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it is a truth universally acknowledged that a supervillain in possession of good taste must be in want of a nemesis (or, meguca Ruby cross drops on Worm)
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Ruby had been totally minding her own business - read, challenging a magical girl to a fight for the fun of it - when her opponent (cute, though taking a little friendly brawl way too seriously) screams and spins her frilly pink staff, sparkles and bubbly stars trailing it in a whirlwind. Ruby tries to counter with her own whirlwind of fire and shadow - this is the first time her opponent (Pretty Bubble Sorceress Anastasia, she thinks - or maybe Alexandria? Surely not Amelia) has pulled out stars, previously it's been deadly normal bubble swirls, but it can't be too much of an escalation -

- Which is when the bubbly stars overwhelm her fire, surrounding her in a tornado of shoujo peppiness. Ruby leaps straight up, trying to burst out -

- And lands somewhere that's totally not where she started, with no sign of her opponent anywhere around her. 

...Where the hell is she?

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Nice marble flooring, tasteful wood paneling and generically pleasant landscapes on the walls, line of counters with velvet ropes sectioning off the lines- Seems to be a bank, yeah.


Though from the way all the customers and most of the staff are huddled with their heads down against a wall being watched over by a man in a black cowboy hat with matching boots and a scarf tied around his face like a mask and a shiny revolver-looking gun in each hand, it seems to be a bank in the process of being robbed.

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OOPS THERE GOES THE MASQUERADE.

On the other hand, this kind of thing has to happen all the time, right? (Ack, her 'Somebody Else's Problem' field has totally not survived the sudden teleport. When the masquerade police or whoever show up, Ruby is so blaming this on Pretty Bubble Sorceress Acacia.) And maybe she can bluff her way out of this? Turn her field back on, everyone assumes they hallucinated the sudden tiger surrounded by dissipating bubbles? 

...Though, also, robbing a bank is so embarrassingly cliché...

 

"Oops," says the tiger, before her brain can catch up with her mouth.

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Cowboy Man spins around and spots her!

"What the..." Then he remembers what his instructions were in case of heroes appearing unexpectedly. The bubble tiger doesn't sound familiar but he's not taking any chances. "Boss! We gotta problem!" he shouts, before bringing up his guns and firing at the Sudden Tiger. Rather than bullets, the revolvers spit little blue packets of angrily humming sparks.

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Oh huh she didn't think there were any masc magical girls, like it's real tough apparently to roll even pink yoga pants. Weird. 

Also: breaking the masquerade is so definitely not her fault! She was attacked first officer, she swears. (She thinks, as she starts mentally putting together her defense.)

Anyways - she lazily raises a paw, like a cat batting away a fly, and swats aside the angry humming sparks. (They flare like embers.)

Then - biiig showy stretch, and baring her teeth in a parody of a grin. "Is it my turn now?" she rumbles - almost purrs - voice low and dramatically threatening. (If she's going to participate in breaking the masquerade, she's going to do it in style.)

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"Boss!" he yelps. "It's a fucking tiger!"

From the back where vault is a woman in a dark suit and a snake mask emerges. She is steering one of the bank employees by the scruff of the neck, presumably having coerced her into opening the vault, by the sack of cash she holds in her other hand. "Kid," she growls, "I swear to god, I left for three- what the hell, why is there a tiger?"

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The hostage is not very happy about any of these events. Unlike Outlaw Kid, Ellie knows for certain that there are no transforming tigers or even tiger-themed heroes in the city. Nor villains. Could be a new hero, but the smart bet is this is another villain. Which is great. Just what her day needed, really.

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Oh that hostage girl is cute. Rescuing pretty girls usually isn't her style (she prefers being the reason they need rescuing, all else being equal), but she can make an exception or two without losing her groove.

She finishes her stretch idly. "No need to be rude," she drawls. "To start, I'm a 'she,' not an 'it.' And to finish..."

The fucking tiger turns into a tiger-shaped mass of shadow and embers, that blows towards and envelops both robbers before they can react - she's moving idly in her view, which means that a cape would need to be a speedster to keep up with her - burning ash coats them and their weapons; cloying, thick - she's now pretty sure that both robbers are in their human form, possibly partially shifted for those guns - possibly with meguca support though she hasn't heard of anyone using human minions lately - any ordinary weapons crumble into ash, but she's not actually expecting that to work on the guns - 

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- And perfectly normal human hands pull the hostage girl back, breaking the 'boss's wrist in the process - she's wrapped in a protective swirl of flame - 

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- And the tiger pounces on the guy with guns from behind. 

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Guy with guns doesn't have a whole lot going for him after his guns flaked into ash! Which is not really to say he was well-prepared to be mauled by a tiger before that happened, but who among us is? Not this soft squishy bag of wet meat.

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She only mauls him a little. He'll be fine with medical attention, even if it isn't very prompt. Probably. Maybe. Anyways she's pretty sure he only has a broken bone or two and a couple bruises. 

She spins to bat at the boss lady next - aiming to knock her down and away from the cute hostage girl (and the random other hostages Ruby doesn't care as much about who're over by the wall). 

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How does Ruby feel about a faceful of acid? Because that's what boss lady is spitting at her.

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Lol. Lmao, even. 

The acid catches on (magical) fire and burns away harmlessly before it can touch her (or anything else), and now rude acid boss lady has an amused tiger standing on her chest! 

"Spitting acid?" the tiger drawls. "How boring." Slooow paw flex. 

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"What are-" she grunts, "Boring? Get off!"

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Get off? Well, not with this goon, she's not. 

"Boooring!" she declares, then goes ahead and coats the boring boss lady's mouth with sticky ash. No spitting or mouthing off for her! (Ruby is nice and makes sure she can still breathe.)

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Ack gack pffbbth!

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what the fuck

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Eh, boss lady isn't worth more of her time. Ruby considers for a moment - boss lady seems to be responding to magic like a normal human, which is weird - then shrugs and uses an illusion to knock her unconscious. 

She hops off boss lady after that, sends cowboy idiot a glance to make sure he isn't getting any bright ideas, then concentrates on her heat-sense for a moment to figure out if there's anyone lurking who might be another enemy. (She licks any ash - and/ or blood - off her paws while she does this.)

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Looks like she's accounted for everyone in the building.

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Nice! 

She'll saunter over to cute hostage girl, then. "Seems that's the last of them," she rumbles. 

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"Uh. Yeah. Now what?"

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"Well..." She curls closer. "Depends on if you'd like to get a coffee with me." Purring rumble. 

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"...Didn't know tigers drank coffee."

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Heh. "This one does."

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What the hell.

"You know what, sure."

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