On the Side of Angels

August 20 2014: The Angelus does not like 'balance'… it's not gonna like quite a few things when this is done.

Cony Island

A section of boardwalk with a number of shops, amusements and street food vendors. And Angelus Warriors… lots of those.



  • Angelus Warriors
  • K'nert

Mood Music:
[* None]

It's a warm, late summer night on Coney Island, and though it's quieter here since Hurricane Sandy, people are starting to come back again. It means it's a good place for the Brooklyn natives to come out on a weeknight and pretend they aren't on call against things that go bump in the night and threaten the freedom of the planet. So it's no surprise that Sara and Steve would be walking along the boardwalk, sharing a bag of popcorn.

"No, I'm serious," Sara laughs, shaking her head. "It went everywhere. And the techs, of course, were on overtime for the next three weeks. I'm not kidding, if you ever want to run a drug operation and buy your lawyer some time to figure things out before you go to trial, run your coke ring out of a bakery."


"Are you sure they weren't on overtime because of some excess energy?" Steve asks with a grin, taking a piece of popcorn from the bag, flicking it into the air with his thumb and tilting his head slightly to catch it. "Though I don't envy them having to sort through that mess."


Coney Island… you know the last time Jericho went some place like this he got shot in the shoulder and nearly bled out. Granted… it was Gotham. Still he's got a fairly healthy distrust of these kinds of places. Of course that could be said of most people too, yet here he is. He'd taken a break and in that time the world had caught up to him with a vengeance. Time to get out ahead. He's getting really weird whispers of network traffic out here. It's almost ghostly. Just on the edges of his digital awareness. Jeri's not at all sure that it's HYDRA related, mostly he's curious. Curiosity may have killed the cat, but it's also responsible for some of his most useful (if troublesome) discoveries.

At the moment he's just walking through the crowd, concentrating on his HUD while he puts a pretty good show of milling about. Nothing to see here, just part of the backgro-Wait, those voices sound familiar. The hacker turns to look behind him. Is that….?


Coney Island. The place is a myth, a legend to Jim Reha, the sort of thing his mother told him about when he was much younger. She'd mention the class trip her school took to New York when she was young, and how they went to the United Nations and saw the Intrepid and all the other neat things that were available in New York at the time. So it is a bit of an homage, then, for him to check it out, especially after the way the past week or so has been going.

On the plus side, he's gotten two decent gigs. One through a recycling plant, the other through no less than Stark Industries. So even with hints of bad things on the horizon, overall, things are pretty much looking up. Yes. Even with the Mad God of Mischief about, and the strange new drug that a certain doctor is looking into… things are looking up. He tries not to think too long and hard about HOW MUCH they are looking up, because he's savvy enough to realize that's just inviting trouble.

He's currently leaning against a railing watching the world go by…


"I make no such claims," Sara grins, popping a few kernels into her own mouth. "Evidence collection was…complicated. We got the guys in the end, though." The crowds thin out a bit as they get further from the main areas of the amusement park, letting the conversation carry through the night air. Sara doesn't seem to have noticed Jericho yet. "And yet, now I look back…"

While the crowds on the boardwalk have thinned, up above Coney Island, invisible to the mortal eye, another host gathers. To any who could see them, they'd look almost…heavenly. With a Guillermo del Toro twist, given that some of them have multiple eyes, or strange helms, or something else that isn't entirely…human. "There," a female figure among them murmurs to the rest. "The Balance."


"Having your doubts?" Steve chuckles, flicking up a piece of popcorn once again but this time sending it on an upward arc towards Sara - time to test her reflexes. He lifts his eyes to look at it, bit spying anything amiss in the sky - why would he even be looking for that? "If you don't mind, I want to stop by that electronics store before it closes … I want to buy one of those tablet computers."


Jericho hasn't approached Sara or Steve yet. Now that he's aware of their presence, though, he's tracking them. The code whispers he's chasing though… those are unusual. They don't look like anything he's ever seen, and the feel of them… it's starting to remind him of something but he doesn't quite know what yet.

Something tugs at his pant leg from the shadows near the game stand he's leaning on. K'nert looks up at him and hisses in displeasure, indicating… something above him that he can't see. "What is your problem, K'nert?"


The heavy-set fellow sips on his unsweetened ice tea and contemplates the park as the people start to go home for the evening, and those remaining head for the perceived shelter of the brighter areas. He does not see the entities gathered above, for his senses are amazingly and blessedly mundane. He pulls out his cheap cel-phone and checks it for the time once more, then puts it back with a bit of a shrug. Still plenty of time before he has to catch the trains back to his place.

He glances around his area for anyone else nearby. Being relatively new to town doesn't mean he's going to be an easy mark for any muggers or the like. Spatial awareness is always important.

Sara tilts her head, mouth open to try to catch the popcorn, only to fail utterly. Because while she wouldn't normally be able to see certain things? The Witchblade knows exactly what's up there. "Crap," she says succinctly. Hanging around with Steve must be a good influence. Usually the word of choice would be much…stronger. "Steve, things are about to get super weird, okay?"

Before she can explain further, though, the host of Angelus warriors - for that's what it is - swoops down to make a landing in front of the detective. There are a baker's dozen of them, all light and wings and armor. Enough to make anyone wonder if the end times are nigh.

"Bearer," the lead female greets. "We have searched long for you. Our mistress will be greatly pleased to hear you are found."


"Weird?" Steve asks, his brow furrowing as he glances over his shoulder on the look out for suspicious folks. "How do you mea—"

The sudden arrival of the heavenly creatures causes Steve to not pause but take a step forward. He does not entirely impose himself between Sara and the sudden arrivals, but he is there in case he needs to do so. For his part he remains silent, hands slipping from the pockets of his jacket to rest at his sides.


It's times like these Jericho really hates his life. That, he realizes now, was not a code trace he was chasing. Enochian whispers. Divine beings. They seem to be focusing on Sara at the moment but he's not sure how long his (increasingly stronger) demonic association will go unnoticed. Slowly an automatic sidearm comes out from under his shirt. "Oh tell me that these things react to bullets." He doesn't want to expose his traces here… though he gets the rather distinct feeling that it's inevitable.


The sudden arrival of 'people' in brightness and light makes the ex-retail worker blink a few times. There's a brief compulsion on some level for him to offer some sign of obeisance or submission, but that is quickly discarded as he takes another sip of his tea and starts to walk over as only someone who may have chased shoplifters a decade past could. Fast, a bit clumsily, and completely obvious as to his intention to at least say something.

He holds off on that last bit for the moment, this situation may have further explanation to it, and he's not going to get himself gutted because he picked the fight…


"Like that," Sara sighs to Steve as the host lands, passing him the popcorn. "Look, guys. I'll tell you what I told the last batch. You wouldn't like it if I went over to the dark side. So I'm not coming over to your side, either. It's called the Balance for the reason." She pauses, looking around herself for a civilian head count. "Any chance you're just going to go home and pass that on?"

No such luck, Sara. As she declines, there's a hiss of metal against metal as each of the host draws their own weapons. "You will come," the leader says. "Or you will die, and we will find a Bearer who can see the power of the Light."

"Yeah," Sara grimaces, as the Witchblade climbs up her right arm, armor forming seemingly out of nowhere. "I kind of thought you'd feel that way."


"Get to cover." Jericho mutters to K'nert as he aims his weapon at the closest of the baddies. Fights are so much easier to win when your enemy does not yet know they have begun. The moment his sight line is clear, and with people scattering everywhere that doesn't take long at all, he opens fire. It's not fair, no, but that's how he stays alive. He's only getting the one magazine anyway. By that point he's no doubt he'll be forced to use more extreme measures.


"I'm with you," Steve murmurs back to Sara, squaring his shoulders and clenching his fists before him. He is without his uniform and his shield, but that doesn't slow him or even give him a moment of pause. As the creatures draw their weapons, he waits for an attack.


Jim's response to the impending throw-down is to first utter some extreme profanities that are clearly… not on the Heaven-approved list.

Then the Witchblade starts to appear and he almost throws himself between two stands, almost like he wasn't expecting that reaction. The yelp of surprise he makes is a pleasant counter-point to the profanity of earlier, even as things get a bit weird where he ends up….


As the Witchblade appears, the Angelus host charges toward those who dare to stand against them. Most of them head for Sara, but even they have to respect the laws of space. While half a dozen of the warriors converge on Sara and the Witchblade, there are three each for Jericho and Steve, glowing blades flashing in the dark of the night. Jim has been lucky enough to escape their notice so far, though one standing sentry seems to have caught movement where we went to hide.

Sara has apparently picked up some new moves lately. As the group of Angelus warriors converges on her, she starts to move swiftly through a series of blocks and parries, slicing aggressively at wings and blades.


Steve does not hesitate as the three warriors charge at him, a tight fist driven into the jaw of the first one as his elbow cocks back to strike the second comer similarly. His knee comes up in an effort to meet the last one's solar plexus, his body already weaving to one side to evade bladed retaliation. Even as he fights, his attention seems partly focused on Sara and those who engaged her.


The pistol runs dry without any notable effect on the angelic beings. Well, it was worth a shot.

"Turnabout's fair play, eh Sara?" Jericho calls out as his traces flush blue. He's not sure Sara or Steve know he's here but they might as well so that they don't try witchblading or otherwise hitting him. Feedback burns aren't fun.

The blue werewolf construct springs into being around him just in time for him to take the rush. A nearby cotton candy cart becomes a missile moments later, then digital claws sweep out, honed impossibly sharp. He advances, trying to keep the immortal warriors wrong footed and off balance.

He very sincerely hopes those swords don't just slice his power fields like butter.


There are strange twisting and turning sounds from between the stands, as Jim is pushed aside by his avianoid 'partner'. Limbs grow, skin darkens, and wings spring forth, even as obsidian talons extend from the hands of whatever the thing is. It stands up, wing-tips clearly visible over the tops of the stands even as it strides forth, stretching every limb as if waking up from a long nap.

"Stand down. This one sees folly in one's actions. Do NOT pursue this course further. Only warning."

That seems to be directed at the brighter types who are being most aggressive in their actions. Even with that warning, it takes another stride forward towards the one that was left on 'overwatch' and takes a martial stance.

"There is still hope for one if one stands down and acknowledges one's faults."

Crazy Buddha Bird.


"Jericho, fancy meeting you here!" Sara calls toward the glowing wolf. "Super fun, right?" A twist of her wrist takes the entrails right out of one warrior, and she follows the movement to one knee, taking a leg out from under another. The gunfire isn't exactly ineffective. Bullets put holes in the Angelus warriors, and there's some sort of blood or ichor that comes from the wounds. It even slows them down. It just doesn't…actually stop them. For long.

The glowing traces, on the other hand? Well, they say you can't defend against yourself, and apparently that's true for these warriors of the Light. The first one to meet Jericho's claws cries out in surprised pain, bleeding Light itself.

Steve's opponents slow their attacks in surprise when the super soldier makes his first blows, unused to such resistance from "mere mortals." A bulkier male takes a slice at Steve, only to find the Captain just…isn't where he thought he'd be.

The watch-warrior tilts her head as the bird-creature steps out from behind the stands, considering. "This is no business of yours, bird," she warns in turn.


Steve does not seem to be in either a joking or a bargaining mood. As far as he's concerned, he's in combat now and that will only be over when these angel creatures are either beaten or withdraw. The swing of the sword would have cleaved him in twain if he hadn't moved, and he immediately recognizes the threat of the burly warrior. Both hands shoot out, one grabbing at the warrior's wrist and another pressing against his elbow. He doesn't pull his punches, putting every ounce of his super soldier strength into pushing that elbow the way it shouldn't go with a look of grim determination.


Jericho dances back. Claws work. This is a good thing. He catches a sword blade on the palm. Feedback arcs back into him. Ouch. Claws come down again while the next nearest Angelus warrior discovers that the jaws on his construct armor are… quite functional. He's trying to force his way closer to Sara and Steve. Strength in numbers is a thing.

"So is this what it feels like being you around me most of the time?" Snark. It's what Jericho does when he's worried. Which he is. K'nert leaps out of the shadows, clinging to the neck of the bleeding one and ripping at it with vicious delight."


"Any who seek to disrupt the world's defense are this one's business. This one apologizes for the actions this one must take in the protection of all for the Greater Good of all. Surely one understands?"

Whether or not the watch-warrior does, the avianoid attempts to reach into her, either to claw her or her armor and send her flying away from the combat for the moment. It is attempting to be merciful in its efforts. If that is successful, it will take another stride forward.

"Children of Heaven, go home. One's cause is foolish, one's efforts vain. Please gain Enlightenment."


"Pretty much, yeah," Sara answers Jericho. He's put his three down (though K'nert is finishing number three off at the moment), and Sara's taken out three of her own. Steve's leverage does exactly what it was meant to, and there's a mighty crack as the burly warrior's elbow snaps into reverse. Ouch.

The watch-warrior looks as though she might have some objection to being told to back off, refusing to turn away from Corvinus' attack. It's a bad decision, because when the claws dig in, they cut through the Angelus armor like butter. The warrior has just enough time to look surprised before her wings still, sending her tumbling to the boardwalk.

Three warriors remain circled around Sara, while two others have stepped back to give Steve a little more space and respect after that last move. "Steve, catch!" Sara calls, crouching enough to pull her reserve piece - a snub-nosed revolver - from her ankle and toss it to the captain. "Head shot should do-"

In the moment of distraction, one of the warriors around her manages to slash its blade down her back, a sword of light screaming against the Witchblade and leaving a gash in its wake.


Steve catches the gun, his features momentarily grim. He doesn't like the use of firearms but when they're warranted? Well, they're warranted. But instead of leveling it on the two warriors still near to him, his attention turns immediately to the one hacking at Sara with its blade.

"Duck!" He calls out to her, partly hoping she'll hear him but nevertheless aiming high enough to most likely miss her and shooting the revolver at Sara's attacker.


Jericho snarls and bounds over next to Steve. If one squints, Jericho is visible inside the field of light, floating about a foot off the ground. The wolf-thing stands about seven and a half feet tall, a bit taller than Steve, so what is reach over him to clamp a massive, clawed hand down on one of the wings of the remaining warriors and yanks it over to clear a path for the Cap. Behind Cap there's a wet tearing sound as the soldier turned hacker makes sure that it never gets to use those wings again.


There is no time to mourn the loss of anyone in such close-quarters situations. The avianoid appraises the remaining opponents and leaps upwards, aiming to land behind the two in front of the man armed with a gun. Gently, it reaches out to back-hand slap both of them on the back of the head gently to get their attention. Gently, of course, may be a matter of perception, as the bird-thing is decently strong. Still, it isn't trying to decapitate them as much as knock some sense into them and get their attention.

"Children. Fly home. Now."


Two more down. The Angelus warrior lands the blow down Sara's back, bringing her to one knee, but takes a slug to the head from Steve, crumpling on the ground next to her. And Jericho's foe? Well. The wings are apparently important. One more stands by Steve, two are left by Sara, and Corvinus gets one of each.

"Retreat!" the last warrior not under attack orders, taking to the air. "We shall return, Bearer!" it threatens, and there's a cacophony of flapping as the two near the bird-warrior make their retreat as well. As they leave, and the darkness of the night sinks over the scene, what remains of the fallen warriors simply…dissipates, shimmering into nothing.

Sara stays on one knee, and while the sword in her hand disappears, the rent armor down her back doesn't. "So, yeah," she says through a wince. "Like I said, weird."


Steve pays little mind to their allies or the disappearing Angelus warriors, only having eyes for Sara in the moment. He flicks the safety on the revolver and tucks it into his belt, crossing the distance towards Sara and crouching down alongside her. He looks her over carefully, assessing the wounds with the keen eye of a battlefield medic.

"Come on, I'm taking you to a doctor."


The humming blue power field next to Steve fades, not that he's paying attention, and Jericho drops lightly to his feet, circuit traces covering most of his body, shining through his shirt. He rams a fresh magazine home into his gun and after satisfying himself that there's no further immanent danger, holsters it. K'nert bounds over and jumps up onto Steve's shoulder, hissing at Jericho while he watches Sara.

"If he smacks you it's not my fault. Sara, are you okay?" He can see the tear in the armor and he's keeping a wary eye on the one remaining avian thing that… isn't yet attacking them.


The avianoid lets out what could be best described as a sigh.

"At least they can have sense brought to them, even if it is a traumatic process." It pauses for a moment as it appraises the other three warily.

"Does one need to be brought to medical assistance?", it offers to Sara, "This one could attempt to fly one to a local 'hospital'?" It squints at Steve as he makes the battlefield assessment, then over at Jericho before turning its attention to Sara once more.

"Despite appearances this one is not hostile and seeks not to harm the defenders of this world. Please allow this one to render assistance?"


"It's okay," Sara waves a hand to the others, eyes closing as she tries to focus on whatever it is that makes the Witchblade heal her. Slowly, the material down her back knits itself together first, then starts to do the same for Sara. "Give it a few minutes, I'll be good enough to go." She looks up, taking a head count. "Everyone o-" Catching sight of Corvinus, she blinks. "Uh. Hi."


Steve rests a hand on Sara's shoulder, seeming oblivious to the strange bird creature and Jericho nearby. He cranes his head to watch the wound knit shut, checking for anything else that might need medical attention. The … thing perched on his shoulder gets only a brief glance before he turns back to the Bearer, watching carefully.


Jericho tenses a little when Corvinus flaps closer but stands down when Sara doesn't look overly concerned. "You've got a self heal?" That's a relief. He's gotten her banged up a few times and it'd make him feel a lot worse knowing she couldn't recover from it. Jericho himself as a good sized burn on his right hand and arm. Angels apparently sword pretty dang hard.

"So… this was unexpected? Also who are you?" That last to Corvinus.


The birdly being tilts its head and watches Sara and her focused concentration. "Ah. One has on-board recovery procedures in play. Outstanding. This one is glad to not have to deal with Emergency Room bureaucracy." Was that a hint of snark?

"Hello there. This one apologizes for interrupting one's surprise educational melee display, as it appeared one was overmatched, and others were at risk as well." It bobs its head eagerly a few times.

As almost an afterthought it lets the talons retract fully. "This one apologizes. Combat is not this one's standard mode of operation." The tone is apologetic as it offers an answer to Jericho.

"This one is The Corvinus."


"Nope, no need to apologize," Sara assures Corvinus, reaching up to carefully push a hand through her hair. "And it's not super reliable, or perfect," she adds to Jericho. "Angelo noticed the other day. But it at least keeps me on my feet. Speaking of." She holds a hand out to Steve, starting to push herself up as the Witchblade retracts. With it gone, her shirt is still torn down the back, but the wound beneath, instead of angry and bloody, is reduced to a long cut. It no doubt hurts, but with a day or two of butterfly bandages, it won't need much more attention. "Thanks, Jericho. Wasn't expected, but wasn't the first time either. And thank you, Corvinus," she nods politely to the bird. "You were just what we needed, I think."


Steve shucks his jacket and drapes it over Sara's shoulders as she stands up, only now glancing to Jericho and Corvinus with a curt nod of his head. "It's good you were here. You did good work."


Jericho shrugs, one shoulder. "You've done me a few good turns as I recall, Sara, and you didn't have to. It was my pleasure."

Steve gets a smile and a nod. Now that he's closer and not encased in glowing armor, Sara and Steve may both note that his previously mostly grey amber banded eyes are now mostly amber grey banded eyes. And there's not a whole lot of grey left.


"Corvinus, mmmm?" He steps back to politely give the bird thing some room. "You from their end of the block?" He nods his head in the direction the Angelus warriors fled.


Corvinus bobs its head a few times, then bows deeply, flaring its wings wide.

"At the sake of sounding trite to one, it was the least this one could do to aid those who would defend this world against enemies current and future. This one would humbly submit that all involved in this situation did gain some form of education on this day." That tone is sober, almost spiritual, and offered to the three others present.

"This one is familiar with some of the legendry but that is more the purview of this one's partner. This one is from a different block in a different time. Still. Soldiers need to learn restraint when engaged in matters above their 'pay-grade'."


Sara smiles faintly toward Corvinus, shaking her head. "Sounds good. I think I'm going to go take care of this, though. You all have a good night, okay?" As Steve drapes his jacket over her shoulders, she reaches out to keep his arm there, too. Whether it's out of affection or a need for support? Well, that's less clear. But whatever the case, it seems she's done for the evening. Time to go lick her wounds. And figure out what brought the Angelus to town.

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