You Shook Me All Night Long

May 23, 2014: Earthquake knocking down the Indian Point Energy Center! We Need Heroes!

Indian Point Energy Center - Midstate New York

Indian Point Energy Center (IPEC) is a three-unit nuclear power plant station located in Buchanan, New York just south of Peekskill. It sits on the east bank of the Hudson River, 38 miles north of New York City. The plant generates over 2,000 megawatts of electrical power, comprising as much as 30 percent of the electricity used in New York City and Westchester county.

Indian Point 1, built by Consolidated Edison, was the first of three reactors at this location. It was a 275-megawatt pressurized water reactor that was issued an operating license in 1962. The first core at the Indian Point power station used a thorium-based fuel, but did not live up to expectations. The plant was operated with uranium oxide fuel for the remainder of its life.

The Unit 1 reactor was shut down in 1974 because the emergency core cooling system did not meet regulatory requirements. All spent fuel was removed from the reactor vessel by January 1976.

The two additional reactors, Indian Point 2 and 3, were built in 1974 and 1976 respectively. Together they generate up to 30% of the electricity used in New York City. The reactors at Indian Point are protected by containment domes made of steel-reinforced concrete that is four- to six-feet thick.



  • Various nuclear plant workers.

Mood Music:
AC DC - You Shook Me All Night Long

It's barely perceptible, at first. A slight grumble in the earth. Feels pretty much like a heavy transport truck rumbling by. The vibration is more sustained, however. It lasts far longer than the passing of a truck. Eventually, buildings sway and the earthquake resistant features of their architecture are challenged. The residents of New York City are actually forced to stop and react.

Indeed, the quake is felt as far north as the border and as far south as the southern end of New Jersey. There'll be headlines about it, tomorrow, to be sure.

Nearly 41 miles north of the City proper, however, an aging nuclear plant also feels the rumble. Alarms sound as a series of glitches hit the system. There's a brownout down in NYC, in response, as the system tries to compensate. Then, the first valve goes, spraying pressurized, boiling water all over. The earthquake jars the cooling rods off their axes, and they jam in their sockets, unable to lower into the core to stop the reaction.

In the reactor building, safety crews go swiftly into action… and a young office intern makes a bad tweet. Before long, the media has wind of it: Nuclear Meltdown In-Progress. The Spectre of Three Mile Island Returns.

Bruce Banner had been keeping an eye on the plant for the last couple of days. He'd been tracing stolen nuclear materials viable for gamma generation. Someone was shipping them out of the trainyards near the Meat Packing District under cover of night. Bruce had spent the last few years of his life making anyone who tampeereed with gamma learn to regret it. If the Hulk let them live.

He'd been taking a short nap, though, in his beat-up pickup, a trucker cap pulled down to hide his face. When he feels it, though, he sits up straight and climbs out, getting out his binoculars to take a look at the planet. He can see the crews on the move. Oh shit…

News does travel fast. Particularly within a certain organization that have more scientists and more techs in its payroll than most, excepting the Federal Government (and that is sometimes questionable). While it's not 'law enforcement' worthy, it is potentially 'public safety' worthy, and more than a few phonecalls are made to key places within the infrastructure to be sure that all is well, and to assure the different managers that support and aid are available, should it be needed.

That said, it's not a surprise if one, perhaps two of their 'finest' (Clint's conceit, to be sure!) are sent up under more quiet circumstances- particularly where a nuclear power plant is concerned. There may or may not be records of threats against the area (SHIELD never tells), and it's always a good idea to have resources in place and on the ground should the proverbial excrement hit the rotating blades.

So.. Agent Barton is on his way north.

Simon Williams, occasionally hyped by his publicist as the Wonder Man, usually just before someone brings up Wonder Bread or some other inconvenient parallel name, is on vacation. He's finished his voluntarily agreed upon mandatory community service, and he's decided to look at the lovely Hudson Valley. Visit beautiful Indian Point. See the lovely domes, the right phallic lighthouse that looks like a rocket. Observe the lovely brown-brick and white-brick of the dual facilities. Why does this look familiar? OH RIGHT! Chernobyl! It had the same domes, in that ridiculous movie Escape To Chernobyl that Simon turned down — his first turn-down ever — only it's WOAH. The ground is doing the LA Conga! Wait, this is New York, right?
Alarms go off. Simon… slaps one hand over his face. "Hero time. Feh."

Meanwhile, in a New York City club…

Live performances of bands all across the country are far from unusual around here, the stage being open to most anyone willing to perform. Some bands are well known. Most are decidedly less so. It's become something of a proving ground for those ambitious enough to try and get their work off of the ground. Today's no different, a peculiar blend of metal guitars and what could best be described as Satan's metal fabrication plant colliding with synthetics and some chick screaming herself raw until it sounds more like the death cries of a giant insect getting squished by the massive tire of reality. No part of it is subtle.

Then the earthquakes happen. At the club it's a little easier to miss with those pesky bass notes.

When the -power- goes out, however… Azure Decline, unplugged.

Then there's the news. "We're gonna have to call it early, gang. I'll catch up, usual spot."

Talia Wagner, reality-saver extraordinaire! Still lacking proper security clearance for a nuclear power plant. Have Foomp, will travel.

Normally this is not Huntress' kind of thing, preferring to keep her (anti-)heroics closer to home and targeted at the Mafia. But something about all of this has made her curious to the point of being unable to ignore it. So here she is, patiently watching until the time the stuff starts to hit the fan.

Frowning, the woman starts to climb her way down from the perch she found for herself in the form of something semi-tallish kind of near the plant's perimeter, hurrying as fast as she can so 1) she won't be up there if something goes real wrong and it were to topple over and 2) she can hurry to the site and see if she might be of some help.

The first reactor unit in the complex is dormant. Its fuel was removed nearly 40 years ago. The second, however, is 10 months past its expected end-of-life — 10 months past its official license expiry date, formally working under a "Period of Extended Operation" pending a review by the NRC. The third is still properly licensed… at least for another 18 months, anyway. The state governor has long since demanded that both reactors two and three be decommissioned at the end of their current licenses, but that hasn't happened. Yet. Tonight may change those plans.

Unsurprisingly, however, it's reactor two that's the center of the problem. Old, approaching (okay, AT) end-of-life, and now with a serious malfunction. It's actually got backup systems that, even now, the safety crews are trying to get working. The problem, however, is the… aftershocks?

Are they aftershocks? Has the first rumble actually stopped, yet?

Well, yes. The first rumbled did stop. But the aftershocks, while not nearly as long, continue. And they're almost as strong. Little rhythmic pulses that would have made a great bass line for Azure Decline. A little irregular, though, to really help the group make it bigtime.

The site itself is controlled chaos. Everyone knows what they're supposed to do. Non-essential personnel are being evacuated. Essential admin personnel have been moved to a mobile command center at the edge of the property… leaving the Homer Simpson teams to deal with the on-the-ground action. (Fortunately, however, these teams really are much, Much, MUCH better than Homer Simpson.)

As long as none of the graphite in the reactor reflector is released, this plant might avoid Chernobyl's fate. But, the high pressure water begins to break other valves, as well. The stuff is nearly 350-degrees Fahrenheit and spraying with the pressure of a firehose. Fortunately, the pipe system that's burst are the ones most closely connected to the steam turbines, and not the ones carrying the irradiated fluid.

But where there's one old pipe, there are inevitably more. Clock's ticking.

Bruce Banner has broken into a run at this point, but, instead of running away from, he's running toward the reactor. He doesn't have a fancy costume or silly underwear, just a guy in jeans and a t-shirt, jumping over the occasional obstacle until he hits the chain link, running along the perimeter until he can get to the open gate. And what's he going to do about the guards.

He hasn't really thought about that. He's mostly trying to keep calm. Breathe. You can handle this, Bruce. Don't get excited. Keep that heartrate down. That's right. Steady. Steady.

On the way up, Clint's in contact with people on the ground, getting reports. Half of the science is way over his head, but the meaning is clear. Evacs are in play and it's a matter of public safety that it not get blown out of proportion.

Barton is -not- a people person.

From reports on the ground to reports back to HQ, being the middleman in it is more than a little annoying. Particularly when questions are asked that he has no idea what the answer is, or even should be at this point. "ETA is ten minutes. I'll be able to let you know then…"

First thing to do, Newb Hero: Find the command center so you can offer help. Simon, like Bruce, is not wearing a fancy costume. Just jeans, a black tee-shirt with a big red graphic "W" wrapped around it, and boots. And ruby-quartz aviator glasses. Pretend you don't see the rocket belt. That's just, uh, two cell phone belt packs, yeah, that's the ticket. OK, time to practice that "Single Bound" trick again. THOOM! he jumps and his arc is going to drop him, conveniently, next to the guys wearing the yellow and orange vests, with radios.
Note, eagle eyes do NOT discern the skinny, nervous man running toward the gate. That's because eagle eyes are looking for signs of trouble, and Number Two has steam and some kind of hot-spots.


Alright, so Talia cheated. She can only travel so far via teleportation, unless she happens to have..a Bamf. This time it's going to be a one-way trip, however.

"Bamf bamf!"

"Yes, I -know- the plant's in a bad way, that's why we're-"


"-here… Allllright, thanks for the backup. Really appreciate it." Here she stands, alone and in full stage gear that makes her stand out almost as much as the whole blue-tailed girl thing goes. Fortunately for her there are other people arriving to the scene which are also slightly less than subtle. Between the reedy geeky guy and Mister Cellphone Rocketbelt she can go ahead and assume she's not alone here. Hopefully they aren't bad guys! Rocketbelt guy looks like he's stopping for directions. The geeky not. Either he knows what he's doing or he's going to make things worse.

That's the one she's going to follow! Banner's about to have another daytime demon hunting him down. "Please tell me you're some kinda nuclear physicist or something!"

At this point Helena's really starting to question why the hell she's doing this. She's ill-equipped for a sitation like this one and she's already picturing herself coming out of it glowing in the dark and unable to have kids. "What was that they say about curiosity and c…"

One of the aftershocks hits, interrupting her not-so-inner-musings as she is stent staggering. "Oh for the love of…" It takes a while for her to regain her feet, only able to do so when that tremor stops and she finds herself having to regain her balance. "This is not my idea of fun." Sigh. "Oh well. Will be something to write home about. I guess. Even if it'll just be me writing to myself…" Snorting, she gets herself back in the game and hurries forth!

As Banner rushes toward the gate, at least one guard tries to intercept him, his partner a few steps behind. "Sir? Sir! Stop! You're not permitted in there!" Yes. He's going to get in the way. And he's going to try to grab the guy trying not to morph into the angry big green guy. Murphy's Law is alive and well in New York State.

Of course, the reports Clint's getting back are going to include mention of the guy rushing the gate. And, likely the blue girl bamfing in behind him. The site is ordering a full lockdown, now.

Wonder Man's surprise entrance only exacerbates that situation, and startles the life out of the crew chief in yellow-and-orange vest, while he's giving his update to admin command. "Who the hell — ? Buddy, you can't be here," he says, pretty much echoing the gate guard contending with Banner. A beat. "Waitaminute. Are you that guy from that movie…?" Yeah. Way to stay on point, there, Homer.

Of course, said gate guard really is having a bad day, what with blue-tailed rockers 'porting in out of nowhere, adding the stench of rotten eggs to the whole mix. It's his partner who reacts first, however, since he's the one not tied up with trying the stop the skinny guy in the jeans in tee-shirt. "What the hell? Get back! Get back, now!"

And, yes. Out come the guns. Because that's how startled people with weapons react when demonic freaks appear. Even when they're trained.

So, really, it all depends on just how Huntress approaches all this, as to the reaction she receives — or how far into the plant she gets. Because security personnel is now thoroughly distracted at the main gate… and fully prepared to do whatever they need to in order to keep everyone safe. From their perspective, this just changed from a bad day for facilities management into an act of domestic terrorism.

Bruce Banner had, luckily, prepared himself for guard trouble, so he's not too taken aback when they try to block his path, "Look, my name's Dr. Bruce Banner, I'm a nuclear physicist. If you want to stop this, I can really help. Call anybody with a high security clearance, they'll…probably vouch for me," he says. Of course, then they'll also send some SHIELD goon squad down here to try and round him up and slap him in a cage. Don't think about it, deal with with it when it happens AHHHHHHHHH DEMON! DEMON!

"What the fuck?!"he shouts, startled and jerking back from Talia's sudden arrival.

"Oh, you have got to be kidding me. Rushing the gate?"

The little black convertible gets a little more gas, and the speed limit is quickly forgotten on the travels up the highway. Barton is going through the short list of known 'terrorists' in the area and is coming up blank as to who would be so .. inept as to rush a gate to attack it. His list, ie SHIELD's list has more.. professionals on it. Besides, wouldn't a meltdown happen from the inside? It would stand to reason, then, that IF they were there, they'd already be inside.

Time to shift over to the concept that the gate rushers were eco-freaks. So, non-lethal.. dammit. (Makes it harder.)

Sliding in the dirt in a 'controlled' brake, Hawkeye grabs his gear and makes his way first to the gathering of mid-level managers who are paid enough to be able to be -outside- of the facility when things like this happen… but out of the corner of his eye, a flash of -blue- catches his eye long before any familiar faces make themselves known. It's a quick introduction he gives, more an 'I'm with the government and I'm here to help' attitude with name.

"Lock it down, and keep the local police away. County and Feds only." That way, the locals can deal with, well.. the locals.

Wonder Man puts his hands up as guns come out, so they know he's not hostile. "Seriously? Yes, I am. Wonder Man. The guy who can't be hurt by explosions. If you need someone to help out with the broken steam pipe over in that building," and he points, "I can do it, but I need someone to tell me what to do, I'm not a nuclear physicist. Just invulnerable. I'm your emergency fix-it brick if you need me."
And then they start yelling at Dr. Banner… WAIT. Simon turns, excitedly, a bit fanboy maybe.
"Dr. Banner? Is that you? He's for real, guys, that's THE Dr. Bruce Banner, he guest lectured high-energy physics at Emory six years ago. That man knows his Gamma Rays."

Guns. -Guns!- Talia stops short when guns are pulled out, complete with three fingered hands coming upward. And a tail. "Whoa, easy there, Super Troopers..! You've got a job to do, I read ya, but I'm one of the good guys! By contract it's my job to help out in times of dire circumstances. Verbal agreement, really. An actual contract may or may not exist."

Banner - "Doctor -Banner?- Guys, you've seriously gotta let this guy in, he knows what he's talking about." Pause. Sidelong glance to Bruce. "You do know what you're talking about in this reality, right?" Second pause. "Not the fuck, more of a Nocturne. How much do you weigh?"


Two puffs of disgustingly scented magenta clouds later and TJ is past the guards and through the gates, with a Banner along for the ride at the end of her tail. They've traveled all of a hundred and twenty-five feet. She's already looking winded, holding a palm to the side of her head. "Tell can help out here..or did I just commit a serious crime for nothing… Still..we need to keep moving..!"

Huntress is visibly armed so it probably will be something that gains the attention of those guards once she approaches the gate. The guards are entirely too skittish for her liking, that being what causes her to hold her hands up as if surrendering to those who are holding the gate. "I can help with evac, if you guys need it."

At the same time she offers she looks side to side, searching for a way in in case they turn her away. Like it or not, guys, you're going to have the crossbow-wearing woman helping regardless of if you want her to or not. She then gives everyone present a look, a brow slowly arching. "Ah. Well… what they say, guys," she says while hooking a finger… where Bruce was standing just before the teleporting woman did her thing. "Oh. Well. Alright…"

Jeeper's creepers! But that's a whole lotta capes crawling out of the woodwork. None of whom actually wear capes. (Edna would be impressed.) Regardless… that young office intern? Yeah. Not likely gonna have a position come morning.

However, the fact no one's actually offering the gate guards violence is a really good thing. It keeps nervous fingers off sensitive triggers. For the moment, anyway. Long enough, perhaps, for Hawkeye to wade into the fray and sort things out?

Wonder Man is, more-or-less, recognizable. That Banner's name is being bandied about by almost everyone, is also kinda helpful. Except, of course, that it's being bandied about by all of the interlopers, and not the energy center crews. That said, the crew chief is savvy enough to recognize the name. And to recognize the sort of help a invulnerable guy like Williams could be. "I've heard of Banner," he says, glancing between Williams, the nuclear physicist, and the nervous gate guards. "But, our best guess is the coolant system has misaligned. The rods should drop into place automatically upon interrupt. But, as long as the ground keeps jumping like a cheap motel bed massager, it's only going to get worse." That's his professional assessment.

Because, yes. There are still aftershocks rolling through periodically. And every time one does, another valve strains.

"Curtis!" the sound crackles from the chief's radio. "Heat exchanger's nearing crit. Intake'll blow, if we don't get pressure off." Which means fire. And probably a broken reactor reflector. Which means radioactive fire.

Yep. Clock's still ticking.

Bruce Banner rips himself free of Nocturne's tail, stumbling to his hands and knees, "Hold…onn…" he says, grunting, and he starts to breathe in and out hard, huffing breaths, like he's hyperventilating. He reaches down into his pocket and pulls out what looks like an asthma inhaler, popping it to his mouth. Looks standard enough, to anyone who doesn't realize that he's loaded the thing with a Valium-based misting agent. He punches the ground once, a few small cracks forming around the blow but, after a seconds, his breathing starts to slow. He manages to force his eyes up to Nocturne.

"Don't…startle…me." he says.

Finally, the babble from the rest gets through to him, "Then we need Mr. Invulnerable to force them in. And if they're broken…check the defunct plant. They might still have their rods…" he pants, pushing himself back up to his feet, seeing people staring at him, "Well? Do it!"

Actually, from the sounds of everything that Clint can actually take in, things are actually looking up. Dr. Banner is here? And.. someone who claims to be invulnerable. Works for him. "Great. Use what manpower now we've got available, and I'll keep a line open." Not that the archer can really do much against a nuclear reaction.. other than pray. And he's not all that religious. (Even on a deathbed a little while ago.

"And someone give those people radios."

Oh, for leaping out loud. "I see a lot of heat coming off that building, and I'm pretty sure punching things is not the answer," Simon mutters. And when the guy says something about making the ground stop, and then Banner says to bulldog the stuck rods… "Look, I can't stop earthquakes. That's crazy Superman stuff, I have no idea where to even start. But I can … yeah. What he said."
Simon leaps, rockets firing once he's up in the air, taking him towards Reactor 2. "Tell 'em I'm coming in!" he yells back. Yeah, because otherwise, they'll think it's a movie or something and mob craft services, instead of bringing backup cooling back online.
Wait for a radio? That would have been sensible, wouldn't it. Maybe someone over there has one.

What, like startling by teleportation is any worse than a nuclear reactor going critical..? Well, the reactor can kinda be seen a little better than an unexpected leap through space. If Talia could make herself any smaller of a target she may well physically collapse in upon herself from the effort, hands pressed over her mouth with those blank golden eyes staring wide. "Ohgosh I'm so sorry it's just that we're on limited time and I'm pretty sure you can help and we should really keep moving here!"

She'll a hand on his should-okay, maybe not. She stops herself short, quickly reeling that arm back in.

"Wanna try some deep breathing exercises while we're running for our lives..?" she hesitantly suggests before getting a look behind herself, with a slight flinch barely suppressed as though expecting to get shot by an assault rifle for still standing about, now on the 'wrong' side of the fence. This is when she notices, and recognizes, Clint Barton. "You..! You're really a - oh damn." Really SHIELD. And she stalked the guy in the Superhero Supply store with a toy raygun. Fancy that!

Progress! Wonder Man is boldly rocketeering forward. Standing around isn't going to help, thus TJ is now darn near galloping across the grounds after Simon. How long do they have to save this place..? Not long enough!

"Why does this seem like a superbly bad ideaaaaa!"

"There's no time to wait for you guys to pull your thumbs out of your asses… so excuse me, please."

Huntress bolts past the guards, only stopping if made to but whomever does try to keep her from going in to help will have a fight on their hands. The pistols and crossbow stay where they are, holstered at either thigh and upon her hip, respectively, the firepower not needed for what she's going to try to do. Nope, helping evacuate people does not require shooting. She hopes.

Banner's initial unsteadiness may cause some concern, but his instructions are clear enough, and more or less echo Curtis' thoughts. So, the crew chief motions to a couple of his guys to follow Williams as he rockets towards the critical plant.

At Hawkeye's command, radios are passed from a couple of crewmen to the capes that can help. As Huntress darts in, there's some token effort to follow her. An extra gate guard or two accompanies her, simply in case further help is required. Generally, the personnel at the plant are pretty good. Evacuation drills are regular enough, they know what they're doing. The problem comes in those areas cut off by the scalding steam and pressurized water. It's the next best thing to a fire barrier.

At the critical plant, when Williams and Wagner arrive, things are genuine mess. There are several superheated geysers, now, and visibility is actually difficult because hot water doesn't stay in liquid form unless it's under immense pressure. Thus, once the water breaks out of the pipes, you end up with a scalding fog surrounding the initial spray and spreading out from there. Too, you end up with excessive amounts of smothering humidity, which makes it very, very hard to breathe. Safety equipment is certainly advised for those that aren't invulnerable. That, or limited exposure.

Bruce Banner sighs, "I probably need to get to the central control room, so I can get a good look at those gauges," he says, clearly having calmed down to a great degree. Sure, the plant was still at risk of blowing up, but Bruce was never afraid of that to begin with. What's the worst that could happen, he would die? Hallelujah.

"And somebody get a radio to that musclehead so he doesn't end up putting tab a into the wrong slot and make things worse. Well, young lady, c'mon, you seem to be my taxi around these parts. Let's go."

Aaand Clint remains outside, and after the overseeing of the radios being handed out, he asks for an ID check. "Okay, guys. I need to know who's on the ground, and where you're headed." And with radios, the makeshift team inside can have guidance from the brains on the hill. (Not 'the Hill'..) He pauses a moment before he ventures, "Dr. Banner. I know you're there. This is Agent Barton. Let me know what's going on, okay?" And if the guy goes green on them? Well, at least he'll have some warning.

Breathing, seeing, all those things that make you feel alive. Well. Yeah. Simon stops to get a radio from one of the safety guys, and peers around. His eyes adjust a bit, and it looks like a dark corridor, with a few bright spots. So this is what the high-energy spectrum looks like. He keys the radio, watching it glitter while he talks.
"OK, Wonder Man here, don't laugh. I'm …woah, aftershock, that wasn't fun. I'm in a steam-filled corridor. There's a glowing guy-shaped spot about a thirty meters to my left, I think that's Dr Banner, and a faint glow from ahead, probably a leak. Heading for the leak. Over."
He starts trotting towards the glow. There's a sound of hissing and the low-frequency groan of mechanical strain in that direction too.

Setback. Infravision isn't..going to help when an entire portion of the facility is filled with scalding hot steam. In fact, it's that much more blinding for Talia. All she sees in there is -heat,- and a helluva lot of it. Heat, and an assorted collection of heroic helper sorts. Who's that other woman out there with the crossbows and black hair, anyway?

Well, Teej has a radio now. So, there's that.

Once more that blank stare turns toward Banner, now teamed with a fairly sheepish expression. "I, uh..can't do that trick twice. Not unless you want to wait a couple more minutes, which we probably don't have. Can you point out where we need to be? I can still climb, if that helps." Presumably. She's very rarely teleported with someone else and already reached her upper limits, which has her mind and body at odds with her pulling any more notably heroics stunts.

Radio. Agent Barton. Good to know she's got a name to go along with the face. "Nocturne here - the vanishing blue chick. Banner's after the control room, I'm gonna tag along as I have no clue what else to do. Does anyone have an idea of how much time we're looking at before this is out of our hands?"

Ugh! They're following her? Huntress does not really play… er, work well with others and has only recently gotten used to the idea of doing the anti-hero thing with someone else. "Going to tail me, huh…?" Insert frowny Huntress here. Shaking her head, the brunette starts to lay down some ground rules while they run towards the facility. "First, do not do anything I don't tell you to do unless it involves rescuing someone I don't catch sight of. Two, stay the hell out of my way," and the third and most important rule, "and don't act like a bunch of stronzi (assholes)."

Those joining her are eventually allowed to take the lead since they know this place way better than Helena does which gives her time to check in with the voice over the radio. "This is Huntress. We're going in to check for anyone needing help and get them the hell out of here."

There are other teams along the way, trying to vent pressure in areas that haven't yet seen a breach, just in case. They're well-equpipped, but unsteady as another aftershock rolls through. Eventually, however, radio chatter clears enough that indications of the real situation on the ground become far easier to comprehend.

Two generator buildings flank the main reactor building. The southeast generator has been badly compromised. The liquid waste facility needs to be sealed off and they can't get anybody in to manually handle the shutoff, and remote protocols aren't working, either. There are also at least two teams stuck in a lower level when the quake trapped them behind one of the valve breaches. The northwest is hanging on, but chatter indicates there's concern about the linkages between the secondary pumps and the main generator station there.

The rod control mechanisms in the main reactor are still jammed. The primary pump motor is overheating and the heat exchanger is in danger of exploding. They're probably no more than 5 minutes away from total meltdown.

On the bright side, reactor three has been shut down smoothly. NYC might be a little dimmer, tonight, but at least it's still standing.

Bruce Banner has Talia along with him as he makes his way up to the control room by any means necessary, keeping up with the situation by radio and barking instructions as needed. He's actually comfortable, oddly, getting to be a nuclear scientist, doing what he was trained to do instead of trying to figure out how to sneak over the Mexican border without a passport or hacking into the local ATM machine so he has enough money for dinner.

"Roger, Wonder Man. I'll check on the timing." Clicking the radio off, Barton looks to one of the engineers that is presumably standing with him, on the safe side of the facility. (Not that there is anywhere actually -safe- in terms of a meltdown of a nuclear facility.) "Give me timing. Five minutes? Ten? If we had a nice, leisurely half hour, that'd be nice." But he's pretty sure that it isn't the case.

Not willing to come back with a 'non answer', Barton clicks on again and offers, "Depends on how hot the rods are and that whole 'water' thing. Base number that the techs are throwing around is about five minutes to meltdown."

"Nocturne?" Ray-gun. How many other blue, fuzzy, be-tailed young women are there out there? Probably not a lot, he's willing to guess. "Okay. You be careful."

Now, as Huntress comes live, Barton glances at the engineers again. "Head count. How many are in—" Beat. "Huntress, you may meet up with a rescue team headed for the southeast generator building. Lower level. Two teams trapped behind a valve breach thanks to the tremors." Actually…

"Wonder Man, meet up with Huntress to get to the liquid waste facility to handle the shutoff." Chances are good that the rod control stuff? Dr. Banner has that.

With the radio clicked off, Barton takes a moment to take a deep breath and mumble, "This better work."

Rod control mechanisms. Right. People trapped. Wrong. Five minutes. Simon was going the other direction from Huntress, as far as he knows, looking for whatever was leaking high-energy enough to see by. There's a bent steam pipe, a girder. A honking BIG girder.
"Wonder Man here. I'm at what looks like a support member for the cooling rod assembly, it looks like it's vibrating, there's a broken pipe here. I'm going to try the applied kinetic fix. The energy leak I was seeing is coming from a crack in the wall here. Pray I don't make it worse."
He starts thumping his fist on the girder. Not just thumping. THUMPING. If this is connected to the control rod box, and hope to Karma it is, then it might un-jam things. wham WHAM WHAM WHAM WHAM.
"Any readings, Dr. Banner? Over."

Talia is in over her head. Even if she could regain the full compliment of her powers, they're all of fairly limited use in a situation like this. What she can still provide is an extra set of eyes and the ability of being able to crawl just about anywhere, so long as she can physically fit along the way. If they didn't have Wonder Man along to help then she'd really question if they could turn the tides on this one.

Oh yeah! And she can offer moral support. That's something she's pretty darned good at. "Glad to have you all on board here. We'll get through this!" Fingers so completely, totally crossed… For the moment, whatever Banner needs, Banner gets. Assuming she's able to get it for him. Radioactive stuff, not so friendly!

"Right. On our way!"

Huntress's escorts start heading in the right direction upon Hawkeye's orders and eventually they reach where the others are trying to save those trapped. "Hey, we're here to help," she announces while holding up her hands, once more displaying her willingness to not act threateningly. She waits for some kind of plan before moving; without powers she can't lift anything heavy but hopefully they'll all succeed in getting those pinned to safety if they work together.

It's probably not so much karma as it is good ol' Murphy taking a smoke break. The aftershocks have… abruptly stopped, actually. Almost mid-tremor. That last one doesn't have the rolling wave pattern of the others. More a swell and then… well, it's really just like someone hit the off switch.

Without the added vibrations, however, William's percussive maintenance hits home. There's a shift. A groan. An internalized, stuttering klang, as hundreds of coolant rods shift like one of those kitschy pin art impression blocks being reset. But, they don't quite fall. It may require a different angle.

Valves still hiss, however. That pressure has still got to be relieved to avoid a full meltdown, however, if the rods can be shifted home, well, they'll buy some time, anyway. Time, maybe, to seal off the liquid waste plant.

The challenge the crew Huntress faces is the challenge of redirecting the steam and draining the boiling water on the floor. Heat shielding is key. That, or finding an alternate route in. Still, they work, and it's likely not terribly long before an attempt to cross the hot zone can be made to start pulling people out from behind the bulkheads sheltering them.

Bruce Banner finally reaches the control room as Simon gets the cooling rods in place, "Oh, look, he actually did it. Huh. Smarter than he looks," he says. He reaches into his pocket and pulls out a cigarette, lighting one in flagrant defiance of the no smoking sign as he peers at a few different gauges, "Okay, looks like we've at least got a start on keeping this thing under control. That or I'm reading these wrong and we're all going to die. But I'm not. So we're not. So, someone get me a twinkie out of the vending machine and I'll see if I can't recalibrate this bitch so it'll at least stay stable until the inspectors come and shut this rustbucket down for good."

That thumping? Can be heard out here with the techs. Clint turns away so they don't catch him wincing at the sound, and maybe, just maybe, that's a little bit of a 'hoo boy, we're gonna die' posture? Staring at the radio, he's waiting for Banner to come back with a 'Yay, all fixed' so they can get the hell home and let the County guys deal with the PR. (As it is, SHIELD's got that started. County guys just need to finish it.) Of -course- that's not going to be forthcoming.

Huntress' approach on those trapped gains a nod (that she obviously can't see), and on the radio, "We're down under the four minute mark. Grab them and move when you can."

The stress of the scene before him at the facility really doesn't allow him to take huge notice of the tremors, or the fact that they've ceased. Little preoccupied out here, what with the moving of personnel, the flashing lights that are just now showing up (as well as news vans!).

"Banner, I'm not sure Twinkies will really survive nuclear fallout. I think it's just one of those urban tales. Unless roaches need something to eat." Then, all bets are off.

Noticing that one, two people are staring at him after the comment, Barton clicks the radio off and turns to stare back at them with a 'Yes?' expression.

"Good job, guys."

ALMOST!! SO CLOSE!! Simon leans against the wall in disgust. Sees. Through. The Wall. Dimly. But enough, to tell what's happening on the other side. Too bad his vision depends on other sources of radiation. But there's lots of it in there, and he has a leak to peek through, so he does. He also hears something … snarky … from somewhere else. He smiles. So very much like a certain director. He keys the radio.
"I heard that, Dr. Banner. So, the control rods are still stuck, I can't hit them right to get them to drop. If you can give 'em a tap from 30 degrees left of the centerline, they should drop. And I mean a tap, normal-person. I'm going to help with the cooling pump now, over."
There's a CRACK as he breaks the sound barrier running back to where Huntress is dealing with impedimentation.
"What do you want me to lift, Ma'am?"

The tremors have stopped..! And, perhaps even more shockingly, the coolant rods suddenly fall into place. ..Mostly. Talia's still out of her league but she tends to have a pretty decent grasp of how things are supposed to fit together, and right now? She's seeing a gap. A gap which does not appear as though it should belong there. Sledgehammers are great, don't get her wrong there, but sometimes a little wiggling is all a person, or a nuclear reactor, needs.

She's willing to run with the educated guess here. "Hold up guys, round pegs in square holes syndrome. I think I can do this - thirty degrees left? You got it."

Jump to the ceiling (GAH Wonder Man sonic boom!), crawl closer to the cooling rods, find somewhere to crouch while inverted, and give 'er the proverbial 'two' to Wonder Man's 'one-two punch,' Hex-Bolt style. It's concussive energy, punching. If those rods can put up with Wonder Man's treatment then there's no reason for them to fall apart from what she can dish out.

Huntress growls. "Use whatever is thick and metal to redirect the steam while we get them out…" It won't be a lot of time as the metal will heat up in no time flat, this something she knows and spurs her into a flurry of activity.

The rescuers are directed by her even as she rushes forward to start yanking people out, those who are able to walk without aid told to help those who might be injured. "Come on, let's go…" She waits until everyone's ready and on their way before she heads off herself, the first one in and the last one out.

"We're on our way," she eventually announces once she thinks to, letting Hawkeye and the others know they're heading out.

As Talia's hex-bolts do the trick. The rods finally slam home, sinking into the reactor fully. Though it will take time for them to really work, with the addition of the neutron absorbing liquid released by a secondary system also coaxed into proper operation by the rods finally lowering, the greatest danger has passed. Of course, this plant won't be reoperationable anytime soon. Guess the governor gets his wish, after all.

With the immediate crisis passed, the regular teams are able to seal off the liquid waste plant, and the other rescuers benefit from Huntress' and Williams' additional aid. By the time County is telling the press everything's under control, there's probably just enough time for those that don't want extra attention to slip away into the softly glowing night.

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