Clinical Study

Summary:
October 29 2014: Jericho meets Angelo at the Avenue C Clinic to talk about his neighbors…

Defunct Warehouse

A warehouse left vacant for the past couple of months right next to the Avenue C Clinic


Characters

NPCs

  • Psyborgs

Mood Music:
[* None]


It's been a while but Jericho is right outside the Avenue C clinic. He's… a bit nervous. And the place is making him kind of uncomfortable. Might be just that he hasn't talked to Angelo in a while… or it might be that thing that Illyana mentioned. Well… no time like the present.

He pushes the door open, steps in and walks on over to the PA. Yeah, this is definitely making him uncomfortable. "Hi there. Is Doctor DiLucci available?" This is going to… potentially be awkward…

-

Angelo has a night where he hasn't been (1) catching up, (2) finding himself teleported to the other side of the world to eradicate more Hydra-virus — that shit CANNOT be left to just naturally go away — and (3) wandering around America at random to do … some random thing or other … like confusing the Joker or the Cait Sith. Which was weird.

So he's about to leave … on time … when he hears Jericho.

"Sure, I'm available," he says in a relentlessly cheerful voice carried from the PA terminal in the garage. He pauses. "Do you need to meet inside for treatment, or is this a social visit?"

-

"I… actually wanted to ask you about the property… er… next store." Jericho fidgets a little. This sensation takes some getting used to. It's like being uncomfortably warm and having an itchy army issue blanket on you at the same time. Ick.

"Do you have a moment to take a little walk?"

-

"Sure. Hang on a sec," Angelo answers, and the garage door (non-sliding) opens and latches, and Angelo walks the thirty feet across the parking lot to the front airlock entrance.

"Jericho. You're looking … Hm. Kinda demony. A bit chewed up. Mystically chained. And you don't seem to be balancing your thaumic energies very well."

No sympathy for the (visible irritation caused by the) "sacred ground" effect — Angelo is not going to apologize for making a place safe.

-

"Long story. Which I'll tell you but… ick… but I'm a bit more worried abut the neighbors at the moment." Jericho exits the building and heads up the sidewalk. "How long, exactly has that lot been vaccant?" He asks, gesturing to the structure adjacent to the Clinic. He's doing that thing where it's pretty clear that he's looking at something only he can see. Thank you HUD. Stopping in front of it he peers through a crack in one of the boarded up windows. Hrm. No thermal, no IR. That's promising. Might actually be empty. Still scanning that signal though.

-

"The warehouse emptied out a month or two ago, it was being used for, how you say, inappropriate purposes," Ange says. In other words, it was being used as an accountancy site by the Kingpin before he got arrested and a bunch of his businesses got shut down.

"What're you looking for?"

-

"There's a signal coming from the building that matches something I've been tracking for the last couple of weeks." Angelo may well remember the last time Jericho said he was 'tracking' something.

"It's some kind of highly advanced mind altering tech broadcasting a mysterious signal to… somewhere. Haven't run that down yet. For now I'm just turning them over to a friend of mine for study. Couldn't hurt to have them out of circulation… I hope."

-

"You don't say," Angelo deadpans. "OK. If you want in… alohamora."

Angelo opens the door. No, there was no surge of magic when he said the word. But when he touched the door, something flashes in a weird pattern and it swings open.

"So, what's it do, anyway?"

Angelo watches Jericho a bit more than he watches the area around him — a bit. Once they're out of the public eye, he does start being an obvious light source.

-

Jericho blinks. "That's handy." He steps in the doorway and immediately heads down one of the nearest rather dusty hallways toward the back. "Honestly I haven't the faintest but anyone able to use neo-psyichic fields to hide something definitely wants it to remain hidden and really, if it's not obvious what it does that does make it a bit suspect. So far all I've seen them do is try a lot to get people to ignore it… but I've also run into people using portal technology and cybernetics that seemed similarly constructed and they were not friendly."

-

"Tell me more about this neo-psychic unfriendliness," Angelo says in a blatant 'fake shrink' voice, and draws a circle in the air over his head, leaving a blaze of light behind that's too large to be a halo. He mutters something that sounds vaguely like seek and you will … as he pokes at the ring of light, and it brightens in one place and dims everywhere else … a directional arrow? It seems to follow him as he moves.

"The thing about using an active suppression is that you can usually tell that it's there."

-

Jericho blinks. "I was always told not to go into the light." He ribs as he follows the light to the expected… yep there it is. Has the two round a corner into the back part of the storage area there's a very distinct, external 'You don't see me.' There, in the corner is an ashcan sized cylender with blinky lights. Jericho winces at the field and pushes through it. "Yeah, I know you stupid R2D2 wanna be." He growls.

The hacker kneels by the device, examining it closely before he opens up a panel. "Let's see if we can turn that off." The leather case slung at his back bounces a little.

-

"Want I should wreck it?" Angelo says in thug-speak. He's joking, of course. One hopes. But he did draw his "snap-stick" that he had made up - a somewhat fragile-seeming construction of paper and springs and rubber-bands that telescopes from a foot-long to six feet long, it's totally a prop, until he wraps it in a Seraphim's Shield and it becomes unbreakable. Apparently. It's also glowing. Ange spins it once or twice.

"Why does it think we shouldn't see it? It's not very good at that. Tell me more about these not friendly people, Jeri."

-

"They were armored, had energy rifles, big ones, walkers and also seemed to have some kind of tech-based psychic abilities. One of them influenced a young heroine to punch another young heroine. It was kind of ugly for a bit." Jericho says as he fiddles, frowning. "Herm. This one's a bit different. There's a secondary circuit in here that I've never-"

He never gets to finish. The lights flash red on the device and a large portal opens up behind Angelo, out of which stops a pair trio of impressive, muscular men in some kind of neo-ceramic plate armor. They all have face covering helmets with third eyes. Jericho takes one look up at them and his eyes go wide.

"Ohshit."

-

"Well, there's something you don't see every day, Chauncey," Angelo says, as a small disk of light appears at the fingertips of his left hand, and his wings unfurl behind him. He mutters, something about shades of seraphim confound enemies around and it's possible, though not guaranteed, that his location becomes a bit blurry to the newcomers. If they're enemies.

-

His location does seem to be concealed because the masked men go right for Jericho. The hacker yelps and rolls out of the way, opening up that case on his back and extracting what at first seems to be an oversized leatherman but rapidly unfolds into a wickedly sharp blade. At the same time molten metal seems to flow over his forearms such that it seems that he's wearing bracers… made of liquid silver.

The response of the assailants to this is to begin hurling telekinetic bolts at Jericho. They're no fools. The sword suggests prowess at close combat, so they're aiming to keep him busy and at a distance. And succeeding, sending the hacker diving for cover once more. They are however utterly ignoring Angelo.

-

That's odd. It worked. And he did it in front of them. Ange slices a wing down through the "R2D2" knowing that the effect might disrupt the psionic field; it's not going to do physical damage but it might make the machine shut down. It does that to his laptop when he forgets to pay attention.

"Gentlemen, explain yourselves," Angelo says from behind them, letting his voice go all spooky and hollow because of the shades of the seraphim. Seriously, his sponsors have some heavy duty product placement.

-

There's an instant impression of something looking for Angelo. The wills of the three psychics join to search out whatever it is speaking to them. It's odd because the process is almost automatic. Like it's a search routine in a web browser. It does give Jericho a moment to stand up… and then promptly dodge again when a crate is telekinetically flung at him.

"The hell?! These guys are just like the ones we saw in Metro." Jericho calls out. A lamp follows the crate. Jericho cuts it in half.

-

"Huh. Psychic fiends network," Angelo says, and snaps the glowing quarterstaff out to strike at the base of the neck of one of them. It has fairly little mass, but it carries a charge of scrambling Light, and it's rather solid.

"And by network I mean local area."

-

The blow is enough to stagger the one that Angelo strikes. He turns, almost drunkenly and snaps his hand up. A wave of force emanates from it, not targeted at anything in particular, just a huge shove to everything in that direction.

Jericho takes advantage of the distraction to close. His blade snaps down on an arm and bites into the armor. Tellingly, though he's traced out, it doesn't shear clean through the limb. The retaliatory blow is deflected, barely. It came at near blinding speed.

-

Ange slides back a few feet, while the shelves behind him are rather more violently deranged. The Shield deflects or absorbs some of the shove, but enough gets through for Angelo to feel it. He frowns, and throws two light-feathers with stun-and-daze charges at the other two while spinning his staff around, and if the guy doesn't actually SEE him he'll POP him again with the staff.

-

Now here's the interesting bit. The stun and daze feathers clearly hit. And clearly do their thing, but as attuned as he is to magic Angelo can see some kind of… circuitry that's apparently designed to absorb and disappate arcane energies. Which is why one of the bruisers collapses and the other staggers and remains upright. Fire lights in it's hands. Greate. A pyrokene…

The other one has his hands full not getting them chopped off because Jericho is wielding that odd folding blade like he means business and has already manages to shear off several armored plates. The man underneath is gray skinned and heavily grafted. Some kind of Cyborg. It's becoming a contest of pure strength and combat prowess and Jericho has it all over his opponent.

-

"Huh. They're psiborgs, Jer. That one just absorbed …" Angelo mutters another spell.

Flame of Seraphim, ignite and draw the flames into your healing pyre and he reaches over and TOUCHES the one he hit with the stick… restoration and release from slavery to the machine — that'll do intriguing things when it encounters circuitry, especially if it's take-over-the-brain circuitry. Jeri (or his 'companion') may note that Angelo had that one already designed.

-

"Yeah, the others were too." Jericho says as he's slammed against a wall. A punch meant to remove his head goes into said wall as the hacker drops and rams his blade home, rather messily ending his attacker. Angelo's spell is rather a masterwork and the helmet seems to fritz and spark and smoke before his attack slumps over, utterly immobile.

The silence is almost deafening. "Impressive. What'd you do to him?"

-

"Wait a sec," Angelo says, kneeling to pull the helmet off; it should come loose, if it can. He's not sure what's going to be underneath.

"I don't like cyborg systems that enslave their human component," the glowing doctor says. "I healed it… but I don't know how much it was able to do."

-

Jericho kneels down as that helmet comes off. There's a man underneath, grey skinned, hairless. His eyes have been replaced with bionic ones and there are implants all over him. None of them appear to be functioning at the moment. The hacker checks a pulse. "He's alive… technically. No bets on what is ECG looks like though. These implants resemble ones I recovered from the last incursion. I'll bet they're from the same source. Still haven't figured out exactly where that is."

He stands and looks around. "I wonder… coincidence that they popped in? Or defense mechanism?"

-

"Yes," Angelo says. "Something went ping."

He touches the grey skin and murmurs, RESTORATION — and the ankhs on both wrists blaze too brightly to look at… if the man's soul still exists, if his mind ever existed, if he was ever a person who could be something more than a cog, this should bring him back. Otherwise… if he's just a Borg who was never a self … well. The Seraphim might take him away, like Bob and the Assassin.

-

The shimmer of magic strips the psybernetic implants away, strips away the armor and the gray pallor to the skin and leaves… well, a thoroughly average looking man who is still quite unconscious on the floor. "Hmmm… so they were human after all." Jericho murmurs. Not some kind of flesh drone. Well, not at the start at anyway. "Good to know. What do you want to do with him?"

-

"Depends on what happens when he wakes up. Want to take him somewhere that they can't reach? Because I'm not sure I know of such a place," and Ange wing-flashes the other unconscious guy to keep him out… it'll take a bit of time before he has enough energy to do a full restoration on that one, and he knows he's too late on the third.

-

"I'm not sure how they're getting in so your guess is as good as mine on that one. Given that my SHIELD contacts haven't been screaming at me about portalling invaders though I think it's safe to say however they're getting from wherever they are they can't use it much… What about your folk? Would the Seraph be interested in this?" Jericho sets up a rather alien looking beacon on the device and it vanishes in a flare of purple light a moment later.

-

"OK, hang on a sec, I have enough to …" Ange says, and touches the unconscious borg, chanting again, Seraphim's Fire burn bright and clear, be free from unwanted chains, RESTORED AND WHOLE.

That's another blinding flash of light and possible recession of the machine.

-

Jericho has to shield his eyes for this one. Despite appearances, it seems this one was a woman, again, quite average looking and still utterly unconscious. "Mmmmm. That's rather more disturbing." She'd been so heavily modified he couldn't have called that. He lets out a sigh. "Not managed to take any of them alive so far. I can bring them up to my friend if you don't think you can handle them better. Still don't know who or what exacctly we're dealing with."

-

That spell probably rhymed in whatever language it used to be, but something about the use of Seraph magic makes it comprehensible, or maybe that's just Angelo's translation spell that's always running. He nods to Jericho at the suggestion.

"Take them up, see if they recover. If they do, they may be able to tell more about what happened. I'm hoping that they weren't related to your cyberware. I see some distinct similarities."

-

"Makes two of us." Jerico pulls out an odd looking communicator and flips it open. "K'tten, four up to Deplo at your convenience."

Looking back to Angelo the hacker sighs. "Well nice to see you again anyway. Seems I'll have to owe you that story. Keep an eye out for more strangeness though, and don't be a stranger."

Then the teleporation beam sweeps up the three psyborgs (two former psyborgs, actually) and Jericho, leaving no trace.

-

"Stranger than that? No way," Angelo says. He looks at the weird R2D2-shaped thing, and steps away from it; it promptly vanishes and he shrugs. Back to the street, his wings and the glow fade, and he clips the staff back onto his belt, and goes across to the clinic to get his motorcycle. He might have time to get his workout in after all.


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