1964-07-05 - Lazy Day At The Beach
Summary: Octo-People Attack!
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
Theme Song: None
starfire peter rogue jessica-drew 

It's a beautiful, amazing, warm day on the beaches of New York. The height of summer— and the tourist crowds largely go to Appalachia and the Hamptons, leaving the Fire Island beaches a little less insane than usual.

Jessica likes the Long Island beachway. It's clear and well kept, and a quirk of the tidal eddies means that debris and trash doesn't pile up and the waters are fresh. Also, the Fire Island beach is right across the bay which keeps the 'normals' away from the 'weirdos', who happen to be not only odd metahumans, but possessing the weirdly common genetic bonus gift of being perfect physical adonais of both genders.

Superheroing /does/ keep a body trim.

Wearing a daring sunbathing swimsuit, it's not likely Jessica's even going in the water today. Black and red cloth twines around itself in a bold contrasting pattern. Jessica didn't even bring a book— the Spider-Woman is wearing sunglasses and basking in the warmth. Behind her are rows of beachfront houses, apartments, condos and restaurants— an entire secondary industry dealing in everything from grilled burgers and dogs to paddle boards and boats. It's an idyllic sort of lazy afternoon in the sun.

Sometimes, a girl just needs a break. A break from the endless revolutions of threats spinning up, the anger burning in a friend's eyes with very real consequences for the rest of the world. A future not stretched out with any clarity, only the uneasy perturbations of some force yet to be seen keeping her up at night. In short, the bohemian of Greenwich Village needs a break. The few moments she can really spare set her down in Fire Island, where the vast circle of her white and black hat shade her fair face and keep people at arm's reach for their own benefit, rather than hers. The diaphanous dress she wears only reaches mid-thigh, swinging about over a pair of leggings entirely not cool for the beach. No daring polka-dot bikini here; maybe to her remorse and others. But still, she ventures away from one of the many stands hawking goods with a glass container of lemonade. Her thoughts spin over the surf and past the far horizon, the muddle of possibilities causing Scarlett to pick her way off the paved path into the sand without even thinking about it.

Boats, boards, and an Avenger strongly considering how deep she might be able to reach in that seaside before running out of air and having to surface. Dangerous tides indeed.


The figure of a somewhat scrawny young man comes walking along the sandy shore dressed in a red pair of swimming trunks, his chest bared to the sun revealing a pale complexion that almost glows with reflected light. Peter Parker had come along with a few other students of NYU, though unlike them he had brought along a textbook which is held open before him, his eyes skating left to right as he reads. He isn't really paying attention to where he is going, making Rogue and Jessica both likely targets for a collision.

Starfire doesn't usually overnight in the New York area, but with last nights fireworks it was hardly the best time to fly back to her island hideout. So instead she's getting her solar radiation breakfast here. Her own attire almost seems normal on the beach, short shorts and a figure hugging top, but the matching gloves and boots by her side and lack of other possessions don't quite add up to 'daring swimsuit choice'. Not that she seems to care, sprawling in the sand with a content smile on her face.

Jessica's half asleep and doesn't have spider-sense; with Petere focused on the book, the brunette in the lounge chair doesn't have half a chance of avoiding him.

It's really HIS fault— she doesn't have a spider-sense!

"Oof!" Jessica grunts, sitting up swiftly as Peter goes pell-mell over her legs. "Hey! Kid! Get off me!" she says tartly, her accent sharp and vaguely Eastern European. "Watch where yo—"

Her words are cut off by a scream near the water! Not a 'Ahaha, I got splashed on', but a 'Oh my god something is in the water' scream.

Then another. Then more, and suddenly dozens of beachgoers are fleeing the waters as strange, bulbous headed creatures start leaving the water. A dozen of them, all told— vaguely bipedal, but with massive simian arms, webbed and flippered feet, and heads like ocotopodes. A thick mass of writhing, rubbery tentacles hangs from where their mouths should be, and they carry bone-tipped spears in thick hands. Alien as their features are, nothing says 'malicious intent' like harpooning a few hapless victims with the ugly, primitive weapons.

"Ack! Move! Move move move!" Jessica yelps at Peter, trying to kick him off so she can get to her feet.

The sand is warm under her sandalled feet, the sun beating down, and the humidity bearable so close to the waves. Scarlett actually dares to smile; the inestimable welcome presence dispels some of the shadows cavorting around in her skull.

Until something completely makes her veer at the last moment, spinning away from Jessica's lounge chair and the bare-chested student caught up in his book, rather than his cups.

The redhead faces the waves, exactly where fortune intended her to be. Posing for a postcard this is not, though it could be with her holding the lemonade carefully in both hands, always restrained to avoid cracking the fragile glass. No crabs are scuttling up the beach, no. This is worse than the one time seagulls went crazy and chased everyone out of the water. Octopoidal creatures emerging from the sea absolutely draws a reaction from her, stooping to put the lemonade down in a hollow in the sand. "Who decided to read Lovecraft and got ideas?" A question for no one in particular, but probably sufficient for everyone to hear. "And now would be a fine time to retreat past the boardwalk, friends." Her rolling accent carries English dimensions to it, hinting somewhere south of the Home Counties, though that's not quite the truth. The hat ends up dropped on the sand, inches from Jessica and Peter's entanglement. She glances back at them, worry etched in those luminous green eyes that give off more of a gleam than they receive from the sun.

It may be hard to know when she starts trekking in the slithery things' directions. Sticks and stone may break human bones, but the Soul-Thief most definitely can hurt them.

Starfire sits up, stretches and yawns. "Excuse me," she calls out. "May I ask what is going on? Is this also part of the Independence day celebrations?" She rolls her shoulders and shakes the sand out from her hair. "Or is this some sort of play?"

Whatever Peter is reading must be good as he does not even notice the daringly dressed Jessica as his legs impact her chair and he falls on top and over her. His book hits the sand, followed by his face which goes nose first into the rough textured substrate. He coughs, sending a cloud of sand out from where his face is pushed into the dirt, then lifting his head quickly as Jessica begins to yell for him to move. "I'm sorry! I'm sorry!" he yelps, thinking her yelling to be simply because of him. His eyes track to where the Octopus-men are coming from the water and then widen substantially as he yells, "Holy shi-" The rest trailing away into nothingness as he scrambles to get to his feet, pushing Jessica down or behind him as he tries to regain his footing and sprint for the nearby parking lot and the station wagon awaiting.

Jessica's almost on her feet, then Peter shoves her. SHOVES her! And super-balance and super-stickiness is next to useless on loose, shifting sands, so Jessica lands on her rump.

"You little jerk!" she fumes at Peter— but she's on her feet in a flash, with a shocking athleticism. As soon as she is, she's charging towards the waters with a rooster tail of sand behind her. "Look out! I don't think they're friendly!" she calls. One of them hauls back a harpoon to lance a slow-moving older fellow— the octopode get a sizzling blast of green bioplasma to the face. Energy curls around Jessica's fists and she squares up with the dozen or so aquatic intruders, dodging a pair of harpoons flung her direction with surprising agility.

"Not friendly," Scarlett warns the other girl lounging on the beach for her daily dose of vitamin D. The jet of green goo erupting from a crude bone harpoon is enough for her to react, flicking her wrists to her sides. "Look left," she hisses in an aside for those behind her. Then the redhead is on the move, building up into a sprint in very short order. She zigzags rather than running in a straight line, the first rule of being marginally smart on the battlefield. At some point her feet lift off the ground, and she jags sharply to the right in a longer, faster, jagged spill. The benefit to flying so low to the ground, it kicks up a lot of particulate matter, flinging sand into the air in a spray when she delivers a good kick. Grit in the eyes is hardly fun, and it creates a screen hopefully so those who will retreat do.

Peter doesn't mind the name calling. For all of the reaction he gives he might not have even heard it. He continues that flat out sprint until he reaches the car he rode in, but more importantly the backpack left inside. He pulls the door open, hunkering down low in the car and changing quickly into a set of blue sweatpants and hoodie, pulling a red tanktop on overtop of that, and finally his web shooters and a ski mask. He explodes from the station wagon, using a web shot at a nearby streetlamp to fling himself into the air. He gets an almighty swing going before releasing, launching himself in a high arc through the air that sends him across the beach to land with both feet on the head of one of the octupus-men. Even as he squishes one to the ground, he holds his right arm to the side and launches a web out to grab the ankle of the next nearest and heaves, tugging the beastie to the ground.

"And we should fight them but refrain from killing?" Starfire asks, not so much standing up as floating to her feet with her hands wreathed in glowing green energy. "Does anyone know what these creatures are?" Almost as soon as she's finished talking there is a BOOM as she takes to the air at mach two, she loops around in the air and then comes hurtling back towards the ground hurling a flurry of star bolts across the beach. Some aiming at the monsters, while others hit the stand near those throwing harpoons sending clouds of sand up into the air to give everyone a little cover from further pointy projectiles.

The sonic boom knocks everyone to the ground— octopodes, civilians, and anyone nearby. Glass blows out of a handful of windows within a hundred yards of the beachfront and Jessica, among others, staggers around partially deafened and clasping her hands over her ears.

The octopodes seem much less bothered; possibly because they're accustomed to the vast sound pressures of the ocean blasting against their eardrums.

Jessica recovers quickly, and flings more green bioplasma from her hands. She snatches a harpoon from the air and with a hopskip, flings it /back/ at an Octopode, hitting it and provoking a weird, high squeal from the beast as it hits the ground, bleeding a dark ocre-colored ichor on the ground.

"I don't think this is a 'pull your punches' fight!"

So much for that beloved lemonade she just bought, now soaking into the sand. Her hat goes flying. Scarlett proves infinitely too busy to concern herself with those fates, however, doing her best to spin on a tumbling axis as the air pressure around her crackles and thunders. On the other hand, she can generate that sort of shockwave and the effects on her demonstrably prove less than the average person. Offensive to all good sense that the octopodes enjoy any such similar protections, thanks to the multitude of atmospheres dropped on them at any given time.

"Try to keep them alive, at least one. It may not be an invasion." Hope springs eternal, or that's potentially very easy for a girl in the process of delivering a viciously hard, high scissor kick that would make a taekwondo champion proud. Without waiting to land, by floating, she drops into a crouching wheel spin to avoid a harpoon jabbed at her chest.

At that Sonic Boom, Peter is similarly tossed from his feet, body arcing to bring his hands to the sand and flip backward in a sort of back handspring that brings the sweat-suit clad hero into a low crouch. "What was that?" he wonders aloud, yelping and diving into a sidelong roll as three spears dart forward to stab into the sand where he was just crouched. "Lady, I'm worried about keeping me alive!" Pete yells out as he leaps into the air, aiming a kick at one squishy head while sending a web at the arm of another, yanking the harpoon from it's grasp before it can be thrown.

"Oh, Then I will stop holding back!" Starfire yells from above, making another loop-de-loop and then coming in for another pass. This time so close to the sand she could reach out and touch it. The constant stream of starbolts is also joined by flashes of green energy from her eyes that blacken and burn tentacles. One of the unlucky creatures wanders into her flight path and, instead of avoiding it, she simply slams glowing fist first into the creatures chest. Bursting a moment later out from the creatures back in a shower of foul ichor.

"Sure, that's probably smart!" Jessica agrees. She marvels a little at Spider-Man's phenomenal agility— something instinctual twinges at the back of her mind. Recognition, however unconscious.

Starfire of course is just a glowing brand of power and light, cutting them to ash and char, and Scarlett— Scarlett's dancing more than fighting.

Jessica fights at a distance, and she and Starfire burn the house down while Scarlett and Peter stay up close and personal, dodging and disabling the octos until none remain stand. A few give up the ghost and start retreating, burbling and gabbling in an incomprehensible tongue until they're vanishing into the seafoam, leaving only bodies behind.

Wiggling a finger in her ear, Jessica starts clucking her tongue and making 'mawp' noises. "I'M STILL A LITTLE DEAF," she says, her voice over-loud following the battle-lull. "HOW'RE YOU GUYS HOLDING UP?"

"Out!" Scarlett utters the warning in a rolling cry, mirroring Spider-Man's movements when the pressure of bone harpoons is off a little. She springs to block a weapon that goes diving for him when the holder thinks it has a chance. Another of those double kicks lashes out with the full force of her strength, more than sufficient to stagger the average concrete column for a parking garage. Octopodes are hopefully sent flying back where the mustard loving alien and Spider-Woman are better poised to do something about them.

Their retreat isn't something she chases on yet, her clothes sandy and arms raised to a guarded position. Regret, of all things, is painted over her face. As though the whole ordeal is rather like discovering something particularly gross at the bottom of the fridge, and it's her fault the cucumber rotted in the crisper.

Spider-Man leans back as Rogue leaps in to help him, his feet seeming to grip the sand as he leans back in a Matrix-like maneuver before pulling him back to an upright position to return to the fight. He shoots a web at one and jerks it to it's back before shooting a few more to make sure that one can't retreat with the rest before he beats a retreat so that Jessica and Starfire can finish up. He looks toward Rogue and offers a muffled compliment through his mask, "Nice moves, lady."

With most of the creatures on the retreat or wrapped up in webbing Starfire twirls in the air, bits of sea monster flinging off her and splattering the sand below, before making a more measured dive into the sea. The water around her bubbles and boils, then she appears back above the waves. Considerably cleaner than she was before. "Does this happen often in the New York?" she wonders aloud as she lands over near her things. "For I have never heard of such creatures attacking back where I am from… in Europe."

With the sea foaming and the woman bubbling herself clean, Scarlett has a moment or two to address Spider-Man. "Thank you. You handled yourself well, too." No spider webs all over her, for one, and no one else seems to be dead or lying unconscious on the beach. Somewhere on the boardwalk, surely at least one bather has called the police or the fire brigade. Whatever options they have, surely. She goes to reclaim her hat from where it blew away in the sonic boom. "I'm Scarlett, by the by. Good to see someone handling these things well. I haven't seen their kind before, so I prefer to think this is a one-off."

Jessica gives Peter a narrow-eyed look as the little quarter pulls together. Speculative and narrow-eyed with suspicion. Webs were weird enough, then there's the preternatural agility and the sticking to stuff… and the fact that her own strange spider-sense is tickling the back of her brain. "I think you and I should talk, kid," she tells Peter, waggling an index finger at him with a no-nonsense look.

She turns to Scarlett and Kori, and flashes a smile at the other women. "You two— glad you were here," she says, in that Transian accent. "Scarlett, I'm Jessica. Nice to meet you," she says, dipping her head at the bohemian.

Starfire gets a dubious look. "…European, right," she says, sounding highly skeptical. There's the sounds of sirens— no doubt, NYPD on their way to deal with the strange threat.

She mumbles a Belgian curse under her breath. "WEll, that's my cue," she tells them, sauntering off. "I guess my day at the beach is ruined," she grumbles, before fetching her bag and flipflips and walking sedately away from the sands to get away before being 'questioned'.

Floating above the sand Starfire drifts back over to her boots and gloves, left further up the beach and wrapped in a white sun dress. "It has been a pleasure fighting with you all," she says cheerfully. "I am sure the authorities will be able to handle the situation from here." She glances at all the scorched sand and broken shop windows. "And in future I shall have to be more careful with my flying around more… delicate buildings." And with a friendly wave she takes to the sky.

Jessica Drew goes home.

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