Devil Wings Pre-StrikerS – Interlude 4 Part 1 (of 2? 3? not sure yet)
An "In Flight" omake from the EMIYA CLAN scenario. In memory of Hurricane Sandy during the fall of 2012.
Aftermath of a Storm
"...Cranagan is reeling from the fiercest hurricane to roll up the coast in a century and a half..."
"...Millions are still without main power, and reports of more power loss are being reported every hour as backup generators rated for hours of use break down after two consecutive days..."
"...With so much mass transit unable to function due to flooding and storm damage, Mayor Buick has issued a general release for all flight-certified mages within the city limits. In the official press release this morning, he spoke about 'bus-ing his wife to work', and that he hopes that his example of pitching in will be followed by the masses of the magically-capable..."
"...Some are upset with the 'upper crust' of Cranagan society getting 'preferential treatment' and seeing disaster response teams first. However, it must be remembered that ninety percent of said upper crust have their expensive town houses right on the bay. And even the most expensive Weather Guard commercially available isn't going to cut it against the likes of Hurricane Sandy. Brilliant, isn't it Sara? They put their millions into beachfront property, then have the gall to complain when high tide is ten meters over its usual?"
Poke. "Tom, no social commentary while we're on the air."
The sixty-plus reactivated Disaster Management Corpsman who said his name was 'Bill' slapped his gloved hand over his face. "Lanster!" he bellowed, "Wut did Ah tell yeh 'bout shootin' uncooperative rescue-es?"
Teana Lanster snarled right back, "Not too."
"And wut did this?"
"He knocked himself out."
"...I might have stuck my device in his face and told him he was going..."
"Aw, Tea..." Said Subaru Nakajima from behind the two, carrying a very pregnant woman with easy strides. Said woman was gnawing viciously at a balled up sock, looking for all the world like she was about to start screaming if not for the barrier she herself held in the way with her own hands.
"He said the Corps was shit for letting in 'a little girl who should be home playing with toy fire trucks, since she obvious wasn't up for the task of saving' his home!" Teana growled.
Bill sighed, but he couldn't keep the smile from growing on his face. "A two-week rookie, an' already yeh got the D.M.C.'s pride."
Suddenly the man in Teana's grasp started struggling again.
"N-no! Ir-Irlington! Don't fall! Don't fall—"
Behind them, the western wing of the town house caved inward, the walls buckling and throwing out sparks... of magic.
The veteran's face twisted with both understanding and dismay. "Aw, shit, tha's his workshop!"
Bloodshot eyes whirled from Teana to her temporary boss. "Now do you get it! What I've lost—"
The older man's hand touched the rescued one's forehead. "Feedback Seal."
"[Affirmative,]" his watch chimed.
"—Guh..." The rescuee abruptly stopped struggling with a groan.
Teana blinked. "What."
"Hm... Ah, here's 'is record. D-rank mage, output rated 'B'…"
"Damnit, I'm A-rank!"
"The heck? No way is this bozo—"
"What did you call me!"
"Ahem. As I was saying: Alpha level artificer."
"...I repeat. What."
The man scoffed, but shook his head and stood up, brushing at his wrinkled clothes. "About time I got the recognition I deserved—What? What, old timer? Why are you grinning like that—"
Teana watched the recently-rescued mage be dragged away by his ear, his wife leading. The pregnant woman's long, pointed ears with laid flat against her skull, and tilted slightly downward, indicated her absolute fury.
Then she turned to her boss, and one eyebrow arced.
"Aw, don't worry 'bout it, lass. 'Tis kinda complicated..."
"Oh, oh!" Subaru bounced back into the conversation. "I think I know this one: Tea-chan wants to be an Enforcer!"
However, Bill grinned a knowing grin. "Ah, so tha's why... Officer's School didn't do it for ya, and the Air Force wants what yeh don't have."
Teana's eyes narrowed. "What's it to you?"
He laughed a creaky laugh. "Don't be so defensive, lass. Yanno that Enforcers don't actually know everything, right?"
Snort. "Of course. They know just enough to make you think they do."
"Oh, good, yeh already heard tat one! Well, ok, here's wut I know 'bout mages and 'Territory', note th' capital 'T'..."
By the time the explanation was wrapping up, Teana's teammates were finished with the residents of the rest of the block.
"We're not done yet, are we?" she asked Bill.
"Oh, hell no. Lass, it's time ta grit yer teeth and dig your heels in. Disaster Recovery for the rich? Easy street. Commercial district? Slow, complicated, annoying... still not too hard. Industrial sector? Not our business, they clean up after themselves. Corporate policy, yanno."
Teana and Subaru both blinked, surprised.
"It's time yeh two rookies get in on the toughest o' jobs: economy housing."
"...What's so tough about D.R. in the econ blocks?"
"...Worst are the stories coming from the economy housing blocks, where Weather Guard is at its cheapest or not even applied. The Disaster Management Corps is calling in absolutely everyone: elderly reserves, rookies fresh out of the Mage's Academy, everyone. They are still hard at work forty-eight hours after Sandy left town, so to speak, and show no sign of slowing down... I sure know who I'm raising my glass to, tonight..."