Amy had grown, not annoyed, but testy with her first debriefing with the teams DVA agent, Maria. She considered herself a patient woman, but having to retell and wait for Maria to cross-reference the actions during her fight and time of said actions had gotten monotonous quickly.
Fortunately, the incapacitation of the middle-aged speedster had been relatively simple and was over in around two minutes. Amy was reluctant to even call it a fight; the woman had just been a standard speedster with what looked average acceleration and durability. A kick to dislocate her knee and a swift blow to the temple had been all it took to bring her down after Amy saw her race out of the deli with a gun in hand and people inside shouting “Thief!” after her.
But Amy took solace and pride in the fact that her first Hero battle had gone about as well as it could have and that she had probably garnered some good will with the public after such a performance.
After seeing Shane’s power, she got the feeling he wouldn’t be so lucky.
Shane found the team’s newest strong woman lifting ultra-dense weights in the gym. The haze around her body from using her powers all the more obvious under the bright lights.
“Vanessa, do you mind if I borrow you for a second?”, He called out as he approached, but stopped a reasonable distance away. He’d heard about and seen enough Supers with enhanced strength accidentally drop their weights.
“Oh, uh, sure. What do you need?”, Vanessa almost stammered out, not quite used to being approached.
“I’d like to spar a little more with you.”, Shane said upfront and without hesitation. “I may be more effective and safe at ranged combat, but it pays to constantly brush up on martial skill in case someone can get through my defenses.”, He tried to not go on a lecture like he use to do when he was younger; he’d found out the hard way that it didn’t exactly endear him to others.
Vanessa looked skeptical nonetheless. “Is that all?”.
Shane thought about trying to politely brush off her question or cleverly avoid it, but thought better of it. He hadn’t noticed at first, but over the course of the past three days he’d seen that she avoided being social with anyone that wasn’t either her mentor or her two friends. After practically being forced to team up with and befriend multiple people during his HCP tenure he’d found that being up front with people like Vanessa was for the best long-term.
“Also, because I noticed that you have less martial-skill than me and that I would like the person in charge of going hand-to-hand against strongmen be better at fighting than I am.”, Shane said and then steeled himself for whatever response she had.
At first Vanessa looked a little stunned, then introspective, then nodded in apparent understanding. “You’re right, and I noticed that too.”, she said before chuckling softly, “At first I thought it was a fluke when you flipped me onto to my ass the first time we fought one-on-one yesterday. But after seeing you beat Greg, Amy, and then hold off all three of us at once; The truth sunk in pretty heavily after that.” Vanessa then put the weight’s back on to their racks with a dull clang before going into one of the training circles and letting her power fade. She silently beckoned Shane forward.
Shane smiled and then strode into the same circle, facing her directly in a standard martial arts stance. “Ok then; let’s work on you countering when someone gets inside your reach.”
After a few rounds with Vanessa and with a not insignificant amount of soreness in his muscles, Shane prepared for bed. The dinner meeting and subsequent talk had been largely uneventful. The most exciting thing being Amy retelling her exploits and Rikki giving her, and by extension the rest of the Interns, some advice on how to better notice and capture criminal Supers.
Shane laid his head down and fell fast asleep. Then woke up what felt like five seconds later to the sound of an alarm.
He was groggy at first, but his mind quickly latched on to what the yellow flashing lights and high-pitched whistle meant. Their Mentors had walked them through what these alarms signified, the yellow one in particular meant: “Immediate and high-level Super related emergency in the city. Get down to the garage in five minutes or be left behind.” The voice of Dispatch from his earpiece only served to further confirm what he knew.
<Styx, please be aware that you and your team have been called in to handle the high-priority threat that has appeared in the industrial district.>
He sprang up and slammed open the closet for his suit, silently cursing himself for not practicing getting dressed quickly. “Dispatch, what are we dealing with here?”, Shane asked as he got halfway through putting on his gear.
<There are reports of a one story tall half-bull half-man going on a rampage near the local brewing companies. Likely a gifted shifter or the work of a high-end summoner.>
“Thanks!”, Styx barked out as he ran out of his room and down the hall toward where he remembered the garage was. He was briefly worried that he wouldn’t be able to make it in time; then he felt someone lift him up by his armpits and fly him the rest of the way towards and through the entrance. He looked up and saw that it was Vanes- Gadreel who’d given him a lift.
They arrived to find that all of their mentors were already there and ready to go, except for Obsidian-Wraith who was supposed to still be on patrol.
“C’mon, let’s go!”, Spectrum yelled from the drivers-side of what looked like a futuristic Humvee. Greg, now in his Samshiel costume, was blurred in by Simikiel seconds before Styx practically threw himself into the vehicle. Once everyone was secured and accounted for the garage exit snapped open with a loud clang of metal.
Rikki in her Crusader armor, Gadreel, and Simikiel flew out with Terram bounding along not far behind in his shifted form.
The Humvee roared to life and sped up onto the streets, taking off towards where Dispatch had said the threat would be.
An almost uncomfortable silence fell over them as they rode along, before Dispatch relayed more information that set the two Interns on edge.
<Be advised; The target has been identified as a high-end Demolition Class threat. First priority is neutralization of the Super before any more damage can be caused. Lethal force is officially authorized and the targets life is now a low-priority.>