Who:Eleanor Monarch-Sparke Archer What: Training for some vigilante action. When: More current than recently. BOOM. Where: A formerly abandoned warehouse at the edge of town. Warnings: None.
The abandoned warehouse was on the far edge of town. It looked like something out of a ghost town, the red bricks gone brown and threatening to crumble. The brown-grey steel of exposed pipe caught the rays of the afternoon sun, glinting in the small patches that had not yet gone completely dull with age. The entire building looked as though it might collapse inwards without notice, making the CONDEMNED – STRUCTURE NOT SOUND signs unnecessary to keep curious teenagers out.
Next to her, Sven said nothing, raising his brows half an inch. Unfortunately for him, she had been with him long enough to be able to read the small movements on his somber face and know exactly what he was thinking. “What? I asked them to leave the signs up after they fixed it.” More silence, but this time there was a slight twitch of his lip. “It’s not going to seem strange. You think this is the strangest purchase MI has made? Not even close. I’m nowhere near creative enough to come up with half the things Orin has.”
“Alright, I’m going in. You can go back to the penthouse. You don’t need to stay out here in the car.” She felt as though it was only polite to make the offer, even though she was well aware that he would be waiting out here until she was through with whatever madness she planned on getting up to inside. Anton had done well, picking Sven to guard her. The quiet man had truly been wasted as a butler. He had been keeping an eye on her for months now, but she still wasn’t sure if the dedication was because of the outrageous pay, complete dedication, or complete devotion. She supposed that was the way it was supposed to be.
She pulled the bag that weighed almost as much as she did out of the trunk and hitched it over her back, waving away the man’s offer of help. There was something right about breaking into a sweat before she had even gotten set up, and by the time her equipment was in place, she was loose, limber and ready to train. She started off with some cardio and plyometrics, jumping and tumbling across the objects scattered around the floor, putting to use muscle groups that had not seen much action since her days as a cheerleader. Then came the high bars – scrambling and hanging from pipes that jutted out at odd angles and heights, making her limbs scream in beautiful agony as she tested her limits. By the time she approached the targets, her arms were quivering, her legs more jelly-like than solid.
She picked up the largest bow in her collection, examining and testing it before loading it with an arrow from her quiver. It was entirely impractical to take out with her to the streets, but it was what she had grown up learning to use, what she had once been destined to compete in the Olympics with. Muscle fatigue or not, settling into her firing stance was like coming home, and in the short second between pulling the bowstring back and releasing the arrow, all the aches and pains of the world ceased to exist. It was as close to a religious experience she could ever have or imagine; the narrowing of the world to a pinprick of red across the warehouse a truly transcendental moment. She exhaled and took her shot, and as always, her aim was true.
She spent the rest of the afternoon cycling through her equipment, using and modifying every bow in her repertoire, and alternating between stationary and mobile targets. She was stuck using standard arrows at the moment, the stuff of your average archery store, but she had some feelers out as to where she might be able to acquire covert upgrades. But she didn’t need to wait on fancy arrows to get back out there. She was ready for the rooftops now, to do more good than just help the cops with a standard thug. Whether the people of Las Vegas were ready for it or not, they would be seeing a lot more of Archer in the weeks to come.