The Return
Roleplaying Log: The Return
Participants
IC Details
Synopsis:

Dani and Domino go searching out a lead only to wind up in something far far worse. The shadows.

Other Characters Referenced: Owen Mercer, Rocket, Groot, Bucky Barnes, Jane Foster, Jessica Jones
IC Date: August 03, 2019
IC Location:
OOC Notes & Details
Posted On: 05 Aug 2019 02:07
Rating & Warnings: R - language and dead bodies
NPC & GM Credits:
Associated Plots

The Here and Now:

Dilapidated Warehouse Number Six:

You know there are times when Domino and Dani do seem to attract various types of luck. Good luck. Bad luck and then there's horrendous luck.

That's where the two women are right now. Horrendously bad luck, even with Domino's own powers negating some of it!

Bullets liberally fill and fly through the air, coming from all sides of the warehouse and from both Dani, Domino and the criminals inside. The mission was supposed to be simple enough - go and check out a lead for the case that Domino, Sloane and Dani are working on. That lead was supposedly here at Warehouse Number Six, but instead of said lead, the two women came upon a gang cutting their great heaping piles of cocaine.

And now, those gang members are clearly protecting the drugs they intend to distribute upon the streets. Protecting it with all the fire power they have upon hand. Which is a lot.

"Domino, you always take me to the *nicest* of places."

Yes, that's Moonstar's current shout as she ducks behind a stack of wooden pallets. "This is such a lovely *evening*."

The warehouse is a one-story thing, rectangular in size, and definitely dark and dank. Pallets, boxes and tables can be found strewn across the floor, as well as a dozen or so gang members.

"If you can send some cover fire my way it'd be most appreciated. " Calls out Moonstar as she edges around her pallet and eyes the area across the warehouse. "If I can get over there I'll have a clear line of sight." Which would allow her to use her powers so much easier.

Elsewhere:

Hydra Base Number 12:

Somewhere in the wilds of another state a small laboratory is packed with Hydra Agents. Their voices rise in a rhythmic chant and with each syllable said specks of light gather in the circle their bodies create. Those dots of light coalesce into something much larger; a portal. Within the realm that portal opens into a demon can be found. Its appearance reminiscent of a grizzly bear, though now skeletal with moth eaten patches of fur to be seen, and the occasional flash of bleached white bones through its stringy hide. Upon the opening of the portal the once great bear lifts its mangy head up, the lowest of growls starting in its throat.

———

It was all a setup. Domino could have seen it coming a mile away. 'Little Jacob' as she likes to call the arms dealer really has it in for her (and -really- hates being called 'Little Jacob') but she still needs to pick his brain for some information. It's not like she can line up a meeting with the guy anymore but it would seem that he's more in touch with the comings and goings than anticipated.

And so they wound up here in the middle of Coke Central.

At least Neena brought some heavier firepower! She had been anticipating a fight. Just..maybe not as big of a fight as this one.

"What can I say, I've always valued our time together!" the albino calls back before taking out some drug thug's left kneecap with a stolen .357 revolver. "You've gotta" *click!* "enjoy the" The empty revolver gets hurled out into the room. "simpler things!"

Just as she ducks behind cover another guy turns in her direction at the precise moment to take a Smith and Wesson to the bridge of his nose, landing with a *pop!* of busted bone and a shrill cry of "AAH you bitch!"

To the call of cover Neena actually grins, switching to two of her own 'sidearms.' "Yeah, I can do that!" is promised while they're both flicked over to full auto. "I can only do this trick once so make sure your boots are laced!"

Those sixty rounds sure do go fast… Red fluid and white powder spray all over the place as dealers and product fall victim to so much indirect fire.

Domino -definitely- came prepared for a fight today. She's in her happy place.

———

"Simpler things?" Shouts back Moonstar, "How about next time we strive for quieter things?"

That sounds good, doesn't it? It sure does to Moonstar! She gets shot at enough during her shifts with SHIELD thankyouverymuch. For her downtime she really prefers bullet-free activities. She really does!

Still, that doesn't stop her from doing what she needs to do.

As soon as Domino breaks out the guns and starts that cover fire Moonstar straightens and runs. As she runs across the length of the warehouse her ICER comes up and with a skilled hand, she begins to pick off as many thugs as she can as she streaks to the other side.

"I should yell at her for using real bullets." Mutters the Cheyenne, but she can't quite bring herself to yell. The situation is just that crappy, but hopefully not for much longer. Once upon the other side Dani focuses her brown eyes upon all those thugs that she can see. One by one by one the thugs fall. It's as if they're puppets and their puppeteer has cruelly cut all their strings.

It continues that way until there's only three or four thugs to finish off. Once those four are taken care of Domino and Moonstar will find themselves safe -

Only elsewhere, within Hydra's outpost, a man's voice rises above all the rest. He sings a powerful soliloquy. His song which makes his thoughts into reality. From his mind, to his voice, to finally his hands. In his hands comes the raw energies of the Eldritch. He molds those energies into shining bright chains. Those chains whip through the portal seeking the pitiful and mangy Demon Bear. The poor beast roars its rage, its anger, but also despair. It knows it cannot stop the will behind those chains. It is too weak.

The first chain enwraps one of the Demon Bear's paws and it hurts.

It burns.

Dani drops her ICER from nerveless fingers.

The second chain enwraps another of the Demon Bear's paws and the pain intensifies. It roars and shakes.

Dani's psychic assaults on the last of the thugs falter and then fails.

Each Hydra Agents take a hold of the chains and with a might of a dozen men and women they heave.

They pull and they bring the Demon Bear once more to earth. Enchained.

Now Dani turns in the general direction of Domino and tries to shout a warning, but too late. All she can whisper is, "Neena -", then her eyes roll to the back of her head before the Cheyenne woman falls gracelessly to the ground.

———

"Fine, next time I'll bring the suppressors!"

Of course, if Dani -did- mention the thought about using real bullets loud enough for Domino to hear she'd have a quick retaliation about how it was, in fact, Dani's task to make sure Dom -had- nonlethal alternatives like that fancy ICER the Cheyenne is currently rocking. Neena doesn't have access to all of that bleeding edge spy tech!

Which means there's going to be a lot of Cokeheads with ruined knees tonight.

Or taking psychic arrows.

"Hey, dumbass!"

Another thug turns toward the pale woman with a freshly loaded AK only to take one of those arrows and ragdoll right where he stood.

"Heh, I love that," Dom mutters with a toothy grin.

There's a powerful acidic stench in the air. Coke, blood, and gunsmoke mix into a thick and powerful fog which has the pale woman breathing in deep then giving her head a good shake from behind cover. "DAMN this takes me back. Madripoor's a helluva place."

She's just starting the process of reloading when the sound of something else falling catches her ears, prompting an immediate look to the Cheyenne. "Uh..Moonie?"

She's faltering.

Compromised somehow?

"Shhhhhit" comes hissed through Neena's teeth as she dumps her unloaded sidearms and leaps out of cover, sprinting right at the four yet remaining.

"There she is, GET HER!"

The first gun jams before a shot can be taken. Then it's too late. The rifle slams into its owner's face, the magazine is ejected then neatly kicked into the hand of another who then shoots the third in the face. The fourth gets a rifle thrown end over end into the sternum before number one's sidearm is pulled from its apendix holster and *Blam-Blam-Blam!* they all fall down.

So, too, does Danielle Moonstar.

"Aw fuck no. Nonono—DANI," Neena sprints over and hits the ground fast enough to slide the remaining three feet to the Cheyenne's side.

No blood.

No bullet wounds.

Not Dom's fault.

"Ah jeezus you had me worried, girl." … Um. Neena lightly slaps either side of Dani's face. "Moonie? Hey, you in there? I know a little angeldust can really fuck with your head when you're not used to it but c'mon now, don't make me carry your sorry ass out of here."

"..Dani?"

"-DANI.-"

———

Domino takes each thug down one by one by one.

It's quiet now and all that can be found is the scent of fear, of injury, blood, cocaine and something else.

It strengthens as soon as Domino slides right on over to Moonstar's inert form.

It's a familiar smell to those that know the season; the scent of winter, of coldness, of ice and snow. A sharp scent that clears the more unsavory smells that can be found from the battle so recently waged.

Whether jostled, jiggled, or slapped, Moonstar doesn't seem to react to Domino's ministrations. She just lays there still and silent, with that smell of the wild winter around her. If it weren't for the rise and fall of her chest one might really thing she's dead.

Thankfully she's not.

But she doesn't respond to anything, at least, not until her name is spoken. All names have power, whether full names, partial names, nicknames, or other. That last call of -DANI- pulls forth a reaction from the seemingly unconscious woman. Her eyes open wide and with a jerk Moonstar reaches up and grabs Domino's arms. "Nahkohe."

"Nahkohemahta'sooma."

Dani's lapsed into Cheyenne and for a second she can't find the right words in English, until finally, "The Bear. Neena you need to -"

Get out. She really needs to get out, but it's too late.

It's too late for Danielle Moonstar. It's too late for the Demon Bear as he arrives fully upon the earthen plane, bound and captured by Hydra, and now it's too late for Domino.

There are shadows all around the warehouse and all of them sharpen, they darken and grow deep like a starless winter sky. There might be a sense of watchfulness from those shadows, an awareness now, especially as Moonstar's own shadow suddenly moves.

The edges flare outward and sharpen like fingers, or knives, and with a life the dark filaments twist around Moonstar's arms and travel upward to her hands. They twine around Domino's arms and when secure the darkness pulls both women through.

Then they fall into darkness. Down, down, down. Into the cold blackness below.

Awareness fades for seconds, minutes, maybe hours, until finally all of Domino's senses flare to life.

Sight, smell, touch, taste, all of it returns.

The mercenary finds herself in New York City upon a street covered in thick snow. The world is largely quiet, no cars, no people, nothing. Looking around it seems as if the world is only various shades of crystalized white. It's why the patch of red so many feet ahead of Domino might easily be seen, as the color almost leaps out against the backdrop of white.

It's blood and still warm enough to melt the first few layers of snow beneath it.

Another patch of blood can be seen not too far ahead.

And another.

Another.

Until a trail forms.

———

Winter? Okay, Dom's expecting to be smelling snow but not ACTUAL snow. It's freaking August, there wouldn't be any snow!

'Nahkohe.'

"Nahkunamatatawhatsit?" Blink. "Bear? What bear? I don't see any—"

…Thing…

…At all…

Neena jumps back to her feet and brings the lone pistol up in a two handed stance, pivoting about in place while looking for a threat, or ..anything at all at this point. Why did it suddenly get so dark around here?

Movement. Shadows upon shadows. Coming from Dani?! Neena can't shoot -Dani!- A quick recoil and a "Dammit get offa me!" is all she can do before everything disappears and all that's left is a sense of falling.

Blind falling.

Just like when Warren had thrown her out of the highrise.

She hadn't screamed then. She's not going to scream now. But the fear, that part is still real.

New York City. With snow? Where did the snow come from? Why is it so quiet? What—

Pale eyes stare at so much clean and silent urban emptiness until the first spot of blood is noticed, a bright cherry red. The world in cold monotones except for warm blood. It's like an unsettling metaphor to the contract killer's life. And now it's forming a trail.

"This is some real Silent Hill shit, right here…" she whispers with the words coming forth as a hazy white vapor. Both arms come in close against the cold as she continues to stare at the trail. This, just like with the meeting, is an obvious trap. She'd be stupid to follow the trail. That's exactly where -whatever this shit is- wants her to go.

But where else IS there to go?

Another select curse slips beneath the albino's breath as the decision is made. Then she's following the trail. With every step it feels like some unseen force is drawing a bead on her back, bringing a tension within her shoulders which only grows the further along she walks through the aetheric snow.

———

Silent Hill.

There's something to that, for there is definitely silence all around Domino.

When she speaks nothing answers back, but the sense of watchfulness sharpens. It drills right between her shoulder blades, a constant companion as she finally makes the decision to move. To walk into that trap.

For it is a trap.

After the sixth or seventh bloodspot the snow begins to show some disturbances. Someone walking. Then someone running. Then fighting.

Great furrows can be seen in the snow now, showing a battle between two people and also the occasional animal track. A great bear paw print, but only occasionally.

The telltale marks of fighting continue onward up until the first body is found.

A man. Dirty blonde hair, a scruffy-ish face, though handsome in its own right. What can only be described as a mauling happened to Owen Mercer. His torso ripped wide open, an arm torn off.

A painful way to die.

And he's still warm to touch, though quickly cooling.

A glance ahead finds another body -

A young woman, small, red hair cut close to the scalp.

Then another. A man this time, a more familiar figure. Emery.

And it continues -

Rocket.

Groot.

Jessica Jones.

So. Many. More.

The trail of bodies ends.

In the distance movement can be seen. One last fight. It's between three beings -

A Bear.

A small black Bird.

A large Wolf.

The Bear crushes the bird in its jaws and tosses it carelessly the ground. The wolf staggers, as if mortally wounded. Then the Bear pounces.

It's not long until the wolf lays dying upon the snow.

As the Bird and Wolf die their forms resolve to a man and a woman.

Bucky Barnes and Jane Foster.

The Bear likewise shifts and what stands there is now a woman, cloaked in the hide of a Bear. The snarling upper jaws of the Bear is the woman's hood and shields all but her mouth and chin, while the rest of its hide drapes around her form. The 'head' of the Bear turns in the direction of Domino as the woman looks over.

———

Neena's had nightmares like this before.

The cold. The blood. The trail of pain and death.

Besides the feeling of being watched and the escalation of tension there's an increase to the ghostly woman's fear. Every time she's walked down this path it's led to nothing good and everything bad. Waking up to a cold sweat and an empty room. Chased out of her own mind and the dark and painful secrets buried deep within.

Then come the bodies.

Some she can recognize. Some she can't. None of them will be getting back up. Every death has the hallmark signs of a brutal physical altercation, the marks not of blades or bullets but of a beast. A bear..? Was this somehow what Dani had been warning her about?

This nightmare is somehow different from the rest, proven when she encounters the final battle being waged between three animals. Including a bear.

As the other two creatures fall then morph into the forms of people Neena's programming takes hold. The chamber is checked for a live round within her sidearm then both hands wrap around the grip, the sights held at low ready. Then it's all eyes on the woman who had morphed from the bear.

What on Earth should she say in a situation like this?

In the deathly still silence Neena's words feel heavy and muffled, as if they'll never make it as far as where the other figure is standing.

"You have my friend. I want her back."

Dom may be a one trick pony where this encounter is concerned but she is a damn good trick pony at this one game…

———

Snow crystalizes in the air and begins to fall.

It rains silently down only hissing ever so slightly as it lands upon the ground. The cold deepens, worsens. The chill nips at fingers, toes, noses and extremities.

It burns.

That doesn't stop Domino, or the woman who was once a Bear.

The two stare at each other and for the woman wreathed in the skin of the Bear there's the smallest of movements. A cock of her head, and the snarling visage of the bear overlaid upon it, to the side. A possibly curious gesture.

Or maybe amused.

Or both.

"Then." Comes the flat and slightly roughened voice. "You shall have her back."

And with those words said the woman throws back the hood of her cloak and reveals who's beneath it.

Danielle Moonstar.

"Shoot, Neena Thurman, for the heart."

And the woman once known as Danielle Moonstar extends her hands outward in a gesture that signifies her unarmed state and her surrender.

"For only death will release your friend from my grip."

———

Stay focused, Thurman.

Extreme weather testing had been a part of Neena's training. The Project was none too kind about it. Being locked in a freezer for dangerous lengths of time, being taught simple exercises and mantras to keep the blood flowing to the extremities, no part of it was fun but it had at least proven to be highly educational.

She never expected to have to use it in a moment like this.

The burning causes her to squint. The chill keeps her limbs drawn close to try and retain core temperature. And the womanthe TARGETin front of her stays within a comfortable degree of focus. Well enough that a shot could be taken if necessary.

Except that the target is Dani.

And Dom's heart plummets.

"Oh Moonie…" she whispers with a gust of smoke upon her breath. Slowly Neena's head shakes. "This isn't you."

With the show of surrender Dom takes the chance and starts to creep forward, never taking her eyes off of the woman or letting her guard down. This is super high stakes territory. It could all be a distraction. For all she knows there could be a whole -army- of bears creeping up behind her. With the snow acting as an insulator she'd never hear them coming until their claws were tearing out her spine.

The passage goes safely, bringing the two figures much closer together. Plenty close enough for the warped vision of Dani to see the pain lurking in the albino's eyes. She can't make a shot like this without SOME form of verification… She had to look directly into Dani's eyes and read the other woman for herself.

(None of this is real.)

"I'm sorry, Dani."

Dark-clad arms snap up for a point blank shot, the two cracks from the pistol sounding dull and flat throughout the urban blizzard.

Two shots. Straight to the heart. Impossible for her to miss. As quick and as final as she can possibly make the kill.

———

None of this is real.

There is truth in that thought.

But also some falsehood.

The Herald of the Demon Bear watches the woman approach and a dark humor keeps her lips turned upward into something of a smile. Once close enough their eyes lock and there's nothing in those brown eyes that bespeak of Danielle Moonstar.

There is only coldness. Of death.

Then laughter as the gun snaps up and Domino fires point blank range. Twice.

The bullets hurtle through the air and pierce skin and bone and then heart and the force of it throws the woman backwards. The snow is soft as it cushions her fall and there the Herald of the Demon Bear lays, her blood beginning to stain the pristine snow around her.

And slowly, so slowly, that it might not first be seen the world around the two begins to shift.

The buildings begin to fade.

The streets.

The snow. The bodies.

The only things left are Domino and her guns, Dani upon the ground, and the shadows that twist around them.

It's Moonstar that now speaks, her voice a rattle in her chest, "Neena." She doesn't move save for her head as she turns to focus upon Domino. "Quick .. not much time .. take my hand."

She doesn't lift her hand, but she does uncurl her fingers. "Hurry."

And a look to her eyes reveals that this is truly Dani, not whatever that woman was.

———

This is wrong.

This is -all wrong.-

This is all wrong and now she just gunned down Danielle without provocation.

But it isn't real.

Is it..?

The laughter doesn't help, sending another chill through Domino's spine as the Not-Dani hits the ground and goes still. Then the world seems to fade to black a second time. That's..not good. Whenever darkness falls something else seems to take its place place and chances are that whatever takes the place of this city it isn't going to be anything better.

When Danithe REAL Danispeaks out Neena nearly jumps out of her skin.

(She's alive!)

(She's dying!)

(Oh my god I just killed Moonstar!)

Dom drops to the snow and catches Dani's hand within both of her own, pistol and all. "Tell me I just did the right thing…" she almost begs while staring down at the Cheyenne, her expression filled with worry. "I don't know what the fuck's going on, Dani!"

———
The tone of Domino's voice brings a small wince from Moonstar.

Her poor friend. After this there will have to be discussions between the two, but for now -

"Don't question yourself you did the right thing here." Moonstar rasps, "I won't die. They won't let me."

They who? The shadows? It sure seems like that's what she means. Especially as tendrils of shadows begin to wind their ways around the woman's limbs, stretching and searching for those grievous wounds upon chest.

"But you must listen, I don't have much time … I'm going to send you back to Earth and when you get there you need to warn Warren, the team, everyone. Tell them someone has released The Demon Bear. They'll know what that means. Promise me you'll tell them, Neena? Don't let this winter return to New York."

Already Moonstar's voice grows stronger and her grip tighter, as she squeezes the other woman's hands. The shadows slowly slip into the bullet holes and with each fragment of blackness the bleeding slows. The wounds mend.

"Talk to Emery too. Tell him we need him and Owen Mercer. They helped defeat this creature before, they can help again."

With a grunt of pain the Cheyenne pulls herself into a sitting position, "If I appear don't trust me at first. Not until you verify I'm not possessed by the Bear and if I am, shoot me. Shoot to kill again. It's the only way." And here Moonstar searches out Domino's eyes, "The others will hesitate, but you know how this goes. You know how the world really works." She nows Domino understands that sometimes sacrifices have to be made, "Promise me."

———

'They.' -THEY- won't let her die. So there is an enemy in this craziness. Having this focal point works for Domino. She may not know what it is yet but she DOES have a target. This is a start.

While Dani starts to explain the entirety of their situation Dom's got one of those worried-but-confused-as-hell expressions welded onto her face. A Demon Bear, like..for realsies. And the winter could become reality?

"Yeah—of course," Neena blinks hard and firmly shakes her head. "Yeah I promise, just ..tell me what to do."

Emery. Owen. How can Neena find these people? The X-Men. They should be able to help. Hell, or maybe she'll get lucky and bump into them while walking down the sidewalk. Stranger things have happened.

When Dani moves to sit upright Dom's right there to pull on the Cheyenne's hand and help get her there.

'Shoot to kill again.'

Neena looks grim..but she dips her head and nods while popping the magazine to get a round count. "But -only- because you promised me you won't die. If you're lying about that part then so help me Moonie, we WILL be revisiting this discussion later."

Neena's attention returns to Dani for a second before a heavy sigh is released. "I have -no fucking idea- what's going on here. Point me in the right direction and we can work it out later."

Because clearly this is neither the time nor the place for a meaningful conversation.

"And if you get in my way in the meantime I'll…" Gosh but it seemed like such an easy thing to say in her head. "..I'll take care of it."

———

Domino's aid in helping her sit-up earns a grateful look from Moonstar. In fact, it allows her to rise (stagger) to her feet.

Truly she isn't dead.

And once more her form is dressed in the typical uniform of black when she's out and about doing 'business'.

"I won't die." She confirms again, her gaze still on Domino, "Tell Emery to explain how he freed me last time. It should put your mind at ease." Or scare her even more. Really, it's fifty-fifty on how she might react to his explanation. "Emery is the one that helped save Ms. Frost with us. The Butler, though don't let that title of his fool you. He's much more."

Domino's admission that she has no idea what's going on pulls a small laugh from the Cheyenne. "No, you don't, but you will." She says grimly, "You will."

The darkness moves quickly now and the cloak begins to re-form around Moonstar's form. "I'm sending you back now. As close to the Mansion as I can get. "

Both of Dani's hands now grips the monochrome woman own and with Moonstar's touch comes the cold. It feels like frostbite up until Domino finds herself falling away and back into the shadows.

Again.

Blackness. Such cold darkness. Devoid of life. Devoid of happiness. Devoid of warmth. Absence of everything.

There is only the wintry bite to be felt.

———

Oh yeah, Emery was that curious butler dude from before. "I remember," Neena confirms with another slight dip of her chin. This could be somewhat awkward given that the albino had just talked to Emma herself the other day. It ..could probably have gone better. Now she needs to butt into Emma's life again with a 'hey, I need to borrow your butler, that cool?'

Should be fun.

Shit, and the darkness is coming around in full force again. With teleportation? She can't help but ask "You can do that?" Cool, it'll cut out the entire commute time. Straight to business, now that's more like it!

But holy -Crap- is it -Cold.- "And I'm getting you mittens for Christmas" Neena deadpans while staring back at the Cheyenne.

Oh god, falling. Falling again. Domino's no expert but doesn't she want to be going UP to get out of this nightmare, not further DOWN?

This isn't right.

This CAN'T be right.

It's like she's experiencing the inside of her own psyche. The bitter cold. The darkness. The empty abyss. All of the pain sealed away from the world. From herself. All that exists is the moment and this moment exists within a void.

"C'mon girl, get me out of here…" she whispers while wrapping arms tighter around herself.

———

Mittens. That brings a small smile from Moonstar and then the darkness over takes the Merc.

It stretches on forever.

Minutes pass.

Hours.

Days.

Or so it feels, but in reality it's only seconds that pass as Domino falls back to Earth. As close to the mansion as she could get, though perhaps not as close as Neena wants.

For Moonstar her visage changes again as it becomes fully enshrouded by the Demon Bear cloak once more. There's the softest of murmurs from Dani, "Goodbye.", then she turns away from where Domino once stood.

Now the woman straightens tall and proud, a sword of metal and hoarfrost now in her hands.

"Nahohemahta'sooma!" Shouts the woman as she names the Beast for what it is, " I come for you!" And then woman leaps toward the shade that separates itself from the darkness.

A frightening creatures, of tooth and claw, and glowing yellow eyes.

A roar shatters the plane the two battle upon as sword and claw clash. They both battle as if their lives depend upon it -

The Bear for its freedom and Danielle Moonstar for her soul.

———

Domino's not the biggest fan of teleportation on principle but she neeever wants to take this ride again. It's not exciting, it's not boring, it's not a headrush, it's not nauseating, it's just pure distilled -fear.- What if something goes wrong? What if she's -stuck here- in the emptiness? Fade to black, cease to exist?

It's about the worst possible outcome that she can think of. Just to think about it doesn't give the concept proper justice. To be here experiencing it…

It is The. Worst. Feeling. Beyond imagination.

Thank fuck that it doesn't last forever. Like the end of a cutscene the real world slowly fades back into existence but the chill continues to cling to Neena's form. Something STILL feels wrong, like her brief trip through ..whatever that place was had permanently distorted her perception of reality. -Is- this the real world? Some other trick? Another nightmare waiting to happen?

Domino slaps herself. Right across the face. Hard enough to twist her head to the side with a flicker of messy black hair and a sharp intake of breath.

"Real enough," she grunts before shaking some sense back into herself then running for the doors.

This'll make for an awkward story. 'Hey guys you're never gonna guess what just happened!'

Then again, it IS the X-Men…

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