1964-09-29 - Crab Trouble in Little Chinatown
Summary: Mike and Johnny encounter a little mutated lobstrocity trouble in Chinatown.
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
Theme Song: None
johnny-storm mike-matthews 

It started off like any other early morning at the market — with the clamor of people coming and going, the produce being set out as well a the freshly caught fish brought in and set up on beds of ice. There's a mixture of languages being shouted here and there in the heart of Chinatown. And in the middle of that strolls one Mike Matthews, in a pair of jeans, a long sleeved t-shirt and a windbreaker tied around his waist now that the very early morning chill has begun to burn off and it has started to warm up.

Johnny for his part is in jeans and a t-shirt, and as usual they are so skin-tight that the shirt at least hides only skin color, not form or function. He followed along with Mike. He doesn't have a jacket, but he wears jackets only for show, and today he doesn't bother. "So, Chinatown. Its not quite Hong Kong but its *almost* like that."

It starts off as a few folks milling around over to one side of the market, traffic slowing as some of the shouting is a bit louder than in other areas. It's not so bad as to really attract notice until an actual scream goes up from the crowd and several people start running away from that end of the market. It's difficult to see what is going on through the people, but when one of the workers tries to climb up the awning and falls back through, only more screaming starts coming from that direction.

"Does Hong Kong usually sound like that?" Mike asks with both brows raised, and then starts to jog over in that direction, trying to get a better look at what is going on.

"…everywhere sounds like that, eventually." Though Johnny says this with a sigh as he shakes his head, "Back!" He says loudly, lifting a hand and letting it burst into flame— to encourage people to move out of the way as he goes towards the screams with that. "Though 'usually'? I rather hope not."

There's a gasp from those in the general vicinity around Johnny when something bursts into flames and then they realize that it's him. People recognize him, a good majority of them, and those who don't just back the hell out of the way anyway, giving him a bit more of a clear path to what's going on.

What appears to be going on is that a load of fish was being poured out of bins from the back of a truck when a very large, very slimy, very… well it's large and slimy and it has great bulbous eyes and claws and appears to be the size of a large dog. Is it a crustacean? Sortof. It seems to have a carapace and many legs but also a gelatinous head atop with those giant black eyes with their nictating membranes on tall stalks. One worker clutches an arm where those claws managed to crack bone. Another who tried to scramble up through the awning has fallen behind the tables and is busy trying to scramble his way out from beneath while the large strange mutated sea monstrosity tries to snap at him with its claws.

MIke runs in and grabs a hold of the guy's forearm and shirt and helps drag him out from under the tables to safety on the other side. Meanwhile, the thing scurries around behind the tables under the awnings, sending workers scrambling. Meanwhile, in the truck, two more break free from their plastic tubs and come scrambling over the edge.

Johnny pauses a moment, blinking; slime monsters? He is not used to slime monsters. In fact: "… that's a slime monster …" he says with some astonishment and wonder. The world is strange indeed. "… no that's a lot of slime monsters. Flame on." And immediately his whole body bursts into flame, not itself quite the pure liquid fire he can be in plasma form, but hot enough when it needs to be. He rises into the air a few feet and then zooms towards one of the things, burning yellow-hot as he nears and sending a gust of flame into it. Are slime monsters flammable?

Well, it's a slimy monster, not wholly slime, but the top of it certainly is gelatinous atop its crustacean-like body. And when Johnny comes flying at it, it makes every attempt to not be where he is. Unfortunately, the flaming gust that collides with its soft squishy bits do in fact ignite it with a hiss and a sizzle not unlike bacon hitting a frying pan, except the stench is all brine and stale fish. With its head on fire, it starts running around wildly, knocking over fish traps and lighting them on fire as well as the edge of the awning which begins to go up, sending two more of the things scuttling out into the marketplace to try and get away.

Mike manages to get the guy out from under the table and to safety and continues to help the crowd get back, assisting where he can to clear people away so Johnny can deal with the creepy crawlies.

Johnny pauses, lifting a hand up and calling to the flame that is not on the slimy monster, pulling its heat out and to him. Considering his powerset is entirely focused on distruction, what he does later is fly over to the farthest of the creepy things and crash down into it and give it a loving, burning hug. It might claw and bite at him, but he solves that by going from flesh encased in fire to pure, loving, hugging plasma. "This is so gross!" he calls over to Mike, though. "Let me know if you see one getting away, Mon-El!"

"Nobody told you to snuggle it!" Mike calls back from where he works on getting the crowd out of the way. He runs over and grabs a woman struggling with her bags trying to protect her groceries, probably all she can afford while attempting to back away. He picks her and the bags up handily and runs them to the end of the street, leaving her standing there, bewildered, before he runs back.

The one that Johnny hugged simply erupts and burns, sizzling, shell blackening and then disintegrating to a fine white ash in the face of that plasma heat. The sound is pretty horrifying, a high pitched screeching and popping sound. "Over there!" Mike calls out and points toward one that was hiding under the truck making a break for the sewer, as though to escape that way.

The Human Torch is, srangely or expected, unmoved by slimy monster lobster screams. Once it seems sufficiently damaged, he streaks up into the sky— that itself leaving fire burning down to the poor crab slime monster and likely finishing it off— and then zoomes down with enough speed to send a heatwave flashing around him and slam into the sewer granting and face off against the creature. "I *did not* snuggle it!" he declares, "I don't snuggle." Except he does a little, but no one knows that. He has an image to project! He flings his hands out and sends bursts of fire streaming forward to crash into what tried to escape.

Mike Matthews can't help but laugh a little, just a little, and he has the good graces to at least attempt to hide it when he does. Then he's off to try and check the truck to make sure that there aren't any others that have managed to get away. Seeing one trying to scramble its way around the back, he takes off after it and grabs ahold of a large freezer and tips it over on top of the creature, sending all kinds of parts squishing in all different directions.

The one facing off against Johnny tries to make a dash for the sewer grate to go floating down, IT style. Unfortunately, Johnny's there in front of it. It brandishes a claw and then tries to scuttle away in the opposite direction, instead, heading toward the crowd of people.

Eww. Squish. Johnny either does not, or chooses not to, notice any laughing that might be happening. "Hey!" Its running away. You know, when monsters run away, you're just inconvienencing the heros. "I was killing you!" He complains, launching himself up into the air and then hurling his flaming self at the thing, trying to catch it in a roll before it can get to people. Not that Johnny around people is especially the safest thing in the world, but he's got control enough to usually not do a lot of collateral damage.

Fortunately, the people in the market have at least some sense of self-preservation and go scattering when the fireball comes streaking toward the lobstrocity that is skittering its way toward them. The thing goes up in flame and a sizzling explosion of goo when Johnny catches it in a roll.

Meanwhile, Mike pulls the freezer back up into place and makes sure it's still working after the abuse he's done to it. Also, the squished critter seems to be dead. Going back to the truck, he opens the rest of the plastic tubs to make sure there aren't anymore hiding in there. "I think we got them all," he calls out to Johnny once he's done searching, and hops down to the ground. A man comes up to him, speaking rapid-fire chinese and gesturing at the truck and the tubs and the stand, arms flailing. Mike looks a little bewildered and says, "But.. it's safe.. safe.. all gone, no more.. " He makes pincers with his hands and makes pinching motions.

Burning, Johnny looks this way and that, and considers. But as Mike's evaluation prooves true, he descends to the ground and the flames evaporate as his body reasserts itself in a more normal biological fashion. He can't help himself but to laugh at Mike's pantomiming, stepping up beside him. Shirtless. Apparently the shirt he was wearing was *not* one of Reed's make, but Johnny likes to keep them washed. Hands on hips, he smiles at the chinese man, "All. Is. Well." He nods his head encouragingly, and points at Mike's hands, "No. Crab. Monsters."

The merchant seems a bit frustrated at the damage but finally just waves his hands at both of them as though to shoo them away. Shoo. Shoo. Shoo. The crowd around, however, breaks into applause. Several people run over to the remains of the crab things to poke at them a bit, though the ones Johnny saw to are little but fine ash. With that done, Mike takes a moment to appreciate the shirtless Johnny, not that the shirt really left much to the imagination either but, hey. Then he laughs a bit as the merchant makes more shooing noises and he begins to walk away, tugging Johnny with him with a bit of chuckle as he murmurs under his breath once they are out of ear-shot, "You did *so* snuggle it."

Johnny sighs, long-suffering, but he is shooed. There's applause though, and he smiles his best smile— it's a good one— and shakes some hands and nods at some people. He's a people person. These are his people. But, Mike tugs, so Johnny follows, and once they are out of earshot, he speaks with complete dignity, "I was applying constraining pressure with a dose of fire. If this is considered a snuggle by anyone on this planet, they're fireproof." And at that, he laughs.

"I'm just teasing you," Mike says with a broad grin that reaches from ear to ear. Oh, he doesn't pull Johnny away from his fans or the autographs, no. Just far enough away from the merchant so that he can tease him before stopping to allow him his time with the public. Mike just stands off to one side, hands in his pockets, seeming more than content to watch people shake hands with Johnny. He finds himself a nice wall to lean against and there he waits until the crowd handling is over.

Johnny likes his people, but he does disengage. Heading over to Mike, he leans against the wall, and bumps shoulders with him. He grins, though. He always grins. "Oh I know. Mikey, you can't possibly offend me if you tried, so you don't need to explain away an offense. I was just teasing you in what I said, myself. I don't actually take myself so seriously that some ribbing actually bugs me." He bumps shoulders again, at that.

"But seriously enough to need to explain that I couldn't offend you when I know full well that you're impervious to such things," Mike says with a wink and returns the shoulder bump. Oh, it's just a back and forth now, and Mike's broad grin only remains so. He does, eventually though, pull away from the wall and says, "So, more trouble?" He begins to wander on down the street then, away from the market.

"We're entering into a high-degree meta-conversation now." Johnny chuckles, and bumps right back again. Even though he knows full well Mike could throw him through a wall: their relative strengths don't really phase or concern Johnny in the momment. Just that this shoulder-bump is while walking. "I will never vote yes to more trouble; life is too short." But he sighs, long-suffering and with a grin on his lips the moment the sigh is done, giving lie to the sigh, "I am a creature of engagement."

Mike Matthews can't help but laugh and shakes his head just a bit. "Well, I mean, trouble tends to result in you ending up in less clothing, which I will always vote yes to," he points out with a little flash of a grin and another appreciative glance over Johnny's shirtless form. But at least the further they move from the market, the quieter it seems to get. No screams and pincers at least for the time being. "Found an overturned taco truck in Central Park the other night. I took the driver to the ER while a couple of other guys tried to figure out what'd happened. Could always head over there. There almost always seems to be something weird going on at the park."

Keeping his dignity again, Johnny says loftily, "I can not properly underestimate how expensive Reed's fabrics are, so when I don't expect trouble, I wear regular fabric. Topside." And then he grins, and shrugs, "And fuck me if its fun for anyone to watch. I make no apologies for being pretty." He grins more, "And neither do you." Shoulderbump again. But more seriously then, "True that, the park's a magnet of trouble. Let's head that way; worst case scenario, there's no drama."

He just grins, giving no contest to any of that at all. It all works out to his advantage one way or the other. He takes the shoulder-bump in stride, chuckling just a bit as he tries to keep his eyes on the road just enough so that he doesn't lose his own dignity by walking into something or falling into a hole. Because that just wouldn't be the princely thing to do. Turning away from Chinatown, they wander their way out to Central Park without any further incident. Even the park itself seems quiet — at least for the moment.

It's just a moment, but Johnny's hand falls down to clasp Mon-El's. He squeezes, his flesh as always fever-hot but natural for the son of fire that he is. But he lets just that moment pass before he lets go and slips his hand sinto his pockets, nodding, and walking to the park. Quiet or not, likely as not, SOMETHING will happen. "Hungry?" he inquires, "There's a deli across that way, okay so its not a short walk, but its soups are great. My treat." He grins himself then.

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