15568/Just another day in the Hyperloop

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Just another day in the Hyperloop
Date of Scene: 06 September 2023
Location: New Troy Hyperloop Station
Synopsis: Where's transit security when you need it?
Cast of Characters: Guile, Askante

Guile has posed:
While in New York, Guile favors travel by car. It's counterintuitive, but there's just something about driving his '62 Camaro, and as good as the transit system is there, it lacks the freedom that Guile craves.

In Gotham, he'd be concerned about leaving his blue baby unattended. Walk into an apartment building, and that thing will be boosted, or on cinder blocks, before he comes out.

Metropolis through, oh Metropolis. It had the hyperloop network. Fast, clean, and cheap. It could get him anywhere he wanted to be, oh so much faster, than driving. City of Tomorrow and all that jazz.

He was currently sitting in a moulded red cushioned seat, dressed in his military camouflage pants, muscle shirt, and reading the Daily Planet. Even though the seats next to him were empty, he folded it in on itself, so that other passengers could sit down, and wouldn't be offended.
Askante has posed:
Metropolis never goes well for the strange creature known as Askante. If it's not one thing, it's another. It only EVER seems to end up here when there's a big ass threat on the horizon and it got a calling. Today is no different, although this time it's a slow, worrisome burn, rather than a glaring five alarm fire in its head. So it got on a hyperloop car because it -felt- like the right thing to do and has since been... well...

Hunting is a good word. We'll go with that.

It's generally rather frowned on for people to open the doors between cars whilst a train is moving, but that's exactly what happens at the far end of the cabin. A man, a tweaker by the looks of it, or perhaps just having a very bad day, staggers through and drags the back of his hand beneath his nose, hand gripping the doorframe like 'twere an iron vice, white knuckled. Furtive eyes cast about as he gains bearings, then he starts through this cabin, the one that Guile's reading his paper in, with 'zombie lurch' like steps. Despite that, he doesn't seem to be losing balance and seems to know where he's going at least.

But Askante? Well, who knows what everyone else in the cabin sees when it literally just materializes in a scurry of crawling black in the midst of the open doorway. Maybe they see another tweaker, because expectation can paint a picture. Maybe transit cop. Maybe some granny in a frilly dress, who knows? But the battle hardened... they can probably see exactly what it is. And that isn't human at all.

But? It closes the door behind itself. "...leaving doors open on a moving vehicle, I don't know..." mutter.
Guile has posed:
Guile was not an officer of the law, he just made a habit of working alongside one, and he was a good Samaritan, so when the tweaker entered the cabin, well, he didn't immediately take note. He was reading a paper. While rare, it wasn't unexpected that someone would travel between cabin cars. It happened more often in New York than Metropolis, however.

Hearing the zombie like steps, the way the tweaker lurched, he looked up from his newspaper, showing clear signs of concern on his otherwise stone cut face. "Sir, are you all right?" He asked in a clear and sympathetic tone.

Setting his newspaper down on the empty seat to his right, he stood up, grabbing a handle bar with his right hand. It didn't feel like it, the car was travelling at an extreme speed. He was kind of used to an anticipated having balance issues, but none were here.

And then he saw a being materialize. Humanoid, scaled, likely a mutant. Guile wasn't prejudiced. "... right, thanks." He said, to the fellow Samaritan.
Askante has posed:
"M'fine. Gotta... gotta be moving. Thanks..." the words from the tweaker are however, rather hasty and a little too urgent in thier tone. He looks over his shoulder and gives a little squeak as he sees the figure closing the doors. Or... perhaps he's seeing something beyond it. Coincidence is a strange thing, after all.

Incidents happen on subway trains all the time. Half of them never make the news, unless there's something significant in what transpired, of course. The zombie shuffle becomes a full on lurch stagger as the man with his wild, popping eyes aims for the next set of doors to the forward cabin, banging his shoulder against one of the handrails as he does so and staggering, though he doesn't go down, even if that does string a lot of curses from him.

Askante though, looks over the top of heads, watching the man moving. "Not good. That can't ever be good. Oh, you're welcome though. Just a public safety responsibility, right? Right. Excuse me, pardon me, sorry..." as it weaves past other passengers. Then freezes just about where Guile is.

And turns to look back the way it came. "Uh..." a nictating membrane closes over its eyes, though they stay wide open. "Damn."

A very large square of a man seems to be heading with a sort of uncompromising stalk, staring straight ahead to the cabin they're in. The jaw lowered, Stanley Kubric stare is an absolute give away that menace may soon be afoot.
Guile has posed:
"It's all right, sir, you're safe. Just, sit for a moment. You have time for that, don't you? So why do you have to be moving?" He was trying to rationalize with the tweaker, just in case there was some reason behind it, a method to the madness. He had the stray thought of asking the lizardperson to teleport the man to the front of the train, the front most passenger car, but he was stayed for the moment.

With Guile further up, towards the front of the cabin, and the lizardman nearer to the rear door, Guile didn't get a good look at the large man, but he likely would soon.

He was also tempted to ask what the lizardman's story was, but again, with a person in apparent need, the situation called for addressing that first.
Askante has posed:
Askante seems caught. Looking forward to the tweaker and back to the walking Brick-house that's coming toward the so recently secured doors, it casts eyes forward and backward a couple of times. "Blast..." backwards seems to be the way that the instinct is pulling it and it moves back toward the doors between the cabins, putting two hands high on the frame, then another two, bracing itself there and staring back at the oncoming.

The tweaker meanwhile, looks back over his shoulder then keen in Guile's eye. The pupils are tiny, the whites clearly seen all the way around the man's iris. He's absolutely terrified. "No, you have to get out of here. I have to get out of here, he's coming for -me-!"

The calming may have to be protective calming at this rate, though the tall lizardy critter hisses back the way it came for a moment, then? Another crawling, skittering 'living' envelopment of shadow removes it from this side of the barrier and materializes it right behind the oncoming onslaught of muscle, who appears to have drawn a gun. Oh, yes, that'd be the sound of muffled yells and screams in the cabin behind.

And then? Well, then there's a rather high speed, agile-as-heck fisticuffs grapple fest going on back there. Askante's got two hands on the gun arm and the rest of it is kind of piggyback riding and attempting to snarl up the walking brickhouse by dint of climbing him and squeezing. It appears to have half of a half-nelson going on, with the other arms, but it's not got the best of grip there. Meathead's got a neck as thick as a bull's.
Guile has posed:
"You are safe. Whatever comes, it won't hurt you." Guile could see the state of the man, and was trying to be reassuring, though not certain yet whether he wanted to get out of the man's way. He could run to the next set of doors, and while yes, Guile could eventually catch up to him, he was trying to figure this out. "Now, what wants to hurt you, and why?"

Glancing to the lizardperson, he sees it try to support the door, bracing it with its own body and arms. "What's coming?" He asked, over the tweaker. Whatever it was, it was causing some screams that could be heard through the soundproofing.

"What the..." the lizardperson was gone now, teleported wherever. He didn't have a good sight to the other cabin.
Askante has posed:
He soon will do. The passengers at that end of the cabin begin the generalized panicking of people seeing other people wielding guns in a bad fashion. One man yells, "Shit!" and starts leaping over seats and people's laps to get distance between the between-trains and himself. An older lady screams and tries to run also. One person sound asleep on the fast moving train, gets very awoken by this, drool on his chin and bewilderment in his eyes. He probably does the most sensible thing of all with a 'ssssssh!' he slides to the floor and ducks under the bench seat, covering his head with his arms. Clear. Beautiful View of the other cabin.

"I narked on him!" the tweaker jibbers, whimpering as he spots the view because now it's unobstructed. "FUCK!" and he's off again, making it about five foot further forward before a turn on the rails of the hyperlink has him losing balance, staggering sideways and concussing himself unconcious on another handrail. He goes down like a sack of potatos.

The Bulk barn of bad attitude and muscle though, staggers backwards and slams his back into the train doors, earning a visible wince from the creature on his back, likely with the wind knocked out of it. Its grip visibly relaxes a fraction until it shakes it off and attempts to get a better grip. And then? It bites the bastard on the ear. The howl -can- be heard through the air-seal of the cabins.
Guile has posed:
"Right," that all made sense. One criminal narked on another. Now the second wants revenge. Guile caught sight of the commotion through the window to the next cabin, during which time the tweaker staggered forward, only to fall, hit his head, and fall to the ground.

Guile moved towards the man, but was thankful when another passenger did as well, the man explaining, "I'm a nurse, I'll check on him," to which Guile nodded, "I'll be back," and took a few steps towards the rear of the cabin.

Looking up, Guile reached for a hidden button, which could give the door an emergency open, without having to do it by hand. Of course, where he knew them to be on other similar vehicles, it wasn't here. Reaching up, his hand would play about, along the seam, trying to find it, "fine, I'll do it myself," he states in frustration.

Putting his hands together in a loud clap, he squeezes and unsqueezes his fingers a couple of times, before reaching for the door, anything he can grab onto, and starts to spread the doors by hand.
Askante has posed:
The doors are strong, they're meant to be able to resist the generalized traffic of people and the occasional idiot that leans on them. They're also there to stop horrible pressure differentials, but against determined and well trained arms? The mechanism is -supposed- to be able to be forced, after all. Because that's the other side of safety, sometimes, you have to be able to get -out- in a rush. And they give, all of a sudden, granting a rush of wind and a suck of the air out of the lungs with the change in pressure that might take a moment to recover.

The yelling is a lot louder now the doors are open. The field of play is quite small though, some other passengers of a braver sort have made a human shield further away, keeping people from doing that thing that humans do so very well, of trying to rubberneck a disaster. There's even a broken phone where some college student who thinks he's immortal tried very hard to get this all on video for the sake of tiktok or youtube or whatever. Some sensible person took -that- temptation away.

"Somebody hit him!" Askante yells, as once again, it's slammed into the side doors, this time releasing its grip in a scurry before it gets horribly winded and slipping like a greased monkey from back to front. It headbutts the meathead, to an immediate tune of "OOOFFF! Bad idea, well done me..."
Guile has posed:
For a moment, Guile contemplated what he knew of the situation thus far. A panic-stricken man fled one cabin for another, claiming to have narked on someone who was chasing him. There was genuine terror in the man's eyes. The lizardperson had teleported into the cabin, and was now engaged in a fight with the rather large and impressive man. Everyone in the cabin was hiding. A phone was damaged on the floor. And the man just slammed the lizardperson into the side doors.

"All right, I'm only going to say this once. Stop." And for added emphasis, intimidation tactics, he brought his fists together, one hand covering the other, as he cracked his knuckles, and then repeated the trick with his other. That was easy. Next, he cracked his neck muscles too. Fewer people could do that. And he assumed a defensive stance.

When the big guy didn't stop in a 'timely' manner, Guile did just as Askante had asked, "I warned you," checking to see if it had a glass jaw, with a mean upper right.
Askante has posed:
"Fuck off, Jarhead!" The meatblock honestly sounds a bit strained at in that tone, because he's just a little busy with the scurrying creature that's snarling up his limbs and using him like a climbing frame. So that'd be a 'no' then.

The square manages at this point to get a good enough grip on Askante's coat to haul the slender lizard creature off ot himself by sheer strength and....

About to throw him into Guile, that uppercut comes in like a Clue by four and with an almost slow-motion jerk back of neck and jaw, the brick-house goes down.

There really ought to be an announcer saying 'K.O.' for that finishing move, with bright neon flash across the screen. But there isn't. Even if we want there to be.

And the grabbed and almost-tossed Askante does a little forward flip, losing the grip on the gun for an instant, bounces it like a hot potato and finally catches it with its tail.

Silence a moment, with a lot of panting. Then there's quite a number of wolf-whistles and cheers and no small amount of applause from the cabin that just got met with Peacekeeping.
Guile has posed:
Guile watched the man collapse under the single punch to the chin. Looking down with disdain, he explained, "Jarheads are marines, I'm air force, we're called zoomers or jet jockies."

And then, as if a blue screen might have appeared with their faces, he added, "If you're going to insult me, get the lingo right."

But of course that didn't happen. Hearing the wolf-whistles and cheers, "is everyone all right? There's a nurse in the next cabin." See to the people first, then deal with the man. Reaching into one of his pockets, he had some zip ties which Chun-Li had given him, and he used them in lieu of handcuffs. "How are you?" He then asked to the lizardperson, who had fumbled and caught the gun, though perhaps got his prints on them. If he has prints.
Askante has posed:
Luckily, scales don't leave prints. They leave completely baffling marks that leave forensic officers being utterly bewildered.

"I've had better days. Thank you..." -- the safety is put /back on/ and the creature releases the cartridge, slapping both gun and cartridge on the ground with two hands -- "I dislike firearms with a burning, angry passion. They get the job done though, I suppose. Far too many people using them solely for their power." It coughs a few times. "Damn, he weighed as much as half a hippopotamus, it seems..." still catching its breath.

Now, finally, someone pulls the emergency cord, now that the situation isn't liable to get worse by sudden slowing of the train. "You alright, officer?" one young woman asks the lizard. "We saw you flash your badge..."

Badge? Are they seeing the same thing? "I'm fine, uh... thank you good citizen." Askante gives a rather expressive 'don't say anything' look in a flash to Guile. "He'll be in custody soon."
Guile has posed:
Guile would reach into the same pocket that he had gotten the zip tie from, and pull out a bag, which he would use to pick up the gun and cartridge, sealing it back up. The bag was actually in a different pouch within the lager pouch. There were internal compartments in it. He would place the gun in there once sealed, evidence for the police. He did not touch the gun directly at any point though.

"You should see the nurse in the next cabin," hearing the coughs. He wasn't sure what the nurse could do for him, but it was always good to get checked out by medical people after an altercation like this.

There was a slight shift of eyes, confusion, looking at the young woman, then to the lizardperson. He picked up on the look, and said nothing, but he was curious.
Askante has posed:
"Nurse can't help me. They wouldn't know what to do. I'll be fine, just give me a bit of time..." Askante murmurs.

The train inevitably reaches its destination station, although slowing at a fast pace. WHen the doors open, transport police are already there, along with paramedics and security, because you never know -why- that cord got pulled until the train's stopped.

It also appears to be Askante's cue to put a finger to its lips and nod to Guile, vanishing in another poof of black and reappearing within his line of sight, but out of public scrutiny, at the far end of the platform. It sits down on one of the benches, looking rather exhausted.

Questions are asked, various accounts are given, the ne'er do well is arrested and his license to carry checked. Guess what, that would be a nope! The tweaker disappeared in the crowd, as would be expected of a Nark, but chances are strong an APB will get put out on him for questioning. When it's all died down, the lizard being is still there, only now it appears to be leaning back against the wall, playing cat's cradle with itself using an old piece of string.
Guile has posed:
These things are never quick. There's an investigation, evidence to gather, things to do, witnesses to interview. Guile was fortunate in that he had an Interpol agent's contact information to provide, and that he was a member of the USAF in good standing. Technically, he was in a jurisdictional grey area, being attached to a police force operation, with broad powers, without actually carrying a badge. Of course, he did everything he could, he was reasonable, measured, and a police officer wouldn't have done things much differently. Sure, they may have used a taser rather than their own fist, but it got the job done.

He was given some information, informed that he might be questioned further at a later date, and allowed to go. When he did, he walked over to the lizardthing on the bench. He had told the truth, that the lizardthing teleported away, suspecting a mutant. He gave a description, even if it didn't seem like it had done anything wrong. He just didn't volunteer that it happened to teleport to the other part of the platform.

Taking a seat, he said, "so, what's your story?"
Askante has posed:
By the time the ex-military gent has arrived at the bench, when all the statements have been taken, business cards for the station and such have been given out and crowds are dispersing... the creature has managed to reach the gordian knot level of cat's cradle entanglement and seems to have tied its digits up in a mess. Keen observation can see it's got an extra knuckle bone on each digit, including its thumb. "My story?"

People are moved on, a janitor starts to buff-wash the platform with one of those rotating disk machines, whistling tunelessly as she does so.

"Oh, my. You ask a complicated one. Or it's very simple, I'm never sure which." It sighs, stares at the string and attempts to detangle itself from the very un-intimidating chinese finger-cuff mess of string that it's got itself mixed up in. "Ahhhhhm... what angle are you asking that from? Immediate action on a train, or what in the name of the Forefathers /are/ you, kind of angle?"
Guile has posed:
Guile was current military, just the military was working with Interpol, and his current assignment had him working with a lot of latitude. He patiently listened and waited, curious, and giving the lizardperson space to open up as much as it wanted to, or to close off. "Most are," he added, as many questions can be answered in detail, or short and to the point.

"Take your pick?" He offers up, not really answering the question, but giving more options to the being. "Thanks for what you did back there, by the way." He would have offered a hand, but as the lizardperson had its fingers in a makeshift finger trap, that wasn't about to happen. "My name is Guile."
Askante has posed:
"Askante. You can call me Aske, if you like..." The thing replied, looking fleetingly sidelong at Guile, offering a thin smile and working back at the knotty mess. One hand is extracted, which makes things easier for the other three. "I'm complicated," it settles on. "And from what I gather, you can see me. Most people can't. They see what makes the most sense to them at the time, which leaves me perpetually wondering what it is they think I am, or did, or was. The girl thought I was a transit cop... I wasn't about to dissuade her otherwise."

Hand two is free! It does a little jazz hands and says a soft 'yay!' with it, then works on the final two.

"You're welcome by the way. I just never really have time, at the time when I'm needed, to explain things usually. I got pulled to that train, something was going to happen that would've had rippling consequences and would've dipped a lot of people in trauma. I'm like a bad penny, I show up usually when there's bad things about to happen. It's just my fate..."

And now, having freed all hands, it detangles the string and wends it back into a small ball, surrendering it to its pocket. This means full attention is on the fly-boy. "Nice to meet you Guile. I'm the Incarnation of Fear."
Guile has posed:
Guile may not be aware of it, but he had access to fundamental forces. He was, to some minor extent, homo magi. He had some magic in his blood. It enabled him to learn to perform his sonic boom and flash kick. It may have enabled him to see Askante for what it really was.

"Nice to meet you, Askanate, and I'm glad you were around. You did good." There was clearly far more to the story than Guile was aware, and he wasn't exactly the prying sort. If it were part of an investigation, sure, he could play 'bad cop' all day. But this was a being who was helpful. If they didn't want to share, they didn't have to.

"Fear huh," he tried not to scoff, confused, curious, disbelieving. "Funny, I would have thought you'd be a giant spider, snake, or a clown." They did seem to be a lot of people's fears.
Askante has posed:
"I can hear that." Askante says in a mild scold. But the Earth taps various people in potent ways, that it has learned a long time ago, makes sense... somewhere. It looks sidelong. "Fear is not an enemy. I have studied the way that it has become in the modern world: people want to be scared, they watch moving pictures of scary things, thrilling for it. But the purpose of fear is to keep you alive and to help you survive. Out of that, was I born. If you want, I can be a frightening thing..." -- it sniffs a couple of times here -- "...but that has very little purpose other than to numb the mind and cause problems."

Suddenly, it looks up, stares down the tunnel, then sighs. "I am sorry, my new-found friend. I have to go. There is something in the tunnel that got alerted when the train slowed. Be well. Keep doing what you do."

And having said that, it does not teleport... it just moves like greased lightning, leaping from the platform and disappearing into the tunnel. No rest for the wicked! Or the remaining earth-bound daemons.