If You Hunt Monsters Be Careful Not To Become One

If You Hunt Monsters Be Careful Not To Become One

Saturday, February 10th, 2024: 3:15 AM

Flying home as fast as possible due to the text messages Ameera sent him. Still unsure how her contact info got into his phone and why he already had a group contact for Norwood Knights. Somehow, he thought this might have something to do with Jake being left alone drunk and messing around with Optimus. Gryphon continues at top speed and pauses when he sees his home is not in flames. Going in through the top door on the roof he walks past Richard and Nathan eating some of the left over Wagyu beef. Dismissing his armor not but leaving his hero form, it doesn’t take Garrick long to realize Richard is still high on same drug used on him.

He is stopped by Nathan long enough to learn these two showed up about half past midnight. Nathan continues to inform Garrick that about half past 1 AM Carl the ‘Chauffeur’, Granny2Good, and Covenant arrived. Katherine showed up between 2:30 AM and 2:45 AM. After which Katherine immediately went into Garrick’s room while the other three are in the basement room sleeping on beds not occupied by Shorties. Garrick nods and when questioned about the drugs tells him his suspicions about Thad, but that he and one of the ladies he was with can’t confirm anything. Nathan nods mentioning that he’ll look into it as Garrick heads into his room.

Finding her in the bed she looks asleep to him. He sits on the edge of the bed and just strokes her hair SUPER thrilled she’s okay. He leans down and kisses Katherine on the cheek whispering in her ear, “I’m sorry if this feels slow of me but I am so happy you’re home and not hurt. The group needs me but I ‘love’ knowing I will see you again. Sweet dreams Kitty Kat and I adore you.” As he’s stroking her hair he finds a small fleck of glass. She’s dressed in all black, and while that is pretty normal for her. He remembered that she wasn’t wearing gloves before but it is February. She also had a different shirt with some neo-goth band on it. Thinking she had to change it for some reason he decides to ask her about it later that morning.

Walking out he can see Ethel and Alice sitting at the kitchen island. “Well, I can see you didn’t burn the place down so what’s up?”

“Gryphon!”

The two ladies were still into the breakfast they had made. As Garrick followed the Richard’s voice down to the ground floor where he mentioned the group had been hit pretty bad and he had an injection dart gun holding a bowl with some vials sized for the gun in it. When he offered Jake’s morning after remedy Garrick told him his body took care of this naturally. It seemed in this state Richard did not remember Garrick is normally 5’8″ and since he was standing 6’6″ tall he was transformed. He had just taken off his magically produced costume and wearing clothing sized for this form. What few seemed to realize is that he had been staying in this form nearly 85% to 90% of the time.

Heading back up he nods at Granny2Good and waves at Alice. Granny mentions, “I don’t know what’s gotten into Richard, he’s very weird today.”

“Umm, mmm, yeah if he was hit with what I was hit with yesterday then he’s reacting very different than how I reacted but I suppose everybody has a different reaction.”

“Okay, whatever, he should have already taken the ‘cure all’ from Jake and he should be fine now. He’s just acting weird now.”

“Hmm, well that’s okay I have pants to go put on,” realizing he just talked himself into a ‘weird’ verbal corner as he was still wearing pants. Granny smiles as Garrick just leaves to change out of his suit into his super hero attire that was reminiscent of an 18th century German aristocrat. As he leaves he can hear Ethel trying to get to know this particular personality of Beast better. “So, Alice, do you really like sushi? I just, I don’t understand that.” While Garrick only picked up snippets changing but it appears the ‘Alice’ personality like steak over sushi and is a professional cosplayer. Before walking out he leaves a set of clean clothes folded on the bed next to Katherine with a note, ‘For an amazing adorable woman, -G’ and just to ease his mind he checks her vitals before heads out to everyone else. The Geist calls out that we need to go from the ground floor.

As they go downstairs Granny2Good tells Gryphon she has worked out a dinner date with Miss Amazing for the new outfit fitting. The Gryphon is excited to hear about a ‘Girl’s Night’ for them. Granny2Good asks with a grin that made Gryphon remember why the Cheshire Cat in Alice in Wonderland was a bit menacing, “So, did you have a nice night out?” Replying it might have been one of the best nights of his life to date seemed to make her happy to know. As they make it to the table Garrick and the talk of outfits moves around in his head it occurs to him that Katherine’s change in attire would be perfect for covert ops or breaking and entering missions. Was this the reason he was given a ‘Hall Pass’ last night? So he wouldn’t question anything? Finding a seat at the table he now looks annoyed, because if she has done what he has feared she might have done then she’s lied to him for the second time.

In his head Garrick remembered his nickname from Gramercy, Professor Gack. He decided if Katherine has been lying to him all this time he would just let her go and begin dating whom he wished. This group of misfits seemed to have a near impossible time working together because they want help but not recognition and legitimacy. Garrick in his heart wanted to be known as a good person again and someone whom would help people. He wanted to honor his father’s memory as a hero, rather than an expendable, exploitable, naive do-gooder dead in a ditch when no longer useful. However, because they were his team he had chosen to be with then he will NEVER betray them. So if someone hurt his teammate they had better learn to run, add on if someone hurt his girlfriend then someone is going to die!

While the Geist is pulling up everything he wants to talk about Gryphon calls Zeau, “Hey how was last night?” The groggy voice of the professor turned super hero is very evident between his mutterings of ‘Hello’ and ‘…oh man I fell asleep at my desk’ and ‘…I knocked over my papers’ while trying to talk. Gryphon asked about his stopping by her class and he said, “Umm no. I stopped in around 8pm with Starbucks and she was there.” Gryphon informed him about the mission coming up but made it clear he wasn’t required to show up. He had just wanted to keep him in the loop. Granny2Good seemed shocked that Richard was still behaving odd while Zeau seemed nice to Gryphon on the phone. Gryphon just shrugged at that thought as Zeau cautioned everyone to be careful and not end up like Cavalry. Gryphon assured him Richard was working on this issue and looked toward the Geist. He was still working on the monitors to pull up everything.

Bidding Zeau a good day he turns back to the Geist realizing he was having a hard time, while Covenant looked hung over and somehow that was an improvement to everyone else! Pulling 3 monitors out on swing arms from the mounting pole so everyone could see the map of the warehouse from Fat Lucca’s paperwork he and Nathan had found. So this boiled down to a team of Gryphon, Granny2Good, Alice, Geist whom was forced to babysit Covenant so the team could make sure he didn’t become worse.

The warehouse on the monitors was located in the Zericho at 513 Zauber Rd. It appeared to be a standard trucking warehouse with six bays, front and rear entrances. Unfortunately, the note about the address and time was all they had to go on, and everyone present agreed they still had to do this. Black Phantom spoke up at this point about checking on whom had been tracking us to spike our drinks at the Nine Lives Club. Granny2Good was convinced it was Fat Lucca, and she had co-incidental logic points to support her theory. However, all the viewpoints lacked one important item: physical evidence to back them up.

Black Phantom went on to mention the two deaths at the club last night, of a young female and male. When the Gryphon asked about it Granny2Good got him to move on when almost everyone looked at Covenant by saying, “I promise I’ll tell you later.” Gryphon realized that Covenant was clearly involved, however, according to everyone else he was on AMP. He’ll likely need help mentally if he remembers what he fears Granny will tell him later. It’s decided to take Gryphon’s Truck to the area and park a few buildings away.

Finding a quiet spot around 4 AM to park the truck in the shipping and warehouse portion of Zericho near our destination. There was some discussion about sneaking quietly with Alice’s power to silence things, and the young-looking mutant assassin confirmed it would be even quieter flying. When Gryphon was queried about flying drawing attention he said, “Look you’re wearing pink; I am dressed in blue, gold, and white; and the Geist is in a black hood. Even in the dark we stand the hell out.” Granny2Good was quiet for a few having to acknowledge the facts of the situation. She asked about carrying everyone and Gryphon mentioned carrying five girls home wasn’t an issue. Alice chimed in she was tiny in support of the idea. To be fair Gryphon looked at 4′ 11″ Granny2Good and 4′ 7″ Alice as though their concern about weight was hilarious.

The ladies took turns ribbing Gryphon about carrying five girls home. After some smirks the Gryphon put Alice on his back and put his arms around Granny2Good, Geist and Covenant. Gryphon felt bad because even when Covenant transformed after taking Jake’s ‘Morning After Remedy’ he still was suffering from constant migraine level headaches. As Gryphon lifted up he was only two feet above the roof tops and even slowed down if they saw a car to make passing over the few streets as subtle as possible. Gryphon also explained that should something happen and anyone fell they should be able to land without incident on the particular roof they were over. Weaving in and out between industrial water towers, A/C units, and other roof mounted structures they made their way around to approach 513 Zauber Rd. from the truck dock side.

Before he landed Gryphon paused ever so briefly to let everyone know, and hopefully see, the armored aircar on the roof of the warehouse. It was more of an armored or tactical airvan than aircar. Gryphon landed everyone behind some high stacked pallets. When they saw the docks with six, 53 ft. long trucks broken up into two groups of three. One group of docks was more recessed into the back of the building. That group of big rigs all had their motors running in idle, but no one in their cabs. Gryphon turns back to the Geist, “Well, with the armored aircar, and the running idle big rigs would suggest the info you found was legit.”

Chuckling the Geist whispers, “Well, looks like I’m good for something.”

Granny2Good began asking Covenant for advice about sneaking over because this was not her area of expertise. The groans coming out of the Covenant suggest that at this moment nothing was in his area of expertise. Not waiting on ceremony and dressed in dark colored outfit for her size that in the wide open night didn’t smell nearly as bad since the Shorties had forgotten to wash it. Alice quickly makes her way across the yard! Moving from shadow to shadow as though it was a super power of some kind she arrives at one of the idling big rigs. She climbs into the cab and breaks the key off in the ignition. Moving to each truck in the group of three she repeats the process. Alice found it odd she couldn’t hear any signs of commotion in the warehouse, no forklifts, nothing. Back at the pallets Gryphon spies the camera nestled in small half-domes on the building. He radioed Alice, “Be mindful of the birds in the sky watching you from the building.” Hoping that if someone did overhear his transmission he had been cryptic enough to not give away where she was. Alice crawled under the last big rig and peered in to the dock bay door which was not only up but the ramp that would normally allow a forklift access into the container was pulled back giving anyone ample room.

Inside was a group of people bound and on the ground in a group. She motioned for her teammates to join her because finally something of note had been discovered. Granny2Good ran over while Gryphon picked up Geist and Covenant flying over and setting them down against the warehouse’s wall. Alice noticed a clearly Asian woman she thought she had seen in news articles about supers. She was wearing a tactical katana strapped to her side walking toward the group on the ground. Granny2Good was gearing up to bull rush the katana wielding woman when Alice said she had a plan to get information. Gryphon nodded but agreed with Granny and made ready to strike. Alice just walked in openly and when the Asian women noticed her she asked, “Great Watashi outfit, awesome cosplay! Is this where the convention location today?” She was putting her convention and cosplay social skills to brilliant use!

The Asian woman she called Watashi raised her arm and spoke into a communication device embedded in her outfit’s sleeve. Alice continues walking toward her when a man steps out from a shadowed corner. Solid white hair, appears to be late fifties, an eye patch over one eye, very muscular. Dressed in military camouflage pants with a navy-blue shirt with a high-tech rifle slung over one shoulder and a tactical body harness with two automatic pistols towards either side. Alice recognized the group leader of the Requisitors. As Alice kept walking Colonel Lightning said in a gruff voice, “Ma’am, I’m gonna need you to step back.”

Cool as ice Alice just addressed them as a couples cosplay! If only Carl could get his groove back because clearly in this facet of his psyche he was able to be cool under pressure. Granny tried sneaking in but kept making noise on the smooth concrete with her heels and well then there’s the pink outfit that strikes a pose almost on its own. Gryphon never even tried to sneak and rose up into the air above the boxes and those figures were only vaguely familiar to him as agents of good. Hearing Granny2Good approach behind her, Alice, turns and yells, “SAME TEAM! SAME TEAM! We’re all good guys here, DON’T ATTACK!”

Col. Lightning steps forward, “Little miss, I’m going to need you to report yourself. Who are you and what team are you with?”

From above Gryphon says, “It’s kinda a work in progress.”

Granny2Good smirks, “Well, we may have one right now dear.”

Alice throws her hand slowly looking back at her team, “Aww, come on, I can’t think of anything! Ummm, Ummm, Mustang Sally!”

Granny2Good and Gryphon exchange looks! “That’s what you’re working with,” queries the flying hero?

Col. Lightning seems just as confused, “Look, I’m going to need to know if you’re good guys or bad guys as I have eyes in the sky.”

Replying Gryphon asks, “You mean the armored aircar on the roof?”

As he points up everyone, Gryphon especially notices a number of small and very silent flying drones! Out from behind Col. Lightning comes another individual from their team in a brown uniform as Granny2Good shows off her left sleeve trying to respond to the Good or Bad comment. Emblazoned upon that sleeve is her hero moniker ‘GRANNY 2 GOOD‘ in pink so bright it could be neon. Gryphon wisely kept his mouth shut regarding a neon orange bulb joke he’d heard yesterday. As the brown outfitted super heroine comes further into view the upper part of her face is covered up by very hi-tech goggles integrated into her suit. A large bushy tail appears to be attached to her outfit and Alice recognizes her as the Flying Squirrel!

Flying Squirrel was typing on a forearm mounted computer with a flexible, yet semi-rigid lcd screen that is open! Gryphon looks suitably impressed and thinks he just might be able to continue being a superhero if he finds a way to free Ashmadiel from its sword bound form. Apparently she was the one controlling the drones. Gryphon calls out, “I am the Gryphon of Norwood.”

Col. Lightning smiles, “OH! You’re the flying sword guy that harasses Starbucks employees.”

Happy to be wearing a visored helm Gryphon sighs mumbling, “No, that’s Jake.”

Col. Lightning calls out, “Alright everybody, STAND DOWN! Come on out.”

The team sees a mutant hybrid Wolf-Man wearing only pants come out from a side office! Following him was a very, very attractive African-American woman in a business suit. Then came the surprise as Nathan Fillion, the actor, came out last! Nathan began asking, “So does this happen often with other superhero group dropping in on you?”

Gryphon asks, “So were you here to stop Fat Lucca? Since we’re laying everything out on the table.”

Col. Lightning nods in the affirmative, “Yep, we got wind of the shipment and have been casing the joint for a few weeks.”

“We were in the Nine Lives Club last night and found some paperwork leading us here.”

Col. Lightning raises an eyebrow, “You weren’t part of the shootout, were you?”

Before anyone could respond Alice looses her cool and begins ‘Fangirling’ on Nathan Fillion! Going on and on about watching every episode of Firefly 15 times! Also every episode of Castle, except the last season because her opinion of that season was that it was sub-par. Ok ok, she said it sucked. Nathan just chuckles and says, “Why thank you miss.” Before they revisited the topic of the nightclub Col. Lightning seemed to be visually studying the Gryphon, “Good grief Gryphon I barely recognized you! Glad to see you made it out of the can!”

Gryphon was stunned to say the least that someone would not only know whom he really was but called out that fact with knowledge of his past to avoid using his actual name. That reminded him he would need to remind Geist to be more careful drunk dialing people on the team. “You actually know who I am under the,” waving at his outfit.

“Of course.”

“Uhhh. That’s a first.”

“Well, every girl you hook up with knows your name why can’t I?”

“That’s an awkward statement. Umm.”

“Aww come on, I know you get around,” looking back at his team, “This is the guy I’ve been telling you about. Mavis, watch out for this one,” he’s smiling and jovial about the issue while looking back at the very, very attractive African-American woman in the business suit. He reminds his team to stand down as the Gryphon removes his helm and lands allowing it to vanish in golden mist.

“So you look like you have this all wrapped up? Are we just late to the party?”

Col. Lightning mentioned they were about to wrap it up and call the cops, but they would be willing to hold off if we wanted to do an investigation. It was then he started paying more attention to Covenant sitting by a box with the Geist standing next to him. The gruff sigh predicated his next statement, “Is that your buddy over there?”

Gryphon nodded, “Somebody doped him up with AMP last night.”

“I’m gonna do you a courtesy, he might want to lay low for awhile.”

The Gryphon looks back at the Covenant making eye contact when he realizes he’s the focus of the conversation, “Do you even remember what happened to you last night?”

Shaking his head the Covenant replies, “Noooo, what happened?”

Asking Col. Lightning to fill them in he relates what he’s heard, “Reports are getting out from CSPD, they’ve got pictures and he’s wanted.” Further questioning of Covenant revealed he knew he was angry and he’s afraid he went to far. Gryphon realizing that he likely killed the man and woman from the club he was told about earlier made him want to stop Fat Lucca even more. The Colonel and Gryphon talked about what had been found and the Requisitors had only run across weapons being transported here. When asked they said they would be happy to wait a half hour before calling the cops. The group began to fan out while Nathan Fillion was really interested in a ‘super’ being as old as Granny2Good. Poor Granny did not wait around to answer any question related to her age and sped off to a far corner of the warehouse.

As the Gryphon heads for the warehouse offices the Requisitors begin taking people out for the police to have easy access to when they arrive. In the office he makes short work of bypassing the security on the PC at the main office desk. As he began to browse the files he noticed an electrical box on the wall much lower than the city code requirements for such a device junction. He couldn’t find anything about it in the file search, and when he looked on the inside it was not tapping into the power of the building. There was a single, large throw switch that appeared very old. He threw the switch causing the floor behind the desk to fall away.

Following the steps down into a hallway just big enough for two adults barely shoulder to shoulder. The destination was a store room with boxes that used inhalers to deliver the AMP drug rather than injector needles! Alice comes up behind him at this time and its decided to bring these up and hand it over to the Requisitors so they can turn it into the CSPD along with the guns as evidence to put these guys away for a long time. As they neared the end of the boxes one of them had a big 17-inch laptop on top of it. When Gryphon opened the lid and tried to bring up the log in screen a video began to play. It was Fat Lucca!

Looks like you found my stash, but if you really want to stop me…
…come to ‘Lucciano’s’ my restaurant in Javarta. I’ll be waiting. hahaha!

He chuckles but it looks like an afterthought as oppose to any genuine mirth. After getting everything upstairs Gryphon gathers everyone around and plays the message again. Nathan looked surprised at seeing crime and plot devices in real life. Col. Lightning mentioned that since Gryphon’s team had found something that the Requisitors had missed. They would be willing to let the Mavericks take Fat Lucca down while they handled the aftermath here and deal with the cops. Having dealt with AMP in the big take down almost a week ago the CSPD would have steps to handle the alien, chemical-laced drug. It would show that not all of the drug was in the hands of the authorities. On top of that they had figured out changing the delivery system from liquid injection to aerosol-based inhalant!

When the Gryphon mentioned he was willing to let them tell the cops about his hero name, and thrilled the group didn’t have a name just yet so no one else would be in trouble when the cops came looking for him. Col. Lightning told him they would take credit for it so they could avoid the issue altogether. Gryphon slid the AMP over and the Colonel mentioned they needed to get a beer. They exchanged contact info when Col. Lightning said, “I’ve been keeping my eye on you, making sure you’re on the straight and narrow ever since you got out.”

This appeared to surprise the Gryphon into remembering when Warden Harker said he had friends on the outside. He wondered if his father knew Colonel Lightning? See him puzzle over that statement the Colonel chuckled, “You’re good kid, you’re good.”

“He’s a very nice young boy and we’ll take care of him,” Granny2Good added.

“Thank you Ma’am.”

“It was very nice meeting you.”

Nathan Fillion made another attempt to try and get some information politely and Granny mentioned she was fond of his voice over work on the Venture Brothers as the ‘Brown Widow’ character. Alice retorted in somewhat mock disgust that was a comparison to his work as the ‘Captain Hammer’ character. Nathan smiled and mentioned he was preparing for another movie role and was the reason for his presence here. Gryphon mentioned that due to the need to stop Fat Lucca the interview would have to be cut short. Nathan brushed him off and tried to continue when Granny2Good just said a girl never tells her secrets and ran out trying to take Gryphon with her until she saw him going for Covenant. Alice pointed out widowhood gave her superpowers for some reason, curtsied, and ran out.

As they are leaving Nathan Fillion waved after her, “Have a good time! Hmmm, a senior citizen, is that normal to be a super hero?”

As the Gryphon is making sure the Geist has Covenant well in hand Alice pokes her head in and sees Mavis sharing many glances with Gryphon. The Gryphon is almost instinctively displaying southern gentlemanly charm. She begins to wonder if that is actually a superpower or Gryphon is just a manwhore? Once Geist is on his way out with Covenant, Gryphon floats a few feet off the ground and his armor vanishes in golden mist only to be re-summoned with the helm back on his head! He nods at Mavis tipping his gryphon shaped helm the way men did their fedora hats and bids her adieu with, “Ma’am.” Before he flies out into the dark early morning to join his super friends as he can hear from inside, “Call me.” Getting back to his truck there is only a minor scratch on the side of the door, and everyone piles in.

5:10 AM

The group passed by Lucciano’s once to try and get an idea of what they were dealing with. Granny2Good mentioned it looked popular with over 25 cars in the parking lot which made Gryphon blurt out, “It’s just after 5 AM what kind of Italian restaurant has a breakfast menu?” Granny nodded remembering it had hours of 11 AM to 11 PM typically. Gryphon remarked, “In an hour my favorite coffee shop would open up, not to far away.”

“The Vault?”

“Yep, so we just have to kick his ass in an hour and then we can get shawarma and coffee!”

Gryphon loved seeing no one doubted they could handle this in an hour, but questioned whether or not a shawarma place would be good or even open after 6 AM. Alice holds up the phone she had from her other personality, Carl, and mentions that while farther away the Bloody Flowers Shawarma is open 24/7 in Everett! Gryphon reasserts his plan and Granny agrees, especially after Geist assures her she would like it. Finding another nearby location to park a few buildings away the consensus is that this is a trap set to try and wipe us out. Granny and Gryphon seemed to be itching for a fight seeing that they both had speed to mitigate range and were some of the group’s heavy hitters.

The group lands at the front of Lucciano’s just past the packed parking lot. When the team turns to Geist for the plan he replies that he’d like to see what they come up with. Granny assumed and stated that means ‘no plan’ and goes up to the side entrance on the front and wrenches the door open so hard that the handle embeds in the wall and stays open! Followed by Gryphon and Alice directly, while the Geist brings Covenant along whom is slowly beginning to feel better but is still shaky on his legs and prone to dizzy spells.

Granny2Good shows that her powers have clearly affected her approach to danger as she calls out, “Hello? Is anyone home?” Alice drops her face into her hands as the Gryphon just shrugs considering this approach just as valid as any other. Alice speaks in Japanese about the stupidity of this approach and her panicked nickname of our group. Gryphon tries to make her better replying in Japanese thanks to his sword he had summoned to his hand that maybe just ‘The Mustangs’ would be a better choice. Following the adrenaline, ramped up, widow they all noticed the quiet silence as the only response to her declaration.

Eventually Granny2Good came upon a curtain separating a portion of the dining area. A weird smell was coming from behind the curtain, as she pulled it open she paused. The amount of blood and bodies made it seem as though Jackson Pollack and Pablo Picasso had painted the room together! Roughly 40 or so bodies littered this curtain encapsulated dining section of the Italian restaurant. Alice suggested we leave and call an anonymous tip into CSPD. Gryphon noticed a monitor and pedestals with name tags corresponding to their real identities! Trying to hide her growing concern Granny remarks, “I think we’ve been setup boys.” Gryphon flies over slowly to check it out, however, after crossing the curtain threshold the monitor begins playing a video. Fat Lucca shows up again but is visibly nervous towards something or someone off camera.

Greetings, so called heroes!
You have formed a group but you truly don’t really trust each other.
Some of you have possibly turned each other in, in the past.
Some of you have betrayed each other.
Hit the button that applies for you if you’ve betrayed your teammates.
And you will…

Gryphon lays his sword flat in both hands a presses every button at once, turning back to the others, “I’m done with secrets let’s find out whatever the hell he’s got.”

Congratulations! You have all turned each other in.
It seems no one can trust anyone.
Good news for you, when you entered the cops have been called.
Good luck, have fun!
If you survive this, meet me at Century Station Memorial Park.
At 8 AM, because lives are at stake.

“Gryphon,” Alice cries out, “fly back and get us out of here!”

The monitor begins to smoke itself in a self-destruct mode to everyones surprise. Gryphon removes the power cord to prevent an electrical fire and keeps it. He takes the name tags to protect everyone’s identities, and then flies back to help everyone get out as Granny2Good holds the door open since she is wearing gloves. On the way out of the blood bath area everyone talks about the fact Fat Lucca looks like he’s in a hostage video. Granny mentions to Gryphon as they leave she feels the cops are getting close. Once everyone is outside Gryphon gets Granny along with everyone else and flies quickly back to his truck. Poor Covenant just moans at being jerked around and closes his eyes during the short flight.

Back at the truck Granny can finally hear sirens in the distance. Gryphon points out his worry that perhaps the lives at stake are the people they ‘as a group’ care about because Fat Lucca and his “captor?” knew their real names. Freaking out Gryphon makes a group call on his phone, putting it on speaker. No answer from either Shorty #1 or Katherine. Black Phantom answers though and the Gryphon fills him in on Fat Lucca being a hostage to an unknown party that appears to be setting them up using everyone’s real name! Then Black Phantom drops the bombshell on Gryphon. Not only was the murder from the nightclub being reported on television, but there was a jewelry heist. A bunch of jewels were stolen and the value is a few million dollars worth! A number of eyebrows raised up at this point. Black Phantom went on to say that there were images from security cameras of one of the thieves having a lot of blond hair coming out from under their ski mask. Otherwise the attire was identical to what Miss Amazing was wearing when she came home around a quarter to three this morning! He continued to inform Gryphon when she saw that on the news she bolted and ran!

Asking Black Phantom to put him on speaker phone he tells Optimus to grant Nathan access to his room. He confirms his identity with a line from an old Transformers TV show. He tells him where the ski mask is that Jake gave him when they were all about to leave on that Liberty Bell dimensional field trip. He wants to know if there’s another ski mask in his room. Black Phantom quickly calls him back mentioning the ski mask, shirt, pants, and gloves. Granny2Good sitting in the front passenger seat can see that Gryphon is emotionally compromised as he follows the navigation program, quietly running in the background, to the park. At the Gryphon’s request he puts it all in a trash bag and treats it as evidence. Granny can see a disturbing calm come over Gryphon. What she can see simmering below the surface is anger.

Zeau joins the call briefly and everyone knows he made it home safely. Everyone explains to Black Phantom about the heads of seven color gangs dead in Lucciano’s which stuns him into asking if we did that. Gryphon clarifies that whomever took Fat Lucca did it. Black Phantom offers to check into the hit on our group or the shooting. Gryphon mentions that maybe check on the hit to our group from the angle of whom would know to use Fat Lucca to lure us in? Phantom adjusts his search parameters while Gryphon mentions meeting the Requisitors hero team from Veridian Dynamics. He laughs mentioning their commercial about helping you ‘most’ of the time.

As a precaution Gryphon asked Black Phantom to check and make sure that the Requisitors turned over the drugs and guns to the CSPD. In a few minutes Black Phantom mentions that there’s a record of an impending deposit to the evidence room regarding the guns and drugs. Relieved they had not just been duped by super villains pretending to be super heroes. Gryphon turns his attention back to Katherine and the Psychology 101 extra credit. For the record when someone is emotionally compromised they can hear perfectly normal statements and the only listen to what they are receptive to. Such was the case with Gryphon fearing all the evidence pointing to Miss Amazing being involved. He knew she had no qualms about lying to him when it appeared to suit her agenda. Such as investigating Patsy. She then had not come clean about it until Gryphon asked, even then she had hid details that might have prevented her being put in harm’s way. Was the hall pass to distract him? He had warned them that some kind of black ops thing might happen. He had survived hell for three years, his paranoia is what kept him alive.

As his mind was reaching survival mode and regressing to how to navigate prison scenarios. He was beginning to spiral out of control when rationally had already told her even he missed the signs regarding Patsy and the sword. What surprised him into checking his fear, and concerns was Granny2Good talking to him, “Honey, you know Katherine better than that.” They go back and forth about Kat, or Miss Amazing deserving Gryphon’s trust. Also, how he clearly needs to talk with her about the lie and how it clearly still hurts him. Granny is the one that calms Gryphon down as he drives and defends Miss Amazing as the victim. Because she to doesn’t want to live in the past, and believes Miss Amazing is not like her husband.

As he hangs up the group call and thanks Black Phantom for making sure his Shorties are safe, he sees an unheard voice mail. Listening to it on speaker phone, “Hey Care-Garr its me, Katherine. [LONG PAUSE] I don’t know what happened [LONG PAUSE] I need to go and lay low until I find out what happened. [LONG PAUSE] Keep doing what you’re doing I know it’s important. [LONG PAUSE] I’ll contact you when I can, bye.” Granny2Good smiled warmly, “See, anything she did she wasn’t herself.” Onward they continued to Ogilvie and the Century Station Memorial Park.

6:24 AM

Arriving at Century Station Memorial Park, he pulls the truck into its vehicle lot. The posted hours mention public access between 6 AM and 11 PM. A sub-district based monorail runs over one side of the park with train pods passing every 30 minutes. A small group of joggers ran into the middle archway of the park wall. Coming up the sidewalk was a sunrise yoga class heading in from the side arch providing easy access to the pond inside the park walls.

Gryphon asked Geist how he wanted to go about looking for a bomb. Catching Geist a bit off guard Gryphon pointed out that, A) if lives are at stake, B) in a public place, and C) you wanted to cause the most collateral damage. A bomb would be the method of delivery he would take. A conversation broke out about how to approach looking for a bomb. Gryphon gave Geist his truck keys and told him to keep Covenant in the truck and out of sight. If things went south the Geist was requested to incorporate our group as a sponsored team so we could get out of jail. That part of the plan surmised the CSPD would show up at some point. The Geist was honest that, yes, he would try but he was not sure if he could move that amount of money very fast.

Granny was going to take Alice and search from the ground because she had been to the park many times over her life. Alice had sound powers that would cover the sound her speed would make and any crushed bushes in her wake. Gryphon would check from the air and between their vantage points should be able to locate the bomb device. On they went with Granny2Good waiting at the steps to the great statue the park was known for as Gryphon flew overhead. He pointed out a crate to his teammates and they converged upon it. The familiar laptop was present and Gryphon pressed the space bar.

Hello, It’s Fat Lucca!
You’re here early, it’s not 8 o’clock.
What are you doing? The crate doesn’t unlock till 8 o’clock.

“Oh, yes it does!”

Well anyway, come back at 8 o’clock.

Granny tells Alice to get off her back, which was funny to watch Alice at 4 ft. 7 in. tall get off Granny2Good at 4 ft. 11 in. tall. Especially beside Gryphon at 6 ft. 6 in. tall. Granny attempts to grab the box which causes another video to play.

Any attempt to open the crate will result in death of everyone in the proximity.

Gryphon looks at her pausing, “Granny it’s a bomb.”

“And, get out of here!”

“No, we’re going to do this as a team. Alice go help Geist to get everyone out of the park.”

Alice asks before being shooed away by Granny’s reply, “What if we play by their rules? So far we haven’t had any issues.”

“Oh, many people dead is no issue at all!”

Over the communicator Alice asked, “Do we really want to risk opening it?”

This prompted a conversation between Gryphon and Granny about first grabbing the box and then Gryphon flying them both up and away from the city to save everyone from the blast. When Gryphon spotted how it was bolted to the statue he realized that plan wouldn’t work. Granny had gotten so seemingly frustrated she appeared to Gryphon as though she had stopped caring about the innocent lives around her. She wanted to be in charge of her own fate, and constantly not being in charge of your agency can make you do extreme things. Gryphon knew of fourteen dead people that could attest to him when he felt that way. Gryphon realized at that moment why Mavericks had been outlawed. Still, she was his teammate and he had to diffuse two bombs now.

The Geist calls in over the head confirming the bomb information Alice told him about. Gryphon explained the plan was to try and Cut the concrete just enough with his sword so Granny2Good can grab the box and the Gryphon fly both up and away from the city to save them from the blast. The Geist asked if that plan would allow us to learn whom was behind this and Fat Lucca’s kidnapping. Neither of them knew and the Geist wondered if they were willing to risk it. Gryphon was praying the Geist’s line of questioning would help talk Granny down. So far it seemed to be effective, and Gryphon said they would likely need the Requisitors’ assistance to keep the cops back because one of the joggers or sunrise yoga folks would throw this up on social media. While they weren’t able to get visual confirmation it was a bomb without tampering with it, all signs pointed to it being one.

Gryphon played the video over his phone for the Geist and pointed out Fat Lucca was bleeding in this video and the Gryphon feels he angered his boss above him in the criminal underworld. Trying to make it seem like the Geist was wise for waiting he saw Granny in a holding pattern trying to take it all in. So far the plan to keep her calm was working but it had only been a few minutes. Geist said he would make the call and during the short wait Gryphon just thanked Granny2Good with no context added to it because he felt the topic list was to long. Granny thanked him back for being a good friend, and that he shouldn’t try so hard because he was a good human. The Geist informed them he got a hold of Flying Squirrel and they would be there in 45 minutes.

7:32 AM

The Requisitors arrive via Flying Squirrel’s armored, tactical airvan. Gryphon verfies by flying straight up to see them on approach and then lands to update Granny. Gryphon and her continued to talk about how to proceed and and Gryphon acknowledged he would hover over it. Granny appeared to Gryphon to have forgotten how quickly he regenerates when she mentioned how often he’s been damaged lately. Gryphon just shrugged and for the first time mentioned his sister Adeline by name seemingly dreading the moment she would find out he was alive and a superhero. During all this Alice began to hit the street trying to find something or someone that could lead them to Fat Lucca’s actual location.

As she was looking for leads and evidence Gryphon noticed a shiny object between the box and the statue. He squats and pulls it out seeing foreign writing he begins to eliminate other writings he would not have noticed. Finally he stands and hands the bottle top to Granny as he hits the space bar on the laptop once more and as the video plays he asks, “Is Jake holding you hostage?” Granny looks down and recognizes it as Gryphon asks her, “Did Jake go and capture Fat Lucca just to make an adventure for us?” Her eye roll suggests that this idea is certainly not beyond some of the stunts of her brother.

Alice received information from a wino that a very, very drunk man matching Jake’s description had been there on the statue placing the crate. This caused her to begin swearing in Japanese! Granny2Good mentions this to Gryphon as she is trying to hide how pissed she is at the moment. They’re able to raise Alice on their comm units only to find out in this world Jake has a small cult following and he is the one that dropped off the box. Alice went on to describe how the homeless man holding some ‘Mad Dog 2020’ thought he was sober in comparison to how drunk Jake was. Gryphon was astounded that Jake had ‘people’ and Granny told him he doesn’t always remember that. However, he has them scattered across the universe!

There was a small discussion about if Jake was evil and Granny2Good refused to believe this iteration of Jake was evil. Granny and Gryphon both acknowledged that they likely had evil copies in another reality along with Jake. She really worried Gryphon because it seemed to him as if she had stopped caring about any of the innocent lives just past the wall of the park and cared more about ripping the box apart. She was so full of herself that she could absorb the blast or die and still absorb it all. Gryphon was concerned this could become a second Winslow, and he’d do anything to prevent that. Granny2Good was becoming a bigger and more immediate threat than Jake setting the bomb here! She was nearly 100% convinced even after Alice’s findings that her Jake didn’t do this! She was putting his life and reputation over the lives of innocents, and all Gryphon was trying to do was stall her from doing something rash.

Fighting Jake in this way was useful to him because he had an idea of how Murder Master had defeated every super hero in Millennium Station. Alice began to approach trying to figure out if her sonar sight would allow her to scan the box to determine its contents were 100% a bomb and not a hoax. She climbed up on the wall and then scrambled on top of the archway leading into the park. With her power she could see inside the box and began describing what she saw to the Gryphon. He pulled his phone out and began using a pen with a stylus tip to sketch the information and make blueprints of the internal workings of the bomb. After he was finished and thanks to Alice the status of it being a bomb was no longer in debate.

Granny2Good still wanted to rip the box apart convinced it would just blow up at 8 AM and Gryphon was convinced Jake liked puzzles and games over just raw explosions when their was a chance to prove how smart he was. Gryphon gently tried to get her to understand he was trying to prevent her from becomming another Cavalry. When he explained how Cavalry’s accident led to the Liberty Bell being destroyed Granny remembered nearly hitting a building on a previous day. Finally realizing she may have been wrong about the poor kid that never asked for these powers. She appeared calmer and then tried to agree with Gryphon and get him to back away from the bomb utterly convinced it would just blow at 8 AM. Gryphon knew that was sheer folly because if this intergalactic power bomb was even a tenth of the power of Winslow then that would mean a minimum of 300 dead and 1,000 injured. What worried him about this more was what if the bomb is worse than Winslow and the death toll exceed 6,000 and 20,000 injured at twice the damage of what sparked the riots.

7:41 AM

They began to politely argue about whom should stay when they were interrupted by Geist about moving our truck to make a clean get away later. Alice chimed in with an idea and began to run over with her special multi-device, the Black Box. She programmed it into a covering that could contain the box inside it. Gryphon began to wonder if Granny2Good wanted to die, because she tried to talk Alice into not using it. Gryphon wanted everyone to remain calm and Alice’s idea was the best one he had heard since Granny stopped seeming to care about innocent civilians and just wanting to tear this open. Alice had tried getting a special support line to answer how much of the blast this could contain but no that could answer the question appeared to be available. She left the area and they waited the remaining time till 8 AM.

At 8 AM nearby church bells toll and Gryphon takes one of Granny’s hands in case this is their final moments hearing the box trying to open. They eventually call Alice back to remove the skin and it opens. There’s a mounted laptop on the inside of the lid a metal scale and two jugs next to it. The video begins to play and Fat Lucca has a black eye to go with his bloody nose.

So as many of you might know or may not know, uh,
One of my favorite movies is Die Hard, so this is the scene from Die Hard 3.
No using your phones because if you do the bomb will go off.
Good Luck, Have Fun, Here You Go!
You need to take these two jugs, one is 3 liters, the other is 5 liters.
You need to measure out 4 liters exactly and put it on the scale or the bomb will blow up.
Good Luck, Have Fun

The Gryphon grabs the 5 liter jug and his pen. Then using the 3 liter jug he fills it and pours it in the 5 liter one. He marks off where 3 liters is on the 5 liter jug. Between there and the top he finds the midway point and marks off the 4th liter position. He fills the three liter jug and pours the remaining missing liter so it contains 4 liters exactly. Granny takes Alice away since she is worried Gryphon is about to blow himself and the surrounding area up, potentially. He sets the jug on the scale which prompts another Fat Lucca video

Congratulations, you win this time!
Uh, Umm, meet me for reals at this location
<< Address is given >>

Seeing I did not explode Granny2Good brings Alice back up as he is on the phone letting Col. Lightning know he disarmed the bomb and they can have it. Granny begins screaming that Gryphon has screwed over her brother. First, Gryphon dismantles her argument on creation citing masterminds in Gramercy and the video showing Fat Lucca. Second, when she brings up fingerprints he knows his are now all over this and he’s taking the bottle cap with alien writing. Alice touches it all over while Granny continued to berate Gryphon rather than being excited about the innocent lives that had been saved. Gryphon feels happy she cares for someone that much, but feels sad because now he believes the minute Jake is threatened she would stop caring about the whole of the Earth to save him and his reputation at her expense. He also knows being yelled at she considers him an unintelligent child. In his head he just acknowledges it is easier being hated because no one lies about how they feel then. Still they were teammates and he stopped trying to explain what he had learned about most peoples reaction to alien technology. She didn’t care to listen to someone she thought was to stupid to play his own gambit.

Alice mentioned her support of Granny’s concerns thinking of Jake as arrogant enough to not care about being discovered. Granny could see his resigned frustration and tried to mention they needed to protect Jake the way they protected Covenant. She appeared offended that Gryphon suggested the innocents were higher up the food chain in needing protection than any of them. Gryphon flew over to Col. Lightning letting him know the bomb was defused an they could take it at their leisure. While he was talking with the sponsored hero Granny2Good picks up Alice on her 4′ 11″ frame and says in Gryphon’s earshot, “Come on, let’s go make a difference!” They speed away in a flash toward the address in the Hannigan sub-district.

Granny and Alice arrive before Gryphon at the manufacturing warehouse with an entrance on the east side. Gryphon lands just long enough to make his sword appear and cut a huge hole in the razor wire fence line. Looking back he mentions in a snarky tone, clearly miffed, “Did you not say you want to get this done, you said you wanted to make a difference, let’s go.” He flies to the door at 60MPH and slams through it. Granny easily keeps up as Gryphon is ripping through things the way she talked about doing to the box. They come upon yet another laptop on a pedestal with a single chair behind it. Gryphon lands and hits the space bar as Granny2Good tries to take the opposite stance from ripping bomb boxes apart, “You know, Gryphon, dear you might want to not hit the space bar so quickly…”

The Gryphon cuts her off and his tone is less than polite, “Oh I’m sorry, did you want to hit the space bar or are you upset that I’m on board with your plan to get things done?”

The video begins to play showing Fat Lucca with two black eyes and bleeding from his face, chained up and hanging from a ceiling. The camera’s perspective is upside down. It starts out sound like Fat Lucca and then Jake comes into view on the camera! Jake goes on to bemoan about people shutting his warehouses down and turning him in. He asks those present to just sit the one thing he cares about in the world in the chair or the city blows up. Gryphon says in a soft tone, “Ethel, its you.” Granny nods and sits in the chair. The chair moves slowly and begins to go down slowly like a dark Disney ride, his voice comes on and he talks about the one person that believes in him and Gryphon follows through the air behind her. It goes and up into another room of the warehouse with the voice ending on thanking the Starbucks employee everyone harassed! Granny2Good and Gryphon see Alice, a chained up Fat Lucca, and Jake sleeping on a cot.

Alice goes to help Granny with her brother at Gryphon’s soft suggestion. Gryphon cuts Fat Lucca down but leaves him in chains and flies off with him. He contacts Col. Lightning and arranges a meeting to hand off Fat Lucca. Then his gambit paid off when both the Requisitors and the local CSPD didn’t know what to make of the bomb. Gryphon casually mentions it appeared to be made with alien ingredients (assuming Jake used some of that alcohol from off-world and weaponized it). Col. Lightning said the small tests they were able to run placed the explosive yield at just over the size of the Ogilvie sub-district! This bomb would’ve been bigger than Iron Mike’s WINSLOW! Mavis offered to bring it back to Gryphon so he could hand it off to a contact that knew Alpha Prime. However, Col. Lightning mentioned needing to keep their side of the story up so he’d use a third party company he’d used before.

Col. Lightning was curious about evidence and Gryphon mentions the laptop from the first warehouse has Fat Lucca on it. It seems he was working for someone bigger possibly from the Labyrinth, a criminal mastermind that was possibly out of this world smart! Col. Lightning mentioned they may need to team up again and Gryphon agreed. Gryphon handed over the criminal and went back to his house to await Mavis. Soon all the evidence linking Jake to any of this would be in his possession. After seeing Granny’s disregard for public safety he decided that while his normal form holds a ton of bad memories he should probably try and balance time in both forms to not forget what it means to be human.

 


All art by Adamantium_Art
I don’t know where the fake commercial on YouTube came from but it is stellar funny!
Come watch the next game for our super friends on HippoTV!

 

5 Replies to “If You Hunt Monsters Be Careful Not To Become One”

  1. So much about this session was out of control! The heroes arguing with each other in front of a ticking bomb was classic!

  2. Veridian Dynamics is the company that the main character works for in Better Off Ted. There are a bunch of the commercials, and they are all awesome. VD is evil…

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