[identity profile] aflyinggrayson.livejournal.com
Twenty minutes have passed since Dick told Barbara he would call her about the return of Batman. That is to say, the return of the guy that really belonged in the suit of the Dark Knight and not the young poser who'd rather be snapping off smart-ass comments and rocking the Nightwing costume.

A towel is draped loosely around his hips, hair dripping and ice pack against his left knee as he settles onto the bed in his old room at Wayne Manor and uses his thumb to dial Barbara's home number. He hurts all over...but he's smiling.
[identity profile] gotham-gargoyle.livejournal.com
After picking up one of the stashed motorcycles he'd hidden around the city, the Batman has made his way back home - through the cave entrance, of course. With any luck, he's preceded Dick by more than a minute. One of the downsides of the Batmobile is its comparative lack of maneuverability.

The security system recognizes his access codes, and he pulls onto the elevated parking bay, setting the cycle's kickstand and sliding off.

"Computer. Display recent casefile summaries."

Yes, he was here to see Alfred and Tim, but a quick peek at recent events would only take a few seconds.
[identity profile] fast-thrower.livejournal.com
Owen looked at his cellphone thoughtfully. What did he have to lose? The worst she could say is that she's busy, right?

So he dials up that sexy redhead from the library.
[identity profile] themightyoracle.livejournal.com
 It feels like months since she first started trying to reach her father, but Babs knows it's only been hours.

Nevertheless, she's worried, because she knows her dad. She's been off-grid nearly five days now, and since she first moved in with him when she was thirteen, Barbara has never gone more than a night without speaking to him. 

Well - there was one glaring exception. 

Which only reinforced her sense that something wasn't right, but with all the recent chaos in Gotham, it was possible there was still some sort of reasonable explanation for why Commissioner Gordon wasn't answering his cell phone for his only daughter, nor returning the messages she'd left for him at work or home. 

Babs wanted to go to the station. It wasn't far. Neither was her father's house far removed from her Clock Tower. But there was still a lot of work to be done, and while her leg injury wasn't any further hinderance for her, and she could still get around by herself, Babs had a feeling that certain people might get snippy if she took off on her own again so soon.

There were one or two things she could try before venturing out into Gotham. Calling Dick's cell, she left a voicemail,

<i>"Hey, Dick. Not to be an alarmist, but I haven't been able to get ahold of my father and I was wondering if maybe you had an idea where he might be. Also, if you've got a job for me to help get things running more smoothly, I'm ready to go. Call me when you can."</i>
[identity profile] tim-drake-robin.livejournal.com
Not many would describe the Batcave as being 'homey', 'cozy' or any other adjective that denoted 'warm and welcoming'. Tim wasn't just anyone however.

There were few sights in this world that said 'home' like the under-lit gloom of the cave under Wayne Manor.


Habit, hard won and indelible to his nature now, had him logging in a report to the Bat Computer as soon as he arrived. Ten minutes into the report, Tim laughed at himself wearily.

"Dear Bat-diary. Life in Hell sucks. So glad Lady Shiva and Richar dDragon makes house calls to The Pit..."

Removing the mask, Tim rubbed his bloodshot eyes.

"Careful Drake. Talking to yourself might get you a trip to Arkham.."
[identity profile] themightyoracle.livejournal.com
 She was supposed to have ridden out the war with Darkseid in the Batcave. She had all the equipment she could ever need there to send information to the rest of the heroes in Bludhaven, or wherever else they chose as their base of operations. From her Clocktower, she'd taken very little - a few things she wouldn't find in Bruce's house, at least, to her satisfaction - and had gotten from the garage the last thing Bruce had ever made for her, but she had yet to use. It was a Batcycle - purple, of course - that started as a four-wheeler until the rear section detached (returning to base) and the driver lay forward in an enclosed pod. It was still suspended on four wheels, but the placement of them had the two front and two rear wheels side by side in the style of the average motorcycle.

Later, she would be glad she'd chosen not to ride in the prone position that evening. Heading north on the Ricochet for the Robert Kane Memorial Bridge, Barbara had needed to be careful. There were practically no other vehicles on the road, and she didn't want to look too closely at the ones that were. People were still leaving Gotham on foot, a few by vehicle, but the road had mostly been clogged with abandoned cars, trucks, vans, and bikes. Only half of her had wanted to know where their owners were.

Suddenly, it had become apparent that one truck, at least, was on the run out of town. It had only been a four wheeler, but whatever the freight in its hold, the speed of the cargo van around the corner sent it into a spin. Babs heard the squeal of breaks, smelled the burning rubber, and reached for the lever to open up the throttle... but it was too late.

The front right corner of the truck sent her bike spinning left off the road and into the mud beside the river. Before she could even think to move from her spot, the truck came flying after her. In a burst of white pain, the last thing Babs remembered was the image of the van in the air above her.

When she woke, it had been become evening. Nothing hurt, but that was one of the mixed blessings of being paralyzed. She could have been bleeding to death and she wouldn't have known it without looking. Carefully, Babs opened her eyes, and had tried to sit up. She was only partially successful. She could sit, and she could even move a little, but she clearly wasn't going anywhere, unless she was willing to amputate just below the knee.

Looking around, she'd taken stock of her surroundings. The river was thankfully within reach. As long as it didn't raise high enough to drown her, she should be alright with water. She had a little food in her pack, a box of tea, and there were some edible grasses on the bank. It wasn't at all good enough, but it was a start, and surely someone would find her soon, right?

Blinking, Babs had noticed that the padlock on the back of the truck was cracked. Looking around, she'd found a large rock and used it to bash the lock in until it fell to pieces. Pulling them away and sliding the hasp aside, she had pushed the rolling door left - what had once been up - and looked inside.

Everything had been thrown about, but there were a few things that made her immediately feel a bit better. A couple folded blue tarps were within reach, as were a nice big stack of shipping blankets. Looking further back at some of the boxes that had fallen, she recognized the label immediately.

"Oh, God..."

The blue script of the Entenmann's logo stared back at her. Okay, so she probably wouldn't starve, but she'd definitely make herself ill if she ate this stuff.

Remembering the electonics she'd packed, Babs took off her pack and pulled out the pieces. Frowning at them, she pieced them together carefully, repurposing a shoelace, a belt buckle, a stick, and a piece of duct tape stuck to the door. When she was done, Babs had a straight-key radio. 

Over the following days, Babs set up a system, never using the radio over the same hours every day, but staggering them so that no one could track the radio signal when her radio was on. The message she sent was always the same. It started and ended with the word 'Bat', and the information between was in a code known only to members of that family.

She tried to keep her muscles strong, but was starting to feel tired. She tried to eat something everyday, but was starting to lose weight. She'd tried to keep warm, but the ground beneath her leached all heat from her body. Babs could only hope someone would hear her soon.

Otherwise, there was a very sharp rock just beyond her reach that could probably serve as an axe...


 
[identity profile] keystonesfinest.livejournal.com
 Dr. Alchemy sits atop the Gothic Revival Tribune Tower in Chicago, legs dangling over the edge of the tall ledge he's perched on, the Philosopher's Stone in one hand, and a smaller book than usual in the other. He's having to use a metal clip to keep the pages open where he wants them, given the high winds this far up, so he's less than happy. Any damage to a book puts Alchemy in a bad mood.

He reads from his book; Atlas Shrugged. "Run for your life from any man who tells you that money is evil. That sentence is the leper’s bell of an approaching looter. So long as men live together on earth and need means to deal with one another–their only substitute, if they abandon money, is the muzzle of a gun. What an interesting philosophy…" Alchemy doesn't even look up as he activates the philosopher's stone, and the walls of the Chicago Mutual Bank turn into oxygen, exposing the vaults to the public.

"When you have made evil the means of survival, do not expect men to remain good. Do not expect them to stay moral and lose their lives for the purpose of becoming the fodder of the immoral. Do not expect them to produce, when production is punished and looting rewarded. Do not ask, ‘Who is destroying the world? You are."  He sniffs. "I merely change the world. I destroy nothing. This Rand woman has some gaps in her knowledge." Again without looking, he clutches the stone and the roads beneath him begin to change into mercury.

-

Meanwhile, other villains, rogues and criminals run rampant throughout Chicago, all intent on causing the largest distraction possible for the Justice League.

Bird Calls

May. 20th, 2010 01:33 am
[identity profile] canary-noir.livejournal.com

She had just been getting in the shower when her cell phone buzzed with a text.  Dinah groaned and the bottom of her stomach fell out.  She had a date tonight.  Well, not some kind of important this-is-definitely-going-to-go-somewhere kind of a date, but more the so-here-we-are-in-the-grocery-store-and-I-see-you-like-Ramen-Noodles-as-much-as-I-do-maybe-we-could-eat-some-together-some-time kind.  With someone not involved in the superhero community and therefore- by most standards- a total nobody.  Okay sure, this wasn't going to end up in a happily ever after, but hey, when you have a Ferrarri, every now and then you just had to take it out for a spin.  And it was about damn time someone asked Dinah out on a spin.  And then... This.  That little buzzing that managed to ruin her evening before it even started. 

She grabbed a towel and wrapped up, stalling answering the text while she chanted in her head, Please don't let it be Babs, please don't let it be Babs, Pleaseohpleaseohplease don't let it be Babs.  Then she picked it up. 

Dinah rolled her eyes skyward at the universe's hilarious joke.  Well.  It wasn't Babs.  Dammit.

And finally she returned the text:

[To: Ollie Queen
You owe me.  Where do I meet you?]
[identity profile] aflyinggrayson.livejournal.com
Dick is busy running an analysis of the blood he took from one of the men he stopped from stealing weapons. Black Mask's men, he thought. He expected.

The evidence does not bear out his suspicions.

No matter how many times he runs the sample through the computer banks in the Batcave, the crazed thug from the back of that munitions-laden truck does not appear addicted to the toxins that Black Mask had used to help keep his employees in line. Traces exist, but those traces suggest that the addiction was in the man's past. And while the toxins are nasty stuff, they usually don't leave lunacy - or fanaticism - in their wake.

Dick isn't sure what to think. Which means giving Oracle a buzz.
[identity profile] aflyinggrayson.livejournal.com
Days have passed. Weeks have passed. God, he doesn't want to do this, not a damned bit. He likes being Nightwing, he likes taking care of Bludhaven, he likes being someone other than Bruce Wayne, Jr.

But he has responsibilities.

Dick has his own Batsuit because his build is trimmer than Bruce's and he is a little shorter, nothing that has ever been noted in the past by Gotham's villains. Wearing that suit, he faces the case in which Bruce's suit now resides with Jason's former Robin outfit and Stephanie's former Batgirl outfit, a quiet memorial to those who died...only Jason and Stephanie didn't stay dead. Which gives Dick a modicum of hope.

"Don't worry, old man," he whispers to the empty Batsuit in the case. "I'll take care of Gotham for you."

Drawing the cowl over his head, Dick strides to the dark, sleek shape of the Batmobile and cracks a sardonic smile. At least he gets to drive the car. If anything will bring a pissed-off Bruce Wayne back from wherever the hell Luthor sent him, it's the knowledge that Dick Grayson is joyriding in Bruce's favorite vehicle. Or so he hopes.

The engine roars to life, and with a blast from the rear-mounted booster the Batmobile screams its way out of the Batcave toward Gotham. Time to kick some ass. And THAT at least will feel damned good.
[identity profile] fast-thrower.livejournal.com
It wasn't like Owen hadn't enjoyed being part of the Titans, they were a great bunch, but he just couldn't stay cooped up in some HQ all the time. He needed to get back on the road now and then. Even if he wasn't jetting off for some wild and crazy vacation, just to be on the move felt good.

That's what brought him to Gotham. Granted, the place didn't have the best memories for him, with his dad dieing there 'on the job', but it was a big city. Plus, it had a great library.

You wouldn't think it from knowing him, but Owen loved libraries. The smell of old paper, the peace and quiet (but not TOO quiet), and plenty of open table space and old technical manuals to check out. The perfect place to work on blueprints for new gear. Anyone looking over his shoulder tended to just assume he was some kind of Trek or Wars nerd drawing spaceship designs. So yeah, nice places.

At the moment he was about fifty feet up a ladder, perusing some especially dusty materials, fighting off a sneeze.

((open to anyone who might be there and recognize him, or criminals who want to crash the place))
[identity profile] themightyoracle.livejournal.com
 It had been too long since their last one; a lot had happened between then and now to prevent it, but it was time, at last, for the Birds of Prey to assemble once more.

Many times, it was just Babs and Dinah in attendance for what they'd taken to calling their 'BoP parties'. Occasionally, some of the other girls, and/or honorary male members joined in, but all that really was needed were two or more Birds, a bottle of tequila for margaritas, ice cream, and the optional chick flick. So far this evening, the two founding members of the Birds of Prey were sharing the bottle alone, but the night was still young.

So far, it wasn't a very festive atmosphere. Barbara wasn't much of a drinker, but she had a shot glass of tequila in her hand, having skipped the margarita part entirely. She wasn't quite as thin has she had been recently, but her cheeks were still a bit more hollow than they should be. The apparent death of her mentor was taking less of a toll than her stubborn refusal to accept it as fact.

Babs hadn't spoken about it to anyone but Dick, and a few messages exchanged with Arthur. She wasn't sure what Dinah would have to say about it, but she <i>was</i> certain Di would make her talk.

Eventually. 
[identity profile] 7-seas-czar.livejournal.com
Aquaman is not one to share his pain nor is he one to bother others about what they are feeling. This, though, seems different. The whole situation is something a little different with the recent death.

He has no idea if the entity known as Oracle is anything more than elaborate computer program, though it seemed as though there were emotional responses there. He also knew that Oracle worked more closely with Batman than with most of the rest of the Justice League. So, with that in mind, he left a message for Oracle. Usually the response on these messages is quick but he isn't expecting the typical response time.

"Oracle, I was wondering how ... you were in the aftermath of everything. I do not know if you were in need of someone to speak to about everything that has happened. I am not the best at giving comfort but I thought I would make the offer of companionship. It is not always true that shared sorrow lightens the burden but sometimes the sharing can be helpful."

Well, that message was only a little awkward. And it will only be a little ridiculous if Oracle does turn out to be a fancy computer program and not a person.
[identity profile] aflyinggrayson.livejournal.com
Gotham could not yet know its guardian has disappeared. The Bat family has made certain of it. All of the usual mechanisms that go into place when Bruce is injured are in place now: holograms of the Batman haunt people, Nightwing, Robin, Batgirl, Huntress...they are on the streets, doing what they do best. Just not as good as their mentor.

Coffee, energy drinks, sodas, sugary foods...anything Dick can consume to keep himself going he's consumed. Anything legal, that is. He's learned well how to stay awake, stay focused, stay lethal. He learned from the best.

With others on patrol presently, Dick ditches his costume and finds his way back to the Watchtower. In his backpack is the Nightwing gear and what remains of Batman's cape and cowl. He gives his chin, unshaven for days, a rueful rub and then knocks on Barbara's door.
[identity profile] femme-du-chat.livejournal.com
Everything has been a little off today, something strange with the world. The whole thing just seems a bit strange and, well, there is one person who knows everything about everything. Or at least she usually does.

Selina ends up on Oracle's doorstep, though she's nominally visiting the other woman, Barbara Gordon. The two of them have had ups and downs - better and worse times. Right now, though, they're in a good patch of relationship.

It'll be interesting to see if that lasts through this encounter.
[identity profile] scream-and-cry.livejournal.com
Dr. Crane picks his umbrella up from the hatstand. It's raining heavily outside. With a frown, he fastens his coat at the neck, and making sure he has enough cash in his wallet, heads for the door. "I'm going to presume you're not wanting anything for lunch, Edward."

His colleague has his nose in a client file, reading up on something relating to one of their cases. It must be something intriguing, as he's not been yammering on like he normally feels inclined to. "If I get the time, I'll pick you up some sandwich or other. Make sure Alice doesn't leave her cupboard until the filing is done."

Heading down the stairs towards the street, Jonathan breathes in and gets a faint whiff of the smell of rain hitting the asphalt. that makes him smile, and he nearly walks into the men at the foot of the stairs. Arsenal and Nightwing. In costume.

"Drat."

His first instinct is to spray them with fear toxin and run back up the stairs, but instead he remembers who he is now, and merely stumbles back a few steps. "Can I help you gentlemen? We do have a policy of no masks in the office..." Seeing their somewhat humourless faces, he shrugs. "But no doubt we'll be forced to make an exception."
[identity profile] http://users.livejournal.com/_darkknight_/
Every now and again, against his better wishes, Bruce Wayne does indeed spend time at the office, especially when his company's board of directors needs his attention.

This time he didn't even fall asleep, either.

Muttering to himself about fixations on minutiae that any sane multinational corporation would blow off, Bruce sends his assistant Margaret home for the day, closes the door to his office, and loosens his tie. Emails need answering, proposals need reviewing, letters need signing...at least the bits and parts that he can't foist off on people like Margaret, Alfred and Lucius Fox. Besides, despite his grumblings, sitting at his grandfather's desk in the CEO's office at sunset, eating supper while reviewing business deals is often the closest he comes to a normal existence. Sometimes it's actually sort of nice.

The cheese steak from Paulo's down the street doesn't hurt either.
[identity profile] http://users.livejournal.com/_black_canary_/
"Downward block, gedanbarai, hagemai!" calls out the Black Canary, and thirty students step out in stance, swinging their arms down to block the imaginary kick. Unfortunately, some land on their left foot and some on their right. A few of the newer students aren't entirely sure which arm they're supposed to be using to block, and the Canary waves a reproving hand. "No, no. Watch--" Patiently she runs through the short sequence, moving far more slowly than she would in a real fight. "Left foot out, left arm blocks. Left foot out, left arm blocks."

After a few more repetitions, even the most nervous student has mastered the sequence, and the class comes to an end. Bows are exchanged, and Dinah wanders over to pay her respects to the sensei. "Thanks for letting me sit in," she tells the old woman.

"Ach, my pleasure," beams the sensei, who looks more like a Swiss dairymaid than a three-time national champion, though the photos from her victories line the wall as testimony. "It's good for them to have instruction from someone else from time to time. It teaches them the power of unpredictability, yes?"

"Hai," agrees the Canary with a grin. "I'll see about showing up next week if I can. Maybe." Her grin firmly in place, she makes her farewells and leaves the dojo, humming off-key to herself as she walks to her motorcycle.
[identity profile] jl-scoundrels.livejournal.com
Once more, the abusive lover grips his mistress by the throat.

It was the first. The best. And still, the strongest. Others have followed in his wake, but they have been inferior, pale shades gathering their own strength and wise enough only to avoid his territories. They have done well - he does not tolerate competition, a vestige from a former life, long since submerged in endless thirst.

Prey is not difficult to find. In the beginning, it was more difficult. It had to hide. To slink in the shadows, waiting for prey to wander near. It has grown easier since then. So much easier.

He doesn't even have time to scream. A young hood, his piece falling from nerveless fingers, eyes growing rapidly glassy. It has grown strong enough to exsanguinate its victims in just a few seconds. The bloodless body is dropped like a broken toy or a piece of garbage and the monster is scurrying back up the brick wall, seeking higher ground, the better to ambush victims from that one dimension they never see coming - from above.

Of course, the victims aren't the only ones capable of not looking up.
[identity profile] fleet-feet.livejournal.com
The strange alien orb that sucked them all in and left them with even more questions and no answers... it threw Wally for a bit of a loop, and it's not something he's sure he's ready to talk to his girlfriend(s) about.

But there's one guy he hasn't had a good bullshit session with in quite some time that might be able to help out. Or at least play a good sounding board.

So that's why he's in Bludhaven, of all the stank places in the world he could be. Paying a social visit to the Graysons in their clock tower home.

Knocking gently at their chamber door.

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