In association with the X-Men Comics group on Facebook, we are proud to present… XvX Round Seven: Stacy X versus Empath!
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This was the kind of place Stacy X had visited many times; crazy lights, a party atmosphere, lots of bodies, and – she was sure – quite a lot of illegal stuff going down. She had no trouble admitting that she was much more at home here than she ever had been among the X-Men.
Stacy’s mutation had given her the touch of the exotic, the snakeskin that her sex appeal and pheromones complemented so well. Under the lights of the dance-floor, she knew she looked hot. First, though, she felt like getting a drink; she moved around the floor, enjoying the attention she was getting from a few wandering eyes, and made her way to the bartender.
That was when things began to seem… a little off. The guy’s clothing just didn’t match the décor of the place –white jacket, bow-tie, and a grin like a shark. Stacy swore under her breath. What kind of dump had her beep brought her to this time?
“Stacy,” the man cried out over the beat of the music, and that confirmed it.
“I don’t think I’ll be staying, thanks,” she said coolly, turning to leave.
That was when she saw that the doors were now guarded by bouncers – five large guys, a couple as big as the Blob, and all wearing gas-masks to protect themselves from her pheromones. That was the touch that creeped her out, not least because none of the other patrons noticed a thing. She flexed nervously, then turned back round. “On second thoughts…”
“Name’s Arcade,” the guy introduced himself cheerfully. “The gentleman to your right…”
Stacy looked carefully, and saw the telltale signs of some kind of militaristic training. Male, a touch of arrogance, young and not bad on the eye.
“Empath,” he introduced himself.
Empath? A name that suggested manipulation. Suddenly Stacy felt like the one being manipulated, like she’d been brought here and faced with someone with exactly the right powerset to take her on.
“What can I do you for?” She asked him with a flirtatious smile, one that he returned.
“You’re in a contest,” Arcade continued, pouring a couple of drinks. “You both have powers that are kinda fun and funky, and I feel like mixing it up.”
It was odd that he wasn’t wearing a mask, Stacy realised. He was knowledgeable enough about her powers to get his guards protected, but he wasn’t protecting himself. Confidence like that could be a weakness to exploit. “What is it, fight to the pheromone?”
“To the death, apparently,” Empath told her calmly. “This whole place is rigged to blow, us with it, unless one of us takes the other down.”
Stacy cast a wary eye over the place, and knew that – for all her affectations – she couldn’t let this many people get killed. If this guy had empathic powers too, though, maybe they could manipulate the ‘fight’ and… encourage… the crowd to exit..?
“Any funny business, and it blows,” Arcade commented, interrupting her thoughts – and apparently reading her mind. “I’m just a robot, by the way, so don’t try using your pheromones on me.”
It looked like there was only going to be one way out of this, Stacy realised. Through the Empath.