Gunther glanced back to the field, and then turned back toward everyone watching him. “But here’s one of the major things you need to get out of this. Fairness is completely irrelevant. This is combat. Fairness is for games. The whole situation is unfair from the beginning. You’re all a bunch of heroes in training. Chances are, you’re not trying to kill them, but they are trying to kill you. Sure, some of them won’t be. Many, even. No matter how many jewelry stores a guy breaks into, he may still have a set of morals that means he won’t kill, but you know what? That doesn’t matter.”
Despite his topic, Gunther managed to sound slightly amused.
Continue reading Entry Assessment: Part 6
Calvin flew toward us in the air in a leap that had to be getting extra force from the wind behind him, and he wasn’t alone.
Cindy and Paula jumped after him.
It didn’t work out as well as any of them would have expected.
A beam of iridescent light hit Calvin in the air, surrounding him with sparkles that kept on glowing as he flew toward us.
Continue reading Entry Assessment: Part 5
Gunther continued, “The paintbot rounds stand in for the suit’s lasers, and for the explosive rounds which take out most people. Non-lethal rounds are perfectly allowable for this fight, Rocket. Captain Commando, your gun counts as a laser for this. Paint them with light, and you’ll take them out. The sword works too, but don’t turn it on.”
Gunther took in the group of us standing together. “Here’s how this will work: each group fights until there’s a clear winner between the two of you. You’ll need to think about how to do that, but I’m not going to give you time to talk about it.” Continue reading Entry Assessment: Part 4
Several people stood up. None of them looked as impressive as the elite Cabal soldiers we’d fought–the reserves. Nearly immortal, constantly regenerating, they were incredibly strong and extremely tough as well.
Fighting people you could barely hurt who also regenerated had always seemed particularly unfair to me.
The Cabal had other soldiers too. They weren’t as tough, but they had a wider variety of powers. Maybe I was seeing their descendants?
Gunther looked them over, and said, “Any of you who can’t lift more than 20 tons, please sit down.”
None of them sat down. Continue reading Entry Assessment: Part 3
I glanced up at the red, rocky cliff to my left, thinking about how I’d have to run into the parking garage to get to the truck, and walk back.
It wouldn’t be too bad once I got the Rocket suit, but, it looked like a long walk from here.
Turning back to Gunther, I said, “You realize that we’re tired, right? Dr. Nation’s program is all about unpredictably stressing us to the breaking point, and maybe a little past it.”
Gunther nodded. “I’m counting on it. That means you won’t be able to fight for long, and you’ll have to quick, efficient takedowns of anyone you fight.”
“Takedowns? Who are we fighting?”
Gunther grinned, revealing white teeth. “The toughest people in the first year class–at least on paper.”
Continue reading Entry Assessment: Part 2
On Saturday morning, we gathered at the compound’s athletic fields. They had two football/soccer fields with tracks running around them. The first year students gathered in the middle of one and the second, third, and fourth years gathered in the other.
The first years seemed to take up most of the middle of their field, but that wasn’t really true. It wasn’t just them. Adults in costume (both superhero and medical scrubs) were scattered throughout the crowd.
I recognized what they were doing from last year—entry assessment. The program was getting a baseline of their abilities. They’d set up a walled room on one end of the field. I wasn’t sure of the material, but from here it looked like stone.
I didn’t know what kind of powers they had to work with, but an awful lot of powers had the potential to kill if they weren’t contained.
Continue reading Entry Assessment: Part 1