1963-11-20 - Bring the Thunder
Summary: Cable and Gamora do a little house cleaning.
Related: None
Theme Song: None
gamora cable 

It's nearly two AM in Manhattan, and Palermo's Imported Cheeses is only just beginning its real business for the day. A sprawling emporium on an East Harlem corner, it belies its name by stocking a wide array of meats, wines, oils, olives, and - of course - cheeses for the homesick/curious masses— until ten, when the owner locks up and leaves his key in a little crack beside the back door, as instructed by his landlord.

By ten forty-five, members and associates of the Mazzanti crew are hard at work in a series of back rooms not available on any of Palermo's floor plans, cutting and packaging the seemingly endless stream of white powder that finds its way to them.

On a good, productive night, now is when the men would likely be considering lunch and/or cigarette breaks; instead, they find themselves racing to pack what they can and destroy the rest as gunfire thunders across the store floor.

Out there - readily visible through the vast, largely empty windows dominating sections of Palermo's walls - a man with white hair, a gleaming arm, and an enormous rifle strapped to his back darts between store shelves while mafia muscle teems through the aisles on his heels. Now and again, the towering cyborg pops out behind or beside a man who has separated himself from the others, cuts him down with a Thompson, and disappears, prompting a frenzy of reciprocal fire from the survivors that shreds displays and showers the sidewalk with glass.


At the end of one of those displays, the white-haired man will find himself face to face with a green-skinned woman. Three mobster bodies are at her feet, and she hasn't made a sound. She hasn't made a sound, but the pair of bloody blades in her hands are a pretty good clue as to what she's been up to.

"I'm interested in the bounty here," Gamora whispers to him. She looks him up and down appraisingly. She's curious, and apparently unafraid. "You may continue to assist me if you like. I will share the bounty with you." She's not threatening, or trying to challenge. She is just outlining one possible path forward.


Amber light flashes across green skin when Cable is abruptly faced with the newcomer, courtesy of his widened, perpetually glowing left eye.

Without missing a beat, he thrusts a Thompson - he's carrying two, because it would clearly be a waste of an arm not to - forward, stopping just short of trying to press it into her belly.

He seems, perhaps, a touch less surprised than he ought to be.

'The bounty', he mouths after her, flicking his eyes briefly to the bodies as his brows arch. When the time his eyes meet hers - and the barrel drops - it's with undisguised incredulity. "'Share the bounty', eh," he flatly replies. "Right. They're down five, now; that leaves six more. The plan was to get them so amped up and turned around that they'd be too wrapped up in shooting at shadows to notice me going after it."

Another look down.

"I'm betting that you're just going to kill them all, though."


Amidst the chaos, Angelo - the only made man among the Mazzantis tonight - races between rooms, shouting, "Where's the fuckin' mutie, goddamnit?! These motherless pricks think they can take a— HEY!" Angelo sticks his head into a store room where crates are being hastily unpacked so that packages of dope can be hidden amongst cheese and oil. Imported goods and straw have been strewn all around the room, but about a dozen crates are already ready to be hauled away— all thanks to one young, blue-skinned man, who appears before the doorway seemingly from nowhere.

"S- sorry," the blue man says without quite looking at Angelo, "I was just—"

"Fuck what you were just— look! I was promised— promised that you were a useful guy to have around, that I wouldn't regret it! So c'mon, getcher ass in gear— show those dead pricks out there why they don't fuck with the Mazzanti crew!"

"But— but I've never—" the blue man weakly protests while shrinking away from Angelo, who advances into the room to seize a bicep.


"I'll watch your back; you get mine—"

"What the—" sputters a prowling soldier when he sees the river of blood streaming from Gamora's kills. A quick jog along it brings the mutant and alien into view, at which point he screams and sprays the air around them with bullets from his own Thompson.

About a third of them just stop after a few feet of flight as Cable and his brightly pulsing eye hit the deck. "Down!"

Since one of them is firing, all of them race through the aisles for vantages on the pair so that they can join in. Some take longer than others before squeezing their triggers, but given a few seconds, all of them will eventually commence trying to fill the two cyborgs with lead.


Gamora nods at the man with the bright eye, and seems to already be in motion when the next good comes in to view, like she knew he was coming. One of her blades is flung, and lands sticking from the goon's right shoulder. What looks like a bad throw turns out to be genius. His gun clatters to the floor, dropped by numb, senseless fingers, but he's still alert enough to be on his feet when she spins around behind him, using him as a human shield.

Hey! Humans are good for something after all! She most definitely does not say out loud.

"I'm Gamora. What do I call you, metal man?" She's focused, and fighting-tense, but her words are calm and collected. This is not her first gun fight, nor the first time she's brought a knife to one.



One after another, a pair of mobsters step into view then promptly drop before getting a shot off when suspended bullets snap through their bodies.


From his crouch, the white-haired cyborg springs up and over one of the shelves, giving him a good view of a third goon hustling towards their position. Before Cable lands in the adjacent aisle, he nearly bisects said goon with a burst from one of his guns— which he then casts aside on account of it running empty.

The man in Gamora's grip writhes and kicks and screams, but he's only a man— or, rather, was only a man. Now, he's merely protection— and indeed, when another of the goons rounds a corner and finds himself looking at her, he hesitates to fire.

The guy who comes racing into the other side of the aisle to pincer her also refrains from firing— but only because he's decided to go with grabbing an olive oil bottle, sprinting at her, and taking his chances, intent on clobbering her upside the head with the thing.

How dangerous could some green broad be without her sword, after all?


"Day plan!" Angelo shouts over the blue mutant's protests while shaking him by the arm. "Fuckin'— day trip! Day's inn! Daydream— what was— fuck, day— spring! Day spring, day spring, you fuck, day spring—!"

The blue man's eyes rapidly dilate, he sucks in a shuddering breath, and the protests die.


Ripping her sword from her hostage's shoulder, Gamora literally kicks his ass, sending him flying hard into the man with the gun. In one smooth motion she turns to face the man with the bottle and actually frowns at him. She /frowns/. With the tangle of men behind her, trying to figure out who's hurt worse, she spins and severs the bottle carriers hand at the wrist. Neat and clean.

In the same motion she plucks the bottle out of the air and sets it down carefully. It could be explosive! That's what they would need to hurt her. It makes sense in her head. To the newly minted 'Lefty' she nods at the door and says, "You are allowed to leave. Speak of Gamora to other lowlifes like yourself."

To Cable, she points at the bottle of olive oil on the floor. "Are you good with explosives?"


"Wh— "

After he staggers backwards a few feet and barely avoids a fall, Lefty's eyes dart down to his hand.

"Whu— my— you— "

Scowling, grimacing, terrified, Lefty runs, cradling his stump to his chest and screaming obscenities.

After watching the man run for a second, Cable peers over the shelf to find the explosive Gamora's— ah.

"Couple ingredients short, innit?" he wonders with an arched brow. His gaze then turns towards the men tangled up behind her, but given Lefty, he opts to let Gamora finish claiming her kills while he turns his attention back to the bottle, which in turn begins to levitate.

Given the terrible shoulder wound and all the blood being spread around, the two men tangled up with one another are mostly just shoving and slapping at one another in confusion and shock.


"My name is Blue Thunder," the mutant intones as it stares through Angelo. "You may direct my wrath as it pleases you."

"The fu— " Angelo catches himself, briskly shakes his head, then lets out a little cackle as he looks Blue Thunder up and down. "Much better! Outside, c'mon! They're—"



The olive oil shatters on the ground as thunder rolls through Palermo's. It's only the first note in a cacophony as product tumbles from shelves in a wave that moves from back to front and fill the floor with a lake of oil, brine, and glass.

Cable manages to say, "What," before the rest of his words are ripped from him by a supersonic impact. He and Blue Thunder barrel through store shelves, his techno-organically enhanced body serving as a shield for the speedster as they race through the store on an erratic course seemingly designed to slam him through as much metal as possible.


Gamora is more than a little confused at the mention of ingredients, but then, she didn't know how this particular explosive worked. And everyone knows terrans aren't exactly known for their cunning.

She has just enough time to give the other goons their night-night temple taps before the shop explodes around them. Gamora winces as she sees olive oil bottles crashing to the floor, and then smirks when none of them blow up. But nevermind! There's enough going on already.

Gamora leaps into action when her ad-hoc partner goes flying away. Pressing her lips together, she sprints through the aftermath, twisting her sword into a slightly longer arrangement which also leaves her left hand unoccupied.

What she doesn't account for is how slippery the non-explosive olive oil actually is. Between the concussions and the shrapnel and just /stuff/ flying everywhere, Gamora's sprint turns into a slide that results her crashing into the two men, in a not particularly graceful way.


Blue Thunder has to deal with the mess he's making of the floor as much as Gamora does, which accounts for at least some of his erratic movements as he tries to stay ahead of the ever-spreading slick. As his possible pathways dwindle down to nothing, he winds up locked into a collision that sends he, Gamora, and Cable rolling through the remnants of an expansive sample display.

It's not a great time for him, given how much sturdier Gamora and Cable both are; the latter may be too dazed and/or studded with broken glass to do much immediately after the three-way crash, but he still manages a couple of metallic elbow strikes during the confusion.

When the tumbling finally stops, Blue Thunder becomes a blur as he extricates himself; the next time he's properly visible, he's standing amidst fallen foods, clutching a cheese knife in one hand and chucking miniature wine glasses at Gamora with the other. His nose is bleeding a little from one of those elbow blows, but his expression is free of pain or panic.


Gamora pops back to her feet as well, somehow finding her grace and balance amidst the oil slick. Then again, this is why her agility is off the charts. As he goes from blur to blur, Gamora watches her opponent, finally one able to present her with a challenge, and under her eye, no detail goes without scrutiny. She didn't earn her reputation by being a sloppy fighter, after all.

So when she stares into Blue's eyes, she furrows her brow and shakes her head. "Not you. You didn't choose this fight. Where is your master?" In a bizarre butterfly knife kind of maneuver, Gamora's sword becomes a double-handled club, with hafts on either end, instead of a cutting blade. "I don't kill slaves."


"Mycommanderchoseit," Blue Thunder intones over the intermittent shattering of glass. "Thatmakesitmine."

His body momentarily solidifies as he shifts the knife in his grip, angling it to stab. Faint, amber light flickers against his brow, and then he's a bullet fired carelessly towards the deadliest woman in at least one galaxy, intent on driving his knife into her from a dozen different angles between heartbeats.

He's fast, unfairly so— but his lack of genuine skill may as well be tattooed across his skin, and the slick spreading across the ground means that he has to struggle for footing, for clear patches of ground as much as anyone does, only at much more dangerous speeds.

Amidst the spilled meats, cheeses, and pickled vegetables, Cable lies still save for the occasional twitch of his left arm; his left eye casts amber strobes across the ceiling while the other stares off into the void.


With only a flicker of a moment to notice Cable's stillness, Gamora's sigh is inward. There's no time for proper exasperation. She deflects most of the slashes with her 'club' from Blue Thunder's knife, though she does have to give up a couple of shallow slashes on her forearm and upper arm.

But taking in her opponent's lack of experience is second nature to Gamora, and she grits her teeth and she deals with the super speed. She's not faster, so she has to fight smarter. Slowly, painfully slow given the circumstances, she takes small steps backwards, letting Blue think he has her on the retreat.

However, once she has him in front of the olive oil shelf she mutters, "Not explosive…" Then, instead of a straight forward attack, she flurries a series of feints with her club, 'accidentally' missing Blue, in favor of smashing a cascade of oil around his feet. When the floor is slick enough, she spins, winding out a savage strike hard enough to break bones. He'll be forced to dodge and hopefully lose his footing, or block and lose something else.


Blue's first instinct is to dodge when Gamora seemingly tries to flip the tables on him, then try to retake whatever momentum he had by throwing himself into a high-speed lunge.

The sound of breaking glass reaches his notice a split-second too late and when he plants his foot to commit to the attack, he finds the floor far slicker than expected. The knife flies out of control as the speedster's body slips, flips, and flies a few feet up into the air before crashing unceremoniously to the ground, silent save for the wet SMAK! of flesh on oiled concrete.

After about a second's rest, he begins to sit up— only to abruptly freeze, then flop to the ground when his jaw is wrenched open with a scream unleashed in unison with Cable.

Once the two men fall silent, Cable sits straight up, then climbs to his feet, rubbing his head and still not quite managing to focus on his immediate surroundings.. Blue Thunder does not move.

"Boss' name is Angelo," he murmurs while panting and carefully pacing across the ground, towards the stock area. "They're packing drugs and money up in some back rooms, getting ready to rabbit. Guy on the ground's a dupe."


Gamora is tense for a long moment, eyeing Blue Thunder distrustfully, but after the dual scream she seems to relax. Ironically enough. "Angelo," Gamora repeats, idly flipping her weapon back into it's standard sword configuration. Her brow furrows at the rest of Cable's words, and it's pretty obvious she's having trouble understanding the big man.

"I've heard these men sell stimulants to human younglings. This 'Angelo' is responsible, yes?" She follows Cable toward the back of the room, stopping only briefly to wipe the soles of her boots off on the fabric of her pants, drying them to the best of her ability. "I intend to kill him. You may leave if you object," she says. She is attempting to sound magnanimous, but of course she can come off as bossy, or even threatening without meaning to.


"Yes and no," Cable grunts in reply as he leads the way into the stock room, past some shelves, to a false wall still twisted ajar by Blue Thunder's passage. Scuffling sounds and frantic voices leak from beyond as the Mazzantis race on the other end of about ten feet of dark hallway to get the rest of their goods packed into their vehicles. "He's responsible for a segment of it; someone else is responsible for him and others like him. Someone else still supplies that person the stimulants that Angelo and his peers sell."

Rather than squeeze through the crack in the false wall, Cable draws his arm back and slases it through that space, cleaving the entire thing away so that he and Gamora can both pass unabated. With his Thompsons long gone, he resorts to a knife sheathed among the many pouches around his waist as he swiftly approaches the door at the other end.

"Which is why I am gonna have to object to killing him," he concludes mid-advance. "Not to mention what happened to that mutant back there. Whatever he knows is more valuable than whatever you'll get from his death. At least, in the short-term"


Not always one to consider the long game, the bigger picture, the deeper ramifications, Gamora is also not ignorant to her own occasional short-sightedness. To her credit, she listens to Cable's argument and takes a breath.

"I understand. This man is only the tail. We will question him." With that acknowledgement, an experienced fighter will notice her subtle adjustment in her sword grip and stance as they approach the fight. Non-lethal sword fighting requires a different approach.

And without any more fan fair than that, Gamora kicks down the last door in the hallway and becomes a whirling dervish herself. But rather than neck and gut slashes, she removes hands and feet wherever she can. When she pauses to get her bearings, three men are missing two hands and four feet between them.

Her sword is so sharp, at least one man's hand has flopped onto the floor before he even feels the pain enough to scream.


Once Gamora confirms that she's on the same page, Cable readily stands aside to let her take point on the breach. Across three rooms strewn with drugs, guns, and money; and a short hall leading to an open back door, Gamora artfully subdues the remaining Mazzanti affiliates while the cyborg heads out into the alley.

Shortly after she finishes, he leans in to report, "Two cars gone. No sign of hostiles in the immediate vicinity," and quickly flick his non-glowing eye across her moaning, freely bleeding handiwork.

"Guessing we won't have to ask them anything twice," he flatly suggests while stepping inside. As the door shuts behind him, his left eye flares to life and he advances on the nearest of the men, the one who's only just getting around to screaming.

"Did you see Ang— "

Cable stands there with his mouth ajar for several seconds as his eye continues to pulse.

"— no," he eventually mutters. "Gone— hh— of course." Rubbing his temple, he looks up and continues, "Alright, there's just been a fire fight in the middle of a residential area," at a more audible level. "So, quickly: let's grab the money and bring the powder out to the front of the store. We can egress to a safe place to split the take; I'll deal with the drugs. We can split the survivors, for all I care; deal?"

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