Karma Killer

Summary:
August 19, 2014: The titans examine the ruins of the tower. Kimiko presents the potential for revenge.

Titan Tower Ruins

The ruins of the tower.


Characters

NPCs
Kimiko's bodyguards


Mood Music:
Karma Killer- Robie Williams
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DyMCS46G4W0


It is the next evening at Titan's Tower and yet the tower is still here. Only a slight skeletal equivalent of it, metal girders still reaching up towards the heavens with a forlorn attempt at reclaiming their height and glory. Most of it is still in the collapsed rubble around where it fell. The stench of burning embers, broken dust, and the ocean is heavy and lends an ominous weight to the air of the shattered building.

Yet aspects of it are still intact. Curiously enough one of the small weather flags is standing askew in the wreckage. The driveway leading up to where the front door would be is still intact save for a few pieces of stone and rubble that rolled down the hill. Even one of the double doors is visible, though it's a good thirty feet from where it should be.

Though things were hectic the other night and during the day, the news crews have gone for the most part. There's that ubiquitous yellow caution tape scattered around the more dangerous areas. The electrical and gas power has been turned off, so there are no lights even in the shed or garage area that's split off from the tower itself. In fact the place is empty…

Save for one lone figure who is settled at the end of the driveway. Seated in a folding beach chair that must have been brought up from the coast at some point, Alexander Aaron is still in those grey sweat shorts and ragged burnt white t-shirt he was wearing at the time of the attack. A katana is settled across his lap as he remains there looking distant as he considers the ocean, the rubble of the tower behind him. The waves drift over the beach some forty feet in front of him. But for now, he's letting his thoughts drift.

-

Rachel was somewhere else when the tower was attacked. Now she's not there anymore. As a matter of fact, she's walking up the long driveway towards the rubble with her hands in the pockets of her hoodie, hood as usual is in place over her head, even if she is tilting back a little to look at the destruction zone that was only a day ago the Titans headquarters. Her mouth twitches to one side, violet eyes regarding the tumbled rocks that have rolled down the hill, but ultimately she ducks beneath the caution tape and walks towards the tall concrete pile.

-

The young red-headed man who walks up to the driveway looks like he hasn't slept much. His hair is unkempt and his jeans and black tank top have seen better days. His hands are concealed in the pockets of his denim jacket as he surveys the destruction with a look on his face that is pure bile.

Keith O'Neil has no home.

"… if I ever come face to face with her again…" he says, starting a slow, labored walk towards the end of the driveway, "… I'm going to… I swear I'm… "

His voice cuts off, sounding rather strangled. He doesn't even look at Alexander.

-

A glance is given to the side as Alexander looks on Keith. He seems a bit distracted still, distant, still sitting there in that white and green beach chair that clearly has seen better days. It makes a faint aluminum skitter of a skreeky sound when he turns on it slightly to look in the other man's direction. One blonde eyebrow cocks curiously, then he gives a small nod.

"If you need a place to stay, there is an apartment near ESU I use. You'd be welcome to avail yourself of it."

He lifts a hand, gesturing to the side absently as he turns his attention back upon the water.

-

As she approaches ground zero, threads of purple energy writhe out of her coat and wrap themselves around chunks of fallen stone. Without really stopping in her absent search, they're pushed aside out of her way. Likely the sound of disrupted stone will carry, what with the size and all.

Rachel steps over a broken length of wall with bits of glass still standing jagged out from the base that use to be the main lobby. If this is still a crime scene, she doesn't seem to care, or perhaps she just doesn't have a very high opinion of the quality of police work.

Besides, she's looking for something. Or is hoping to turn this into modern art.

-

"I don't take charity," the young man says, clamming up and setting his jaw hard. He's surprised Raven hasn't noticed him yet, especially given their interaction when he met her in this form… but she seems to be looking for something. Obviously something more important than squabbling.

-

Gaining his feet smoothly, the chair complains with a small creak, Alexander levels those glowing red eyes on the young man. His expression narrows to a knife's edge, jaw clenching for a moment and then he says simply, "Suit yourself, Black Tiger." And with that said he moves past the other young man, turning his attention upon Raven and her search.

The young blond man's bare feet make barely a sound as he closes the distance with her. One long-fingered hand lifts to push a hunk of steel out of the way, creating a groan of metal upon metal that might announce his approach. Once he's some ten feet off he lifts his voice.

"The scythe?" he asks of her, lending his attention to the cause if not his effort.

-

While the metal on metal certainly is loud enough to cause a reaction, it does not get one from Rachel. She hardly even looks up, lifting another large chunk of rock facing to toss it haphazardly upon another loose rubble pile.

"Yes," she says flatly, maybe distractedly, while creating a small tunnel straight down in through the top of the pile as if she knows exactly where she's going.

-

An almost feline growl escapes Keith's throat. Almost. His throat is the wrong shape for it, but it was a good try. Not caring much about anything at this point, he ambles his way to the rubble and the other two to watch what's going on.

-

The ancient blade is slung over Alexander's shoulder as he folds his arms over his chest. His attention levels upon her as she remains working with those black tendrils to try and create that tunnel in her search. For a time he lets silence reign, the only sounds coming between them is that of the scrape and crackle of debris shifting from her efforts.

Then he lifts his voice and asks her levelly, "Some time ago, you considered yourself indebted to me. If you still feel as such then I am ready to ask the question."

-

It's certainly a considerable time before Rachel says anything to perpetuate destroying the blissfully comfortable silence. Even once Alexander has indirectly asked her a question, she continues to throw rubble from her path until she's created a small chamber from which she lifts up small bits of stone with thready, whirling, lengths of her own soul.

"I will answer," she says without even sounding distracted. Though she does look over in Keith's direction, staring at him in the same manner she had in the restaurant.

"So you knew who I was and pretended otherwise?"

-

Keith narrows his eyes.

"Excuse me for wanting a chance to have you not hate my guts. Not that it worked, so never mind," he barks. Watching Raven go through the debris makes something stir inside him. Loss, grief. It wasn't just furniture or cheap mementos. The few things he had of his mother, gone.

-

Turning his attention to the both of them, Alexander steps around to the side, taking up a seat upon one of the girders that is partially melted and curled around a mass of concrete. He leans back as he looks across the way towards the coast and the ocean that still pelts the beach with its waves. There's a moment of hesitation, then the words come from him easily enough.

"I would ask you to tell me what it means to you, that you are a daughter of Trigon."

A glance is given towards Keith, perhaps gauging if such means anything to this other young man, then back towards Raven.

-

"Hate your guts." Rachel nods once and looks down in the hole burrowed into the center of all the rubble of their head quarters.

"I was unaware that I hated you. If it makes you feel better, I am sorry that I do not treat you special by acting in a way that you find suitably acceptable."

The tendrils dig down into the hole, disrupting the pile a little only for her to send more down and support the weight with a matrix of swirling purple energy.

"I will then forgive you for attempting to manipulate me for a response?" Looking towards Keith, "Fair?"

Staring at the young man, in fact, until Alexander asks his question. Or rather, states his request.

"That isn't a question, but I will attempt to answer the spirit of the request."

She never stops digging, only stops paying attention to the shadowy double that pulls itself away from her and stands exactly where she was until walking a few steps towards Alex and Keith.

"It means that I am going to eventually fail and while you all will probably defeat him, it will not be before he uses me as a vessel for horrible atrocities that I will then have to live with. I will, of course, handle that with more control than most and I will likely be called a horrible person because it does not render me crippled with self pity."

-

Keith takes a sharp breath at Raven's answer and turns around, seemingly finding interest in a twisted hunk of metal, charred and blackened. Call him petty, but his pride was already wounded enough as it was. Among other things. He doesn't answer, but focuses on the metal.

-

Curiously enough Alexander looks over at Keith and there's a small glimmer of concern there in the shifting roiling crimson of his eyes. Or perhaps it is simple the proximity to Raven's arcane abilities. In any case he looks back towards Raven as she answers, then gives her a single solemn nod. He blinks slowly as he watches her, then his voice lifts.

"Consider your debt discharged. But I would still know what you can tell me of Trigon. I am not familiar with him beyond a passing reference an acquaintance of mine made."

Slowly Alexander shifts his weight to the side, leaning there with one hand resting upon the stones and supporting his weight as he watches her. There's something gauging in his eyes, something weighing her words and her manner.

-

Rachel does not break into sobs when Keith turns away from her, rather she looks down into the pit formed by her abilities and steps off the edge so that she can float down into the tunnel. Disappeared from view, the sound of her work is still readily heard as she shifts around the makeshift opening to more easily secure it with little threads of her shadowy tendrils. Until, several quiet moments later, she floats back out with two halves of a very horrible scythe held in either hand.

These are tossed down onto the rubble with a lot less care than one would expect from someone who went to this great a length to acquire them. "Keith. Did you lose anything in the destruction?" She asks in her same, abysmally unsympathetic, voice. "Several of the quarters were left, some what, in tact. There may be some of your things which you can salvage."

-

Keith shakes his head slowly, looking at the debris around. "I looked last night. After I got back from work. Anything that mattered is gone." He says, sounding tired. "It's all done for. I chose one of the rooms with a view. I'm sure it had a nice view of her goddamned torpedoes. Missiles. Whatever. "

-

Drawing one bare foot up on the edge of his rubblish chair, Alexander looks for a time at Raven, perhaps hoping she might answer some aspect of his question. But then she does not, the time drifting on past. A small shake of his head is given and then his attention turns to Keith. Dark eyes meet the young man's and he opens a hand towards him, as if asking for him to take the very words from him.

"I believe this may have been my fault in some manner." There's a glance towards Raven, then back towards Keith. "She asked for me by name. Though I have no idea what she wished or how I came to her attention."

-

"On the plus side, they are just things," Rachel states flatly and looks to the two halves of the scythe, then up to Keith, and over to Alexander. This bit of news is taken easily, nodding her hooded head once and returning both hands to the pockets of the coat she's wearing.

"Some how that does not surprise me."

-

"Sometimes things are all some have left. Had."

Keith paces, kicking at a side of wall that slowly crumbles.

"My mother's pictures. The stuff she left me when she died," a pause, "God I hate that bitch. .. I wish I knew who the hell she is! " and back to the seething place.

-

The Lower Bay is always busy, mostly with commercial traffic, so when the speed boat heads towards Hoffman Island's dock it's pretty noticeable. There are only a few people that can be seen, one at the wheel and three others. One is a woman and the two men with her are fairly large, burly sorts in tailored suits. The woman herself is dressed in a charcoal pantsuit with her hair up in a twist, though several long strands have worked their way free.

-

A small shrug is given towards Raven and Alexander actually smiles a bit, though it's a sardonic thing without too much vibrancy to it. He looks over towards Keith and then hmms to himself, one hand lifts to rub at the back of Alex's neck as he considers the loss and what has occurred.

"I do seem to be drawing a bit of negativity to things. Perhaps I should avoid bringing things home with me. As it were."

But then, of course, is the moment when the speed boat is seen from the south beach area of Staten Island. If he hadn't been sitting there amongst the rubble he would have missed it from where he was sitting across the way in that beach chair. He sits up straighter and makes a small, 'hnh' of sound.

"We may have a visitor."

-

"Do you remember what she looks like?" Rachel asks still looking down into the hole she's dug out of the center of the tower of tumble.

"Sentimental value aside, do you believe her memory is destroyed simply because several objects were?" The immovable object to Keith's emotional unstoppable force.

She shrugs at Alex, "You are part of a team, it seems counter productive to deal with these matters alone."

Even if it means they lose a few coffee machines and mementos. The alternative is losing a teammate, so she seems content to deal with everything else as it comes.

Like the boat speeding towards the shore.

"Several guests wearing suits. Probably government… it is relatively late for insurance agents."

-

"Memory is imperfect. Details fail over time. Some things are-"

Green eyes narrow when the visitors are announced. He bends down and grabs a twisted pipe, almost as long as he is tall.

"More assholes? What's left to blast, my underwear drawer?"

-

The speed boat comes to a stop, the men getting out and securing it to the dock. The pilot stays with the boat as the relatively diminutive woman steps up, accepting the hand of one of the burly men to make the transfer to the dock. There's a moment's pause as she looks around at the island and the devastation and then starts towards the shattered tower, picking her way about the debris.

Once she's close enough, and the wreckage gets too thick to just walk around, she comes to a stop with hands folded neatly before her. The two suited men wait at a respectful distance further back. They're mostly eyeing Keith with the pipe and looking a bit edgy but the Asian woman seems calmly composed and she looks over to Alexander.

"I cancelled our dinner plans." She tells him simply, her Japanese-accented English holding British overtones. Her gaze sweeps the area again. "It seemed you were… otherwise engaged."

-

Gaining his feet as she comes closer to the wreckage and the cautionary tape, to stand amongst the trio of the Titans, Alexander looks at Kimiko and tells her levelly, "Ms. Tatsu."

A few steps and he slides off the iron girder and boulder he'd been sitting upon, dropping to the ground and walking bare foot towards the Japanese woman. With one hand he sweeps a gesture towards Raven and Keith.

"This is Raven, and Black Tiger. My associates in the Titans endeavour."

He steps back so he takes place as the proper intermediary for when two parties first meet.

"This is Ms. Tatsu, she owns the Hotel Niwa in Metropolis and is a proponent of our activities."

-

Rachel remains up high on the pile of rubble, holding two halves of a scythe. The upper portion actually appears to be covered in open mouths, lolling tongues hang out of gaping lips.

It probably stinks.

When she's introduced she lifts the lower stave portion to touch it to the outside of her black hood, but does not say anything by way of greeting.

-

The pipe is tossed aside and Keith simply says, "Vorpal."

Because why the hell bother anymore?

"I see. " Keith is still rather angry at everything in general.

-

Turning back towards Kimiko, Alexander addresses her levelly. "There was a woman that decided to attack us." He lifts his eyes to the multiple bodyguards, then focuses fully on the woman.

"Her name was Amanda Waller, she seemed to have some form of advanced or government backing. At least mercenaries. Mercenaries equipped with self destructive devices when they failed to operate at a certain level."

Alexander steps back so that the others can hear what he's saying, in case it's important to them as well.

"If it is possible for you to find out what is possible on this individual, I know not only myself but Vorpal would be appreciative."

As he says this he looks across at his teammates, cocking an eyebrow and asking a silent question of them if they would add anything else.

-

Kimiko gives a polite bow of her head, her body bending at the waist as she murmurs a polite greeting in Japanese. When she straightens she looks over to Vorpal and his obvious foul mood. Her dark eyes glance over to Alexander with quiet concern.

"It is my pleasure to meet you both." She is quiet as Alexander speaks, and then tilts her head in a small nod. "Is this so?"

She glances back to one of her bodyguards.

"I will see what can be found." Fu'se gives a nod back to Kimiko, stepping away and moving towards the boat as he pulls out his cellphone. Then she looks back to Alexander with a light frown.

"Have you been here all day?"

-

"She destroyed his mother's memory." Rachel points one halve of the scythe at Vorpal, feeling perhaps that this will touch to other woman's emotions in assisting.

Otherwise, the dark clad, demure Raven stands quietly.

-

"I want to know who funds her and what dirty laundry they may have, " Keith says quietly. "I don't know what she is, but she needs to be stopped. "

-

A nod is given to Kimiko as he answers her. He has indeed been here since the tower fell, thinking mainly. Alexander looks over his shoulder and gives a small nod to his teammates.

"I will see what can be found out and when I return we'll see what is to be done. How strongly do you weigh her transgression against you?"

He turns around to face them, gaze flicking from one to the other.

"If one is to begin vendetta, then one must know the lengths they wish to go to."

-

Rachel remains quiet, only stating, "Let me know."

What length will she go to? She doesn't seem bothered at all. Loss of the tower, loss of Vorpal's effects, all just things to Rachel.

"I am going to put these somewhere safe," she says, holding the two halves up, then letting them fall back down to her side. A vortex of purple energy collects around her ankles and slowly swirls upwards until it vanishes in a wisp in the air.

Why did she even walk up the driveway?

-

Kimiko's dark eyes looks between the other two, settling on Keith.

"My sympathies for such a loss. If there is something more I can do to assist, please. Let me know."

Her hand comes to rest on Alexander's arm lightly.

"Alexander knows how to reach me." She offers a small, polite smile. "Or simply ask for me at Hotel Niwa in Metropolis. I am always glad to meet with friends of Alexander's."

-

Keith watches Raven do get thing and then looks at Kimiko with a strange expression.

"She thinks she can blow up a super hero headquarters with impunity. I want justice. She's got to be stopped, and exposing who is backing her up is a way to leave her toothless. Then I'll deal with her directly. "

-

A nod is given towards Keith and Alexander turns to walk towards the boat as well as the assistants that Kimiko brought with her. He tells Keith as he moves away, "I will do what I can to insure you have some measure of justice."

He rolls one shoulder as he moves, the katana settled there makes a faint click/clack of sound as it shifts with his progression.

"If you see Tel Vole or the Flash, please tell them I'll be in touch."

And with that he makes his departure.


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