No Coup For You

Summary:
June 18, 2014: An X-Team is dispatched to the DRC to prevent a mutant takeover, and extract the mutants in question

Democratic Republic of Congo

A jungle - too many trees, too many bugs, only one road.


Characters

NPCs

  • Le Protegent - a six-person revolution

Mood Music:
[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l_F9KY3g2ek]


Cyclops Log 2014-06-18

On the Professor's recommendation I've taken to writing my thoughts in a journal available to whatever range of X-men come after me. Should the worst happen, I wouldn't be able to share my thought processes with the rest of the group. The Professor has all sorts of contingency plans, and it's probably a smart idea.

Two days ago we became aware of a splinter group in the hills of the Democratic Republic of Congo; a band of mutants hell bent on taking over their government and enslaving their oppressors for years or mistreatment. Part of me believes in justice, but in the handful of villages these mutants have come across there has been an insatiable amount of violence and terror. This isn't justice.

According to the Professor, the half dozen mutants have made their way towards the village of Nabakala, deep in the jungles of the middle of the nation. The terrain is hellacious, but we have the element of surprise. As strong as they are, they're certainly no match for Xavier and a quarter hour time of concentration.

We set course this morning.

_ _ _ _

By the time the X-men reach the outskirts of the town, they have no idea when or where the group of Mutants calling themselves "Le Protegent" or the Protectorate in English. There's a teleporter, two bricks, a geological being of some sort, a minor healer, and someone who uses ranged weapon attacks. As the X-men take their places in the dense jungle, there's nothing to do but wait.

*

Seeing as they're in the jungle, 'Beast' takes a perch in one of the trees, having scaled it quite easily. He's crouched on one of the branches and might blend in with the local fauna if it wasn't for the fact that bright blue isn't a color that is created organically in nature. His comm is in his ear as he prepares to either make note of movement or follow orders.

*

"You're not ready for this." Cal tells Nancy. "But you can see how your power will be useful here. Even if they're our own, and have been mistreated, there's no excuse for terrorizing villagers. If we can subdue them and get them away from here, we might have a chance to reform them." And Nancy is the best way to keep them subdued. "Do your best to stay under cover but use your best judgement if you think you need to move." Needless to sat, he's staying well back from Nancy. Once he's cautioned her, he sends his thoughts outward, looking for minds that fit the bill.

*

Doug is busy taking advantage of the GPS and the satellites system using a tablet. Hacking into them was one thing - trying to find something useful in the jungle was another. At least he could relay on information while keeping the party in contact with each other and track where they were in the meantime. Still, looking for out-of-the-ordinary sights using tracking satellites in a remote area? He'd have to hope he found a really nosy spy satellite…

And given everything, his best bet was to stick close to Scott, the better to pass on information quickly as well as having his ass covered.

"Still scanning…" he replies absentmindedly.

*

Amara, at least, is more or less at home in the jungle. Even if she isn't particularly fond of the bugs and creepy crawlies that come with it. She's settled in cross-legged on the ground in a spot that provides some cover while they wait, both hands pressed to the ground and her eyes half-closed as she tries to sense any large-scale movement through the earth itself.

*

Jacky, sorry, 'Diamond', is a little bit nervous. OK, a lot nervous. This is his first real mission, despite having had the combat-style training in sims, and he knows his role is to just 'feel out' where the enemy is likely to be, and if luck provides it, have a 'pre-flash' before they attack, if they do. But so far, despite concentrating, his ESP just says 'nobody knows we're here yet.'
He hopes that remains the case.

*

Looking to Calvin, Nancy nods her head. This is so different from her training before. She feels more vulnerable without a gun at her side, but this is not how these people do things. She takes a deep breath, ready to follow orders. She looks over to Doug and smiles with a shrug. Without even thinking about it, she grabs a lollipop. Why does her sweet tooth always hit at the worst possible time?

*

Cyclops remains stoic, looking through the trees well off the most likely trail the mutants would take. It is the most direct route after all.

"The one that worries me most would be the teleporter," he says idly. "If we can subdue them, we should be alright. Don't rush in to anything."

Deep within the jungle there's a slight 'Pthhhh' sound intermittently, and Cyclops turns to the others and motions towards the others to get them to quiet down. Down in the ravine the two bricks giants, presumably relatives, trudge along with their rocky exteriors. Behind them, another normal looking mutant follows along. The other three are nowhere to be found.

*

Beast holds a hand up as well when he hears something that could be teleportation. He knows what Kurt's power sounds like…wouldn't another teleporter also have a sound? At the very least, air and matter are being displaced. It can't really be silent. Golden eyes look about intently and his ears are perked up as he strains to hear something that might help. From his vantage point, he sees those in the ravine, "Two large brick guys and one more in the ravine. That's only three…" it's practically a growl as he speaks low.

*

Cal doesn't say anything but he nods at what Scott says. Teleporters can be a problem. He certainly enjoys being one to others. As others point out the ones in the ravine, he just nods as he continues to scan the area. Then "I'm picking up one more mind in the distance. Far enough away he might not be part of this group." he says quietly.

"So the trick is to get Nancy close enough to the teleporter so that he can't twink away," Doug observes, continuing to check his tablet for a better tracking view. "Why not just have Storm use her powers to both confuse the hell out of him and to get Nancy in position?"

*

"I can open the ground up under the big ones when you need it," Magma speaks quietly into her own comm. "Though not without going up in flames." She shifts slightly amid the foliage, moving to a kneeling position where she can get up more quickly if she needs to. "There's a reason there's already a ravine there."

*

"We have surprise. So far," Jacky notes, not whispering but not speaking louder than a mutter. He stays in three-quarter diamond-form; his telepathy is too weak to be useful at the moment, and it's better to have the protection.

*

Squatting behind the thick bushes, Nancy tries to concentrate on that feeling of pulling in her aura. She slows her breathing as she keeps herself calm, not wanting to upset the abilities of the people she's with. The white stick bobs from side to side in her mouth. She listens to the others, arching a brow when Doug mentions Storm moving her into position. She keeps her mouth closed, her usual brand of snark kept to herself. It wouldn't help and therefore would only hinder.

*

"A good suggestion, Cypher," Storm's voice comes in over the comms, even and measured as always. The woman to whom the voice belongs is above the rest of the group, hidden in cloud cover. "Waiting on your orders, Cyclops. There's already natural fog in the east I can shift the winds to move in easily enough without anything looking terribly suspicious."

*

"Not a bad idea, Cypher," Cyclops murmurs into his communicator. "I imagine whoever it was would just teleport away."

Cyclops thinks for a moment, "Alright, here's the play: Diamond I need you to get a bead on that teleporter, wherever he is. Link up with Mimic and do whatever it is that you guys do to get on him. Once you nail him down, he's Mimic's responsibility. Magma, if they've got a person with range we might need you to go the nuclear route and start with the burning of the forest. Before that Storm is going to whip up some wind down there and see if we can get the snake out of his den. Hank and I will hit the bricks with everything we got, while Storm goes after the straggler. Beast and I will be out in the open, so if we get ambushed, some backup would be appreciated. Cypher, you're doing the talking once we get one of them captured. If Mimic or Diamond can get you into their heads, you might be able to translate their communications."

"Nancy? Stay put. Stay safe. And watch."

Cyclops moves into position and begins sneaking down the ravine towards the trio on his stomach.

*

"I thought she was staying back and observing," Beast points out in regards to Nancy. "She hasn't been properly trained…I would say, use her as our last resort, but if anything, we can try to parlay with them first." Since surely Doug can speak the language if he, himself, cannot. At least he and Scott are on the same page regarding Nancy.

As Cyclops gives the play, he frowns, "I would suggest not burning the forest. You could destroy the delicate ecology here." There is another sigh as he's told he'll be attacking brick. "What did I ever do to you, Scott?" But he begins to swing out towards the ravine.

*

Cal nods then glances at Diamond and establishes mental contact with him. < The mind I touched is over that way. > and he relays that impression. It was just a light touch in case one of the targets has unnoted telepathic abilities. < If you can point out any others, let me know. > He continues to scan, looking closer and for minds that might be shielded. If they are, hopefully they'll be weaker than his own. "Remind me to get some tasers for you, Nancy. I could port the rock guys over to you and you could stun them while they were surprised to suddenly have no power. One or two could guard you with tasers as well."

*

"Aye aye, sir. Too bad we can't get Calvin closer to grab the teleportation power so you can hit them early."

Sticking close to Scott, Doug does one final check with a satellite to make sure he had the idea of the lay of the land. Nothing to complicate matters, right?

*

"I'm quite capable of stopping a ranged attack without setting the entire jungle ablaze," Magma assures Beast. "Besides, occasional fires are good for an ecosystem." As she starts to gather her power, flickers of flame start to dance around her hands and through her hair.

*

Nancy nods in response. Oh yeah, can't hear nods. "Stay put. Stay safe. Watch," she repeats, the soft clicking of the hard candy in her mouth as she talks. She looks upwards towards the trees as she hears Hank, flipping him the bird. Not trained? Partisan would be insulted. But, she knows what he means all the same. Not trained to do things the way these people do. And really, she did tell Partisan that she wasn't up for that style of attack anyway. "Taser would be nice. Feeling pretty naked here. And not in the good way." Damn, smartass comments always sneaking out.

*

Jacky's head isn't pure diamond — he's dropped to about 50 percent for better sensitivity, or he'd be unable to hear Mimic — but the 'push' lets him feel the aura of the third, and reaching that far for the vibe is almost a headache. Almost. He gasps.

"Can't tell for sure, straggler could be porter or they just touched. Cypher, can I look at that map?"

Because the map, live from the satellite, is a sort of symbolic short-cut, and he can get vibes off it better. He looks at the tablet, trying to feel the vibes.

*

"I both echo and appreciate your concern for the ecosystem, Beast," says Storm. "And assure you I can keep any fires Magma may set under control," she adds. The humidity in the area increases quite a bit, as does the wind, in response to her commands. Apologies to everyone's hair (especially Hank's). Such is the risk of a jungle mission.

Heavy fog begins to coil around Nancy, giving her with better cover, provided she stays low to the ground. Storm isn't going to risk blinding the young trainee- she'll still be able to keep an eye on things, but between foliage and fog, staying hidden shouldn't be a problem, unless she gets too jumpy.

Things begin to happen so fast.

Once in position, Cyclops lets out an optic blast from his visor which staggers the first large mutant back. Up close it's clear that while he's a classic 'brick', a rock is much more apropos. While the first begins falling backwards, his brother begins to bum-rush Cyclops who puts his faith in his good friend Hank that he won't be demolished on site.

The attack flushes out the sniper, who begins to send shots towards the origin of the skirmish. The fog, combined with the difficulty of the shot through cover means that Cyclops hasn't been hit. Not yet.

When Beast approaches, he'll be heading towards the fray one moment, and then mysteriously amongst a pffffft, he'll end up about 100 yards away in the dense jungle, far away from the battle at hand.

Cyclops gets bumrushed by the brick brother, waiting for assistance that isn't able to come. The mutant catches the X-man in the chest and buries him into the ground in a vicious tackle reminiscent of a rugby player.

The man straggling behind them yells out for them to attack-a little too late-with words decipherable only by Cypher.

While this doesn't mean much good news in the way for Beast and Cyclops, most of the others are available and still have the element of surprise. Good thing too, because Cyclops likely won't be able to take another one of those shots.

*

"He's going to owe me big…" Beast murmurs as he begins to rush towards the other brick giant. When he suddenly reappears, a distance away from the combat. "We have a teleporter!" is growled through the comm. "Someone go help Cyclops and someone keep a bead on me so you can take the teleporter out." He swings through the jungle even as he speaks, "I didn't get a look…could be able to do it at a distance. Possible still has line of sight so keep an eye out."

*

Beast teleporting means just one thing. "That's not good." Cal says and is transforming to metal as he speaks. "Find the teleporter." he tells Diamond. "Think fast, Cyclops." His voice comes over the comm as his telepathy shuts off as soon as he's metal. And then there's simultaneous BLINKs of pink energy as Mimic appears right behind where Cyclops had been standing and Cyclops appears behind the rushing rock mutant. Then pink is replaced by ruby as Mimic blasts the mutant with his optic beams.

"Ok, Jacky…" Doug shows the tablet, keeping an eye on the action. It's when the attack starts that the young blond mutant gets a better look. Swearing in multiple languages occur, almost echoing the foe's. "Move, move move!" And pushing Diamond to where he needs to be, Doug himself shifts to a place where he can get a better look at where the foes are placing on his tablet so that he can shout out warnings.

*

As the battle joins, Magma goes incandescent, glowing bright as flame from her spot in the jungle. She does, as promised, contain herself enough not to start any fires where they aren't needed, but she stands to get a better view of things, seeking out the source of the sniper. "Targeting sniper," she says over the comm, letting her senses sink below the surface of the earth, deep into its molten heart to summon up a jet of magma to burst through the earth's crust near the sniper between him and her teammates, rocking the ground and scattering burning droplets. Shoot through that.

*

Diamond can suddenly 'feel' the teleporter. Female. Moving. Porting constantly, almost a random-walk. So where will she… there? He silently teleports himself to the spot, radiating a mental "STOP THAT!STAY STILL!!" as hard as he can at her vibe. She'll need to actually appear there for it to work, but it feels like the most probable place, and it should stagger her long enough for Mimic to get hold of her. If he's got his link … and nope, he's gone metal, the sense of his presence vanishes.

Adapt and adjust, Jacky. Hope she's stunned for a sec so he can get more into her head.

*

Suddenly it all happens at once. Nancy reminds herself that the "Move," from Doug is not meant for her. She keeps herself low, trying to watch all that is going on. She wishes she could help, but until given the order, she's staying put.

*

Storm has something to say to those would dare to open fire on her team-mates. And that is KRAK-BOOM. The sky grows dark as clouds begin to roll in, and bolts of lightning begin to seek out the metal parts of those sniper rifles (and NOT the metal Cal just turned into, she has better aim than that, thank-you). Her voice comes in static-y and wind-whipped over the comms, "I should have the snipers out of the way momentarily. No visual on the teleporter from above. She's staying below tree cover, if that's of any help." It at least takes 'look waaaaay up' out of the equation, right?

*

Cyclops luckily gets pulled out from under the beast and just behind him. The good news is it puts him right next to the healer. The bad news is that he's prone on the ground. No matter, he does a quick twist and kicks the back of the knee and brings the healer down in one swoop. He grunts and winces, clearly injured from the earlier strike, but far better than he would have been had he taken a crushing blow from Brick #2. Brick #1, meanwhile has regained his footing and roars as he takes a few steps towards Cyclops-the latter gives another blast from his visor, getting the big mutant away from him.

Beast is able to cover large amounts of area very quickly, and thankfully as we'll see below, the teleporter has their hands full. Doug, meanwhile, can see where the sniper is, just as Magma douses the area in, well, liquid hot magma. It doesn't kill the sniper, but it traps him pretty darn well.

The optic blast sent by Mimic carries the second Brick away, clear off his feet and deep into the underbrush off the trail.

Diamond does good work in finally getting the teleporter to stay still. Once he prevents her from moving there is very little she can do to stop him.

Since the sniper isn't actually carrying a gun, but rather shooting sticks and twigs from his hands, the lightning bolts won't be able to disable them. They do, however, find the branch-perch from where he sits. With a crackle the limb gives way and sends the sniper down towards the ground.

Meanwhile, all is quiet back by Nancy. Two quiet. Only a split second before he strikes can she hear his breathing. A mutant covered in dirt and rock reaches out, but as he approaches his mud-hand fades into a human one. It's a bit perplexing, so he won't be able to snap her neck as he had earlier hoped. Not right away anyhow.

*

Seeing that Mimic and Cyclops have the brick mutants well in hand, Beast makes his way back to the centre of the fight. Keen eyes only need a moment to see who has things well in hand — and that's when he catches sight of the dirt-covered mutant approaching Nancy. He makes his way over and pretty much dive-bombs the dirt-mutant, trying to stay away from Nancy's aura and push the one back and away from her so he can take him down.

*

"Holler if you need a hand." Mimic broadcasts, taking a quick scan of as much of the battlefield as he can see. Given the terrain, trees and Storm, it's not much. But he can see the one by Scott down on the ground so he BLINKs over and Gibbs-slaps the healer upside the head ever so lightly so to just knock him out and not take his head off.

Relaying the sniper's location, Doug cheers. "You got him, 'Mara!" he exclaims, before checking on the other locations, and starting to relay pitfalls and other traps where they could be moved towards in order to make things difficult. Know the terrain, Sun Tzu says. And make it work for you.

*

That's one sniper down, and two rock-men causing trouble for Mimic and Cyclops. "Let me know if you need help with the rocks, boys," Magma calls over the comm, turning her attention toward where Nancy is under attack. "Nancy, clear the field!" Thrusting out a hand, she tears open a fissure between Nancy and where Beast fights with the dirt mutant, the force of the tremor enough to push them further apart in hopes of moving Nancy out of range.

Jacky has the teleporter.

"Good girl. Stay in one place. I AM YOUR BEST FRIEND, YOU WANT TO HELP ME," Jacky says, pushing into her mind with his will. Even if she doesn't speak English, the meaning is what gets conveyed. And Oh, he's going to be in Bad Telepath Karma Town later, but for how, he's golden.

"How many of you are there?" Diamond asks, his half-gemstone hand brushing across her face in a friendly caress, his smile reassuring. Because the intel had said six, but maybe there's more in the wings.

*

A rustle of noise behind her and Nancy turns. A hand reaching behind her. She goes to grab the hand, to twist it into a bent arm bar, but instead the man is suddenly gone, rolling in the brush with a Beast who was in and out of her sphere quickly enough that his momentum had him only pink for a short while. She initially wants to go to help Hank but realizes quickly that going to him will be less then helpful. She looks then to the bricks, seeing how the rest of the team is dealing with all of this.

By now, Cyclops and Mimic have taken care of the bricks and the healer. The sniper falls unceremoniously and knocked unconscious by the fall. The teleporter informs Jack that the 6 who are shown are the only 6 who are with the group. Beast rolls around with the geomancer, but easily overcomes him through the surprise attack.

All in all things are drawing to a close. Aside from a broken rib and a scare for the new initiate, it seems the X-men have things pretty well in hand.

Cyclops radios in. "Apprehend each of them and set them close enough to Nancy in the back of the Blackbird to set them impotent. When we get them back to the US, we'll put them in a safe house. Xavier wants to speak with them."

Cyclops winces as he makes his way back up the hill. Damn that hurts. "Thanks for the assist," he says to Mimic.

*

Beast makes sure the geomancer is out before he looks back to the others. At the instructions to gather them up for later interrogation, he lifts the man onto a shoulder and proceeds to fireman-carry him back towards the Blackbird. He does, currently, keep a wide berth of Nancy as he doesn't want to collapse under the other's weight. "A safehouse or lock-up? Shouldn't we speak to them before we hide them?" He then looks to Nancy, "You ok?" and then to Cyclops, "While I'm flattered that you seem to think I can go up against a being made out of brick, I would like to note that, for the record, if you ever ask me to do that again, I may have to kill you…if I survive." He's mostly serious.

"Everyone else all right? We have our medkit in the jet…"

*

"That's what they pay me for." Mimic answers, giving Cyclops a quick grin that includes Beast when he shows up. "He has faith in you. And that was gratifyingly easy. A few military grade zip ties and seats by Nancy and we'll have a pleasant flight home."

*

Placing a hand on the tree near her, Nancy keeps her balance while the fissure separates her from Beast. As she hears Scott's orders, she smirks. Sent to the back of the room with the bad kids. She nods her head, smiling at Hank. "My hero," she teases, but there doesn't seem to be nearly as much venom in her teasing as there usually is. When Mimic mentions zipties, Nancy laughs and pulls a handful out from inside her boots. "Well, at least my trainer taught me something!"

*

When the fight is over, Magma powers down to her usual state, though not before smoothing over the worst of the damage she left behind. "No permanent fires," she announces when she reaches the jet, glancing around to take a head count of her own.

*

"Hey, go sit in the plane with my friends. We're going to take you to a safe place, where you won't be attacked for being mutants," Diamond says to the teleporter. He goes over to where the healer is unconscious, and starts talking to him.

"Wake up. You're safe among friends. You want to help us, we're all your friends," he says with that PUSH behind it. Then, nature should take its course; the healer should WANT to repair all their injuries. On the way home, or once they arrive.

He's trying very hard not to be smug when he gets on the plane himself.

*

Storm settles to the ground, setting the weather patterns back into the more or less the arrangement they should be, give or take a few "fixes" she sees fit (a few villages getting exactly what their crops will need). "Excellent work," she says, as she boards the plane.

*

"You're so dramatic, Hank," Cyclops says with another wince at his broken rib. "You're flying." Once they get settled, "It's a safe house because Xavier asked that they be taken to a safe house. If you don't like it, take it up with him." Instead of his normal seat, Cyclops takes a seat from behind, being in no spot to fly. Besides, he's gotta do some scans and make sure he's alright.


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