1963-11-04 - (Un)Quiet Riot
Summary: A riot breaks out in Mutant Town, interfering with almost everybody's plans. Eventually the police arrive.
Related: None
Theme Song: None
alexander sean karolina jono 

With the attacks at City Hall becoming city-wide news, Mutant Town has very quickly become a destination for anti-mutant protestors, carrying hastily-made signs decrying the mutant presence in the city. These types of gatherings never turn out peaceful, it seems; when you get a large number of angry, prejudiced, people in one place, it doesn't very often end in a nice little sit-in with kum-by-ahs and tambourines. The crowds are loud, boisterous, and looking for any reason to spill over into violence. Here at the edge of Mutant Town, where the protestors have gathered, most of the mutant residents of the area have the good sense to steer clear, but there are always those who would stand up to the growing hate. They're few now, but no doubt their number will grow in time. So far, the small group of mutants, a mix of those with obvious differences and some who look mostly normal, have managed to not incite the crowd before them to violence, but their mere presence here will be enough to escalate things beyond the scope of a simple protest.

Alex isn't a mutant, and he doesn't have anything against mutants, so he's in the area, but not as a protestor on either side. Large crowds where emotions are already running high are kind of like catnip to the God of Fear. Right now, he's standing among the pro-human camp, but not joining in their chants, yells, or whathave you. Just there, obvserving, drawing it in. Listening to the fears in the heads of the protestors, savouring them, cataloguing them, and just waiting for things to go south, because inevitably, they will. They always do.


Lucy isn't a mutant but she isn't human, either. All she wants is to go to the store but she's afraid of crossing through the crowd between her and the bodega. She starts down the sidewalk but the closer she gets to the crowd, the more anxious she gets.

Brave heart, Lucy, she tells herself. Still. She's fiddling with her bracelet, standing there on the street corner, working up her nerve.

I look normal, she thinks. I'll be okay. But that hardly seems fair, does it? To be okay just because she looks human with her bracelet on.


Sean has been slowly working to gather the trust of various pro-mutant groups as part of his plot to infiltrate said groups. Part of their talk is standing up for mutants and protecting them from these types of riots and harassment. Cutting short his plans of getting obliterated in an Irish pub somewhere tonight, he has decided instead to see if he can't try and keep the peace and at the same time make an impression as someone who wants to stand up for mutants.

Dressed in a decidedly non-agent way, Sean is wearing a plain white tee-shirt, jeans and biker boots. It's a far cry from his normal suits and whatnot. He has been milling around on the more mutant side of the fence keeping an eye on the protestors in case they start to cross the line from chanting to violence.


Jonothon Starsmore's problem is precisely the opposite of Lucy's: all he wants is to go home. As he peers flatly towards the growing gathering that stands between himself and Mutant Town, he can't help but feel a little grateful that the weather is cool enough that his leather jacket and scarf don't seem too out of place.

Still. Jono adjusts his scarf, making sure it stays up near his nose where it belongs, before he shoves both hands into his pockets. Alright, then. Nothin' for it.

With an air of resignation, Jono puts his head down and starts walking for the crowd, intended to shoulder his way through and just go home.


These kinds of events are usually egged on by one or two ringleaders, and this one is no different. At the front of the pro-human side of the protest are two middle-aged men, shouting louder than anyone else, who's slogans and chants are quickly picked up by those around them; indeed, the others seem to be looking toward the two men for inspiration and leadership, and they're more than happy to oblige, riling the crowd up with ease. On the opposite side, a single mutant stands out as the leader, a rather short, stout man in perhaps his early thirties; not particularly 'mutant-looking', apart from the fact that he has a third eye. Bet his depth perception is /awesome/. On the mutant side, the level of anger is just as high, though it's more about defending their own way of life and their rights as people, rather than trying to push the other group out of the city. You know, your fairly typical racial standoff. But it isn't the human side that throws the first stone, metaphorically or physically. There's always one black sheep. The rock arcs over the 'neutral zone', such as it is, and strikes one of the human ringleaders directly in the face; it's not a big rock, but it's thrown with enough force that the man goes down, clutching his right cheekbone where the rock had broken the skin.

Of course, their leader being attacked just sets the protestors off, and soon there are rocks being lobbed back at the mutants. Despite the effort by the mutant leadership to quell any more rash decisions, a couple of the less calm members of that camp join in. Alex slips through the crowd, using his power of fear delicately to compel the humans to at least clear him a path when necessary, until he can get near the front of the crowd. Quick reflexes let him dodge incoming stones, though not everyone can say the same on either side.

The human protestors on the rear edge of the crowd, eager to get more involved, don't react too kindly to Jono trying to his trying to push his way through. "Hey, watch it," one of the men says, pushing back against him. "Lose the mask, man, or do you want to get mistaken for one of those freaks?"


Well. Shit. Shit, shit, shit. Lucy doesn't swear, she doesn't, only New York gives her so many damn reasons. This can't be hapepning. Not in her neighborhood.

Lucy slings her bag across her chest so both her hands are free, then pulls her bracelet off with a sharp twist. Not wanting to lose it, she shoves it in her bra, because no one's getting in there and it's made to make sure nothing gets out. She learned her lesson about bags and pockets, thanks.

"Enough!" She's not very loud but she is incredibly obvious. The moment the bracelet is off, a brilliant glow seeps out of her skin, her hair floats on some kind of rainbow light, and her feet come off the ground. Extending her hands, she raises a shimmering barrier between the mutants and the humans, separating them as best she can.

She's still new to this, it's not perfect, it's not a complete dome, but it is fairly effective — for now.


To no one in particular Sean comments "Well shite, there goes the moral highground." What is that saying about casting the first stone.. or something? He elbows his way forward on the pro mutant side and is just about to create a barrier between the two groups when Rainbow Brite beats him to it.

He glances around at the barrier to see if it looks sufficient and after a couple rocks and bottles bounce off, he satisfied enough to turn back to the mutant group and address them, "Keep yer heads on. They're in the wrong, they need t'leave, but if we attack them another mutant somewhere is goin' t'pay the price." His voice sounds for all the world like he has a megaphone but he barely appears to be shouting at all.

As screams of hate come from the human side Sean spins and yells, loud enough to hurt some folks ears "Fuck. Off. B'fore ye get hurt. Go home!"


When Jono more or less bounces off a larger man's shoulder as they push back, he gives them a rather flat look, one of his eyebrows giving a slight twitch. But before he can reply, Lucy does her thing,and he finds himself staring along with everybody else, both eyebrows leaping up his forehead in genuine surprise. He didn't know anybody in the neighborhood could do that.

It takes him a second, but Jono realizes he has an opportunity. He puts his head down and tries to take advantage of Lucy's display to make some progress moving through the crowd — and then Sean yells.

Jono's hands come clamping down over his ears, the motion jarring enough to send his scarf askew… which means that, for all and sundry to see in the middle of a highly agitated crowd, the young man's face seems to burst into flame.

« … bollocks. »


Several things happen. The wall easily blocks the barrage of stones being thrown from both sides of the line, allowing those who were previously ducking for cover to get back up, including the injured human leader, newly invigorated in his anger. A few of the humans bravely push up against the wall that Karolina has thrown up, finding it most solid, but not steel. And it's not burning their hands off, which is a plus. Noticing this, the two men at the head of the crowd urge their compatriots to knock it down, literally. Fists, feet, and even bodies, are thrown against the shield as they attempt to force their way through it. The human contingent certainly isn't going to put up with a bunch of mutant freaks using their freak powers against them.

Alex can't help but let out a little laugh at the stupidity on both sides. He slips back away from the front of the crowd, sensing a sudden spike in fear from the back of the crowd.

Sean's scream causes people on both sides of the line to cover their ears instinctively, and a few of them even heed his advice; but not many. On the human side, mob mentality has largely taken over, and on the mutant side it's about defending their lives now, as much as their rights. The appearance of the wall, and Sean's obviously powered volume causes the apparent leader of the mutant group to get up and address his side directly, imploring them to stop. "No! If you use your powers against them, that is just giving them more ammunition to use against us! We must keep calm and steadfast in the face of their hatred!" Such advice probably sounded /great/ at the start of this whole thing, but now with physical force becoming a factor, a peaceful resistance seems less likely; the other mutants, particularly those with more offensive powers, don't exactly seem to agree.

Meanwhile, Jono's been exposed. When the flames burst from his face, the protestors around him grow even more enraged. Some are scared at first, but they've got numbers on their side. A couple of the larger members of the group rush toward the young mutant, meaning to grab him and wrestle him to the ground, while another one shouts to alert the rest of the crowd, "WE GOT ONE! WE GOT ONE!" The news travels fairly quickly forward, but for the moment at least the leadership seems more intent on collapsing the wall of light that has been erected between them and Mutant Town.


That wall is not going to last forever, but only because Lucy will eventually try to protect her friend — and leave the humans to whatever her mutant neighbors might do to them. For the moment, though, she rises up above the mutant crowd, pouring what she can into her barrier and letting the light radiate from her, trying to buy Sean some time to calm things down — at least on their side of things.

Lucy hangs there over the crowd, rainbows flowing from her, keeping her wall as strong as she can, adjusting it to meet the assaults against it. If nothing else, she hopes she might make a target of herself. She can withstand a lot of abuse and she knows optics — the political kind. Getting caught on camera attacking someone who looks like a human-sized Tinkerbell doesn't make very good press.


Glancing over at the multi colored protector Sean asks "How ye holdin' up? If ye can't keep that wall up, I c'n take over.." He is glad to not have to though because maybe he can stop this from escalating. He is about to turn back to the mutant crowd when he hears the cries of having one from the other side.

"Drop the shield, let me get through!" He is launching himself airborne towards the shield, which hopefully Karolina can drop at will, otherwise this should be fun to watch. If he can get through the shield, he's hoping to fly towards where the light went off, before Jono get's buried under a sea of fists.


ROLL: Karolina +rolls 1d100 for a result of: 7


Oh, good. Large, excitable thugs are rushing Jono and shouting 'we got one', his afternoon is rapidly progressing from Good to Great. More than anything else, Jono is surprised. Normally, his appearance is enough to send people running in the other direction, so being rushed actually catches him flat-footed. « Wait, wha — »

He's not hard to get ahold of. A loud, irritable-sounding « OY, GERROFF — » sounds in the minds of those nearby even as Jono finds himself being piled on, oblivious to any sort of assistance that might be coming from the other half of the crowd.

So if any would-be rescuers get caught in the very sharp spike of psionic pain that Jono lashes out at his attackers with to try and drive them off, well. That's his bad.


The protestors trying to overpower Jono are suddenly overcome with pain, clutching their heads between their hands. A couple of them actually drop to a knee, but anger and mob-mentality are powerful motivators, "Fuckin' mind-controllin' freak," the largest and most mentally fortified among them shouts, and drives an elbow toward the young man's face, aiming to knock him out.

They might not be too quick on the draw, but the humans at the front of the mob eventually put two and two together and realize that Karolina, the rainbow-clad fairy princess, is the one responsible for the wall. They double their efforts to push through the shield she's thrown up, angry not just at the fact that they're up against a group of mutants now, but that they would dare try to use their powers against decent, normal folk. And for once, the humans didn't even start it! While Karolina might be cognizant enough to realize how such a thing would look, the human protestors aren't terribly concerned with being splashed across the front page; they might even think they'd come off as heroes, at this point.

"No no no!" The self-appointed three-eyed leader of the mutants, ineffective though his guidance may have been up to this point, shouts. "We need to keep calm! Violence is not the answer!" And then the realization that there is mutant on the other side of the line hits him, and he has a momentary lapse in his resolve, but recovers from it quickly enough. "We can't cross the line. If they harm one of us, they doom their cause!" Heartless bastard.

Alexander slips out of the crowd just in time that Jono might spot him, and his eyes, glowing white, just before the elbow comes at him. "Back off him," he orders, his voice cold as steel. But even as a few of the men surrounding Jono back off, fear washing over them, the large man who had thrown the elbow doesn't seem immediately affected. "Fuck off, kid," he says, apparently oblivious to the white eyes. Or he just doesn't care.


Lucy means to let the flying man through, she does. She can't get her shield down in time — or in just one place. Sean bounces against the shield — it gives like a giant sheet of rubber — but then it's gone.

"I'm sorry, I'm new," she says. This is no time to be embarrassed, though. The shield frays and comes to pieces around Lucy, below her the humans pressing against it fall forward and she squeaks with frustration. At least they're off guard just now, that will let her regroup.

She does agree about needing not to be violent, though. It looks like someone's with Jono right now, and…she can read body language well enough to know things are going downhill very, very fast. One more try holding the line, this time with a lower barrier so that fliers like the one she accidentally thwarted can pass.


Screaming his way to the rescue sure looks all cool and heroic right up until the point where the wall doesn't come down fast enough and Sean barely has enough time to redirect some energy.. BONK! Coming back down cursing creatively "Fuckity shite damn amateurs piece of garb.." THUD! He hits the ground, and grumbles as he stands, dusting himself off. He recovers enough to look over at Karolina and give her a thumbs up "Nice wall. Yer doin' a great job lass…" Yes, he should be encouraging and mean that, but no, he doesn't.

Taking off again, this time he lands nearby Jono shouts "BAAACK" with enough force behind it to push any nearby people away. If that works he turns to Jono and offers his hand, "We sh'd go.. take my hand."


Getting most of his attackers jarred loose is enough to satisfy Jono, really. One guy left isn't a big deal, right? He's been in bar fights before, how bad could it be? Especially since, to his visible surprise, he seems to have back-up. Even if he's not sure he wants it. He doesn't know what it is about Alex — it's not the eyes, those actually don't bother him — but the guy gives him the heebie-jeebies.

So it's probably good that a screaming Irishman snaps Jono out of his surprise and effectively dislodges the one remaining attacker before he can catch an elbow in the face. This is a very strange day.

Jono eyes Sean's outstretched hand before, almost reluctantly, he reaches out to take it and haul himself back up to his feet. « Ta, I think. Try not t'get yer heads caved in on my account. »


The sudden appearance of a screaming Irishman easily subdues the remaining assailant trying to muscle Jono to the ground. He is thrown afield by the sonic power, but so too is Alex; the jolt distracts him, to say the least, and knocks him to the ground, causing him to lose his mental hold on the other men.

When the wall of light comes down, several of the protestors fall forward flat on their faces. When they get up, they're ready to charge ahead and bash some skulls. But before they can, thankfully, another wall goes up. But not before a few of the quicker humans get ahead of it, and scramble across the line at the group of mutants. They're not armed, but they're not small, and they're full of piss and vinegar, as the saying goes. "Get her!" one of the more astute ones shouts, picking up a rock to hurl at Karolina. His aim isn't bad, either. The others barrel into the ground-based mutants, and it's a good old-fashioned fistfight; Triclops and his ilk even get involved, because they don't have much other choice but to defend themselves, though none of them yet seem willing to use whatever powers they might possess, if any.

Alex manages to get himself back to his feet, in time to see Sean reaching to help Jono up. "Thanks for that," he mutters, a little bitter about being so easily knocked around by the very loud Irishman. A few of the other protestors start in toward the two mutants, but Alex's voice cuts through the din, his eyes glowing again. "Lay a finger on another mutant and you'll go through the rest of life a eunuch," he growls at them; whether or not they understand what 'eunuch' is, it at least has the desired effect. They back off, and in fact scramble to get the hell out of dodge. "Get yourselves out of here, boys," he commands Jono and Sean, as the white of his eyes intensifies, and the whole of his body takes on a dim glow, before he steps back into the crowd. Oddly, the other protestors don't seem to take much notice.


Lucy is so tired of all of this. She's tired of the fighting and the egos and the hatred and she's got nothing to do with it herself — this isn't even her planet, apparently. Then people start throwing rocks. The first one catches her by surprise, knocks her back. The second bounces off her shoulder.

"Will you just stop?" Her temper takes over and she starts using beams of light to separate people as best she can, dropping almost to the ground — it's too hard for to focus to keep her feet down where they should be. "Please, this is ridiculous."

Someone punches her and it's enough to stagger her so she does the only thing she can — pushes heat and light out of her skin so that she's almost too bright to look at, hot to the touch.


Grabbing Jono's hand, Sean shoots a confused look at the other young man. "Boys?" Is all he gets out before he snaps back to the rescue. He says apologeticly to Jono, "This is gonna be loud." Sure enough, with another yell he lifts off and pulls Jono with him up over the barrier. Setting Jono on the ground, Sean then turns towards the remain humans on the other side of the wall and sets himself up as a one man sonic deterrent. The directed noise doesn't affect anyone behind him, but the loud, overbearing noise is painful for anyone in front. And man, he is LOUD.


« Eunuch? » There's a moment of silence and then the corners of Jono's eyes turn upwards, as though he were smiling. « I like him. »

There is an unspoken noise of surprise that comes from Jono when Sean hauls him up and over the barrier, his eyes momentarily going wide. He will not cling to the strange man, not even if they're up this high, he has his dignity to think of. Which is why, once he's on the ground again, Jono looks very much like he'd drop to his knees and kiss it if he had a mouth to do it with. Thank goodness. It's much safer… over…

…nevermind. Jono doesn't recognize Lucy as his neighbor, having never seen her like this before, but he doesn't like men ganging up on girls one bit. Narrowing his eyes, he balls up his fists and immediately strides her way, bringing one arm up to try and shield his eyes as she grows brighter.


The men trying to attack Lucy are thoroughly blinded, if temporarily, by the sudden shock of brightness the girl emits. Arms go up to shield eyes, and it takes them several seconds to recover their vision. But when they do, it's back to throwing rocks and trying to knock her down with fists, feet, and whatever else. It may not be entirely effective, given her current state of sun-like radiance. Jono, newly arrived on the scene on this side of the line, is fair game as well, a target of opportunity. Sorry, English, not much better on this side. Of course, with Sean now in play screaming his head off at the oncoming assailants, there are significantly less protestors, if we can still call them that, to worry about. The screams keep most of them at bay, even now that the wall has come down.

The as-yet-unnamed mutants are not faring particularly well against the humans that have charged across the divide; if they have powers, they're not using them, and if they don't, well, they're not great fighters to make up for it. These must have been the peaceful hippy variety, with physical mutations that don't offer a lot of benefit in a fist-fight. Purple skin, extra eyes, feathers for hair. That kind of thing. They're getting trounced.

Meanwhile, across the divide where we last saw Alex disappear into the mob, things are getting quiet. Sure, some of the protesters are still trying to get through to the other side, but most are being repelled by Sean's powerful vocals. Slowly, though, the crowd is dispersing, as Alex's extends his own power to the mob. Fear and dread wash over the humans, in nonspecific terms. There's plenty of fear already there for Alex to work with, he doesn't have to look very hard anyone to pick something to amplify, and most react with a sudden need to vacate the premises. It's not immediate, and it's not everybody, but after a few minutes, a good portion of the human protesters have decided to pack it in and leave before things get /really/ bad. What that means, is anyone's guess. Alex appears at the front of the group soon enough, not getting close enough to be hit by Sean's sonic powers, but close enough to start affecting the other humans, and some of the mutants themselves. He won't be fast enough to convince them all to stop before the police arrive, though. Sirens are already getting louder, indicating that the authorities will be on the scene in short order.


"You have to stop!" Lucy is trying to keep some kind of order around her, trying to defend the mutants who can't help themselves. She sees Jono, over the heads of the remaining crowd but can't leave the people she's trying to help to get to him. She's not refined enough with her powers to corral the humans, all she can do is use herself, and what force she can muster, as a shield. Her only comfort is that, when the police arrive, she'll be able to fade into the crowd as soon as she has her bracelet on.


Fists clenched at his sides, Jono glares daggers towards the group that's begun throwing things at Lucy. The ones throwing things at him don't even seem to register on him — beyond being targets.

That fire that makes up his jaw and chest suddenly flares and grows in size, and several lines of that psionic fire come lancing outwards from Jono's chest — one for each of the humans throwing stones towards Lucy and himself. It isn't actual fire, but a psionic attack meant to knock them cold. If they hurt themselves falling down, that isn't his bloody problem.

He can't hear the sirens over Sean's wailing, and he lost his scarf in the crowd. When the police show up, Jono's going to stick out like a very sore thumb.


Jono's psionic flame does indeed knock the attacking humans down, and out. If they're seriously injured in the fall, it's not only not Jono's problem, but they're awfully quiet about it, being unconscious. The wave of fear emanating from Alex hits those on the mutant side of the line, and the remaining humans are suddenly overtaken with dread, backing off from the fight. Some, but not all, of the mutants are hit with the same sense of panic and fear, and that, combined with Jono and Lucy's displays of power, seem enough to bring the eruption of violence to a quick end. And just in time, as police cruisers move into place around the area, blocking exits. Megaphones come out, and authoritative voices call out for everyone to get on the ground, hands on heads. Police officers move in, starting to quell and cuff any who would dare resist the orders, night-sticks and guns brandished both for show and purpose, if necessary. Alex moves quickly across the area, bee-lining for Jono and Lucy, ignoring the less impressive mortals he might come across. "Come with me, you two," he says, motioning for them to follow him out of the immediate area. He doesn't seem all that concerned about the police, at least not for his own sake.


Lucy gives up all propriety to dig her bracelet out of her bra. The moment she slides the unbroken circle back around her wrist — somehow it just snaps on — her light goes out and she's just another girl. Ordinary. Rumpled, bruised, distressed, and very human.

"Jono!" He needs something to cover him up, she pulls off her jacket so Jono can use it to hide himself a little better. "We have to get you hidden," she murmurs, catching up to him.


When the attackers go down, Jono looks quite satisfied, straightening up and tugging his jacket straight. Hmpf. Serves them ri— « Lucy? » He sounds very surprised now that he can recognize the girl, too surprised to even protest when he's getting a coat shoved into his face.

That's when the police finally register on his awareness. « Oh, bollocks. Right, follow him, » he says with a blink, immediately reaching for one of Lucy's hands before he starts hurrying after Alex. No idea who the guy is, but he's done Jono a solid already. Any port in a storm.


One of the nice things about being God of Fear? When you want people to leave you alone, they leave you alone. Alex guides them past the police, giving the cops in immediate range a sudden sense that these are people they do /not/ want to mess with, which allows them to beat a hasty exit without being hassled. Of course, putting some unexpected fear into their hearts might end up causing more suspicion later, but that's not Present Alex's problem.

Alex leads the two up some side-streets and down some alleys, away from the epicentre of the commotion. Far enough that they'll avoid any kind of perimeter search for instigators, if such a thing is to be undertaken. It might well be a bit further afield than either of them wanted to go tonight, but that's the price you pay for randomly being in the wrong place at the wrong time. "You two have somewhere you can lay low of a bit?" He asks, once they're out of the danger zone, so to speak. "Hope you didn't live too close to there.. I mean, you both kind of made a spectacle of yourselves."


"No one's going to recognize me. I have to go back," Lucy says anxiously. So much for the milk. "My…my Laura. I can't let her be on her own with things like that going on." Not for her sake — for everyone else. "Jono…"

There are sewers. And, in Mutant Town, they serve as a secondary set of sidewalks for some of the stranger looking types. "We can go down. There should be a manhole not too far from here. Mama Mae told me that we can come out right by the house if we keep our bearings. Thank you, though," she says to Alex. "That was very good of you to help."

With that, she heads for the nearest intersection, looking for the right kind of manhole cover. Jono will catch up and they'll get home — worse for wear, but home.


Jono isn't sure how good he'll be at laying low, with a jacket wrapped around his face, but, well. « I'll make due, » he assures Alex with a nod of his head, raking both hands back over his hair. « Thanks fer the save, mate. Twice. I'll o— » Wait.

He turns to give Lucy a somewhat quizzical look, his brow furrowing. « Your Laura? She's — oh, f'r pity's sake, she's going to be fine. Lucy..! » But there's nothing for it. Lucy's looking for a manhole cover and Jono gives Alex a longsuffering look before he turns to follow in the blonde's wake. « Honestly. If she gets me arrested, I'm going to take it personal. »


Alex gives the pair a nod. "Perhaps we'll meet again, under better circumstances. Good luck to you both. And yes, don't get arrested," he says with a smirk, before the pair depart fully. Alex turns and starts back down the street. Noble deed accomplished!

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