Dog Eat Dog
Martial Arts: superior (rank 2)
De Luca chuckled at the boy’s response, glancing at the three unconscious thugs who still adorned the sidewalk. “With the way you fight, kid, I don’t doubt it.”
Tony and his girlfriend, Sheila BangBang, took Bear in. It was far from the ideal suburban life of white picket fences that the boy had read about and that Sheila evidently hoped for, but to the teen, it was paradise.
De Luca was no father figure. Due to his line of work, taking in a street urchin would be bad for “appearances”. Behind closed doors, however, Tony did his best to set Bear straight on the dog-eat-dog world outside. “Street smarts,” he called it.
After seeing the way Bear had handled himself, it wasn’t a mystery that the boy was no stranger to fighting. He never related where he’d gotten the skills and Tony didn’t ask.
As such, he took up at the insistence of De Luca. His reasoning was threefold: it was a useful skill to have in the Bottoms, it helped to channel the boy’s rage into something productive, and finally… it kept the brat out of his hair.
Super Speed: standard (rank 1)
The woman looked over her shoulder once again, hoping with all her might that the man was no longer there… to no avail.
The hooded man, bathed in moonlight, had picked up the pace. She turned to the upcoming street corner, preparing to sprint if need be.
Her plan was instantly crushed as she turned to see several other figures emerge from around the corner, carrying switchblades and bludgeons.
“Well if it isn’t Mrs. Snitch…” the leader’s voice rang out. “Stupid enough to come back to the Bottoms after what you did?”
The woman began to explain herself, only to be cut off as she was backhanded, going to the ground in a heap.
The ringleader leaned over her, switchblade in hand. “Now I have to make an example of you…”
The blade sprung forth with a clicking noise before being raised high into the moonlight overhead…
A blur of brown. That’s all she saw as the man was struck from the side, being lifted forcibly off the ground and sent flying into a brick wall ten feet away. Even the other thugs were dumbfounded at the speed with which the figure had appeared.
Stubborn as a Grizzly
Iron Will: superior (rank 2)
On any other night, her savior would easily be confused with a homeless man or one of the very gang members he was currently opposing. The man was over six feet tall with an athletic frame hidden under a tattered brown duster. A dark green sock cap adorned his head.
Bear eyed the surrounding gang members, fixing each of them with a bestial glare. An impact smashed against the back of his head, and the sound of shattered glass filled his ears. One of the men behind him had thrown a beer bottle.
Even as blood poured out around the shards of broken glass embedded in his skin and down the back of his neck, Bear snarled and stepped forward, grabbing the thug by the collar of his shirt with blinding speed before hurling him through the windshield of an abandoned junker.
As he began to turn, a sharp, stabbing pain filled Bear’s torso. He glanced down to see a butterfly knife inserted at least an inch deep into his abdomen. The man who had put it there had backed away and was staring at the vigilante, waiting to watch him fall over or show pain.
He saw neither.
No Obstacle Too High
Leaping: standard (rank 1)
Another gang member, quicker than his comrades to shake free of the stupor, began to grab something from inside of his coat. At the first glint of metal, Bear took the only option available to him.
No obstacle is too high, John. Always remember that.
The voice from his childhood rang through his mind as he leaped, taking to the air in a blur of motion. By the time the man had finished pulling the pistol from his jacket, Bear was twenty feet above him… and coming down. The man never got a shot off as the vigilante landed on him, bones crunching under his weight and the sheer force of the landing.
The Quick and the Dead
Reaction Speed: standard (rank 1)
The gang member was taken care of, leaving only one. The cocking of a revolver’s hammer was the only stimulus Bear required to act. As soon as the metallic noise of the gun registered, the large man dropped, contorting his body against the ground milliseconds before the pistol discharged, sending a bullet skimming harmlessly over his head.
The vigilante leaped into action, quite literally. With the speed of a cheetah, he jumped from one spot to the next, covering dozens of feet at a time. The thug panicked, firing the rest of the rounds in the cylinder at the incoming form of Bear, but never once hitting pay dirt. His gun clicked on a spent cartridge just as the incoming fist slammed into his face, fracturing every bone in the left side of his face in a single blow. His head snapped violently to the side as he collapsed in a heap on the asphalt.
Bear stood, panting, as any still-conscious gang-bangers scrambled to flee. His head rotated to settle on the woman he’d saved.
He spoke for the first time in a low, neutral tone. “Are you hurt?”
As soon as the woman shook her head, he was gone.