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Dancing among the faeries
Lenora started sprinting after the thief, before disabling the teleportation unit with a blast. She didn't want to hurt him, not unless she had to. She had a code to live up to, and she wasn't going to end up like her parents. She also tried to tackle the thief, hoping she could manage it.
Just as Lenora flew at the thief, she spotted that had unsheathed an oversized sword that glowed red-hot - an energy disruptor blade. Good thing she went with a physical attack, since he could easily have shorted her energy attacks with that sword.

As she reached the thief, he took a swipe at her with the blade but she ducked under the blow. While he was off-guard she managed to barrage the thief with a series of spinning punches, knocking the sword out of his hand and sending him reeling across the room.

Just as she had the thief disabled, there was a wail of police sirens from the streets below.

She was almost out of time and she hadn't even seen The Gravitas. She could wait for the police, then work with them to locate The Gravitas. This would garner some good will with the police forces, but it also might compromise her access to the reward for finding the artefact.

Or she could interrogate the thief before the police arrived and try to find The Gravitas on her own, taking all the reward and credit for herself. But then she'd definitely be pissing off the MCPD.

- Work with the police.
- Interrogate the thief on your own.


Dancing among the faeries
Lenora didn’t fully trust the police to handle the thief as well as she could. It wasn’t that she was cocky or over-confident, it was just that she had no proof that the MCPD were going to handle this correctly. She grunted, before making her way over to the thief and kneeling on his stomach. She made sure to put a decent bit of weight behind it, not only to pin him to the ground, but also so she had his attention.
“Okay...I’m only going to ask this once, douchebag. Where is the Gravitas?”
Her eyes were narrowed above her mask, their yellow almost glowing amongst all the blue and silver. She reached out, her hand going to squeeze his throat. She needed this information now.
"Fine!" The thief shouted, writhing on the floor. "I was hired to steal The Gravitas - I'm Trackr. I have the Power to discover the location of anything on the planet, so finding and stealing things is-"

The police was already banging on the doors on the ground floor and a crackle of energy from Lenora made the thief blurt out the rest.

"Smyther hired me!" He screamed. "I forked The Gravitas over to him right away. But that's all I know, I swear!"

Lenora knew exactly who Smyther was. And hearing that he was involved was not good news.

As the front door came crashing down, there was nothing else for Lenora to do except run for the window, bursting outside just as the police came swarming into the bedroom.

Smyther fancied himself the Boss of an elite Powered mob. All of his Generals formed an exclusive club called The Splice Circle. Aside from possessing dangerous Powered abilities, The Splice Circle Generals all indulged in the abuse of steroids to enhance their powers and various cosmetic gene-modifications.

- Go home and research data on Smyther.
- Go home and relax.
- Go home and see if Jane has another job for you.
- Check with the Agency for a job.


Dancing among the faeries
Lenora went home, stripping down from her suit and almost instantly leaping into the shower. She did some of her best thinking when she was under the hot spray, just focusing on the way the water felt against her skin. She closed her eyes and let out a soft breath.
She’d have to do research on Smyther and do more jobs in the meantime. She needed the money and she needed to get her name out there.

Lenora washed her hair and finished up, leaving the bathroom and herself smelling like lavender and vanilla. She wrapped the towel tightly around herself and another around her hair. She started doing some research on Smyther, but not before calling Jane.

“So....you’re going to love this.”
And she told her friend about what had happened.
“In the meantime, I need some more work. I could contact the Agency, but...I trust you more.”
"That complicates things." Jane responded after Lenora's story. "You know that Smyther is not just a villain, he's a fricking mafia boss. I don't like this at all." e Lenora could see her friend's image moving on the holo display and could imagine her pacing around her apartment in thought. "You have to be careful, El." Jane said, stopping and making eye contact. "Let me look into this tonight and I'll contact you in the morning, alright? I'll find you something to do, just don't be rash, you are still quite new at all of this."

After the call was finished, Lenora was able to look through the interweb and find out the information about Smyther, available to the general public. Perhaps the police records held more of it, but she did not have access, nor connections, yet. What she managed to find out was that Smyther held a couple of Generals very close, those were the people one could see him in public with. His Security General was a large man named Boulder. He was essentially a glorified bodyguard. He was the owner of a couple of bars and was often seen the company of Madam Vice, who managed The Shed Club. And there were also Casing and Firebrand, the two of Smyther's most prized Generals, his under-bosses.

It would not be easy to get to any of them.


The next morning begun frantically for Lenora. It started with a loud noise that proved to be her phone and a pop up image of Jane.

"You can't be sleeping now!" She placed a hand on her hips, shaking her head. "I found a lead for you, El. Get up and get to the Millennia City News Agency. I have a friend there who is willing to meet with you. She is an investigative journalist and might have something very good on Smyther for you."

- Go to the News Agency.
- Investigate on your own.


Dancing among the faeries
“You know Jane, I think your family missed out on calling you Dawn. Because you’re bright, beautiful and get me up in the morning.”
Lenora blew a kiss in Jane’s direction, while getting up to get ready for the day. She dressed accordingly, depending if Jane had told her friend to look out for ‘Quantum’ or Lenora.
"Ugh, that would have been a really gross thing to say if you were a guy." Jane frowned, but soon her frown became a smirk. "Go do you job, woman." She winked.


Chapter III - Trouble in sight

It was a terribly rainy day and despite her flying ability that got her faster from one point to the other, Lenora was soaking wet as she walked into the hall of the Millennia City's News. At least her Quantum costume was made out of a material that made the rain drops simply slide off of it, but the strands of her hair were plastered to her face.

The receptions gave her one scan over, not really fazed by the appearance of a Powered hero. They were quite the common thing those days and they often gave interviews for the papers and news.

"How can I help you, ma'am?" Was the only thing he asked. Jane told her the name of the reporter - Gloria Snow, but she did not tell her whether to use her name or her alias, so it was up to her if she wanted to reveal her identity.

- Introduce yourself and ask for Gloria.
- Give your alias and ask fro Gloria.
- Just ask for Gloria.
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Dancing among the faeries
Lenora inhaled, before smiling at the receptionist, forgetting about the mask for a moment. She could just ask for Gloria Snow and hope that the introduction would sort itself out.
“I’m here to speak with Miss Gloria Snow.”
She kept her tone polite, but her words were kept short and to the point. She wanted information. She needed it.
"Nice to meet you..." Gloria scanned her outfit. "Quantum, I presume. Jane told me a lot about you. And I am frankly glad that someone else is looking into that vile man." She gave Lenora a big smile and a firm shake of the hand as she led her into her office.

They sat at a table, behind which was a huge flat screen showing the current broadcast of the News Channel. It was quite distracting, but Gloria did not seem to mind it, as she turned to Lenora to speak.

"I have been investigating The Splice Circle for four years now and I have not gained much favor with villains of the City because of that. They are a ruthless group and nothing is too low for them. But-"

The lights in the room suddenly flickered and the big screen turned off. It was a brief power outage.

"That's strange." Gloria said, walking over to the window to look outside.

There was another flicker and then the screen blinked on again. Lenora was treated to a view of the top of the News Agency building. Standing front and center was an unfortunately familiar figure in orange, but this time without the hood. His bare, muscular arms were crossed over his chest and a mask obscured the upper part of his face. A smug smile revealed gleaming, too-white teeth.

Gloria gasped. "Firebrand!"

Firebrand couldn't possibly hear Gloria where he was, but his smile broadened. He idly took out a little bomb from his pouch, which he toyed with in one hand as he spoke.

"Greetings." He saaid. "So sorry to interrupt your viewing pleasure. I know how we all just love hearing the news about our glorious City. But I'm afraid we have something of a hostage situation on our hands."

He was clearly taking about the whole building. Lenora was trapped.

- Panic.
- Stay calm and think.
- Wait to hear what else Firebrand has to say.
- Calm Gloria down.
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Dancing among the faeries
Lenora started cursing softly, before turning to Gloria and gripping her shoulders. She needed everyone to stay calm and right now the nearest person was her.
“Listen to me. We can’t help anyone if you freak out. Take a deep breath and calm down.”

She turned her head back to the screen, watching and waiting for what Firebrand would do or say next. She needed to listen to figure out how to save the people in this building.
"Yes... yes, you are right. Okay... I'm calm." Gloria answered, taking a deep breath.

"Let's start with the bad news..."Firebrand continued over the screen. "I've set up an incendiary bomb somewhere in the building. Fifteen minutes from now -woosh - the place goes up in flames."

He continued to play with the little bomb in his hands, grinning into the camera. Behind Lenora, it sounds like the people in the offices near Gloria's were starting to panic.

"But I'm not a monster." Firebrand spoke. "No matter what the newspapers say. Everyone should have their chance and that's what those fifteen minutes are. I'm giving our friends inside fifteen minutes to clear out of the building. Then the flames go up and I'll just sit here fighting off your firefighters until Millennia City's News Agency is nothing but ashes. You can watch. It'll be quite a show."

The grin grew wider. He clenched his fist around the bomb, which burst like a bubble of lava, leaving him unijured.

"Unless, of course, I get a million dollars."

Nobody was listening anymore, it seemed. People were scrambling for the exits outside of the office.

"This must be documented." Gloria said suddenly, reaching for her miniature camera. "I am a reporter first and foremost."

- The bomb is probably somewhere secluded, like the basement, try searching for it.
- Agree with Gloria and accompany her wherever she's headed.
- You can take Firebrand head on, he's just one man.
- Focus on getting the people out.


Dancing among the faeries
“Gloria. The people are more important than the story. Help me get them out and then I can kick his ass.”
Lenora grinned a little under her mask, before heading past Gloria and going past people, directing a few to the exit. She helped where she could, calling out for people to follow her.

She tried to be as quick as possible, as thorough. She hoped she could stop him before he actually did blow the place up.
"Suit yourself, I'm getting the footage." Gloria said as they both left the office, but in opposite directions.

Lenora moved to join the crowd rushing toward the exit. It was a bit of a mad scramble and she could see immediately that the rush to get out was actually slowing everyone down. If they were going to get out of there untoasted, she had to do something.

She had to raise her voice to command the crowd to form an orderly queue. People respond to authority and as long as she sounded like she was on top of the situation, everyone looked to her for direction. It wasn't long before Lenora got everyone out of the corridors and toward the main hallway on the ground floor.

It was then that it hit her suddenly that she didn't hear the fire alarm. The manual pull for the alarm was right beside the door, but activating it didn't seem to do anything. If the fire alarm's been put out of commission, did that mean that everyone up in administration was blissfully unaware of their danger?

An older man in a suit beside her, noticed Lenora's worry and approached her, speaking silently, not to panic the others. "Anyone still on the top floors of the building without their TV turned on is not currently aware what is happening. I'm heading up to the offices to warn them. You coming?"

- Go with him.
- Go to the security to activate the fire alarm.
- Go to the security to see what is wrong.


Dancing among the faeries
“You go up. I’ll pull the fire alarm. If that doesn’t work...I’ll come up and start carrying people out if I have to.”
Lenora whispered back, her hand gripping his shoulder in an encouraging and promising way.
She tried to offer him some comfort before she ran off to security.

She could pull the fire alarm and see what was going on. She needed to.

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