1964-06-11 - Flame, Blades and Strength verses Spiders
Summary: In which Hercules, Akihiro and Johnny deal with crazy extradimensional spiders.
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
Theme Song: None
akihiro hercules johnny-storm 

The sun set two hours ago, and while Harlem isn't especially quiet, it isn't especially busy tonight, at least besides through traffic.

Johnny Storm is walking along the street from the direction of Central Park, wearing jeans, a dark blue t-shirt and leather jacket. Why is he walking? Well, because he's flirting, that's why. A very pretty lady is walking beside him, his arm around her waist, a bit too low then would be proper. He's chuckling and chatting her up as they walk the city at night.

There's no reason there should be trouble here: and yet one moment all is fine, and then silver threads stretch from one edge of an alley to the other. And then another thread, and another thread. It is like a giant, nearly glowing spider weba ppears.

And then the swarm comes. Dozens of small crystalline spiders, each the color of milky quartz with veins of pulsing black visible within their structure. They are faceted like cut gems, and look like solid crystal but move as if alive. Each is the size of a small cat. Behind the swarm comes larger versions, about the size of a small dog. And then, emerging from the web and climbing up the walls are the masters— the monsters. The size of a large dog, these brutes seem at first to be observing and not engaging.

"… whoa. Honey, run. Run that way and don't look back." Johnny gives a gentle but firm push at the lady back to the park, and then he bursts into pure, living plasma.

Hercules had been enjoying himself at a local bar, offering up arm-wrestling to any of the local strongmen who wanted to play. They had no chance, of course, but it was fun to watch them try and Hercules would always buy them a beer afterwards to soothe any hurt feelings.

When he sees some of the monstrosities skitter across the window of the bar, he can't help but get a grin. "Stay inside, mortals! The siren song of battle calls, but only for heroes this day. Place your hope in Hercules!"

He steps outside, only to find himself confronted by one of the dog-sized spiders. It leaps upon him, only to be welcomed with a headbutt, driving it backwards to smack into a car across the street.

"The battle is met! Come, you denizens of the underworld! Come face your fate at the feet of the Son of Zeus!"

The woman that was with Johnny runs off, bumping into a hooded figure. He starts to protest but notices the spiders, his blossoming foul mood clearing up. One of the small spiders leaps at him, only to be caught and crushed in his hand.

"A welcome home party? For me? You shouldn't have." A grin creeps across his face as he unzips his jacket and lets it fall behind him, revealing him to be none other than Akihiro Howlett. "Who's ready to party?"

WHUMP. One of the large spiders charges the teen and sends him slamming into the side of a van, leaving a rather nasty indention.

Johnny pauses, eyeing Hercules for a long moment, flaming head tilted to the side. Hey, that guy seems to have an ego that the Human Torch can appreciate. It isn't often he finds someone who seems to think of themselves as well as Johnny thinks of himself. So distracted by this evaluation, Johnny doesn't notice a swarm of nearly a dozen of the smaller spiders surge towards him, leaping— but as they pass through his plasma form, they are incinerated and turned to dust. The little ones don't seem able to survive contact with him. It is one of the medium spiders that has Johnny's attention. He stalks towards it and it stalks towards him, and as the Torch nears it his flame burns from red to yellow to white, and they leap at eachother. The spider, somehow, manages to cling to what shouldn't be clingable, and it doesn't doe instantly like the small ones do. They crash into a car, the glass melting, and Johnny grapples with it. It tries to stab him with its sharp legs, but that is ineffective, and one of its legs melts off where Johnny focuses his strength. Then there is a flare of silver white thread that wraps around the flaming one and seems resistant to fire, and suddenly Johnny finds his flaming self stuck to a car. "… this is not okay with me."

Hercules finds a few trying to swarm him, swinging his massive, tree-trunk arms and flinging a few of the peskier ones off. He sees Johnny in full flame form and grins broadly, "Greetings, Vulcan! Put these beasts through the forge while I deal with their fatter cousins!" he cries. He hasn't seen Akihiro as of yet, but he isn't the most observant of fellows.

He sees one of the larger specimens and starts charging towards it, taking a few loping steps before he leaps up into the air, clasping his hands together to bring them down in a double-fisted hammer, the carapace of the thing crackling under the impact of his impossibly strong blow, "HAVE AT YOU, BEAST!"

"Alright, that's your on-" Before Akihiro can finish talking and pull himself up, a claw comes down onto the top of his head. Normally that'd be the end, but a pair of claws punch through the spider's torso, putting it out of it's misery. Throwing the thing off of himself Daken rises to his feet, a portion of his face peeled off to reveal the metal skull underneath.

"You're starting to piss me off." There's a soft snikt sound as two of the claws on his other hand extend. The smaller spiders that had been circling the van leap at him, each one getting cut down in turn.

Johnny focuses: and what is a pale white becomes incandescent, and only at that maximum heat does the webbing burn away. A moment later, Johnny is punching into the medium spider that webbed him and his hand goes through it, melting it until it turns to dust. His coloring fading back to red, he rises up into the air and takes stalk of the situation. There's a surprised look at Hercules as the man names him Vulcan, but he grins— such as it is when he's pure plasma— and waves, "Hey, man, I'm not Vulcan. I'm the Human Torch!" He is amazed someone doesn't know him. But he will happily— then his attention falls on Akihiro and his exposed metal skull, and that gives him pause. "Uhh, man, your face is—" He tries to think of how to put this, "… not so much on your face." And with that, he surges over at a swarm that is racing towards a fleeing civilian. Fire arcs out before him and incinerates some, and then he lands and is spinning around, grabbing and stepping on and otherwise just burning the little monsters as they try to use overwhelming numbers to win where their larger siblings use great force.

Hercules punches his way through his initial target, leaving a splayed group of spider limbs around him, before moving onto the next. He grasps one of the medium sized creatures by a leg and starts to use it as a flail, slapping and beating at the various horde with its quickly damaged carcass.

"A torch, you say? With such flames, you would be better named a volcano! A sun! At least a large bonfire," he says with a grin.

He feels one leap on his back, fruitlessly trying to jab its legs through his invulnerable hide, and he grasps at it, just out of reach, "Damnable thing! Face me like a man, swine!" he says, finally turning and slamming his back into a nearby wall to crush the pest.

"Was a little busy!" Akihiro calls back to Johnny, taking the free moment to press the skin flap up against his skull, holding it there for several seconds until it's healed. Those seconds are more than enough time for that large spider to return, slamming him into a brick wall. The impact would be more than enough to break a regular person, but Daken is thankfully sturdier than the generic brand.

Sizing the spider up he decides to charge it, an idea the crystaline creature can get behind. Leaping it goes to ram him again, only to find itself skewered on four claws. A sharp leg lashes out from the impaled but still alive creature, opening the Japanese man's throat and splattering blood onto the sidewalk.

|ROLL| Johnny Storm +rolls 1d100 for: 82

Johnny isn't sure how to deal with this: this guy is friendly but he, seriously, does not seem to know who he is. How is that possiblie? He's Johnny Storm! Its like the world turned upside down. But, he'll have to deal with that later. Settling down to the ground, Johnny considers the foes, and sees a pair of medium spiders trying to stalk him, and he stalks them in return. This is all a ruse, showing the creatures can coordinate, for suddenly one of the large crystal spiders leaps over a car and pushes Johnny to the ground. Again the larger ones seem able to deal with the Torch even though he's in pure flame mode, but deal with and cause damage two are two different things: there's simply no flesh to hurt. The spider and the fire grapple and struggle, and then Johnny swings a fist towards the joint between its body segments: at the last moment his hand burns as pure, bright incandescent white and it melts right through that weak spot, and the large spider dissolves into dust. He leaps up to the air, and calls out to Hercules, "It's not actually a man… man! But, hey. The name has history, you know? It's a brand, something people know and flock to and adore or admire." And then he checks to see if Akihiro is doign okay— and it looks like he sees a possibly killing blow, so he flies like a burning comet rush to his aide, to try to strike into and shove away the beast.

Hercules cocks his head, "A brand?! I see no marks on you, boy, but if you've been burned, it seems you've got the best of it now!" he says.

While Hercules is a more than capable warrior, there isn't much technique in what he's doing. He's just pummeling these things, fists pounding like massive sledgehammers, shattering exoskeletons, sending crystal shards flying about. On occasion, he'll seize one and just tear it apart, ripping and yanking at hte joints with a kind of brutal directness, like a merchant marine disassembling giant crabs at the docks.

He's also singing aloud now, some sort of jolly chant, although the language isn't immediately decipherable, some ancient rhyme that's come into his head and seems to punctuate well with the occasional headbutt to a giant spider.

The spider is ripped from Akihiro, just in time for it to get a face full of claw. "Thanks." the teen wheezes out, his windpipe and torn flesh knitting back together before Johnny's eyes. "Guess it's time to start taking them seriously."

The four claws that have been used for most of the fight are retracted, the single claw that protrude from below his palm replacing them. Pushing back up onto his feet he gets back into the swing of things, stabbing inter-dimensional spiders to death like it's the least weird thing he's seen all week.

Johnny is starting to think this guy has the right attitude, but might be an alien. But he's focused on Akihiro for a moment, and when he heals, Johnny nods and totally gives a thumbs up, "Useful, that. Yeah. This isn't a game." With that he flies up into the air and then is a comet flinging down into a pair of the medium spiders, crashing into them as his body goes incandescent white. One he kills outright, it is reduced to dust, the other he rolls with, end over end over end. It's a struggle and a fight as he burns bright and hot but in the end, it too is ended. Rising, Johnny looks towards Hercules to see if he needs help— and he seems quite clearly not to need any. "A brand, man. A legacy. Fame. A legend. A story that everyone knows that names you."

Hercules grins at Johnny, "Ah, I see! That I understand! The men aspire to your place and sing your name! The women bathe you in oil and bare you their charms! The spoils of battle laid at your feet! Sadly, I think we'll find no treasure in these strange creatures. Perhaps the wizard who summoned them might have more to offer."

He grasps one of the larger creature and lifts it over his head, the things legs kicking and thrashing in the air until he brings it down across his knee with a savage CRACK.

"Maybe two-hundred years ago. The spoils don't go to the warriors anymore. We fight to survive." Akihiro adds to the conversation, slicing a spider's leg off before pulling it from between his ribs. His claws retract once more and don't make another appearance, rather he takes a page from Hercules' playbook and starts beating the small spiders to death with his bare hands. Poor guys never stood a chance.

Finally! Johny forms a bond of understanding with Hercules, "Exactly that!" The Human Torch moves around flying through the sky, sending balls of fire to incinerate the small spiders here or there. Between the three of them, they have seemed to have taken care of the issue by and large: there are only two deaths. Especially with the sharpness of Akihiro's claws and the sheer power of Hercules' fists, they are a match for this invasion. Johnny is content keeping the swarms under control: and when it is done, he settles down near to the other heros. His shirt burned into ash, but his jeans and jacket are still there— they're actually made of Reed's unstable molecules. He lifts a hand to offer a high-five to Hercules, "Naw, man." He says with a glance to Akihiro, "The spoils *totally* go to the warriors. That said, guy here…" He nods to Hercules, "…has a point, finding out who summoned these things might be where we find what matters."

Hercules returns the gesture, even if he doesn't entirely get its meaning. It seems an appropriate response, however. He looks at the wreckage left behind from the battle, brushing a few shards of crystal out of his beard.

"Such beasts are certainly doing the bidding of someone," he says. "Are there spider-gods here in the Americas? I am still learning the ways of this 'New World'," he says.

"he wanders over to check on Akihiro as well, slapping the small man on the back with a massive hand and nodding to Johnny, "This is the time when we need a good tavern and a cask of wine. Perhaps two, so there's some left for the two of you," he grins.

"Better be a tun if you want me drunk." Akihiro says, rocking forward slightly. "I'd ask the Asgardians if they know anything. Unless it's more magic." As he talks what few wounds he had left heal up, leaving him covered in blood with no apparent source. Unfortunately for him all of his cothes are made from stable molecules, and as a result have several new holes and tears.

Johnny nods, and he looks back to the bar Hercules came from, "Its certainly not random, so bidding seems likely. Reed might have an idea." He says that name like he expects everyone knows that name as much as they, clearly, know his. But Johnny grins easily and shrugs, "I don't know anything about spider gods, but lately we've had a lot of completely crazy." Still, he nods to Herc, "I raise you wine and bet you rum, man. Who drinks wine when they can have rum?" He flashes a serious look over to Akihiro, "Let's go drink off the crazy, man."

Hercules snorts, "Asgardians, bah! Tow-headed pansies!" he mutters. As for his clothes, well, there weren't that many of them to begin with - the God of Strength isn't a great believer in shirts, his hairy chest bare to the world as he heads off with these young warriors. "Anything can get you drunk if you drink enough of it, lad. But the stronger the better, indeed!"

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