The Brotherhood Of The Golden Pants

October 02, 2014: Enter, Booster Gold. Guest appearances by Johnny Storm and Vorpal


An iHop in Gotham



  • iHop Patrons

Mood Music:
Tom's Diner

The breakfast of champions tastes a little less like forbidden sunshine in your mouth when you're shivering. Gotham has finally become aware of the fact that Fall is here and has decided to catch up with events by ripping the sky open and letting it pour.

Vorpal tried to finish his route, he really did, but there came a moment when the construct umbrella he had created was useless because -he swears- it started to rain sideways. By that point, he was partway soaked and miserable and the blue-white of the neon IHOP sign across the street was beckoning like a siren. The promise of hot cocoa was irresistible to the cheshire at that point, and so he decided to crash upon the rocks. By that, of course, he meant to say pancakes and the aforementioned cup of chocolate. He discovered that the bathroom mirror had been shattered this morning (of course), so he had no way to change back to a human and, therefore, be less wet.

And so he sits there, waiting for the Gotham Deluge to end already so he can go home and find some way or another to be warm again.

Where there is rain, there are traffic mishaps. There is a flurry of honking and the screech of brakes audible over the pit-pat of raindrops, but no following thud of metal. This is because one of the vehicles involved is floating over the street, held aloft by a faintly glowing figure. Now that he has an SUV hoisted over his head, he seems to be looking around for somewhere to put it—you can't just drop something like that back into the intersection, that's solving one problem by creating another. After a moment he flies to the parking lot of the pancake palace and gently sets the vehicle down in an empty parking space.

The glowing figure, as it turns out, is Booster Gold. He is talking to the rattled driver, who has his window rolled down, and then Booster gestures upwards. A little golden ovoid is floating there and it must be taking a photograph, because Booster is smiling and giving a thumbs-up, clearly wanting to preserve this moment. The rain does not seem to be affecting him at all, though, because his hair remains perfect.

There is a dark and miserable city (not in Latveria) which is so dismal that it has been said "there is no daytime there" … and that city is called Gotham, and it's raining there. Note that there are other places where it rains a lot, and Johnny Storm doesn't live in those places either; he is only in Gotham because there's a rather important night race that is run in early October, the Gotham Park 500, aka the Gotham Night-Mare. And Stormfront Racing has a car entered, and this time Johnny's actually driving it - mostly because his main driver is out on paternity leave.

"It's raining so hard you'd think the streets would be clean," Johnny muses as he stares out the window, waiting for a table to open up. There are people taking refuge in here. He's also wondering who the glowing show-off is, since it isn't himself for once.

Vorpal takes a moment from his shivering to look up from his pancakes. There is a golden glow coming from the parking lot and he squints his eyes.
"Please don't let it be a villain wanting to get lucky," he groans to himself quietly. Fighting in the rain was the. worst. And he wasn't entirely sure if a lot of his powers would work, with visibility being so affected.

He sighs and downs his cup. Just in case. For the road and all of that.

Booster does seem to shine like a stray fragment of sunlight, which is probably unnerving in Gotham, where daylight is undoubtedly considered a fictional construct. Once the occupants of the rescued vehicle seem to be settled down and ready to drive off, the man in blue and gold looks up and around, as if his surroundings were fascinating. The floating gold thing follows him when he comes into the restaurant; the floating gold thing is glistening with water droplets, Booster seems to be completely dry.

Other than a friendly sort of nod to those who are waiting in the lobby-entry area, the tall man does not seem to be here to socialize. Booster turns and says to his floating companion, "See, it's a food purveyor. It's not a hotel."

Johnny Storm glares at the thing hovering over Booster's shoulder. "You know, HERBIE is patented, and that thing looks a LOT like a gold-plated HERBIE. So don't tell Reed about it or you'll find yourself in legal trouble."

He wrinkles his nose. Wet cat. Wait, wet CAT? He looks over at Vorpal and says, "What did you do, swim here?"

"Say what?" Vorpal looks indignant as he catches the voice, and then his eyes catch up to his sensitive ears to notice Johnny. He had been staring (yes, staring) at the stranger with the Gold Pants. You can't blame the guy, since the glowing arrival tends to look rather good in those, but a big part of it is the fact that the guy is glowing. With that combination, it was easy to not notice the otherwise rather noticeable Johnny Storm.

"Oh.. hey, Johnny. No," Vorpal answers in a rather miserable tone, "I was outside when this whole thing started… and I tried to stay with the patrol until I just couldn't deal with Gotham. Who's the Solid Gold dancer, a friend of yours?" Vorpal quips.

"This isn't a thing," Booster explains, in a reasonable tone and manner. He gestures at the floating golden object. "This is Skeets. I didn't make him, he works for me. He's basically a people."

"…thank you, sir," Skeets says to Booster, in a polite little voice. He explains to Johnny, "I'm his valet and assistant." The little droid floats there serenely and although it has no face, it seems to look Johnny up and down. "Are you Johnny Storm?"

"Get a pic, Skeets," Booster cheerfully requests, leaning over towards Johnny and flashing a bright smile and thumbs-up at the golden robot. This gesture turns into double finger-guns pointed Vorpal's way, as he says, "I'm Booster Gold, up and coming superhero. Technically based in Metropolis, but I had business here today."

"Yeah, I know, robot valet, which is what HERBIE is. Although I don't publicly admit to HERBIE being a person because that's giving Reed way too much credit."

Johnny hasn't confirmed his identity, but he does say, "If you use my pic for your publicity I'll have to charge you a fee."

He looks at the wet Vorpal and hasn't got the heart to see him dripping, so he starts radiating heat like a furnace in the cat's direction. Which may make the wet cat smell worse, but it might mean people will, maybe, move out of the restaurant sooner?

It's a little unnerving that he almost guessed the name. Vorpal opens his mouth to say something snarky, but checks himself. It isn't anyone's fault that he's a purple puddle at this point. Normally a cheerful sort himself, the wet misery visited on him has him in less than shining spirits. His mood improves visibly, though, when he senses the warmth.

A lot of wet cat jokes can be made… however, Vorpal doesn't really smell that bad, and certainly nowhere in the wet dog spectrum. There's a distinctive scent, but it isn't offensive, just … distinctive.

"Thank you," he mutters politely to Johnny. Make a cat warm, mollify a cat. Still, there was a little bit of snark in his reserves, "What's with the pictures and the thumbs and the publicity thing? Are you guys heroes or supermodels?" He smirks, and the smirk starts working its way up to a grin, but not quite yet. "Vorpal. Purple nobody. Good to make your acquaintance, Booster."

After a sip of the last remnants of hot chocolate, he adds, "And Skeets." Because people were people, no matter how football-shaped.

Booster leans back for a moment, regarding Johnny with a rather serious expression on his face. In a tone of soft awe, he says, "Maybe you should be my mentor."

Skeets hastily explains to Johnny, "I would very much like to meet this HERBIE. I have some references to him in my databanks. I am always interested in meeting with other advanced AIs, especially so in this era."

Booster is now giving Vorpal a curious look and he asks him politely, "Are you a Karnan?" And then he cheerfully says something to him in a language that is not English, and possibly not Terran in origin, as if he expected the cat to understand him. But he follows it up with English when he says, "I'm an actor and model but only as my day job. I'm way into the whole superhero thing!"

"Mentor? Dude, I'm a race car driver, I'm not an actor or a model, and 'superhero' is really not me. You should go look up Simon Williams, he's just what you need."

Oh, vile Torch, what did Wonder Man ever do to you?

"Wait, you talk interlac? How where you talk learned?" Johnny has a terrible, terrible accent and his grammar is atrocious. Then again the FF did learn it from a Rigellian.

The cheshire looks from Johnny to Booster and back to Johnny again.

"No hablo crazy moon language," Vorpal says helpfully. "What on earth are you gibbering on about? You'd better not be talking about me. I shall be rather cross," he says, cutting up a section of spongy pancake and shoving it in his mouth. Nom.

Booster perks up when Johnny starts speaking in Interlac, and when he replies it is a little slower than what he rattled out at Vorpal. "Oh, you speak Interlac! Amazing, I wasn't certain how prevalent it was in this particular era. It's not much of a surprise that you'd know it, of course." It occurs to him that Vorpal must not be an alien, after all, and therefore cannot follow this conversation. He switches to English as he clarifies for Johnny, "I don't mean like, mentoring for hero stuff and all that. More like, tips on the whole celebrity thing. Anyway, I learned the language in gradeschool." Turning to Vorpal again, Booster says, "Sorry, I thought you were Karnan. I shouldn't have assumed."

"You're right, you know. Crazy Moon Language is exactly what it is, it's called 'interlac' and it's kind of a galactic pidgin," Johnny explains to Vorpal. He mutters, "flame on" but doesn't set fire to himself in the process; he's just turned on the bio-scan in his skinsuit under his racing gear, and that's allowing HERBIE to remotely direct the suit to scan Skeets and Booster. Yeah, not a super-hero, but neither is he going to pass up the chance to get Reed some info on this possibly dangerous dude with the clearly advanced gear. That force-field, pretty impressive, even if it is a visible force-field (Sue still wins.)

"Karnan? Interlac?" Vorpal sighs and rubs his forehead. "And here I thought I was the one who makes people wonder if they have been drinking. You're telling me you're from another planet?" Vorpal asks Booster. Funny, Booster doesn't look like a little green man. "Nanu Nanu and the like? And how do you—" he stops himself from asking Johnny how he learned it. He was part ofthe Fantastic Four. It was a given that they had Fantastic Adventures

Booster laughs a little and flashes another of his thousand-watt grins. "No, I was born in Gotham, actually." He turns to look out the window at the rainy city. "It's kinda weird to visit it like this, it's all so clean and uncluttered." He has goggles on; perhaps he is not seeing Gotham clearly due to them. Even a cursory scan reveals that he has a great deal of technology wrapped around himself, some of it possibly nanotech, with a few materials and alloys that do not currently exist on Earth. Booster, especially, has a fair amount of chronal energy humming through him.

Skeets pipes up, helpfully, "We're from the 25th century. The 'twenty-four hundreds', if that helps at all."

Johnny remains blissfully unaware of the chronal energies, and the rest of the tech, though Reed's probably getting alarms back in the Baxter Building.

"25th Century. Of course. And Gotham is somehow dirtier then? I would think it'd collapse in on itself from pure disgusting first."

Johnny finally gets a chance to order food. "Pancakes. The cat had pancakes, I want pancakes. And two eggs over easy and maple syrup, the real stuff. Hey, future boy, d'you have maple syrup in the future or have they paved the whole planet by then?"

"It's not as nice as this," Booster admits, gesturing vaguely at the window. The glow surrounding him abruptly winks out, although it is unclear as to whether his force field is also off. "And there's not much in the way of air traffic." He looks a little confused, then, at Johnny's question, and looks at Skeets. The two hold a rapid-fire, quiet conversation that is not Interlac, but doesn't sound like English either, although 'maple?' can be heard in there. Then, Booster says to Johnny, "Oh, it's not all paved. But no, I don't think we have anything like what he was eating," he nods towards Vorpal. "Or what you were just talking about. This is all…" he gestures with both hands, indicating the restaurant in general, and the plates of various patrons. "It's all very exotic."

"Exotic. This. Late Twentieth Century Dining Kitsch is exotic. Dude, at least order some food. If you or Skeets can't eat it, I'll eat it, but you gotta observe the courtesies or they'll kick you out for loitering," Johnny says, semi-impatiently.

Or not; the waitress is actually ogling Booster's … booster.

"Gotham? You were born in Gotham?" Vorpal looks skeptical. "My dear man, I find that an impossibility. You glow. Heck, under the right conditions it could be said that you are dangerously close to sparkling-"

And when time travel is mentioned, he grows even more skeptical. Cats are nature's skeptics, they doubt everything- they are prone to doubt your own existence, until of course it is time to feed them.

"Ok, aliens I'm inclined to believe," after all, Gar has told him of an ex-team-mate of his who was a gold-skinned alien…In fact, he may have caught a distant glimpse of the woman during the entire kerfuffle at the museum where a roaring monster from the prehistoric night came to claim Lara Croft's eggs. But he didn't really talk to her, he was too busy trying not to hurl at the stench that poor Berto ended up with. "-but Time Travel? Okay, that's really, really stretching it. You can't travel to time because you'll end up screwing everything up. You can't have effects that appear before causes… and all that."

Booster looks thoughtful. He clearly does not want to break the rules here, so he turns and to the waitress, "I would like a 'coffee', please." He pronounces the beverage with care, as if it were truly exotic. The tall man then tells Vorpal, "That is not entirely true. It is possible to wreck a timeline if you're not careful, and even destroy it entirely. But time is semi-fractal in nature and is actually pretty elastic." He moves his hands, clearly trying to illustrate something that makes sense to him. "You can travel through a particular time line over and over and it will more or less be the same… but subtle differences crop up each time you go through it."

"Sometimes," Johnny agrees. "Certain periods are really resistant, but others are reallly tweaky."

Of course, Dr. Doom's time machine works entirely perversely, unlike the Time Bubble tech that they've traced coming through sometimes. Johnny's pancakes are here, and he pours maple syrup on them like it was fuel. (For him, it might as well be.)

It's terrifying how fast the Torch can eat - like that eating contest between Loki and Logi, almost. Or like he was eating a full breakfast at a pit stop with only 90 seconds to consume a full meal. He nods to the cat, who may be dry by now, and says, "Feel free to drop by the Baxter Building, but have Skeets call ahead."

And a twenty on the table, he's wiping his lips and he's … gone. In a moment between surges of rain, he's in a red corvette, and out onto the road, and only the traffic cops might see him in the distance.

"Well… if you're from the future, do you have any way to prove it?" Vorpal grins, and then waves to the stack of pancakes. "Feel free to sit down and join in. This is more than I can eat in one sitting, anyways.

Booster looks a little baffled at this. "How would I prove it? I can't tell you things that happen in the future because the only way to see if that's true is to wait until that stuff happens." He gets his coffee from the waitress and sits down, but politely declines the pancakes, explaining, "Thank you but I'm really not used to the food in this era, I've been sampling things very slowly." Much quieter, and behind his hand he says, "Also, if I go off of my calorie allotment, Skeets gets upset."

The little robot, who can probably hear all of this with perfect clarity, says nothing. He just serenely bobs in mid-air.

"Would be useful to have someone like that around to watch my intake." Vorpal smirks, "If I didn't spend most of my time jumping along rooftops here, I'd probably have a hard time fitting in my suit." He gives Booster a long look, evidently still skeptical about the whole time travel thing. "Anyways, if you're doing the hero thing, I should introduce myself properly. I'm Vorpal, and I'm with the Titans. We're only a couple of months old ourselves as a team. We formed at the end of July so… that's about two months and some change."

"Oh, that's cool. I know who the Titans are," Booster nods at this, holding up his coffee cup. The steam curling from it does not seem to actually touch him, showing no effect against his goggles. He takes a sip, and it seems to distract him as he remarks, "Coffee is awesome." He holds his hand out palm-up to Skeets, who drops a narrow slip of a business card into it. "This has my information. Web-stuff, phone, that kinda thing." He offers it to Vorpal. "I can't live the hero life twenty-four/seven because I have a day job… gotta pay the bills, you know?"

Vorpal sighs and hands Booster his own card after accepting his. Vorpal's is much more modest, and his website seems to comprise solely of a tumblr account (, because all the other names were taken). "Don't I know it. I'm making a living as a nightclub bouncer. Worked the warehouse job before that, until I got killed anyways. Had to resign because I just couldn't deal waking up at four in the morning everyday anymore… and besides, it was cutting into Gar's sleep, and he's a grad student so he's getting just enough sleep as it is." Vorpal sips his own cup of coffee now that the chocolate is gone. "Coffee is my lifeblood these days, really."

"You got killed but you're alive again. That's pretty cool," Booster says, clearly finding this very interesting, but apparently not surprised by it. "I have to be on-set at 6:30am on the days I'm working, so I know what you mean about waking up early. I always wonder, do all superheroes work? I'm pretty sure some of them don't have to." he looks upwards, thoughtful. "Being totally rich would be the best thing that could happen to anyone."

At this, the purple cat smirks. "Cool? I guess so. Left me a huge scar in my human form, though… and I don't recommend the feeling of dying from a mirror shard impaling your heart. Or the identity crisis that lasts for a bit after your soul has gotten grafted onto another one."

Coffee. Pour. Sip. "As for wealthy heroes… well, Garfield's a student but I'm pretty sure he doesn't need to work." He swishes his coffee around in the mug, adding a little creamer. "I don't know exactly how much he makes a year partly because I'd probably freak out, partly because it's not the money I'm interested in." Sip. "Zatanna does her show with her dad, but they have a whole estate and everything so she probably doesn't need to work, she just likes it. So there's two heroes right there who are independently wealthy. I'm sure there's more… Zee got hers through her dad. Gar… well," he sighs "Got his by losing two sets of parents. And stuff from the television show he was in and stuff. Like I said, I don't know the particulars." For someone who basically sleeps (chastely, it should be noted) with his boyfriend almost every night, he's shown an unusual level of restraint in digging too deep in memories that might be too painful to relive, or indelicate things such as financial situation. He only knows what Gar alludes to, and that's enough for him for now.

"So— why are you here? I mean, you're from the future, right?" Skeptical. "Why would anyone want to live in the past?"

"Some people don't get a second chance, though. You did. So it's actually not surprising to me that you're doing the hero thing," Booster says, setting his coffee cup down. He pulls off his goggles and cowl; clearly he does not have a secret identity to preserve, and perhaps he feels wearing this part of his costume during a friendly discussion is a little like wearing mirrored sunglasses. "I want to be a superhero. I can't do that in my native time, it's illegal. So I decided to come to this era… we call it the 'Heroic Age'. Lots of opportunities!"

Vorpal hms. "The reasons I took up the job are a little more complicated than just getting a second chance." He nibbles at a pancake, but clearly he's not going to finish the plate. Outside, the rain has finally slowed down to a drizzle.

"Hm, I should get back home and change into something human and dry before I get lectured on catching my death of cold." He smirks. "Do you mind if I hit you up to have a talk over coffee sometime? Talk about the life and things of that sort?"

Networking. Just because you don't swallow a guy's story, it doesn't meanyou should say 'no' to potential resources and friendships.

~He probably isn't from the future~
~What makes you say that?~
~Well, if being a hero is illegal back where he's from…~
~And he's come to this time to be a hero…~
~And if people in the future do know how to time travel..~
~Then how come A) We don't have time travelers all over the place and B) Nobody has come from the future to take him back because of doing something illegal?~
~Beats me.~

"You can tell me more about your future and we can brainstorm."

"Sure. I don't get called to set every day." Booster rises from the booth, very lightly for such a big guy, although this is not too surprising considering he was flying around earlier. "I mean, I can't tell you too much… partly because there's a huge chunk of history… er, the future for you… that we don't know. But if you want to hear about why we don't have superheroes, sure. It's kinda sad."

The temptation is there, of course. Tell me what happens to , does __ live to a ripe old age? Will I be remembered?

~He thought you were an alien, so my guess on that is a rotund 'no'~
~You know how to make a girl feel special.~

"Of course, Booster." Vorpal drops several bills on the table, enough to cover him, and slips out of the booth proper, his movements carrying the expected feline grace. He grins and offers the man a handshake before heading for the doorway.

"Oh… and a bit of friendly advice to a relative newcomer to Gotham: They're all fricking mad here, so take care of yourself. And if you see a man with skin as white as paper, lips as red as blood, hair as green as a toxic spill and a suit as purple as me— fly away as fast as you can and find a Bat-person to help you. Trust me on that."

And with that, he vanishes into thin air.

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