Arrow: The Hunted

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Cazzik
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Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Wed Mar 26, 2014 10:31 pm

Image

BLUDHAVEN, NEW JERSEY

Bludhaven was a dark place. Gritty streets were lined with drug dealers, prostitutes, and thugs. They seemed to be everywhere, especially in Astoria and the Hollows. These areas of the city were so infested that the police wouldn't enter them unless they were in force. Full riot gear and heavy armaments were generally required. Corruption ran unchecked throughout the police department and the mayor's office. However, there were good men and women among them. Sergeant James Walker had quickly become a reliable ally to him. Though the officer had no idea who he really was underneath the hood, they had formed a mutual trust. On more than one occasion he had also met with the mayor himself, Alan White. He was an honorable man who was unfortunately in over his head. He was aware of the corruption yet had no idea how to combat it when he didn't know who to trust. These two men had been feeding him information for months.

Though he would go out on patrols he preferred to have a target. Randomly running around and taking out low level thugs only went so far to clean up the city. He was a hunter. He needed something to hunt. He had been targeting organized crime. Take down the heads of the families and throw them into chaos. Gang wars had proven more dangerous then anything else on the streets. These organizations needed to go first. Once they were out of the picture he could begin picking off the smaller game. So far his tactics were working. They were afraid.

He didn't operate like his predecessor; his father. He had been trained at an early age in the art of the bow and arrow. He was a masterful marksman, rivaled by only a few. His father had taught him well in this area. It was part of his daily regiment, along with a healthy side of melee combat. Though his father had been adept in hand to hand combat there had been many that were greater. He had learned from some of the best and surpassed his father's skills ten times over in this particular area.....as well as many others. His parents had not intended him to go down this road. They had simply wanted him to be able to protect himself. After they had died he was forced to take it further until he became what he was. He had learned at the hands of some of the greatest warriors and assassins in the world. He had become far more dangerous than his predecessor ever was.

He reached up and pressed the earpiece, "Are your men in place, Sergeant?"

"They are. We are ready when you give me the word." Walker's voice came back across the private channel.

He stared down through the rain at the warehouse below. There was a meeting happening. Several family heads were in attendance. They were attempting to call a truce so they could deal with their mutual problem. Him.

They were about to discover that he was not so easily dealt with. They would learn why he was the world's greatest hunter. They would witness first hand that he was the world's greatest marksman. They would learn to properly fear the Green Arrow.
Last edited by Cazzik on Sat Jan 10, 2015 12:01 am, edited 1 time in total.
"I'd like to nominate Cazzik for the Sexiest Man on Earth 2010." --Balsa

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Cazzik
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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Thu Apr 03, 2014 9:09 pm

The majority of the police had no idea Sergeant Walker was working with him. Though they hadn't attempted to bring him in yet he was still, technically, a vigilante. Of course, so were the likes of Superman and Thor. Something told him he was more likely a target for the police then the all powerful gods and aliens. He assumed Walker had told the rest of his team about a lead. He knew the sergeant hadn't mentioned him, though he was aware of a few supporters in the crowd. He smiled slightly as he watched some of the men out front. Had this been his father's era he would have no doubt fired an EMP arrow to shut down the lights (and all other electronics) in the vicinity. Conner considered himself the next stage in evolution for the Green Arrow.

"Grid. Kill the cell towers nearby."

"Understood." An electronic voice sounded in Conner's ear. He watched as Grid did as he was instructed. Grid was a program his father had designed for security applications. When he realized what the program could potentially be used for he scrapped the project. Conner discovered it and, with no shortage of help from some allies, re-purposed the program to serve as his partner, via the city grid. Hence his name. So far, he had proved invaluable. Grid had access to satellites in space, security cameras, personal computers, etc. Hell, if he really needed him to Grid could more than likely hack into SHIELD, the Pentagon, or ARGUS. He was perfectly capable of giving Iron Man's DATA program a run for his money.

He pressed a button on his bow and his arrow heads rotated in his quiver. A grappling hook attached itself to an arrow shaft as he pulled it out. He notched it on his bow and let the arrow fly. It hit its mark, as it always did. He flew quickly and silently to the rooftop of the adjacent building. The guards out front had seen nothing. He pulled out a small torch from his utility belt and cut through the metal siding of the building, crawling into the rafters and making his way to an area where he could overhear the meeting. He wanted as much information as he could get before he brought them in. He would need it in order to mop up their organizations.
"I'd like to nominate Cazzik for the Sexiest Man on Earth 2010." --Balsa

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Tue Apr 29, 2014 3:44 pm

Conner stared down at the large gathering of crime lords and their lackeys. He recognized them all. It was his job to know the scum in this city. Despite being the son of the original Green Arrow he understood that he operated more like a disciple of Batman. His father, Oliver, though skilled as he was had a habit of rushing in half cocked and firing his bow. According to his journals and records that put him at odds with several of the other members of the Justice League on several occasions. Even had him being replaced on the team by his old apprentice, Red Arrow. Conner had met him several times; Roy Harper. He had practiced with the man more than once. He wasn't quite as adept as Oliver with the bow but he was still very good. At the time he had been better than Conner.

He remained hidden in the shadows as he watched the group. His dark green suit blended in nicely with the night. The crime lords were getting antsy. Several of them were pacing back and forth. Why hadn't the meeting started yet? All of the major players were there. Everyone was accounted for. The door to the warehouse flew open and a large, silver man walked in. Two massive hammers were strapped to his back. Jack Hammer. Green Arrow frowned. Jack was a thug for hire. No real brains but he was nigh invulnerable and had super strength. This would complicate things a bit. Behind him came an athletic woman wearing an orange and black combat suit with a mask. A sword was strapped to her back. Arrow did not recognize her. He recorded her image with his scanner and uploaded the information to Grid. Perhasps the computer system would get a hit on her. The two armed individuals took up residence on either side of the warehouse as more men with guns entered. The crime bosses looked around, some clearly more nervous than others.

Finally a handsome man in an expensive suit entered the warehouse. Green Arrow's frown became more pronounced. It was Robert Griffin, owner and CEO of FutureCom. Conner had discovered criminal elements within the company a couple of months back but he had no idea how high up they went. Clearly, that question had just been answered. However, by looking at the faces of the other attendees it was clear that Griffin's presence had not been expected. One of the men chimed up, "Robert Griffin! So you called this meeting?"

The wealthy man smiled, "Yes, I did. You are all having an issue with a certain archer. No need to pretend you aren't and no need to act like you have the situation under control. We all know that everyone else here is having the exact same problem with the exact same individual. I'm here to fix it."

Another of the men laughed, "You're going to fix it? Even if you could what would you want in exchange?"

Griffin scanned the room slowly before answering, "25% of all profits from each of you. No more gang wars and no more infighting. You all answer to me."

Several of the men took hostile stances, moments away from reaching for their firearms. This was about to become a bloodbath. The same man continued his line of questioning, "And why the hell would we agree to that?"

Jack Hammer stepped forward and gripped both of his mighty weapons in either hand. He was an imposing figure. Griffin continued, "Because I have more money than you. I have more men than you. I have more guns than you, " He motioned towards Hamnmer and the woman in the back, "And I have a lot more friends than you."

He held his hand up in a gesture for everyone to remain calm, "This is not a bad thing for any of you. I will handle the Arrow and I will handle the police. All you have to do is earn and I know all of you are good at that. Go ahead and think it over. We will all meet again soon."

The crime bosses looked around at each other and slowly they exited the warehouse with their men, going their separate ways. Conner knew Sergeant Walker would be furious. The man just wasted time and man power on this little raid. However, he needed to learn all he could about Griffin. Jumping into the middle of this without proper information could get someone killed, most likely him. Green Arrow watched as everyone else left the warehouse except for Griffin. His men took up residence outside as another car pulled up and a lone individual in a black hood got out and entered the building.

Robert frowned at the man, "I told you they wouldn't be thrilled with that ultimatum! They aren't just going to bow down to me like I'm the new Bludhaven Kingpin! This was a mistake!"

The man in the hood shook his head, "Calm yourself, Mr. Griffin. They will bow to you. The ones that do not will be dealt with swiftly. We promised you Bludhaven and we always deliver on our promises."

Robert frowned, "You had better!"

The man in the hood stood very still, "Be very careful about issuing threats, Mr. Griffin. We are not petty crime bosses and we do not respond well to someone barking orders at us," He walked towards the exit, "Especially him." The man left the warehouse, followed by Griffin. Green Arrow stared down at the empty room wondering one thing.....who the hell were these new players?
"I'd like to nominate Cazzik for the Sexiest Man on Earth 2010." --Balsa

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Mir
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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Mir » Mon May 05, 2014 5:30 pm

“Bludhaven stinks.” Holland said, dropping into her chair in the media war room of the Daily Patriot, one of the largest newspapers in Bludhaven.

“You chose to come here.” Monica replied, not looking over at the other woman as she stared at Facebook on her computer. “I mean you could have gone anywhere.” She said. “Pulitzer prize winning journalist that you are.” She said.

“Yeah, I just didn’t think that this place would be so bad. Sure there are stories, but this place is just so gloomy.” Holland said with a shrug. She reached out and grabbed the container of lo mein and dug in, spearing a piece of chicken.

“Move to Gotham.” Monica said, the African American woman jerking her head in the vaguest of directions towards where Gotham was located, still keeping her eyes glued to the computer screen in front of her.

“Oh, hell no. Bludhaven is a dump, but it’s paradise compared to how bad Gotham City is. That place has crime levels like you wouldn’t believe.” She said. “Though the news articles have been getting better and better over the past year. They say that the police have been doing a great job.” Holland said.

Monica finally pulled her eyes away from her computer screen and gave her relatively new friend a look. “Get real. It’s not the cops. Well, not just the cops. It’s Batman.”

Holland threw up her hands. “Please, don’t say that. I’ve had enough of superheroes and costumed freaks in my life.” She said. “I don’t want to know that there’s some guy in a Batsuit across the river. I think I’d cry a bit.” She said.

“What do you think she’s going to do when she hears about the Hood?” Gary asked, walking by.

Holland’s eyes narrowed, and looked up from her lo mein, locking eyes with Monica. “What is Gary ‘Sports Dude’ Briars talking about?” She asked. “Who’s ‘the Hood’?”

“Right. You’re still kind of new in town. We’ve got a…what’d you call it…’costumed freak’ of our own.” She said. “Some people call him ‘the Hood’, other people call him ‘Arrow’ or ‘Green Arrow’. You know, like-”

“Like the guy from before.” Holland said, finishing for her.

Why were there always heroes and villains around her?

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Cazzik
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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Tue May 20, 2014 3:53 pm

"Get up."

Conner slowly opened his eyes. Someone had opened the drapes, allowing the sun to invade his bedroom through the window. He was not overly happy about this.

"Conner, I said get up."

Queen sat up in bed and looked at the man across the room. The African american individual was well built; athletic. He wore a grey suit and though you couldn't see it Conner knew there was a gun concealed beneath the jacket, "Portman, you are aware that you work for me, right? Not the other way around."

"Yeah, well at this point I'm feeling pretty indispensable seeing as how no one else knows about your extra curricular activities. Besides, you're all ready late for the board meeting." John walked over to the door, "So....get up and get dressed. I'll pull the car around."

John Portman walked out of the bedroom and vanished from sight. Conner pulled himself out of bed and proceeded to get dressed. His mind continued to wander back to the events of last night. He needed to find out who was under the black hood. Whoever it was and whoever he worked for was providing assistance and resources to the crime families of Bludhaven via Robert Griffin, whom appeared to be something of a pawn as well. This was troubling. Queen's entire mission had been to quickly clean up the streets of Bludhaven so he could then be free to travel the world and dispense justice to other targets who had thus far eluded capture; war lord, criminals, genocidal maniacs, etc. The world needed an international hero and that had been his original plan. But he could not allow his own city to rot from within. He needed to take care of his home before he took care of someone else's.

Something about these new players made him uneasy. They were more than what they were pretending to be. As soon as he was done with the board meeting, which he intimately despised, he and Portman would need to get to work. After making himself presentable he walked down to the car where John was waiting, "Don't forget, after the meeting you have an interview scheduled with the Daily Patriot. One year after your return to civilization and they want to know how you're doing."

Conner's head dropped, "Of course they do. Can't wait."
"I'd like to nominate Cazzik for the Sexiest Man on Earth 2010." --Balsa

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Mir » Tue May 27, 2014 6:43 am

“So Mr. Queen, if you could-“

“Conner, please.”

The woman smiled. “Conner, if you could, in your own words, tell us how coming back to Bludhaven, how the adjustment has been?” She asked.

“Well, where I was before, there were definitely not as many pretty women.” Conner said with a smile, before he continued talking.

“He’s so smarmy.” Holland said, watching from the other side of the room, where she was drinking from a cup of coffee. “Jessica isn’t even asking him real questions.” She added, shaking her head.

Monica rolled into view on her chair. “You could have taken the interview. You’re the one who told the boss that you didn’t want it.”

“Because it’s a vanity piece. There’s no story.” Holland said. “But I hate seeing bad journalism.” She added and then gawked. “Jesus, he looks away, she unbuttons another button on her top.”

“A vanity piece that’s dealing with millions of dollars.” Monica said.

“Possibly closer to billions.” Gary said, walking by.

“Damnit Sports Dude, stop doing that.” Holland said, almost dropping her coffee from the sports journalist who had an uncanny ability to move almost deadly silent in the office. But he was already gone, so she turned to Monica. “We need to put bells on him or something.” She said, before looking back at the interview in progress.

“Yeah, we tried that once.” She said. “Didn’t take.” She added, and then looked at the interview. “Oh, for God’s sake, just go over there and interfere. You want to. Besides, you can tell me if he’s really GQ worthy or not.” Monica said. “Not that I haven’t seen pictures or anything already.”

“I do not want to interfere.” Holland said, but Monica had placed a sneaker clad foot on the back of Holly’s chair and pushed really hard, sending her careening through the office, towards where Conner and Jessica were sitting.

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Thu Jul 03, 2014 10:11 pm

The chair came fast at the couple. Holland had been completely caught unaware and was unable to respond quickly enough to stop her acceleration. The wheel of her seat hit a chord and jerked to a halt, sending the blonde woman forward. As she mentally prepared herself to hit the floor her descent stopped. She looked up to see Conner Queen's face and quickly realized the man had caught her. As he helped her to her feet it was apparent that Jessica was both impressed by Mr. Queen's quick reflexes and annoyed with Holland's interference. The interviewer smiled and spoke as Conner continued to stare at Holland, "Well that was very impressive, Conner! You must be quite the athlete!"

Queen ignored Jessica completely. His eyes fixed solely on Holland. There was something about this woman. He smiled at her, "Are you all right?"

Holland nodded curtly, "I'm fine. Thank you."

He watched as she collected herself and sent a nasty glare back from whence she came. He extended his hand, "I'm Conner Queen."

She looked up at him with a distinct lack of awe, "I know who you are."

Conner let a smile creep out the side of his mouth, "Might I get your name?"

Holland stopped and realized she had definitely come across rude. It wasn't his fault that her friend had decided to embarrass her, "Yes. I'm sorry. I'm Holland. Holland Daniels."

Conner smiled warmly at her, "It's a pleasure to meet you, Holland." He then addressed the other woman in true billionaire playboy style, never even looking at her, "Jessica, I think I would like Holland to finish my interview. I'm sure your editor won't mind. Thank you for understanding."

His face held an expression of cockiness as he addressed his new interviewer, "Shall we?"
"I'd like to nominate Cazzik for the Sexiest Man on Earth 2010." --Balsa

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Mir
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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Mir » Wed Jul 16, 2014 1:30 pm

“I haven’t prepared for an interview.” Holland said, as Jessica stared daggers at her. “I don’t have any questions ready, any follow ups. I don’t know anything about you, really.” She said.

“Sounds like the perfect person for an…interview.” Conner said, with an easy smile.

She narrowed her eyes.

“I don’t bite, I promise.” He said.

Holland looked around for a moment and then sat down in Jessica’s seat, as Conner resumed sitting in his own. “Alright, well, I guess we can do this.” She said.

“You’re not going to write any of this down?” He asked when it didn’t appear that she was going to produce any form of paper or recorder.

“Eidetic memory.” Holland said. “So, let’s start with the basics. You’re back in Bludhaven. It’s been a while since you’ve been back, a year, and for some reason it seems as good as a time as any to ask how you’re doing, and whether you’ve adjusted back to general population status, or at least as gen pop as someone like you can get.” She said. “That wasn’t really a question, but feel free to answer it.” Holland added, with a smirk.

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Sat Aug 02, 2014 12:23 am

Conner liked this woman. She was beautiful to say the least but it was more than that. She actually peaked his interest, which was rare in this day and age. Yes, he had become quite adept at feigning interest because he needed to but to actually feel it for a change was nice. He couldn't pinpoint what exactly was so engrossing about this diversion but in the long run it didn't really matter," Yes, I have been back for a little over a year and that seems to be the big question for everyone. How are you doing, Conner? What was it like on that island? What did you miss the most?"

For a brief moment Holland could see a seriousness in the man's eyes that sat across from her. He seemed to be thinking back on the past several years; away from civilization and deprived of family and friends. However, as quickly as the look had appeared it vanished just as fast, "You know what I always tell them? Scotch."

He smiled, "I missed scotch, steak, football, cigars, etc. You know, all the good stuff," His eyes met hers, "And especially conversation over dinner with a beautiful woman."

She knew he was full of shit. No one in their right mind could be this pompous and over confident. She was beginning to take it as a personal challenge to get something real out of him, "So what was it like over there? All of the interviews you've had and you have yet to really discuss what happened to you on that island."

He leaned back in his chair, "Well, the hotels sucked. The beds were literally as hard as rocks and it was impossible to find any employees to complain to. The beaches were decent but you did have to contend with the local wildlife which is a little more work than I'm accustomed to. And the absolute worst part.......there were literally no attract women to be found anywhere. I mean, what the hell is a rich, handsome guy supposed to do with his time in a place like that?"

Holland didn't smile. She just stared at him for a long while. They sat in silence as Conner's gaze met hers. She could see through all of his crap and he knew it. She leaned back in her own chair, "You joke about your experience quite a bit but I don't think it was all that funny when you were there. I'm willing to bet you weren't laughing."

She leaned forward and pulled her chair closer to his, "You were in a plain crash over the ocean. Your father died. Your mother died. Your little sister died. You were alone for six years in an environment that more than likely wanted to kill you. That, Mr. Queen, was not a joke."

Her face got even closer to his, "Tell me something real. When the sun went down and the night surrounded you what was it like then? Tell me that. Tell me how that affects you now?" She locked eyes with him and saw the seriousness return. He said nothing for a long while and their quiet interaction had attracted the attention of other reporters, including Holland's editor.

Without removing his gaze from her he spoke, "Cold. It was cold. And now I can't sleep unless I have all of my windows open. I guess it's amazing what you get used to."
"I'd like to nominate Cazzik for the Sexiest Man on Earth 2010." --Balsa

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Mir » Tue Aug 05, 2014 7:06 am

She smiled, a smile of a woman who had gotten just what she had been aiming for.

“I once spent three months in the Himalayas, learning the ropes from the Sherpa guides. Lived with them, ate with them, bled with them, the whole nine yards. They almost had to medevac me due to air pressurization changes but I refused.” Holland said.

Then she tucked some loose strands of hair behind her ear, before continuing. “It’s something that changes you. If that happened to me after three months, then six years has to be something incredible.” Her face changed then, becoming much more accusatory. “You want to give bullshit interviews with people like Jessica while she tries to get in your pants, fine. But don’t try that shit with me, Queen.” Holland said.

A quick roll of the eyes. “Yeah, you’re cute, in a GQ poster boy kind of way. But at the end of the day, I couldn’t care less how you look. Or how much money you have, for that matter. I care about the story.”

Leaning back in her chair, she gave him a short smile. “Now, let’s try this again. You were stranded on this island for six years, after the plane crash. No one has any record of the black box being found. It’s probably on the bottom of the ocean. Which begs the question, do you have any ideas as to what happened, what brought the plane down?”

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Thu Aug 07, 2014 11:21 pm

He stared at her. She was smart. She could potentially help him figure out the great mystery that was his family's tragedy. But he didn't know her. She was a journalist and to let her in could be very, very dangerous. There were a select few he could trust. In fact, at this time, there was only one; Portman. The man had brought him back. Not only to civilization but also to his senses. He knew everything. He knew what had happened to Conner. He knew all of the horrible things he had done. And most importantly, he was the only one that knew that Conner hadn't been on that island for very long at all; six months at the most. No one else could know that. If they did it would lead to other questions. Like where he had actually been for the majority of the six years and how and why was he on that random island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. Little did anyone know that wasn't a random island at all. It was called Starfish Island and it had been the same place where his father, Oliver, had been stranded so many years ago.

Unlike his father, however, he had chosen to go there. He had chosen a life of exile; to be alone without the comforts of civilized life. Portman had found him and brought him home. He had been the only man in the world that could have located him. John had been his father's right hand man after he had given up the hero life. He knew all about Oliver and his past exploits. His sole purpose had been to keep the Queen family safe from anyone who might ever discover that the Green Arrow was still alive and had not perished in the Chrell invasion. Oliver grew older and realized he would need someone to watch over his loved ones once he was gone. It had been a stroke of sheer luck that Portman had not been on the plane that day or otherwise he would have most likely died along with Conner's family.

After the plane went down Portman had wasted no time searching for any survivors. He had even made his way to Starfish Island on multiple occasions hoping someone would be there. Little had he known that the only survivor was Conner and someone had fished him out of the sea before he ever made landfall. Conner realized the plane had been sabotaged and the men that had found him had the means to discover who it was and to make them pay. Queen had all ready been an expert marksman and an above average martial artist thanks to his father's training but the men that had found him forged him into a living weapon. He had become one of the world's deadliest assassins and his desire for vengeance had blinded him to the evils of his new brethren; the Hand.

He heard Holland's question, "What brought the plane down?" He had been asked this question before and had always given the same reply, "I have no idea. The plane jerked and then we saw smoke coming from one of the turbines. The next thing we knew we were going down. I was the only one to make it to the life raft." That part had been the truth. Everyone else had drowned before making it out of the plane. He had tried to get to his little sister but she was gone before he could pull her to safety. The look on her lifeless eyes has been imprinted in his mind forever.

He shook his head and continued, "Honestly, Ms. Daniels, there isn't that much to tell. I washed up onshore of that island and nearly died of starvation within the first week. It's amazing what you are capable of when you have to rely on yourself." Conner sighed softly, "It was cold, damp, and lonely over there. There isn't much else to say about it."
"I'd like to nominate Cazzik for the Sexiest Man on Earth 2010." --Balsa

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Mir » Tue Aug 12, 2014 9:04 pm

The woman nodded. “As long as you’re being honest.” She said, slowly. Holland could tell when she had gotten to someone. Years of investigative journalism had taught her how to do it and how to know. Just as important, was knowing how and when to back off. Though she didn't know it, Holland would have made a great interrogator in her ability to get people to confess to what was really going on with them. "That's what's important, honesty."

“How would you be able to tell, anyway?” He asked, trying to inject that roguish charm back into this voice and body language.

She laughed. “You don’t get a Pulitzer for being an idiot.” She said.

His face changed, as he thought about it. Waving a finger in the air, he spoke, and she knew that he was going to make a joke. “I got one back in fourth grade. Yeah, I had to write a book report on The Bridge to Terabithia.” Connor said, and when the smile stayed on her face, he leaned back in his chair, the mask coming back up. He slid out a small phone and looked at it, as if he was checking a message. Feigning a short laugh, he tapped a few buttons on it. In reality, he had requested that Grid get him whatever information was available on Holland Daniels. Grid would repurpose itself as a temporary Vanguard data server and make the request, getting the information that Connor needed without Brian Grace being aware that it had even happened.

Holland could see it almost, but she let it slide. The mask was back and she wasn't going to break past it again. This wasn’t a real investigative piece, just some fluff for the newspaper’s vanity insert. Had this been a real piece, she would have pressed him further. There had been something there though, something deeper, when she had gotten those few moments of honesty out of him. Real pain, real tragedy. But why would she break it down when there was no need? Ignoring the jab about the Pulitzer, she spoke. “Well, I guess we’ll go with the usual. It was a nasty little island, you had to survive off of coconuts and fish you speared yourself. You came home, and decided that you had to relearn how money worked in this country by spending a lot of it.”

He nodded. “Before I got back, I had to barter with pebbles. With myself.” Connor replied, without missing a beat.

“I bet.” Holland said, rising, as he looked down at his phone again. Considering the interview over, she turned to walk away. She stopped when he reached an arm out, trapping her wrist. "Mr. Queen, I think we're done with the interview." She said and tried to free her hand but found that she couldn't. Strange, he had a lot of strength for a man with his upbringing and background. But then again, he had had to survive on an island for more than five years. It made sense that he'd picked up some muscle.

“Holly, I was wondering…well, I can call you Holly, right?” He asked, using her nickname.

“You were wondering if you could call me Holly?” She asked, wondering where he had found out that nickname. It wasn't a usual derivative of Holland and more importantly, not many people called her that. Very few actually.

“No, I was wondering if you were available for dinner some time this week?” He asked. “You interviewed me, it only seems fair that I interview you.” Connor said with an offhanded shrug.

That got a laugh.

“Tell you what, if I remember right, Queen Industries doesn’t own any media companies. You buy a newspaper or a news channel or something, get yourself a press pass…we’ll talk.” She said and this time was able to extricate her hand from his grasp.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

The Next Day

Holland woke up in her apartment.

What was that sound?

She had insisted on a queen sized bed when she'd moved into the apartment, in one of the nicer parts of Bludhaven. Because she'd had a good bit of money saved up, Holland had been able to splurge a bit on the furnishings. Before this, everything had come from IKEA. There was nothing wrong with IKEA, but it had been year since she had been a struggling, starving college kid. She'd always wished to have a real place of her own, and this was it, finally.

Though, she'd have to remodel, if she couldn't find the source of that buzzing noise, since she'd break everything in this place. Flopping around a bit, she reached for her nightstand to where her phone should be, and then she realized what the noise was, or at least, where it was coming from. It was coming from her phone which was not on her nightstand. Holland didn't really like technology. They didn't get along. Groaning, she sat up in bed and looked around, eyes squinting against the sunlight.

Holly had let Monica convince her to go out to some new bar or something and they’d been up until almost three in the morning. It was now a little after seven in the morning and she’d barely gotten any sleep. Obviously, she’d forgotten to leave her phone on her endtable.

“Aha!” Holland said, spying the phone on the floor next to her pair of running shoes. She scrambled, and almost fell off the bed as she grabbed it.

It was the sound of her newsfeed buzzing. It was the Daily Patriot’s web app going off with a local headline. Cursing the fact that she had allowed her boss to convince her to install their app, she swiped at her iPhone. She read the headline and then read it again.

Queen Industries makes a tender offer to buyout control of the Daily Patriot

The picture underneath the headline was Connor, all smiles, shaking hands with the owner of the Daily Patriot. He was wearing a heather gray suit, Brooks Brothers, her well trained eye told her. All of that faded as she saw what he was holding up in his other hand. Around his neck was a lanyard, and attached to that lanyard was a laminated card that he was holding up to the camera. It was Press Pass on it.

“I think I hate that man….” She said, before tossing her phone back on the ground and tossing herself against her pillows.

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Thu Aug 14, 2014 10:46 pm

Abandoned Warehouse in Astoria

It was the middle of the afternoon and Sergeant James Walker moved cautiously into the warehouse. He had received the message from Green Arrow as he sat on his computer at the station. Always amazed him how the vigilante managed to hack his way into every little device he could. Of course, little did Walker know the hacking was actually done by an A.I. system known as Grid. The message had asked the sergeant to meet him at this location....alone. It was dark, little sunlight flooded in through the broken windows. The place had clearly been abandoned long ago. Not surprising. The only area of the city that was worse than Astoria was the Hollows. At least the Arrow hadn't wanted to meet there.

He knew better than to turn a flashlight on. His ally did not appreciate attempts at seeing his face. He waited patiently, knowing that the other man's voice would come soon. Most likely before he ever laid eyes on him. Such was the norm during their meetings. Sure enough, it happened once again, "Thank you for meeting me, Sergeant."

The voice came from behind him. Walker whirled around to see the Arrow step out from the shadows. The police officer frowned, "I came because I want some answers. You left me and my team high and dry the other night. My captain ripped me a new one! I called in a lot of favors to get that raid set up because you said it would be the biggest take down the city had ever seen! What the hell happened, man?!"

The Arrow's eyes burned right through him. Walker hated when the other man glared at him like that, "There were complications. Two new players revealed themselves at the meeting. Only one of them could be identified. The other wore a hood. I couldn't make him out."

"The one you identified, who was it?" Walker's question was a natural one but Conner was not yet willing to share that information. "I'll let you know when I have more information. I called you here because whoever these new players are they are trying to unite all of organized crime under one roof. Someone is trying to become a kingpin and I cannot let that happen. I need you to reach out to any contacts you have. I need as much data as I can get in order to operate."

Walker frowned, "And what are my contacts looking for?"

"A man in a black hood."

**********

Bludhaven Police Department
Organized Crime Task Force


Walker entered the headquarters of the OCTF, in which he was a member. The task force had been put together three years earlier in order to combat the organized crime families in Bludhaven. Walker had been one of the first recruited by Captain Dane Ross. The task force is a multi-agency outfit with representatives from the Bludhaven Police Department, the DEA, the FBI, ATF, and ICE. His previous partner had been a DEA agent, killed in the line of duty a couple of months back. Walker would have been shot dead that very same night had the Arrow not intervened. Since then he had assisted the hero with his war on crime.

As he headed to his desk his captain's voice flooded over him from the other side of the room, "Sergeant. I need a word with you."

James turned to see his commanding officer step back into his office. He approached the open door and entered the small space beyond. A gorgeous, blonde woman stood up from one of the chairs. She wore form fitting jeans and a white t-shirt, her gun holstered at her side. A black leather jacket completed her ensemble, "Sergeant James Walker this is Agent Kayla Evans of ARGUS. She's new to the task force as well as your new partner. Give her the tour and then get her up to speed on our operation."

Walker extended his hand and shook Agent Evans'. As gorgeous as she was he could see an edge on her. She had seen some shit, "Nice to meet you."

"Likewise, Sergeant."
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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Thu Aug 21, 2014 12:36 pm

The Apartment of Holland Daniels

He stood outside the apartment door, bouquet of flowers in hand. Nothing too lavish, just a nice arrangement from a local florist. He wore jeans with a black, collared shirt with the sleeves rolled up and a pair of black shoes. It was early evening and he actually couldn't remember the last time he was nervous. At least, not this type of nervous. He had survived the Hand and its enemies for almost six years then survived alone on an island for several months without provisions. He had taken on organized crime bosses and super villains alike, some with extraordinary powers, and yet taking a beautiful woman to dinner seemed nerve racking. Well, it wasn't so much taking a beautiful woman to dinner as it was taking THIS beautiful woman to dinner. There was something about her......and that worried him.

John had not liked the idea. He had warned him that getting close to someone puts them in danger. Conner knew the older man was correct. Dating someone would put a target on them should one of his enemies ever discover his real identity. However, he was careful to keep his two lives separate from one another. As long as he remained vigilant he was certain everything would be fine. He knocked on the door and noted the distinct lack of surprise when Holland laid eyes on him. "Cute stunt you pulled today."

He smiled. It was a genuine smile. He pulled out the press pass from his back pocket and held it up. He extended both arms, handing her both the press pass and the flowers, "Those are for you," She smiled off offhandedly and accepted the flowers and examined the press pass before handing it back to him, "How did you find my apartment? I'm not listed in the book. I literally just moved in."

Her expression was playful yet stern. Conner's grin extended, "Employee files. It was my first order of business after acquiring the Patriot."

She put one hand on her hip and stared at him, "So you're telling me you're something of a stalker? You're using company information to harass an employee at her place of residence. Not very professional, Mr. Queen."

Conner shrugged, "I've never been one for being professional. However, I am rather well known for being able to find the best places to eat in the city. So will you let me take you to dinner? I promise I'll be a complete gentleman," He held up his hand and smiled, "Scout's honor!"

Holland rolled her eyes but stepped to the side of the entryway, "Come in. I need to change but it'll only take a minute." He almost skipped through the door but refrained. As she walked around the corner to what he presumed was her bedroom she yelled back, "Don't touch anything!" His smiled vanished as he quietly put the vase back down on the shelf.

**********

30 Minutes Later...

Conner jumped out of the Jeep first and walked around the car to open the door for Holland, despite her protests that she could do it herself. He had taken them to a small little restaurant off the beat and track. The sign atop the front door read Lorenzo's Little Italy. Queen held the door open for Holland to enter the establishment, "This place has the absolute best pizza in the entire city. It's hands down my favorite restaurant in Bludhaven. My dad used to bring me here when I was a kid."

He followed her in. The restaurant was dimly lit with a definite rustic, Italian charm to it. Large wood fired ovens could be seen through the expediter window and the bar had an impressive number of beers on tap. A large number of red wines were displayed in the large wine rack on the far wall. An elderly man with a short beard walked out from behind the kitchen to greet them. He had a deep, Italian accent that made his warm voice seem even friendlier, "Mr Conner! It is so good to see you!" The man looked from Conner to Holland before Queen even had a chance to respond, "And you brought company?! She is lovely!"

The elderly man took Holland's hand and kissed it gently, "I am Lorenzo! Mr. Conner is my best customer and any friend of his is a friend of mine. Come come! I will seat you immediately!" As the couple sat down across from one another in the small booth Lorenzo continued to jabber away, "Mr. Conner never brings guests with him! In fact the only other person I have ever seen him in here with was his father; Mr. Oliver! You must be something special!" Lorenzo winked at her and wandered off back to the kitchen. Conner smiled sheepishly at Holly, "Sorry about that. Lorenzo is a bit......enthusiastic at times."
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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Mir » Mon Aug 25, 2014 7:11 am

“Enthusiastic is an understatement.” Holly said, eyes widening for emphasis as she picked up the menu. The woman surveyed the offerings. Normal Italian restaurant fare, undoubtedly enhanced by the owner’s personal life and recipes. “So, you used to come here with your father?” She asked, and Conner nodded. “Tell me about him.” She said.

When he was silent for a few moments, she finally looked over the top of the menu at him, puzzled. Her eyes narrowed. “I don’t have a recorder, this isn’t an interview, Ace.” Holly said, rolling her eyes. His expression didn’t change, so she sighed. “You want to search me?” She asked.

He nodded his head, trying to maintain a serious façade.

“Well, you’re just going to have to trust me.” Holly said back.

“Darn. I was really aiming for the searching.”

“Everybody misses sometimes.” Holland replied with a shrug. “Father. Conversation. Spill it.” She said, going back to her menu. She was still trying to get a bead on him. Of course, Conner looked and acted the part of the rich guy who had too much time on his hands, but there was something more to it than that. There had been flashes of something, someone else back at the newspaper offices. Maybe there was something there, maybe there wasn’t. She was interested in getting to the bottom of it. Not because of a story, but because the whole thing just fascinated her.

Monica had told her the story of what the young Queen had been like, before he’d gone on that ill-fated trip. The man sitting in front of her, though he appeared to look like the same man, was decidedly not. He was tense. Primed for a fight.

He’d rearranged the cutlery so that he had faster access to his knife. Just in case. The way his posture was, how he was seated. To the average eye it would have looked like Conner was just lounging. But to Holland, who had had some defense training and had been in more than one brush with mercenaries while getting a story, the truth was far more prevalent. What gave it away was the windows.

The windows of the restaurant were created in such a way, that from how Conner was seated, he had a vantage point at anything that could come at them. He could also, with minimal effort, flip over the side of the booth, should something happen from the kitchen. While the idea of their getting attacked in a booth, in a pizza restaurant, in an affluent area, in Bludhaven, was mildly ridiculous, to Conner’s subconscious, it was a possibility. She would have dismissed the whole notion, had she not seen what she had seen during their interview.

“Come on, you can do it, Ace.” Holly said with a small smile.

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Wed Sep 03, 2014 8:44 pm

Conner nodded to himself before finally sighing. He looked at her eyes for a moment and something about her gaze made him feel comfortable, like he could trust her. The corner of his mouth curled into a slight smile as he spoke, "My dad was a lot of things. To the majority of the world he was the rich guy that had survived on a deserted island for three years after a boating accident. Before that he was something of a spoiled rich kid that ran around Star City like he owned the place."

Queen's smile became more prevalent, "He wasn't like that by the time I came around. He was an activist and a politician. He was actually the mayor of Star City for awhile. He said it was his favorite job. He enjoyed it much more than running Queen Industries." His eyes met hers and locked on, "Mostly he was just my dad. My best friend. I learned more from him then most kids learn from their parents."

His mind wandered to the archery and combat lessons. He had been forged into a soldier, but it had been done out of love not out of a desire to create a bloodthirsty weapon. His father had instilled a strict moral code within Conner. Something he had forgotten during his time with the Hand, "You should have met some of his friends, too. They were something of the most powerful and influential people on the planet. It was a real honor to meet a lot of them," Conner thought back on meeting several of the world's most incredible heroes. Many of them kept in touch with Oliver after he had given up the life. He remembered meeting Bruce Wayne and Clark Kent and feeling very small in the presence of the Dark Knight and the Man of Steel. He distinctly recalled Mr. Wayne telling him what a monumental responsibility it was to know the secret identities of some of these individuals, especially for a fifteen year old boy. He had met others as well; Hal Jordan, Barry Allen, John Jones, etc. Of course he learned that his dad's best friend, Roy Harper, had actually been Arsenal and later Red Arrow. He had also met Dinah Lance. He smiled at that thought of how much his mother hated that woman.

"Oliver Queen was the best man I've ever known. He was kind of my hero."
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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Mir » Thu Sep 11, 2014 1:53 pm

It was interesting to see the admiration that he had for his father. There was depth there, genuine depth, and for Holland, it was a marvel for her to witness. The mask dropped, the worry dropped, everything disappeared. All he was, in that moment, was a boy, talking about his father, and sharing the memories that he had. A powerful moment, to say the least.

“It sounds like you did. I’ve heard a lot about him.” She said. “He was very instrumental within the community. A really great business leader.”

“I hope to take after him in that regard.”

“Can’t do that when you’re out being a philandering party boy.” Holland replied with a smirk on her face.

“Maybe you haven’t heard, Queen Industries is expanding.” Conner said with a smile of his own, one that matched the one that she had. “We’re going to be running a huge campaign to help the city, and also, we bought the Daily Patriot. We’re going into the media industry.”

“Oh, I hadn’t. Maybe your newspaper isn’t that great.” Holland said, giving him a much different face.

“Guess I should fire some of the reporters.”

They were quiet for a moment, both having sly grins on their faces.

“So, since we’re talking about helping the community and what not, what do you think of all these…vigilantes and heroes and what not popping up?” She asked. “I mean, there’s a guy running around as Batman again. Been around for about a year now I think. Clearly, he’s not sanctioned by the cops. Monica, one of my coworkers was talking about a guy who does something similar in Bludhaven."

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Sun Sep 14, 2014 7:37 pm

Queen nodded his head. He had heard of the new Dark Knight in Gotham. Whoever he was he preceded Queen's vigilante debut by a few months. Despite Bludhaven and Gotham being so close neither man had made an effort to meet the other. Conner knew it was only a matter of time before the two crossed paths. He smiled at their server as she dropped of a basket of fresh made bread and some dipping oils. He offered Holland a plate and then the bread basket as he spoke, "You're referring to Green Arrow, though many have taken to just calling him the Arrow. No one really knows if he has any connection to the original out of Star City. He's only been around for a number of months. Less than a year I believe. Honestly, I don't know what to make of him. So far it looks like he is just trying to help."

Conner took some of the bread for himself. He took a bite of the warm food and smiled. He really did love this restaurant, "From what I know he only takes on the bad guys. Normally I would say the police should be left alone to handle the criminals in any city. But what happens when the police are ill-equipped to handle certain individuals? What happens then? I mean, we have some super strong guy with a couple of hammers running around this city somewhere. His last encounter with the police he took down an entire SWAT team and a spattering of other officers. From what I read there was literally nothing Bludhaven's finest could do to stop the guy."

He took another bite of bread and washed it down with some water before continuing, "I don't really have the answer but I do know that someone needs to be able to stand up to the guys that conventional law enforcement can't do anything about."
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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Nichalus » Tue Sep 16, 2014 9:06 am

Evan Stone sat quietly and inconspicuously on the far side of the pizza shop from Queen and his female guest, looking at a iPad while eating a slice of the pizza...which was actually quite good. The prosthetic eye was the perfect piece of equipment for him to blend in with his prey, after all, he would be very noticeable and remembered as most people do not like to see changes to their surroundings, and a man with an eye-patch was quickly remembered. But this prosthetic eye was a marvel of technology, while only a very close inspection would see it as so, his was perfectly matched to his good eye, but within was a neural interface that was connected directly to his own brain, completely with a highly scrambled and encrypted wi-fi receiver that was bounced off of several dozen hot spots all over the world.

Evan looked down at his iPad and saw the picture of the woman sitting with Queen, along with a detailed file on her. He smiled as he read that she was a top reporter from the Daily Patriot. Perfect...

It was only a couple days out from his mission with the Morricone situation. The news was blazing with the story, from both paper and cable. It was the best PR that money could buy, and a warning to those that hired him would know that he meant business, and any interference from even his own employer, would be met with equal enthusiasm. When he had arrived back at his base of operations, he had found a new contract waiting for him. He had immediately traced the message, scanned it and began pulling up detailed files and what he found did not impress him. Robert Griffin was just another wanna be millionaire that thought money could buy him anything. While his company was powerful, it was not through hard work and good business decisions. It was through bullying, bribes and murder. The latter was the reason for the contract, the message stated simply....Connor Queen.

Connor Queen on the other hand was something much more...interesting. It was not the fact that Connor had disappeared for several years, young millionaire often did such thing, not so much for attention, but merely because they could. It did not take Evan's enhanced mind to figure out there was something deeper going on inside the thinking of the millionaire playboy. Evan had done his job, backtracking his movements up to the time he disappeared, the manner of the disappearance itself... and found absolutely nothing, and considering his sources, the mere fact that he found nothing was an answer unto itself. This boy had secrets, and Evan did not like secrets. Secrets had a tenancy of fucking things up and making a mess of things. If there is one thing Evan didn't like, it was messy work.

So upon his arrival to Bludhaven, he had begun tracking the young millionaire, watching him, studying patterns, and again...he found nothing unusual. That is until he happened to be in a warehouse in The Glades, as he was also watching Mr. Griffin. There was a slight movement in the rafters, a minuscule motion that the average person would never have noticed, but Deathstroke was far from the average man. He had done with homework about the new Green Arrow prior to arrival in Bludhaven, but did not have but a few various theories about the new archer. That is until that motion gave him away.

Deathstroke kept perfectly still in his shadowed corner of the very same rafters where the Arrow hid. Immediately his enhanced mind began picking apart the man across from him. The fact that Deathstroke had not noticed him at first was telling him that this Arrow was trained in the art of concealment and shadows. This Arrow was patient, unlike the prior Green Arrow who reports stated was quick to fly off the handle in situations. But the fact that this Arrow had not noticed him, showed that he was still somewhat new to this game and still had some amateurish burrs that left him open to some weakness.

As the bosses and their entourages left, Deathstroke stayed still, watching the Arrow as he cautiously left the warehouse. Deathstroke shadowed the Arrow across rooftops, stopping quietly as the Arrow would suddenly stop and check his six to make sure he was not being followed. Deathstroke noted these highly trained and learned habits, as he built his own internal file on him. Then he saw it, a slight swagger in the Arrow's walk, a certain way that he moved his hands. He had seen these movements before...in Connor Queen. He computed in his mind that their was a 87.4% certainty in his assessment. Deathstroke didn't like the 12.6% hanging out there in the open, and thus that is what brought him to a certain pizza shop today.

The three large men stepped into the pizza shop on time, each of them wearing well-made dress jackets with white t-shirts underneath with neatly pressed slacks, Evan was impressed that they even matched for the price that he paid them for this little recon. He had of course arranged this event through one of Griffin's lower level boys, who in turned was paid handsomely to arrange for this, what Even hoped would be enlightening, event.

One of the large men stepped over to the counter, while his two brethren stood by the door watching everyone else. Once at the counter the man snatched the owner by the front of his shirt and pulled him over the counter roughly, and slammed him on the floor. He reached down and grabbed him by the front of his shirt again and pulled him up to face him.

"The boss says you ain't paid yer dues. I'm here to collect."
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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Thu Sep 18, 2014 8:54 pm

Conner and Holland both watched as the three large men entered the restaurant, two of them taking up residence by the front door while the third approached the counter. Lorenzo clearly looked distraught to see them and his expression turned to terror as the man pulled him across the counter and slammed his back against it. Conner frowned as he visually took in his surroundings, as he had done when he first entered. He gripped his table knife tightly as he prepared to act, but his instincts halted him as he noticed something out of place. Every single person in the building had their eyes glued to the unfolding events before them. Every single person except for one. There was a man on the far side of the restaurant who, though subtly, was watching Conner. Something was very clearly amiss.

The man up front slammed Lorenzo against the counter again. Queen felt sympathy for the older man but the revelation that he was being observed by another stayed his hand. At least, in the direct sense. With a subtle motion that the man across the restaurant wouldn't notice he signaled Grid to notify the police of what was transpiring. It would only take them a few minutes to respond. However, Conner needed to make a show of it. Whoever this man was he clearly had suspicions about Queen. He already had one mystery on his hands in the form of the hooded individual from the warehouse. Now he had a second. He needed to throw this man off his scent. He stood up despite Holland's silent pleadings, "Hey! Whatever he owes I'd be more than happy to pay. Just let him go."

The three men turned their attention to Queen. The leader stepped forward, turning and smiling at his companions, "You're going to pay off his debt, huh, pretty boy? You don't even know how much he owes. It could be more than you could afford."

Conner shook his head, "Trust me, money is no object."

The man laughed, "Rich guy, eh? Who do you think you are? Conner Queen? Maybe Isiah Muir?" He looked at his friends, "I think we've got Alex Burke over here," He turned back to Conner, "Rich guy that thinks he can be a hero."

Conner resisted the urge to smile at the man's comment. Not only did he fail to realize that he actually did have Conner Queen in front of him but he was also a wealthy super hero as well. The irony was quite palpable. The large man threw a right hook that caught Queen in the face, sending him to the ground. In reality he could have easily dodge or parried the attack but he needed to really sell this. The man stepped toward Conner again and Queen put up his hand in a motion to stop the attack. Before another blow could be delivered two individuals burst through the door, one man and one woman. The man had a gun raised and was the first to speak, "Bludhaven PD! Get your hands up and get down on your knees! now!"

The leader did as he was told, the gun pointed at him. His two companions moved to relieve the officer of his weapon. His female companion, a blonde woman in a black leather jacket intervened. She dispatched both large men with ease, dropping them to the ground and handcuffing both of them in less than a minute. Everyone in the room, including Conner, was impressed. Queen realized the other officer was Robert Walker, his contact in the police department and the Organized Crime Task Force. The two officers handcuffed the third man and by that time two patrol units had arrived, taking the criminals away. Conner had migrated back to the table, nursing his bruised face. He stood in front of Holland and looked at her in a concern manner, "Are you okay?"
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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Mir » Sat Sep 20, 2014 10:39 am

“I’m fine…fine.” Holland said, and looked up at him, at the injury that he’d sustained. “What about you though?” She asked, reaching a hand up to his face.

“I’m alright.” He replied with a smile. “Nothing I won’t do for some great pizza.” He said, wincing slightly when she touched the bruise. The guy who had punched him had hit him with a ring on, so it was smarting more than just an average punch. It had broken the skin a little bit, and he was bleeding slightly, the welt around it growing in size.

“We should get you to a hospital, just to take a look at it.” Holland said.

“No, no, I’m fine.” He said. Looking around, Conner could see the cops in the area, and he knew that they’d want to talk to him about what had happened. “Look, why don’t we get out of here?” He asked. “I’ll make sure that everything is okay with Lorenzo tomorrow.”

Not convinced, Holland nodded, though her eyes were on the wound that he’d sustained. “Okay, sure I guess.” She said.

They were walking out with some of the other customers, who were eager to get away from the crime scene, when Holland clutched at her stomach, doubling over.

“Are you okay?” Conner asked, concerned.

“Not sure, I feel…like…food pois…” She said, and dry heaved a few times. “Ace, we’re going to the hospital anyway.”

The man with the eye patch watched from a distance, unseen by all with a smile on his face. Like clockwork...

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Sun Sep 28, 2014 10:49 am

Conner gripped her shoulders tightly and helped her stand. He was concerned. Food poisoning didn't typically come on that strongly all at once, however, he wasn't a doctor. He assisted Holland into the Jeep and then climbed into the driver's seat. As he pulled out of the parking spot he saw the female officer in the black leather jacket watch them drive away from the front of the restaurant. He frowned. He had been hoping to escape without being noticed. However, Holland's need for a hospital would prove to be a compelling reason for leaving should the police come to question him.

Holland continued to grip her stomach throughout the drive. Uncharacteristically, Conner continued to rub her back in an effort to soothe her. He couldn't help but feel like any potential love life he may have was slightly cursed. This was the first woman in some time he had been interested in that hadn't tried to kill him. Instead, date number one resulted in Conner being assaulted and his date going to the hospital for food poisoning. He pulled into the emergency room parking lot and helped Holland from the vehicle to the help desk where a larger woman was sitting in anticipation of the next emergency, "Hi. We need to see a doctor. She believes she has food poisoning."
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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Tue Sep 30, 2014 1:11 pm

Bludhaven International Airport

First class was always a wonderful feeling. For so long he had been used to shit hole hotels and riding in freight trains to get from point A to point B. No longer though. Previously he had needed to remain hidden. He had something valuable that needed to be protected. That was no longer the case. It had been stolen from him and he would never be able to get it back. This fact had set him on a path of vengeance against the man responsible. But more than that it had freed him from his prior responsibilities. It had granted the greatest gift.....the ability to operate as himself, completely unhindered and unchecked. The man stepped off of the boarding ramp and into the terminal, readjusting his silk tie as he did. He wore a dark grey suit with a white shirt, all of which was extremely expensive. He didn't have a carry on nor any other luggage. Everything he needed he all ready carried with him.

He stepped out of one of the many rotating glass doors. The night air was cool and crisp. He inhaled deeply and took a moment to take in the city lights. He had arrived in Bludhaven. He had arrived in the city of his enemy. Or more accurately.......his enemies. A bald man wearing a black suit approached him, "Adrian Greene, I presume?"

The handsome man who had just exited the airport nodded his head, "Mr. Snyder. It is a pleasure to meet you in person. Is everything prepared?"

Snyder nodded, "It is. The car is waiting over here, sir. Your contacts in the city have confirmed your suspicions."

Adrian climbed into the back seat of the limo. Snyder following suit as the driver held the door open for both men, "So, the Hand has come to Bludhaven in search of their wayward brother. Perfect. I'm assuming you have put the first part of the plan into motion?"

Mr. Snyder picked up a folder on the seat next to him and handed it to Adrian, "I have. The bounty on the Arrow has been listed and those are the individuals who have thus far responded."

Greene flipped through the personality pages and smiled. "These individuals will certainly keep the archer busy for a time."
"I'd like to nominate Cazzik for the Sexiest Man on Earth 2010." --Balsa

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Mir » Tue Oct 07, 2014 6:28 am

The woman took a look at Holland, who did a little wave and gave her a slightly painful, slightly cheerful smile.

“Still gotta fill out the forms.” She said, and reached for a clipboard.

“Ma’am, I don't know if you know this, but I’m…Conner Queen.” Conner said, flashing a winning smile. It had melted the hearts of women all around the world. Twice in some cases. “Surely there’s a doctor available for my friend.” He said.

“Look blondie, I don’t care if you’re Christopher Chase,” the large woman said. “Everybody fills out the forms.” She said. “And he’s in a wheelchair.” She added, giving Conner a look.

“I’ll put you in a wheelchair.” Conner muttered under his breath, taking the clipboard and the food poisoned woman to a seat. As it didn’t appear as if Holland would be able to actually write anything, he started writing down the pertinent information, with her giving vague suggestions. “Parents?” He asked.

“Jason and Camille. Don’t really talk to them that much though. Probably should. Family is important, right?” She asked.

Conner realized this was going to be the greatest way to get her life story out of her, since otherwise she was very private and dodgy. Despite the fact that he kind of liked dodgy, considering his real job.

“Of course it is. Family is all we have at the end of the day. Siblings?”

“Only child. You have horrible handwriting.” Holly said, lifting her head up enough to see the clipboard.

“Well, we don’t want to write the answers in vomit, so you can’t do it. Besides, I have a press pass now. I'm a guardian of truth and a seeker of justice.” He said.

“You are full of non-funny jokes.” She replied.

“I only had to amuse myself for all those years on the island. I’d like to think I’m hilarious.”

“Better than Leno, at least.” Holland admitted with a nod of her head that made the room spin and made her instantly regret the decision.

“Everyone’s better than Leno.” Conner said, writing down some of the questions he knew, like her address. “Who’s your emergency contact?” He asked.

“Let me think for a second. I think it's...Ky…Wow, that’s old, I should change that.” Holly said. “Ex-boyfriend. Not the nicest of persons. Chris Frazier didn’t live long enough to become an emergency contact. Funny, old boyfriends of mine tend to die or disappear.” She said. She paused. “That’s morbid.”

There had to be a follow up there, but the large woman behind the desk was calling Holland’s name.

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Mon Nov 03, 2014 6:26 pm

Conner helped Holland to her feet and began assisting her toward the nurse holding the door open. He paused as his cell phone began to ring. He could tell from the ringtone that it was not a call for Conner Queen. It was someone trying to get into contact with Green Arrow. The number had been rerouted through several alternative satellites by Grid in order to prevent anyone from discovering his identity. He looked at Holland, "I'll be right out here as soon as you're finished. I promise."

He gave her a winning smile and turned to the nurse, "Take good care of her. We never got to finish our date."

As the pair walked through the doors Conner's smile faded and he pulled out the phone and walked out the front door of the emergency room. As he answered he stepped off to the side where no one could hear him, activating the sound digitizer to disguise his voice on the other end, "Mr. Mayor. What is it?"

Alan White was the Mayor of Bludhaven and a staunch, though secret, supporter of the Arrow and his war on crime. Along with Sergeant Walker he was one of the most valuable allies Queen had in his crusade. He was an intelligent man that wanted nothing more than to clean up his city and provide a better quality of life for his people, "Arrow, I'm really hoping you are all ready aware of whats happening downtown. Please tell me you're on it."

Conner's eyes narrowed, "I've been dealing with some thugs down in the Hollows. Crime families are attempting to collect extra protection money. What is happening downtown?"

The Mayor's voice was shaky, "There have been attacks. Four that we know about. Police are out in force but I don't think they are equipped to handle this."

Queen continued to press for more information, "What kind of attacks? Who is behind them?"

"We have no idea who is behind all of them. They don't seem to have anything in common other than taking place at the same time. An explosion at the Bludhaven National Bank took place first. The police are engaged in a fire fight at the Four Towers Mall in Pearl Ridge with a group of heavily armed gunmen under the command of some ninja lady in orange armor. That crazy thug for hire, Jack Hammer, is tearing through buildings and law enforcement down on 6th and Atlantic and there is a hostage situation at the Victoria King Museum of Art. The whole damn city just went crazy at the exact same time," the Mayor finally paused for a breath.

Queen remained silent for a moment. He was prioritizing the attacks in his mind. The explosion at the bank had happened. He couldn't prevent it at this point. The police were in a standoff at both the mall and the museum. They would need his assistance. However, there was no one else in the city capable of taking down Hammer. He was a super strong meta-human with nigh invulnerable skin. The police were not equipped to handle him. 6th and Atlantic would have to be his first stop, "Have any of them made any demands?"

The mayor's voice came back, "You. They have all demanded we deliver the Arrow to them."

Conner's face tightened, "Well, let's not keep them waiting."

He turned and headed back into the hospital to come up with some excuse as to why he would have to bail on Holland. More than likely she wouldn't take it well but there was nothing he could do about it right now. The city need Green Arrow more than his date needed Conner Queen.
"I'd like to nominate Cazzik for the Sexiest Man on Earth 2010." --Balsa

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Mir » Mon Nov 17, 2014 8:14 am

The night was different here.

It wasn’t the same and he hated it. Nowhere on earth was as beautiful as Gotham City. Ree could argue differently, and he probably would. But it was a fact of life that no city on earth was more beautiful than Gotham. Granted, Gotham was also the dirtiest and had probably the worst crime rate in America, but there was ways to fix that. Ways that involved tracking shipments of guns and weapons that attempted to move through his city. Shipments that used Bludhaven as a stopping ground on their serpentine path through the criminal underground.

Shipments that had trackers on them, so that he could find them, wherever they went, whenever he wanted.

Batman reached a hand up and pressed a button on the side of his cowl. The lenses that flipped down over his eyes were powerful, and had a small GPS map built into them. He had Gotham City memorized. Every corner, every fire hydrant, every bus stop, they were all ingrained in his brain. But Bludhaven, he was not that familiar with. It was something to consider. Then again, he didn’t really have a reason to come to Bludhaven. Metropolis he was starting to memorize.

The vehicle was moving down one of the main streets. They were following the rules of the road, and everything seemed in order. No Bludhaven Police Department officer would have stopped them, because nothing seemed suspicious. Not to Batman, though, who fired his grappling hook and swung into the night. Flying over the rooftops, his cape was splayed all around him, acting as drag to keep him from over-shooting his target. If his research was correct, the people driving this van would not be stopping for the night in Bludhaven. Therefore, if he didn’t stop them now, he would not be able to get the information that he needed back in Gotham.

With an audible thud, he landed on the roof of the van. The driver started to swerve, as the newfound presence was one that all of the van’s occupants were able to pick up on.

Some time ago, Isaiah had structured a highly lucrative contract with an African nation regarding the import and export of goods. One of the things that Wayne Enteprises imported from the country were metals that were dug up out of the ground. The country was Wakanda, and the metal was Vibranium. He had structured the deal not just because it was money making for both sides, but because it allowed him to appropriate high amounts of Vibranium for himself. The redesign of the Batsuit had taken all of this into account.

The tips of his gloves were retractable claws, claws made out of Vibranium.

Claws that ripped through the top of the van.

“Pull over.” He said.

“How about no?” One of the occupants said, reaching for one of the semi automatics that was in the van. “I wanted to test these out. Didn’t know I’d get a chance against you Batman.”

“If you kill me, at least the going rate for them will skyrocket.” Batman said, reaching into his belt.

The driver was still swerving, and mag locks on his boots were keeping him firmly rooted to the van’s roof. It would have to take a lot more effort to dislodge him. However, it wouldn’t that much to disrupt the driver. Batman dropped two pellets into the van and then leapt off.

Combination flash bangs and smoke grenades, the little devils went off.

As he back-flipped through the air and landed on the ground, Batman watched as the van careened off the side of the road, and slammed into the ground floor shopping display of a mall. The Four Towers mall, his GPS told him, not that that made any difference to him. Sprinting forward, Batman ran into the mall, mildly pissed that it was still decently well lit. The van had turned on it’s side, and he could hear the groans coming from the inside.

That was when he saw that bigger situation.

There was a woman, dressed in orange armor, wielding a katana who was in the process of decapitating a police officer.

This then was a crisis of priority for Batman. He could care less what happened in Bludhaven on the whole. Gotham City was his priority. That being said, he couldn’t stand by while people were hurt. It went against his core and what he had vowed to fight for. Jumping forward, he dove towards the woman, tackling her.

“Katana.” He said.

“Batman.” She replied.

They had tangled before. She was an interesting foe, and one that he had gained a modicum of respect for. Her movements were quick and as Batman engaged her, he was trying to see how fast he could restrain her so that he could get back to the real reason that he was in Bludhaven. Ducking a slash from her blade, he moved out of the way and countered with a solid punch to her side.

He noticed that the police officers had backed down, forming something of a perimeter so that they could observe and contain the fight between the two.

“I don’t have time for this.” Batman said.

“Got a hot date?” She asked with a smirk in reply, as her blade hit his gauntlets and a few sparks shot in the air. “Don’t say it’s with justice.”

He merely glared in response and lashed out with a booted foot, an attack that she blocked with the flat side of her sword. She did a standing jump and her feet shot out, hitting him square in the chest. Batman went backwards, using the momentum to his advantage by turning it into a backflip. Landing on the ground, he moved forward, keeping his shoulder low with a simple shoulder tackle. Katana had rushed towards him. The key to beating her was not to fight on her level. Her strength was her training, but she wasn’t able to counter a style that was based on unpredictable brawling. If he tried to use a more refined way of fighting, she would be able to analyze it and try to find weaknesses.

They’d counter each other into oblivion.

But the brawler style afforded him strengths that overwhelmed her. She tried a downwards katana strike and he caught it between the blades on the side of his gauntlets. His eyes on hers he smiled.

“Fell for it again.” He said, and wrenched his arms in opposite directions. Japanese tempered steel went up against a titanium vibranium alloy and was found wanting, snapping the blade. Another solid kick to her midsection tossed her backwards into a glass display. “What are you here for.” He said, walking forward, as she lay there. “You’re above robbing malls. There’s no money here anyway, the angles are too dangerous.”

“I’m not here for the money. I’m here for Arrow.” She said, and he cocked his head to the side. “You don’t think you’re the only freak who thinks he can stop crime in a city, do you?” She asked.

“No. I think I’m the only one who does it correctly.” Batman replied, tossing a small pellet towards her. It split open and separated into a long filament that wrapped itself around her.

The police officers started cautiously walking towards him. Undoubtedly many of them had heard of him, but at the same time that didn’t mean that they would trust him. There were cops in Gotham City that didn’t trust him. Only the people in the Major Crimes Unit, under Steven Santieri really trusted him.

A grappling hook shot outwards and he was moving through the air, up above them.

He landed close to where the van had crashed into the mall, and his mouth thinned even further, a difficult feat.

The men who had been inside, and the weapons, were all gone.

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Mon Dec 01, 2014 12:43 pm

The admissions attendant wouldn't allow Conner to go back to see Holland because he was not family. He didn't have the time to stay and argue. He asked her to relay a message for him. An emergency came up at Queen Industries and he was needed immediately to assist with the situation. His driver, John Portman, would be arriving shortly and would take Holland home as soon as she was released. Conner would call her as soon as he was able to check up on her. He left the hospital quickly and climbed into his Jeep, driving off. A tinge of guilt attempted to eat away at him but he pushed it away, burying it deep. There could be no distractions when he was in the field. His survival, and that of others, depended on hoim always being focused. He didn't have time to make it back to the main bunker where he stored the majority of his gear; a location that John liked to refer to as the Quiver, much to Conner's dismay. Instead, he would need to stop at one of his safe houses. He had multiple of mini-bunkers set up all over the city just in case he ever needed to regroup or he was unable to get to his main headquarters. He was now exceptionally happy that he had taken the time to establish them.

He pulled down an alley and jumped out of the vehicle, sprinting through a door into an abandoned restaurant. Although his main bunker was extremely well set up, these smaller ones, for the most part, simply held the bare necessities. At some point he would need to rectify that. He opened the hatch that led down to the old storage area of the restaurant and locked it behind him. It was dusty down below but it had served its purpose. He pulled his combat gear out of its case and quickly dressed before moving onto his weapons. He grabbed a pair of eskrima sticks, combat knives, several throwing blades, and a repeating crossbow. He walked over to the wall where the compound bow hung and picked it up. It wasn't his preferred weapon but it would have to do. He was unable to get to his primary bow at the moment. He strapped on one of the quivers and attached two backups to the motorcycle he had stored in the bunker. He climbed onto the bike and pulled up his hood. He was fully prepared for the streets of Bludhaven. He raced up and out of the sidewalk which used to be the delivery area for the restaurant. He triggered the lock on the bunker as he sped away.

He checked to make sure Grid was online and that John was able to communicate when needed. Portman was not happy about being forced to drive Holland home while parts of the city were under attack. He obeyed the order nonetheless. Green Arrow quickly converged on 6th and Atlantic. As he grew closer he could hear gunfire and explosions. He sailed through the police barricade and could hear audible cheers from several of the officers upon his arrival. He leaped from the bike and fired two arrows with explosive tips at his adversary. They hit Jack Hammer square in the chest and forced him backwards away from the police officers he was attempting to kill. The large meta-human took a moment to collect himself before setting his gaze upon the hero. He smiled menacingly, "Arrow! Of all the threats we set up tonight I'm honored you decided to try and take me first! I owe you from the last time you sent me to prison!" Jack lifted the two massive hammers he wielded as weapons and let the smile fade from his face, "I'm going to crush every bone in your body, archer!"

Conner narrowed his eyes and did not reply. Jack Jones, aka Jack Hammer, was incredibly strong and durable. However, he was not overly bright and his combat skills were rudimentary, often relying on a brawling style that allowed him to use his strength to his advantage. Arrow had beaten him before and he would do so again. But he needed to take him down quickly so he could assist at the other sites. Hammer charged the hero in a fit of rage. Conner reacted instinctively, firing off three arrows, all with explosive tips. The projectiles found their mark and Jack was forced backwards. Queen needed to keep him away from the police before he had a chance to hospitalize anymore of them. Arrow sprinted at his enemy and Hammer shook off the previous attack and brought both weapons down overhead in an effort to kill his nemesis. The hero was too quick. He hit the ground and slid underneath Hammer, quickly attaching two explosives to the inside of both of the mercenary's ankles. He climbed to his feet in a single motion and backflipped away as Jack brought one of the hammers around in a horizontal attack. As Arrow landed he triggered the explosives which sent Jack's legs out to either side of him, effectively forcing the meta-human to do the splits. The thug cried out in pain and slowly dragged himself up. Conner allowed himself a slight smile. As Jack attempted to recover Arrow fired three more arrows which effectively ended the fight. The first was a bola that entangled the man's feet, the second hit him square in the face and released a gas that would render him unconscious for the next several hours, and the third and final arrow released another bola, wrapping up Jack's arms and chest. Arrow was back on his bike and speeding away as Hammer hit the ground.

"Grid, threat evaluation on the remaining three sites."

The automated voice rang through his transceiver, "The fire and gunmen at the Bludhaven National Bank have been subdued by police forces with the assistance of Black Canary of ARGUS. Criminal forces at the Four Tower Mall have been subdued and arrested. Police reports state Batman arrived on the scene and took the criminals down."

Arrow was a little dumbfounded. Batman and Black Canary were both in Bludhaven. In his city. Why they were here would need to wait for another time. He needed to get to the Victoria King museum and assist police.
"I'd like to nominate Cazzik for the Sexiest Man on Earth 2010." --Balsa

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Fri Jan 09, 2015 10:47 pm

The Victoria King museum was massive and the criminals inside had turned it into a literal fortress with their hostages spread out across both wings. Conner had arrived a moment ago, stashing his bike in an alley and going in quietly. He had his crossbow out which was capable of rapid fire; an advantage he was going to use in this situation. He slipped in through the basement and began working his way up. Three gunmen were taken out silently. His weapon firing bolts with electrified tips, downing his adversaries immediately and rendering them unconscious. Upon examination the gunmen seemed to be regular thugs. Maybe mercenaries. He continued making his way through the basement level, taking down several more individuals with little effort and extreme prejudice. He needed to find whoever was calling the shots and figure out what all of this was. Someone was assaulting his city looking for him and he needed to know why.

As he made his way up one of the stairwells he heard gunfire above him followed by yelling. He quickened his pace and entered the main level through a maintenance door. He saw several of Bludhaven's finest on the ground; dead. A few others were on their knees, hands behind their heads. They had clearly been defeated. Among them he saw Sergeant Walker. The man was bleeding from the side of his head. The Arrow narrowed his eyes and prepared to move in. A crash from above and falling glass stayed his hand. An ear splitting sound erupted all around them, though it seemed to be concentrated in the middle of the room where the armed thugs were now cowering. A gorgeous, blonde woman in a black combat suit slid down the rope that had fallen with the glass. She hit the ground and quickly dispatched her adversaries. She quickly turned to the police officers, "I told you to wait for me, James."

Sergeant Walker climbed to his feet and retrieved his firearm, "We waited as long as we could. Besides, the rest of us didn't think one person was going to make a difference. Maybe if you had told me you were some kind of super hero I would've listened."

Canary shook her head, "I'm not a super hero. I'm an agent of ARGUS. And I'm your partner. You should have waited for me based on that alone."

Walker shrugged, "Fair enough." Canary turned quickly as Walker's face turned grim. Several black clad individuals swarmed out of a door way. None of them were dressed as the previous group had been. These men were all wearing identical combat gear with something of a ninja-inspired theme to them. They moved in a cohesive pattern, like they were linked to one another. Arrow continued to watch from the shadows and his heart slowly sank deeper into his chest. He recognized these uniforms, these movements. These men were once his brothers. This threat he now faced was the Hand. He holstered his crossbow and drew out his compound weapon. He frowned as he realized he could kill at least 9 of them before they had a chance to defend themselves. Killing was no longer his way. He was not an assassin anymore. He was a protector of the people now. This would need to be done another way.

A dark figure emerged from the doorway. His armor was similar to his brethren but also slightly different. It was to distinguish him from everyone else. This man was a higher ranking member of the Hand. He stared at the police and his voice carried an icy tone, "The infamous Black Canary." He began circling the group like a predator waiting to pounce, "We set up this assault to lure out someone else. Someone who betrayed us. However, should he not show my master will be pleased with your capture. After all, you have had a habit of interfering with our organization on several occasions over the years, haven't you?"

Canary smiled slightly, "If I had interfered with you and yours it was completely by accident. ARGUS doesn't generally bother with the little fish." The Arrow smiled slightly at the jab. Faced with such odds the woman still felt the need to insult her enemy. If she had half the skills the original Black Canary did she had already earned the right to mouth of to pretty much anyone she wanted to. On another note Green Arrow had identified the man in front of him as the same individual in the warehouse the other night with Robert Griffin. The Hand was making a major play for power in Bludhaven and he needed to know why. It couldn't all be just to get to him, could it?

He couldn't allow the officers or the Canary to come to harm. He needed to make a move and he needed to do it soon. As he notched an arrow he noticed something in the shadows close to him. A movement. A dark figure. Without raising his weapon he spoke in a hushed tone, "I know you're there. Your ability to conceal yourself is impressive."
"I'd like to nominate Cazzik for the Sexiest Man on Earth 2010." --Balsa

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Nichalus » Thu Jan 15, 2015 11:20 am

"Considering I've been making movements up here for the last several minutes that even a deaf man could have heard, I was afraid that you had on some Beats earbuds, listening to P Diddy, I'm glad you finally noticed." A voice whispered out from the darkness, but it was not the gruff irritated tone of the Batman that he heard. This voice was tinged with actual humor, swarmy and arrogant as it may be, but it was definitely not the Bat.

"Now, my next question is....what are you doing in my city. Starling is about a hundred or so miles away."

Easing out slightly from the shadow allowing the lighting to glint off his black tactical armor plated suit, Arrow could now see the lean and muscular figure, who wore a black eye piece mask with striking blue eyes peering back at him.

"Listen...I don't hav..." Arrow began and then the dark blue emblem of a bird on the intruder's chest flashed in the light. "...impossible. Your dead."

"Am I?" Nightwing answered back with a slight grin. "For a ghost, I look pretty damn good."

"Actually, your both making too much god damn noise." The very familiar gruff and irritated voice from behind them, causing them both to turn toward it in controlled surprise. "In case it missed your collective minds, you're outnumbered down there." Batman continued.

"How the hell does a man that big move so quietly?" Nightwing snickered.
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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Mir » Thu Jan 15, 2015 2:41 pm

"Practice."

"Are you planning on helping me with the numbers down there, or are you going to be an ass about it." Arrow said, speaking from the side of his mouth while keeping his arrow notched. "Because either way, in five seconds, I'm going to let the arrow fly."

"That's a perfect catchphrase. 'Let the arrow fly.' It's got a nice ring to it." Nightwing said, producing two black escrima sticks.

"And you're the leader of the parade with those batons." Arrow said, with a smirk, despite himself.

"Five seconds is up." Batman said. "Make a move. Maybe I help, maybe I watch." He added, before disappearing. Both men were able to see him running to a different vantage point.

Nightwing moved away as well, so that they would be able to strike simultaneously from three different angles.

He let the arrow fly.

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Sun Jan 18, 2015 2:26 pm

The projectile erupted from the compound bow and flew with an accuracy that was borderline supernatural. In midflight it exploded into four smaller darts, each hitting a different adversary, electrifying them on contact. Before the rest of the Hand ninjas could react Green Arrow had fired off another projectile the hit the leader square in the chest, releasing a bola. The man hit the ground, clearly surprised and angry at the assault, unable to counter the attack due to being incapacitated. Arrow leaped into the room, both of his feet connecting with the faces of two different adversaries, knocking them to the floor. He let fly two throwing knives during the maneuver that connected with their targets, taking out their primary sword arms. As he landed he brought out both of his larger combat blades and proceeded to move through his enemies with a grace that seemed beyond the skills of someone born of privilege. He was careful to not make any killing strokes. He simply made sure they were unable to continue their fight.

More and more of the ninjas continued to flow through the door. The Arrow was uncertain of just how many the Hand had sent in. Obviously enough to start a small war. As he turned to bring down another of his brothers he was beaten to the punch by the Black Canary. He took a brief moment to admire her skills. She was a combatant of the highest degree, able to hold her own against the horde of shadow warriors threatening to overwhelm them all. Behind her was Sergeant Walker who, despite being less skilled then Canary, Arrow, Nightwing, or the Bat, was continuing to make progress against one adversary at a time. Conner turned his attention back to the swarming Hand army. This was the first time he was actually pleased to have others working alongside him.
"I'd like to nominate Cazzik for the Sexiest Man on Earth 2010." --Balsa

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Nichalus » Thu Jan 22, 2015 9:08 am

Nightwing leapt from his perch, throwing a deadly accurate escrima stick in front of him that took out one Hand soldier with a painful sounding 'thock' on his forehead, which in turned caused the Hand's finger to twitch involuntarily on the trigger of his weapon and taking down two more of them.

He landed on the shoulder's of the mercenary with the growing lump on his forehead, cushioning his fall, rolling forward while scooping up his errant escrima and sweeping his leg to take down another Hand, then finishing with a knife-hand chop to the downed Hand's throat.

He kick-flipped to his feet, his escrima sticks tips pulsed with blue energy, as several Hand soldiers rushed at him. The first of them found the tip of Nightwing's escrima stick jabbed into his chest, and the taser-charged tip of the stick flashed with a faint buzz. The first thing that happened was the soldier urinated himself, thus conducting the taser-charge to cascade down the man's legs, and comically jitterbug his legs as he fell to the floor face first.

The two remaining Hands leapt forward towards Nightwing, hoping to overpower the nimble hero, but Nightwing had other plans, as he rolled forward, while at the same time clicked the two ends of his escrima sticks together, toggling a hidden switch the two sticks magnetically sealed together and elongated into a quarter staff. At the end of his roll, he placed the middle of the staff at the ball of his feet and shoved forward, catching both assailants in the midsection, then used them own momentum to flip them over his head and slam against the wall behind him with a breath expelling impact.

Taking a quick look around the room, he spied what he was looking for, and then flipped a wingding projectile at the fire alarm button and setting it off. Immediately the protective coverings over the more expensive artworks slid into place and keep them safe.

"Bruce, you always said to always think about your surroundings, and protecting the irreplaceable, even in the middle of a fight." Nightwing muttered with a wry smile.
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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Mir » Mon Jan 26, 2015 12:29 pm

The was a dark blur that moved around the room, striking from various points. He allowed his new found allies to absorb the brunt of the attacks, and he struck from the shadows, making short work of those who he had chosen for disassembling. They were ninjas, yes, but they were not like the ninjas that he had faced before. Shadows belonged to the League, and he was well versed in that knowledge. He was the Batman and like a gardener cutting blossoms from a tree or plant, he cultivated a bouquet of fallen Hand ninjas. At one moment, he dropped next to the Black Canary and a well placed boot shattered the jaw of a Hand ninja that would have struck her.

"We could use a Canary cry." He said, and then he was gone, his grappling hook taking him up into the rafters.

"What the...I can't do that." She said.

He appeared behind her, and Canary swirled, her eyes widening.

"Yes you can, Kayla Evans." Batman replied and then turned, loosing three batarangs that knocked down an oncoming trio of ninjas. He turned back. "We both know you can."

Then he was gone again.

She looked around and realized that he had a point. The waves of Hand ninjas didn't see to be slowing or stopping, and the ebb of the tide was going to prove too much for the combatants, no matter how good they were. Something had to change, something had to shift.

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Sun Feb 01, 2015 3:10 pm

Nightwing continued to flip through the ranks of their enemies; masterfully taking down opponents left and right. He seemed completely untouchable, as did the others, until they realized they were unable to withstand the continuing onslaught. As the blue and black clad hero took down another adversary two arrows flew past on either side of his head, piercing two separate enemies directly behind him. The warrior looked up and nodded in the direction of Green Arrow, who returned the gesture before he turned to face down more of the Hand soldiers.

**********

Canary knew Batman was right. They needed her abilities now but what the Dark Knight didn't seem to realize was that a cry of that magnitude could not only kill their enemies closest to her but it could also bring down the entire museum on top of them all. She executed several martial moves, bringing down one ninja after another. She was seemingly unstoppable. She caught a glimpse of Nightwing's eskrima stick flying through the air and hitting the face of another enemy directly behind Green Arrow. It was followed up with a wise crack of good will, "I'd say we're even now, Arrow!"

The pair seemed to be watching each other's backs; much the same way that Canary and Walker were doing now. She noticed the Batman using the shadows as his personal weapon. So far he hadn't even been noticed for the most part. As she turned she watched even more Hand warriors enter. This needed to end and it needed to end now. She waited for the Bat to move out of her direction. He seemed to be aware of exactly what was about to happen. Arrow, Nightwing, and Walker, along with most of the police, were behind her. She braced herself and screamed. A massive sonic attack rattled the walls and brought almost everyone in the room to their knees. Most fear the Canary for her sheer martial ability but they should also fear her power. Her sonic attacks are unmatched by most. The group rallied around her as the cry ceased. Green Arrow looked around, never lowering his bow, "That was rather impressive. Was that all of them?"
"I'd like to nominate Cazzik for the Sexiest Man on Earth 2010." --Balsa

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Sun Feb 01, 2015 5:08 pm

As the group surveyed the surrounding area several new adversaries flowed into the room from three different doors. Walker sighed, "Are you friggin kidding me?!" The looks on the other heroes' faces showed their agreement with the Sergeant's statement. Two batarangs flew from the upper level next to the stairwell, cutting through the air and hitting two assassins. As Batman prepared another volley an arm reached out of the shadows and gripped the detective by the neck. A powerful blow was delivered to the Dark Knight's ribs, and then another to his face. A man in black armor and a red mask appeared. He lifted Batman over his head and threw him off the stairwell. Batman hit the ground hard but rolled back to his feet. There were not many that possessed the skill to sneak up on someone like the Bat. Nightwing looked up at their new adversary, "Probably not the best idea to throw Batman off a ledge. Just saying."

The man in the red mask held up his hand and the other ninjas backed away, though they kept their weapons up. The Arrow let fly three separate projectiles and all watched as the man deflected the first two and caught the last one, "A valiant attempt, brother. But you never were a match for me. Though I am impressed with your choice in allies. Respect should be given to you all. You fought bravely. But it is over."

Arrow's eyes narrowed. He knew that voice. He knew this enemy. "Ruin. Why are you here?"

Ruin turned his attention solely to the archer, "For you. You betrayed us. The Beast commands you to return and face judgement. I am here to deliver you."

The group prepared for battle and Ruin simply shook his head, "Lay down your arms and surrender. All of you. We have planted bombs all across this city. If you do not come with us now we will detonate them," He took a step forward, "You have lost."
"I'd like to nominate Cazzik for the Sexiest Man on Earth 2010." --Balsa

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Nichalus » Wed Feb 04, 2015 2:36 pm

Deathstroke watched closely to the events happening below through the steepled glass rooftop of the museum with educational observation of the individuals involved. The Hand of course had several members up on the roof, but at present they laid sprawled on the rooftop in various degrees of death.

This was his first time seeing the new Nightwing, and so far he was fairly impressed with the man's abilities, but noticed many weaknesses that could be exploited. While the female appeared to be the Black Canary, she had yet to loose her sonic capabilities. His analytic mind captured every move of the heroes, their use of, and type, equipment used in specific situations, all of which would be used if said individuals ever got in his way, or...contracted.

Then there was the Hand, rouge elements of offshoot rejects. A poor man's version of the League of Shadows Deathstroke thought as he sneered at them. Ruin appeared to be about the only target that had some gusto, and beneath his mask Evan couldn't help but smirk slightly as Batman was thrown down by the man. As much as he would like to see how this turned out, he didn't have the time, nor the inclination to allow this to go to his normal end. He had a point to make...again.

Removing his SOCOM Mk-13 rifle from his back, he careful leveled the suppressed barrel through the small hole he had already cut into place during the ruckus below. Peering through the Nightforce NXS scope, he took a quick bead Batman's mask and triggered the laser-sight with a quick micro-second burst at the corner of his eye.

The lenses that covered Batman's eyes were new prototypes that he had been wanting to test, and his visit to Bludhaven appeared to be a good as any testing ground as any. As it was his lens covered eye caught the quick burst, and cast his gaze towards the direction of the light, the direction of his eyes masked by the lenses so no one could see where he was looking. Which was probably for the best as he recognized the figure in the rooftop glass covered atrium, and the powerful rifle pointing at him. Using his fingertip touchpad in the fingertips of his gloves, the lenses slipped quickly through the various spectrum until he caught the ultraviolet bursts of morse code, and the message it held.

Faced now with the conundrum of trusting Deathstroke, or trying to figure his own way out of the situation, he had to trust the Master Assassin and hoped that his questionable sense of Honor was still firmly in place. Besides, if Deathstroke wanted him dead, it would have already been over.

"You have lost." Ruin stated as he came down the stairwell and stood before the heroes.

"I think your putting the ox before the cart." Batman growled before Arrow could say anything and stepped towards Ruin.

"One more step Batman, and many innocent lives will die because of you." Ruin warned.

"Batman, what the hell..." Arrow hissed.

"I told you guys throwing him off the stairwell was a mistake." Nightwing chimed in.

"Not my town, so I don't really care." Batman stated coldly and stepped forward again.

"Batman...what the fu...!!" Arrow yelled as the ground trembled from a far off explosion moments after Ruin sent off the charges.

**Ten minutes earlier***

Robert Griffin sat at his ornately carved wooden desk, his feet propped up on the top, smoking a large and most likely expensive cigar. A pleased smile creased his lips as he thought about how perfectly he had setup the situation that was currently happening at the Bludhaven Museum.

By now Ruin and his Hand minions would have Arrow in their sights, and all his problems would soon be over. But then the the phone rang, and all his problems faded away like smoke in a wind.

"Yeah, what is it?" Griffin said.

"You really shouldn't have crossed me Griffin."

"..who..Deathstroke?" Griffin stammered as the ominous voice continued.

"You take a contract with me, I am the sole contractor...that's well known Griffin. The contract with Queen is public...something that you failed to mention. So, our contract is null and void. I've taken the liberty of returning your deposit." The phone suddenly when dead, but the chill down Griffin's spine did not.

It was then that Griffin could see the lights of a vehicle coming down the private road to the front of his house, the recognizable brown company truck of UPS as it came to a stop by the front door.

"Oh sweet JESUS!!! NO!!!!" Griffin screamed.

The explosion took out the entire house and most of the acreage that it rested upon, leaving an enormous smoking crater and the scattered remains of Griffin and anyone unfortunate enough to be within the house and area.

**Back at the Museum**

Ruin could immediately tell that the explosions were not happening according to plan, the sound and direction was all wrong.

"I hope you weren't close to Mr. Griffin, Ruin." Deathstroke stated as he walked in behind the row of Hand that were at the entrance to the section of the museum that they were in. The Hand ninja's warriors whirled around, bringing their weapons to bare upon the new intruder.

"Hold!" Ruin commanded them. "Deathstroke, this is not your concern."

"Oh, but I beg to differ. Your boy Griffin violated my rules about contracting with me. So, the contract was nullified, along with Griffin and subsequently your plans to blow up the city. Consider it collateral damage associated with my original target. By the way, your boys were far too easy to track and observe with their little mission to plant the explosives."

"So, you are joining Arrow and his allies now?" Ruin asked.

Deathstroke chuckled beneath his mask. "I have no contract for any of the people in this room...as much as I would like to have one with one of them. That said, there isn't anything here for me to profit from. So I'll be taking my leave. I just wanted you to know that it wasn't anything...personal."

Deathstroke turned and began to walked back the way he came, but stopped and looked back over his shoulder and with two fingers, he pointed at Arrow and Batman both. "You two do owe me one though, and I will collect one day."
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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Mon Feb 16, 2015 5:51 pm

Ruin's red mask scanned the room. His plan was a simple one, that had even accounted for the Arrow having allies. What it had not accounted for was a traitorous Deathstroke. The balance may have shifted. Ruin was a masterful tactician and thought logically when it came to all things, especially combat. Without his contingency plans in place this battle may not be winnable in it's current state. Though he knew he was more than a match for any one of them in single combat he did recognize the impressive collection of sheer martial prowess they represented as a group. He had the numbers on his side but so far his foot soldiers had proven ineffective against the heroes, "We seem to be at an impasse. The assassin may have assisted you this time, but I assure you he will not do so again."

As Arrow raised his bow Ruin followed with his hand, "Enough, brother. The fact of the matter is you can do nothing to me. Remember I know who you are. I know who you spend your time with. It would be a shame if something happened to one of your friends. As for the rest of you, I have no quarrel with you. This is Hand business and my masters have ordered the return of our wayward brother. I will give you twenty four hours to deliver him. If you fail to do so I will bring all out war to this city."

Several ninjas jumped forward and were easily dispatched by the group. When they had put the distraction down they realized Ruin had gone. Conner collapsed his bow and hung it on his belt. He knew Ruin's threat of war was legitimate. He would either need to turn himself over or he would need assistance in dealing with his enemy.
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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Mon Feb 16, 2015 7:40 pm

The night air was cold and piercing. Ruin stood alone on the rooftop of the skyscraper. Light from neighboring buildings shown onto the city below. Bludhaven was a rats nest of villainy and scum. Unlike Gotham, who was ruled by a true organized criminal empire, Bludhaven was chaos. The organized elements were not organized enough to deal with the street gangs like the Saints nor were the police at all effective against the growing number of super powered psychopaths running amok. The African-American man frowned beneath his mask. He truly hated this city. He missed Japan.

There was a slight noise behind him. Ruin did not turn, "You received my signal."

Deathstroke stepped out of the shadows, "I did. What do you want?"

Ruin turned to gaze upon the assassin, "I offer my apologies, Deathstroke. It was not my intention to deceive you. Nevertheless, your interference tonight has forced me to move up my plans. This.......mission was not my own. It was an order from my masters. The Arrow betrayed the Hand as a whole. I was hoping to use him. To aim him at my own enemies and wield him as a weapon. I may still be able to do so. However, now I will need more firepower. That being said, I have a proposition for you."
"I'd like to nominate Cazzik for the Sexiest Man on Earth 2010." --Balsa

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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Nichalus » Wed Feb 18, 2015 8:09 am

The proposition was expected in Deathstroke's mind. He had no doubt that Ruin wanted his aid in helping him with his issue with The Arrow, and judging by Ruin's own words, he knew that Queen was The Arrow. It didn't take his evolved brain to figure that out. There were many people that have come under his scrutiny that he could reveal to the world their alter egos, but it wouldn't profit him to do so.

"One thing to remember Ruin, my 'interference' is the price that you paid due to your subordinate Griffin breaking my rules, and thus ruining your Master's plan for whatever issues you have with Queen."

"So you know?" Ruin asked.

Deathstroke tilted his head to the side in a placating gesture. "Really? You really just asked me that?"

"I have a specific code Ruin." Deathstroke continued. "If I am given a mark, then I am the sole contractor for that mark. I don't fight people's wars, nor do I care about reasons why. As long as it isn't children, or normal average women, I don't give a shit."

"With that said, I'll listen to your proposition, but you and your wannbe band of Ninjas are already off to a bad start with me. So, let's hear it."
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Re: Arrow: The Hunted

Post by Cazzik » Sat Feb 21, 2015 6:02 pm

Ruin listened to the Assassin's bravado. Deathstroke was extremely skilled, but with that skill came ego. That was fine as far as he was concerned. Deathstroke was money well spent, "Your rules are understood. I will abide by them."

He turned away from the assassin and walked toward the edge of the rooftop, looking off into the distance, "I do not require your assistance with the Arrow. Nor with any other target of the Hand. In fact this contract is my own. It has nothing to do with the Masters. I trust your code will keep your silence."

The assassin nodded silently. Ruin continued, "I'm not hiring you to kill a single target. I'm hiring you to accompany me, and a few of my allies, to Japan. We will enter the Hand stronghold and you and the others will hold off my brethren while I enter the Sacred Room. That is all I require. You may kill as many of my brethren as you see fit in order to accomplish this task. Whatever your asking price is does not matter. I require the best for this endeavor, Deathstroke. You clearly believe yourself to be just that."

Ruin turned back to his companion, "Will you accept the contract?"
"I'd like to nominate Cazzik for the Sexiest Man on Earth 2010." --Balsa

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