Shadows and Spiders

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Shadows and Spiders

Post by Penumbra on Fri Aug 12, 2016 3:04 am

A few tourist muggings, a pair of gas station jobs, that was enough of those, Penumbra decided, looking at his reflection in the thick glass windows of the small bank he was passing by. It was time for something a bit bigger. Not too big, he didn't need to draw attention to himself, but the pitiful cashflow he was bring in was irritating him. This place would do the job nicely. Get in, grab a few thousand dollars in cash, get out, no one the wiser. He smiles to himself, and his reflection, and moves on.

That night, he arrives back there, wearing all black. Even in the Alexandrite Shopping district, it slowed down at night, though it never entirely stopped bustling. The bank was dark and empty, but there was almost always someone walking down the street, and the small corner store next to it was still making a slow but steady business. If he was any judge, that was perfect. Active enough that anyone noticing movement in the bank wouldn't think anything of it, but empty enough that there was less chance of someone who would notice it was wrong being there.

Stubbing out his cigarette on the brick wall, he leans back further, enveloping himself in the shadows, sinking out of view, and then... he's gone. And there, inside the bank, leaning against one of the counters, just visible through the window from where he'd been resting across the street. He stays frozen for a second, waiting for sounds of alarm, either from an alarm, or the single security guard patrolling the second floor. Nothing.

Grinning, Penumbra sets out silently through the bank, heading up the stairs to get into a better position to watch the guard. Once he has his back turned, he can shadow walk forward again to right behind the guard and take him out. Then he'll have free reign on the bank until he's got the money.
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Arachna on Fri Aug 12, 2016 6:01 am

Without a single pane of glass broken, Penumbra would manage to avoid tripping the alarm, but that was only the first of his problems. While he was scouting the place for his hit he hadn't realized the eight legged heroine to be lurking far out of his sight and watching him in action. That very same woman was now quickly approaching the bank he'd just entered even as he walked his way up the stairs. It was almost time to strike and, even as the man focused his attention on the guard in charge of keeping the bank secure, Arachna's spidery leg was casually scraping down the glass of the door.

It was as the guard was just turning back to the small security setup the small bank was able to afford that he noticed in the camera that there was a man standing just down the hall from him, looking like he was preparing for an ambush. The burly man barked out a rough shout, already reaching for his firearm as he turned back around to chase the guy down and take him out.

Just as Penumbra made his move, he'd hear the very distinctive sound of glass breaking from the first floor followed by the alarms being set off from the loud noise.
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Penumbra on Wed Aug 17, 2016 1:54 am

Great, everything was going to hell at once. "Fuck!" Risking a quick glance back in the direction of the sound of breaking glass, Penumbra swore under his breath. Typical fucking heroes, always interfering. He'd have to take care of the guard first though, or he'd be stuck facing some mutant freak and a man armed with a gun at the same time.

Turning back to face the guard, Penumbra focuses on the spot behind him, vanishing into the shadows again. Ha, that'd throw the guard off! Spinning as soon as he reemerges, he chops his hand down at the back of the guard's neck. Not a killing blow by any means, but definitely a stunning one.
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Arachna on Wed Aug 17, 2016 3:31 am

Just as the wannabe bank robber vanished, the guard fired a shot, only narrowly missing him. He looked about quizzically before a hard chop hit him in the back of the neck.

"Gah!" He shouted in pain and stumbled to his knees, but didn't quite go down. He was, however, slow to get up from the hard hit to his neck. "Son of a bitch... You think you're Jackie Chan or some shit?" He groaned, attempting to get up off his knees.

By the time the guard was trying to regain his bearings, Penumbra would already hear the heavily insectoid skittering of the oncoming threat ascending the stairs. It was coming quickly, but appeared rather unhurried in its ascent. Arachna thrived on the fear and anticipation of her prey much more than the actual fight. Even if he'd taken the guard out in a single blow there was no way he'd have been able to loot the bank before they met.
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Penumbra on Wed Aug 17, 2016 10:10 pm

He didn't need to loot the bank before they met, not when he was reasonably confident he could stop her. "Or some shit, yeah." Instead, he grins, and kicks the guard again while he's down, and picks up the pistol.

Instead of moving directly to fight the irritatingly appeared hero, Penumbra turns to look at the screens in the security office. It hasn't hard to find the button to turn the alarms off, which at least would stop more people from turning up, and then he locates Arachna on the screens. If she was heading up the stairs...

From the upper floor you could see almost all of the ground floor, but from the ground floor the view was much worse, especially with no lights on. Out of Arachna's view, he vanishes again, appearing back on the first floor, and hurries as quickly and quietly as he can to the stairs to flank her.
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Arachna on Thu Aug 18, 2016 3:23 am

By the time Penumbra had kicked the guard, taken his pistol and moved to flank Arachna by teleporting back down to the ground level and moving back up the stairs, Arachna had made it up to find the hallway empty aside from the painfully coughing, but relatively unharmed guard.

"Where is he?" Arachna would question quickly, keeping an eye on her surroundings both front, sides and back to make sure he wouldn't so easily sneak up on her. It helped that she was aware of his abilities ahead of time, having studied him a bit ahead of time as well as watching him teleport into the bank from afar.

"Vanished," the guard groaned out. "Took my pistol... Watch yourself. He's a sneaky mother fucker..."

"I know..." Arachna responded, her eyes narrowing sharply in annoyance. This power would compliment her Legion quite nicely, but to do that she needed to prove her superiority as well as uphold her part as a superhero to keep her facade in place. Before any of that, however, she had to find the sneaky little teleporter. Movement abilities were always such a nuisance.

Penumbra, in the meantime, would find his journey up the staircase mildly impeded if he threw caution to the wind in his attempt to quickly get the jump on the arachnid female as he'd continue to run into nearly invisible threads of webbing, not much of anything that would actually bar his way, but certainly unpleasant, sticky somethings getting all over him as he moved up and collected more on his person.
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Penumbra on Thu Aug 18, 2016 3:47 am

Webs, tch. He should have expected something this gross from a spider-thing like that. Frowning after running into the first of the webs, Penumbra backs off for a moment. He couldn't tell if the webs were poisoning, permanently sticky, entirely normal webs, or something else, so he wasn't going to risk getting more on himself.

So she was trying to set a trap... Well, two could play at that game. Retreating a bit further down the stairs, he adjusts his grip on the gun and takes careful aim, taking out the camera's looking down onto the stairway and the main floor with several shots. If he was stuck here, she'd have to deal with being blind.
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Arachna on Thu Aug 18, 2016 8:03 pm

Arachna's eyes immediately darted toward the stairs as he tripped the first of her webs, waiting calmly for the next in line to be tripped only to discover that no such thing happened. He was a teleporter, however, so she couldn't exactly dismiss the possibility that he planned to simply bring himself up to the top of the steps without passing any more of her barriers.

He loudly and blatantly announced this to not be the case though as he fired several shots from the ground floor and she glanced back to the security screens to see camera after camera blink out. He was removing her advantage of safe eyes on the bottom floor. Obviously he intended for their confrontation to be played out there. Arachna, however, would put her own spin on things since he'd taken to trying to put her at a disadvantage.

All at once the security monitors would be turned off, eliminating the light source emanating from the screens and plunging the area into much darker shadows. "So I've heard you're a fan of the dark. Here... let's make things more comfortable for the both of us..." she purred with confidence. Clinging to the walls, Arachna would move in a practiced fashion, staying far out of the light as she moved to eliminate the night time lights one after the other with a single strike each. She wasn't stupid, immediately racing away from the area so she wouldn't get hit with any lucky shots if he chose to try to take potshots at the general area she'd have to be to remove the light. In a short time, the entire bank would be plunged into darkness, the only illumination coming from the faint street light on the sidewalk outside.

She was taking the risk that, despite being a shadow teleporter, he likely didn't have the ability to see in the dark. He could teleport literally anywhere in the bank at will now, but being unable to see his opponent would mean that he'd have no idea where and when he should be moving position. She, however, possessed the eyes of a spider and could see the entire area perfectly as if she were looking about in broad daylight.


Last edited by Arachna on Thu Aug 18, 2016 8:32 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Penumbra on Thu Aug 18, 2016 8:25 pm

"I suppose someone like you could see in the dark." He called up to her in response. Her intentions were clear enough after the second light went out, so Penumbra stood his ground, watching the lights. Third light... There wasn't more than brief flickers of motion visible as she took them out, but that was enough to get a good guess as to where she'd be positioned to take the fourth one out from. Aiming ahead of her, he waited until she was striking the fourth light, and then opened fire, sending three quick shots out, one to where he thought she'd be, one nearby, and the third one towards the fifth light to hit her if she'd already started moving.
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Arachna on Thu Aug 18, 2016 8:49 pm

Of course Arachna had no intention of being predictable. The second the shots rang out her body simply dropped limply from its position, letting the fall take her well out of the possibility of any of his shots having any chance of landing a hit. The webbing she'd attached to the wall as an anchor softened her fall enough for her to land with agility and immediately flip away and back into the deep darkness she'd already created in a portion of the bank.

She was counting the shots he was making carefully, anticipating that by now he'd used at least half his ammo capacity or more on shooting out the cameras and taking three potshots at her in quick succession.
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Penumbra on Fri Aug 19, 2016 3:15 am

Tch. Penumbra frowned up at the ceiling again. She'd have to go for the next light still, but this was a waste of time. He had a better way of doing this, that wouldn't use up any more bullets. Looking upwards at the top of the stairs, he shifted position so that he was facing sideways, his hand holding tight to his belt, leaving a loop made from his arm and side, and then he waited until she took out the next light, and then teleported.

Teleported into the shadows covering the railing. He couldn't see past it for a spot on the ground, but he positioned it so that he appeared with his arm looped around the railing, holding himself up. It was easy enough to climb over it and onto the second floor, avoiding the webs laid out on the stairs. Had she noticed? The gun was out pointing ahead of him, his other hand held above it and out slightly, to shield from any webs shot at it.
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Arachna on Sat Aug 20, 2016 12:32 am

Arachna noticed his sudden disappearance from the bottom floor as she destroyed another light and skittered off toward the next. She'd address his sudden absence in due time. It didn't appear that he'd fled outside, which could only mean that he teleported his way back up onto the second floor again, bypassing her webbing on the stairs. It was the only place soon to have lighting as she finished her work with one bulb in the far corner and more if he decided to flip the security screens back on, though thanks to his own actions they'd only be displaying static for the moment.

The extremely patient sort, Arachna would allow the clever man to stew in his own juices up there huddled in the light while she began to slowly and carefully spin a web that encompassed the entire first floor. It would take awhile since she was ensuring that she used enough of her webbing to be capable of snaring him up in it if he ever so chose to flee back to the first floor once she was finished.
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Penumbra on Mon Aug 22, 2016 6:40 pm

That would have worked quite well, probably, if Penumbra hadn't gone back up to the second floor with a specific plan. Instead of stewing, he waited just long enough to confirm that she wasn't rushing back upstairs, and then made his way over to the wounded security guard.

Starting off with slamming the man's head against the ground to make sure he was stunned, Penumbra flipped him over and cuffed his hands behind his back, then leaned him against the wall. "Hey Charlotte! Little hero, why don't you back off, you wouldn't want your friend up here to get hurt... anymore than he already has been, would you?"
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Arachna on Mon Aug 22, 2016 6:57 pm

"Ugh..." Arachna sounded incredibly annoyed, not even bothering to stop in her work as the man called out his obvious threat to her. "You must be pretty desperate to be so obnoxiously cliche. Kill him. See if I care. It's not as though the SF marks us down for failing to save an innocent security guard. He took the job knowing the risks."

Some would consider this reverse psychology, but honestly Arachna didn't much care which choice the powered criminal took. So far as Arachna was concerned, Penumbra had just locked himself into a lose-lose situation. If he chose to kill the security guard he was now holding hostage he'd lose his only bargaining chip. If he chose to let him live Arachna wouldn't accept the man's applicability as a bargaining chip in any case.
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Penumbra on Thu Aug 25, 2016 5:07 pm

Penumbra blinked, then burst out laughing. "Really? What kind of hero are you?" Still chuckling, he adjusted his grip on the gun. "Well, if you're sure..." He waited just long enough for her to say something if she had a change of heart, then shifted the gun down to shoot him in the chest. It wasn't an immediately lethal shot, instead leaving the man gasping and moaning in pain, but if Arachna didn't get him help soon he'd be dead.

Still, that was enough of this. Even if he took out the spider-bitch there wouldn't be enough time for him to get away with any money, it was time to get out of here. Scooping up the man's nightstick, Penumbra headed back to the stairs, using the baton to clear a path through the webbing.

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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Arachna on Thu Aug 25, 2016 10:07 pm

"I'm a realist. What can I say? You can't save everyone!" As the shot rang out, Arachna cringed a little, but the groaning from the guard told her that he hadn't been killed... at least not instantly. She'd kind of expected Penumbra to go for an execution style to the head, but apparently he still thought that he could use the guard as leverage. What a pity...

He'd find the webbing at the bottom of the stairs to be much thicker and more persistent. It would take a lot more work than the thin strands on the stairs had required. As well, any windows to the outside were covered in a foggy sheet of the stuff.

Not long after he'd stepped off the stairs, Arachna slipped out of the shadows beside them, two of her arachnid legs slipping under his arms in an attempt to hold him in place as she pulled him close against her body.

"And just where do you think you're going, Nightwalker?" she chuckled before producing a phone from a small web pouch at her side. Everyone needed a good cell phone in this day and age, especially a superhero! A quick dial later and she was speaking a quick line into the phone. "This is SF Arachna requesting medical for a security guard with a gun wound at the FNB. Spasibo. In pursuit of perp." And she hung up.
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Penumbra on Wed Aug 31, 2016 8:19 pm

Oh for fucks sake. He'd been intending on luring her in to shoot her as she tried to snare him, since the hole he had managed to make in the webbing was already enough for him to see through for a teleportation further into the bank, but he hadn't expected her to hook his arms with her mutant spider limbs like that. Trying to figure out how people with so many physical changes would move was too much of a pain, he'd been expecting webs.

As it was, Penumbra couldn't get his hand around into a good enough position to shoot her, so he settling on gritting his teeth in irritation. "Nightwalking, spiderbitch." And he faded out between her arms, appearing in the main floor of the bank. Which had all the windows blocked off with webs. Great. At least he had some gloating he could do while he tried to clear a window with a few bullets. "Medical team won't make it in time for him, he might have a minute if you held the wound shut yourself." Annnd that was the last bullet.
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Arachna on Wed Aug 31, 2016 8:56 pm

"Oh, how truly unpredictable. You really got me there," Arachna replied with no inflection to her voice whatsoever. She was prepared to dodge bullets the second he reappeared, but he'd entirely given up on their confrontation at this point. With the last of the bullets tearing through the web-reinforced window closest to him, his method of escape was made clear.

She wouldn't give chase, at least not immediately, instead choosing to slowly stalk back up the stairs while her spider limbs took to weaving a chest bandage from her webbing. While the Superhero Foundation wouldn't always frown upon being unable to save innocent bystanders, if they knew that she was leaving an innocent man to die it would likely be difficult to explain, even if it was because she was pursuing a criminal. It was really no matter. She had methods of finding out where he was going.

While she was carefully bandaging the guard's wound with her webbing, she was putting in a call to The Hive, who was waiting not far away. He was likely already on the case, but she wanted to make sure that he was aware that their target was on the move and in need of being tracked. She'd come back for him later once she was positive that the security guard would make it through his predicament, even making sure that her conversation with Hive was vague enough that the man wouldn't be able draw any later conclusions to her affiliation if he was lucid enough through his suffering.
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Penumbra on Wed Aug 31, 2016 9:30 pm

"Hey, we can't all be Shakespeare." He pulled the baton out, preparing to beat off another attack, but she wasn't coming out of the stairs. Maybe her webs were too thick for her to get through immediately, maybe not. Either way, he'd take the chance to fade out once more, appearing back on the street.

Irritating hero-bitch showing up or not, this had proven he could take on a small scale place like this with no problem, as long as chance smiled a bit better on him to not have someone like her around right when he made his move. Satisfied with that, if not with the actual nights events, Penumbra hurried off into the night.

Sometime later, he was resting in a small apartment, leaning back on a couch with his feet up on the coffee table, having a drink and a snack while he watched TV. Currently the owner of the apartment was knocked out, gagged, tied up and shut in an out of the way room. No point spending his own money on food when he could get someone else's.
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Arachna on Thu Sep 01, 2016 12:04 am

By the time she'd finished bandaging the guard, clearing the area of her webbing to allow the EMTs to get in and help him efficiently and followed Hive's instructions to get to Penumbra's location, he'd had plenty of time to relax in the knowledge that he'd escaped unscathed.

That would all come falling down right about the time the living room window of the apartment he'd holed himself up in opened wide and Arachna easily squeezed her way in to stand before him once again.

"Davno ne videlis..." the unwelcome guest greeted in Russian, her eyes narrowing slyly as she crossed her arms over her chest.
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Penumbra on Thu Sep 01, 2016 1:20 am

Penumbra leaned even further back in his seat and took a long sip from his bottle, then let out a contented sigh. This was more like it. Relaxing in a -reasonably- comfortable home without any of the pesky costs associated with doing so. He didn't even really need to rob banks when he could just do this. But they'd catch on eventually, so the money would do him some good. He reached out to pick up the remote and change the channel when a breeze that shouldn't have been there wafts in.

Penumbra turns to face the window and freezes at the sight of the fucking spider bitch hero from the bank job. "Can't fucking leave well enough alone can you?" Dropping the remote, he snatched up the gun to point at her. It was out of bullets, but she might not know that. The resident of the house hadn't, after all. "The fuck do you want? And speak English." Shit shit shit, he was screwed. How had she followed him? He'd made sure there weren't any webs on him...
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Arachna on Thu Sep 01, 2016 8:10 pm

"I'm afraid not. You and I still have some business to discuss, do we not?" she chuckled, lazily raising her hands as she eyed the gun closely. Given the fact that the slide was back, the weapon was definitely out of ammunition. Though she didn't use such things nowadays, she'd worked closely with many who did as well as using them herself before her unique transformation gave her other means of attack. Still, she didn't drop her hands, letting him keep the illusion that he was in control. It might keep him from running.

"You shouldn't worry. I have no interest in bringing you in. I just want to... talk a bit..." she trailed off, letting him attempt to interpret her meaning. Her half raised hands swiveled into a lax shrug as she waited for his reaction.
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Penumbra on Thu Sep 01, 2016 8:49 pm

"Do we?" He didn't low the gun, since despite being obviously empty, she was treating it as if it wasn't, but he did shift it slightly to the side, to indicate he wouldn't be shooting just yet, as long as she didn't make any moves.

"Yeah? Alright, talk then." She didn't seem to be here with anyone else, and the longer she was talking, the longer Penumbra would have to try and think a better way out of this. If he could get up a move a bit, he could teleport through the window... But he was also curious as to what she thought she was doing here if she really hadn't come to attack him.
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Arachna on Thu Sep 01, 2016 9:15 pm

"Well," she began, bringing her arms down and walking straight toward him while reaching for the gun to take it from him forcibly. "First of all, let's make nice and stop pointing empty weapons at me, yes? Rather than fight against one another, let us work together."
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Re: Shadows and Spiders

Post by Penumbra on Thu Sep 01, 2016 9:18 pm

"Hey!" As soon as she started moving, Penumbra recentered the gun on her. Until she made it clear she knew it was empty as well as he did. Well shit. As she reached to disarm him he teleported quickly, leaving the gun behind in her hand and appearing in the corner of the room behind her. He spun around, barely managing to catch himself as his sitting position threatened to drop him to the ground with no couch under him now.

Once he'd straightened himself up and turned to face her he let out a small sigh. "Alright. No obviously empty weapons on me." She wanted to work together? What the hell was that bit at the bank about then. "Yeah? stopping my bank robbery is a good way of convincing me. Not."
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