Raggity Andy

December 21, 2014: Ronnie and Barry show up in the nick of time as the son of an old enemy comes to get revenge on Professor Houston.


The Big Apple



  • Rag Doll

Mood Music:





As Dr. Houston is packing up some of his belongings for the rest of the winter break, he smiles down at Veronica. "Yes, if you wouldn't mind dropping them off at my house. I'm afraid that I'll be leaving for Paris in the morning and I would like to review it on the flight. I will send them to Cannes after I've had a chance to review them."

He's referring to some of the documents regarding an upcoming proposal for some grants from international film interests for the school. It was a small task for Veronica and he had forgotten to ask her to bring them in today and he was inwardly kicking himself over it. Still, he was Veronica's boss and it was pretty important that they get those documents.




When the good Dr. Houston arrives home, he notices a very large rectangular box out on his stoop. After a lot of huffing and puffing, Houston is finally able to get the box in the door and with a hefty push he slides it across the wooden floor of his Victorian home.

After returning from the kitchen for a box cutter, he slides the blade in between the folds, slicing the tape in two. He opens it, inspecting the return address. "Peter Merkel, Senior," he says out loud and takes a deep breath. He'd not heard from Merkel in some time, not since he had "put Vaudeville" out of business in Keystone City when in his youth he and a consortium of young entrepreneurs had opened a giant movie theater that turned out to be wildly successful.

He moves the packing peanuts out of the way and his face wrinkles at the odd Christmas present within. A full sized doll with red stringy hair, plain white face, and black and white diamond patterned suit sits within, stuffed in at odd angles.

Houston pulls out the heavy doll and looks at it incredulously. "What in the world?"

With a sigh he decides to head to his internet to investigate.

The glow of the computer monitor lights up his face; he came in too quickly to even bother to turn on the lights. Behind him, unbeknownst to him, a long, dark figure rises behind him.

Ronnie Hautzig has important documents in her bag. She's on her way to Professor Houston's home, and the whole subway ride over, and most of the subsequent walk, she's been turning over in her palm a small business card she received in the past night: it says "HAWKEYE" on it and a phone number, no other info. She's also checking her phone intermittently to see if Barry's tried to check on her. Lots of things going on right now. Her abdomen is bandaged under her layers and her fleece. Going out superheroing as soon as Barry left her alone probably wasn't the best move for healing, but… whatever, she thinks. What's done is done.

When Ronnie gets to the front door, she pockets the business card — which is now a little worn from being thoroughly thumbed — and rings the doorbell. "Professor Houston, it's me, Ronnie," she calls after he doesn't answer in .5 seconds.

There is no immediate answer to Ronnie's beckoning. Inside the windows are dark and though it seems like no one is going to answer, from her place outside she can hear a terrible crash of something falling-perhaps glass splashing out along a wooden floor.

And there's definitely movement. There's no cries of anything, but there's certainly someone within.

"Professor Houston?!" Ronnie cries again, after the crash. When she sees movement, she draws in a deep breath, gets her feet in position… and then shoulder checks the door, hard enough to bust it in. It doesn't even make her break a sweat.

Once she's in, Ronnie looks around, trying to analyze the threat. Obviously, she's in an unfamiliar environment, doesn't know what she's up against… and is in the dark. "Whoever you are… I really, strongly recommend you give up now," she says, her voice taking on a gruffer, meaner cant. "Otherwise it'll get pretty messy for you."

In the moonlight, Ronnie can see that the floor is spattered with blood and the trail heads off into the darkness. There's no response, of course, just the creepy crawlies and faint noises that are either part of an old home, or in Ronnie's head.

Abruptly, some skiffle music begins playing from somewhere, a happy tune that would have been popular in the 1950s.

"Okay, whoever's in here," Ronnie says as the skiffle music starts playing, "if you give up now, I'll call the cops and we'll leave it at that. Because trust me, that is your best option. And this is your LAST warning."

Ronnie follows the blood trail, listening for the noises. Her fists are tense, and she's in a defensive posture as much as she can really manage, ready for a fight.

From nowhere a figure attacks Ronnie from behind. Impossibly long and sinewy, her assailant raps his arm around her right one and leaps up onto her back. Extended legs twirl around her left as his weight presses upon her back. His last remaining appendage holds a knife high above her, readying to bring it down upon her chest!

Ronnie roots her legs, and while she doubles over, she doesn't go down to the floor. This guy's weight might be too much for the average grad student to handle, but luckily she's squarely above average.

Still, she doesn't have her arms free to block the knife. So she improvises. Ronnie rears up, then runs — and jumps forward, into a somersault right next to a wall, trying to time it so that the figure gripping to her arms will get slammed into the vertical surface. Sure, she'll probably land on her head, too, but she can take it. Probably.

As the pair slam onto the floor, RAG DOLL is forced to release his grip on Ronnie as his knife goes flying, skittering, the sliding along the floor until it bounces off the white wall. Like a rubberband, he snaps away from her, putting some distance in between them and giving Ronnie some breathing room.

Across the living room, in the kitchen, Ronnie can see the bloody body of Mitchell Houston as he is on his cell phone, calling the police.

"Professor Houston?! Just— just hold on!" Ronnie had figured him dead. She's glad he's not, but it makes her job a bit trickier, because she can't go full-on Eventide. Er, full-on Agent Hautzig. She's started thinking of herself as the vigilante more than the agent, and one day she'll have time to wonder when that happened…

Ronnie's first move is to lunge for the knife, more to keep it out of Rag Doll's hands than anything else.

Rag Doll sees her move and dives for her!

The pair smash together, several desperate inches from the knife. His arms are longer, and it surely won't be long until he gets hold of it. His limbs are everywhere, wrapping around her body and incredibly strong.


"What have we got?" the Flash says into his comm unit. Behind him a pair of would be baddies are tied together and it seems the Scarlet Speedster is all set to move onto the next place he's needed.

"Not much, to be honest," responds Caitlyn from her hub inside STAR Labs.

"You could always try and break your speed record!" Barry can almost hear the smile on Cisco Ramon's face as the young scientist's voice comes through.

"Wait, Barry. There's a call on the Upper East Side. There's an attack going on right now."

"Patch me the address."

"On it," responds Cisco. Once the information is sent to his communicator, there's nothing left of the Flash aside from a wake of electricity.

Ronnie figures that breaking Rag Doll's arms are out. And he's stronger than she thought — now that he has a better grip on her, it's like she's wrapped up in steel girders. But she figures he needs to breathe, right? She has one arm free, and as she goes down, she tries to reach behind herself. Hopefully, she thinks, he can't make like a giraffe, as she tries to reach for his throat and clamp down with her super-grip.

Rag Doll gives a yelp!

He releases his grip on her, but rolls down towards the knife. In the confusion and the mayhem, somehow he's ended up with it. As she can see him now, in the pale moonlight, his white mask is emotionless as he rubs his wounded throat.

"Sly harlot," he says, clearly in pain. "You'll not have the opp-OOF!"

Almost instantly, Ronnie will be able to feel the hair on her body sit on end as the electrons within the room begin to pull softly towards a crackle THOOM! as it speeds through the room and wallops right into the would be murderer!

And though it takes place much quicker than Ronnie can see, from the Flash's perspective it takes place as plain as day.

The red blur barrels into Rag Doll at high speeds, but having never met the foe he doesn't realize the man's abilities.

As he's carried, Rag Doll wraps his arms around and drives the knife deep into the back of the Scarlet Speedster, right in between the ribs and into the fleshy part of his organs!

Everything becomes visible again as Rag Doll and Flash become visible. The Flash screams out in pain.

Ronnie doesn't really know what's happening, but it's time to arm herself. Lucky for her she has reflexes fast enough to catch a bullet out of the air — because when Rag Doll and the Flash rematerialize…

…well, that's when Ronnie's swinging the couch at Rag Doll's head like a caber. It's one of those ones with the foldable beds — so while she can't wield it with precision (other than to not hit Flash too badly), she can smash very nicely with it.

Rag Doll smashes backwards into the wall and creates a large divot in the plaster. The couch slides down, and the villain slumps down over it, clearly knocked out.

Meanwhile, the Flash is sitting up, apparently listening to a conversation she can't quite hear. "I'm trying," he mutters mostly to himself as he as to reach at an impossible angle to rip the knife out of his body.

He turns, blue eyes wide as he sees who he's in the room with.


Ronnie really hopes Professor Houston was too busy not dying to see her throw that couch. If she has to she'll cite those adrenaline things where moms lift cars or whatever, but she already knows it won't be convincing. That's when the Flash, still stabbed, speaks to her and…

Ronnie's eyes widen slightly and she just… gapes for a second. "NO," she says, her voice almost flattened by the weight of realization. This guy is really…

Ronnie moves to hold the Flash. "Hold still," she says. "One good turn…" and then she yanks it out, with next to no warning, just like he did for her. Her hand clamps down on the wound like a vise. "Seriously?!" she says, continuing her train of thought from a minute ago. "Come on…"

The Flash winces terribly as it is yanked out. "Gah," he says, unable to reach the spot to start the bleeding. "I'll be okay. Check on /him/." He means, Houston, of course, who sits unconscious. Lucky for him he's still around and breathing. Lucky for her, he's facing away from him and has the perfect cover.

Assuming Barry will cooperate.

Which he will.

Ronnie's brain is kickstarted back into working order by the Flash reminding her of her priorities. "Right," she says, and inwardly kicks herself. Stupid! She's a field agent, she should know better.

She kneels by Houston, making sure he's still alive. "He's lost a lot of blood," she reports. "I think he can pull through as long as help gets here fast enough." She's already doing her best to help, though she has limited resources to work with. It's just basic first aid — she can always pin this one on taking a class somewhere.

Wincing in pain, Flash joins by her side. He reaches down to pick the professor up, grunting as he does so. Normally it wouldn't be a feat to lift the man, but with a knife wound, it can be pretty tricky.

"One second."

It takes two before he's back.

"You know anything about that guy?" he says as he jabs a thumb towards Rag Doll. "One hell of a bendy guy."

Ronnie's hair rustles from the Flash's departure and return. She has time for exactly one blink. "That guy?" she says, looking over at Rag Doll, and then at the Flash with a faintly incredulous expression. "Why would I know anything ab— of course I don't! I was dropping off some papers, this guy's my professor, I mean, the guy you took, not… that guy over there, and that guy over there was HERE, and… really, it's you?!"

"You seem surprised. Just about as surprised as I was when I saw you check that couch over there," the Flash says, tilting his head towards her. "I feel like you seem a bit underwhelmed. Had you not caught me by surprised I'd have done my normal trick, but I was a little distracted. There was that knife in my back."

"That was— I don't know, that's different!" Ronnie says. "That was in the heat of the moment! This is just weird! Underwhelmed— How am I supposed to react, am I supposed to scream and throw a parade?" Ronnie falls back onto her butt and sits, looking over at the Flash. Barry. The Flash. Whichever. "You know, the past few days have been kind of a lot for me," she says, rubbing her temples.

"Well, no. I mean," The Flash sighs and nods, "I'm really sorry you've had to go through all of this. For what it's worth, you stopped him. And you probably saved your Professor. And you can take a stab wound better than anyone I have on my contact list."

Ronnie's eyes flash over to… er. "Thanks, uh, I think," she says. She's quiet for a second. "I mean, your secret, or whatever, is safe. With me, I mean. I'm not gonna tell anyone." She runs her hands down over her face, and leaves a faint red smudge on herself from it. Because her hand was on Barry's wound. Or from touching Houston. Either way, ew.

"I appreciate that, Ronnie. And likewise." The Flash approaches her, holding out his hands, not sure if she's the type who would appreciate a comforting hug in this situation or not. From his perspective, she must be totally out of sorts. "Is there anything I can do to help you while we wait for the police?"

"Uh, yeah, actually, there is," Ronnie says. She sort of returns the hug but not really. She has to be gentle as a little lamb because, uh, the Flash just got stabbed. And so did she. "As far as anyone needs to know, you, the superhero, threw the couch." She then snorts slightly, as if she can't believe what she just said. "…should you like… tie that guy into a knot so he can't skitter away…?"

Flash nods, "Yeah, I can cover for you." As she mentions to tie the guy up, he nods again, "That's…probably a good idea." And a split second later, Rag Doll is wrapped up like a bow on Christmas. "After you give your interview to the cops, if you want me to take you home, I can. No one is going to hurt you," Barry has no clue that that's probably the last worry on Ronnie's mind.

Ronnie runs her hands through her hair. Some blood got in it so a patch of hair actually stands up. It's like a scene from a movie. Though less glamorous, for sure.

"I… sure." Ronnie blinks, and sounds like she's a million miles away. "That… yeah." She's probably in shock. After all of, well, this. But she's planning. Trying to think three steps ahead. "Yeah, I mean, yes, please, I'd, um, like that. I think."

"Hey," the Flash adds, "If you need to talk to someone, I can find people who can get you some help. You don't need to go through this alone. Totally confidential."

By now she can see the flashing red lights in the windows.

The whole thing goes quicker than one might expect. She's questioned. Both her and Flash give the same story in order to keep her secret intact. And before they know it, they are released.

When they're released, Ronnie has her bag, and she's holding it to her stomach, as if trying to protect the wound she received the other day. "Hey, are you sure you're okay to give me a lift with, you know…" She mimes being stabbed in roughly the spot the Flash was. "Um, being stabbed."

"Yeah, it's almost totally healed now," the Flash says, looking over his back, but can't quite get the angle. He gives up. "You ready?" He makes like he's going to pick her up like a proper hero.

"Um… yes," Ronnie says, not really sure how to stand when it comes to being picked up in the superheroic bridal position or whatever. "Just don't drop me, okay? I— wait, shouldn't I tell you where I live, first?"

"Oh right," Flash says embarrassed. "I mean, you can tell me the general area. After all we've been through the past few days, it might be wise not to tell me where you actually live." He gives her a nerdy, too wide smile. If there was any doubt as to whether it was Barry under there, it's gone.

"You're a literal superhero," Ronnie replies, as if having to remind the Flash of this fact. "If anything, I definitely want you to know where I live, so that if I ever need you, because of, of, I don't know, crazy… tangly knotty man murder reprisals, you know how to get there." She gives her address, a walk-up apartment deep in the jungles of Greenwich Village. Not a bad neighborhood, but definitely a student-living kind of rent bracket. Well. Student-living by Greenwich Village standards.

The entire trip takes just a few moments and they come to a stop just outside of her place. "Listen," he says quietly. "If you ever need to talk, or anything, just…don't hesitate. This sort of stuff can be difficult to go through. I know; I've seen a lot of this stuff over the years."

"I… that's really sweet of you but it's really weird coming from a guy with wings on the side of his head. Those— /are/ wings, right? I mean, I don't know, it's just, really, I think I just need to — sleep on this, and…" Ronnie is babbling and clearly not sure /what/ she needs to do. "Right now I'm… tired and I really just want to sleep. I'll text you? That sounds so weird, saying you'll text a guy in a red, um, suit…"

"Look, I'm not trying to pick you up, Ronnie. This is serious. If you need me, I'll be around." The Flash takes a few steps downward and gives her a solemn nod. "Take care of yourself." With that he zips away, leaving her alone on her front step.

Ronnie sits down on her stoop for a minute, blinking a few times. "I mean," she says, to no one, "you can try to pick me up if you want." After a few minutes, she gets cold and goes inside.

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