1964-09-23 - Demon Hunt: Fiendish Flaming Flamingos Flock in a Menagerie
Summary: A group of teens are hastily assembled to chase away some demon flamingos - just another day at the Bronx Zoo.
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
Theme Song: None
illyana douglas danielle kamala 

Welcome to the Bronx Zoo. It's been open since 1899 and has over two thousand animals at this point in time. The Zoo is preparing for the opening of their Birdhouse exhibit. The doors are scheduled to open tomorrow, with beautiful creatures from tropical rainforests and Florida swamps and many other locations around the world.

Or, anyway, that's the plan. At the moment there's some question whether the zoo itself will open tomorrow — or ever again. There are screams this evening from the animal enthusiasts, young and old, who are rushing for the exits being chased by…


Illyana Rasputina is cursing herself just now. They were right in her back yard, and she didn't have a clue until she turned on the radio and her Beach Boys tunes were interrupted by an emergency alert. She was ready in a moment, grabbing X-persons who were on hand to help her take down the small horde of demons infiltrating the zoo.

Meanwhile in Attilan…

Kalama slumped against the wall with a groaning sigh. "When does the training ever end?" comes the momentary complaint from the newest Inhuman. She had been at it all day at the insistence of Karnak that she learn her powers, and more approrpiately - how to use her powers in ways that people don't expect. That second point had been hard one.

She only has one companion at the moment in the training room, the teleporting Inhuman Dog, Lockjaw. He tilts his head and looks at Kamala and woofs.

"What's that? Timmy fell down a well? There's trouble that requires some help? I mean, I suppose I can try to help!" she pulls back in her elongated arms that were noodling ineffectively from her training and they snap back into place as she morphs into ther Miss Marvel costume. "Or oh, oh, we can go for some ice cream!" she offers with a grin.

Lockjaw looks at her. Mala looks back.

"Fine. Trouble first." she relents, head hanging low for just a moment before she rebounds and jogs up next to the large creature to wait for teleportation.

The pair arrive at the Bronx Zoo in a burst of blue and black teleportation energy as the pair pop into existance, and Kamala finds herself standing just outside the monkey house. Of course, all the monkeys start hooting and hollering at the pair, and the young woman blinks. "This.. was the trouble?" she asks Lockjaw in confusion.


That's when Kamala notices the gaggle of flamingos. "…still looks like a problem for animal control, Lockjaw." she points out as she blows a puff of air into her hair. Then there's the people screaming. "Okay okay, I know! I'm on it! Hero time!"

When Illyana found Doug, he had put some music on and he was shakin' his bacon. Shake shake~ Then she called him and he fell over the back of the couch.

"Demons, huh?" A momentary detour to the school's sports supplies shed and he got a seasoned, taped-up old hockey stick. "Okay. I'm ready."

…Some time later, he's watching the flamingos, and giving Illyana a very puzzled look — he points at them, and one can practically see the '?' over his head.

That'll teach Danielle to make use of X-persons' gym, won't it. Getting yoinked out a workout for shenanigans may be other than what she planned, but at least she's dressed for it. The good old black'n'gold' outfit, with her customary turquoise belt around her hips. Plus that duffle bag she insisted on bringing along. It honestly didn't occur to her to protest when Illyana yoinked her.

"Flamingos aren't exactly known for predatory behavior," she muses as she takes a look over the chaos in the zoo. "And birds are… I don't want to say 'dumb', but they're hard for me to get a read at the best of times. So!" So she drops her bag at her feet, then crouches to fish out a trio of long sticks. One with a nasty pointy metal bit at the end. She nimbly screws the three pieces tightly together, and straightens, now holding a fierce-looking spear. "Let's keep them from eating anyone, yeah?"

"Just wait a moment," Illyana says, glancing toward Doug. At about this time one of the flamingos opens its mouth wider than it has any business opening, emits a screech like a dragon in a Ray Harryhausen movie, and emits a gout of fire that sets a terrified macaw aflame. The other bird screeches and spirals down, crumbling to ash as it hits the ground.

"Demon flamingos. Some of the idiots who escaped during the attempted coup," the Russian says. Silvery armor materializes around her, and her sword, glittering with white flame, appears in her hand. She looks at her companions. Dani with her pointy sticks (which some might call spears) and Doug with his hockey stick, and then utters a sigh. "Right. Come closer." She crosses her legs, floating in mid-air, and whips up a rapid spell to give their weapons greater effect against creatures of magic.

Meanwhile, one flamingo has cornered a trio of bengal tigers on Tiger Mountain. Another is herding fleeing zoo patrons toward a third, waiting around a blind corner. The demon that burned up the macaw is wheeling in the sky, torching birds left, right and center. Some of them were supposed to be in the exhibit tomorrow. Others are common pigeons and sparrows that are just in the wrong place at the wrong time.

"Alright, Lockjaw, let's be hero— where are you going?!" Kamala just now notices that Lockjaw is about to leave. The large dog just looks at Mala for a moment and Kamala frowns. "…what do you mean you're getting the ice cream? Sigh. Fine!" With a quick hug to the dog, the woman considers for a moment. "Follow the screams, Miss Marvel. That's where the help is." she tells herself.

And in order to get there faster, she elongates her arms and starts to swing along the trees, using one arm to grab a branch before snaking out the next to propel her quickly along the tree-lined path as she looks up into the sky at the flaming demon maccaw. "…uh. Can't reach that one." she tells herself as she sees the one that is trying to herd the patrons. "Shouldn't you be migrating south for the winter?!" she calls out. "…wait, they're zoo animals. Demons. Something! Probably don't even understand English." she mutters as she tries to get between the crowd and the flamingo to cut it off.

Doug reaches down and picks up the ashy remnants of that toucan between two fingers, little more than a crispy skeleton and some burnt black feathers. He holds it up to Dani and Illyana and then says "Sorry, girls, the bird's a little overdone. Looks like we're going out for pizza tonight. Shouldn't have let Sam cook. Oh well" He tosses it away with a 'yuck' and then grabs that hockey stick in both hands. "Come on!" He calls to the Flamingo circling in the sky, "Come GET SOME!"

Danielle grunts quietly as magic tingles through her weapon, a wry smile of thanks for Illyana, and as soon as it's done, she's charging down into the fray. Seeing a vaguely familiar yet stretchy figure pursuing the one, Dani chooses a different target, and breaks into a sprint towards Tiger Mountain. Using her spear as a vaulting pole, she leaps to the top of a cart, then across to a low roof, then scrambles up and over the barrier wall. She doesn't yell at the flamingo threatening the tigers, doesn't waste her breath as she lands in a tumbling roll.

If she'd brought her bow, she'd feel a lot better about attacking from a distance, but she's not about to hurl her spear and risk missing. That leaves the fairly unsophisticated approach. Namely, bullcharge the demonbird, pointystick first.

Illyana watches the others taking off, Doug challenging the bird in the sky, Dani taking the fight up the mountain where the tigers are growling and hissing at the fire-breathing avian. Good enough. And it appears they have an ally. She does not recognize the dusky-skinned young woman in blue, but teleports to back her up — she can sense the other demon lurking in wait for its prey. "Flamingos are non-migratory," she notes to the girl. "And these demons -do- speak English."

The demon flamingo that Kamala is facing down supports this statement by pronouncing, "Oh, my! It's Her Majesty, Queen Illyana! Am I supposed to bow and grovel, Your Highness?" It spits a ball of flame at Kamala as punctuation — and its compatriot comes around the corner to swing a far-too-sharp talon at Illyana from behind.

The bird in the sky spots Doug and his challenge. "I know you, Linguist," it says. "Really, you think you can fight me? Any of us? You were always worse than useless — a burden on your friends." It dives out of the sky at Doug, wings bursting into flame.

And the demon that was planning a pleasant lunch of roast tiger turns to face Dani in turn, diving down and out of the way of her charge. "The red girl!" it says in clear delight. "Your kind is so delightfully sweet. A certain bear tells me he ate your mother. Best meal he ever had!" One of the tigers, roaring in rage and fear, launches itself toward the flamingo — but its dodge puts the beast on a course for Dani instead!

"…that's what I get for not paying attention in Animal Sciences.. and they do?" Oh. They so do, as Kamala finds out the hard way. The blonde woman is not recognized by the young Inhuman, but she catches a flash of yellow out of the corner of her eye. Oh hey, she might recognize the Cheyenne! But that'll be later, you know, when the heroes celebrate their victory at the 31 Flavors, right?

…at least when Captain America, Marvel and Iron Man defeated the Whatizit and saved Unicorn Island, that's what they did!

Then Kamala realizes something. "This is totally my first team-up!" she says ever so brightly as she launches herself high into the sky to avoid the fireball. As she sprongs upwards, she cups her hands together and starts to come down. "EMBIGGEN!" she cries out, her fists growing to the size of hot dog carts as she attempts to bring them down on the flameingo.

Doug pushes himself up on his toes and takes a ready stance. "Yeah yeah, I know I should've just done what dad wanted and gone on mission and then straight into law school" He grinswell, it's more of a half-grimace. "But what can I say, the life of a mutant adventurer was just too *sexy* to resist" And then his eyes brighten. "But if I was a burden, it was one they wanted to carry… and hey" He reads the Demon-Bird's movements, and side-steps it, before he swings the hockey stick across its back, "I'm FULL of surprises!"

Danielle skids to a halt when she overshoots her target, and digs in a heel to pivot around again. And suddenly finds a tiger bearing down. She tucks her shoulder and rolls to the side to avoid its pounce, then reaches out her left hand, fingers up, palm out, towards the big cat. She keeps her spear braced and ready in her right hand, and her eyes on the demonbird. Her attention, though, is more on the scared feline.

Her empathic abilities come more comfortably with animals, and she reaches out to soothe and reassure. She isn't the enemy. She's here to protect the cubs, too. The bird is the enemy. The bird is danger. They can hunt and kill the bird together.

Attempting to calm and direct the tiger's fury also keeps her own temper in check, and she smiles very, very slowly at the taunting pink demon. "He's next on my list. You're just the practice round. See… he knows me. He's scared of me." She straightens up and focuses her full attention on the bird, showing no fear of the tigers. "I wonder what you're scared of, pinkie." This time, her powers don't reach out gently. No, she lashes out with her full power, tugging the demon's darkest fear out into the open.

Illyana finds herself grabbed from behind by a pair of fiery wings. "Hello, K'thrang," she says mildly, the metal of her armor preventing direct damage — though she knows it will grow awfully hot in short order. "I was wondering when you'd show up. It wasn't a bad plan, you know, but I'm not going to let you boys kill anything and you know it."

K'thrang looks nonplussed — if a flamingo can be said to look nonplussed. "Well, Majesty," he replies in a gravelly voice that spits cinders into her hair, "I figure I've got the drop on you and we are going to have an awful lot of fun with your friends."

"I really rather doubt that," Illyana replies.

The fireball spat at Kamala hits the concrete ground, not coming close to hurting anything or anyone. It looks up just in time to see her immense fists coming down toward it. The problem with possessing birds is that they have bird frailties. Like hollow bones that shatter easily. The demon squeals in agony as its wings crumple. Doug's target finds itself in a similar situation, albeit not quite so dire. he's managed to strike it with the hockey stick, but only one wing and a leg have been broken. This does not leave it in much better shape than the other — just in less pain.

And then Dani pulls free the greatest fear of these creatures.

The image that appears shouldn't be much surprise to Doug or Dani. They've both been to Limbo at one point or another. Neither of them is unaware of the way that Illyana rules her dimension — the demons are ruled by fear, because it's the only thing they understand sufficiently to make it an effective tool in ruling them. So when a giant Illyana appears in the sky, a giant Illyana with curling black horns, red scaled skin, a forked tongue, cloven hooves, and eyes like those of a goat, it may terrify the people around them, but those who know Illyana should not be much surprised.

K'thrang clearly is, though, and he makes the mistake of loosening his grip on Illyana — who could have teleported away any time, really — enough that she can stab backwards with her soulsword. The demon collapses to a small pile of filth on the ground.

There is a very satisfying crunch as the pair of massive fists smack into the flamingo. "It.. is.." Kamala lifts her fists and looks down at the bird she just crushed and then looks at her fists. "Eww." she makes a face. "Does demon blood stain?" she asks noone really in particular. But she's looking towards the people that were running. "Back this way, the exits are in this direction!" she points towards the gates that her and Illyana came from. She starts to turn to check on the others.

And any other comment that may have come out of her mouth is lost as the really big demonic Illyana shows up to the party, and the young woman is left to stare upwards, and then at Illyana, as if.. trying to process that those two are one in the same. Or … exactly what she's seeing, as she murmurs. "Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah." (May Allah have mercy on me.)

It's a hell of a gut check, and for the moment, Miss Marvel is completely open to attack at the sight of demonYana.

Doug watches the Demon-Bird he was fighting gawp in horror at the Darkchylde, and he leans on his hockey stick. "I know, right? She's something else, isn't she? Wanna know a secret?" He says, to the bird, "She's terrified that one day she's going to turn on us, but I don't think she ever will—" He lifts up the hockey stick and high-sticks the bird, with a vengeance.

"'Cause NOBODY can make Illy do anything she doesn't want to do!" WHACK! Then he gestures to a group of Indian-American onlookers, and he speaks to them in Hindi, directing them to please ignore the demonic phantom and proceed to the exit, all is well…!

Danielle is hardly surprised that a gigantic demonic Illyana is the terror of these silly little demonthings. She gestures to her tiger friends, then rushes ahead to stab the demon in the juicybits, before backpeddling to let the tigers have their fun.

Behind Kamala, the demon flamingo whose wings she crushed rises onto its legs unsteadily, then starts to charge toward her… only to have Illyana teleport between them and run it through with her soulsword. Like K'thrang, the monster bird collapses into grotesquerie without even a squawk of protest.

She moves up alongside Kamala, regards the giant demonic version of herself in the sky. "Dani does horrifying me pretty well," she concludes before putting a hand on Kamala's shoulder. "You said it was your first team-up. Be careful. Don't let it be the last." She jerks a thumb over her shoulder at the demon's remains, then raises her voice. "Dani? Doug? You two okay?" she calls out.

The screech of demon being cleaved in twain by soulsword startles Miss Marvel and for a moment, the young woman is visibly shaken. Kamala has to blink a couple of times before lifting her gaze to Illyana and she gives a curt nod of her head. "Don't tell Karnak I blanked out, she'll throttle me." In a loving, motherly way, for sure.

Dani? As in Danielle? She briefly recalls the name, but now it makes more sense as she glances over at the others. "Unless that's a magic hockey stick, he might need some help." is offered to Illyana with a glance towards where Doug is going all Canadian Bacon on one of the flamingos.

Doug pops up, holding his hockey stick, and gives a thumbs up. "Doin' great! Just finishing mine off!" He gives it another solid WHACK with that magically souped-up piece of sports equipment, and then he wipes his forehead. "Phew! Reminds me of the old days."

He leans on his hockey stick, and he eyes what's left of that Flamingo, and then he says, "You know what? I was all set to do Greek tonight but I am *off* chicken for the next week at least. How about fish? Never had to fight a demonic fish…"

Danielle watches her fallen foe a bit longer, then slowly makes her way out of the tigers' home. The gigantic image of Illyana fades away into nothingness as the demon falls. As the tigers get a bit of vengeance. "I'm good. I'm good. Not half as bad as I'd thought." she calls as she makes her way back towards the others.

The remaining demons are dead — along with the poor flamingos — but they take longer to dissolve. Illyana's spells can't offer Dani and Doug the same potency of weapons as her soulsword has because their weapons aren't made from their own souls. But it was enough to kill the demons, and that's certainly good enough for Illyana. The tigers will wind up playing with feathers and demon goo until it's gone. Like kittens.

"I don't even know who Karnak is," Illyana tells the young woman beside her. "Thank you for the assistance. I've got no idea who you are, either, but that doesn't change the appreciation." Her mouth twists into a wry smile at Doug's comment. "I'll make sure not to bring you along if they go to an aquarium."

"Me?" Kamala offers up a smile after a moment after making sure that the bystanders were out of the way. "I'm Ms. Marvel." she responds finally. Since Captain Marvel gave her permission to use the name, it's the first time she's really gotten a chance to use it since it was granted. The young woman smiles warmly towards the others.

Danielle gets a little wave, sort of recognition of the woman from the botique opening.

Doug shoulders his hockey stick, and thrusts his hand out to Kamala. "Kheifa haluki?" He says, beaming brightly, before he looks over at Illyana, and says, all solemnity, "I appreciate that, Illyana, I really do. But you know me, always up for a round of swat the demon—" Then he adds, "Say, if you haven't met him yet, I brought a new friend to the school and I REALLY want to introduce you guys to him."

Danielle dusts herself off and checks the others. She smiles curiously at Ms. Marvel, then peers thoughtfully, and offers a wave of her own. Perhaps recognition. But she nods her gratitude regardless and offers, "Mirage. Cypher. Magik." With appropriate thumb-jutting at the relevant name/face. "Brave of you to jump in like that. Most people get a little… skittish around demons and whatnot." There's a hint of a teasing tone there, perhaps aimed Illyana-wards.

There's a blink from Kamala when Douglas greets her in Arabic. It's not much different than her native Urdu, as she responds. "Wa'alaikum assalam." before she hears the word school, and she's looking towards the others and clutches her hands together. "You mean.. there's others our age in a school?" she asks, looking positively estatic about the idea. "I know someone that once wrote a story about younger versions of the Avengers being in school, but that was just silly!" she says with a small laugh, before she hears the talk of food.

"I have not yet had ifthar, if you do not mind company?" She's met so few powered beings around her age - and it would be nice to not have to worry about upsetting the Inhumans for a night. And making contact with new people.

She looks around as Danielle makes the introductions, making note of each person. "I really like your outfit." That's what a teen would say, right? Especially from the girl wearing the heavily modified burkini. Because that blue domino mask, it makes all the difference, right? "But I was trying to convince Lockjaw to take me for ice cream - but I probably should eat something more substansial."

Illyana grins. This has all worked out quite well. The Quadruplets are no more — K'thrang, Th'jrang, J'mrang, and M'krang were idiots in Limbo, and seriously, flamingos? There are more demons out there who need to be brought in, but they will wait for another evening. For the moment her sword disappears, and her armor fades away, leaving her in perfectly normal clothes — jeans and a blue cotton blouse. "I can pick up the tab," she says. "Least I can do to say thanks."

Then Doug actually blushes, turning beet red. "I'm really sorry," He says, "I just assumed—I shouldn't have assumed. I usually get languages right. I shoud've listened more closely." He rubs the back of his neck, and says, "Well, I DID go to school with these two… but it wasn't exactly super-hero college, just… you know, a private school." He looks down, those round cheeks of his still blazing.

That sound that was definietly not a snort definitely did not come from Danielle. Not even slightly. Nope. She fiddles with her spear, and it comes apart into three sections once more. And then vanishes neatly into her retrieved duffle bag. "Gimme a second," she asks, fishing out a small pair of shorts and a slightly oversized t-shirt. After tugging both garments on, over her black'n'gold uniform, and adjusting her belt accordingly, she looks more like a dance student than a demon-stabbing giant-demoness-making herotype. "I keep getting in trouble when I add 'for misfits' to the end of 'private school', but that doesn't mean it's not true.."

"They share the same root, it is not an issue, Cypher. I am from what is now known as Pakistan." she explains, as Kamala watches everyone change into their civilian garb. After a moment, she considers and morphs her costume away to change into a flowing tunic type dress with leggings and long sleeves, and a scarf around her neck. She gives her hair a slight fluff as she glances to Danielle. Definetly should recognize her now. "We already know each other." is offered about Danielle. "We met during Miss Boileau's party." But there's a moment where she considers, and then decides. A little trust goes a long way. "I'm Kamala."

"Illyana," responds the blonde. "Friends call me 'Yana, mostly." She glances toward Doug. "Or Illy. When they want to annoy me," she adds, smirking slightly. "It's a pleasure to meet you, Kamala. Now… let's all go find someplace to eat. I'm certain there's decent fish and chips somewhere in this city, and that should satisfy Doug's need for seafood."

"Mai Eik Din Pakistan Jana Chahta Hun." Doug says, before he looks up, and gives Illyana a sideways smirk. "She loves me. We're besties." He says, to Kamala, before he looks to Illyana and Danielle, and he puts his finger over his mouth, "I think I know just the place. You know, when I was in the UK, I really developed a fondness for crunchy-fried eel, it's really good, and it's *everywhere* there—"

Dani smiles a bit more warmly, nodding. "I'm Dani. Good to see you again." See? She does rememeber. "A different sort of excitement this time, mm?" The Cheyenne woman gathers her things and swings her duffle over her shoulder, then puts her free hand on Doug's shoulder to start prodding him to both move and muse at the same time. "No eel. Regular normal American fish," she warns.

"My Ammi taught me when I was young that it was impolite to speak Urdu around those that don't understand it. It makes you sound as though you are speaking about them." Kamala chides gently, but with a teasing tone. "I have yet to visit it myself, I was born in Jersey." She winks and then nods to Danielle in complete agreement. "Fish and chips sounds delightful!"

Illyana's nose wrinkles. "I'm sorry. My grandmother made eels and pork with onions when I was very small. It was not a dish I enjoyed and I do not think I will ever be able to eat eel. On the other hand, fried haddock, fried halibut, fried cod. These things I will happily eat." A large glowing disk opens at her feet. "All aboard for the best fish I know of."

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