Logs:The Assault on Gander Mountain

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The Assault on Gander Mountain

Characters: Essie and Orion
Date: 2020-07-03
Summary: Orion wanders into a sporting goods store at closing time to obtain a bow, with a blatant disregard for how capitalism works. Essie tries to deescalate the resulting catastrophe.
Disclaimers: Some language and bullets.

Soundtrack to a weapon retrieval: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5EqdHxLoWFM

10:50 PM, a New Orleans summer evening, Gander Mountain Sporting Goods Store...


"The store will be closing soon, please make your way to the nearest cashier," echoes a tired employee's voice over the intercom of the large sporting goods superstore. The just-too-bright lights hum in grim defiance of the dark night that's fallen outside, splashing the place in yellowish color. Most of the store is busy closing up, just as a somewhat dirty man in a dark longcoat strolls in.

Orion's new, black coat doesn't exactly fit him: the sleeves are a bit too long, and the hem falls just past his knees, concealing the rest of his outfit. He's left most of his gear in a backpack hidden in an alleyway nearby, so he's only wearing 'street clothes' scavenged from a laundromat. The longcoat's hood is up and over his head, partially obscuring his cleanly symmetrical features. Only his eyes are pinpricks of golden cinder within the shadows of the hood. Most conspicuously... he's not wearing shoes. His bare feet are dirty and dark, crusts of mud and specks of grass along the edges. It's dried, though, so he's only leaving specks of earth instead of great muddy footprints as he strolls onto the clean tile floors of Gander Mountain.


A male employee managing the desk, with Rasta-dreadlocks in his dark hair, looks up and groans at the mud on the freshly mopped floors. "Ah, hey man, we're closing up... and you can't come in here without shoes, man," he says in Orion's direction, starting to draw himself up to deal with this unruly customer. He starts walking around the desk as Orion moves towards one of the aisle. "Hey, did you hear me? You can't be in here." The employee loudly projects, rounding a corner to chase the man... and finding that the fellow that he was chasing has abruptly disappeared from sight, as if into thin air. "What the... where did he go?"

Orion gets 3 successes on a Stealth roll to go unnoticed. Essie gets 3 successes on a Perception check to spot him.

Essie surely hears the announcement about the closing time and need to take purchases to the nearest cashier, but it doesn't seem to motivate the woman to move any quicker, still perusing the variety of athletic shoes available. While unlike a certain Lost, she does have shoes on at the moment although they have certainly seen much better days and look like they might fall apart at any moment. What does draw her attention however is the commotion at the front as she picks up the man saying someone can't be there and curiously peeks her head around the aisle, glancing about as if to catch sight of the mystery man and only sees the speckled dirt on the floor and gives a shrug. "Maybe he went to grab some shoes?"

The interior of a superstore is a strange new realm to Orion. A wild-life diorama with lifelike deer figures mock-drinking from a pond fueled by a running fountain pump keeping the water circulating. Orion pauses in front of them, predator-still, for a few moments before reaching out one dirty hand to brush the faux-fur of the nearest deer. "What the...?" He mutters to himself. English has come back to him from somewhere in his memories rapidly enough, but he's still lost in this strange artificial landscape of modern New Orleans. But then he's setting off again with a glance over his shoulder to dodge potential pursuit, not quite understanding the utility of security cameras.


But the security cameras certainly believe in Orion. A phone call up to security and they're already trying to hone in on his position, though he moves quickly and the general principles of sneakery are consistent across all possible universes in the Hedge and Arcadia, as well as Earth. He crosses between the aisles of offered-up equipment (pffft, 'merchandise') with keen flickers of his golden-amber eyes, searching out for what his heart desires the most. Shoes are important, certainly, but they are secondary to the thing he really wants... it takes a few minutes, and an unprepared security guard is on his way down from his office by that point, but eventually Orion finds the object of his quest. The archery section.

Things are getting weird, but that also means they're getting interesting as far as Essie is concerned! She may not be a magic-made hunter, but all her training and augmentations have seemed to hone in on the fact that some sort of hunt might be afoot here. She grabs the box of nikes she had been pondering and tucks them under her arm as she takes up the trail, trying to be sneaky herself as she makes her way closer towards Orion and that archery section. Unlike the Lost however, she does seem to be mostly mindful of where she would assume security cameras might be, trying to keep to those blind spots as often as possible.

The rack of hunting bows and arrows fills up Orion's eyes, and he's totally oblivious to the idea that he could be observed... or pursued. Essie or the approaching security guard, he's completely uncaring about both of them. Ever since he lost his last bow, there's been an absence in his heart where an archery instrument ought to be... and here they are, all polished and laid out for him. Forget shoes, this is what matters.

With an easy leap, Orion vaults over the glass counter, placing his palm against it (and unaware of the idea of fingerprints, not that statues leave fingerprints). Then he's on the other side of the counter and taking one of the shiny compound bows down off the rack as if he owned the place, easily lifting up an arrow from one of the display quivers. Almost without thinking, and definitely without looking, he turns and fires the arrow off into the store. It whistles before piercing through the head of one of the display-deer with pinpoint accuracy. He shakes his head. "Nah, too stiff," he mutters, placing the bow back on the counter reverently and picking up another one. He casually nocks another arrow, piercing through a jumping fish suspended overtop the water's surface of the diorama with another 'twunk' of the bow.

Orion voluntarily dramatic-fails on a Perception check to notice Essie and the approach of the security guard, and gets 4 successes on an Archery roll for the trick-shooting.

Even from the relative safety behind an aisle endcap, Essie's eyes widen as she watches the man jump behind the counter and then actually shoot an arrow into the occupied store. She really should have brought popcorn for this, and she's definitely not stepping in yet, although she'll stick around for the show. Especially when she hears the security guard on his radio around the time the man's second shot is being fired. "Trevor... go ahead and call the PD. Looks like we got another tweaker on our hands. Again." His voice totally resigned as he doesn't get paid anywhere near enough for this crap.

Orion spend a willpower and gets 2 successes on a trick shot archery roll at -3 to pin the guard with arrows without injuring him.

Nope, that bow's not good enough either. Orion doesn't treat the bows badly as he discards them, but they're left forgotten on the glass countertop by the archery section. He doesn't notice the buzzing of the security guard's radio or his tweaker-exasperation, so absorbed is he in the discovery of new ways of making bows. It's only when the security guard approaches the glass counter, saying "Hey, alright, it's time to get lost for the night, guy," that Orion takes note of the man. He pulls up two arrows from a nearby quiver and casually draws one back on the bow, firing cleanly at the man's leg. It catches the slack of the security guard's pant leg and keeps going, slamming into the metal structure of the equipment stand behind the guard and pinning him there. Then Orion draws the second arrow back and repeats the trick with the other pant leg, restraining the guard by his legs.

That's literally all of the regard that Orion gives the man, however, regarding his new bow with appreciation. "Huh. This one isn't too bad. Looks like they aren't all complete incompetents here in this world," he mutters to himself, weighing the bow with a joyful heft against the palm of his right hand.

"You sonnuvabitch! What was that?! You...!" Meanwhile, the security guard is trying to struggle free against the pinning of the arrows.

Essie rolls Persuasion to talk Orion out of leaving and deescalate the situation, and voluntarily dramatic fails (being identified as an accomplice).

Firing against inanimate objects is one thing, but firing against seemingly innocent security guards might be another and Essie finally steps out from her hiding spot, shoe box still tucked under her arm while the other is held out in a sort of peaceable gesture. "Hey, buddy. Why don't you just scram? You got your bow. Take some arrows and head out before he rips out of those pants?" She tries to be convincing, even with an effort at a smile to the possibly tweaking bow hunter which even though Essie was trying to come to the defense of the security guard, seems to get him even more irate as he's radioing. "TREVOR. HE SHOT ME! AND HE'S GOT A FRIEND!"

Orion gets 5 successes on a trick-shooting roll at -3 to further pin Trevor (the other security guard) and maintain the pin on the yelling one using Combat Archery 4 to target multiple people.

Orion gets the Inspired: Escape condition from the exceptional success.

"All of you are so loud, here," Orion says at the sudden appearance and the escalating situation, looking between the two with cool and unimpressed amber eyes. The suggestion to pick up a quiver from Essie /is/ a good one, though, and he slings a quiver over his shoulder and begins casually filling it up with arrows. A few arrows that are still lying around are scooped up just as running footsteps bring another security guard, the much-referenced Trevor (a middle-aged man with closely shaved broken hair and a crooked nose) comes skidding into view around a corner, all panic and a brandished taser. He doesn't get too far, though, as Orion pulls back an arrow onto the bow in his hand and fires it in another trick shot, this time pinning the shirt slack under Trevor's arm-pit. The arrow whistles through the fabric before knocking him backwards and into an exhibit of fishing supplies, which collapse onto him with a crash!

Then Orion turns and, with only a contemptuous glance of his golden eyes, fires another shot at the first security guard. Just as the guard struggles free of the pinning arrows with a RIIIIIIP of his black pants, Orion's next arrow arcs into the man's shirt and pins him to a camouflaged clothing mannequin behind him, proudly displaying hunting colors. More loud cursing follows this unusual feat of archery prowess.

Then he's looking over to Essie, still with a 100-yards gaze that seems to look past woman with pink highlights. "Scram? From the sound of it, you should also... scram," he says, tasting the word on his tongue like it were a strange bit of food. Something strikes him, a thought, and his cold-blooded gaze grows a degree softer. "Do you need any help with that? Leaving?" He's also grabbing a backpack off the hunting display as he talks, slinging it over his shoulder casually and beginning to stuff it full of clothing and other survival supplies... casually ransacking the joint over the shouting and cursing of Trevor and his unfortunate partner.

Essie hears that radio'ing and takes a half second to shoot the first security guard with a 'how dare he' look as she is declared an accomplice but she shakes her head and springs into motion quickly enough, heading past the arrow-rummager. "Apparently, it is closing time after all. There's a back door, I'm sure I can find it. I'd recommend you run as well. Don't think the arrow trick will work so well if multiple cop cars arrive soon." The advice is giving with a sort of casual shrug as she already begins heading deeper into the store, not really concerned if Orion is following or not. He does make a convenient distraction if she needs one for her own getaway.

Orion gets 1 success on an Athletics roll to move quickly… but thinks better of leaving and decides to go shoe-shopping instead.

What's a 'cop car?' Orion has no idea, his fragmented and jumbled memories of this place don't cover the police. So he just shrugs and carries on with his merry looting, leaping back over the counter and going to find... shoes. Now that his bow has been taken care of, he needs something for his feet, after all. And a bath, a bath sounds nice... his mind is wandering as the two security guards continue to struggle free against the powerfully driven arrows pinning them down. Quiver and backpack slung over each of his shoulders by the strap, compound bow in his hand, Orion half-strolls, half-jogs over to the shoes section of Gander Mountain, indifferent to Essie's abrupt departure.

It's not long before flashing red and blue lights arrive outside the store, just as Orion's finishing trying on a new and well-fitted pair of shoes. A discarded stack of shoeboxes lies next to him, shoes spilling out over the mopped tile floor like a chaotic stain. A few officers run in through the front automatic sliding doors, weapons drawn and shoulder radios chirping.

"We're over here!" Trevor yells, still digging himself free of fishing equipment as he spots the arrival of the police.

Essie gets… 15 successes on an Athletics roll to leap free of danger once outside.

At the sound of the sirens, Essie makes true to her word and books it on out of there as soon as she finds the emergency exit. Sure, it causes the alarms to go off, but she doesn't care and the officers seem more concerned about the man with the bow. She leaps her way through the parking lot before dashing off into the pseudo-darkness of the city evening. But at least she got a free pair of shoes out of it.

Orion involuntarily unleashes Bedlam… and dramatically fails, causing all of the security guards and police to feel extreme hatred/antipathy for him.

Orion then spends his Inspired condition to run away, with 2 successes on an Athletics roll.

"These will have to do," Orion mutters to himself as he finishes tightening up the newfound shoes that he's acquired, standing up to his feet with a light hop. The officers find him a minute or two later, weapons leveled at him and hostility evident. "Get on the ground or we'll blast you!" One of the officers declares, pistol leveled directly at Orion. "Hands in the air!" the other one shouts. The sudden burst of hostility and violence triggers something deep inside of Orion, and his golden eyes abruptly glow lambent, crackling with an inner electricity. Bedlam is unleashed like a tidal wave, rolling through the store and inflicting emotions upon the guards and police who are witness to him... and that emotion is intense hatred for this bow-wielding tweaker, specifically.

"He's gonna shoot! Take him down!" The first officer declares, pulling the trigger of his pistol even as Orion prepares for violence, circulating his glamour and calling up the stone skin of his Mien to just under the surface. The reports of gunfire echo through the wide ceiling-ed rooms of Gander Mountain as the two officers begin to fire on Orion, bullets punching holes through his black longcoat.

But Orion's skin is made of stone, and the projectiles just bounce off and fall to the ground. There is a split second where Orion considers fighting back... but then he's fleeing in the opposite direction under the hail of gunfire, dodging and weaving and occasionally having a bullet 'ping' off of his skin and puncture his clothing.

"What the.. I'm sure I hit him! Do you see blood?" One of the cops says to the other. Trevor looks disbelievingly in the direction where Orion fled. "I think that guy's on PCP or angel dust or some shit," the security guard supplies unhelpfully, trying to free a stray fish-hook from where it's lodged in his ripped up blue uniform shirt.

Orion, for his part, makes it out into the back alley behind Gander Mountain while only lightly winded. "Time to go," he mutters to himself, picking up a scavenged trash bag in the alley full of his armor and weapons that he left outside as he begins to make his escape... unaware that the police might get around to pursuing him in their vehicles.