1964-06-14 - Spiders and Sorcerers
Summary: In which magic is strained against the arachnaphobic poe
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
Theme Song: None
lindon lamont billy strange pepper 

There's pizza and then there's pizza: and Billy is in the mood for a Brooklyn style pie. He's invited Stephen over for some old fashion warding, and promised pizza as bribe. Then life got in the way and he didn't have said pizza ready yet, so they decide to head out to pick it up together. Why not? Its a thing men bond over, it is. Teleporting off to get pizza.

Mario's is strangely quiet, it's windows looking.. odd. There's some silver-gray film over them for some reason: perhaps they're redecorating?

And then all hell breaks lose: a man slams through that silver-gray and the window beyond it, glass going flying as he collapses on the ground… with a crystal spider the size of a large dog on his back. It looks like milky quartz with pulsing black veins within, and it has twelve legs instead of the traditional eight. And already its spinning silvery webbing on the struggling man. Inside the pizza parlor there's many more— two more large ones, about twice as many that are he size of a small dog, and a swarm of small cat-sized spiders. Upon the far wall is another silvery spider web — but this one shimmers. Those with the Sight can see it as a tear in the dimensional fabric… and they can see a cocooned woman being dragged into the inter-dimensional web and vanish.

And then there're the flat *cracks* of suppressed pistol fire. Someone out there came armed for bear…..or lots of spiders. The shooter's apparently encountered these things before, because he knows precisely where to strike, aiming for that one weakness in the big spider's abdomen.

Despite the sound, he's not visible….well, not to the ordinary folk. The magicians might have a chance to spot him, a figure in a dark cloak or cape and black hat. Apparently the Shadow's decided to deal with this particular infestation of arachnids.

Pizza. Pepper just wanted a slice of pizza. The really good pizza from Mario's, that half falls apart in your hands. She'd already worked most of the day and put in over 40 hours this week and it wasn't even THURSDAY! She deserved pizza. Except, well, pizza has been overrun by something truly awful. "…What in the… hell…" Pepper breathes out, making the stupid mistake of trying to get closet to figure out what is wrong with the pizza place she's been craving, instead of just running. That was a poor choice. A spider is going for her next, easy prey it seems on some spike heels. Her eyes go wide and she swings her purse around, violently battering at the spider's leg/tentacle thing. "THESE. ARE. IMPORTED. DON'T TOUCH." Yes, she will get violent in defense of her shoes.

Billy gets to eat all the pizza too! What a perk. It's been literal years since Strange could stomach the food. Still, it's no skin off the man's back to lay down some solid wards that would make all but the most staunch supernatural baddies flinch and wail and the weird bonding they're doing over retrieving said savory pies is a bonus. He's still not sure about this whole 'Dad' business, but it's growing on him…like a fungus.

Arriving outside the parlor proves to set him immediately on edge. To his Sorcerous senses, the tear is an anomaly that stings like lemon juice on a papercut — wrongness, so very wrong!!!

"I was not expecting this," he grumbles, even as the bullets begin to fly. Eyes wreathed in the glow of the Sight land on Lamont, slippery as the man is, and a quick, feral grin twists Strange's lips. "Perfect." Positive acclimation or not? Regardless, he's quick to draw up the full-circle tieshans in staticky golden lines and sigils. If any spider's coming after him, it'll be a quick death with slice, dice, and Eastern martial arts. "Billy, be watchful." That's all the young man gets.

Billy stares for a long moment at the spider, alarmed, some atavistic fear chilling his spine. Once it splits in two and dissolves into sand from Lamont's shot, Billy gets over that fear and reaches out: the man is lifted in the air and spun about, the webbing being spun and tore off of him before he's set down on the opposite side of the street, there to flee like a wise man would. He looks to Strange, wide-eyed, alarmed, outraged, "Those aren't from here, are they? They look wrong: they don't belong to our reality. The math on them uses a different cosmological constant." Billy sees magic… weird.

The shot has an effect besides just killing the spider.

It also draws the swarm. Dozens upon dozens of small spiders surge out of the window, some climbing up the building, some chasing after people. One large and two medium spiders come as well, seeming to direct matters.

And… immediately, the small spiders begin leaping — and they can jump far. They aren't leaping at anyone, but across the building. Trailing along them are long, thin strands of webbing. It takes moments before there's dozens upon dozens of strands randomly spun around the area. They aren't sticky: but if they continue as this is done, it will be hard to maneuver much without disturbing the webs.

Flicking a hand, Billy sends a lightning bolt out to strike one of the smaller spiders as it streaks to him— its vaporized.

Impossible as it is, the spider seems actually dazed by Pepper's purse-attack. Its strangely effective: it doesn't do serious harm to it, but it is confusing the poor alien.

Those little bastards. How dare they. Lamont….he's not really visibly Lamont, somehow, even for those who can see him. There's a layer of illusion there that augments the disguise….though a little work by either of the sorcerer's can pierce it. Not that it matters much - he's got that distinctive aura, like smoke or some sort of dark mist, threaded through with an angry scarlet. A moment and he's got a knife in one hand, a pistol in the other - slashing at the webbing as he slips past it, for the moment. IT won't be long at all though before the webbing's too dense for him. Still going after bigger spiders, rather than try to deal with the little ones. Take out the officers, before you worry about the enlisted.

It's her purse or her precious shoes. Not that she couldn't just replace either, but she LIKED these shoes. So, the purse is going to have to sacrfice itself in the line of spider-killing, or at least stunning, duty. Pepper's pale eyes go a little too wide as she realizes just how surrounded the area is becoming. She wasn't a super hero, wouldn't be fighting the big ones, but she could at least get herself out of there and not become a liability. Or so, that was the plan.

Pepper shifts her hold on her purse, so she's grasping the handles exactly at the top with both of her hands, treating the purse like a kettleball. It practically weighs as much as one, with everything she keeps in there! It also means she can get her shoulders into it as she swings around, swatting spiders out of mid-air as they try to weave across the area. "This CANNOT be normal." She breathes out raggedly, trying to keep her head about her as she keeps playing spider racquet ball. She's not doing much more than not getting herself caught and buying Lamont a few extra seconds, but she's doing something. Her pale eyes momentarily flicker in the direction of a vague friend, "Stephen?! What… what in hell ARE these!?" She yells across the chaos to her old dance partner.

"No, they aren't from this reality," the Sorcerer agrees, even as one of the myriad little spiders flies at him, trailing its web. It gets summarily swatted away with the flat of one of the tieshan, a shuttle-cock disintegrating into silvery-gold tinder-flint sparks as the magic consumes it. "The lightning is effective, but don't wear yourself out. They may be smart enough to measure fatigue." What a harrowing warning.

Scowling up a storm, Strange darts into the fray in a flurry of Mystical weaponry and booted kicks. The brilliant edges of the mandalas serve to sever what thin lines of webbing are in his way, though one small spider slips past his guard to crawl up to his knee.

"Get OFF!!!" He spits, executing a whip-kick simply to dislodge the thing. SWIFF, off it flies to land awkwardly on its back some distance away after twanging off one of the many lines strung out everywhere. Upon his landing, it becomes apparent that the handkerchief in his pocket is no simple crimson square. Nope — unfolding an inordinate amount of times, it reveals itself as the Cloak. Flick-snap-crack: the hems deal no mercy to the critters. Sand piles begin to dot the space around the two of them. Hearing a familiar voice, Strange wheels in place to see — Pepper?!

"Pepper?! Seven hells," and he makes his way over, his aura crackling about him as much as the Cloak upon his shoulders does upon impact with any jumpers attempting to land on him. "A nuisance, Miss Potts." Figures that the man would be somewhat vague in the middle of an other-dimensional spider infestation. "Stay close, the larger ones have noticed us now." Indeed, the largest at the size of a Clydesdale clicks mandibles and wiggles tentacle-limbs before beginning to work towards them, all of the beady eyes upon the Sorcerer and the red-head.

|ROLL| Lamont +rolls 1d100 for: 14

Billy isn't sure what the spiders are doing with this leaping-webbing business, but he figures: whatever they want to do, he doesn't want them to do. "It can do it a lot, but I'll be careful." he acknowledges to Stephen, even as he lifts his hands. He floats up into the air and spreads his hands out, and suddenly waves of telekinetic force slashes out randomly in various directions, severing strands of web with each go, causing them to fall. Each time they do spiders rush towards an area, only to mill around in confusion as they do not find an enemy there. It drives the small spiders into a frenzy: and rather occupies the swarm deeply. They don't appear to be able to sense the origin of telekinesis, and so rush towards each cut strand seeking the invisible foe.

Plus, it keeps them off of Lamont, who Billy only vaguely sees.

There's a surprisingly musical chiming sound as the .45 slug caroms off the spider's crystal chitin….because Lamont misses badly. He hisses in frustration. The Shadow does not lose fights with predatory alien windchimes. With Billy distracting the swarm for a moment, he takes a rare moment to be still, and squares up his stance, before aiming again.

|ROLL| Lamont +rolls 1d100 for: 98

In all the chaos, Pepper finally realizes that Dr. Strange is actually there with someone. She gives Billy a brief wave and awkward, I can't believe we're caught in the middle of crazy spiders and meeting like this, smile. "Hey… I'm Pepper. And this is insane." She calls over the chaos around them. She doesn't have near the ability of either of them, only a purse and redheaded stubbornness to keep her going, but sometimes that is enough. As Strange instructs her to stay close, she does tuck a bit more near against him, "…Oh, hell.." She breathes out as those terrifyingly large, beady eyes turn in their direction. She can't get it, she has to trust one of the men will, but she can keep playing tennis with the small ones. She swings her arms up and over again, swatting one heavily out of the air with her purse and then getting a second one on the upswing. "This is disgusting." She whimpers.

|ROLL| Strange +rolls 1d100 for: 83

With the Cloak more than happy to run interference along with Miss Potts (together, they make quite the duo, slapping scurrying bodies left and right to their various impactful demises), Strange can glare back at the largest damn spider he's ever seen — no, wait, one of Sham-Horoth's bigg'ns absolutely tried to ambush him in the Sanctum, but this one's an easy close-second — and ready the double threat of a combined spell. The Art of Words comes in handy sometimes, especially now when he needs to be precise and not accidentally hit bystanders.

Assuming a grounded stance, he draws the willpower in order to cast it. "TI KOTU!!!" Sharp syllables fracture through the air as he breaks wrists and palms face outwards. Twin gouts of fire, bright as starlight and the silvery-blue of hyperheated gas, lash out to cyclone about the spider approaching with intense predatory focus. The shriek is the shattering of multiple stained-glass windows, fain to vibrate in one's teeth, and the spider rears up as the flames eat at it viciously.

He heard the ringing gunshot earlier, crystalline richochet and all.


Billy is a lot of things: cutest guy around, best teleporter ever, smart as a whip (… someone has to explain to him how a whip is smart), but what he is not, is a big gun. Against the larger spiders he is compleely useless. He might be able to take on the medium ones, but there's a LOT of little spiders around hunting for Lamont. He doesn't really now they're hunting for Lamont, he just knows this particular tactic seems to be effective at keeping the swarm under control. And so, Billy continues. Spinning slowly in the air, Wiccan slashes webbing here and there, and he watches the swarm leap to pounce, their fury and frustration obvious even though they are in no way anthropomorphic.

Unfortunately, the spiders apparently know trigonometry. It doesn't happen fast, but soon they figure out the source of these disruptions by sheer cleverness… and dozens of little spiders leap towards him.

He manly eeps, and tenses just in time to put up a telekinetic bubble around himself as suddenly all the little spiders try to push through that shield. Fortunately, they don't seem strong enough.

That large spider that Billy can't see stalks around the edge and approaches him, that might be a different story entirely.

Well, Lamont hasn't moved beyond gunfire as the solution to nearly all problems. But with Strange offering an assisst, and that one truly vulnerable spot in the creature's abdomen exposed….this round strikes true. There's a melodic tinkling, like someone flinging down a Waterford goblet….and that's the end of that spider. A glance at Strange, and then his gaze focusses on Billy in his magical hamster ball of defense. He starts to pick off the swarm. Look this way, I killed your parent.

The only thing that could make this evening worse would be if she was late for the after dinner meeting she had scheduled. After dinner. Which she didn't pick up, because spiders, and now the clock was running. "Shit… I'm supposed to be meeting Harold Conners in… 3 minutes. I HAVE to get out of here. You've got this, right? You've got this. We need to catch up sometime. Tea. Soon! Maybe next Tuesday? Bring your friend!" Pepper chatters on, as she's swatting at two more of the small spiders that is coming their way. Being CFO of a huge company has done tons for her confidence, it seems, if not much for her stress levels.

Then, determined NOT to lose this deal, "I'm making a run for it…" She half growls. Then, purse in hand, Pepper Potts proceeds to football linebacker her way through a mass of spiders, swinging purse as she goes, going as far to PUNT one across the street that was going for her ankle. "I told you, I have a MEETING!" She hisses at two mid size ones swinging at her. She spins, swatting bag into one which slams it into the other, then she's still going. She actually does make it to the limo that hs been idling two streets over and soon away she goes.

|ROLL| Strange +rolls 1d100 for: 58

With the same celestial conflagration contained about his palms, the Sorcerer nods sharply and then susses out the next point of impact. The tear. It has to be this: the wound to reality needs to be staunched, else it keep bleeding spiders in various sizes. No more Volkswagon arachnids, please.

Glancing over his shoulder, he sees Pepper's retreat and smiles thinly. Good, another innocent out of harm's way. He's minded to keep a wary distance from her purse in the future. Then his attention shifts to Billy's bubble, effective as it is against the smaller of the size spread.

GODS BELOW. Another huge spider threatens his son.

«Cranston, keep shooting!» Hopefully his projected shout makes it to Lamont's mind for how it's half-strangled in protective rage. And the boys think their mother is scary.

The blowback of sizzling super-hot air in a breaking sphere around Strange is enough to send spiders flying back in all directions and melt the other-dimensional sand piles to glassy splatters upon the turf around the pizza parlor. He has enough of a leash on his temper to send the lashes of fire in parallel lines outside of the protective bubble. If it doesn't take the majority of the creature's legs off in the first slash of Mystical flame, certainly the creature won't last long with the appetite of the magic.

In his bubble of Spiders, Billy contemplates arachnaphobia. He decides it is both rational and sane and that he seriously considers adopting it as a trait on his D&D character sheet, except of course D&D hasn't been invented yet, but damnit, he remembers it. The strength of his shield can easily hold the little spiders at bay, and fortunately Dad handled the big one, and so Billy starts methodically causing his shield to modulate and crush a spider to dust. Then another. Then another. It'll take some time, but while Billy isn't a big gun, he completely outclasses the little guys. "Why is my life this weird?" he asks out loud, "I mean its really, really weird." Pop. Pop. Pop. Spiders are reduced to dust. "But I did not think I'd ever be floating in a spider bubble. I am not at all a fan." Pop. Pop. "And all I wanted was pizza." Pop.

|ROLL| Lamont +rolls 2d100 for: 66

|ROLL| Lamont +rolls 1d100 for: 41

He's babbling. Why is he babbling? There's an incredulous curiosity flickering at the edge of his concentration. But what throws his aim off is the fear that that bubble won't hold up to gunfire. No point in taking out little spiders only to shoot Billy himself. Which is why Lamont does not see the team of smaller ones who've peeled off to deal with him, directed by one of the remaining mid-sized. But they're on him of a sudden, and he's diverted….especially as the largest of the set slashes at him with its claws. The wound isn't deep, but it is bleeding freely. Now he's down to one hand again, as the other tries to staunch it.

If Billy can monologue to himself, he's probably just fine. He got that trait from his father…maybe? Or maybe his grandfather on his mother's side. Regardless, he can clearly handle the smaller spiders, given the amount of crystalline silt falling down about him like dandruff.

Bolstered on by the lingering foul temper in defensive origins, his attention flicks to Lamont. Hmm, that's blood — bad juju. A twist of the tongue, "TI CAVUKKAI!" brings the earlier starfire-spell into fine-honed control. An amalgamation of the golden surujin and crafted spell, it's not too far off from a weapon wielded by some harbinger of death and despair…think Balrog, Tolkien fans.

Kah-CRACK. Indiana Jones, eat your hat. Strange clears the area around him of a few of the medium-sized creepy crawlies before projecting towards Lamont, «Can you hold your own? I need to close the tear in reality!»

|ROLL| Billy +rolls 1d100 for: 63

Billy, surrounded as he is by a telekinetic bubble, and that bubble is crawling with dozens of crystal spiders that don't seem willing to give up on the idea of digging through his barrier. He can hold the shield, but the strain of doing so against so many begins to wear on the young mage. He sweats, he pants, he strains: and so he reaches deep within. Gritting his teeth he concentrates, grunting, "The sun ascendant." It's a hard thing: to split his thought, his mind, his concentration. To maintain the shield and to cast his spell. "The. Sun. Ascendant." He tries to concentrate. He doesn't have the strength to keep popping the spiders one at a time: there's just too many. The weight wears on him. "THE SUN ASCENDANT."

And then just at the edge of his shield flame, hot and pure and bright as the noon bursts into life and rages. A small sun exists for a few seconds, enough to burn away all the small spiders, and then Billy collapses to the ground, covered in sweat… and on fire.

"Holy shitmonkey!" he exclaims, suddenly rolling around as his arms are on fire and that is bit and so. Stop. Drop and Roll. He totally paid attention in school. Its an effective tactic, for fortunately only the clothes on his extended arms caught flame.

Lindon gets restless sometimes, and his normal evening of reading a book doesn't sit well with him. Lamont isn't home, and Lindon was getting stir crazy, so he had the driver drive him around for a bit, then he decided to walk. He came down to where the spiders are out of curiosity, and consider it sated. There they are. He pauses, hands shoved in his pocket, and he opens his mouth, then snaps it shut.

A wordless affirmative from the Shadow. Despite the wound in his side, he's fighting carefully - there's the knife again, to cut the webbing that impedes him. He's basically kiting them - trying to keep their attention on him as Strange does his best to close the webbed tear in reality.

And then there's Lindon. Lamont's in full drag, as it were - dark cloak, hat, the scarlet scarf, pistol in one hand, knife in the other. Perhaps not immediately recognizable, at first glance. Despite a wound in his side, he's working on killing the little spiders, with a kind of methodical patience. Kiting, them, basically.

Right, the Shadow can hold his own. Very good. Strange pauses in place a second longer, snaps the starfire-surujin once to send the spiders enroaching about him scuttling in fear so he can take said second to double-check…yes, okay, very good indeed.

And Billy? …right, he'll be fine. Wanda would call him 'reasonably safe'.

Through the severed strands of spiderwebs runs the Sorcerer Supreme, ducking and weaving as he goes. The Mystical spell-weapon continues to clear the way of webbing and little spiderlings alike. Into the confines of the pizza parlor he goes through a shattered window. It's shadowy, close in here with the thickness of the thick floss of threads, and he crouches even as the spell's metrics are tweaked for a moment's specific use.

The twinkling steps of hundreds of tiny arachnid feet signal the rush and from the outside, it probably looks like someone detonated a handful of safety flares. With a flash not too different earlier, the starfire-surujin's energy is utilized to scour the area about him specifically of spiders and their influence.

Switch gears! On to the closing of the tear, but not before he pulls the limp body of a swaddled customer from the opening. Awkard when the person's head bounces off the ground, but hopefully the floor was somewhat padded for the webbing. "Sorry," hisses Strange, grimacing. Now — now, he can sew it shut. The Eye at his throat winks bright citrine and the spell about his hands is equally vibrant. He murmurs, sinking into a mild trance as the Words leave his mouth. Can the Cloak track all of the creatures threatening at a distance?

…what of the one above on the ceiling, set to drop down with the weight of three men and mandibles like scimitars?!

Stop, drop, and roll. Surrounded by sand, most of the smaller spiders are taken care of, even if Billy is left.. tired, as a result of it. "Ouch." he complains, "Teddy's gonna be pissed." Because he peels his shirt back and looks at the serious burns on his arms, but he shakes his head. Healing later. He tilts his head this way and that, looking: and he sees Stephen heading in to close the gate. Rising up without thinking, Billy moves forward to not offer assistance, but to have his back— and he moves more naturally flying then not. Only… he sees SPIDER. A hand flings out, and above Strange forms a telekinetic wall, "Watch out, Dad! Up above!" he calls out even if he holds said shield… which is good, because his shield is strong enough only to slow down the larger spiders, not stop them.

Lindon ducks behind a car and keeps out of the way, because Lindon has an accurate assessment of his combat skills. He blinks a few times. 'Dad?' he mouths. He steals a look at father and son. And the Shadow? He's familiar. His mind races, probabilities and small remembered bits of details here and there filling in details his conscious mind is having trouble putting together. He looks up, winces. He even strains that overclocked mind to will the spider dead. Sadly, he's not the Sorcerer Supreme, or any kind of sorcerer really.

|ROLL| Lamont +rolls 1d100 for: 77

Strange will be able to feel it down the link, an instance of the way extreme emotion boosts magic, intended or not - there's a bolt of terror from Lamont, like a blade of ice. A fraction of a second before he cuts it off, realizing what he's done. Then he's fighting like a madman, for he's spotted Lindon in earnest. It's a spectacle few've seen, even back in the days when he was the scourge of New York's underworld: the Shadow fighting not cool and collected and several steps ahead of the game, but on the edge of panic. IT doesn't stop him for aiming for the Big Daddy that's after Strange, though.

Entirely involved in his casting, it does take the actions of the others to prevent the Sorcerer Supreme from taking dualed fangs to the torso. The large spider drops even as Strange frowns and looks over his shoulder. Dad? Who's yelling —

THUD! The impact of the creature above him upon Billy's shield makes him flinch and drop to a crouch even as Lamont's attack proves to send the creature into hysterical thrashing.

"FINISH IT, I NEED TO CLOSE THE TEAR!!!" His stentorian voice rings out over the muted rings of the giant creature's scrabbling to get at him and simultaneously avoid being subject to more offensive attempts to end it. Strange picks up the thread of the spell cast and continues where he kneels, eyes blanking to full neon-green as the sutures of his work become visible. Hopefully the others can keep the creature at bay for this last pass of the metaphysical needle!

Billy's telekinesis is only so strong: his control over lightning is only so strong. Heck, he knows he can throw lightning and more often then not that won't kill someone. Yet there's a giant spider he's barely able to contain from eating his dad. He has to do something. He doesn't really recognize Lamont has aimed against these things well: he was focused on containing the swarm. What can he do? What will he tell his mom— Wanda— if he doesn't stop that spider. And so Billy raises his other hand: an d he concentrates. "There is no spider." he breathes into reality, a ripple extending from him as he concentrates on something he has never done before: unmaking. Unbeing. "There is no spider." he repeats to the wall of the pizzaria that he clings to, to hold himself up. He's tired and he's done a lot, and yet, he demands of Being Itself one thing: "Thereisnospider!" This is a pained cry, and… the giant spider just… folds into itself and vanishes into nothingness.

And Billy collapses. The migraine, the strain, all of it, it's more then he can deal with. Its all he can do to lay there as the reverberations of the spell shake him into a trembling mass of trembles. The spider is undone, unmade, perhaps never was. Who can say? But Billy is only barley conscious for the effort of that unmaking.

Lindon's eyes widen when the youth who called Strange 'Dad' wills the spider out of existence. Reality manipulation. He's never seen it actually happen before, and he only half-believed it in the first place. He comes out from behind the car. "Is he all right?" His approach is tentative, though. Let 'Dad' get in there if he's survives the assault. A glance to Lamont. Sorry, the Shadow. And Lindon looks sheepish, glancing away awkwardly.

That has Lamont's jaw dropping - not that one can see it, behind the crimson silk of his scarf. That's a level of magic that borders on pretty much unpossible. He's working on finishing the last of the little spiders, firing and reloading, firing and reloading with the smooth deftness of a stage conjuror pulling a skein of silk hankies from his sleeve. He's hustling to stand over Billy, fend off the last of the little spiders like a dog guarding the body of its master. His gaze keeps darting to Lindon, though…and then to Strange. Only when the last of them is shattered into nothingness does he answer. His voice is low, rough, almost metallic - nothing like his usual upper-class drawl. "I think it's only backlash, though with a spell of that magnitude…." One doesn't have to see his face to know how dubious he is.

"…so mote it be!"

The knot is tied and the freakish tear in the veil between dimensions shuttered off with a vengeance. So within the narrow range of attention needed to complete his task was Strange that he realizes only as he rises to his feet what has occurred. No more telekinetic shield, no more gigantic spider above him, the few remaining scattering to the far corners of the parlor (panicked now that their true escape is gone), and a twinge of concern again from Lamont.

Zip-zip-poof. Leven-bolts shatter the few cat-sized crawlies and the pizza place is suddenly so very silent. Deeply panting, the Sorcerer sniffs, wipes at one temple, and turns when he hears familiar voices. Cranston, yes — Lindon?!

BILLY! His heart tears free in his chest to batter against his ribs at the sight of the prone body.

With long strides, the Sorcerer is beside the young man and kneeling once again. The pallor strikes him as well as he checks for a pulse…oh thank the gods. Simple over-exertion. Dropping his chest to his chest, he lets out a rough sigh before what could be construed as a laugh.

"Just like your mother," he murmurs, carefully gathering up what he can of Billy in order to roll him to his back. Better able to breathe this way. Strange then looks up to the others with weariness creeping in with crow's feet at the corners of his eyes. "Gentlemen. I expect you to have tact in light of what you've learned." After all, Billy did shout 'Dad' at him.

Billy is a power in his own right. But he has limits. And those limits got pushed to the edge, chuckled at and pushed farther. To this, there are consequences. Fortunately, yes, he's breathing. He has a minor fever. He's easily gathered and moved, but after that spell of unmaking? He's completely out of it. But not entirely unconscious: just insensible. A hand reaches out to grab Strange's arm when he's near. Oh, hey Dad. Nothing to it. I'm fine. In a super vague portion of his mind he thinks something like this. But his consciousness can only manage, "…gone?"

Lindon manages to himself destroy one of the little spiders with a precise stomp to a critically weak point, a ground heel, then a kick to separate the pieces. Once the deed is done, he looks down at the pieces, his complexion losing a few shades. Looking up at Strange, wide-eyed, he holds out his hands as if to say hey, he didn't hear nuthin', man. He studies Billy with intense curiosity, though, maybe more than is, strictly speaking, considered polite. In his defense, the kid just willed something out of existence. He gravitates toward the Shadow. "Did you see what I saw?"

The black-cloaked figure notes, in the driest possible tone, "My nom de guerre is the Shadow, Strange." There's that sangfroid in his voice, his manner. As if assuming that persona rendered him different internally, as well as externally. Strange having a wizard bastard is….neither his judgement nor his concern, for all there's a whisper of grief for his own lost child.

He's still bleeding from that slash in his side, the black rendered darker and sticky by it….and what little skin is visible is pale. He's got another piece of cloth handy, and that he presses to the wound. Only then does he look at Lindon. If there's any softening, it's in the lines around his eyes….and in his voice. "I did," he agrees, more gently. "Amazing, wasn't it?"

Even as the double-L's are conversing quietly, the Gate upon the Loft is opening up. Flickersnick, there it is, oculus near to a chaise couch where Billy can recline while his parents fuss over him. Well…fuss in their own way. Restorative tea and probably a lecture.

Scarred fingers curl overtop the hand on his arm and squeeze after a hesitant second.

"Yes, Billy, gone." The Sorcerer, having heard the faint question, takes Billy's pulse at his neck once again to assuage his fears and then nods to himself. "The Shadow. Hmm. I…wondered…" He needs to pause for shifting the weight of the mostly-unconscious young man into his arms. Blowing a sigh as he stands up again, Strange gives Lamont a lingering consideration. "Yes…I wondered. Get that looked at," he nods to the man's side, where the tacky blood is soaking into cloth. "Contact me if it festers or turns out to be a bite and not a laceration. Lindon, if he goes down with any signs of poison in his system, a bezoar. Hold it against the wound until I can reach you both." Another gentle heft settles Billy more comfortably in the sling of his father's arms. "Now, if you'll excuse me, gentlemen." A nod to each, a tight smile, and the crimson Cloak furling behind him is the last thing to be seen as the Gate closes once he's walked briskly through it.

And Billy never got his pizza! Damn spiders.

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