A Vampire Walks Into A Bar

Summary:
February 27, 2015: Vampire hunts vampire, and a robot and an alien woman get caught up in the fray

Metropolis - Suicide Slum - The Run

The storm-curse cast by Orm of Atlantis has created a pall of darkness in Metropolis which cannot be pierced by any sunlight. While it lasts, the Vampire subjects of Mary (Queen of Blood) have been frolicking.

The Run is a small dive on a small side street in Suicide Slum.


Characters

NPCs

  • Andrew Bennett, Vampire NPC emitted by Roy Harper (Arsenal) player
  • various baby bats

Mood Music:
[*<http://insert.video.or.music.link.here>]


Still trying to keep up with the vampires in this darkness, in what -should- have been two o clock in Metropolis and was, instead, pitch-blackness, a man, dressed simply in jeans and an open-vested leather jacket, and nothing else, was following the trail.

Pushing his way into a bar in what, as far as the old one noted, was called 'Suicide Slums' in this city, Andrew Bennett sniffed the air once, twice, and sighed. "Hello, people," he greeted the various people at the bar.

"Hi, grandpa!" one cheeky man hooted back, baring vampiric fangs as he turned towards the four hundred years old vampire.

Andrew frowned. "Mary told you I hated being called that, did she?"

"GET HIM!"

Moments later, any passers-by would have seen an window explode outwards, followed by one, then another form, which quickly morphed into wolf form, landed, and dove back in.


It's dark and Hell is hot. Alright, Metropolis really wasn't hell but it was starting to get that feeling. Monsters upon bridges, terrorist attacks, railways being bashed and the Man of Steel getting his brains beat in by some dude in a super-suit. Yeah. Metropolis was beginning to look a lot like Hell.

Flying away from rescuing an old couple, her need for battle not yet abated, she happened to fly over the scene, a little bit of luck by her side as the shattering of glass draws her attention. A downward swoop, heavy flap of her wings, and she bolts at a downward arch toward the supposed confrontation at hand.

If she doesn't get a fight? Heads. Will. Roll.


Mike Drakos is not someone for whom the word 'noir' would normally be used. That's because he normally makes it clear that he's a robot, and a mutant, by having eyes that glow even in daylight, and gold-plated skin, and a definitely artificial-looking movement, paradoxically modeled after Mr. Data, a human playing android on a TV show 20 years ago.

Today (tonight?) Mike is noir. Black trench coat, black pants, black shirt, and lest we forget, black skin. Not dark brown. Black. He is darker than the night. And he's noir, and here, because he was making a delivery. Seems that someone broke into a church in this unnaturally dark neighborhood and took a whiz on the supply of unconsecrated wafers, making them unsuitable for their normal use. His Mom found out - and when your mother is a priest, who knows that you sometimes do that 'superhero' thing, you get Mom Calls telling you to deliver some stuff. So he did that, and now he's walking through the neighborhood to see just what IS going on here.

It's not pretty. It landed in front of him and turned into a wolf and jumped back into the bar.

"So this is where things are happening," he says. His demon fighting chassis is back in New York, though. So he's going to have to improvise. If it comes to that.

He walks through the door, dodging whatever punch might be thrown. What kind of a place is this? He doesn't even notice the bird-woman until she appears in the window.


Inside the bar, it was chaotic. A mass of fur flying, as wolves leaped onto what seemed like a quickly shifting mass of mist, getting in each other's way as they attempted to get at what they were after.

The new arrivals, particularly the woman who bolts through the window, gets a "Wanna-be superheroes! Get them!"

Leaving no doubt whatsoever about their intentions, one woman leaps for Mike, shifting in mid-air from female to a large hulking werewolf, almost all fangs and talons, ready to tear.

Another leaps, shifting in mid-air to a large hawk, diving at Shayera.


Through the window is her goal, her eyes only for the mist.. the same mist that she had seen back at the scene of the crime. Her hands strike down to grasp at her mace, detaching it from her person, her head turning to spare a quick glance towards the darkened Mike, one brow raised in slight confusion.

That.. was different. Oh well. He's next!

Their commentary proved most helpful, signifying their attack, her mace smacked against her opposite hand as the Nth fires to life with electricity. She didn't spare words, she was ready. Adrenaline firing to life yet again, coursing through her veins, a sardonic smile drawn across her lips as she rears back and..

*TING!*

BLACK HAWK DOWN!

The flight was stopped right then and there due to the size of the tavern, landing hard upon her feet as she prostrates herself within the middle, her wings fanning out like an avenging angel, for bad deeds come home to roost.


"Werewolf?" Mike says. "THERE wolf," and he steps forward and into the leap, one hand moving to hook her by the top of her wolf-snout while the rest of him applies a quarter-ton-force gentle palm tap to her abdomen. It shouldn't kill her, because the movement will translate into rotation, but it might knock the wind out of her as she flips end-over-end and is guided to the ground on her back. The nose-grip is to keep her from rotating around to save herself from the back-flop.

wham

"Hi," he says. "Anyone seen a black BMW? I parked it at the end of the block and it seems to have wandered away."


The mist shifts back, not into a red haired woman, but into a man, leather jacket and with a white streak in his hair, barechested, as he grasps a vampire by the throat. "What -is- Mary's ultimate plan…? The sunless darkness cannot last forever… she doesn't have -that- sort of power, or she would have used it since then. Who is she working with now…?"

The werewolves scatter, two of their numbers down, pulling back to the edges of the room, as the intruders move closer to the middle.

The leather-clad man, bemused, can only respond, "Towed away. Take it up with the constables."


Silence. Shayera holds that mantle true to form. With the hawk down, her gaze falls upon the now swirling mist, her brows lowering in a slight fit of anger, the band of her weapon slowly unraveling with a scratch and slight tug of her fingers. She wraps it around a few digits, drawing the mace back to launch right towards the back of the vampires head.

She knew no Mary, she could have been a priestess of the sun who sought to eradicate those like him. So names, faces, none of this mattered.


"Constables? Oh, I see, someone's decided they can make their own little pocket of some-other-country here. No. This is still America, dark-at-noon or not. We don't have constables, we have a police force, and my car was parked legally. Now if someone wanted to buy it from me, that would be different, but unlawful taking, that won't fly here," Mike says, petulant.

He looks towards whatever is at the bar serving whatever passes for drinks, and runs a fast sensor scan. Real werewolves have heartbeats and are above normal human temperatures. These are different, cooler, but still seem to be alive. That mist-to-human keeps trying to pretend it doesn't show on his visual scanners, but the polarized-light and … hello, that's a freaking weird mace. What is that metal?

And, she's throwing it.

"HEY!" he yells. He puts an effort into making that projectile STOP; it's not entirely magical; he is a mutant with power to control metal, even though it's weird enough that he can barely get a grip on it. Slippery.

"Do you ALWAYS try to splatter people's brains before you're introduced?"


Only the withdrawn breaths of the watching werewolves warns the leather-jacketed man that something was happening, and automatically, instinctively, he goes -mist-, and the mace passes through, the instinct saving the centuries-old vampire in a way that the new-born vampires could not copy immediately.

And then the mist reforms, followed by an extremely strong grip, aiming to grab hold of the mace. "Are you -insane-, human? In the middle of being surrounded by -vampires-?" Andrew snarls, fangs bared. "You have little idea what you're facing here, do you?"


That was strange. The Nth snapped away from the band that held against her fingers, making her draw-back of the weapon non-existent. Her eyes dart towards Mike, squinting in a hint of anger as she calls out, "YES." Why introduce yourself? Why have tea with the presumed enemy? Why not Zoidberg?

But her mace was caught and she was called human? The gloves were off. It was almost worse than calling her a chicken, or an over-sized bird, or as the Amazons seem to say.. 'Valkryie Bitch.' A hand is drawn upright to smack slightly against her helmet, her head tossed back as she lets out a cool, breath of air.

"Of course I don't." Shayera answers coolly, allowing the metal gauntlet she wears to scrape down her mask, right towards the emblem upon her chest. She wanted to toss the gauntlets down, but.. disarmed (not!) as she was, she was going to bare-knuckle them all to death.

"And I don't care." She parts her legs into a stance, her hands resting upon her thighs as she gestures towards the lot of them with a come at me motion. -All- of them. "Bring me your dead."


Mike… can clearly 'see' the vampire-guy when he uses his non-mechanical sense of perception. This bothers him. This means it's one of a small subset of possible things, and the teeth and the mist and oh yeah, the use of the word 'vampires' all suggests he's probably a 'vampire'. Mike hasn't ever met a vampire, and he's pretty sure that if one of them bit him it would turn into a question of ontology, theology, and possibly necromancy to determine whether it would take any benefit from what he uses as blood, since cells composed of nanomachines made of carbon meta-materials and various metals are not normal human body parts; the question is, did they actually feed on that or the spiritual vitality of the entity, and Mike's got a surplus of that. He uses it to yank on that mace, because while he didn't really intend to let it hit Mr. Foggybritches, he also doesn't intend to let Mr. Foggybritches KEEP it.

A faint cloud of dust falls from his body, swirling in vaguely visible arcs around him; it charges with electricity to create a working Magic Circle, useful for keeping out certain kinds of evil nasty; combined with his inner kinetic drive systems it also should work as a force-field, once or twice, if he times the field-boost right.

"Uhm. Except for the wolf-people, they're already dead. Sorta. You really don't know what you're dealing with, do you?"


"They're not -completely- dead," Andrew corrects, as he yanks back from the mace, making sure to put enough distance between him and the mace-woman as he confronts the vampires. "If you can find the one who sired -this- group, we can turn the rest back to what they were. Kill the sire before forty eight hours are up. How long has it been…?"

"We're -not- telling you, grandpa!" hoots one of the creatures.

"Wonderful," Andrew sighs, slumping his shoulders. "Well then… find the sire… who's probably hiding -somewhere-… and you know, if you're going to take my head off, at least -wait- till this is all over."

And then Andrew shifts into a large hulking cross between man and wolf, and moves, impossibly fast, into the fray, as the vampires shift to half-wolf or half-bat and begin attacking, two to a person. Well, except for Andrew, who seems to be drawing the most ire of the lot.


Shayera's eyes grow wide as the dark man takes her mace. Make a note: Forcibly take it from him later. Even exiled from her people, she knew to never let the Nth get into anothers hands. This would probably anger her more against the man who seemingly attempted to help.

As the information was spared, a wary look goes towards Andrew. She's heard those instructions before, but the need to battle outweighed all reason as two vampires immediately jump into the fray.

She didn't use weapons this time, blocking with fists and ducking, her moves rapid fast; taking on a boxers gait with a twice punch to the kidneys and an uppercut to fill jaw with Nth.


"Find the sire. Right," Mike says, spawning two added parallel copies of his mind in his computer brain. One handles keeping the body working correctly, accepting requests for spare parts (like sensor moths). One goes on-track to find the sire: a cloud of tiny black moths pours out of his mouth and into the room, sniffing with their antennae for the unique scent of burning blood and magic in the same place. Werewolves have a different stink to them than vampires - their blood isn't burning - and a few moths settle somewhere on each of the vampires or proto-vampires as they reach, others searching further into the place in case the Boss is here, and hiding in another room.

The third mind, the one with the majority of his power in it, begins studying the vampires. Two attackers. Mike's approximately 'hella' strong physically but then so are actual vampires. But if these ones are baby bats, then there's potentially interesting information. He lets one of the two attacking him come inside his Circle, and starts looking at the metal inside it: sodium and iron in the blood, and how it feels different from the kind of blood that's still forming in the spleen and the bones. Incidentally, while he looks at this, he's holding it in mid-air with metallokinesis, using the calcium in the bones primarily. It might be screaming; this doesn't feel good at all.

Meanwhile, back at the one running the body: the one outside the circle gets punched four times in a quarter second as it crosses the line. It may be able to reduce the damage, but it's not going to feel good either.


These 'baby bats', as Mike put it, were still learning the range of their abilities. So far, they'd resorted to full wolf or full humans, and the part-bats part-wolves were barely able to wield their talons appropriately, holding their forms just long enough before losing control and reverting to human or creature. Still, they hit hard, and their strength -wasn't- in question. It was wielding that strength that was something, and they hit -hard-. Not purposefully, the way Andrew was in aiming to break joints and bones so that they couldn't use them, but in humanoid fashion, more for pain infliction than -breakage- the way Shayera's blows were.

And while Shayera was able to keep her foes on their heels, Mike's foes were being kept back well enough, screaming, but a desperate maneuver by one dashing werewolf, unable to get out of the way in time from the infliction, runs smack into Mike, hard.

As the vampires assess the situation, more and more start focusing more on the ones proven to be able to do serious damage, learning as they go that while Andrew couldn't piled on, the non-immortals most certainly -could-. And yes, they were aiming to bite, to claw, to turn them into one of -them-…


Proud woman she was, Shayera continued to fight, not ejecting her armor, seeing as it was swallowed and taken by the man, but fighting with fist and claw all the same. They begin to swarm, one grasping upon the wing to bite the appendage where the thick meat lay, Shayera turning hard enough for the teeth to rip out a thick chunk. An exposed arm gets bitten, the head of the vampire smashed with a gauntlet and tossed aside, foot striking out to plant boot to the face to the other as she spins, wings flailed to gain the advantage.

And like the Amazons she's trained with, she continued, through blood and pain, until each one of them laid upon the ground curled and practically in tears from the thick of the fight.


"You're way too overconfident, Drakos," his sifu said. "You think you are invulnerable, just because you're part machine."

That was back when Mike was seventeen, studying pakua kung-fu, and only a third of him was mechanical. It wasn't a lot of fun then. His teacher demonstrated to him just how invulnerable he was NOT, and Mike ended up with four carbon fiber ribs as a result, as his power eagerly REPLACED his original parts. He dedicates a fourth consciousness stream to remembering the whole humiliating debacle while he is knocked to his knees, and the distraction of having too many half-wolves and half-bats trying to bite him… seriously, he doesn't SMELL like a human, why are they… baby bats. Right. Anyway they made him drop the one he was scanning as they started to actually tear up his clothes, and broke his skin in places. That's annoying and takes work to repair quickly, because he needs all his pseudoblood inside him… oops, that one got a taste. And, it's barfing. HAH! That'll show you to bite a man with silver iodide in his blood.

Mike(2) finishes the data analysis; he got most of what he needed to know.

"The ones in here are a day and a half old," he says, "if the decay rates on the blood are calibrated right."

Meanwhile, a few moths locate a … hamster cage? In a BAR? How very "cute" — it's some sort of themed decoration, with hamster crawl tubes along one wall. Races every Sunday. Gross. AND, there's no hamsters in it. There is a rat. A rat that smells of burning blood.

Now, if Mike can get out from under the Batpile to let the hawk woman and the temporary ally vamp know where it is.


The barfing vampire manages to squeak out a warning, but not before it's gotten its teeth broken by Shayera. So naturally, it was -much- easier to keep the vampire pile on the non-tasty humanoid, and shift its attention to that succulent redhead.

And while Mike locates … something, Shayera was getting to be the main course of the buffet.

The blood trickles from Shayera's hand, drawing -more- vampires to her like shark to chum. Grasping, grabbing, trying to keep her from moving, they seek any opportunity to bite, more to convert them. Even if she tasted -alien-, there was -something- enough…

And then Andrew is at her side, ripping apart the vampires aside. "WHICH ONE?" he shouts, observing the blood.


It doesn't stop. It felt like it was never ending. The sting of the bites that continually rip against her wing, her blood drawing those close to hunger for more, even one tries to avoid the fray of fist and foot slides underneath just to catch a flung drop.

"FIND IT AND KILL IT!"

Shayera was bitten, many times over, and for just that one little moment she wishes she had blood just like Mike's. To see the one retch, was fantastic.

As Andrew joins her in the fight, she takes advantage of the situation, tossing one into his direction as another one takes a heaping chunk out of her shoulder. This one was gripped by the hair, and with a turn of her hips and a follow through of her arm, is slid towards Mike and his field.


"Don't TAZE me Bro!" — that plaintive whine was the subject of an internet meme for a while, the fifteen minutes of virtual fame for a man who had made the mistake of annoying some self-important security dick, and thus because of his apparent moment of weakness, he was mocked while the security dick was lauded. Mike plays that back at 11, as a single warning, before his body erupts in spines, long, thin, silver-lined spines that conduct a remarkable amount of alternating current for a few seconds. That's going to leave marks, possibly a few broken bones, maybe a punctured liver.

It gives him time to stand up, and a layer of silver flows over him in place of the black skin that was there before. Moon-soaked silver, not a friend of werewolf OR vampire. Sadly just enough of it to coat his skin, not enough to make a REAL weapon. He slams a flat hand against the one flying at him, as his circle comes back up around him.

"The rat in the hamster cage," he says, and fires off four flechettes at it, the CRACK as they break the sound barrier audible … there's a little silver in there, not as much as he'd like. The flechettes are iron, and magnesium. The magnesium, when he knows it's hit the rat … ignites. Burning. Ultraviolet light. You ever see a vampire with a suntan?


While Andrew was tending to the hawkwoman. seeking the one who bit her, Mike's shout draws his attention, and he turns, the sooner to face the rat cage. "What…?"

And then the unearthly howl from the rat, echoes through the rest of the vampires.

One by one, the vampires shift from shaggy undead form to living, gasping forms, some of who promptly pass out unconscious, others of who were dripping from injuries inflicted.

Breaking free, Andrew looks back at Shayera, and then at Mike. "Good. At least -this- group have been freed," he says, after crossing the bar to pick up the crispy fried rat corpse.

As it turns to dust, the remains of a vampire, Andrew regards them. "Were you here, after the vampires as well, or is this one of those heroic things you humans go on about…?"


Turns out, the one who bit her didn't need to be killed. The sire, the main vampire created a chain effected that cured Hawkgirl of her potential fright. While she was thankful, it still hurt like the dickens and she was glad to have put fist to skin and bone through it all. Her Nth, will care for her wounds, but she was tired, the loss of blood enough to make one winded when it came down to it.

Hands upon her knees, her eyes closing briefly, she answers nary a question or utters a word towards Andrew. What was her main concern? Her goddamned mace.

"Return it to me or suffer the might of the Amazonian Princess and the Valkryie Bitch who calls her friend." And.. her hand was held out, expectantly. She'll blow this place to hell and back if she doesn't retrieve it.


Mike senses the change - the humans who were longer-infected, might have a bit of anemia, because some of their blood is suddenly gone, changed into some weird kind of ash that their immune systems immediately attack. The mace… Mike can feel it where one of the wolves had shoved it under a table, and he pulls it out, floating it to Shayera. There may still be werewolves here, but the man is coated in moonsilver and they probably know that from its smell.

"Believe it or not, this was just their bad luck. I came in because there was a fight and I figured someone might know where my car went," he says. Moths swirl up and fly back to him, melting into his skin. He looks at his torn clothes.

"Great. Semi-indecent exposure."


Andrew Bennett shows no particular fear of Mike, perhaps because he'd grown so old that fear of the ordinary vampiric tales wasn't occuring to him.

Regarding Shayera, Andrew shakes his head ruefully. "You'll be all right, then. The man… or machine, whatever manner of being he is, killed the sire." Sniffing the air, Andrew nods. "They're free, for now."

Turning briefly, Andrew nods at Mike. "I could have used you… keeping up with Mary's conversions have been quite a chore. She's producing more and more vampires faster than I can eliminate them."


"That thing is not real." She states of Mike. "But he is brilliant and I thank him all the same." She stands now, mace reached out and plucked from the air, carefully attached and afixed to her side as she gives both of the men a pained look. "This is out of control. It is the suggestion from my standpoint that this one does stick around." She gestures towards Mike again, turning her back to both of the men to lean against the bar. A bottle of whiskey was soon snatched from it's overturned position, pop capped with a flick of her thumb, deep swigs taken to ease the pain and bring out a burn.


"I am so real. Also, you beat up one of my employees on your first day on Earth so I should be annoyed with you, but Wonder Woman vouched for you," Mike replies, gesturing at the pile of barstools along one wall and restoring them (albeit the worse for wear) along the front of the bar.

"You can call me Metal, or Mike, whichever you want. I'll stick around for another few hours, but I have other obligations. I might be able to come back, if you find this Mary and need help with her, but I can't promise it'll be as easy as this mess was."

He'll need to bring a more appropriate chassis, of course. It's kind of perplexing to Mike that he's become a supernatural-trouble troubleshooter, given that he's, y'know, a robot.


"I have seen enough wonders to not scoff at the notion that a machine could act as human," Andrew informs Shayera. "It is indeed out of control. We need to stop -Mary- from creating more from these…" The long-lived vampire sweeps his hands at the unconscious and the shivering humans. "She seeks to take advantage of those with no hope, no reason to live, and give them undying power so that she can feed on the rest of the world."

Addressing Mike, Andrew asks a simple question: "Can you find the largest swarm?"


Shayera cuts a gaze at Mike, just the mere mention of that meatsuit had her hackles raised. She was still going to war against Thangar, her people.. how they betrayed her…

The glass snaps and shatters within her hand, her eyes remaining upon Mike as she shakes out her hand, a slight nod is given to him in greeting as she cuts an eye towards Andrew. "And I am Shayera. Shayera Hol." Refusing to take up the mantle of Hawkgirl just yet, her jaw tenses as she listens to the information about Mary, a critical gaze given to the old vampire.

"And when this is over. All of it." She starts, never-minding the fact that he questions Mike first. "What of you?" She means for him to die, of course. For why should one without the other?


"I was afraid you'd ask that," Mike says. He sighs. "Yeah. I think I can. This is going to hurt."

Three of the barstools float into the air, and begin to peel apart into raw metal, chrome plating, and random bits of wood, that begin to smoke and then peel off into fine carbon wisps… the robot man opens his mouth, and the metal parts flow inside, along with the carbon, and then he exhales a stream of small black moths. They flit out through the open window into the skies, leaving behind the hollow shell of the robot-man.

"I smell them," his voice says, "swarms. I'm following them…"

It takes longer than ten minutes. The largest area is there, the edge of Chinatown, Suicide Slum, such as it was. The old building had been a theatre back in the days of vaudeville, upgraded and turned into an opera house, then sold to Fox and slightly refurbished, and then abandoned when television killed movie theatres; a fundamentalist church bought the place and used it for a while as their glass-and-crystal palace to money was being built, then it was turned into a mall, but that failed. Now it's a vampire den.

"The Gardner-Fox building," the robotic voice says, and the moths stream back, back, gradually filtering. The body reconstitutes inside as moths fly in the open mouth.

"So, that was just a little creepy, huh?" he says, pouring a whiskey. Fuel. CHUG.


"Thank you…" Andrew says to both of them. And then … fading to mist, he sweeps out the door in a hurry.


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