A Day at the Beach

Summary:
December 27, 2014: Some Atlanteans, Frenchmen, a Dragon, and an award winning novelist spend the day at the beach.

Virginia Beach

A sandy beach off the coast of Virginia


Characters

NPCs
French Mercenaries
Stacy Palumbo


Mood Music:


Virginia Beach is sort of a tourist hotspot, some ways south of New York. It is, in fact, rather appropriately in Virginia. And though it's rather too cold for swimming in the Atlantic there was a fair crowd out enjoying an unusual spate of fair weather to relax and watch the ocean roll in.

Note the 'was' because at present those people have moved off the beach front in alarm. An explosion off the shore followed an odd slick of oily liquid on the water. A few moments later the survivors of a downed Atlantean craft staggered to shore. They're odd, scaly, reptilian, and frankly, lucky that they can breathe air. Most can't. And they were armed. And worried.

With good reason. Several mercenaries showed up moments later, quite human, and appear to be engaged in a tense standoff with the Atlanteans. What's going on here? No one's bothered to ask and the police have just cordoned off the beach a mile back.

-

Green Lantern had been travelling north up along the coast, having rescued a pack of refugees lost at sea between Cuba and American shores (man, were their faces red), planning to grab a bottle of something red, a bit of something blonde (although he's open to negotiation), and whatever hotel is still taking his Ferris Air credit card.

And then there's a bunch of disruption, conflicting signals getting picked up by the ring and channeled into his ear - people coming out of the sea, guns, swimmers on the beach, something about sharks and Godzilla (the last two might have suspect sources). Whatever's going on, he'd best check it out.

Which is how a green light shines in the sky above the beach as the Emerald…come to think of it, he didn't really have a name like that yet. Gotta come up with one. Green Lantern would have to do for now. He hovers somewhere between the mercenaries and the Atlanteans, looking back and forth. Luckily, he can actually understand both sides.

-

Mera is actually not really anywhere close to shore when the Atlantean craft was downed. However, she picked up on the distress in the mind of one of the individuals who managed to get to shore as she'd spent time with his family not long before becoming their city's queen. She sends a telepathic message to try and reassure the reptilian and is on her way to assist as fast as she can swim. Now, while she doesn't swim anywhere near as fast as Arthur can, she's no slouch. She'll hit the shore in about another two minutes. It helps that she can basically propel herself along with her own personal-sized tsunami wave.

-

The typical reaction to an explosion is to vacate the premises. Most people immediately began to move off the beach front. It was a perfectly reasonable response to an alarm. But Hunter Rose is anything but typical. Ostensibly, the novelist had come down from New York to Virginia because his fourteen year old ward, Stacy, had begged him too. Most of her friends had come to Virginia Beach, and he was a soft touch. At least, that was the official story.

The real reason is that one of Grendel's former employees had managed to get himself into the witness protection plan. The poor fellow never stood a chance. Not less than fifteen minutes after his handlers had left in their non-descript vehicle, his neighbours found him face down in a lit barbecue.

With that business concluded, Hunter had come to the beach with his ward, watched as she frolicked with her friends, and admired the plumes of smoke rising from the ship. It was a beautiful sight thanks to the emerald streaks of light radiating from the ring of the airborne figure.

While still seated in his recliner, Hunter noted how his daughter Stacy seemed to be running alongside her friends, and one of the other parents. She would be fine, for now. And if not, Todd Jeffries would suffer unimaginably. For now, the ship held his attention.

He quietly folded the tassel into his page and closed the book, grabbed something from his bag, and then rose to his feet, where he began running like the other people, doing his best to blend in with the crowd. Most of them ran for their cars or for some other form of safety, but not Hunter. He ran for the changing room. It was in the appropriate direction and would give him the opportunity to change.

-

There's also a dragon. Not just any dragon of course. This one has six brightly coloured feathered wings instead of the usual two. He circles the Atleanteans, currently sheltering behind a low beam, once as the mercenaries look up first at Hal then at him.

The Mercenary leader, French, is clearly upset with his people that any of the Atlanteans managed to escape because he wants their technology. In fact he clearly has plans to haul off the wreck of their craft once he's dealt with the people here but they have to do it before the authorities intervene or…

Oh crap. There's Mera.

Mera's arrival is greeted with relief by the Atlanteans. Someone they can trust. Thank goodness.

-

Green Lantern looks up at the dragon, "Oh, great, that explains the Godzilla thing," he says. He expects it'll all just be a cultural misunderstanding. That sort of thing happens with various races living on one planet. You got your chocolate in my peanut butter! NO, it is YOU who has gotten your peanut butter in MY chocolate! That sort of thing. But listening to the French (oh god, even translated, they sound wanky) threaten to just steal the Atlanteans stuff rather irritates him. The ring translates for everyone listening into their tonness as he says.

"Hey! Ixnay on the ealing-stay uff-stay! You're gonna be lucky if I don't haul you to the authorities myself, which is probably what I'll end up doing because you're going to try and shoot me and act like idiots and WHO JUST SHOT ME WITH A GRAPPLING HOOK?" he says, feeling a wire-cord wrap around his ankle, the hook finding perches on the surface of his force field.

-

A moment ago, Hunter Rose entered the changing room. Now, Grendel emerges. It's cliche to be sure, but the beach provides few opportunities for any kind of change, and in this day and age, surely someone must have stayed behind to film it, or at the very least filmed what they could as they ran in terror.

To further conceal his identity, Grendel did not leave through the flap in the tent that he entered, instead, he made his own perpendicular exit on either side, cutting through it and two other tents before finally emerging. The effect was that he ruined three changing tents, but it also would suggest to any investigator that whoever cut a hole in the tent, did it while running through all three. There was someone in the middle tent. Too bad for them.

Moving along, Grendel, who now wears his iconic black mask, white gloves, and pineapple themed swimwear, runs along the beach, losing little momentum as he perfectly places his feet to leap off the land, rather than getting bedded down in it. He arrives at one of the wind sails, breaking the mast with his fork-like pole weapon. During the course of the swing, he fires off a grappling hook from it, which wraps around the ringbearer, and lifts Grendel aloft.

Once he's high enough to glide on a current of wind, using the wind sail as if it were a glider, the grappling hook is released, with the rope left to dangle from the Green Lantern's ankle. For now, Grendel uses his makeshift glider to circle the disaster area, appreciating the damage as if it were a work of art.

-

First things first. Mera locates the downed craft and promptly indicates to the royal guard following in her wake to salvage what they can of it, then surfaces with quite literally zero splash. She stands on a small 'podium' of water while 'glaring' the oily liquid spill into as confined a space as possible to prevent whatever this substance is from injuring any marine creatures. Almost resembling a thin layer of glass, a huge 'bowl' made from solidified water keeps the oily stuff in place. Now, where to put it… ah.

Mera and the 'bowl' approach the shore at about the average pace of a speedboat as she realizes that Rowan is nearby and can make use of his ability to swim through the air. She addresses him telepathically, ~ Rowan, I need a container large enough to hold this fuel until Arthur's guard arrive.~ And then she sees the mercenaries seemingly threatening HER ship's crew.

-

This is what's known in some quarters as a Mexican standoff (sans Mexicans). Rowan banks off to find something suitable to hold all that water. Well, okay, on reflection it's probably not all that much but it does take him some time to return with a suitable container (someone's corvette convertible) and deposit it on the beach where Mera can dump all that fuel.

"What's… going on here?" Rowan asks as he lands opposite Hal with a thump, all thirty reptilian feet of him. He glances up, noting the oddly timed hang glider. The ship's crew isn't talking yet but Mera can see the sudden, catastrophic loss of hull integrity in their minds, followed by the frantic scramble for safety. The shore had been the nearest thing and while not the first choice, they'd known that an undersea surfacer craft had been shadowing them.

The Mercenaries don't react well to Hal, and swiftly take advantage of his distraction to get themselves a better position. They don't seem like they feel like leaving yet though. Might have something to do with Mera over there.

"If you think we will come quietly…" The leader says in French…

-

Mera dumps the fuel into the open-top Corvette as she walks out of the water, onto the sand and straight toward the group of mercenaries while telepathically reassuring the ship's crew that there is nothing here to fear. Her eyes focus on the weapon-toting, French-speaking Surfacer, not understanding a word of his spoken language but picking up his intent more that clearly enough. She glares at the man, then a whip-like cord of solidified water snakes out of the surf to wrap around his neck. "I prefer that you don't," she tells the man in oddly accented and angry English. Her accent is a mix of Atlantis and … coastal New England. Possibly Maine.

-

Green Lantern would probably totally be into staring at the dragon thing, which is really pretty cool and impressive, very Universal Studios, with the roar and the wings and all that. He is, however, immediately distracted by the man who decides to use him the way Tarzan uses a jungle tree, just swinging willy nilly off of his forcefield to deposit his masked behind closer to the action, "Hey, down in front!" he yells at Grendel.

And then, Mera arrives all regal bearing and pushy and Northeastern, like Katherine Hepburn but kind of undersea and all that.

"Wow, nice tiiiiiiiiiiiii-ara!" he says, finally flying down more directly to put himself in between the mercenaries and the Atlanteans, "And since that's armed robbery, I'm going to have to back Her Wateriness up on this one. Place nice. Be good. Guns down. Go eat some snails or something. Don't make me hit you."

-

Grendel wasn't quite sure whose side he would be on this day. French mercenaries and an Atlantean crew. It was a tough call. On the one side, there was a degenerate race of inferior beings who still clung to the mistaken belief that they actually held sway in this or any other world. And on the side, there were the French. But when a dragon emerged, Grendel knew what he was going to do.

With a swift move, he shifts his support to one arm, keeping his makeshift glider and weapon together so that he can mime tipping his hat to the Green Lantern, "I promise to post a positive review of Green Lantern Airways just as soon as I can find somewhere that would accept it. The in flight entertainment was superb, the flight devoid of turbulence, although on the negative side, I never did get my bag of peanuts."

Turning his attention back to Rowen, he decided that he had always wanted to fight a dragon. He had fought many beings, some human, some not, but he had never battled a mythological creature. Tilting the wind sail that he had converted into a makeshift glider, he flew at the beast, dropping into a dive. He waited, building up speed, waited some more.

All around him, he could see the currents of wind, so strong was his dive, and his hearing suffered from pops as the pressure changed. This was not a move for the faint of heart. But at the last second, as he was about to drive into the creature, he pulled up, sailing above, and leapt from the craft, letting it spiral away.

When he landed, it would be with his electrified fork out, pointed down, fully intent on impaling the beast. St. Grendel and the Dragon had a nice ring to it, though it would have to go into his private journal.

-

*RUUUUMMMMBBBBLLLEEEE* the sands on the beach begin to bounce and jiggle in place as something causes the beach to tremble slightly. Then the surf surges into a fifteen foot wave that washes up with the force of a small car, well past the tide line, and crashes against retaining wall at the beaches back end. A ship crests the waves on the beach, it's charcoal gray skin shedding the water in great splashes as it rises from the water like the back of some great arrow head shaped beast. Then it keeps rising in oddly rhythmic lurches and bounces, the metal of the ship groaning and creaking loudly under its own weight as it finds it's impressive tonnage no longer displaced by water. There is the sound of twisting rending steel, a scream of tortured metal, and the entire ship is tipped up on its side where its own weight pushes it deep into the sand leaving it tipped on its edge so that just shy of five stories of gleaming steel are now thrust out of the beach itself. Golden and gleaming Arthur stands where the ship once was, his face set into a stern angry glower. It would appear he did not approve of that ship being in his ocean. He decided to return it. It that wasn't enough to announce his presence he begins to walk along the length of the ship, the blades of his trident dragging along the sub's belly, filling the air with a keening screech as the steel of the sub peels away like tissue paper from the weapon's golden points. Someone's taught him how to make an entrance… probably Wonder Woman.

-

Several things now happen at once. Arthur definitely makes an entrance that would make an Oscar starlet green with envy. In all of this is somehow missed the diving Grendel pouncing on Rowan. Rowan himself is so distracted that he doesn't notice until the fork has actually impacted his scales. Electricity sparks and arcs across him and the creature rears back in pain. There's a moment when the tines of the fork have finally separated from Rowan's skin when all is silent…

Then more electricity shoots up his entire body, round his horns as the dragon turns and stalks toward the loud, touristy villain. "That… wasn't… polite…" He grumbles as twin lightning bolts jet from his horns.

At the same time the Mercenaries, seeing Arthur atop their ride out, and Mera choking their leader, open fire on everything and rather unfortunately their tech is rather more advanced than it should be. Red energy bolts fly toward Hal, Arthur, Mera and Rowan. The Atlantean crew opens up in panic fire as well, adding blue bolts flying toward any surfacer they can see in the immediate area (plus Rowan. Cause who knows what that is).

This is a mess…

-

Mera is glaring at the French-speaking man she's slowly strangling with a water-cord when Grendel attacks Rowan, and she turns her attention in that direction just as the man being strangled starts firing wildly. ~ DOWN! ~ she telepathically shouts at the Atlanteans as she (stupidly, maybe, but she's never really dealt with Surfacer weapons) doesn't try to dodge the bullets herself and uses the water around the man's neck to yank him backwards — hopefully with enough force to knock that noisy contraption out of his hands. She then charges toward the group of mercenaries, because she's going to go through them to get to Grendel. The more heads she cracks, the better she'll feel about this whole mess.

-

Green Lantern only restrains his swearing because there are little children with big ears (especially you, Charlie with the freckles, yikes, you look like an Amish jug!) amidst the swimmers who've pulled back. He's very unhappy with the general state of Earth-Sea diplomacy at this point, not to mention the overaggressive French bulldog with the laser gun.

"That's it. No croissant for you!" he cries, green energy forming a massive dish to catch the energy bolts from the mercs, spinning them around to go back at their originators (Y'know, like that scene in Spaceballs where Barf grabs the set of four U-pipes and the Spaceballs fire lasers at him and…oh, never mind!). Anyway, it'll throw the blasts back at the bad guys and, then he's going to follow it up as he expands it to try and make a dome to contain them in. The Atlantean fire is just hitting his forcefield harmlessly, and he assumes that Ariel's parents will have it all sorted out by the time he's disarmed the mercs.

The dragon's on his own. He's a friggin' dragon, have some pride.

-

The Fork is mightier than the Scale would be another name for this tale when it finds its way into the pages of Grendel's private journal. That, or the Pineapple Shorts of Awesomeness, but that would be too Jack Black for his tastes.

With the fork penetrating the scales of his quarry and electricity coursing through the blade and into the beast, Grendel uses it to hoist himself aloft. He touches the safe part of his weapon, and he does so with gloved hands, thus avoiding any chance of being electrocuted himself. The charge is on its maximum setting, more than enough to a kill a human, but considering the dragon's mass, Grendel calculated it would have little effect on him.

He is so preoccupied with his trophy that he almost misses the ship landing on the sand. It takes him a moment to fully grasp the ramifications, and suddenly, the stark reality dawns on him. Laser powered Frenchmen or not, he is severely outmatched in this fight. And somewhere, beneath the mask, a smile forms. This is going to be fun.

He begins by withdrawing his fork from the wound, using it as a lightning rod for the bolts directed at him. He times his leap carefully, managing to twirl his forked blade in such a way as to deflect the lightning bolt attempts back at the dragon while he is still aloft. He really does need to get some shoes, preferably ones made from rubber. But that's not really a viable option at this stage, or is it?

Taking a closer look at the scales as he has a moment between Mera's slaughtering of the Frenchmen is interrupted by the Green Lantern's constructs, Rowen's lightning bolts, and Arthur's ship tossing, he decides that some of Rowen's scales might do nicely. So he tries to cut two of them free with his fork, using it like an X-Acto knife, "oh, where are my manners," he addresses the dragon as he tries to forcibly remove the scales, "my name is Grendel, and I'll be the one slaying you tonight. What's your name?"

-

Aquaman's frown grows deeper and he bellows in Atlantean <Get to the water, use their ship as cover! Choose your targets carefully and above all DO NOT FIRE ON OUR ALLIES!> Arthur has the battlefield bellow down quite nicely, though it's not usually his place to take charge save when he's in the water, he doesn't shirk the responsibility when it arises. He deflects an energy bolt that threatens his torso with the golden trident and ignores one that sizzles past his ear. The sound of the weapons causes Arthur's brow to furrow in familiarity. "MERA!" he shouts out warningly before a single leap carries him the length of space between where he was and where the heart of the mercenaries are. If this is what he thinks it is, they're in greater danger then any of them realize. The trident snakes outward, slicing through the tendril of water near the man's neck, momentarily disrupting his wife's connection to it before the spinning motion sends the weapon's tines through the energy weapon in multiple point ripping it from the man's grasp. A flick of his wrist sends the laser cannon hurtling down the beach several hundred feet, bits of metal and plastic falling from it as it goes. He doesn't seem to mind the fact that in moments Lantern's field will trap him alone inside the bubble with the mercs.

-

The rifle Arthur hurled sails off into the distance and detonates with a force waaaaaaaay out of proportion to its size. The concussive blast drives a wave in ten feet high that breaks on the beach and soaks everything. Similarly the bolts that the Green Lantern redirects simply vaporize four soldiers. Poof. Gone. The rest of the soldiers scatter, but if one has an eye for it they do so in the manner of elite, trained soldiers. The Atlanteans are falling back as Arthur commands but these mercs are quite simply better than they are and their weapons? Well they could probably level half of the nearest town with their rifles.

Rowan grunts as he's robbed of his scales. His colour begins to change and his wings vanish as he releases Air and calls Water. Now he's a dragon of the sea, sleek and made for depths. He eyes the man who just stabbed him with the experience of a man raised in a world at war.

Modern submarines can boil the water in front of them when they use their sonar. Water aspected, Rowan can use sound as a weapon just as potent. He unleashes a sonic blast, not at Grendel, but at the sand in front of him in a wide cone. Eat sandblasting.

Further up the beach the Mercenaries regroup with some cover and begin sending disciplined fire at the Green Lantern and the Sea Royalty. The bolts that miss glass sand and tear holes in steel and concrete. Where did these guys get this stuff?

-

Mera doesn't really have enough time to stop completely when the green energy dome-thing appears between her and the mercenaries, so she slams her hands against the Lantern's construct both to stop her forward momentum and as an expression of angry frustration. She aims her glare up at the flippant man briefly, and then at the mercenaries that Hal allowed to regroup and reorganize. She REALLY needs a Snickers now.

Pushing away from the green dome, Mera makes a harsh grabbing motion at the mercenaries, and one man suddenly starts re-enacting that scene in The Mummy where he's desiccated in a matter of seconds. Collecting above the mercenary is a quickly growing sphere of pure water extracted from that man's body that then grows tentacle-like structures that start lashing out at the others.

-

The nerve of some people! Grendel was all set to make a pair of dragonscale sandals when Rowen changes species, and decides to sandblast him. That's not very sporting of him. With little time or preparation, he tries to use the scales as a shield as he dives through the sand. He'll probably get cut up in the process, but it would have been worse without the scales, and he tries to keep his exposure to a minimum. Rolling as he emerges on the other side of the cone, he grabs the cable that's since loosened from Green Lantern's forcefield and hurls the grapple into the air, hoping to catch him as before. "First floor, Atlanteans, mythological creatures, and particle weapons, going up."

-

Green Lantern takes the grapple around the leg again but, this time, the forcefield latches onto it, holding the rope in an iron grip and actually dragging it in with him as he drops and passes through his own dome, emerging on the other side amongst Aquaman and the mercenaries.

The Lantern that emerges, though, has a massive green suit of armour on, complete with shield and eight foot long mace. He looks over at the Atlantean king going all bad-ass on the Frenchie thieves and laughs, "Oh man, this is so much better than that time my Uncle Paulie took me to Medieval Times. Come get some, bitches!' he shouts, flying at incredible speed into a pack of mercs and swinging his mace, laying out anything that gets in his path.

Oh yeah, and dragging that rope behind him as he goes.

-

Aquaman turns to see the man slowly shrivelling up in on himself and his eyes go wide in shock, "MERA! NO!!" the words are thought every bit as hard as they're shouted, but along with the thoughts come the emotions. The horror of watching her kill a man, the disgust with the ease with which she does it, the sadness at the clear red of blood mingled inside the mercs 'water'. That moment of distraction is all it takes, and a bolt of scarlet energy clips him on the shoulder, shredding his armour in a shower of molten golden scales and pink glowing stone. The force of the impact swings him around and sends him reeling, 1000+ lbs of King stumbling back, the meat of his shoulder cooked and charred in black cracks like old dried mud beneath the sun. If that's not lesson enough about the power of the weapons the mercenaries wield, nothing is. The trident drops from numbed fingers and Arthur reaches up to clutch the smoking ruin of his shoulder. His eyes snap out towards the man who fired the shot and he snarls. Beneath the man's feet the sand begins to churn. You never know what might live beneath the sand of a beach.

-

Rowan hears the scream, then see's Arthur go down. It's surprising how fast a thirty foot lizard can cover that distance and perhaps even more surprising that by the time he gets there he's not a lizard at all but a muddy haired young man with a spear in one hand and what looks like a holographic crossbow projected over the other. He crouches beside Arthur and sends bolts of charged corral toward the remaining mercs…

Of which there are increasingly few. Even if Mera does not in fact kill the man she's currently dehydrating he's most definitively out of the fight. The mercenaries again scatter as Hal's mace catches one of them. Then a second. Reasonable people would at this point surrender. These are not reasonable people and they revere and fear their employer far more than anyone on this beach. The last merc up looks Hal right in the eyes and pulls at a tab on his tactical vest… which the Green Lantern might at this point realize looks suspiciously like it's loaded with some kind of high tech explosive…

-

Mera startles and flinches at Arthur's shout, both audible and mental, her eyes going wide when she sees him take an honestly severe looking injury to the shoulder. The completely desiccated corpse falls to the sand, forgotten in that instant, and the water extracted from the body splattering after it. Even if it caused her husband honest anguish to see the man killed, she doesn't give what used to be a sentient being a second thought, her attention entirely focused on her husband now.

"ARTHUR!" Being stuck on the outside of Hal's Lantern energy dome, all Mera can do is pound on its surface with all of her strength even if doing so is ultimately useless.
-

Grendel managed to latch his grappling hook around the ankle of the Green Lantern, and when the Lantern passed through his energy construct, so did Grendel, which evokes a "fascinating" comment from the crime lord. The ring seems to be the source of his power, and were this another day, he would surely attempt to take it from his benefactor, but between the dragon, the Atlanteans, and the Green Lantern, he is somewhat outnumbered. The French mercenaries seem to be dwindling by the minute, and he hasn't exactly helped matters when the Green Lantern used him as something of a human wrecking ball.

But it did give him the opportunity to snag the fallen trident. During one of the Lantern's passes, he lets go of the grappling line once he's on the outside of the line, and falls towards the beach. He makes his way through the sand noting that the… the dragon is no more, "curiouser and curiouser." Even as he hefts the fallen trident, his mind works out the spatial geometry required for a transformation from a thirty foot dragon to a humanoid being, and wonders if the excess mass was shunted into some kind of subspatial vortex. That might warrant further study at a more convenient time.

Rolling in the sand, he notes that it takes more force than expected to wield the trident. It's far heavier than it should be, but it is not an insurmountable weight. For the briefest of moments, he wields both an electrified fork and trident, but the mystical powers are denied to him. Setting aside his own fork for a moment, he lifts the trident higher up, and attempts to hurl it at Mera like a javelin.

It may not reach her, probably not, but the intention is clear, and before even he knows the results, he's already moving off, heading away from the battle. Though it would be fun to continue this, he is after all, only human, and the big one, the one with the trident, hurled a ship. He likes a challenge, but he's far from insane. Okay, maybe he isn't not sane, but he's quite rational in his insanity.

-

Hal Jordan may have been high in the sky when he flew missions in Afghanistan, but he had plenty of friends on the ground. Nothing lower than a suicide bomber, someone so stupid that they'd waste their own life to murder total strangers for no reason other than a promise in an old book (one that was often in wide dispute and with a vast, sophisticated literary tradition, as his fellow pilot Ephraim Al Shabbazz often reminded Hal when they passed days off playing poker and trying not to think about the next run, the next drone, the next bombing).

Point is, he knew what a suicide vest looked like. Homey don't play that. So the dome pops, dissolving as instantly as if it had never been, the energy seeming to congeal back in, along with the GL's cartoonish armour to wrap around the triggered mercenary before he can detonate.

And, drawing as it often does from the user's subconscious, that energy formed itself into the shape of a classic, old fashioned 4th of July bottle rocket before it launches itself straight up in the air to let its contents detonate, the accompanying lightshow of red, white and blue partially to distract people from the amount of thermal energy Hal was going to have to channel in to turn the human guts being blown apart with the explosion fully into ash.

-

Aquaman is just about done with this today. His jaw clenches as crabs and insects, mostly bugs, numbering in the triple digits begin to swarm up over the mercenary, their small minds all filled with the certain knowledge that he tastes like yummy yummy … whatever. Dead fish most likely. But the instant Grendel snags up the Trident, Arthur grows deadly serious, and his eyes track the man, narrowing to slits. Clearly the man doesn't know the forces he toys with. The bomb vest doesn't worry Aquaman that much, but someone else's hands on the Trident clearly does. He moves just as Grendel releases the weapon for a throw, a ten foot rooster tail of sand kicking up in an arc as the King covers the distance between him and the weapon's path in a sudden burst of speed. His hand closes around the trident's haft just behind the head of the weapon a good ten feet from Mera. He comes to a sliding stop amid a small wall of sand, his face covered in a light sheen of sweat and with one arm dangling uselessly from his shoulder, <Return to the ocean and see to your brothers.> he says in crisp Atlantean to the soldiers who still huddle under nearby cover. When one opens his mouth to protest Arthur shoots him a look and the man's teeth clack together audibly before he can utter a word of protest. Hands his breast plates and the lot of them head back to the water at dead runs. "I'm… going to sit down. Right here." he informs no one as he slides into the sand, leaning back against the mound made by his sliding to a stop, his good arm gripping the weapon as a source of support as he flops down.

-

Rowan's eyes track the departing Grendel but he doesn't pursue. The mercenaries are now all dead… which is a small pity because they can't be interrogated but… well… these things happen. The dragon warrior's spear collapses to a baton the size of a flashlight and he clips it on the belt of his ordinary seeming jeans. He glances around at Hal, seeing the explosion go offshore, and then looks to Mera and Arthur. The threat seems to be over and he's not sure where to go from here…

-

Mera slams her fists against the dome once more and then it abruptly disappears. She has just enough time to register the trident being thrown at her and prepare to try and catch it when Arthur is suddenly THERE, stopping the trident himself and skidding to a halt in front of her. She rushes the remaining couple of feet to sink down on to the sand with him, one hand reaching to hover shakily over the really nasty looking shoulder wound. ~ Rowan? Find a healer. Please. ~

-

They just don't make heroes like they used to, Grendel thinks to himself as he finds that he has enough time to collect his affects on his way out of the fray. He tucks his book, tassel still holding his place, under an arm, and takes his bag, and though he will leave his chair behind, it will not be until after he has triggered a charge with enough energy to destroy any trace of evidence.

With no one pursuing him, he'll have plenty of time to find a quiet place to tend to his wounds, change, and see about finding his daughter. Should any harm have befallen her during his extracurricular activities, Todd Jeffries will suffer a fate that is far worse than death. No one messes with his ward.

-

Green Lantern finds himself approaching the royal couple in their sandy repose, since the situation finally seems to be in hand. "If I may? I may be able to heal some of his injuries and help sustain him," he says. To their ears, the words sound Atlantean, his ring translating for them instantaneously. "Plus, you've had enough of surface people being dicks to you today, so I figure if I do you a solid, it might at least get the balance a little bit back in our favour. Don't hold them against us too much, though. They were working for somebody - perhaps sorting through -their- technology can provide the clues necessary to learn their identity."

As for Grendel…Hal makes a note of what that mask looked like. If that particular individual crosses his path again, he'll have a lot of 'splainin' to do, Lucy.

-

Aquaman's gaze snaps to Rowan, "No." he says firmly, "Go with the others, see to the survivors, the ship, and the dead, in that order. Once that's sorted come find me." he counters Mera's order with his own without worry, the people always come first, and then settles his gaze on his wife. His jaw is set and his eyes are firm, someone is rocking King Face. Hal's approach causes Arthur to look up and he answers in clear easy American English, "No. I'll be fine in time, I heal quickly." which is usually true, but this is the sort of thing that will likely scar, third degree burns that cooked part of his flesh away. The fact that he's coherent is frankly shocking. "We appreciate the assistance, but this is an Atlantean matter, you needn't concern yourself." not to mention he suspects he already knows who the soldiers belong to. It's why he was worried for his wife before.

-

Rowan nods. The crew of the ship may not know him but they do know that he was actually talking to their King. Also that he turned into two types of dragon so when he tells them to head back seaward and he'll accompany them they don't argue. Which is wise.

The police are finally starting to move in, having been calling for military support during the brawl that has now ended too quickly for anyone to arrive. They're not going to want to arrest anyone. Hal has a reputation, Arthur and Mera are at least recognizable if you have Google and a smart phone and… no one's dumb enough to try to take Rowan in. Mostly they just want to know what the hell happened. It may or may not be a long afternoon for one or more of the three people left on the beach.


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