|EVENT: The Flood.|
|What: The JLA and Stonewall attempt to protect New Jersey from an unexpected Tsunamy (emits by Superman)|
New Jersey, United States
The sun beats down on the beach and the water, hitting the waves every so often and creating a blinding reflection. The sand is backed with families, trying to hold on to the last backwash of summer before school and the routines start. The boardwalk is even fuller. The stands and shops are packed with tourists eager to find their trinkets before they end their vacations. Screams begin to ring out as the ground begins to shake wildly. Several of the lightly made stands falter and cave in almost immediately; luckily they are made of cheap material mostly and only injuries happen immediately. A quarter of a mile out in the water, a pair of brothers (12 and 8) have taken their rented rowboat out a little farther than boey. By the time their frantic mother notices, it's too late. A very large wave nearly capsizes the pair, but they're lucky to still be upright. From his vantage point on the beach, Stonewall can see what's happening with the two boys and the shrieking mother. Clearly, they won't survive long out there. Only a powerful swimmer will be able to save them.
Meanwhile, the Justice League is contacted through their normal channels. An earthquake off the coast of the United States is threatening to cause a tsunami. Military, police, and fire personnel are rushing to the scene all over the nation but the area of most immediate damage looks to be New Jersey.
By the time Stonewall reaches the boys, their boat is upside down and the waves are getting higher and higher.
Stonewall had hoped to spend his day off trying to find a date somewhere on the beach, it's generally a good place to pick up girls and he does look good shirtless... But that was before that little hairy guy kicked the crap out of him in that impromptu ring match, and Stonewall is now walking down the beach, shirtless, sporting the bruises of a solid whoopin'. Freakin midget had hands of steel or something. Yeesh. The shaking earth causes him to stumble and he looks up confued. Earthquake? It's freakin Jersey. He turns his head, looking at the buildings, the water, the people starting to run, and spots the woman with her waving arms and then her boys. He's in the water before thinking about it. He doesn't know surf or how to dive under waves, but he's dense, strong, and it's not like he gets tired easily, so he bulls through them, headed to the the little boat, his hand thumping down on it with a hollow noise, "Hey! You guys okay?" he rumbles.
Firestorm is at the Hall of Justice, reading the reports incredulous. Earthquake in the East Coast causing a tsunami? Very unlikely. But it might have been provoked, or maybe caused by a meteorite – but that should have been detected, right? Regardless, he is in the air in seconds, heading towards the coast a top speed. He stopped only to take a communicator, which he is now using, “I need to know where it is going to hit first. How the hell are we going to stop that? Tsunami waves displace thousands of tons of water, right?”
While Aspen can swim very fast, and this is a costal response, she can't move at the speed of some of her teammates. She does not however, have any problems with being carried. "Have they said how long until it should hit the shore? Evacuation's usually the best response. Tsunami's don't wash too far inland, usually." Arriving near the populated beach, she says "Just drop me down into the water. I'll try to help get everyone out quickly."
In one of those coincidences that often happen to superheroes, Colossus was in his government supplied private jump jet and on his way down to Metropolis to meet with the rest of the JLA. And since Jersey is between New York and Delaware, he only has to turn the jet around and fly for a couple minutes before arriving over the shore. "Clear the parking lot." the loudspeaker blares a few times as the jet starts descending on its VTOL jets while Colossus tries to avoid any parked cars or, worse, pedestrians.
How will they stop a tsunami, indeed? "I know a gal," Superman says into his communicator as he makes his way from the Arctic. "Piotr, and Firestorm, do what you can to get everyone out of the water." "Fathom," Superman says after a brief pause, "See what you can do about creating a wall of water."
Imagine the largest water park you've ever been too with those big wave pools. Imagine that but about three times as big. The young boys grab onto Stonewall, one on the arm one on the neck. For a split second the sun is blocked out from the sky and sends a shadow over Stonewall and the two boys. An outstretched hand reaches down towards the man, with blue sleeving ending at the wrist. "That was a pretty brave thing you did there. These boys owe you their life." The boat flips over right side up and Superman lifts Stonewall, and by proxy, the two boys into the boat. "Hold on." The Man of Steel braces both of the boys with his shoulders, but leaves the big guy to his own devices. They arrive on the shore in very little time. Superman looks to Stonewall, "Get as many of these people as far away from the shore as possible." Tsunami's usually don't go that far inland and usually don't cause that much damage, it's true, but this is no normal tsunami. There's certainly no fault line this close to the coast.
Stonewall reaches up and snags the wrist as it appears. Holy shi-er-crud. It's Superman. Like. /Superman/. Stonewall's fingers close around the offered grip with a firm strength and he pulls the boys with him, situating them with Supes as they're air lifted out of the water. He looks around, "How far is safe?" he asks, glancing over his shoulder, "Cause... don't look now, but we're being followed." by a giant wall of water. Stonewall isn't usually the one for jokes, but it's SUPERMAN and he's a CRIMINAL and this is just a fast defence mechanism kicking in.
"I'll give it a go." Fathom says before her she hits the water feet first, disappearing beneath the water's surface for a moment. When she rises again she doesn't just surface, the water literally lifts her upwards, the lower half of her body turning into water to merge with the ocean. Her dark hair is slicked back from her face as she turns to look out towards the Atlantic. Her hands raise up and the water around her starts to still, moving outwards to either side of her. Then, it starts to surge upwards, slowly rising as if it were clay being molded.
Firestorm arrives to the beach and... it has already started. It is like flood and it is faster than running people. He dives in, atomic energy flaring from his hands to create walls of stone from the sand and the water itself, trying to slow down the waves.
Get everyone out of the water? And just how is Colossus supposed to do that? He can't even swim. Which makes him wonder just why he's here at all since him versus tsunami only has one possible winner. Still, he races for the water's edge since that's what he gets paid to do and detours to a lifeguard's tower to grab a bunch of flotation devices. He can at least throw them to people.
"As far as you can," Superman says to Stonewall with a grim face. He turns back to see the gigantic wall just as Aspen lifts the water to either side up into the air. "Keep going, Fathom! As wide and as high as you can!" Firestorm, meanwhile, does much the same thing. To his embarrassment, Superman didn't realize the young hero could do that. Suddenly, this goes from being a no win situation into something they have a shot at. "Change of plans. Firestorm, you build to the right, Fathom goes to the left." Meanwhile, Superman begins to rush people off the beach as fast as his superspeed will let him. The big one is going to hit; going to hit soon.
Stonewall looks around at the heros rushing hither and yon, the people running, the screaming, "SOMEONE GET ME SOMETHING METAL!" he bellows. He's a big guy and his voice carries well. He's shirtless, bruised, and about to be hit by a mountain of water... but he'll live. The other people? He looks around again, his eyes scanning for something, anything, heavy and metalic enough to... ...Huh. His gaze falls on Colossus and he gathers himself before leaping over to the mutant, his landing... not very graceful as he trips in the sand and kicks up a wave of earth. Jumping he can do, landing not so much. "You!" he points at the Russian, "C'mere real quick."
@emit Firestorm walls are not working too well, there is a limit of mass he can change in a few second and he can’t build strong foundations fast enough. He needs to build a large, solid dike, and there is just not enough time. “I will try,” he replies to Aspen through the comlink, redoubling his efforts to raise the walls, starting in the center, then moving right, trying to be ahead of the flood. Sometimes just ‘freezing’ the water into stone.
So the water's been cleared, Superman's using super speedy flight to carry out pedestrians, Fathom and Firestorm are playing with watery walls and Colossus can stand there and wait to punch a wave. Until Stonewall leaps over. "What?" he asks, heading to the man. "Are you injured?" Activating the communicator, he says "Da, holding I can do." He can hold very well too!
Superman moves into position to hold the walls that Firestorm is building. Sensing the concern coming from the "Hot Head," he takes a deep inward breath and releases it into the water, freezing some of it at the base. It won't help everything, but he hopes he can dissipate some of the force as he creates a wall of ice. Three persons are now working on the walls, while Colossus and Stonewall congregate and go over Stonewall's plan.
Stonewall walks over to the shorter (iknowright?) Colossus and looks at him with a hard expression, "This is going to feel weird. Bare with me." and he reaches out and puts a hand on either one of Colossus's shoulders in a firm grip. Jerry closes his eyes and his lips pull back from his teeth in concentration. There's a tingling, which may be odd for Colossus, and then metal starts to pour up Stonewall's arms, his flesh shimmering, wavering, and many lined organic steel takes it's place. This isn't like when other mutants may have taken Piotr's power, because Stonewall's touch doesn't diminish the Russian all, he merely seems to... absorb the metal. "Rrrrrrggggaaaaahhhhh..." the big man growls under his breath and beneath his closed lids his eyes start to glow. "I need more!" his voice gutteral. His eyes, glowing pits, open and turn, looking out over the beach. A child at the edge trips, pulled beneath the mob and his mother screams frantically as she battles against the people to find her child. And Stonewall's jaw clenches, metal teeth audibly grind. That was the fuel he needed, the emotional kick. Colossus finds himself fifty feet in the clutched in the cupped hands of a giant bald metal man, who at the moment, oddly resembles a bald version of Piotr himself. Except, um... the giant man is now naked. Ahem. And breathing heavily with a crinkling metalic sound. "Thank you. Go." he says, bending down to set Colossus back onto the beach, he then turns metalic eyes to Superman, "Load me up." he says, a single stride allowing the sixty foot tall giant to cross the entire beach. "Fast. Make hand holds if they need them." His voice booms over the area as if from a megaphone, echoing with an odd hollow tin like sound, like thunder in a warehouse.
Firestorm is high enough to see the wall of water approaching and he curses loudly on the commling. “That is huge, like 20 meters high!” His walls seem tiny in comparison. Definitely they need to evacuate the beach faster, and all the nearby buildings too! And... well, looks like Colossus is 60 feet tall, maybe he can break the wave?
Aspen's concentration is broken because suddenly there's a great big... uhm, guy. Yes. That's it. She's left blinking as Stonewall strides over before she forces herself back to the matter at hand. "Just make the wall so that the strong men there can hold it in place. You can't stop something like that cold!" Fathom doesn't have time to explain more. She holds her line of wall for Firestorm to transform to stone so that the rest of the men can shore it up before she dives down beneath the water and swims out to meet it at blistering speeds. With the skill of a surfer, because she is one, she stops before it and matches speeds with the wall of water, and as they approach the wall she doesn't try to control all of it, just the base, letting it meet the wall at an angle, and then trying to 'pull' it up to fold it back on itself. It's a phenomenal amount of water, even just for the stretch of beach and all through it Fathom herself can't be seen through the churning surf.
Okay, Stonewall is not injured. He is though doing something very strange and if this weren't a life or death situation, Colossus might have something to say about it besides just letting it happen. But it is and his own powers are not being affected so when he's set down, he just blinks a moment and looks up at the now naked metal giant. "Bozhe moi." Yeah, not being a size queen he totally didn't need to see that. He's never been so glad to turn away from a naked man and runs to the freshly created wall to lend his support.
Now that Superman's icewall is now built (and quickly melting in the salt water, but that's neither here nor there, the water will hit before it loses too much thickness) he nods to Stonewall and begins bringing the rest of those in the water (21 persons in all) and plopping them down into his gigantic palms. Meanwhile, the final push is upon them. The wave has now reached it's terrifying height and at its crest, it make an incredibly unnatural backwards bend just before it crashes into walls of water, earth, and ice. BAM! All three walls collapse, but the realization of what has occurred is almost immediate. Though the heroes are unable to block the full blow, they've taken most of the energy out of the gigantic wave. What reaches the shore and the boardwalk is far more timid by comparison, leaving the scattered people safe.
Stonewall lifts his arms over his head, adding an extra fifteen to twenty feet to their height, protecting the collected civilians from the danger of the wave's impact, and he sets his feet firmly, his weight sinking his feet beneath the sand to the foundations beneath. The wave hits him and he leans into it with a metalic horn like cry of defiance, the water shooting up the length of him like waves against a cliff wall before surging past. He holds the people until he's sure of his footing in the swirling puch/pull of the churning water beneath him, and then turns to the nearest still standing building of at least four stories and holds his hands out there, letting the shaken civilians crawl off and onto the roof. Just in case there's a follow up wave or something. "They safe?" he asks Superman, his eyes looking back out to sea... When he sees nothing else that size, the corner of his mouth twitches and he turns to look back at the other heros. A lot of bright colors, spandex, and celebrities are around, heroes one and all, and Stonewall is suddenly, shamefully, aware of both his nakedness and his current proffession. The instant everyone's attention goes back out to sea, he vanishes, shedding the excess mass so that he is normal again, and he ducks into the alleyway behind the building where the people were. He's fast, strong, and snags a beach towel stuck on a bend light pole to wrap around himself as he makes tracks, vanishing into the world inland of Jersey Shore. He needs to get home, get some pants... When the heros turn back, they'll find the giant metal man is gone, vanished into thin air.
With the main wave mostly contained, Firestorm shifts his attention to damage control and make sure no one is killed. First he rebuilds the dike, stronger and taller, so further waves don’t get inland. “The tsunami must be hitting other points of the coast too,” he mentions, “how far in the sea was the earthquake, or whatever cause it?”
As the wave hits and curls back, Fathom appears, rising out of the crest. Her expression is a mask of concentration as she works on shaping some of the water and channeling the rest of it. As that main, massive wave dispersses she drops down, limp and exhausted.
Holding the wall steady is the easy part. The hard part for Colossus is when the wall shatters, the wave breaks over him, the sand under his feet disappears and the receding water drags him along. Actually, that was all easy too since he was just along for the ride. He ends up on the bottom of the ocean about half a mile out and starting the walk back to shore.
As Aspen drops into the water in a limp mass, she floats downward for a moment before she's pulled back up through the water and to the surface. Lightly, her face is tapped trying to get her to wake up. "Hey," Superman says. "You did it. We all did it."
And no one answers Firestorm’s questions. Hey, they are important questions, although maybe not voiced in the best moment. “Man, we are going to have to stay here a week to clean up this mess,” he grumbles. But at least no one died, hopefully. He joins Superman and Aspen as soon as the dike feels solid enough, but where are Colossus and the giant guy.
Aspen's eyeslashes flutter as Superman taps her face and then she's peering up at him. "I have... the worst headache." She says with a small laugh. Which only makes her head hurt worse and she winces. She tries to look around, "Is everyone alright?" There are a few people missing!
Colossus is unhurt, fully conscious and in no way disoriented. In fact, he could walk to Europe along the sea floor. So it's just a matter of time till he breaks the surface once he gets close enough to shore.
Now that it's clear that Fathom is alright, Superman turns to Firestorm, "I'm not sure what caused it. There's no fault line anywhere near here. We'll have to investigate. According to the readouts the only populated place that was in direct danger was here. It was almost...targeted." Superman's attention goes back to Aspen where he smiles a worried, then relieved smile down towards her. "Everyone got out," Superman says to her quietly. "They're okay."
Firestorm nods. Looks like a super-villain job or something, but why target a beach? Something to ponder and investigate soonish. “Alright, I am going to double check the dikes and help the firemen, which will be arriving any minute. Where is Colossus,” he looks around, but he can’t see underwater. “He can’t drown, can he?”
"I'll go look for him." Aspen says, scraping some of her hair back from her face as she moves back towards the water. She does pause, looking around. "What happened to the giant metal guy?"
Colossus doesn't need looking for since it's only a few moments more before his head crests the surface and then he's walking out of the water. "It worked." he notes, seeing the still standing boardwalk.
Superman gingerly lets Aspen back down into the water as she moves to go after Colossus, "Not sure about the other one. His power was something pretty crazy. I'd like to try and track him down." He nods and smiles to Colossus, "Swimming? At a time like this?"
Seeing Colossus appear brings a sight of relief from Fathom and she hugs the big metal man briefly and impulsively. Then she looks between Colossus and Superman, shaking her head. "You two better not make a habit of scaring the life out of me." She teases.
"Give me a place to stand and a lever long enough and I will move the world." Colossus tells Superman. "But that place is not a sandy beach which disappears under my feet." Smiling down at Fathom, he returns her hug then looks around. "Where did the naked giant go?"
Superman shakes his head again, "No clue. I lost sight of him. He must have shapeshifted soon after we lost visual. After a moment he looks to Aspen and purses his lips as he inspects her face. "You okay?"
Aspen gives Superman a nod, though she looks *exhausted*. "I'm fine, Superman, really. I've just never tried to deal with that much water with that kind of energy before. The difference between lifting a traincar and trying to stop it doing eighty miles an hour."
Colossus dismisses Stonewall since he's gone. "I am not a geologist but tsunamis do not just start that quickly so close to land, da? So it must have been created by someone and we can not let someone have that kind of power who uses it like this."
Superman nods to Colossus, but his eyes dart back to Aspen every so often. "Agreed. I suggest we figure out what the Navy has and investigate..." Now he turns to Aspen fully, "As soon as everyone has had rest."
"You know that I'm much better equiped to see what might be going on out there than the Navy." Aspen argues with Superman. "I'll check it out to make sure we don't miss anything and then I'll go rest. I promise." She says almost teasingly.
Piotr looks to Superman and then over to where he's looking and then flicks a gaze up at the sky a moment. It never fails, the hottest guy on the team has eyes only for one of the girls. "If you have not already, ask her out to dinner." He can only take a certain amount of cow-eyed mooning and one team leader is enough.
"No," Superman says defiantly as he raises an eyebrow. It's not clear at first who he's talking to, "You're not going anywhere. I'll take you back to the Hall. You're resting. That's an order." He looks to Colossus, "And your second in command is telling you have to have dinner with me. We can review intelligence while we eat."
Aspen blinks at Piotr. And then at Superman as he very firmly tells her 'no', followed up with the dinner bit and she's left a little like she's catching flies with her mouth open and nothing coming out.
"You're thinking with your..." Though Colossus' eyes flick down to Superman's shorts, he finishes with "...emotions." Looking to Fathom, he asks "Are you injured? Just tired? You can still safely do your job? Assuming the answers are nyet, da and da, then Superman will treat you like a competent member of the team who is best equipped to go make sure we won't be facing another tsunami a half hour from now. And then when you return, you can rest and he can take you out to dinner."
"No," Superman says, this time looking to Colossus. "She just fainted. She's not going down there until our doctors have had a look at her." Pause. "That'll be all, Colossus."
Aspen finally manages to close her mouth, lips pressed into an unhappy line and glances at Colossus and then past, to the people still lingering on the beach so they can gawk. "Fine. Have them ready when we get there. As soon as they give us the OK, I'm back out there. I could use one of the cruisers instruments anyway."
"She overexerted herself." Colossus counters, returning Superman's look and not going anywhere. "It happens. And the safety of hundreds of thousands of people who live along the coast is a priority." See? This is why you shouldn't date teammates. "But if you feel she is unfit, then I can fly her back to the Hall and you can sweep the ocean floor and make sure these people can return to their houses in safety." Glancing at Aspen, he nods. "And then she can join you here if needed."
Superman ignores Colossus and instead goes for his communicator, "Fathom, you can go with him or you can go with me. I trust our military to be able to investigate the matter, and I'm concerned for your health."
Aspen shoots a glance back and forth between Colossus and Superman. Hooooboy. She reaches up to rest her hand on Colossus' arm. "I'll go back with Superman." Oh, there's going to be Talks. "I'll see you at the Hall later."
"I'll be returning to New York then. Call if the military discover anything." Which is unlikely and since finding nothing doesn't prove there's nothing to find, they'll just have to search themselves anyway. Colossus nods to the others then turn and starts for his jet, muttering in Russian about thinking with balls and someone needing to get laid before anyone dies.