Faulty Wiring: An Explosive Meal


Hopper_icon.jpg Aillen_Icon.jpg Jocelyn_icon.jpg

Scene Title Faulty Wiring: An Explosive Meal
Synopsis What starts out as a peaceful lunch at Scion High ends in violence as an oven goes on a fiery rampage.

Cafeteria - James Madison High School

The cafeteria has all the comforts and amenities of any other high school cafeteria, crappy food, surly lunch ladies and lots of sticky stuff on the floor to get on your shoes. The walls are painted a light blue on the lower half and a yellow on the upper half, an attempt at some kind of artistic two-tone appearance. In some locations, the walls have been re-painted with student murals as part of art projects with interesting pictures and designs, as well as some things that are just plain weird.

The Cafeteria is arguably one of the largest areas in the school, easily able to accommodate a thousand starving young teenagers, all vying for their favorite tables and so called best spots. Row after row of sturdy wooden tables occupy one end of the cafeteria, with matching chairs that look like they might be from the eighties or nineties, while the other half of the cafeteria is filled with sturdier more modernized thick plastic tables and newer, less dingy seats, making this side of the room, a far more desirable and trendy place to sit.

There are an assortment of vending machines with different brand of soft drinks ranging from coca-cola products to pepsi-cola products, as well as snack machines and even a row of microwaves for the students who bring lunch from home. Past the vending machines, the cafeteria proper ends as it moves into the area filled with the various assortment of less then home cooked meals available to students, all served up with a grin and a smile. Mystery meat anyone?

The cafeteria is as usual packed, crowded, noisy and smells of concoctions only the most imaginative of uses of the English language could call "Food". Still it was to this place that all flocked, some stomaching the concoctions as a display of their intestinal fortitude, others having brought food from home in their various food transportation containers. And those who were most wise (or those who could at least afford to do so) had acquired their food from nearby vendors outside the school.

Amongst those who have managed the feat of acquiring food from nearby food establishments is Aillen, who is apparently sitting by himself at a table, an oddity except for those who knew the table and those who sat there. It is a table that the assorted group populated by fellows like Hopper, Dion and others of that group were generally occupying. It seems that the new guy to the school, with the tattoos and occasional brogue, has managed to take up some residence amongst that sort as well, and he has a lovely Styrofoam container in front of him, steaming with the smell of Greek food as a gyro sits upon a bed of lettuce within it, with a pile of golden fries like a halo around the glorious food stuffs.

Ah, lunch time - that bustling, hurried, noisy time where students attempt to finish up incomplete homework, catch up with friends, and gobble down some form of what passed for a nutritional meal according to the various government regulations. Honestly, only those who have never seen it in person consider the slop served here food - most others consider it toxic waste and failed biology experiments. Only the desperate and insane attempted to stomach the cafeteria offerings - the sane either brought their own, or managed to procure fresh food from the area.

Jocelyn almost always brought her own lunch, more out of convenience than anything. Sure - she knew where the good spots were to get a hot meal, but honestly, the walk out and back took time away from her favorite lunch tasks: eavesdropping and gossiping. Lunch at the school was prime gossip time, and Jo wasn't about to pass up this opportunity for the sake of a warm meal. As such, her bologna and cheese sandwich sat largely untouched beside her open notebook, the rest of her food not even unpacked from the small green lunch bag. She sits at one of the smaller tables, just off from the middle of the cafeteria, not on the new side, not on the old side. Her left hand moves fluidly over the pages of her notebook, neatly looping black inked cursive noting what she heard and saw. Occasionally someone stops by the table, offering some tidbit or lamenting their own issues, but for some odd reason, the table stays empty, save for the young Greek.

Half of the container was already empty by the time Aillen bothers to come up for air as it were from his consumptive activity, the gyro itself gone aside from some small portions of Tzatziki sauce piled on a piece of lettuce, and the pile of fries kept in its neat nest around where the pocket of meat once resided. A satisfied sigh though frees itself from his lips as he wipes off a few bits that have fallen on his shirt.

As his eyes pass over the allotted crowds, he has a smile across his lips as wandering eyes taking in the young ladies of the school, a few looking his way. Seeing the other empty table though, his eyes take in Jocelyn writing at her own table. He gives a grin as he flicks a wadded up piece of paper through the air, the wad whirling to land in front of her open tome.

Jocelyn starts slightly as the crumpled bit of paper lands in front of her notebook. It's honestly quite rare for someone to actually notice her sitting there, let alone fling bits of rubbish at her - she's honestly rather taken aback. Placing her pen down on the notebook, she glances about the lunchroom, trying to find just who was throwing things at her.

Ultimately, her eyes settle on Aillen, who is grinning like a fool from a nearby, also empty table. Her brown eyes narrow at him and she sighs heavily, closing the worn black notebook and stowing it and her largely untouched lunch into her messenger bag. She picks up the offending bit or rubbish, and wanders over to stand beside his chair - for once actually standing taller than him.

"Honestly, can't a girl get some writing done around here?" she smirks and tosses the paper back at him, "I'm going to be horribly behind on my notes if you keep interrupting me."

It is a quiet day at the school. Hopper has been actually 'good' for almost a month now. He's been too tuned into his little science experiments to actually get into too much trouble. With no pranks happening, the Football team and Cheerleaders are having a most needed vacation from his warped sense of humor, though many of them are wary of him, just in case his mischievous streak comes back. He moves into the lunchroom looking tired and in bad need of some food and caffeinated beverages.

Aillen is sitting at the table that Dion was normally at, the one he had met Hopper at that first time. As Jocelyn approaches with the offending piece of paper, he chuckles and holds out the Styrofoam container filled with fries. "I offer these french fries from afar as bribery to prevent my imminent death?" He grins to her as he spins about at the table to face her. "Someone’s got to keep the world from falling into static boredom. And at least I didn't throw the fries. I figured that would just end poorly, and quite likely to have spurned a food fight. I'm good enough at getting food dropped on myself without having people particularly aiming for me. "

Jocelyn smirks a bit, "Uh huh, found out about my weakness for good food, and now attempting to placate me with such things. And thanks for not throwing the fries - that would be a horrid waste." Despite her mocking protest, she munches on a few fries, discovering that they are rather excellent. She doesn't take a seat at the table, though, and prefers to remain standing, knowing the rather bothersome politics of lunchroom tables, and having no desire to intrude upon the space of a social circle to which she didn't quite belong. It was one of the few - but she prefers to stay on the marginally neutral side, and didn't want to take anyone's seat.

Jo glances up as Hopper enters the lunchroom, tipped off by the lull in conversations as the young man passes certain more 'popular' tables. She still remains standing beside Aillen's chair, surreptitiously sneaking fries, while still continuing to look around the cafeteria.

Hopper makes his way through the line in no time, coming late has its advantages. He grabs a bag of chips, a couple of slices of pizza and a diet mountain dew before he heads over to Aillen's table to plot down in a seat. "Hows it goin'?" He asks curiously as he opens the bag of chips and pops one in his mouth.

Bobbing his head in greeting he smiles to Hopper as he drops down in the seat. "Things are going pretty good, aside from the school work, and most other aspects of education aside from the socializing." He shifts the container of fries to be easier for Jocelyn to steal from. "Speaking of which, Jo, this would be one Jackson Hopper, Hopper, this is Jocelyn, called Jo." He brushes a napkin over the dropped tzatziki on his shirt again before resigning himself with a sigh. "Probably one of the only times she gets to be taller than me is standing, and I'd hate to ruin that moment for her by offering a seat." He grins and looked to Hopper, "Course would probably be polite of us and all, no?" He tenses as if expecting a hit he knew was coming.

Jo nods in greeting to Hopper, "Ah, nice to meet you, Hopper, Aillen's mentioned you a few times - it's nice to actually get to meet you," the young woman smiles congenially at Hopper. Her grin turns into a rather burning glare directed at the side of Aillen's head, "And way to pick on the short chick, you over-tall cad." She flops rather unceremoniously into the seat beside him, making her quite notably shorter than him again. At his slight wince, she quirks an eyebrow, "Have you really been smacked that many times by women that you automatically expect it when you talk to them?" Jo shakes her head and sighs, continuing to snag the occasional fry from the Styrofoam container.

Hopper nods his head to Jocelyn and offers a quick, "Hi there," before looking down to the bag and offering. "That's fuckin' wierd… says' they taste like cheeseburgers and they do… It's like Meat, cheese and pickles in my mouth." He puts the bag down and pushes them away. "That's fucked up." There is a clatter from the kitchen and a moment later the lunch lady comes running out the doors in a panic, looking behind her and making a whimpering noise as her corpulous body jiggles as she makes tracks for the door, weeping and whimpering the entire way. The majority of the kids pause to watch this scene with some manner of curiosity.

Raising a brow when the lunch lady ran out of the kitchen, Aillen focuses his attention in that direction, figuring some kid had played a prank on her and that everyone would start laughing. When she bolts for the door whimpering and crying he looks to Hopper, "Not one of your pranks was it?" and stands up to get a better view. "I mean, I'd expect a shriek and some screaming and running maybe" shaking his head as he stands up on the balls of his feet to peer over other heads "but crying? I mean what would do that?"

Jo grimaces at the description of the potato chips, thinking that the combination sounds just awful. Science has given us great things, but some stuff, like cheeseburger potato chips, should just be left to the imagination. The whimpering lunch lady catches Jo's attention, and the short-statured young woman hops up on her chair in an attempt to give herself a better view over the sea of tall students, looking back towards the door the woman had emerged from, since everyone else is watching the woman leave.

-KRAK-a-BOOM- There is a huge explosion that blows the door of the kitchen off it's hinges and into the sea of unsuspecting students. A waft of flame erupts and scorches the ceiling. All hell breaks loose. Kids start screaming and running in all manner of directions, knocking each other out of the way and fighting to get out of the room that is starting to get very warm.

Hopper pauses for a moment as he watches her. "It's not me…." he slowly turns his attention towards the door and his eyes go wide. "DOWN!" With that, he dives under the table a split second before the explosion happens.

At Hoppers warning Aillen was already moving, grabbing Jocelyn from the chair and sliding her beneath the table with Hopper as he drops to the ground himself. With the flames beginning to kick up, and not wanting to rely on the hopes that the fire suppression systems were automated, Aillen grabs an apple rolling by, scorched from the explosion a bit itself. "Gah, hot apple!" he winces and chucks it with wicked speed, the apple curving slightly in the air with the spin given it to swerve by someone’s head as they were running out of the cafeteria into the fire alarms familiar red box, shattering the little glass tube and setting the alarm as it splattered into applesauce against the box.

Jocelyn turns to Hopper as he yells, "Huh?" she starts to get out, but is interrupted by Aillen grabbing her, a rather shocked squeak escaping her mouth as she's dragged off her perch and under the table rather unexpectedly. As the explosion and resulting fire sound through the cafeteria, she winces slightly, feeling the searing heat from the fire. She reaches into her canvas bag with one hand, groping about for her small turtle shell bowl among her other possessions, looking about for some potable liquid, and only seeing Hopper's Diet Mountain Dew within reach. She finds the small bowl she was looking for, and pulls it out of the bag, reaching for the mountain dew, "Ugh - I need to start carrying a bottle of water with me so I don't have to just keep using soda." She offers a sheepish grin, "I'm sorry - I'll buy you another soda after we make it out of here, I promise." She fills the small bowl with soda, still leaving quite a bit in the bottle. She mutters very quietly in Greek as she does this, and stares into the bowl.

Hopper offers a quiet shudder himself. "Uhm…they are going to kill themselves if we don't get them to calm the hell down." He indicates the grouping of students who are mobbing the small exits. Soon there is a 'fsss' from the fire sprinklers as water starts to pour down. The door to the kitchen being gone, one who can see through smoke and such might see something mechanical in the kitchen moving about. Making its way to the door…. looks like an oven…. with…. some sort of mechanical legs and arms. It is currently belching fire.

"Well here's hoping nobody is watching me too closely then. Rather not get an expulsion for being a hero." Aillen nods to the others a moment as he places his left hand over his right bracelet as he keeps his hand low to the ground. The same canine type presence Jocelyn had felt when the sharks had shown comes once more as Gae Bolga now rests in Aillen's hand against the ground. "Nothing like a bit of courage to calm the masses aye?" He gives a wink as he stands up, water rushing down his body, his foot resting on the legendary weapon as he throws his free arm up into the air with a shout. "Courage! Get your arses in gear and stop being pansies! It’s just fire ya buncha twits! Just give a good jog and get outa here, not crush everybody!" His voice resounds over the sounds of falling water and roaring flame as it touches each person who hears it with the virtue of heroes.

"Oh good gods - is there nothing they won't put an AI in these days?!" Jocelyn yells over the thundering of the water as she looks up from her scrying bowl, "It looks like the oven has gone on the fritz. A horribly murderous, destructive, fiery fritz. And it's currently stomping towards the door." The young woman mutters her thanks in Greek again, and downs the contents of the bowl, grimacing at the taste of the diet soda as she stows the bowl back in her bag.

Jo rolls out from beneath the table just after Aillen stands, very distinctly avoiding touching Gae Bolga. She stands beside him at the table, her hand at her necklace, looking about the room for stragglers who may not have gotten out in the initial rush. Ignoring the fact that she's being drenched by the fire suppression system, she looks between Aillen and Hopper, "So, do we have a plan for taking out some sort of mechanical fire breathing stove monster?"

Aillen nods his head. "Well we've got a stove monster, right? So maybe it’s like that thing we had the other night at the movies, Jo. Maybe it’s got that stuff you and that weird guy were hacking at and we just need to chop it off and its down for the count? Course then we've got another weird ghost thing popping up and all. Or, it’s some weird highly technological monstrosity. " He gives a shrug. "No clue what it is, but seems nonetheless we've gotta stop it for it busts through that door frame. We've got a sec though, 'less it can shoot fireballs out here. Speaking of which, mind a second?

Aillen grabs hold of the table and with a grunt he lifts it up and tilts it on its side between them and it. "It’s not much, but gives us another few seconds before being toasted, right? So it’s metal, right?" He looks to Jo, who had seen it better, for confirmation. "So if it’s metal, probably something sparky will take it easier than just a good old fashioned stabbing. Hell, I try and put gae bolga in it and it'll just give me a bad day. So you think you two could whip up something to shock it while I keep it busy? I could toss those soda machines at it in the meanwhile, buy some time and maybe cool it down a bit. Less you've got a better idea?" He gives a grin and pops his head up over the table again to look at the doorframe and the stove monster.

The monstrosity before you is something out of a 50's B movie and an uncannily real terminator movie. While the design of the creature is make shift in it's appearance, it bears an eerie amount of technical components. For example, the box like structure of its body has a sort of Donna Reed feel to it. However, the mouth of the oven opens up via a set of jagged tooth-like doors. It has arms and legs made up of a number of other kitchen devices, each working in a different way, causing it to move in a blocky sort of manner. However there are mixtures of technologies that give is a steam-punk edge to it.

Jocelyn crouches behind the table with Hopper and Aillen, slipping her messenger bag off her shoulder in order to have better mobility. She edges closer to the edge of the table, moving carefully on the wet flooring. "Alrighty," the young Greek mutters to no one in particular, "Let's see just what we are up against here…" Jo pauses, and peeks quickly around the edge of the table, her brown eyes quickly focusing on the makeshift mechanical monster, looking the foe over quickly, attempting to assess just how it measured up against them. Almost as fast as she stuck her head around the edge, she ducks back to the relative safety of the table, panting slightly as she sits for a moment. "Damn that thing is ugly," she grimaces, nodding her head in the general direction of the oven thing.

Hopper swallows hard and drops his backpack to the ground with a loud clatter. And a moment later he is on his knees, unzipping and pulling out two strange looking mechanical components that he twists into place with a well practiced motion before he stands up, holding what looks to be some sort of Buck Rogers super soaker. He peeks around the other end of the table at the creature and then swallows even harder. "Ok, ok." He sucks in a breath, turns and waits for the correct moment before he pulls the trigger, the gun whirrs once and suddenly sprays a glob of black fluid at the creature, landing in the vicinity of it's feet.

Jocelyn shouts to the other two, fidgeting with her caduceus necklace, "Alrighty, that big nasty thing is bigger, stronger, faster, and generally all around more awesome than I am, and presumably at least marginally better than the both of you, in theory," she takes a deep breath and continues, "There are tanks, of what I think is gas or some sort of fuel on the back of it, and when it opens its mouth, there's a little pilot light at the back that it has to spark before it can shoot yon fireballs of doom," she grimaces, "Not sure exactly how long we have between mouth opening and spark, but it could be an exploitable weakness. I think it makes sort of a clicky-click noise in the split second before the roaring fwoosh and fiery ball."

The young woman leans her back to the table, listening for the sounds of the stove, the creaking of the door, and the click click click before the next woosh. Jo places her left hand close to the floor of the cafeteria, summoning her sword in her hand as inconspicuously as she can, since she really doesn't want to face expulsion for having a weapon in school. She waits for the initial creaking sounds, and springs to her feet, spinning her sword in a horizontal arc just over the table, sending a blast of air along the length of the blade, aimed at the oven beast, attempting to hit it before it before the click-click became a fwoosh. She tries to duck back behind the refuge of the table as soon as she finishes her spin, hiding and waiting for the fireball.

Aillen is already moving towards the soda machines as Jocelyn calls out her information, and a grin passes his lips as an idea comes to mind. He skids to a halt, and giving it a thump, and giving a thumbs up to the others as he yanks it free, twisting the cap and letting it fly free in a single motion. The bottle spins end over end through the air as it whizzed past Hopper and Jo towards the stove of doom. It was positively humming as it whips through the air at speeds few could dream to match as it flew into the stoves maw towards the source of its flame.

The three act at once. And the creature doesn't seem to be expecting the sudden change in tactics. The black fluid hits the feet of the creature, causing it to slow and then stop as it reaches the door proper. With gripping vice-like hands it leans forward and grabs the doorframe and completely yanks it out of the wall, though it cannot advance forward into the room. It isn't going anywhere. However, the Soda Machine crashes just to the left of the creature and while Jocelyn is beyond fast in her action, appearing a literal blur as she rushes you, *pings* against the bot and then comes running back…. so far the score is, it can't move, but it's not looking all that slowed down. It then seems to narrow a sightless gaze at the trio and table before there is a sudden silence and a -tick-tick-tick- sound before it lets out a sudden gout of the fire in the direction of the table and the others. *FWOOOSH* The temperature in the room raises significantly for a few moments. Poor Hopper is sweating like a pig.

With a snarl Aillen flips the legendary spear up into his hand, the water raining down on his head and body keeping him somewhat more resilient against the fire. "Hopper! Get your arse on that thing and see what makes it tick! We'll keep it busy!" He shouts over the roar of the melting table and the sizzle of water against fire. He spins his spear forward, pointing it towards the maw of the beast. "Jo! You take the middle, I'll go low, meet ya on the other side!" He pelts forward, whipping the weapon down and pivoting it with his other hand as he swings with a wicked arc like a golf club towards where the legs connect to the body

Jocelyn scoots away from the melting table, biting her lip and glancing about to find another potential source of cover, since her current position is fast becoming not the safest - and decidedly hotter than is comfortable. She wipes sweat off her face with the back of her hand as the temperature increases, realizing that it's rather futile, since the sprinkler system is just making it worse, crouching in prep for another go at the stove, listening closely for the creaking before the click-click before the boom. She hears Aillen's orders and nods resolutely, and tightening her grip on the sword in her left hand.

Hearing the tell tale creaks and initial click, Jocelyn cries out in fury, swinging her blade in another arc at the open mouth of the oven monster. The force of her swing creates a visible ripple, traveling along the blade, and sailing through the humid air towards the target. She lands in a roll behind another table, upended in the initial explosion and resulting turmoil.

The table melts to a small puddle of molten metal and plastic. Hopper scampers backwards, holding his gun in his hand. Given the go, and the quarterback sneak the other are assisting him with, the results are much better than last time. Jocelyn streaks forward and slashes a deep gash in the creature, severing the lower jaw-flap of the oven, leaving it open enough for Aillen to rush forward and jam his spear through, so much so that it shoots out the other wise.

Hopper takes off after you a moment later, jumping high and twisting through the air, clipping the ceiling enough to knock off his hat, taking out a couple of tiles and breaking a pair of plastic tile frames with his head. He over estimated and isn't made for things like this, but he manages it anyway…. given that he comes down on the head of the spear and not the Oven-Monster. But, given his mobility, he lands on the head with both feet, balances slightly and then turns before grabbing hold of a couple of piping tubes with one hand and one foot, leaving Aillen's spear free.

It doesn't take him long before he is a flurry of motion, yanking plugs and wires here and there in an attempt to depower the thing…. however the creature is insanely perceptive. While taking ungodly damage on the front end, he knows his rear is the weakest point and there is now an enemy behind him. Quickly the vice grip lets go of the wall and in an flash of quickness has it's vices over Hopper, ready to pluck him off like a flea.

Aillen lets out a roar as it grabs Hopper, and he plants his foot into its side wall, and yanked with all his might, his shirt ripping from the strain of holding back divinely empowered muscles competing against the unholy musculature of the beast of metal.

Jocelyn charges from her cover at the monster with a scream, lunging forward with all her might, sword arm raised in prep for a mighty swing. She brings the arm and sword down in a violent swing, the air around the blade making a ‘woosh’ sound as the shock wave hurtles forward at the monstrosity, angling for the joint where the cobbled together arm meets the horrid main body.

There is a sick crunching noise as Hopper opens his eyes wide and tries to let out a scream that comes out a wheeze as he is squeezed hard enough for bones to crack…. and it's not an attractive sound. He goes limp for the most part, fluttering in and out of consciousness before well placed sword strikes leave the arm falling to the ground and the vice opening so that Hopper rolls out in a heap. The entire thing quakes and then finally sputters and collapses in on itself, once Aillen has pulled out the spear from the creatures insides, taking it's backside and pulling parts through the hole the spear made on the way in.

It lays there for a few moments before Hopper offers something weak, "It's… not done…" There is a soft hissing from inside the machine and the smell of propane as gas starts to leak out quickly and you can hear the dull popping of the pilot trying to light itself….

<OOC> Hopper says, "You hear scampering and a giggling from somewhere in the walls."

"Shit! Its gonna blow! Run!" Aillen shouts, of course a second too late as he already sees them doing so. Figuring Jo is faster than him to begin with, and apparently strong enough to heft Hopper easily, he starts bolting for the door. Gae bolga, flung over his shoulder and with a hissing out of a word in Gaelic the weapon disappears into thin air as he sprints toward the door, diving through it as if the hounds of the Hunt were chasing him across the moors.

At the sound of the leaking gas and the damned clicking, Jo's eyes go wide. She allows her sword to fall from her hand as she starts to move, the weapon vanishing into thin air with a slight breeze and the distant sound of wings. Ducking behind the oven, she scoops Hopper into her arms as gently as she can, grimacing slightly, "I'm really sorry, trying to be as gentle as possible." She doesn't slow down, and moves faster than before, shouldering her way through an emergency exit, bursting into the outdoors to escape the coming explosion.

Hopper wheezes softly in Jo's arms. He's got a broken floater and a dislocated shoulder, but he's going to come out on top. "Just go." he mutters in a pained voice as the trio escapes just in time for the entire room to go up in flame as the gas tanks go off. The fire trucks are pulling up already and wouldn't you know it the small lunch crowd that was privy to the incident is working as a team to evacuate the school as quickly as possible… the teachers look impressed.

The first in a series of plot scenes for Hopper. Continued next in Faulty Wiring: After Hours

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