The Red Circle -
A convoy of three sleek grey armored cars stopped in front of the Red Circle's first line of defense: the guard tower occupied by 'valets' with a boom barrier that now glowed with energy, ready to release a repelling shockwave anytime a car tried to ram into it.
In the guard tower, red coated valets looked down with laser sighted assault rifles. Sentry turrets at the top of the tower joined in on this vigil, aiming their barrels at a convoy of three grey, sleekly armored cars.
The cars stopped in front of the tower, and from the third car, the passenger door slid open as a white and red suited man with golden shades stepped out while adjusting his collar and gel-spiked hair.
A guard accompanied the man, and it was obvious that this guard was no joke. He was armored from head to toe in high end combat armor.
A miniaturized Etherite reactor created a glowing red circle at his chest, and from there, lines of bright red energy spread throughout like circuitry, powering various add-ons like wrist mounted guns, forearm projected plasmoid blades, personal shielding, and kinetic energy absorption fiber matrices.
In the guard's hands was a black assault rifle emblazoned with a blue logo consisting of a three headed dragon: the symbol of Imugi War Arts, the highest end weapons developer in the entire world.
This gun in particular was called the Hydra for it had multiple modes it could enter with experimental nanotechnology molding.
A smart link cable ran from the rifle's butt and attached to the back of the guard's helmet, linking the firearm to a variety of scanning functions and Imugi's famous Sure Kill auto aiming system that drew from an advanced localized artificial intelligence that ensured accuracy that exceeded human comprehension.
"Get Casimir down here!" said the man wearing shades to the valets in the guard tower. He eyed down the barrels of their guns with cool annoyance.
From an intercom system in the boom barrier, Casimir's voice projected outwards.
"I am right here, Mr. Peperelli. How can I be of assistance today?" said Casimir coyly.
"You know damn well what you did. There are rules in our line of work, Casimir, rules that I thought you of all people knew. Like not attacking a Connector, let alone abducting villains from across ten different organizations.
Release everyone you've taken hostage or suffer a sh*tstorm of consequence that will level this little club of yours down to smoking ashes," said Joe Peperelli, the manager of the Trident's small base in Haven.
"Ah, so you knew. Were you doing a little spying in my own club?" said Casimir.
"The Trident doesn't fuck around with new villain recruits. They're all micro-chipped for vitals and location. And now, they're all gone, warped to god knows where, and that includes Velus, our Connector, and the Butcher, one of our more important assets.
Not to mention the Blackwater A class. Do you know how many golden eggs you've taken with you? How many of those students that already had contracts to work with us or the rest of the Dark Six once they graduated?"
"I am fully aware, Mr. Peperelli. I brokered most of those deals, did I not?"
"Then what the fuck is this!?" Joe shrugged indignantly. "Ten years. Ten. Fucking. Years that you spent working with everyone, and this is what you pull? For what? For credits? Bruce Vane pay you more than what we were already funneling into you?"
"Let's call this a grand retirement party for my exit from the criminal underground."
"Oh, retirement, is it?" Joe laughed. "You think you're retiring, are you? You think you'll leave this place in more than one piece? You truly must have lost your mind. Alright, I have your answer.
You're going down, Casimir. If not today, then tomorrow, or the day after - you won't have a single day's worth of peace, I can guarantee you this. And that secretary of yours, I hope you enjoy seeing her in pieces-,"
"Please, Mr. Peperelli, you and I are both far too experienced in this line of work to know that you do not have to utter these threats. They are already implied," said Casimir. "Yet from what I can see, your base in Haven is small, as are the bases of the other Dark Six, if indeed they even have one.
All of you relied on my Red Circle to host you, and now, because you have such little presence here, you have very few forces. How are you proposing you break down our defenses with three cars worth of men?"
"Like I said, it doesn't have to be today. We can wait for reinforcements to come in. Where are yours? Who do you have? Who will back you now?" said Joe.
"You may be surprised by the answer to that question, Mr. Peperelli," said Casimir.
Joe scoffed. "Yeah, let's see. Enjoy your night, Casimir. Let's see if you get to live through it. Shame, too, because I really liked the drinks in this place."
Joe walked away, and immediately, when his back turned, the valets at the guard tower opened fire with their assault rifles.
Joe's guard raised a right hand and generated a field of rippling magnetic distortions that suspended the bullets in the air.
"Alright, Elites, let's get to work." Joe clapped his hands, and immediately, the three armored cars opened their doors. Several combat armored men streamed out with synchronized efficiency, forming an ever-moving wave of crimson faced specters of death.
Within the Trident, combat personnel that did not have the best combat Alter powers became Footsoldiers that used their powers for utility while relying on armor, technology, and countless hours of training to refine their deadliness.
Among Footsoldiers, the highest class of them were the Elites. Squadrons of deadly veterans who had proven themselves across countless firefights and operations of high intensity. Many were veterans of the Corporate Wars of 2080 and 2090 when mega corporations and their hired or in house armies clashed.
Before the valets in the guard tower could adjust their aim, a trio of Elite soldiers gunned them down with perfect headshots. Another Elite held his secondary arm out like his forearm was a shield, and from it, a red forcefield riot shield emerged, blocking sentry turret shots.
Then, an Elite behind the shield generator transformed his assault rifle. Parts of the gun shimmered before breaking down into a cloud of nano-particles that then reformed into the bulkier barrel of a grenade launcher. He immediately reached into his utility belt, withdrew a trio of miniaturized grenade shells, loaded the gun, and fired.
The grenades, or rather more like explosive rounds, blew apart the sentry guns, reducing them to smoking, fiery scrap.
"Boys, the Red Circle is no joke, and though you might be over qualified to deal with their sh*tty in house villains and mercenaries, their actual staff is a serious threat. You'll need my help." Joe took down his shades, revealing grey eyes marked with cross shaped black pupils. "Stim up!"
As Joe's voice projected outwards, the twenty Elites shuddered violently as Joe's power, Stim Sound, affected their brains and bodies, causing them to massively overload in adrenaline and other fight or flight bodily processes.
They processed time slower with massively heightened reactions from their brains overclocking. They no longer felt pain. They became monstrously aggressive, and yet still in control of their training. Their strength and speed improved.
And on top of this, all the Elites pressed a button on the necks of their helmets. This caused their suits to introduce into their bodies a bonus stim cocktail of incredibly potent performance enhancing chemicals, swelling up their muscles.
Most of these Elites were technos with unenhanced physical bodies. However, they used their ability to interface with their combat technology, making up for this deficit, and with Joe's power, their stim cocktail, and high end cybernetic enhancements such as dermal plating, duraplastic laced bones, organ add-ons and organ failure safeties, they became a terrifying fighting force.
Joe watched as his Elites made their way deeper and deeper towards the Red Circle. The valet tower was only the outer edge of the Red Circle's territory. The night club itself was still several blocks further in.
Yet, all the resistance he faced right now was pitiful.
There were a few mercenaries hiding behind cars, some E and D ranker villains, and air support from drones that fired down explosive charges or rained down gunfire.
The Elites carved a path of carnage through all of them. They released their own reconnaissance drones that mapped out any threat ahead of them, linking to their top of the line environmental awareness and threat detection scanning in their helmets.
Any combat drones they saw, they shot down with extreme accuracy, even though most of these drones zipped around on their rotor blades with the annoying agility of flies. Any mercenaries that threw grenades had their explosives shot down in literal mid air or even in the very instant their hands blinked out of whatever cover they hid behind.
The moment a mercenary popped out his head to try and fire back, he was head shotted by an Elite whose infinitely faster reactions and better technology gave them every single edge possible.
The occasional Augmenter or mutant class villain would come charging by with armored skin or regenerative powers.
Hardened skin was dealt with through explosive ammunition or armor piercing rounds through soft spots such as the eye utilizing the Hydra's sniper form.
Mutants with regeneration were disabled with rounds to the brain before blown apart with planted plastic charges in their center, destroying too much of their bodies for them to regenerate.
There was no mercy.
Only clean, efficient execution.