Warpath has posed:
    James offers a straightforward, concise answer, "We're here to help." and that's where he leaves it. He's already discussed things and intentions with Tandy who likely relayed the information to Cloak - her partner. So he doesn't feel that he needs to explain further. He's well aware of Kitty and Shannon lurking at his flanks.

Nightingale has posed:
     There had been rumblings of troubles in the streets of Bushwick. That was no secret to anybody who lived or worked there. The only thing Shannon /hadn't/ really heard was the extent of such troubles. But with Sam, Warpath, and Kitty here? Yeah. Things were more serious than she'd heard.

     So what was she doing here? Why had Kitty brought her along? It was kind, sure, and flattering that the guidance counselor felt she could be trusted enough.

     But it still didn't answer /why/.

     She was going to have to have a talk with Kitty later. For the meantime, she smiles lightly at Tandy and Tyrone, her right wing ruffling fairly easily, but her left one having some difficulty with movement. "If there is a way to help..." she offers, echoing Warpath.

     Hell, if she was here, she was at least going to save her questions for the senior team members for later, and back them up in the here and now.

Dagger has posed:
"We are going to war, Cannonball. We are not forming a softball team." Dagger says as she curls herself within the folds of Cloak's fabric. "We do whatever it takes to rid this city of the drugs, the pain, the sins. The people who are killing these children are not ..." There is emotion in her voice. This is hitting right to home. "We are not looking to bring anyone to justice, because Cloak and I do not see them as human. We see them as prey. We have found them unworthy to have their light."

Such words from the beautiful ballet dancer. She could be the girl next door, but deep inside she is just as broken as the sidewalk outside the church. "Now that we have put the Chickenhawk gang down, this Madame has sought out new rats to dance for her. More thugs, greedy with the promise of money and power. They have six children in their possession that will be heading to Pier Seventeen tomorrow night."

"This can go one of two ways." Dagger says bluntly. "We go tonight and rescue them, or we wait one more day to track them to the pier and uncover the rest of their plans. We still do not know which ship they are transporting the children to, which country they are being sent to, or the ID of this mysterious Madame they allegedly work for. The longer we wait, the worse it can be for those mutant children."

Cannonball has posed:
Samuel Guthrie nods, and says ""I am not looking for a softball team, I am looking the patrols, so that once we have gotten these people taken care of, we do not have another come in and start. we need to deal with the problem yes, but also need to prevent it from happening again.

Cloak has posed:
"Dagger is right." Says Cloak with a growing scowl, though that mostly seems to be his default expression. "They don't have the blessing of time on their hands, and so neither do we. As soon as night falls to give us some cover we're going to the docks. They're our first priority, then we'll gather what information we can in the process of securing them and after."

Psylocke has posed:
At Xavier's Mansion, there was someone who remembered a meeting from a few nights ago and she wanted more information. Unfortunately, she didn't know of a way to meet the duo again unless it was by happenstance at Club Evo. Unless she cheated. Thus, she found herself in the special chamber far under the mansion, utilizing a machine she preferred to leave to others. She had been trained on it, could use it, but her control wasn't as precise as the Professor or Jean. Yet, Cerebro was a tool that helped her pinpoint that signature.

She placed the helmet back down in place then moved to a corner of the room. "Lights off." The room went black.

In the corner of the church, a shadow figure stepped out of the darkness there. Glowing yellow eyes and the flare of a red triangular symbol over one eye were the only thing not all consuming darkness. The figure began to form into the shape of a woman then a moment later, manifested into the normal Betsy. Jeans, an ecru sweater, boots on her feet. Her purple hair was pulled back in a high ponytail. For a moment, the red triangle was visible on her face then it disappeared entirely.

Taking in all the people present, her surprise was evident. "I didn't realize it was a party. I would've brought snacks," she said to the group. Then she looked to Dagger and Cloak. "I apologize for the intrusion. I wanted to speak with you again. If I had know there was a meeting, I would've arrived in a normal way." Since she's guessing this was arranged ahead of time, not realizing it was random thanks to beautiful music.

Warpath has posed:
    James nods. Accepting the directive and direction of Cloak's expressed goals. He's still deferring things to Sam and will remain silent until there's something that needs to be said. He's muscle. He does take note of the new arrival with the purple hair and the purple scent. Though, it's doubtful she uses Aussie brand shampoo.

Shadowcat has posed:
Kitty's been listening to all this quietly as she speeaks up finally. "I'll help out, but with a caveat. I will help my fellow friends" she says. Not revealing she's an X-Man may bite her in the butt, but...hey, Kitty's got the students to think about. First and foremost, her minset is she's a guidane counselor first, X-Man second in this moment. So she's following the lead of Warpath and the other X-Men. It's not that she isn't confident.

It's that she's not confident stood here, now, with a wounded but healing up Shannon, at least, healed up to the point of only needing a slingg that. is. Discretion's a thing with Kit Kat.

Hence why she's been quiet, listening, absorbing info.

Nightingale has posed:
     When Shannon hears those words from Tandy, her expression shifts to a pure, utter rage. Her right hand balls up into a fist at her side, and even the fingers of her left hand, caught up in a sling as her arm is, flex a little bit in a similar manner. Her right wing spreads out to its full span, while its mate cannot quite echo its motion just yet. She looks straight at Cannonball, utterly and completely furious at what she is hearing. Kidnapping mutant children, and for what purpose?

     "You know I'll do what I can, big brother, where and when possible." Her voice has gone cold and deadly, a drastic change from the lighter, gentler tones directed at Tandy and Tyrone just a few minutes before.

Dagger has posed:
"Tonight, we go to war. But we need more information about who is running the operations at the Pier. We followed one of the new members of this gang who has stolen the children. He was sloppy. They are at an abandoned candy factory on 49th street. " Dagger steps away from Cloak, peeling away from the darkness as she makes her way to a wall where a map has been pinned to it. She points to a red circle on the map with a thumb stack sticking out the middle of it. "But this is not a war for children." This is mostly said in regards due to an injured Shannon before them. "I don't wish to bring angels into hell."

She purses her lips together thinly, her expression still hard as stone. "Hello again." She says to Psylocke as she appears out of the shadows, much like her partner does when traveling through the dark dimension. Perhaps they have bumpe into each other on the corner of Depression and Misery a few times in there. "This was not a planned meeting, though I believe in fate. We are in a church after all." She says as she turns towards the others. Her eyes train upon Kitty and Shannon, then back to Warpth and Betsy as it appears Sam had to take a call and get fresh air. "Are these also .. teammates of yours?" She glances back to them. "My name is Dagger and this is Cloak."

Cloak has posed:
"Your fury is commendable, sometimes that's all that keeps you alive." Cloak remarks as his eyes turn towards Shannon, shining dark from the shadows the rim of his hood provides. "But injuries aren't for the battlefield. I'm sure you'll find a way to make yourself of use, just don't jeopardize anything by jumping into what you can't do."

The shadowman walks over to join Dagger at the map, regarding the two-dimension rendering of the city before turning back to the collected party, now including a Betsy! "I don't know what all you can do - any of you, really - but know this is going to be a fight. So make sure you're ready for that, and know that if it means freedom over death for those kids, that I will be getting those kids out." A cold, soldier's way of saying he'd leave them to die. There's no emotion in it, which may make the statement all the harsher.

Red has posed:
Alice had needed to pack the last things, so she had hitched a ride with Kitty to gather those clothes from home, which also lead to her coming late to the church. She takes a moment at the door to do the cross before properly slipping in, spotting the small crowd with Kitty. Almost impossible boots, Tartan skirt and a Flak jacket over a T-shirt make her outfit as she hauls a heavier Backpack in. "Kitty, got my stuff!" she announces as she closes in to the group, only recognizing one other. "Uh, Shannon, right? What did yea do?! That looks horrible!"

Psylocke has posed:
"Some people here are X-Men. Others are allies. It is up to them who wants to reveal themselves," Betsy says as she joins the small group. She looks at the map then does a quick confer with someone who had been there prior to her arrival to fill in the blanks, telepathically so as not to interrupt the conversation. With the puzzle more complete, she considers. "The X-Men cannot condone killing of people, without trying to take them in for justice first. However, as I mentioned at our last meeting, members of the group are more than welcome to make their own choices to act outside the team."

She looks to those present, giving them that moment to make their decisions on their own paths before focusing on the duo again. "I will assist you. As myself, not as a representative of the X-Men. I also will be able to get you more intel if you point me in the right direction. I'm a telepath, along with a few other talents such as the shadow teleportation I used to arrive here."

Shadowcat has posed:
Kitty nods to Betsy. "I will help you as myself as well" she says. No sense in revealing herself, really or putting her students she guides at risk. If she's going to do this, she'll do it off her own back....

Looking over to Cloak and Dagger, Kitty nods. "I can get into places and find out what's going on if you need it. I can phase through things" she says and whirles hearing her name, then looks to Alice. "What....you showed up here. Okay, Did you get everything? You kind of crashed a meeting that we all showed up to" Kitty offers

Warpath has posed:
    James listens to Psylocke. She's got rank on him and Sam. It was originally Sam's operation. Now that she is here, she's likely going to be the one to guide his hand. He looks to Psylocke, hears her words, agrees with her considerations and will abide by her idea of not killing. So, he will nod in acceptance then look back for Cloak and Dagger's reaction and subsequent hashing out of the goal.

Nightingale has posed:
     Shannon simply turns to Cloak and Dagger, pinning them with a look that is pure black fury. Her voice is even, yet thrumming with undertones that would brook no opposition. "I may be young," she begins. "And I may have a lot to learn. But I have already done more than most will in three lifetimes. I might be injured, but do not count me out." She takes a few deep breaths, glancing back at the others. "I'm one of the lucky ones. If I can help these children have the same chances I have, then please, do not stop me. THere are always ways to serve, even for the least of us."

Dagger has posed:
"Do you agree, Warpath?" Dagger asks the tall, dark and Native American man who is built like a mountain and as silent as a whisper. "From our time together, I have an idea that you align with our mission statement."

Untacking the map from the wall, she rolls it up and slides it into a battered backpack that has seen better days.

She looks pleased at Psylocke, giving a nod of her head in return, followed by a rare, but brief smile. She looks back to the other three that is Kitty, Alice and Shannon. She weighs their words, though looking rather uncomfortable.

"We do not know who you are. These two we have met and have come to terms with our expectations and results. Perhaps you have all seen and done a lot in your life, but what we are talking about is nothing short of war, where lives very well may be lost. Cloak and I have lived this war for the last four years. A war that we have dedicated our lives to. We are not superheroes. We are no one's role model."

There is a soft breath from the light bearer. "We are the hand and fist of the Lord and we plan to purify those who have poisoned and soiled the innocent."

Cloak has posed:
"Yes, you are young." Cloak directs towards Shannon, and as he speaks he reaches out one hand from his cloak to point at her like the iconic image of the Ghost of Christmas Future directing Scrooge to his gravestone. Except there is no real hand, just an effigy of one crafted from shadow. Under that cloak, there is nothing but darkness. Is there even a man at all?

"You may have done a lot in your life, but I'd argue nearly all who're considered 'gifted' have. It's not a competition. Scars aren't to be bragged about, but reminders where you fucked up. What you do in life doesn't matter, if your death undoes that work. Die stupid, die unprepared, and you waste the chance you may have had to do more."

With the whisper of fabric and a growing chill in the air around him, Cloak approaches the winged girl to look down on her from just a few steps away. His face is set like stone, dark and ominous and hungry. "So you want to walk into a war? Tell me then what you're willing to do. If you were facing me, and it was fight or die, what would you do? Because I'm going to give you one mercy they wouln't. I'll give you five seconds to answer."

Shadowcat has posed:
Kitty pulls herself up to her full height. "You want to threaten her?" Kitty asks. "Tell me, what do you get out of this? You claim you want to go into a war and hold the high ground, yet you threaten a young woman?" Kitty asks. Logic. Logic is a pain in the butt huh? She waits, watching.

"What do you want out of this?" she asks looking to Cloak, Dagger then Shannon. Kitty gets Shannon's anger. But she's trying to play it down the middle.

Warpath has posed:
    Answering Dagger's question, but trying to avoid all the drama that's unfolding in the room, James speaks calmly, slowly, "As an X-Man; I believe that everyone diserves a second chance. As an Apache Warrior; enemies of my friends and families will answer to the great spirit for their crimes." then he looks to his unruly 'companions'. "You are making them uncomfortable. Might I suggest we all leave and regroup on neutral ground. This is their home that we have invaded." then looks to Cloak and Dagger, "Please excuse the intrusion. I will now take my leave." and he will walk toward the door that Sam exited and exit himself.

Nightingale has posed:
     Glancing between Kitty and Cloak, she just shakes her head, reachcing out with her good hand to rest it on Kitty's shoulder.

     "He's not threatening," she murmurs. "He's protecting. It's okay."

     Even at mere inches away, Shannon does not flinch from the stony visage staring into the very depths of her soul. "If it's a choice between fight or die, then one would have to fight. Maybe I'm not set for the battlefield, for healing another. But if there is some way to support, and take part in helping these innocents, then please let the ones here who are willing, do so to the best of their ability. There must surely be ways that would not send angels into the depths of Hell, as it might be so put."

Red has posed:
"Sorry for crashing the meeting, but yea, got everything. Is this something like X-gene carriers Anonymous? Yea said yea'd be around here when I'm done packing so I came here. Are yea Planning something with a NYC map? Hey, wasn't that the old meat factory you circled there? People shouldn't go there, that's like the worst area I know around." Alice quips, pointing to the map taken off the wall, then her face goes sour.

"War? I tell you something about war. I work..worked at a shop some streets down. Because some gangers wanted protection money, a cop riddled the shop with bullets trying to get the gangers down. I went to school two streets over there, and some of my friends didn't survive to see graduation because purifier rectal lovers dragged them through the street at a chain. Others were killed by Purple giant robots. Hell, my mom and dad are X-gene carriers. So am I, and there's nothing wrong with that! I live in this area you claim as a warzone. Most days its decently safe, probably safer than the surrounding areas."

Dagger has posed:
As she watches Cloak make his move, Dagger almost expects him to wrap his dark around the winged girl and swallow her up. He's not very good at making conversation. She holds her breath for a moment, then lets it out slowly. There is so many people talking now and she looks twitchy, nervous. This started out as their personal mission. Behind the scenes. Now they are on the news. Working with X-Men. Children. "Cloak, we should go." She says in a shaky voice as she steps closer to him, reaching out to grab him by the hand as her light helps him come to a physical form.

"This was wrong of us to include others. This is my fault. I should have listened to you." There is emotion in her voice, sadness, longing. A longing to live a normal life again. To have friends. Family. But that life is gone. Discarded on the shores of Ellis Island where her new life began.

As she watches Warpath head off, she chews on her bottom lip, then looks to Psylocke. Finally, her head drops as she steps into the waiting folds of the dark. "Come on."

Cloak has posed:
Cloak jerks his head around to face Kitty, his lips pulled back to display his teeth in a predatory glare. For now, Shannon is forgotten. The fabric around him rolls like the clouds of a churning thunderstorm, and there's the low impression of something growling from the dark below. "Do you think anyone we're facing gives A SINGLE FUCK if she's a woman? If she's a kid? Do you think they'll pull their punches or turn their guns because she's hurt? They'd take her the same as the others. Abuse her, torture her, break her mind and body and soul, and when she's shattered and compliant and doesn't even have the will to stand then they'll sell her to someone else who will do it all over again."

Again that shadow-formed hand punches out of the darkness to point towards the stained glass windows. "The world isn't a fair fight. The world doesn't CARE about you, or her, or them, or anyone out there! Check your coat and your emotions at the door, girl. This isn't a movie. People don't get happy endings just because they did the right thing." He spits, this time his voice spiteful and foul, churning with a maelstrom of emotions.

"And *You*." This said towards Alice as she begins talking. "I don't even know who you are." Thankfully, Alice is spared from being the next target of Cloak's ire as Dagger approaches and touches him. His growl lowers as he turns into her contact, giving the fleeting expression of a animal tamer easing a wild beast. "Yes. Let's go."

Psylocke has posed:
"Wait!" Betsy's voice is sharp. She quickly gets it back under control with an added polite, "Please."

She moves forward, walking closer to the group, closer to the duo but not in a threatening manner. Enough distance to show she is being respectful of their comfort but making sure she is now the focus. After all, Cloak is scary as hell, even for someone like her with her experiences. "As you said, this is not a competition to see who has been hurt worse. We all have history. We have scars. We have demons." She manages not to look directly at Cloak when she mentions that last one cause damn, he might just be one. "Everyone does things for their own reasons. You have yours. I have mine. If you still want our help, you have some of us who are willing to do what is necessary. We can get you more information. Tonight, we act to get the kids out. Someone there knows where they are being transported and I can get that information. By telepathy or other means." She has the mind of a Hand assassin blended with her own. There are ways to make others talk. It just might not be pretty.

"Here." She pulls out a telephone, pushing a few buttons. "If you have a phone, I'll send you my number. Call me directly when you are ready to go and I can be there almost instantly."

Shadowcat has posed:
Thank God for Psyloc. She's got Kitty's attention too. Rather then firing back with with the anger she feels at Cloak and/or Dagger intimidating poor Shannon, in Kitty's view. She's focused on her team mate. She's focused now, glad somebody's drawing the attention. Kitty's only what, 20. She's young, too. Though she's wise enough to be a guiding hand for students. They are her folks to protect, hence why she went in so angry on Cloak. That anger's dissipated mind when Psylok takes the lead.

Kitty would take the lead but that'd involve picking a fight since she sees Shannon (and Alice) as hers to protect. She personally recruited Alice into Xavier's. And she's been helping Shannon out, too.

So it's probbably good Psylok's taken the lead on this one...less angry phasing Kitty is good for everyone.

Nightingale has posed:
     "No, it's not a fair fight out there. Kids die same as the rest. Daniel did, and there wasn't a blessed thing anybody could do about it." Shannon's voice has gone from calm fury, to tinged with grief that may never be entirely forgotten. "Nobody cared that he was young. Nobody cared that he was gifted, or any of the other things we think of as 'important'. Same thing could happen to any one of us as to him. We could be broken, we could be shot in the back, any number of things could happen."

     Another look is given to Betsy, then back to Cloak. "I don't think anyone here wants to see anyone hurt worse. Please, hopefully you might be willing to consider accepting help."

     Still she does not flinch, but only sighs softly, the ache to do something... anything... to help those innocents drawing mist over her eyes, to spill its banks and trickle down her face.

     This was not someone who was intimidated. Not by a long shot. The still hand that remains on Kitty's shoulder as if to hold her back. No fight to be had here.

Red has posed:
Alice glares back at Cloak. "Yea don't know me, yes, but neither do I know yea. If war's coming, I wanna do my best to keep the people here safe if I can do something. I couldn't fight Sentinels or Stryker's backdoor lickers in the past, but now? I won't let people die if I can help it." she states, stepping up behind Kitty.

"I just wanted to tell Kitty I am ready to get back to Westchester, but seems like now I got reason to stay."

Dagger has posed:
There is obvious conflict in Dagger's eyes. She knows what it's like to be their age, thrust into a life that she never wanted. She took the pain, the scars, the wars, so that they wouldn't have to. Digging her hand into her backpack, she pulls out her phone and passes her number to Psylocke, then furrows her brows. "We will... be in touch.." She says with a glance to Cloak, then to the others.

"Not everyone is meant for this life. I suggest that most of you try and enjoy a life of being normal. To go to the mall and have friends and enjoy birthdays. Do it while you still can. While you're innocent. Some of us don't have that luxury any longer."

With that, the folds of Cloak wraps about her darkness swirls about them like thick, cold smoke, pulling them away in a quick blink. The air is chilly for a moment in the wake of his exit, the type to cause goosebumps to rise on one's arms.