A Typical Wednesday with Dwayne Taylor

Brief Title:
Conquering Conquistador

Characters:
Armand, Empath, Night Thrasher, and Conquistador & Nova

Scene Runner/Watcher:

IC Date:
06/06/12 17:04

Location:
Midtown - New York

Summary:
Empath hired Conquistador to take on Dwayne Taylor, which he does. But during a chat with Armand, Empath changes tactics. Conquistador is defeated

Social or Plot:

TS:
No

Log:
A limo is parked across the street and diagonally from the Ambrose Building, home of the Taylor Foundation. After yesterday’s run-in with the trickster god, Loki, Empath is feeling the need to work out some issues. However, ‘work out issues’ for him means to have someone else do his dirty work. Having been busy with personal and Hellfire Club business, he had forgotten his little investigation of Dwayne Taylor and why the young man is immune to Empath’s manipulations. Sensing that there is more to the young man than meet’s the eye, Empath can not go through his usual means of manipulation, given Dwayne’s status as a member of the Hellfire Club. So he goes through other means. The last incident with Warhawk proved nothing definitive, so Manuel has upped the ante and hired a fellow Spaniard.

Directly in front of the Ambrose building, at a magazine stand, stands an impressively handsome man, tall and attractive enough to receive glances from both men and women. The man peruses some periodical as he watches the building. Wearing a trenchcoat, the man pretends to read the magazine, a poorly chosen teen zine, as he observes the entrance and simply waits.

Why is Armand anywhere? Because he wanders that-a-way. Today he walks along some how in front of the Ambrose building, wearing a simple pair of jeans, his hoodie zip-up jacket and a black t-shirt, boots on his feet and his hair pulled back and tucked up into a black and green knit cap. He's quiet though, idly devouring a taco and chewing slowly as he just wanders along peacefully.

The work day is winding down in the upper eschelons of the Taylor Foundation. Dwayne made a rare appearance at the World HQ of the Foundation, much to the surprise of his employees. A collective sigh of relief could probably be heard downstairs when Dwayne decided to call it a day a bit earlier than most would have.

The main door of the building is opened up and Dwayne has a couple of people flanking him. The man and woman flanking Dwayne are dressed in business attire and are talking the young man's ear off. He finally waves them off, "Look; I'll be back tomorrow. We can discuss this tomorrow and proceed from there, alright?" His tone of voice is one that betrays a little annoyance. When they leave him be and go back inside, Dwayne starts off down the sidewalk.

When Dwayne exits the building, Manuel is alerted and then remains where he is watching from a small monitor in the limo. The other Spaniard nods and looks over as the two young business people with Mr. Taylor leave him. A grin curls on his face as he returns the teen zine to the vendor and begins walking in the direction behind Dwayne Taylor with a quick step. Removing his trenchcoat, he tosses it away from him, which by coincidence, it lands by Armand. Walking passed the well-follicled mutant, the Spaniard begins to walk with each step. His height increasing as he closes in on Dwayne. “Mr. Taylor?” His voice booms out as the man reaches about 8 feet tall.

Taylor continues to walk down the street, seemingly occupied by whatever is on the screen of his smart phone. Don't you just hate those business people sauntering down the street with their noses in their blackberries? Ugh! See? And this is what happens. People sneak up on you! Dwayne looks up from his smart phone and turns around to regard the source of his uttered name, "Hey, Jim, I told you tomorr-" Dwayne's words are cut short when he spies the eight foot tall individual that is definately not the suit-clad man he was speaking to when he left the Ambrose Building. Dwayne, taken off guard, asks, "Yeah?"

The Trenchcoat falling near his feet, Armand, turns slightly to holding up a finger to try to notify the person they dropped something but he lowers that hand quickly as the individual...grows. He just takes another bite of his taco, looking between the building and the tall man and back to the building and he sighs softly, kneeling down to carefully pick up the coat and drape it over his free arm as he turns to watch what's going on, finishing off his Taco with speed.

Ignoring Armand, the Conquistador continues growing in height as he stops shot of Dwayne Taylor. Speaking in with a strong Spanish accent, the green-costumed villain announces, “I only wanted to make sure it was you. Thank you for responding.” With that, now a good 9 feet tall, Conquistador moves his fist in an attempt to swing a punch across Dwayne’s face. The concrete of the street they stand out begins to rumble a bit as spikes pop up in a circular pattern around Conquistador and Dwayne.

Watching from the limo, a loud sigh of exasperation comes from Manuel as he spots Armand near what is occurring. He curses in Spanish as part of him wants to leave the kid there to get beatdown after yesterday’s runin with Loki, which he blame son Armand, though really was his own fault. But part of him wants to actually go grab the kid and take him away from the fight or call it off completely. He opens the limo door and starts to make his way towards Armand, he will not call off the fight. An annoyed expression is on his face as he is dressed in rather fancy and expensive garb.

Dwayne's eyes go wide at the growth of the individual who has approached him. He begins to shake his head and say something about not understanding, but is interrupted by the much larger man swinging a meaty fist at him. Instinct kicks in and Dwayne drops down into a kneel to avoid the reach of the larger fellow. The young man's eyes dart around him, noting the appearance of spikes coming from the rumbling ground. And Dwayne thought Mondays at the office were bad...

"What is this about?!" Dwayne demands as he shuffles backwards away from Conquistador as best he can.

“To be honest, money. It is always about money. But also the thrill of the fight. You move quick, sir.” The spike stick out from the ground surrounding the two and separating them from others who may feel the need to come to the aid of the business leader. Already passers-by and tourists are taking photos and people pull out their phones to record the fight. The Conquistador laughs as he flexes. The vain villain waves to some of the tourists and voyeurs.

(OOC Note: This conversation between Armand and Empath occurs while the fight is going on. Night Thrasher had to idle.)

Armand watches with something between horror and being resigned as he purses his lips and his expression darkens. He doesn't even see Manuel just yet as he shoves the rest of his taco into his mouth and chews slowly, taking a few steps forward but then there are spikes and he stomps his foot and sighs softly, craning his neck to continue watching.

Shaking his head and tsk tsking aloud, Manuel sighs, “Armand, why is it that there is always some sort of superhuman event going on around you? I swear I think it is in your power to somehow be connected to these events?” Manuel finally reaches Armand and looks to have a sour expression as he clearly remembers yesterday, though somehow skewed in his own mind.

Armand gives Manuel a wary look, adjusting his hold on the trenchcoat, draped over his other arm and he bows his head politely, blinking a few times. "...Monsieur." He greets cordially before taking a deep breath. "I ask myself the same question almost every day." He shudders and glances towards the fight before looking back to Manuel. "Are you well?"

“I am fine, though I now find most Asgardians to be immature brats. After what you said and after what I saw. . .I can see why people think the two of you have an odd connection.” Manuel quirks his brow as he looks towards the spikes which separate the them from the fight. “Have you seen Loki since yesterday?”

Armand's lips twist wryly as he arches an eyebrow and just regards Manuel quietly, sucking a bit of lettuce out of his back teeth before chewing a bit and swallowing. "It was not a connection purposefully formed or having to do with anyting really, he probably it just using me. He is still a snake." Then he blinks slowly. "Non, I have not...I don't usually plan or know when I see him."

“Well, you do have some sort of affection for him though. And I do not meet romantically. But there is something there that you feel for him.” Manuel grins, “I can tell these things. Despite yesterday’s little setback. I can clear you of that. Make it so that you do not feel for him and thus hopefully avoid contact with him, since it clearly leads to questionable situations.”

Armand moves a hand to his head reflexively and he loks a bit guarded. "Non, merci for the thought but I do not want...in my head, I do not want...twists and such. Please, it is...just non." He takes a deep breath. "It isn't right."

“Fair enough.” Manuel offers, “It is not in your head. There is a difference between telepathy and empathy. I do not read your mind or know your memories. I am much more subtle. In fact you would not even know.” He bows his head, “But I respect your wishes.” For now. Manuel can and may choose to do it whenever he likes, but be sure that the trickster god is not present.

Armand sighs softly and nods. "Aye, the mind and the heart, there are differences...but it still gives you a headache when you are stressed out. You have taught me that trust in someone such as you is...potentially dangerous. I would not even know if you have done anyting. And Monsieur, it frightens me." He shrugs helplessly. "But it matters not, you are still the same Monsieur you were before who offered me a place to attend school."

“That is true. I am a difficult one to ever really trust. You never really know who or what I am.” The most devilish of grins appears on Manuel’s face, “But it seems most of the company that you keep is that way. For what I am capable of doing seems to be a mere pittance to what Loki is capable of.” Manuel shrugs, “But you are right. It matters not and the school can help. I suggest you seek out the staff to discuss what has transpired with Loki. As you so, we have our own Asgardian on staff and another goddess. And mutants capable of so much.”

(OOC Note: Night Thrasher returns)

The young Chairman of the Taylor Foundation raises a hand to scratch at the back of his head, "Money and the thrill of the fight, huh? You know there's always Vegas... or even Atlantic City. Sign up to be in a boxing fight card, huh?" As Dwayne keeps a low center of gravity, he turns his head to look beyond the ring of spikes that this man created around them. He calls out to those sticking around to see and record what is happening, "All of you; Get out of here! Someone call the cops! Can't you see this man is dangerous?!" he turns his attention back to the gargantuan man, "That being said; Why single me out? Is it my money?"

"Mm, perhaps you are correct....and non, Loki has lots of power but even he can be defeated." Armand shrugs his shoulders. "I am not capable of that much, Monsieur Manuel...why would you want me to come to your school?" Then he gestures towards the fight. "I would like to call the police or assist this man, but would I be allowed to do so?"

“Well, you do have a lot of money. You are Taylor. Your business is named after you, is it not?” People continue to record the photo and take pictures, though all they can see are large giant spikes as they are obscured by the spikes. “Now enough talk. More fight.” Conquistador attempts another swing at Dwayne.

For his part, Manuel looks to Armand, “No. Do not call the police. It seems no one else is.” Though that is due to Empath exerting his emotional sway over them keeping them from doing so. “As for the school, you think you are not capable of much and yet look at the life you have led since coming on New York. Mutants and gods, literally gods. The school will offer you protection while also showing you how to live in a world filled with things greater than us.”

Dwayne ducks and rolls across the ruined sidewalk to avoid getting struck by his assailant. He grimaces and corrects the large man, "Named after my father; Not me." As if that really mattered at this point. Using this man's logic, he could have attacked Fisk or Stark or Stane or any number of other people. Dwayne raises his forgotten phone up and he glances down at it. Swift, nimble thumb taps against the screen are made before the device is slid into the pocket of his pants. He deftly removes the coat to his suit and tosses it aside, "So a big dude, huh? You rely on strength and size to get you what you want, don't you?" Dwayne asks this as he tries to keep as much distance between himself and the big guy as possible... which isn't much thanks to the spikes.
Armand takes a deep breath and bows his head for a moment. "I am having a job, oui. But I have switched to part-time in preparation for taking more time at the school." He admits. "But I can observe many tings, doesn't mean I can do much about it so I can accept that...." He just watches the fight warily.

“Well, you are a mutant. You think you are weak, but have you ever even tried to intervene? Right now, you could maybe do something, but choose not too. You think calling the police is your only act. Do you not think you could do something with your hair?” Manuel asks Armand curious to the young mutant’s response.%r%rConquistador misses with another swing, “You are fast, senor, but I can do more than just use my size and strength.” The concrete directly beneath Dwayne ‘s feet starts to crack a little bit not enough to fall through, but crack as hands are starting to form.

"...if I could having do something with my hair I would!" Armand insists before looking over towards the fight. "But he is too big! It would rip at my scalp." He pats his head. "But if it doesn't end I shall have to throw myself into the mess and risk myself eventually, it is what I can do." He shrugs his shoulder. "But it is what I always do."

Dwayne looks down at the rumbling of the concrete and the object forming out of the concrete. He purses his lips and mentally checks off; Size, Strength, Some sort of Geological/Inanimate Material Control. Dwayne gestures towards Conquistador, "Ah, fast enough, sure. Let's say I ran track in school, huh?" Dwayne doesn't move from the rumbling of the concrete beneath him, "You should think twice about doing what you're doing, big guy. Lots of utilities run under this street... you might rupture something!"

“So you are willing to risk yourself for others, but only when the time is right. What time would that be? Yes, the man is large and clearly has some sort of control over rock or something, but in general, when is the right time to leap into a fight? I unfortunately lack that knowledge.” Manuel quips semi-sarcastically.

Conquistador smiles, “Not too worry. I have control over what I can do.” The hands form from the ground and attempt to grab Dwayne and keep him in place.

Dwayne narrows his eyes as Conquistador blows off his warning. He grits his teeth and attempts to dives off the rumbling concrete hand beneath him. However, this time, young Taylor wasn't fast enough. He's grabbed by the foot by the concrete hand. This puts Dwayne in an awkward situation and position. Since he's caught, his jump to the side is aborted and Dwayne stumbles and catches himself on one leg. He tugs at his captured appendage, "You have total control of what you're doing? A stray fiber optic line or plumbing pipe beneath us isn't going to burst with this motion?"

"You have to...know..." Armand takes a few more steps closer to that spikey boundary, taking a deep breath as he looks around warily and he watches the two interact with a wariness. "You could help as well, Monsieur Feelings...but you choose not to I am sure..." Then he tugs off his knit cap, letting his hair fall down around his shoulders and he squints. "Ummm...PARDON! BIG SPANISH MAN? I am having your coat! Can I set it on fire now?"

While he does have complete control over his powers, no one has such control that they can always be prepared environmental dangers such as Dwayne posits. When his leg is grabbed. Conquistador grins and the small plot of concrete o which Dwayne is trapped is manipulated causing even more stress to the surrounding area as more concrete hands attempt to grab at Dwayne, specifically his arms, chest, and throat.

When Armand demands an audience with Conquistador, Manuel hmmmns loudly and takes a few steps back and away, “I hope this proves entertaining enough to take away from my primary goal.” Conquistador lowers the spikes in front of Armand, just those as Manuel makes his way out of sight and towards the limo. Armand now has a view of what is going on. Tourists and such continue to snap away or record but not interfere.

Dwayne continues to pull and tug at his leg, "Come on Nova; Speedball; Someone...." he utters this under his breath and it's almost non-verbal. As more concrete is manipulated and formed into hands, Dwayne narrows his eyes in concentration. He moves his head and upperbody in such a way to try and avoid getting grabbed by the hands. He's hoping the concrete has been structurally weakened by the manipulations of Conquistador... because he uses a spare moment and a spare palm to lash out at the hand holding his foot. He hits the concrete with a strike of his paln while simultaniously pulling with his leg

Armand turns slightly in timre to see Manuel has headed away and he stomps his foot and turns back to the mess as he takes another few steps forward, past those lowered spikes a bit and he lets his hair grow out slowly past his waist for now before taking a deep breath. "Monsieur, Pardon yes..." He shakes out the trenchcoat and holds it up a bit. "HELLO! Can you not see me? I am needing your feedback, or I will go ahead and burn it!"

With Manuel in the limo now, he watches again from the monitor. His eyes begin to glow as he find himself exerting his influence onto Conquistador. Any attack against Dwayne are halted as the hands begin to grow back into the concrete freeing him from being trapped. When Armand makes his entrance known, Conquistador turns to face the follicle wielding mutant, “My coat! You would dare burn it!” Conquistador moves forward and swings his arm in an attempt to hit Armand though Dwayne may notice that the Spaniard’s movement are slower and he seems to be holding back against Armand.

Dwayne is freed and not because of his own meddling. The badgering questions may be part of the distraction, but his physical pulling and striking were not the cause of his sudden freedom. He reaches into his pocket and pulls out his phone long enough to look at the illuminated screen. He grits his teeth, "Nobody." He taps the screen with a thumb and slides it back into the pocket. His other hand slides into his other pocket and he pulls out a small cylinder, about one inch in diameter with a button on the side. The opening in the ring of spikes is his objective right now, and Dwayne runs for it!

Armand did what he meant to do, he created a distraction, a small distraction and he takes a deep breath and then another, when that arm is swinging, his hair which reaches his ankles for now reaches out a thick mass of tendrils to wrap around the wrist of the swinging arm in an effort to tug it off target and he takes another deep breath. "I wanted...I wanted to tell you how beautiful you are!"

The hairs from Armand manage to grab Conquistador’s fist and caught off balance, he stumbles over. For a millisecond when he is in the process of falling, his body suddenly shifts to a short fat and balding man. Not quite so beautiful anymore, but when his body makes contact with the ground again, the beautiful man from earlier appears. The spikes crumble apart with chunks of concrete flying everywhere allowing Dwayne to run away with no intervention from Conquistador. Empath continues manipulating Conquistador as he watches from the monitor, but finally saw Armand in action.

Dwayne skids to a stop as everything crumbles around him. He looks around him at the crumbling concrete spikes and hands. He purses his lips and glances back towards Conquistador, "Huh." He says before running towards Conquistador like you wouldn't expect him to. As he runs, he's holding the object out in front of him.

Up above them there's a streak as the Human Rocket himself flies into Midtown. Nova careens through the sky on his way to the scene of the conflict. He hovers above everyone and calls out, "Alright! That's enough, chump! We're ending this now!" Nova spares a glance to Dwayne, wags an eyebrow and puts his attention back on Conquistador.

The hair is retracted rather quickly, just hair falling down around his shoulders, normal hair, nothing happened! Armand takes a deep breath and then another deep breath, staring at the fat..bald man and then the shift back to the beautiful man and he just looks thoughtful, taking a deep breath. He jumps though and drops the trenchcoat, spinning around at the arrival of the Human Rocket and he stares with wide eyes.

The Conquistador appears confused as he tries to regain some awareness of what is going on. He does not expect Dwayne to run towards him and looks away when Nova arrives. He looks up and is so distracted that he leaves himself open for Dwayne. In the limo with the arrival of Nova, Manuel de la Rocha decides that it is time to put an end to this little scene. His eyes glow again as he stares at the monitor showing what is happening.

Nova's arrival isn't enough to stop Dwayne's forward advance. In fact, Dwayne is hoping that Nova's arrival acts as a temporary distraction. Dwayne has been inconvenienced enough so he continues approaching Conquistador. Nova hovers there and thrusts his hand out, "Hey Dw-, Mister, let me handle it!" in a vain attempt to give Dwayne the out he needs to get away. Instead,
Dwayne runs up to Conquistador and thrusts the object he's got in his hands up towards the other man's face. A button is pressed and there's a hissing noise as small cloud of pepper spray forms around Conquistador's head.

As Dwayne goes ahead and does this, Nova's shoulders slump, "Oh, wonderful."

Armand seems a bit relieved when the Conquistador goes down and then he looks over towards Dwayne as he approaches and he opens his mouth and shuts it before noticing he's aiming something. "Monsieur! Non!" But he's too late as he rushes forward towards Dwayne almost as if trying to throw his little...body against the bigger man. "He is already down!"

Screaming as the pepper spray hits his eyes, Conquistador lets out a loud howl and starts panicking swinging wildly and causing the ground on which they all stand to shake and quake a bit. It appears Dwayne was right earlier for warning Conquistador stress to other things as some pipes come loose and undone shooting water up and steam. A fire hydrant comes completely loose sending water flying at Armand, Conquistador, and Dwayne while the hydrant itself shoots straight up into the sky and towards Nova. Safe in the limo a bit away, Empath uses his powers to flood Conquistador fill with an mind-numbing overwhelming surgence of emotions. The once-good looking giant Spaniard falls over into the shooting water appearing like an emotionless zombie. The limo itself drives off as sirens are heard and finally the authorities arrive. Any tourists who were simply recording suddenly stop and go about their business.

Dwayne hops back away from Conquistador after his device has delivered its payload. The spent device is slid back into his pocket. Then the ruptured pipes and fire hydrant go off. Dwayne gets staggered by the sudden burst of water... not to mention soaked. Dwayne looks up towards Nova who moves to dodge the actual metal hydrant. He drops down next to Conquistador and holds up a hand to keep water from spraying him in the face, "So, uh, I guess you're under arrest, huh? Property damage, assault, all the fun ones. Boys in Blue are on the way too!" Dwayne doesn't stick around to give a statement nor to thank Nova or Armand. He's walking briskly down the street with a purpose to his stride.

WOOSH, Apparently Armand's attempt at a tackle/push/shove is interrupted by the water from the hydrant knocking him over and soakced completely as he takes a deep breath and then another deep breath, scrambling backwards a bit and he sighs softly, closing his eyes and jogging off. This was a very odd scene, a very odd scenario indeed.

The police take Conquistador into custody and workers already begin to repair the damage done.

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