***HR. Washington DC***
“I, Alexander Joseph Luthor do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.” Lex said to the officer in front of him as he stood in front of the capitol building.
Lex Luthor stood with a triumphant smile on his face as he placed his hand on a bible and was sworn into office. When he had learned that nearly all of the US government leadership had been killed he used his influence, and ability to jump into office. They had done a quick time campaign across the US. He was in a specific position to help those in need and apply his candidacy for being President. But if he was being honest he didn't have a lot of competition.
A lot of the people that may have wanted to step in were terrified that another invasion would happen. Rifts were opening up across the globe! Some were small and easily dealt with. While others were large and stayed open for weeks at a time. One specifically in New York had swallowed Agent Wraith for nearly two days! He was still inside the Rift, last anyone reported. While other Rifts across the globe were spitting out creatures, and intelligent life that despite all attempts to come to a peaceful solution all seemed bent on destruction.
Lex finished swearing in and shook the hands of the other leaders now under his command. His sister, and mother were present for his big moment. Lex gave them a big, genuine smile! He always said he should be a ruler of men. Now he was! His sister Lena would take over his company while he was away, rules. While his mother would continue to work on the off the books, and now legitimate projects of the US government.
Lex was then escorted to his new office in the White House. An actual step down in luxury, and security for Lex. Something he would have to change in the future. His first appointment of the day. Straight into work to fix a broken country. Having years of experience handling share holders, investors, and sycophants. Lex cut through the bull shit quickly. His office was broken! People refused to come to work in fear of being attacked even though the invasion was over. This was when Lex truly understood how far under they were as a country.
It wasn't until the very end of the day that Lex was free to find some respite in his new room in the White House. There he pulled up his personal laptop, and put in his ten digit pass code. He opened up a bottle of whiskey and sat down in front of his laptop with a glass in hand. He reached up and pressed play on a video file he obtained a few months ago. A video file he got from...himself.
“Hello Lex...” Said Lex Luthor from the alternate reality.
“We have a lot to go over, and a lot to say. But first let's go over something that I tried, and if you are anything like me. You'll want to try yourself. Superman? If your Superman is anything like mine before he was brain boxed. Then I'll tell you now you are wasting your time trying to prove to the world that he is a villain.” AR-Lex said in the video and started to show news reports, and videos of all of his mistakes as he tried to prove to his reality that Superman was a false idol.
“However, I have to say that despite what I did. I don't regret my actions simply because I get the chance to help you! In this message are the detailed designs to every weapon I ever made to fight Superman. Because if your reality is anything like mine. Superman is not the last of his kind. I don't mean Supergirl, I mean the others. The others truly are what we always feared. Use these tools to help defend Earth.” AR-Lex continued, sending up several more files that Lex had looked over a dozen times already.
“But each journey starts with the first step. Lex, you need to become the President of America. It will make things so much easier in the long run. Once you have sworn in, and taken office please press the accept button on the message and we'll continue from there.” AR-Lex said from the message. Lex reached up and pressed the accept key....For a brief moment nothing happened. Then a live video feed went through.
“Hello Lex.” AR-Lex said to his doppelganger.
“Hello Lex.” Lex said back, a smile on his face.
“Let's get to work.” AR-Lex continued....
***Rift, Story/Cross Over***
Tropical Paradise! Lash Jormungandson spent three wonderful days with Natasha. Out in public they were simply friends, and co-workers. They had spoken about keeping their romantic, and or physical relationship a secret. Simply because it would complicate things in the long run. But every night! For most of the evening! They would enjoy each others company until the sun would rise. Lash used his Advanced Sex to the best of his abilities. But Natasha showed him a few new moves that was enough for him to obtain experience in the skill.
Now, they were standing on a tarmac waiting their turn as dozens of quin-jets came in from a nearby insight hellicarrier. Everyone was being sent off to missions across the globe. Oddly enough nothing of major concern happened for one straight week. Something that everyone was confused about but didn't want to jinx it. Even Director Hill took a single day off of work. Though she kept a holographic pad with her. She did at least get some sun before she left the next day.
A soft chime rang from Lash's pocket as he pulled out a Nova Corps communicator. He looked it over and activated the transmission. A direct message came from Nova Prime herself. They requested his attendance at Xandar for a mission. The first mission of their little partnership. Lash stepped away from his group of people and informed JARVIS of the change in plans. There was no tearful goodbyes, or passionate kissing from Natasha as he stepped away.
“Don't be a stranger.” Natasha said with a wink.
“Of course not Lady Romanoff!” Lash said with a bow from his waist.
“When your ready Heimdall!” Lash called to the sky, and a rainbow bridge crashed into the tarmac and sucked Lash up into the sky.
From Midgard, to Asgard, then down to Xandar. Xandar is the homeworld of the Xandarians and to many other species as the capital of the Nova Empire with a population of twelve billion. Xandar was located in the Andromeda Galaxy. Xandar appeared to be predominately covered by oceans. Additionally, Xandar's solar system contained three stars (two yellow and one red), which served as the inspiration for the Nova Corps' occulight symbol.
The capitol of Xandar was an artificially created atoll. The city itself was shaped into the Nova Corps symbol of Nova Empire red star. The Xandarian Empire was a lot like the Kree in the idea that several different species from different planets came together to form a galactic government. However, the Kree did this by force and brutalized anyone that said no. While the Xandar's were mostly benevolent in their intentions and tried to be a force for good in the Andromeda galaxy as a whole. Despite the competition, the Xandarian Empire controlled about 1/3 of Andromeda.
The rainbow bridge shot across the ocean of stars and crashed into a predetermined spot on the Xandar capitol. Then with a flash the bifrost faded from sight leaving behind Lash who stood in his Einherjar Asgardian uniform. He was in his default human appearance as he looked around. Standing in a burnt image of celtic knots. Standing there waiting for him were two uniformed officers of the Nova Corps. One Xandarian, and one Krylorian, their uniforms were a deep navy blue. With the typical inverted triangle energy points that make up the symbol of the Nova Corps.
“Asgardian, I am Rhomann Dey welcome to Xandar.” The Xandarian said with a polite smile. Rhomann was 5'10” with white skin, curly brown hair cut short to his head, and gray eyes. He had a rectangular figure with strict military officer training. He carried himself like a warrior, and leader.
“I am Nulene Neem, I'll be your liaison and will be here to help you understand our rules, and culture.” The Krylorian said, she was 5'8” with light pink skin, short black hair in a bob cut with purple metallic highlights in her hair, and purple eyes. She had a rectangular figure, and stood with one hand on her hip. A playful smile on her face.
“Respectful greetings unto you, Lord Dey, and Lady Neem. I am Lash Jormungandson, god of monsters.” Lash replied to them and bowed to each in turn. Rhomann looked a little perplexed at Lash's title but didn't say anything. Neem smiled at being called a Lady, and flipped her hair a bit.
“Please come this way, Nova-Prime has a mission for you.” Rhomman said, as he gestured for Lash to follow him. Nulene came to Lash side and took up his same pace.
Lash looked around the city and found it to be a delight on his eyes. A vast ocean of crystal light blue water stretched out as far as the I could see. While the beaches were filled with white sand. Creatures swam in the water, but kept from the beach thanks to a net. While children, and adults played on the beach. The city itself was very well designed. Smaller buildings along the outside, while taller buildings inside. Allowing for a gradual build up, and an obstructed view of the ocean beyond.
The architecture was full of geometric shapes. Pyramids, squares, and spheres. Though each building had several different alien cultures writing, and art carved into them in array of color, and individualization. Nature, and civilization came together almost naturally. Air traffic was kept to a minimal. Lash was taken to a private military air transport that looked like a rectangular metal box with soft edges. Rhomann took the driver position while Neem sat on a couch next to Lash.
Lash's Science Intuition activated as he looked over the transport and gained experience. Xandarian air transport design....30%.....60%....100%.....
Congratulations User, you have learned the Nova Empire air transport design.
Zero DP is required to record this design.
Lash sent his Virtual Intelligence tech-spirits out into the city to gather information. His world point background allowed him some information but not enough for his needs. The tech-spirits slipped past their firewalls with ease and started to look around. With Parallel Minds activated Lash started to look through the information as he continued to play the part of the alien stranger from another galaxy, dimension, and reality. Neem seemed pleased as he continued to look around. Clearly happy that the Asgardian was impressed with their home.
“How do you deal with the tectonic instability with your artificial landmass? Oh! I see you specifically built it away from the fault line. Then you use storm generators to collect the natural abundant energy from the different storms on the planet. Very efficient! Clean, renewable energy.” Lash said, as he went through several rhetorical questions.
“Have you considered using a storm anchor to steer, and or limit the different storms that roll over the capitol?” Lash asked Lady Neem who looked at him in confusion.
Lash was looking through the data base that was something they couldn't control. Once a year a massive storm would roll over the capitol. They had shield that protected the capitol from the worst of it. But every year a category 6 hurricane came rolling through. Lash had the Atlantean storm generator design. He could limit that storm down to category 4. He produced a holographic design and created a simple video. Neem leaned in looking at the video. She wasn't a scientist but the idea seemed sound.
“So this device would limit the storms level of strength? Does it require water to operate?” Neem pointed out a simple flaw. Yes, used a hard water energy generator. But that could easily be swapped out for something else.
“It does, but the power supply can be changed out. But with the design, and several of them in place you could turn a massive storm like you have on D-023. Take it down to a level 5 storm.” Lash said, as he applied the design to a planet in their empire that they were having trouble colonizing due to the atmospheric storm.
“That...That would be amazing!” Neem said as she looked over the design.
“Lady Neem what is the information network for Nova Empire R&D? I'll send it over.” Lash said to her, and even Rhomann looked back at him in confusion.
“You are going to just give it to us?” Rhomann asked.
“Of course! Asgard has no use for such a tool. But clearly you do. It will be a gift between two powers for mutual benefits.” Lash said to them both. Rhomann didn't say anything went back to piloting the transport. Neem pulled up her own communicator and with in a few minutes Lash sent the design over.
Attention User! You've obtained an increase in Nova Empire reputation.
“The Nova Empire is aware of the use, and manipulation of Universal Energy is not?” Lash asked Lady Neem who froze like a deer in headlights. Then she opened and closed her mouth several times trying to come up with an answer.
“I'm afraid Nova Empire is not aware of how to used UE.” Neem said at last almost deflating at the idea that her people didn't know how to use it.
“Well that! That is something I'll have to discuss with Nova-Prime. But I believe a trade agreement of knowledge can be shared.” Lash said to her with a smile.
After thirty or so minutes they arrived at Nova Corps main facility. It was a giant cube sitting on its side. It was anchored in place by a pyramid, the cube sat in the middle of the pyramid. It looked a little unbalanced from the outside. If it tilted one way or another it looked like it would fall over. However, Lady Neem assured Lash it was perfectly balanced. Along with emergency struts that would come up out of the ground should the need arise.
Rhomann escorted Lash into the main viewing, and briefing chamber shared by several officers and Nova-Prime. Nova-Prime herself was a Xandarian, a 5'9” pale skinned humanoid with silver white hair styled back into an assorted ringlets. She wore a navy blue uniform, but while Rhomann, and Neem wore combat gear. Nova-Prime wore a state official attire with her rank displayed on her chest right above her heart. She held with practiced confidence, and the gaze of a leader that controlled a vast portion of a galaxy.
“Welcome Asgardian, Lash Jormungandson, I am Nova Prime Irani Rael. Welcome to Xandar, I've heard that you've already donated a storm generator of sorts. As well as you are willing to discuss a trade deal of knowledge about UE. I have to say, that was not the original reason I called for your help. But I won't deny that we are interested.” Nova Prime said with a smile as she gestured for him to take a seat.
Lash bowed from his waist, and took the offered seat before he spoke. “The generator, and the basic use of UE is of little importance to Asgard. As you are more than aware with the different cultures, and species with in the Nova Empire. Things that are common to one, are rare to another. Giving such things can only benefit us both as a people.” Lash said in a crystal smooth voice, his Administration skill activated and granted him experience.
“However, I do not believe that was why you called me here today? As the agreement we made with to ensure that Terra and/or C-53 is on the patrol rout of the Nova Corps.” Lash said, as he tried to steer the conversation to why he was called. Irani looked pained to be speaking of the subject but waved her hand a holographic image appeared above the table they shared.
It showed a Kree, specifically Ronan the Accuser. Along with a long list of things he had done since the peace treaty between Nova Empire, and Kree Empire were signed. Recently one of his allies a woman named Gamora had been captured on Xandar and taken to the Kyln. Lash clenched his jaw as he tried to scream out in panic. But the 4th wall engine prevented him from screaming. Thanks to Erik, Lash/Saurian knew where they were in the timeline. But wait, that didn't explain why Nova Prime had called him.
“I need context to your request, Nova Prime.” Lash asked, as he looked towards her.
“When the Nova Corps first met you it was centuries ago. Before my time. You were a talented tracker, and hunter. Even across the vastness of space could you track a scent. We want you to help us track down Ronan. All you have to do is find him. We'll do our best to arrest him, and judge him according to our laws.” Irani said to him, and Lash understood what they needed.
“Can you give me approximately ten minutes, you don't need to leave.” Lash stood up from the table and went to a cleared space in the viewing hall much to the confusion of everyone present. Then he used his long lost friend Cosmic Awareness... 80% of his total energy was consumed in the effort.
A divine golden light swallowed Lash as he stood in the room. Spell script written in dozens of dead alien dialects coiled around him. Intricate designs, and will-o-wisps of energy danced through the room. Where is Ronan the Accuser? He asked the cosmos around him. Heading for Xandar Prime. He got in response. The light show burst into starlight around him and he dropped to his knees as his energy was stripped from him. He was given a head ache so severe that if felt like an ice pick was digging around in his brain.
“Ronan the Accuser is heading for Xandar Prime as we speak. He has in his possession an infinity stone, specifically Power. He will be here in a few hours.” Lash said to the room.... A pin drop silence followed his oracle.
“Activate the long range sensor nets immediately!” Irani said as she jumped to her feet. The entire room went into action. Neem came to Lash side to help him stand confusion clear on her face.
“What was that?” She asked him.
“I asked the Universe where Ronan was, I got a reply.” Lash said with a smirk as he slowly stood up to look at a real time holographic display of a satellite feed. A FTL jump point was seen. The Dark Astar a three mile wide Kree Accuser warship jumped into the edge of the system and quickly dispatched the satellite. Oddly enough no alarm went off.
“Ma'am! Early warning systems are down! We don't know why.” An officer shouted at Irani who paled at the sight of the Dark Astar.
“Call the entire Nova Corps! Evacuate the city!” Irani shouted, and she began to give orders left and right in quick succession.
“Rhomann, you have a message on your data pad.” Lash said to him, Rhomann looked over in confusion but pulled out his communicator. He read through it and raised an eye brow at the message.
Rhomann delivered the message from Peter Quill to Nova Prime. Apparently a faction of Ravagers were coming to aid Xandar in their time of need. They pulled up a satellite and saw a fleet of ships in bound in a direct path between the Dark Aster as it began to push towards the planet. Holy crap! They zipped through the entire system in a few minutes! It took a Martian ship several hours to travel from Mars to Earth back home.
“Lady Neem what kind of orbital defenses does Xandar have?” Lash asked her hoping for dozens of defense platforms. Land based cannons capable of shooting into the outer atmosphere?
“We...don't have any.” Neem said with a contrite expression. What? How could they not have any defenses!?
“You don't have any anti air? Of any kind?” Lash said to her in astonishment.
What is wrong with the fucking MCU! First Asgard has no fleets capable of FTL! Then none of the realms they guard have any form of orbital defense! Now a huge galactic wide empire doesn't have any defensive platforms on their capitol? That is just lazy world building right there! That or its done specifically to make the Rift more difficult. Now that Lash thought about it, that actually made perfect sense. The lack of defenses would make the challenge harder. Then as if to answer his questions.
Attention User! A dynamic event has activated near you.
Objective: Defeat Ronan the Accuser.
Optional Objective: Help prevent the loss of life on Xandar.
Optional Objective: Help prevent the loss of life of the Ravagers.
Optional Objective: Try and keep all of, Guardians of the Galaxy alive.
Comment: Good luck!
“Well let's build some defenses!” Lash shouted loudly and sprinted out of the viewing room with Neem hot on his heels. Irani glanced at him then went back to watching the holographic image update in real time.
Hundreds of Nova Corps fighter craft were taking off from the city. While thousands more were flying from across the planet from their military bases. All the while a fleet of Ravager ships were stalling the Dark Aster. The Ravagers were an interstellar crime syndicate comprising of thieves, smugglers, criminals, bandits, mercenaries, bounty hunters and pirates. There are nearly one hundred factions of Ravagers around the galaxy. So, essentially pirates had come to save the day! Yay!
Thankfully Lash was not officially in combat so he pulled up his Dream Store catalog and looked for defensive platforms capable of firing off planet. Shooting down a variety of space junk, attack craft, and capitol ships. Thanks to his unique qualifications as a magitek creator he was able to find one that was reasonably priced at 300 DP. He quickly purchased the design and began building in the courtyard outside the main building.
Lash used Manifestation and called his Elites to his side. Then they used Crafting, Science, Science Intuition, Magic Intuition, Enchanting, Bending, Reality Warping, (Which had returned to normal with out the Aether), Eldritch Blast, Phantasm, Silence, Fabrication, Infinite Supply, Connectivity, Alteration, Compression Transformation, Virtual Intelligence, Gravitas, Enchanting Word, and Quality Enhancement.
The defensive platform was placed on a triangle platform that was raised up about fifty or so feet into the air. While the whole structure was about 100 feet from point to point, and 100 feet tall. The triangle was level with the ground, while its points acted as the supports for the structure. The rotating turret looked like a smaller triangle with an elongated barrel for its tip. The platform linked up with the Nova Corps main defense net and pointed its barrel towards the sky. The entire structure was very sleek, with pointed edges, and had the look of pure silver with intricate spell design along the edges. It was made primarily out of Nth metal, and Uru for the barrel.
The platform started to absorb ambient magical energy in the air, as well as absorb natural energy from the sun. The platform created three false images of itself to fool sensors, and visual pin point. While a spell of Silence was cast to muffle the sound. The barrel elongated further as it adjusted to cast a magic shot. Lash, and his Elites were channeling magical energy into the cannon to hurry its process up. They had an audience of Nova officers, and soldiers were looked at the platform that had been built in under two minutes.
High above in the clouds the Dark Aster was slowly making its way through the cloud line towards the city for landfall. The Ravagers were in a dog fight among the necrocraft of the Aster. While a team of Ravager ships were shooting through the backside of the Aster in an attempt to break into the ship and assassinate Ronan. While en route was a fleet of Nova Corps ships. The Dark Aster acted like a monster from many peoples nightmares. Nova Prime was clear that if the Aster should land, Ronan will use the power stone to eradicate all life on Xandar.
Then for a brief moment there was a brand new red star. This star was born on the very surface of Xandar as a ripple of energy ripped through the air straight towards the Aster. Every Nova Corps ship, and Ravager were told to immediately break away and get to cover! Get to cover now! The entire atmosphere shuddered in fear, as the clouds in the sky were pushed to the side. The vast amount of energy shot from the new red star went straight into the Aster and the entire ship was pushed! PUSHED back out of the atmosphere in a spin!
Every crew member aboard the ship was flung into the bulk heads of the ship including Ronan! The gravitational force from the spinning ship went from 1G to 5G's in under two seconds flat! The Dark Aster spun so fast, and was forced out of orbit so quickly that the entire ship broke in half! The main core of the ship struggled to right itself through emergency control systems. While the smaller half shattered into pieces that were scattered through out the system.
The Nova Corps, and the Ravagers were struck dumb by the scene. The Dark Aster eventually came to a stop just on the edge of the system. The ship itself was barely operating, and was on emergency life support. Only a few people were alive on the ship, the rest had been turned into paste at the extreme G's of the spin. While the damage on the planets surface was at a minimal. Every single piece of glass for a hundred miles in every direction had shattered! While the main kinetic force of the shot had been absorbed by the Vibranium metal and was currently being consumed to charge up another shot that wouldn't be needed!
Down at the platform the 10 Saurus Elites had been blasted into their base magical particles for standing right next to the platform. Lash had been catapulted through the air and had made a looney tune imprint of his body straight into Nova Corps main interior wall, yes interior wall! He had been shot through dozens of exterior walls to get to where he was currently. Thankfully his Reality Armor, True Body, and Blessing of Bast had activated. It blocked a single life threatening hit.
Lash briefly saw a flashing UI message stating he had completed the dynamic event in record time! Then he blacked out! Lash woke up later and thanks to his Clock he knew that two days had passed. He was currently sitting in what looked like a Xandar hospital bed, and medical wing. He still wore his Einherjar armor given it was magically sealed and needed either himself, or an Asgardian to remove. He did a systems check and found his body was intact.
Congratulations User! You've completed the dynamic event in record time!
Completion time was 9 minutes, and 32 seconds!
Objective: Defeat Ronan the Accuser. [+] Complete!
Optional Objective: Help prevent the loss of life on Xandar. [+] Zero deaths, Complete!
Optional Objective: Help prevent the loss of life of the Ravagers. [+] Zero deaths, Complete!
Optional Objective: Try and keep all of, Guardians of the Galaxy alive. [+] Zero deaths, Complete!
Comments: YOU FUCKING MONSTER!
Attention User! Your defensive platform turned into energy particles to prevent Xandar from learning its design.
Attention User! The Dream Engine Developers have confiscated the defensive platform you designed. They have refunded your Dream Points, and paid you an additional 500 DP for the design.
Well damn... Lash turned his head to look at a familiar face, Lady Neem was looking through a holo pad and squeaked in surprise when he looked at her. “Your awake! I have to notify Nova Prime!” Neem said as she sent a message out. With in a few minutes his hospital room was filled with physicians. Slowly Lash sat up in his bed and answered any questions he could after he had a tall glass of water.
Lash was being escorted under heavy guard to see Nova Prime. They said it was for his security. But he was under the impression they were afraid he was going to build some planet destroying device. Blame the dream store! Yes, he did put the Dark Elf black hole energy core for its main battery power. Yes, it was suppose to create a singularity to consume the ship. Lash had no idea why it catapulted the Aster out into the solar system instead. Maybe he had the math wrong?
He was frustrated he lost his Elites. He had learned as long as they didn't out right die. They would accumulate experience like any of his other spells. He was hoping maybe they would become their own people over time. Now all their experience would be reset when he made more of them. Maybe he could promote some Veterans into Elites, and just make more Warriors? He'd have to experiment.
The rebuilding of the city was well underway. No one had died! Zero! Yes, every piece of glass in every direction shattered from the vibration. But that was a small price to pay for zero causalities! No one cheered for him. Most people just looked at him in horror! Well he was use to that on Asgard. They took a air transport to the main capitol building with over a dozen fighter craft escorting the transport.
“Really? Are you that afraid of me?” Lash asked Neem who flinched at his question, and suddenly became incredibly interested in her nails.
They flew over where the platform had been? There was a perfect sphere shaped hole where the platform had been. Thanks to his tech-spirits he watched an old video of the platform being consumed by a mini black hole. Thankfully no one had been consumed by it, just the platform. But the energy readings were consistent with black holes. So they must have figured out he used one as the energy core. Shit! They were going to pull the patrol of Midgard? That was an assumption of course but with the amount of security he had. More than likely they were going to ask him to leave and never come back.
Lash was escorted back into the familiar viewing room he had originally visited. There standing was Irani, along with collection of officers including Rhomann. Rhomann gave him a smile and a nod while the rest of the room look at him with trepidation. What was not seen in clear view as the assorted of automated turrets hidden with in the walls ready to be activated at a moments notice. Lash bowed from his waist to Nova Prime and then waited for instruction. Irani gestured for him to take a seat at the briefing table. Then everyone else sat down.
“No one died right?” Lash asked as soon as everyone took a seat.
“No, thousands of injuries. But no permanent harm came to anyone. Including the Ravagers that came to assist us. We've already compensated the Ravagers and the group with Mr Quill.” Irani said softly, and a few of the officers nodded in agreement.
“Do you recover the power stone?” Lash asked, and Irani stiffened.
“We did...” She said, as she kept her back straight and squared her shoulders.
“Good, the Nova Corps are a respected, and responsible group the power stone will be safe with you.” Lash said, and an almost invisible weight was lifted off the officials shoulders.
“Wait, did you assume I wanted the stone?” Lash asked, clearly surprised by the actions of the Nova Corps.
“In truth we were not sure what you wanted as payment.” Irani said with a small smile.
“There is no reason for payment. We are allies are we not?” Lash asked, he had done what he did because of the dynamic event. But also because if Xandar burned it would cripple the Nova Empire.
“We are allies! We are fully prepared to ensure we place a fully manned, and equipped patrol fleet on C-53.” Irani said, and the holographic projector produced an entire fleet composition who's sole job was to patrol, and protect C-53 aka Terra and or Midgard.
“Nova Prime I think we are on two completely different pages. While I thank you for the improved patrol route I think everyone in this room is far more afraid of me than you use to be.” Lash said, speaking honestly.
“We were not aware that Asgard had such weapons at their disposal.” Irani admitted to him and there it was! “The defensive platform that you built in two minutes was recorded, and before we could prevent its dissemination the video of what it had done was broadcast through out the empire.” Irani finished.
Ohhhhhh! So they assume Asgard has weapons like that. Asgard in the galactic community as a whole is a respected military power. But not a political power. Simply because Asgard is. 1) hard to get to, given its practically in another dimension. 2) They keep to themselves, only guarding 9 realms. So Lash had accidentally created a reputation of, 'Don't fuck with Asgard.'
Odin, All Father would like to speak to you. You must return to Asgard. -Heimdall said to him through his Domain. Crap....
“As you know, C-53 is primarily filled with a primitive species of Terrans. However, recently they've exploded in technological advancement due to several brilliant scientists, but also because of an alien invasion by the race known as the Chitauri. The Chitauri work for the mad titan, Thanos.” Lash briefly told Irani the truth of why he wanted C-53 patrolled. That bit of information made the gears in her head start to spin.
“You should also be aware that Ronan was originally tasked by Thanos to retrieve the power stone. Which means that Thanos knows you have it here.” Lash continued, and the whole room went deathly still. Thanos was a terror across several galaxies. Ronan was a kitten compared to Thanos.
“Unfortunately I can't build the defensive platform for you. I built it before because of war time protocol. I am sure you can understand that?” Lash asked, and Irani nodded. “But if you intend to keep the stone on Xandar. I would encourage you to start building defenses now.” Lash said at last.
“You may even want to consider studying the stone. Preferably off planet, see if you can make tools based on its energy. Make it work for you.” Lash suggested to the room and the very thought of working with an infinity stone made others pause.
“We will certainly take that under advisement... Is everything alright, you seem to be in a hurry.” Irani asked.
“Yes, I've been recalled to Asgard. I was just recently messaged. If we have nothing else to discuss? I'll send the basic information on UE to your archive for the storm generator and speak to you again at a later timer?” Lash asked, and Irani was startled that Lash remembered their previous discussion.
“Of course! Thank you for coming, and thank you for protecting our home.” Irani stood, and with practice grace bowed from her waist. While the rest of the room saluted Lash.
Lash bowed in return and quickly went to the balcony of the viewing office. The Bifrost shot down from the sky and swallowed him. Flying through space, time, and dimension was always a treat. The Bifrost created a kaleidoscope of color, images, and...Actually it reminded Lash of traveling through a Rift. Funny that! Eventually he found himself once more at the Gate House, and Heimdall's home. Lash looked up at his friend who looked at him with a bemused expression. Standing next to him was Sif.
“How much trouble am I in?” Lash asked them both. Sif looked at him with a conflicted expression. She was happy to see him, but she looked like she was struggling not to laugh?
“Trouble is not the word to describe what you are in.” Sif said as she came to give him a hug.
“For the first time in centuries the scavengers, and marauders that plague the 9 realms are...Offering tribute to Asgard. Asking, no...Begging us not to attack them.” Heimdall said to Lash. Lash didn't know if he should laugh or cry!
It had only been two days! Sif pulled him along and informed him of what had happened. The video had been sent out across the Andromeda galaxy. Then was intercepted by other more powerful forces who now covet the technology. The defensive platform was compact for how much damage it did. It had been built in under ten minutes. But when they found out that the technology didn't come from Xandar. But it in fact came from an Asgard. It put Asgard back on the map, and not in the best possible way.
There are now marauders staying as far away as possible from the 9 realms. While other more mysterious and powerful entities are poking at the 9 realms looking for the defensive platform in question. Odin is struggling to decide on whether he should ask Lash to build them across the 9 realms? Or not, but tell these powerful people that the realms are covered in them! So, Lash's exile has been temporarily suspended so he can come back and discuss the future with Odin.
“What do you think he would say if I told him it had actually been a mistake? It was suppose to create a mini black hole and consume the ship. Not catapult it out of the atmosphere and send it across the system.” Lash told Sif who stared at him in shock.
“That is even more terrifying, Lash! That a mistake caused that much damage! But the actual effect was meant to create a portable black hole!” Sif said to him, than clapped him on the back with a laugh. Big bad weapons always put Sif in a good mood!
They reached the end of the rainbow bridge and took a skiff towards the golden palace. He informed Sif that Xandar had the infinity stone of power. This was the third stone to show up in less than three years. The infinity stones had been in myth and legend for thousands of years. Now they were popping up all over the place? Something was happening, and it was happening soon. Sif begrudgingly agreed and said she would look into it.
“Sif what's wrong?” Lash asked her, thanks to his Deductive Reasoning he could read her body language. Despite her smile, and jovial attitude about Lash's accidental BFG (BIG FUCKING GUN). She was.... depressed.
“Thor has asked Odin for permission to marry Jane Foster. Odin has agreed.” Sif said, she clenched her hands into fists and looked away.
Crap, Lash had been happy for Thor and Jane when they announced their engagement. Now even Odin allowed their relationship. Lash understood why Odin agreed. If he had said no, Thor would have done it anyway and simply refused to come home. Even with Jane being optimized she would only live to be maybe 250 or so years old? To Asgardians that is nothing! But that would be 250 years of torture for Sif. The Marvel Cinematic Universe was vastly different compared to the comics. While Lash's version was gradually moving off the rails at a steady pace. He didn't really know what to expect.
Lash, and Sif were called into the main chamber hall and they walked through the golden halls towards Odin's throne. The All Father sat on the golden throne looking just as regal, and grumpy as ever. While his Queen Frigga sat on his left side with an amused expression on her face. Lash went to a single knee as did Sif bowing their head in respect and awaited to be called on.
“I send you to Midgard to stay out of trouble! I agree to the idea of allowing the Nova Empire to patrol Midgard in an effort to help protect the realm. Then you go and make a weapon of untold power in defense for Xandar it self. Now, I come to learn that the weapon you created malfunctioned and the true ability of it is far greater than what we had seen!? What am to do with you, Lash!” Odin said, his voice growing louder, and louder with each word. But despite his voice echoing through the halls he wasn't truly angry.
“Thankfully we have a mission for you, and Sif! It will take you to Midgard. Lorelei the sorceress escaped the prison during the Dark Elf attack. We had thought she was still on Asgard hiding away. But Queen Frigga was able to locate her on Midgard. The both of you will be tasked with finding her, and bringing her back to Asgard. If she resists you have my permission to end her life!” Odin declared to both Lash, and Sif!
Wait? Lorelei? Lash had assumed he missed that little mission according to Erik it had happened before the fall of SHIELD. Maybe it was Dawn throwing him a bone to get him back to Midgard? Or...Wait what was Lorelei's powers again? Oh no!
“Lorelei has an enchantment, more specifically she can enthrall men of all types with her voice. But certain men can fight the spell, but are still subdued by her touch. We have crafted a magical collar that will silence Lorelei, and disenchant any who were under her spell while she wears the collar.” Queen Frigga said and motioned to a witch of the sacred sun and moon who gave the collar to Sif.
“Lash you are being sent as support for Lady Sif. You have prior experience with Lorelei being the only man aside from Odin to be immune to her voice, and touch.” Queen Frigga said to Lash, and Lash was reminded by his world point background that yes, that did happen several centuries ago.
It was how Sif, and Lash had become friends! Lorelei had used her powers to manipulate and enslaved thousands of men from across the 9 realms. Including Haldor, Sif's lover at the time. Lorelei compelled Haldor to attack Sif while she tried to escape aboard a ship. Sif, and Haldor had fought and unfortunately Sif had to kill her once lover. Lash had tracked Lorelei to her ship and prevented her escape. Much to Lorelei's surprise Lash was immune to her abilities. (Eldritch Mind) He brought her before Sif who she beat Lorelei with in an inch of her life. But duty won the day and she brought Lorelei back to the golden palace for judgment. Where Lorelei spent the past few centuries in a Asgardian prison cell. Since that day Sif swore to Lash that she would always be his friend, and ally.
The Bifrost shot down at Lorelei's last known location. Death Valley, California. Lash, and Lady Sif stood in the burned remains of the celtic knot that the Bifrost left behind. Lorelei had been on Midgard for nearly a week. Thanks to spell craft, Heimdall could not locate her. Midgard was a chaotic mess in it self so Heimdall could not locate any specific catastrophe over another. So, Lash used Connectivity and linked up with a SHIELD satellite and called for help.
Lash linked up with SHIELD, and used CCTV camera's spread through the area. More specifically cities. They were not far from Las Vegas and thanks to Erik's whispering Lash prioritized the city. All the while Sif stood by his side watching him work. Lash was in his default Asgardian form. Sitting on the ground in Meditation. Sif was trying her best not to be impatient. She knew Lash was working, and searching for their query. But Sif did not do well standing around with nothing to do.
Soon a dust storm picked up from seemingly out of no where! Sif looked up and saw a primitive land transport reveal itself from the sky with the SHIELD logo imprinted on its wings. The plane it was called landed near them and the back cargo bay opened. Phil, son of Cole walked out with a smile on his face that was soon returned by Sif.
“Son of Cole! Good to see you again!” Sif said as she came to give him a warrior's hand shake.
“Your Ladyship, welcome to Midgard. I wish it was under better circumstances.” Phil said to her, and looked at Lash who stood up and was walking over to greet them.
“She's in Las Vegas!” Lash said to Sif, and then Phil who nodded.
“Come on, we can be in the city in under an hour if we hurry!” Phil said and pulled them into the plane. The cargo hatched sealed and the Bus was in flight momentarily.
The Bus had gone through some renovations since Lash was last aboard. It still had it's home touches in the common area above. But a lot of new toys were in the lab, and armory. Along with the rest of the engines. Lash could practically see the love and care that went into it. Repulsor engines had replaced the old jet engines. Optical camouflage covered the Bus from sight. While the entire plane moved quicker, and ran silent towards an Air Force base.
Agent May was piloting, while Agent Ward, and Agent Sky came to greet the two Asgardians. Sky or more to say Daisy Johnson aka Quake gave Lash a big hug. While Ward gave him a warrior's handshake. Lash introduced the two of them to Lady Sif, Asgardian god of War. Then they came to meet Fitz-Simmons who had finally admitted their feelings for one another though were still incredibly shy about showing it publicly.
“So, whats the operation?” Ward asked once the plane was en route and Agent May came to join them.
“Lorelei a Sorceress capable of enthralling any man she meets with her voice, and if need be her touch.” Sif said to them.
“Only men?” May asked clearly confused about the ability.
“Yes, men share an inherit weakness to her that we as women do not share.” Sif said, and smiled at May, Daisy, and Simmons who laughed at the idea. While Ward, Fitz, and Phil rolled their eyes. While Lash nodded in agreement.
“Wait even Lash?” Daisy asked, in an attempt to tease him.
“No, oddly enough Lash is one of the few men aside from the All Father that is immune to Lorelei.” Sif said, her voice laced with appreciation towards him.
“Why is that? Do we know?” Fitz asked, the scientist in him asking the questions more than his pride as a man.
“I believe it has to do with my Domain, as god of Monsters I have a vastly different physiology then most men. We know that Lorelei's abilities have no affect on animals of any kind. Even dormant my own unique self was immune.” Lash offered an explanation that may help appease the situation. Sif leaned back in thought and nodded in acceptance.
“That would explain why, yes.” Sif agreed.
“So that would mean you are both Asgardian, and an animal?” Simmons asked, her scientific brain switching on much like Fitz was.
“Domains are an interesting concept for Midgardians. Example would be Lady Sif, her Domain is War. Sif inherently knows how to use every kind of weapon she touches as if she has practiced with it for more than 10,000 hours.” (The human definition of mastering a skill) Lash said to them, and they looked at Sif for confirmation who agreed.
“Any weapon?” May asked again.
“As long as it can be held in my hands, yes.” Sif replied, and May thought about that for a moment. Clearly picturing the advantages that came with that.
“While my own Domain of monsters allows me to have not only a unique understanding of all creatures. But having the ability to mimic them. That is where many of my abilities come from. If a creature exists with in the 9 realms with a unique ability. I can mimic it!” Lash said to them, in an effort to explain why had so many abilities. For his world point background this was completely true. Though technically it was also a lie.
“So your ability to help revive the recently dead? That comes from a creature?” Phil asked, clearly interested in learning more about how he was brought back.
“Yes, there is a shadow creature who resides in Niffleheim who takes great joy in killing, and reviving their prey over, and over again. Until their soul is turned into a wailing mass. Then they devour it.” Lash said, painting a horrible picture for them all.
“That is where you get the revival ability from?” Phil asked, clearly horrified.
“Ahahaha! By Asgard no! Son of Cole! I get it from the phoenix who is capable of rebirth and healing!” Lash said, and clapped him on the back trying to comfort him. Everyone in the room was confused, even Sif. None of them entirely believing him.
“Anyways, I can create charms to allow your agents to resist her voice. However I must encourage any and all men of Midgard not to touch her. Her enthrallment is practically absolute in that case.” Lash said to the room.
“We should call in back up, specifically an all female tactical team.” May suggested, and Phil agreed.
Just as promised with in an hour the Bus landed at Nellis Air Force Base. While several SHIELD tactical teams were en route. SHIELD logistical and IT people were looking through Las Vegas camera systems working together with Lash's tech-spirits. Lash had seen Lorelei ride into the city on the back of a motorcycle. A biker was driving, and leading what looked like a motorcycle gang into town. Then they had lost track of her. Vegas was a big place, full of powerful, and easily enslaved men.
Lash sat in the Bus common area with dozens of holographic windows open, and revolving around him. They were of course for anyone else looking in. While he had his eyes closed working through Connectivity. Hundreds of spell script danced around him. He had indulged Simmons request and she had set up several scanning devices. She was interested in universal energy. Then came along Agent Daisy Johnson.
Daisy (Sky) was wearing SHIELD issued black boots, form fitting black pants, and a tank top. She was on her way downstairs to do some workout with her SO, and boyfriend Ward. She came to stop at the edge of the holographic ring of windows and clearly had a question on her mind. Lash opened his eyes and looked at her with a smile.
“You have a question?” Lash asked her, and she tried to play it off as if it was not a big deal. Scratching the back of her head and looking at one of the windows.
“Jiaying, my mother wanted to know if you could help the Inhumans in afterlife locate the rest of us. She said with your abilities it should be easy?” Daisy asked, the last bit came out in a hesitant voice.
“Yes, that should be easy enough.” Lash said with a smile. He pushed through one of the assigned satellites he was tied to and contacted the Inhumans in afterlife.
“Great! Hay...I know your busy but why don't you come down stairs for a bit and spar with us? Sif is down there with May.” Daisy suggested, and Lash raised a brow at her. The sight of Sif fighting May would be an interesting fight.
“I'd love to, Lady Daisy daughter of John.” Lash said and stood up in one smooth motion.
Daisy's smile was brilliant and lit up the room. One by one the holographic windows around the common area shut off. Lash turned off Simmons scanning devices and followed Daisy downstairs. They had opened up the cargo bay door and pushed the vehicles out. Letting them have floor mats out. Agent May was wearing form fitting black stretch pants, and a tank top. While she threw a punch at Lady Sif who wore her under armor. Sif's under armor was a stretch polymer that was a shirt, and pants. Daisy said they looked like yoga pants. Odd.
Agent Ward, and Fitz were standing off to the side watching the fight. Ward was talking to Fitz about the different moves being used and glanced at Daisy as she came down and walked up to his side. Lash followed in her wake but went to the other side of the mat to look at May. Lash flipped through his Magical Perceptions and found that May was using Partial Chi Manipulation. May did an spin flip kick that propelled her momentum forward. On a mortal that would have been a devastating attack. On Sif? She stepped into the attack and caught May half way through the kick and threw her into the ground with a resounding slam!
“Well done! But using such moves on an Asgardian will spell your doom. Use quick, exact movements that pull you in and out. We Asgardians tend to be slow.” Sif said as she offered a hand up towards May who took it gratefully.
“Why is that?” Daisy asked, and Sif looked to Ward who turned to explain.
“Every strike an Asgardian makes is a death blow. So every punch, every kick is meant to end the life of the one they are fighting. Slow is relative. Most would say Asgardians are naturally fast. However Agent May is well known for being quick.” Ward said to Daisy who looked to Sif, and May.
“That's right.” Sif agreed, and May looked slightly annoyed at herself for falling for that trap.
“Then why did...” Daisy let the question hang in the air.
“Because that move is meant to strike with the full kinetic force of Lady May's body weight. On a mortal that would have been a death blow or a serious injury. On us, not so much. But of course it is not often that you get a chance to spar with an Asgardian.” Lash explained for May who nodded in agreement.
“Lady May, you are using a basic form of Chi Manipulation. It is very rudimentary, did you not finish your training?” Lash asked, her and May looked back at him. Her face cool and indifferent but you could see the gears working.
“Chi mastery is not something I've been trained in. They didn't cover it in SHIELD operations academy. Or in any of my other martial arts trainers.” May admitted after a bit.
“You saw it as well, Lash? You should see if you can continue her training.” Sif suggested to May who looked at her in confusion. Sif then called Daisy into the ring with her, much to Daisy trepidation. May came to stand next to Lash.
“So, Chi Manipulation is one of the ways that mortals can find even ground with Asgardians. Among other kinds of beings across the 9 realms. If you like, Lady May. I can imprint Chi skills into your mind.” Lash suggested to her. May looked interested but wanted more of a description.
So over the course of the next hour Lash used his Skill/Power/Spell Trainer ability and explained what Chi Manipulation was to May. She understood the concept, especially as a trained martial artist using life energy is a well documented practice. By the end of the hour Lash and May were sitting cross legged on the deck of the plain knees touching one another. Lash placed his hands on her hands and channeled spell energy into her body. Then used Awaken Trait, and thanks to Power Trainer Lash was able to give her Chi Manipulation. He used Re:Implant to help regulate her new abilities until she had full control over it.
“Now, channel your energy and punch the target.” Lash said to May as he produced a psi plate for her to test on.
May focused her energy and her right fist glowed with red energy. She shot forward using her whole body and slammed her fist into the target. A thunderous crack rang out through the whole room! Sif, and Lash both had smiles on their faces as May left a sizable dent in plate! While Fitz-Simmons who were standing off to the side had their jaws open and their eyes wide. May had just done a 5,000 psi punch. When Simmons announced how hard May had just hit, May for all of her cold indifference smiled and had a star struck expression on her face.
“Oh my god! We have another superhero aboard the plane!” Daisy shouted in joy! May quickly schooled her expression. But a smile continued to tug on her lips.
“We found her! Tactical teams are in bound we leave in thirty.” Agent Phil came into the cargo bay and informed the group.
Freedom! Freedom to rule, freedom to command. This was the feeling that Lorelei had missed so much. The feel of sitting on a throne made of the finest silk this world could provide did much to help the stress of ruling for Lorelei. She leaned back in her chair as a man massaged her feet, while another massaged her neck, and shoulders.
Lorelei sat on in front of a large array of video screens. Midgard had advanced much since she was last here. Technology, culture, and food! She licked her fingers sensually much to the appreciation of the men around her. She had just finished with a chocolate covered strawberry and was reaching for another when the doors to her private suit opened up. A man wearing a tailored suit walked in and dropped to his knees, and touched his head to the ground waiting to be called on.
“You may speak.” Lorelei said, her voice enchanted with spell craft. Adding to the compulsion of those around her.
“Yes great queen! A task force of harmed women wearing the brand of SHIELD have taken the lobby of the casino. They are currently clearing the entire building of anyone not following your rule. What should we do?” The man asked, and Lorelei looked at him in mild confusion. Why would she be worried about this.
“Dispense our forces to disperse them. If they resist kill them.” She replied, and ate another strawberry.
“There is also a strange individual with them. They look to be wearing armor.” The man said, his voice quivering. Lorelei's eyes narrowed, she pointed at a television screen.
“Show me!” Lorelei said loudly, and an servant jumped to switch the channels. Lorelei jumped to her feet and snarled. “Sif! Send all of our men down to kill her! The man to bring me her head will earn one night in me bed!” Lorelei decreed and the entire room jumped into action and sprinted from the room.
“You stay! A Queen should always have a knight by her side.” Lorelei called out to a specific individual in the room who came to her side. Their heavy footfalls was overshadow only by the glowing triangle in their chest plate.
Lorelei had chosen to take up residence in the MGM Grand Hotel. She had obtained the best room in the entire hotel and all but commanded the entire staff. Men groveled at her feet, and any women who worked there continued to follow orders simply because they believed she was some kind of high roller. At least until a SHIELD tactical team showed up in force. Dozens of women fully geared in light weight exoskeleton armor. Fresh from R&D thanks to Lash's designs he had offered.
Sif had moved into the main lobby with the attack force and snarled in contempt as hundreds of men came rushing towards their position. Ranging from men here for their vacations, to the security staff! Thankfully the SHIELD tactical team all had ICER's available and were able to take them down in quick succession with out killing anyone. Then the men with weapons started to fire at them. It became a battle of attrition.
Lash was currently walking up the side of the building with Gravity Stride. He was on all fours so his passenger one Lady Melinda May would not fall off. Lash had used Transformation and his tendrils down his back had wrapped around her to keep her steady. May didn't say a word but Lash could tell she was uncomfortable. His tentacles alone were creepy to look at, while the hundreds of tendrils down Lash's back were just weird to watch let alone to be touching someone.
Lash, and May reached the upper most window. Right where Lorelei was staying, he used Material Shaping to turn the entire pane of glass into energy particles. He climbed in using his absent Stealth skill and carefully put May down. Thanks to Team Work, and Military Special Operations they moved in perfect sync and started to clear the room. Then they moved to the next one only to see their objective and her guest.
“Rhodey?” Lash asked, surprised to see War Machine standing in the room with Lorelei.
“Oh hay Lash! Whats up!” Rhodey said with a smile, his face plate was up so he could speak to them. Lorelei turned towards them and her face went absolutely livid!
“YOU! I will not go back! My knight kill him! This creature offends me!” Lorelei screamed at Lash.
“Oh that's to bad! I liked you Lash, but you heard the lady!” Rhodey said to him and his face plate came down. He raised his metal gauntlet into the air and then he went flying through the wall behind him. A fist imprint on his chest plate, left there by Lady May.
“What magic is this!” Lorelei yelled in fury as she reached up to back hand May. Lash sprinted forward and tackled Lorelei! They both went through several walls, and at last a metal door that left them falling down a very long elevator shaft.
“You monster! You will not take me back!” Lorelei shouted at Lash and punched him square in the jaw. His head snapped to the side with a crack!
“Odin has tasked us to bring you back, but if you resist we have his permission to end your life!” Lash said with a grin and raked his claws through Lorelei's tender flesh resulting in her screams!
Another armored figure came bursting through the wall and tackled Lash about half way through the hotel. They rolled several times, then the gold, and red metallic figure shot into the air and used their repulsor energy shot into Lash's chest sending him flying back. Lash rolled with the attack and jumped to his feet to see Iron Man floating in the air. Why was Tony here!?
“Tony, why are you in Vegas?” Lash asked his...friend?
“Tech convention! One of the medical beds you designed is here. Then we met Lorelei. Wow! I thought Pepper was beautiful but Lorelei is perfect! Why are all Asgardians so good looking?” Tony said with a bit of snark then bolted forward raising his fist up to strike Lash.
Lash whipped his tail around and catapulted Iron Man through several walls, and straight outside with a cacophony of sound. Lash reached out to JARVIS looking for an explanation. As soon as his Connectivity linked up JARVIS practically collided with him over the connection. He sounded exhausted, and harried to say the least.
“Mr Lash thank you for contacting me! I've been trying to access Mr Stark's armor but he's shut me out. He has a basic program helping him run the suit. He's rigged his suit to self destruct if I try and shut it down.” JARVIS said over the link they shared.
“JARVIS who else is here?” Lash asked as he ran back to the elevator shaft. If they could kill Lorelei the spell would end. Of course she was no longer in the elevator shaft.
“Mr Stark, Mr Rhodes, Mr Rogers, and Dr Banner have all fallen under her control. While Miss Carter, and Miss Potts was detained. I can guide you to them if you like?” JARVIS asked.... “BEHIND YOU!” JARVIS called and Lash turned just in time to see a giant green fist slam into his face. Crushing his skull and sending him flying through another set of walls.
Lash's health dropped by 35% with a single hit. He crashed through a wall and went flying through the air into the open sky of Las Vegas. He cast Nature's Kiss and felt his skull snap back into place. Then he cast Acceleration and flipped through the air finding purchase against a wall he cracked on impact and stood there with Gravity Stride. Coming out of the wall was the great big green machine Hulk!
“Hulk is sorry! But no hurt Lorelei!” Hulk called out and jumped towards Lash.
Lash cast Portal Creation and a vortex of darkness, and starlight warped into existence right in front of Hulk. He roared in rage and was pulled in. He went straight to Norway! Several miles up in the air. The same location that he, and Thor arrived in when he first came to Midgard so many months ago! Then he did something he had been putting of for a while but decided it was time. He used Temporary Pack Bond and linked up with every 'friendly' individual he knew.
Despite trying to kill Lash, Tony, Rhodey, and Rogers were still marked as friendly. They of course dropped what ever they were doing and started to scream in pure terror as Eldritch Mind started to clean up what ever spell effect Lorelei had used on them. Lash watched War Machine drop from the sky mid flight towards him. Lash reached out with Telekinesis and snagged him before he hit the ground. Lash jumped off the building and used his sub-ability of Telekinesis and flew off with War Machine in hand. It was not the quickest way. At his current evolution he could travel at about 30 mph.
“JARVIS find Lorelei! If she dies the enchantment ends!” Lash called out and dropped War Machine off in one of the pools around the hotel. Rhodey was thrashing, and screaming about the whispers.
Respectful greetings unto you all, this is Lash. We are currently temporarily linked for easy communication. Does anyone have eyes on Lorelei? -Lash asked across the link and got a staccato of white noise as dozens of people tried to talk through the link at the same time. Bleh...Mundanes!
“Lash? I...I don't know why I just heard you in my head. But Lorelei has been spotted running toward the east parking garage.” Daisy said across their communication ear bud...Oh, that was right Lash forgot he had one in his ear. Oops!
Moving to intercept! -Sif said across the link, Lash could feel her running through the hotel.
“Sir! On your four o'clock! Mr Stark has muted your ability!” JARVIS called out and Lash turned in time to get a red focused laser through his armor, and about three inches into his scales, and muscles.
Iron Man flew over and ejected his mag. Then popped every known weapon on his suit open and fired straight into Lash. Who held up his hand and cast Personal Time. The entire world seem to freeze, and Lash could interact with a 60 ft sphere of the frozen world. So he reached out with Machine Control and cast Deflection. He pulled down Personal Time and all of Iron Man's smart weapons went flying anywhere but at Lash. While any straight weapon went crashing into the ground. Lash tried to use Machine Control on the suit but it was to advanced for his current evolution. Good to know!
“Fight it Stark! She is manipulating you!” Lash shouted at him and jumped into the air to tackle the man out of the air. Tony didn't even pause and punched Lash square in the face. Lash reached out with his tentacles and started to constrict around him.
“WHY ARE YOU TRYING TO MESS UP A GOOD THING! I LOVE HER MAN!” Tony yelled over what appeared to be AC/DC that was playing through his suit. He was drowning out Eldritch Mind with rock and roll!? Ah!
Tony slammed them both into the ground then shot down the strip with Lash on the bottom. Tony was trying to scrape him off. Unfortunately for Tony, Lash was tougher then concrete or cars for that matter. His life was barely dropping by half a % during the whole trip. Then the whole suit went limp in as they slowed to a stop. Lash had ripped out the power core, it was a dead suit. He pulled himself free and cast Manifestation and called two Veterans to guard Tony. While he sprinted towards the garage.
Lash didn't have time to be nice about it and simply crashed straight through a concrete wall. Bursting out of the other side scattering debris as he dropped to all fours and ran straight towards a fight between Lorelei and Sif. Sif was doing pretty even with a dozen or so armed guards shooting at her. Lash used Darkness Manipulation and serrated edged blades burst from the shadows of the parking garage to slice through the guards. No kill shots, but they wouldn't be using their hands any time soon. While several more blades went through their feet to keep them from interfering with the fight.
“I will not go back!” Lorelei screamed at Sif as she threw a car door at her. Sif easily bisected the door and started to stalk towards her.
“I have no intention of taking you back!” Sif said, venom dripping from her voice. Lorelei had been on Sif's very short list for centuries. Now she had no reason to hold back!
Lorelei seem to come to the same conclusion and a look of panic spread across her face. She looked around the garage and called to her enslaved men where struggled against the blades of darkness but could not move. She turned towards Lash who was gradually making his way towards her, and a sinister smirk on his face. She screamed for help! Lash could feel the power of the spell spreading. But a SHIELD unit was keeping every man at bay.
“I SURRENDER!” Lorelei screamed and fell to her knees. Sif stopped, a look of pure fury on her face. Sif was caught between what she wanted to do, and what she should do. Killing a prisoner who had surrendered was a great dishonor. She turned to look at Lash, lost on what to do next.
“I refuse...” Lash said, and Lorelei paled. Her screamed died in her throat as dozens of blades of shadow burst from the ground. She became a pin cushion, so much damage was beyond even an Asgardian ability to heal. Though Lash technically could heal the damage he wouldn't.
“The collar was damaged in battle. Her threat was to great to the people of Midgard.” Lash said as he slowly walked towards Sif with his hands up. Sif blinked in surprise and looked down at the collar on her belt. Sure enough it had been sliced in half by a blade of some kind...
“With out the collar the men under her spell would never stop fighting. Yes, it had to be done.” Sif said to Lash and a weight that had been pushing down on her was lifted. She let out a shuddering breath and fell to her knees. Tears started to fall from her eyes and she whispered Haldor's name.
Lash walked over and knelt by her side. He created a baffle field to hide them both from sight. Sif reached out and pulled him close. Sif was a warrior born, true to her feelings as always. She pushed into Lash's chest and started to cry. The woman responsible for claiming the life of Sif's love so long ago was dead. Killed by one of her true friends in the world. That didn't make it hurt any less.
Hulk/Banner was about half way through the North Sea when the spell ended. A SHIELD naval ship picked him up much to the embarrassment of the big green guy. Rhodey was fine, though he was terrified to look at Lash for any amount of time. He would need some time to get over the side effects of Eldritch Mind. Steve for the most part had actually been knocked unconscious by Agent Carter. How she pulled that off she wouldn't say. Tony repeatedly apologized to Pepper who was using the whole fiasco as a way to get Tony to do what ever she wanted.
Obviously it had been explained that Lorelei was capable of mind manipulation. Every one hurt in the battle was healed. While the body of Lorelei had turned to dust at the hands of Lash's spell craft. Sif was conflicted on where to go next. Odin had left no clear instruction for her. So, Sif decided to stay on Midgard for now and try and find some sort of refreshment from life. She did have to admit Midgard had changed drastically since she was last here several centuries ago.
Despite the weird incident the tech convention still took place. Lash joined Stark in explaining the devices crafted through Asgardian, and Midgard technology. Then Lash did something that he found that all women tend to enjoy, even Asgardians! He took Sif shopping! He invited all the women of SHIELD in attendance, and men if any were interested to come along. Thanks to HYDRA Lash had hundreds of millions of dollars to spend. Not to mention his own Money Storage abilities. Spa day! Oddly enough even Agent May came along.
Lash was currently sitting in a unbelievably soft white spa robe in his default Asgardian form. A young woman was currently giving him a pedicure. While he was speaking to Lady Pepper Potts about a scholarship program that Lash wanted to create. Lash was shocked to discover that education wasn't free on Midgard. He had wanted to change that immediately and even wanted to go to this White House that so many spoke of and make the king of America to change the law. Lady Potts assured him that wouldn't work.
“I still don't feel anything!” Sif said from the massage table from across the room. A very tall, muscular man was standing on her back attempting to drive the heel of his foot into her muscles.
“Oh let me!” Lash said with a laugh as he slowly stood up and thanked the young lady who was doing his feet. He walked over to Sif with a laugh as he swapped out his clothes with a simple spell. Much to the delight of everyone watching. Magic tricks were always fun to watch.
“Sif, you promised you would try and relax.” Lash said to his friend, and Sif grumbled something about these fools not being strong enough. Lash helped the big man down with an apologetic smile. Then Lash took up some oil and started to work on Sif.
Thankfully massage skills were part of his Sex skill so he knew exactly how, where, and when to press any portion of Sif's body. He used his Asgardian strength to really get a deep tissue massage into her back. He may have also used just a hit of Subliminal Seduction to elicit a better response from Sif. When she bit her own tongue to stop her from moaning Lash pulled back and bit and smiled.
“Better?” Lash asked.
“....I still barely feel anything...” Sif said in a quiet voice. “Please continue though, it feels good.” She said, declaring loudly for anyone to hear.
“Do you not have spa's on Asgard?” Lady Potts asked from her side of the room.
“No, Asgardian's ability to heal essentially remove any need for a 'spa day'. However, I feel after today Lady Sif may wish to correct that in the future. Isn't that right, Lady Sif?” Lash asked, and Sif let out a soft groan of appreciation as Lash found a particular knot. Lady Potts laughed and went back to enjoying her own pedicure.
Lash continued to work on Sif and did most of her whole body. Keeping to respectful boundaries of course given they were not alone in the room. Plus Lash was reasonably sure Sif would have broken his jaw if he got a little to far. Even if she would have enjoyed it. Eventually they moved to buy new clothing. Shoes, pants, skirts, dresses, tops, etc, etc, etc. Lash learned that Sif could conjure her armor just like Thor could if she wanted to. So anything she wore could if need be turn into Asgardian armor. Nifty!
To finish the night off they all went to a club on the strip. Thanks to Tony they got into the VIP section and had a huge section of the club to themselves. Sif was beside herself with the brilliant colors, music, and the very energy in the air that seemed like a tribal gathering of posturing, dancing, and revelry. Sif had chosen to wear three inch heels with spaghetti straps up her calf. A knee length red silk skirt, with red top that exposed her midriff. She had several golden bangles, and had curled her hair. She looked amazing! While Lash wore a simple black suit, with a white buttoned up top.
Pepper had decided to come along and wore a ankle long slim black dress, with a high neck that left her arms, and shoulders exposed. Her vibrant red hair was tied back into a simple pony tail, and she wore silver piercings in her earlobes. Tony was by her side in a tailored fit gray slacks, with egyptian cotton satin finish shirt, and a black vest. Rhodey was next to with black pants, a black polo shirt, and simple smile that did wonders for his face.
Peggy Carter chose to wear a familiar red lace dress. A little number she had worn for Steve back during the war. While Steve wore a full tailored suit that he looked amazing in. They were both dancing off to the side of the club, doing a slow dance despite the music of choice. Agent Phil, and Agent May were both talking off to the side. Phil wore a tailored black suit, with a bright red tie that he oddly looked good in. May wore a knee length silver sequin dress, with a pair of flats. She didn't do heels if she could help it.
Fitz-Simmons were sitting off to the side watching the lights, and listening to the music. Fitz was talking about the different displays while Simmons just watched him with a tiny smile on her face. Fitz wore a gray suit pants, and vest with no jacket. With a navy blue buttoned up shirt. While Simmons wore a knee length black skirt, and a sequin black tank top.
Down on the dance floor of the VIP lounge was Daisy, and Ward. Ward wore a tailored made black cocktail suit, while sky wore a short pink dress that went to mid thigh, and exposed her back. She he wore three inch naked toed heels and was clearly having more fun that Ward was as she danced around him like he was a pole. Well Ward was having fun, just didn't like the attention Sky was getting from other people. He was protective of his girl.
“May I have this dance?” Lash asked Sif, and the goddess of war looked like a deer caught in headlights. But she eventually blinked and stood up and came to Lash's side.
They moved to the VIP dance floor and Lash brought his hand to the small of her back and pulled her in. He raised his left hand up level with their shoulders, and his right hand stayed on her back. Sif mirrored his posture, and arm placement. A salsa remix song was starting to ramp up. Then with a push, and an activation of his Dance skill. Along with Skill Trainer Lash started to dance with Sif.
They twirled, and spun across the floor in a flurry of hands, and gestures. Sif kicked her leg out and spun while Lash lifted her up into the air then brought her down. Some would say that a dance was much akin to a battle. Lash raised a hand up and Sif went into a twirl then her back was pressed into Lash's chest. He leaned back, and she went with him. Then with whip of his hand on hers she spun back out and they were brought back together again. They danced hand in hand along the floor. Past several people. Lash heard Daisy cheering for them on the side.
Eventually the song came to an end and with out meaning to most of the VIP dance floor had become vacant so they could watch the two of them dance. Sif was breathless in a good way, her chest rose and fell with every exhalation. A smile was spread across her face as she pressed close against Lash who smiled back at her. He dipped her in graceful bow then pulled her up. They stood side to side and bowed to the cheering audience who clapped in glee.
Lash ended up dancing with every one else even Simmons, and May! May most off was a surprise she was an excellent dancer! Lash took pity on Fitz and gave him a Partial Dance imprint thanks to Skill Trainer. By the end of the night Fitz, and Simmons were dancing together with out stepping on each others shoes. Eventually the sun started to rise and many were exhausted. Tony being Tony had got the best rooms for everyone.
Lash was getting ready for bed when someone knocked on his door. He came to find Sif waiting at the other end still in her party dress. With out a word she stepped in, and Lash closed the door behind her. She stalked through the large hotel room and came to find the bar. She pulled open a very expensive bottle and guzzled it down in ten seconds flat that looked at the bottle.
“Are all Midgardian spirits so lacking?” Sif asked, clearly dissatisfied with the drink.
“I'm afraid so, but I can make you something.” Lash said as he gestured for her to sit down. He used Fabrication, and Alteration to create some strong alcohol for her. Sif took the drink with a welcomed smile and guzzled it. She pulled it back with a blushing red face and a huge grin.
“Now that is a drink! I think even Volstagg would enjoy!” Sif said with a smile, then raised her cup for another. Ten or so drinks later Sif was plastered, which said a lot for Lash's ability to make drinks.
“Thank you for helping me, Lash. Thank you for breaking the collar.” Sif said, understanding that it was one of Lash's shadow blades that had cut the collar.
“We are friends are we not?” Lash said with a grin that she returned. A few minutes later Sif was passed out on one of the guest bedrooms. While Lash turned away from Sif to find himself back in the black room with Dawn.
“That was not what I expected.” Dawn said to Lash with a grievous expression.
“Sorry.” Lash said as he came to sit next to her as he did before. “So, what's next?”