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  1. Ray nodded as Henry decided to step up and do the talking. He generally approved of the direction this was forming up on now. "If you want to do the talking now Henry, no skin off my nose. Before you didn't want to be seen at all. Spent a lot of years living off the street. a couple of points of advice. Take Voyd in with you, Voyd, find a nice enough dress and be Henry's girl. Do it right and no one will pay you much attention, won't measure you up as a threat. I have a couple of spots to get okay used clothing. Blood washed out nice, stab wounds repaired and all that. I am going to sit amongst the gang that likes to hang out at that bar, off to the side a bit and see what I can hear about their former gang leader. You know, the one we think snatched up that former superhero. I do think it would be a mistake to go in to bust heads. That bartender could make life easier as a source of information. You bust up his bar, he won't ever talk to you again. Just a thought. I am not going into this to be muscle Henry, I'm going in as a street guy. Low key, under the radar. Bowling shirt and jeans, in and out. I don't think many of that gang would respond well to me trying to bribe them. That notion would make me stick out like a sore thumb. I'll take one hundred dollars for my new used bowling shirt, jeans and a couple of drinks.
  2. Ray frowned at the direction the conversation was taking. " I'll talk to the bartender, Henry can back me up, hopefully making sure I don't do something really dumb. Remember, the Paradise lost gang likes to hang out there, so if something does go wrong, costumed backup would be appreciated. Henry and I will try and negotiate bout finding the Rat and maybe even checking on the former gang leader of the Paradise lost guys. Outside of that, try to keep your cool with each other. If we can't even have a strategy talk without losing it, we won't last long on the streets as a group. Henry can tell you that if you don't believe me."
  3. "Yes, two groups is fine, I should probably go on the inside I think... "
  4. Ray thinks for a moment. Civilian clothes won't be an issue for me, but what I've got isn't pretty. Maybe a chance to freshen up and wash those before we go. Otherwise, I'm good to go.
  5. Ray, who had been looking over the files again takes a moment to add another two cents worth. "Something bothers me about the retired hero. She had gone silent for months accord to the file. Out of the blue a distress signal is sent to Mistress Cordova ? Sorry, but it seems a bit like a trap. I think with the timeframe involved, I'd be worried about someone else sending that signal. As for dealing with the Heathens, First or last I suppose it doesn't matter that much to me. But we need to talk to the informant before investigating the retired hero in either case. "
  6. Ray takes his time reading the documents. "You both have good points. Here is my take. Mission two should go first, not because it is or isn't more important, but it will give us a chance to get to know how to better work together. But, I agree Henry that Mission one should be before mission three. I too saw that the same gang, Paradise Lost would be at that bar. Maybe we can get information on their former leader and what he is up to before trying to locate the retired hero. And Henry, you should probably take the lead talking to the bartender..."
  7. Ray once again found himself listening to his new comrades. His own life, especially the last decade or so was lived under terrible conditions. Food and comfort were rare. Trust was doled out sparingly. But, that being said, love and comforts could be found. They were rare. The colorful teleporter was a scientist. Raised in a different kind of life. They would have to look out for her. " Karen, it is a cold hearted place out there. Mercury is right about that part. But I don't think you'll have to kill. As a team, the theory is we look out for one another. I think the rest of us will do plenty of killing if this works out. At least in the beginning. I had a girl once, lived that awful life with me for about a year. One day, she just left, real sudden. I forced myself to forget her. She came into her powers before me. As an initiation, the gang she joined, Los Apocoliptos had her blast me with her new powers. I woke up about a week later with my new powers. She never looked back. I've been trying to make any damned Apocolipto punks pay ever since. Any way, I at least respect who you are, where you came from as long as you do the same for us. Funny thing is, like twilight zone funny, crazy old Doc Heller says she probably hit me just about when my own powers were ready to come out and the power she hit me with probably made me more powerful than I would have been otherwise. " Still sitting, Ray looks like he is thinking about his past when he stops talking. Remembering the brief time he was happy in his crappy life.
  8. As you might expect, Ray sat and listened to the briefing. From what he had heard, it seemed perfect for him. Room and board included. Ray though the whole deal was sweat. Then the boss came in. Sienna Cordova. She carried some terrible scars on her face. By her attitude, which seemed to be just shy of fierce, there were mental scars to match. Ray tried to compare his own experiences to hers and in his own mind came up short. What might have seemed like easy money at first certainly wasn't. They would all have to work hard for their lofty salary. The moment of quiet after she finished speaking made him think the others agreed.
  9. Not unlike some of the others, the money mentioned seemed to Ray a staggering figure. He didn't think he'd ever had that much money all at once. He'd have to get some cash to old Doc Heller. He still owed him for the snazzy tear resistant suit. It was hard to hold himself in, the excitement and prospect of having a superhero life, rather than some dude giving the gangs grief every night. His own room! He didn't have to search the local ruins for squat space any more. There were a couple of people at the homeless camps he'd like to pay back, taking him in and treating him like a human being at risk of angering the gangs. The old man who had taught him how to box those years ago, in the wreckage of the old gym the man used to own. Ray suddenly realized that he hadn't ever been as alone as he thought he was. He was going to make sure some of those people would have an easier time now. He hardly heard the others speaking in their own excitement.
  10. Ray looks at everyone as they talk. He seems to be considering what they say carefully. He does take Karens hand, grasping it gently and shaking it. "All right folks, remember to be patient with one another, I guess this is not in my comfort zone and maybe not for some of you either. Been in the worst parts of town all of my life, so this place and some of you seem really high class and fancy to me. Thanks for trying to make me feel welcome. " With that he quietly sits back down.
  11. Ray looked at the others with increasing discomfort. "Look, perhaps this isn't for me. I don't fly, I don't move particularly fast, and I'm not colorful. Not my style. Strong and tough is probably not enough " He gets up to leave slowly. " I wish you all good luck."
  12. Ray came into the building wondering what to expect. In some ways, he felt like he had finally hit it big time. High security building, an A.I. Fancy tech everywhere. He sat down at the fancy table and watched the two who had come before him. Flashy outfits, colored hair, fancy powers. He had doubts about fitting in. Still, he was here, might as well follow through and play nice. When the first two finished, he went ahead and started. His outfit look very clean, almost out of the box new "Hi there, I'm Ray. People on the street have started to call me El Machina. Strong, tough... I picked up this outfit from a guy I heard about who works out of an abandoned miniature golf place. I traded some stuff a couple of Acolitos were carrying. They weren't going to need any of it anymore. This all looks impossibly fancy to me. Spent all my years on the streets. There are still innocent people trying to live out there. I try and help them."
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