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Alias: Xeper
Age: 28
Codename: Songbird
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MELISSA GOLD

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Dec 28 2017, 06:09 PM
Team meeting tonight, 7:30. War room.


Bring snacks or something? I don't know.


True to form, Melissa had set a cheese spread on the big table in the Cube's war room. Lead by example, and all that.

The bluenette was not an especially passive person. She tended to take charge, and past experiences had burned her a couple times on the whole 'standing around and waiting for things to happen' routine - so she made things happen instead. Lately, 'things', such as they were, had been uncooperative. Happening without permission. It was time to take stock of the situation, figure out where they stood, and get a plan together.

Also, at least in her case, to get high as a kite. As her teammates arrived, Melissa had her bong (a borosilicate Tsunami Glass Jellyfish with two sprinkler percolators. it looked like something out of a sci-fi movie) out and was lighting the bowl full of Kali Mist. The second the door closed, she leaned back in her leather chair and blew out a massive lungful of smoke, filling the space above the conference table with a sativa-infused haze.

"Ohhhhh man," she breathed, leaning her head back on the chair and staring at the ceiling for a moment. Melissa's pupils steadily widened as her entire body relaxed. Okay. Now she was ready to do leader type things. "Oh yeah. That is exactly what I needed. Okay, so, uh--"

One hand gestured - flailed really - at Karla and Paul, waving them towards the chairs. Melissa glanced around for a copy of the email she was supposed to talk about, realized she'd completely forgotten to print it out, and then decided it didn't matter.

"--first order of business, we gotta talk about this whole situation at some point, but we'll table that for later, I guess. Second order of business, my handler got back to me on that dude who got murked by the robot at the Expo - he says good job on that, by the way. Guy was a Purifier, believe it or not, the second time we've run into those anti-mutant dickholes." With a quick shift in her chair, she sucked up the last remnant of smoke in the bong's stem. "Just about everything we've heard about the Expo has been related to mutants--" (This was accompanied by a second cloud, which pulsed rhythmically as Melissa emphasized words.) "--and, I mean, despite that, we don't really know anything about them. Where they come from, if they're organized, why people are targeting them, and so on. It's at like the center of metahuman shit right now, and we're totally in the dark on it."

Although she wasn't aware of it (for obvious reasons), her recent encounter with Mystique, had also been a mutant-related incident. Melissa leaned forward in the chair and peered over her folded hands, trying to look as sagely and thoughtful as possible (no small task, considering there was a bong on her lap and her eyes were overly-narrowed as if someone was shining a flashlight in her face).

"Once is a coincidence - twice, though? Three times?" A shake of her head sent her blue locks bouncing. "Arright. What's the deal with mutants?"


@PAUL EBERSOL @KARLA SOFEN
Dec 13 2017, 06:38 PM
Hey, stay away from ninth ave, we're out in force there. Some unregged mutant dropped a garbage truck on an after-school club because they were 'spying on him for the globalists so they could force him to take the mark of the beast'.


There's a bunch of dead kids and Karla's laughing at me.


I want to go home and there's no home to go to.


Happy fucking Hanukkah, I guess.


@JESSICA JONES
Nov 19 2017, 07:20 PM

The Roxxon Decontamination Platform, established by Congressional mandate in 2015 after a particularly nasty oil spill in the Bay, was remarkably unimposing at a distance. It was only when one got up close that its size became truly evident: a sprawling network of chemical scrubbers and industrial equipment, dedicated to refining crude and pollution out of the seawater. Practically a high-tech jungle out on the open ocean, considering it was a few miles from shore - more than enough that a ferry trip would be necessary to most people.

Melissa wasn't 'most people', and arrived by gliding down from an SATF dropship, wings shimmering in a pink corona behind her. The transport pulled back as she sailed down towards one of the platforms, and kept the engine running so it could circle.

This was...sort of an unclear situation. Emergency services had gotten a call a few minutes ago saying that metahumans were attacking the RDP, that there were civilians in the facility who were in danger, and then...nothing. Signals out here weren't terribly good, due to the positioning of the platform and its distance from any of NYC's towers. There were no details beyond 'possible innocents on site' and 'expect unconventional resistance'.

Well, that was fine. The go-to tactic- the Songbird Special, her teammates had derisively called it - was kicking in the door and playing it by ear from there on out.

Taking a quick glance around, Melissa checked the top of the platform for any signs of life, and found none. She hurried towards one of the main entrances and discovered it had originally housed an elevator, the call button for which was not working. Somebody had locked it down on a lower floor. "Interesting," she murmured aloud, then spoke up into the comm. "Looks like it's not a false alarm, there's--"

The harsh buzz of static in her earpiece cut her off midway. Right. No signal. Goddammit.

At least it was a simple matter to find a staircase from there. Sliding on her gloves, the bluenette hustled down a couple flights, until she found sub-floor 1, the administrative area. Reception was empty, although the heavy security doors appeared to have been forced aside by something with gouging, chitinous limbs. Never a good sign. Melissa frowned and moved over to the reception desk, checking the visitor logs. One high school field trip, scheduled to tour the facility, starting....thirty minutes ago. Fuck. So there were civilians on-site - not just the workers and security, but a bunch of kids, too.

Her finger depressed a button on the desk, and the P.A. system activated all over the facility with a squeal of feedback.

"Attention, whoever the hell's trying to take over the RDP. This is Songbird, from the Sokovia Accords Task Force. You get one chance to do this the easy way. Unlock the elevator, leave behind any civilians in the facility, and come to the administration floor, unarmed, with your hands up; you'll be treated fairly and nobody gets hurt."

Because it was depressingly rare for anybody to accept this offer, she was already kneading a sphere of sonic energy between her palms, letting it grow wider and wider from her voice. It thrummed with potential energy, volatile and pulsing.

"You have thirty seconds to comply. Run that timer out and I will personally come down there and fuck your day up."


@KAMALA KHAN
Oct 23 2017, 10:11 PM

Government is kind of like Hollywood in that people have a tendency to fail upwards into positions for which they absolutely do not qualify. Oversee an endeavor that absolutely tanks, completely misjudge the efficiency policy you're implementing, blow the whole budget a week in - congrats, you've got a future in management. Often, this is the result of nepotism or backstabbing or giving the illusion of productivity.

Occasionally, though, it is the result of being in the right place at the right time when everybody qualified has the flu, and that is why Melissa Gold was standing outside the Accords operational headquarters in Manhattan, holding a hastily-made sign that said "KING T'CHALLA."

(She had spent two frantic minutes on Wikipedia making sure she spelled it right.)

A brief bout of epidemics had swept through some of the higher-ups, and whoever was de facto in charge of the diplomatic outreach once the sick-leave dust had cleared was not interested in showing their guest around. So, in a breathtaking lack of situational awareness, he had decided it'd be more hands-on to have somebody from the SATF handle it. Melissa had volunteered, not wanting Paul to be bothered by social stuff and not wanting Karla to have the opportunity to interact with a head of state.

Allowing this had been a questionable decision, to put it generously. With her blue hair, lip ring, and half-sleeves, the task force's Songbird was far from the spitting image of a clean-cut professional - worse, they'd called her in while she was off-duty and so she was meandering on the front stairs in motorcycle boots, a leather skirt, and a Supreme knockoff tee that read "SUCC" in massive Impact font. Her handler had nearly had a coronary when she'd come in, but what was done was done - all that the suits could do was argue over who'd take the blame when this inevitably went south.

Melissa, naturally, was undeterred. It was a pretty good day, all things considered, and now she was apparently getting paid to hang out with royalty. Sure, there were some responsibilities (something about a tour of HQ, a couple introductions here and there), but frankly, the gig sounded badass.

Speaking of which, here came a group that, if she was not thoroughly mistaken, was going to be the King and his entourage. Either that, or they were getting costumed protesters again. Hopefully the former.

"Heyyyy," she exclaimed, waving the sign. "Are you guys the Wakandan delegation? Is, uh, his highness in there somewhere? I'm Songbird. SATF. Director Kennedy couldn't be here today so I'm taking over for him on the whole tour thing."

It occurred to her that if these were protesters, she was probably about to cause a security breach. Ehhh, the odds were in her favor.


@T'CHALLA UDAKU
Oct 22 2017, 12:56 PM

"It's the first of its kind - a deployable locomotive replicator system with fully autonomous rapid-fabrication possibilities," announced Dr. Tiedemann, waving a tablet with a projection of a spider-like robot on it. "The Anvil utilizes pre-programmed schematics to--"

"Okay, let's not go down that road, because A, I have no idea what any of that means, and B, I'm not sure I care enough to find out." Melissa was under a considerable amount of stress - she didn't like huge crowds of unknowns, the responsibility of coordinating the SATF with Stark Industries security was well beyond anything she'd ever had to shoulder, and more new and bizarre factors just kept piling themselves onto her day. "Just point to the person looking sideways at your superweapon or whatever, and we'll beat them up and throw them in the Raft."

This was not the best day by any stretch of the imagination. The Accords Council had quite understandably designated the Stark Expo as a potential nexus for anti-reg terrorist activity, and that meant the task force had to be deployed for security purposes, in case rogue metahumans happened to show up and piss in the punchbowl. That, in turn, meant that Melissa had spent the morning spinning more plates than she cared to think about, trying to keep things under control while also pacifying the Stark personnel and making sure that neither of her teammates got bored and Ruined Everything™. To say the least, it was taking its toll on her, psychologically.

A sour apple Blow Pop rotated inside her mouth, around six times in as many seconds, as the annoyed scientist lectured her. "It's not a weapon," he insisted. "It's designed to create, not to destroy! Like a heavy-duty 3D printer, kind of. It harvests resources from the area around it and uses those resources to create raw materials, worker drones, that kind of thing." With a wave of his hand, Tiedemann indicated the curtained-off stage that they were approaching. "You'll see when we get to the demonstration in an hour. We'll have it put together some--sorry, that's not the point. The point is, we've been hearing on social media that there might be some kind of effort to sabotage the demo, so we wanted to bring the task force in on the loop."

"Got it," Melissa replied around a mouthful of lollipop as they ascended the stairs. "Lemme just take a quick look at it, and then we'll do a sweep and make sure there's nobody we recognize or anything."

"Of course. Right this way. Please forgive the clutter, we're still preparing the, ahhh..."

Tiedemann opened the door to reveal a vast sweeping soundstage, draped on all sides by red curtains, and....absolutely nothing else.

The Anvil was gone.

Melissa swirled the lollipop around in her mouth for ten very long seconds, eyes locked dead ahead of her - and then at last, she pulled it out with an audible pop and put a finger to her earpiece.

"Hey, uh, guys? Have either of you seen a giant robot crab walking around the expo? This....uh, it's nothing urgent, there may be a very slight chance of, like...rampages or....look, the point is, have you seen it?"


@KARLA SOFEN @PAUL EBERSOL
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