Meet The Press

September 25, 2014: Carol Danvers invites a few heroes over for an informal interview.

The Daily Planet

It's the Planet



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Mood Music:
“Newspapers” - Stan Ridgway

Recently, Carol Danvers took over as the newsroom editor at the Daily Planet. It's been a bit of an adjustment from Gotham, but she's finally comfortable enough to start pushing a few angles. One of those has been profiles of the rich and influential. But her personal project is a little more optimistic. Using certain channels, Carol put out the word that the Daily Planet was going to be working on a series of articles about what it means to be a hero, and an invitation for those going about the costumed hero lifestyle to show up at one of the conference rooms at the Daily Planet in Metropolis.

Vorpal had expected for there to be more people outside of… well, himself. As he waits for his host, he swivels around gently on one of the chairs in the aforementioned conference rooms, looking around. Well, it stood to reason- vigilantes worked at all sorts of hours. He probably wasn't the only one, but there must be several who will show up over the course of several days at all sorts of hours. He'd let Gar know of the invitation, but since the green man had an exam coming up, Vorpal figured he'd go ahead himself first and then Changeling would come when he had the time- or if he wanted to.

Vorpal was still a little antsy about that tabloid article. Him and Changeling holding hands (where the hell was that photographer?) walking around the ESU campus, and the 'Beast Boy Finds Fuzzy Frolic Fling' heading buried in one of the pages. He hasn't had any brushes with reputable media so far… but at least he knows that he won't have to put up with something so juvenile.

Still. It would have been nice if a more established hero had been here as well. For moral support. Ah well… the cheshire cat stretches a little and waits.

Carol doesn't exactly look in the room as she enters, talking over her shoulder to someone outside. "Just make sure there's plenty of…" As she turns back to the room and finds one lonely cat, she pauses, brows rising. "Or not. Thanks, Becky." A rueful smile curves as she turns back to Vorpal. "I probably should have realized people might be a little wary of all showing up at once here," she chuckles, stepping forward to offer a hand. "Carol Danvers, editor. Thanks for coming."

"Keith O'Neil. Vorpal, Miss Danvers. It's a pleasure to meet you." Vorpal takes her hand and shakes it, giving her one of his grins. It's a trademark, after all. "I guess the veterans know better. We at the Titans tend to use the iHop as a meeting point for now. That's probably not a good idea but… breakfast."

"iHop, huh?" Carol laughs, smile flashing. Her grip is firm, no-nonsense, and she pulls out a chair next to Vorpal. "Well, at least no one goes hungry." Though she's dressed professionally, she seems comfortable at the table. "And nice to meet you, Keith. Sorry it's not more of a party," she says, looking around the otherwise empty room. "I was air force, I guess I'm just more used to people who want to blow their own horns. Your Titans and this group of mutants had me thinking, though."

The conference room at the Daily Planet is set up for a crowd, but it looks like Carol and Keith are the only people in residence.

Cameron would normally not go near one of these things with a 100 foot ladder truck. She really does not like the media attention. Even with recent events, she's very not keen on doing this when there are lives out there that need saving. But after a different situation where the paparazzi bombarded her with a whole bunch of questions that she had not the choice about…

'What about Gotham?'

…she's been at least reconsidering the possibility of maybe someday having a nice quiet sit-down interview with someone at some quiet spot.

Then Mom called. And Maria Tenoaks is a force of nature when she gets her mind set on something. Mom said something about the Daily Planet having a nice quiet little talking-thing that would be *just perfect* for Cameron.

It doesn't cross the new heroine's mind that perhaps Mom might have had something to do with setting it up — for her, at least — and with some reluctance she makes her way through the security desk where she is waved right on in. A couple of the security guards even take cel-pictures of the notably reclusive yet publicly-known Columbia as she makes her way in, slouched shoulders totally out of keeping with her stature.

Her eyes alight upon the others in the room and quietly she finds a cubicle to use as partial cover for the moment.

"You mean the X-Men Red team? I know them, they're wonderful people. We had a mixer that… well, you guys covered the cleanup, so you know what happened there." The cheshire grins. "It wasn't terri — hey!" his green eyes light up as Cameron enters the room. "I know you! That burning building and all of that - " a quick turn to Carol, "You should have seen her, she was fricking magnificent. Holding up a building and all." Vorpal seems suddenly energized, having more than one person to play off from.

"I think there's something to this trend of public teams," Carol admits, standing up to pour herself a coffee and looking up when Vorpal calls over to someone. "Columbia, isn't it?" she says with a welcoming smile. "Come on over, make yourself comfortable. Looks like we're not going to run out of coffee or cake, at least," she invites.

Cameron shoves her hands in her trenchcoat pockets as Vorpal 'outs' her before she was really ready to say anything. She kind of winces when that is done, almost like someone poking a raw nerve or something.

"You did the work. You put the girders in place so I could hold it up, and you were running around saving lives." To her, the standing around holding the building up was almost a failure, because of the eventual collapse. Not that she could have done anything to save the place, but… people lived there that lost their homes. That's rough.

Thankfully, no mention of the Mtown riots. Or that paparazzi thing over at Senre.

She makes her way over at the invitation, with a weak smile. It's almost like being forced to go hug that aunt that smells like Vic's Vaporub, but you gotta do it or Mom will be upset. She straightens up a little bit… though some of the slouch is present still.

"Columbia, yes."

Her level of comfort is to quietly take a water bottle and sip at it.

"Thank you."

"Please, you're just being modest. Anyone could do what I did. But I can't hold up a building." The cheshire grins at Carol, "She's being modest. Don't let her… Coffee… and cake? Hmm… I'll have to have my slice boxed. I can't taste sweets in this form."

"Now that's what I call a disadvantage," Carol says to Vorpal with a salute of her mug before she takes a sip of coffee. She looks back to Cameron next, considering her for a moment. "That's the sort of opinion I'm interested in hearing, actually," she says with a small smile, moving back toward the table. "The world is changing. Some people wear masks. Others are stepping out into the light. Why?"

Columbia wants to argue with Vorpal but every time she tries to, he just deflects it back on her. Why can't he just take the credit? Was there something bad with that building? Was there some subtext she was completely missing?

The tall woman takes a sip of her water. At least her hands are out of her pockets as she leans her butt against a desk without moving it out of line.

"Well, in my case…"

No matter how this is going to go down, there's going to be archive footage mentioned, there's going to be references back. She straights up a bit, almost like a rookie on the department being confronted on some procedure in the first year.

"…I didn't get a choice on it? People need rescuing and healing."

Even though she does grumble a bit about it and it is almost a serious game to get her few moments of privacy these days. There's no bitterness in her tone at the moment, though, it's more a 'matter of fact' response that a newbie gives to the lifer sergeant on an inspection tour. This is, after all, the *real media* she's talking to.

"In my case… well, I tried to keep up a pretense of a secret identity," Vorpal says after Columbia. "But then I came to the realization that I didn't really have much of a life worth keeping secret outside of doing what I do. I've got no family left, so I don't have anyone to protect outside of the people I already protect." He rests his chin on his hands. "All of my friends or loved ones are capes."

"People certainly do," Carol agrees, leaning back in her chair and cradling her coffee between her hands. "And in your case, Columbia, it's my understanding that you came into your powers rather publicly to begin with. So hard to avoid it. What about you, Keith?" she asks the Cheshire. "Maybe you didn't have anyone personal to protect with a secret identity, but why go into the hero game to begin with?"

Columbia glances over at Vorpal briefly, raising an eyebrow. At least she still has her folks and the department. That's a bit of an eye-opener as she cracks her neck some.

"Damn." is offered over towards Vorpal, followed by an unspoken but clearly implied 'sorry!'.

She nods to Carol, thankful that the next question goes over to Keith so she can sip on her water.

Thank goodness for small favors.

Vorpal mulls over this for a few seconds. "I came into my powers by dying, basically. You can't see it in this form, but when I'm a human, I have a scar this big, right over my heart. I fell onto the shard of a mirror that contained the soul of… well. What I am now."

The cheshire strokes his chin with one finger, looking off into the distance. "When your soul gets shattered and refracted, like a funhouse mirror, it's crazy. Bits of who you are flying all over the place, trying to stick together and not become nothingness. Add to the mix that there is another soul doing that with you and… well."

The cheshire shrugs his muscular shoulders and smirks, "When I came back, I knew I could be whatever I wanted to be. I had abilities I never thought I would have, and I wasn't quite sure who I was…" His eyes focus on Cameron and Carol, coming back to the present. "I was sixteen when Wonder Woman came here, you know. I was sixteen, picked on, lonely, and so far back in the closet that I kept finding Christmas presents and was about to get the welcome comittee to Narnia. There are some details I can't remember, because my soul was refracted. Some things I'll never remember. But I remember Wonder Woman. I remember reading about her and her opinions, and I remember thinking that she seemed to be fighting for the kind of world where I wanted to live. The kind of world I would feel safe in."

"So… when I was in that warehouse and I was going to decide my fate… I remembered her. I asked myself what would Wonder Woman do? And the answer was… well. Self-evident."

He reaches over and sips his coffee.

Carol knows that story all too well. Too many parts of it. But then, that's Ms. Marvel's story, and Carol Danvers doesn't have anything to say about it just yet. "And once you decided that was the way you wanted your life to go, you found that there were other people with similar opinions. How do you feel about the relationship between capes, as you say, and the regulated law enforcement agencies?"

Wow. That was deep. In comparison, Cameron's 'child of supers' is… well, it doesn't even really have a candle. And the guy died, too? Well… she couldn't've saved him even after the powers, so he gets a pass on that… and is his closet thing referring to the hero thing or something else? No matter what, though, the guy has some serious balls to keep doing this. Most folks would just walk away from that kind of thing!

Cameron nods quietly to Vorpal's explanation. Mind not blown, she's seen some pretty weird stuff already, but definitely a whole new level of respect. Still not enough to justify him dumping all the attention on her, though!

Mentioning Wonder Woman is both a positive and a negative though. From a positive side it's something Mom harps on all the time. But from the negative side, Mom hardly ever lets up on it And a broken record starts sounding a bit worn after a while.

She nods a bit, and listens to Vorpal's comments about law enforcement, especially given some recent media coverage regarding the Titans. Columbia has a good relationship with the police, she's curious to see how others work with this herself.

"I believe that those in the capes community should strive to understand the law and collaborate whenever possible with the appropriate authorities. At the end of the day, we all have the same basic rights, and there are things that are important to know— you know, a hero who is actively collaborating with law-enforcement agencies has to stick to the rules and the protocols, otherwise you end up with issues such as evidence not being admissible in court. Those who do not collaborate on a regular basis aren't exactly breaking the law, but they need to learn the difference between a citizen arrest and… well. All sorts of legal issues that are important. We're here on the side of justice, so it's important to make sure we do things right, whenever possible." The Cheshire grins. "It's also important to read a lot on the subject. It's super complicated and I don't understand all of it… someone needs to write a book called 'Superheroes and the Law' or something like that. But… I'm big on collaboration. Even if sometimes there are misunderstandings… we're fighting for the same things."

"I'm pretty sure the SRD has one of those books," Carol says ruefully. "Except it's more of a pamphlet, and consists of 'assume they screwed it up somehow.' Unfortunately." For all her talk of interviews, she isn't taking notes. In fact, the editor is the only member of the Daily Planet staff here. "So what's next? Do you try to hold down a day job? Rely on donations? The Red team seems to have a business plan in place, though there might be some concerns about heroes as a business. Like military contractors."

Cameron lives the collaboration every shift-day. Even though there are those who have quietly or even not-so-quietly tried to persuade her to quit her job and take up hero-ing full time, there's still a responsbility to be a productive member of society. How does one eat if one isn't making some money on the side? And endorsement deals and anecdotals… the thought of them leaves her feeling a bit dirty inside. No one would have approached her before she got power for any of that kind of thing, so why do they need to do that now? It's the whole 'Teen Wolf' thing, as far as she's concerned.

She nods vigorously and points to her nose and Vorpal a couple of times during his commentary.

"I have a slightly different perspective, because I was a paramedic first. Working with law enforcement is crucial and key. And that's my day — and night — job."

Realizing that she's kind of spoken out of turn, perhaps, she gets quiet and nods encouragingly to Vorpal, letting him answer with a slight bit of embarrassment.

And as far as the 'taking notes bit'… Cameron's seen her father remember obscure stuff from twenty years ago to settle an argument, so she doesn't question the power of memory unless someone else brings it into question.

"Sorry, Keith, go ahead."

"Oh no, no sorries. The questions are for the two of us." Vorpal looks at Carol and ponders. "Well… I can't speak for the Titans as a group- we still don't have a base after the attack. As an individual… well, I do try to have a job, but it interferes a lot with the more important things. Not that eating and staying alive aren't important, but I could see myself open to the idea of endorsements of things I ethically approve of, or maybe some merchandise. Nothing excessive, only enough to keep me fed and with a roof over my head while I focus on keeping people safe. I'm certainly no gloryhound… but I would like to have some means to keep myself independent. It's hard, when all you've got is a highschool diploma, but I'm determined not to make myself a burden to Gar—er, my friends."

"Your day job, yes," Carol nods encouragement to Columbia when she joins in. "So you have a certain amount of training in the field, and you often find yourself at an emergency situation. You work emergency response, both as a paramedic, and as a hero. What about you, Keith? Ever think of joining the police force, or military? Do the Titans focus on emergency response to events in progress, or are you more proactive, patrolling in search of crime?"

Cameron nods a bit to the 'eating' comment but slightly shakes her head at the endorsement thing. That's how it all begins, then you end up either in a skin mag or selling used cars or something. How many athletes end up in a similar boat?

She is very thankful that the questions are kind of aimed at Keith at the moment. Gives her a chance to be quiet and let the other guy take the spotlight… after all, he's got a team and seems to be much better at the discussion topics.

"We patrol," Keith answers, "We all have specific areas. Robin, of course, is our Gotham expert. We do emergency response as well, but we prefer to try to tackle events before they become emergencies. As far as joining the military or the police…" Keith grins. "While I have nothing but admiration for those who follow that path… I'm a cat. Well, I'm a human, but my soul is feline as well. I do not think I would operate well within a very structured environment. I do when I must, but to make it a daily living? I'd wither." He thumbs towards Cameron. "Columbia has major steel, being a paramedic. While I don't really second-guess myself on the field, if I were to have someone's life in my hands the way medics do, I couldn't deal with it. Do you do patrols?" This last was aimed at Columbia, easing her into the question.

"You might be surprised," Carol winks to Keith. "Not everybody in the armed forces is particularly good at following orders. I'd imagine," she continues, looking toward Columbia, "That being on the emergency frequencies would help with knowing when there's something that needs attention. How do you deal with hearing about something happening if you're already on the job, or there's another unit that's closer than you are?"

The statuesque woman nods at Keith's description, sounds pretty good, solid explana—hey, he's turning it back on her again! Dangit! She smiles a little bit and shrugs.

"When it was looking like I wasn't going to be like either one of my parents, I had to do something to help. Can't turn my back on it. People need me."

She shakes her head.

"That's training. Training and skill is what dealing with that goes to, and that's not easy. Nor should it be. Plenty of folks on the Department do the same thing I do, only they can't take a bullet or catch a car. Credit to them more than me, actually." She pauses.

"I do patrols, but they're not the 'normal' 'catch bad guy' patrols. I can heal. So when I'm not on duty I go out on my own and just kind of walk around, seeing if folks need help."

She tilts her head slightly at Carol's comment.

"If I'm on the job, I help the people I've been assigned to help first. There are others that can handle the other calls. It's why we're a Department, not just a bunch of folks running around willy-nilly. Help the patients I'm with *first* THEN, and only THEN if we're secured do I break away. Thankfully there hasn't been anything really bad yet, but I suspect if things got tight Dispatch might request I go help out at other locations."

She glances at Carol, hoping that answered the question.

"You can heal? That's definitely a great asset to have. I can try to protect people, but there'll always be someone who gets by me and tries to hurt someone. It'd be great to have you to rely upon. I've always thought that healers are sorely underappreciated." Vorpal says, sipping his coffee.

"That's the truth," Carol nods to Vorpal's comment about healers. "Whether it's something you're entirely comfortable with or not, healers are something in short supply. Not just for normal people, but even for healers. Obviously around here," she adds ruefully, "Less of a concern. But there are plenty of people in the hero game who can't always take every hit. And they can't hit up a hospital, either, without having to answer some pretty hard questions."

Cameron nods to Vorpal's comment, then shrugs. Growing up with her father being around and having it much better than she could be tends to make her a bit self-conscious about the ability. "Yeah. Just the worst cases as long as they haven't flat-lined yet."

She can actually do more than that, but downplaying it always seems to be better.

"By law, because I'm a paramedic, I have to follow the same rules about consent and privilege that a physician has to follow. And if someone tries to pry that information out of me without proper authority…"

Cameron's tone actually gets a little bit serious there. Perhaps not 'military' serious, but she does take that charge to heart.

"That being said, if someone is a fugitive, I'm also obligated to inform the authorities if I render assistance. Thankfully, that hasn't really come up yet. About the biggest one was over in New York a couple of weeks ago, but… that was a whole other thing."

Dangit, why did *she* have to bring up MTown?

"I could have definitely used you back when I sprained my ankle. I had to hobble around…" Vorpal pauses. And get carried around by a certain someone, which led to them spending more time together, which - "Well, okay, maybe that wouldn't have been necessary." Sometimes bad things were blessings in disguise. Who knew?

The MTown issue quickly glossed over by Vorpal saying, "Going back to the earlier subject of the X-Men, I think Roberto Da Costa had an excellent idea about teams collaborating. All of us have different levels of experience, and I think it would really be a good thing for us to have mentor figures. I was lucky enough that the Titans have at least one active member who is a veteran, and another inactive member who is the same. But a lot of younger heroes do not have that advantage- like me, when I first started."

"So, some sort of hero training program?" Carol pauses, a wry smile curving. "Basic training for heroes. Tricky. Especially for the ones who come into powers before they come into legal age. You'd need parental consent, and a whole lot of other things to be responsible about it. But it's an interesting…" She stops as a secretary comes over, leaning down to whisper something to the editor. "And it sounds like I'm needed," Carol says afterwards, looking back to the others apologetically. "Thank you both for coming out. If you don't mind, I'm going to send a couple of the reporters in here to chat with you? And if you ever need something from the Planet, give me a call, yeah?"

Cameron shakes her head at the comment about the sprained ankle. That really isn't what her healing is good for. Then she shrugs.

"I wouldn't mind working with others, in fact, it really helps take the load off sometimes." Usually after the fact when the media circus begins. She can do so much more healing if she's not distracted.

"I've gotten some advice and help from more experienced folks, but… I'm not confident on all they suggested. I've been doing pretty well on my own and I don't want to stop working on the Department just because. And I'll certainly do that, Miss Danvers."

Cameron starts identifying exits as she sips at her water.

"Il, ah, actually should be going myself."

Her reason becomes self-evident as her stomach growls in a most menacing fashion.


Vorpal blinks, and then smirks at Cameron. "Heh, you go on ahead. I'll distract them." He could talk to reporters. Why not? That Kent guy wasn't too bad… what could they possibly ask?

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