I Think I'm A Clone Now

Summary:
October 20th, 2014: A lunchtime meeting in New York and there are more Peppers and Jasons than you can poke a stick at.

Upper Manhattan - New York City

Not known for its tourist trade, Upper Manhattan is generally considered to start at the base of Central Park, along 59th Street, though you're just as likely to hear New Yorkers tell you to look north of 96th Street. It's one of the most affluent areas in the U.S., a center of business and commerce and upscale residences ranging from the mansions of the Upper East Side to the high-end condos and luxury high rises of the Upper West Side. While its most northerly neighborhoods may not quite rival the two sweeping swathes of ritz and power that flank the great park, even traditionally poor Harlem has seen considerable gentrification over the past two or three decades.


Characters

NPCs

  • None

Mood Music:


The place is a little known hole in the wall family run restaurant that's been getting praise for wonderful meals and friendly service. The time is Midday the perfect time for a small meeting over lunch. The streets outside may be packed with people cars, and general commotion to be expected for New York, but inside the restaurant is peaceful, quiet, and rather down home.

It's almost oddly quiet, with a few members of staff moving about in the kitchen, but other then that it's just Jason and pepper sitting down at a rather nice booth waiting for the others to arrive. At a glance one might even think that the place had been rented out for the evening just for this meeting.

***

Having received a message from Jason Lucky about a meeting to discuss the project she had agreed to help with, Babs has arranged a lift to New York. She is just on time and is now entering the restaurant, managing the door with the ease of someone who has been disabled for sometime.

Seeing Jason and Pepper at one of the booths, Babs moves her chair forward and takes up a place at the open end. As she settles, she offers her hand to Pepper "Miss Potts, a pleasure to meet you again." Jason gets a nod "Mr Lucky, thank you for the details."

***

Jim loves these sorts of places. They're just the sort of thing he prefers to visit when he actually has the time, budget, and decided lack of a psycho alien stalker-wing-woman. He took the bus down, relishing the brief moment of freedom from the overbearing pressure of being followed. There's bound to be something awesome yet simple on this menu.

He makes his way in, then blinks a bit at the lack of a lunch-time rush. It's actually a bit off-putting. Are they trying to draw out his stalker? Is there some sort of trap being set that he wasn't told about so he'd be… genuine… in his reactions?

Paranoia. Jim has it in spades these days. And as he enters he makes his way slowly over towards the table where his boss, his boss's bodyguard, and his hypothetical 'tech support' are waiting.

"I'm not late, am I?" He pulls an old battered wristwatch out of his pocket and hmms. "Sorry about that."

***

Pepper Potts smiles and shakes Barbara's hand, then looks at Jim as he arrives, waving a hand in dismissal at his apology. "It's fine. Really." She even pushes her bag over and makes room for Jim to join them at the booth, Babs of course getting the best spot at the end of the table. No elbow-bashing for her.

***

Jason's just as quiet as he usually is not really making much in the way of conversation instead just nodding his head, and offering a small smile to the two. He looks to be in a fairly good mood this morning, maybe just something about being in this small quiet restaurant. He checks over his watch quietly when over comes one of the few waitstaff who are present in the room comes over to pass the other two a set of menu's.

***

Babs smiles at Jim as he enters but says nothing just yet. She settles in her chair, her hands folded neatly in her lap. She glances at the menu as it is placed in front of her, but waits quietly, not reaching for it.

***

Jim is really hoping this counts as one of the legendary 'business lunches' he's heard stories about but never really had a chance to partake of with previous employers due in part to not being at the right strata and also in part due to never having enough time from busy work schedules to do such. The portly fellow examines and considers the menu for a few moments after he sits at the booth without opening it.

"So how are we handling the bill?"

Hey, it's an important and pertinent question!

He smiles and nods over to Babs… out of the four of them she's probably got the most comfortable chair.

"Hey there, miss."

***

Okay, today really is a Monday, damnit. First, Pepper completely missed the car she and Jim were supposed to supposed to ride here together in, forcing her to ask Jason to pretty please give her a last-minute lift to the restaurant. Then she spent the entire ride over on the phone with the restaurant because there was some kind of mixup on the reservation, and she had to do some serious sweet-talking to get them to give them a table anyway. Well, a booth. That's gonna be cozy.

They just barely arrive ahead of Jim, and she excuses herself to the restroom to freshen up — which in this case means take a few seconds and several deep breaths to regain her composure lest she do something she'll really regret, like snap at Jim or Jason for something completely inconsequential. But NO. Even that was doomed to failure, as the FREAKING BATHROOM DOOR gets stuck and she spends a minute tugging and cursing uselessly at the door before remembering some advice from Tony and pulling a smallish Leatherman from her bag. It takes several minutes, more muttered cursing, and scraping the back of one hand harshly enough to draw blood before she succeeds in pulling the pins out of the bathroom door's hinges. She'll pay for the repairs on the door later.

Finally, FINALLY, with her hair in disarray, the blood from the scrape on her hand just barely starting to clot, her bag back on her shoulder and her Leatherman still in hand — yes, it IS the same gold-titanium alloy as the Iron Man armor so talk to Tony about it if you feel you need to — Pepper stumbles out past the askew bathroom door and heads for the main dining area looking ready to completely lose her temper if anyone so much as looks at her sideways. "Sorry, Jason, I…" She stops dead and stares at their table.

"Who the HELL is that??"

***

Jason's turns his head to look back over towards pepper with a bit of a shocked and confused expression, before looking back to the pepper that was sitting beside him. He doesn't really say anything but comes to a stand his chair falling to the ground. The waiter has already by now made his way out back to the kitchen, locking the door behind himself. There's definitely something going on.

***

The door opens to admit a tall, lean, predatory man known to most here as Jeremiah Wolfson, aka Fenris - the Destroyer Wolf. With him is… Jason Lucky? The god-wolf blinks a bit at the slight discontinuity. "Hello everyone." He murmurs. He'd sensed that Pepper was a bit upset about something and come to check. Perhaps it was the twin Luckys that got to her? Double your refreshment this is probably not.

***

At the sound of Peppers voice… behind her? Babs turns and the look on her face becomes hard. Looking between the two Peppers, Babs says "I think I should go." Her hands move to the arms of her chair and it starts to move, only to stop as Fenris and ….another Jason Lucky walk through the door. Freezing, Babs looks at the party warily "What is going on here?" her voice is low and firm.

***

Jim's gut reaction is probably not the wisest of moves, as splashing his boss in the face with a glass of water is probably not a good job keeper. But there it is, straight up and ballsy. If it's the real… Okay, Lucky with Fenris, Lucky at the table, paranoia meters just went to a nice warm afterlife as after the attempted whack with the menu he attempts to place his mass between Babs and the two seated at the table. There are two 'clones', and the table… "Get clear." is muttered to Babs. "I'll cover you."

I hope I read this right. It's gonna suck otherwise.

Well, at least it's somewhat understandable, in this confusion. He's thinking 'bomb under the table' for some reason.

***

There's a Jason with a gun, looking around completely confused, and another Jason standing beside Fenris who now has a gun as well, a whole lot of confusion coming from every side. The Jason by the table levels its gun to the Jason by the door while the one by the door instead levels its gun at the Pepper at the table. "I'd like to know what's going on myself,"

***

The Pepper at the table seems strangely unbothered by taking a glassful of water to the face, and as guns start being pulled she snakes an arm around Jim's neck and drags him into a head lock that conveniently turns him into a human shield against the pistol now aimed at her. (She's unnaturally strong, Jim.)

The angry Pepper in the middle of the room looks from one Lucky to the other, and then to Fenris. For a brief second, she looks at the tall not-really-a-man in the hope that he'll be able to figure this out, then she's moving to pull Babs out of the middle of what looks to have become one of the weirdest Mexican standoffs ever.

***

This is why Fenris sensed a disturbance in the force, as it were. That rod of his comes up and miniature whirlwinds get both the Pepper and the Lucky at the table. The actual Lucky may remember this treatment from a long time ago. The 'you're not going anywhere' treatment. "Oooooooookay." He looks over to the Table Lucky. "You have a soul, so you're fake." Since that's something the actual Jason Lucky utterly lacks.

"And you…" His eyes glance back and forth from table Pepper to bathroom Pepper. "You were locked in a bathroom and have a gold-titanium alloy leatherman."

"Would one of you fine golems like to explain what's going on to me or do I have to go to the Primeval to sort this out?" He says addressing the two at the table.

***

A fine kettle of fish that Babs finds herself in. The disabled woman sits in her chair, not saying a word looking between the table and Fenris at the door. Of course, she can't really see the Pepper behind her without craning her neck.

***

"Hggglrk" is what comes out from Jim's mouth as he's suddenly yanked into 'Human Shield' status. That did no wonders for a throat that had been abused a few weeks back. He doesn't flail. Something or someone this strong could very much right now snap his neck, and bringing Corv out wouldn't help. Instead, he goes completely limp, turning himself into three hundred plus pounds of dead weight. Hopefully he doesn't get shot, and hopefully he doesn't get his neck broken. If he does get a window of opportunity, though, he's going to jab his captor in the eyes, over his shoulder, one fluid motion. Not too many creatures can handle pokes in the eyes, right? He's counting on his bulk to work in his favor, at least long enough for someone to come up with a better idea. Hopefully not involving shooting through him.

***

LMD Pepper was apparently expecting everything but her chosen hostage to just… go boneless. She oofs and starts trying to get the man to move so she can stand up and maintain her human shield, but then Fenris does that voodoo that he do. And, yeah. This is not a good thing. Not at all.

Actual Pepper pulls Babs clear of the line of fire but not so far as to isolate the woman away from the rest of the room. Then, after a moment of rummaging about in her bag, her scraped hand reaches forward from behing Barbara's wheelchair to offer the other redhead her choice of either mace or a taser-like device. "I suspect the restaurant staff are in on this too," she tells the Gothamite faintly. "So we can't get out through the kitchen."

***

The Jason that was pointing towards the other Jason goes to run into the frey with superhuman speed only to find itself lifted up right into the air with no real way down. It fires off a few shots randomly as it tumbles through the air tazer rounds imprinting into various spots. /

The real Jason on the other hand takes his cue to fire off a round into the arm of the pepper golem trying to disable it with a tazer round of his own. No one puts his friends in danger, well none puts his coworkers in danger. Not when they might still go bowling with him.

***

"If the guns are not put down, very soon, I'm going to become upset." Fenris' voice rumbles with power few (other than Lucky) have felt at a work and the lights flicker and dim as he speaks. "I'd advise someone in the Kitchen staff to get their ass out here before I come to find you." If that's not taken seriously… well, it will be in a moment.

The God-Wolf glances about. "Barbara, Jim do either of you have any idea at all?"

***

Babs looks at Real Pepper, cautiously. Granted, she's been moved out of the line of fire… but not out of the way and the woman is offering her a means of self defence. Accepting the mace, Babs nods and murmurs quietly "I don't think we're getting out past Fenris just yet either. And I thought Gotham was dangerous"

As Fenris speaks, Babs looks at him "Don't look at me, I'm here for a meeting."

***

The heavy-set salt-and-pepper'd fellow gets buffeted by the winds and flung about with his captor. When the one limb gets shot — and thankfully the charge does not pass through to him — he takes that moment to strike over his shoulder with the index and middle finger of his left hand into the eyes of the android holding him. He has absolutely no flipping clue if that will be effective, but any normal sentient would react wildly to something coming at their eyes, and one could only presume that an automaton based off of normal people would have the same sort of reactions. Jim really hopes he's not setting his fingers up to be broken, or his neck.

Three Stooges Finger Poke GO!

***

LMD Pepper is apparently human-like enough to recoil from the Three Stooges Finger Poke maneuver, and that paired with taking a shot to the arm is enough to make her drop Jim. Thankfully the restaurant does not have vaulted ceilings so he doesn't have all that far to fall. But, things are NOT going as planned, so she turns to look at LMD Lucky. When do they cut their losses and try to flee?

Actual Pepper replies to Babs softly, "Call me a moron, but I trust Fenris. We'll be okay." She's clearly hiding behind the other redhead's wheelchair, though, and now it sounds like she's tapping at her phone's screen. In the middle of all of this chaos. Seriously.

***

There are times for fighting and there are times for running and seemingly for these two this is a time for running, very fast. No fear to be seen on Jason bot as it looks over towards the pepper bot just sending some silent message. It doesn't really seem to do much in the way of talking at all not unlike the real Jason, but with this one it's almost like it can't as if that just wasn't installed yet.

The real Jason takes this chance to run over and put himself between the bots and the real pepper, not once letting his gun lower from his targets. This is what he's here for, what he's trained for, sort of.

***

The gale rod snaps up again and a gust of wind blows in from the kitchen area, slamming the doors open. "If you even think of running, I will find you and I will not be gentle then." Fenris growls, his features starting to distort as he takes several steps toward the fake Peppers and Luckys.

***

Nodding at Peppers words, Babs replies just as softly "Oh, I don't disagree, but he's rather focussed at the moment." Hearing the other woman on her phone, Babs wonders but says nothing on the matter. Watching the Bots, Babs eyes narrow slightly, "Are they communicating?" and she reaches into her own bag to retrieve her tablet.

***

Jim collapses to the floor, wheezing for a brief second before gathering his legs up underneath him and diving forward to try and put as much distance between his former captor and himself. As he makes his escape, he's looking for any sort of thing… knife, fork, water pitcher… and throwing it into the maelstrom surrounding the two surrogate people. Foreign Object Debris can be exceptionally dangerous, after all.

This all being said, after such a display he's pretty much out of ideas short of letting the bird out, and caution is precluding that at the moment — however, this does not stop him from dropping down to the floor to use other tables as 'cover' from another assault.

Hopefully that will be a help.

***

LMD Pepper is totally in agreement with LMD Lucky. It's time to make like a tree and get out of here. Just, um, as soon as this floating thing stops. Very disconcerting.

Actual Pepper startles, but then looks up at Jason when he puts himself between her and the LMDs. "Jason?"

***

"I know, I know" Jason offers with a bit of a flat expression keeping himself by extent between the lmd's and Barbara as well. He plants his feet in place just trying to make it clear that no one is going to be getting past him. He's ready to die to protect these two for what little that's really worth in this case, especially considering Peppers policy on this kind of thing.

Round and round and round they go, where they stop no one knows. Jason bot tries to fire off a tazer round towards the wolfman so the two can escape and go for another attack, just in time for the doors to blow open and reveal a small number of staff tied up in the back room, with no sign of their waiter.

***

"Oy…" Fenris is getting disturbed. He walks up over to LMD Lucky, plucking his necklace off as he goes. It turns in an instnat into a rather ridiculsouly oversized sword. One swipe toward LMD Lucky is intended to take the barrel off the gun. If he gets the robot's wrist, he won't complain too much. "Pepper, is this possibly related to the appearance on world of Jim's boogyman or some act of corporate espionage or something more nefarious?" Eyes cut over to Jim and Barbara. "Or is this something possibly related to the two of you?"

***

Babs looks at the Real Lucky "Did you send me an email setting up this meeting?" A simple question. Turning her tablet on, Babs appears to be searching for something. At Fenris' question, she replies "Most likely related to us, don't you think."

***

"It's not me, don't think it's Babs!" Jim shouts up over at the Old wolf. And then, well, winds and rounds don't combine very well, and Jim catches two while he's exposed. He flops and twitches under the impact of the rounds, then twitches a bit more as body parts twist, distort, and reshape as something far older comes out to play. And he'd been doing so well, too.

"Stand down or be destroyed." It emanates from it, rather than being spoken.

The tone is with a certain tier of finality as claws extend and an avianoid entity strides forward, taking one step, then another as it picks up a table to use as a club. "One hurt the partner. This one's safety protocols are disengaged."

Even as this is going on, it is assessing the avenues of egress and calculating methods to stop such an exit.

***

LMD Pepper tries to take advantage of Fenris focusing on Jason bot to try and get away, no telling if she'll actually succeed or not. They seem to have made the Old Wolf angry. He's not likeable when he's angry.

Actual Pepper thinks for a moment, then calls out to Fenris and Babs, "My bet is on corporate espionage. I emailed the invitation to Barbara, but it didn't really say anything about why I was inviting her." It's about here that Pepper remembers that this entire day seems to have been geared to make her very angry, and she glares at the LMDs as if debating standing and confronting them herself.

Corvinus' arrival is always disconcerting, and this instance just proves to LMD Pepper that she really, REALLY needs to just leave. Mission be damned, heck, Jason bot is on his own. SHe's doing everything she can now to just escape.

***

The two bots seem to be running out of options as the Jason bots hand is accidentally cut clean off falling down to the ground instead of being caught up in the whirlwind. Synthetic blood sprays everywhere from the now open wrist where a hand once sat, grey metal visible on the back of the hand, and in the middle of the open wound. Now's as good a time as any for this, as Jason bot tries launching itself off the nearby wall and out of the vortex not making a single verbal sound, and they say robots don't feel fear.

***

"Get the Jason Bot." Fenris snaps as he changes. He goes from a tall man to a seven and a half foot tall wolf-man complete with fur, claws and slavering fangs. This, still with sword, is what leaps at Pepper Bot. Is she going anywhere?

Not if he has anything to say about it.

***

Putting her tablet away, Babs glances around at Pepper and considers her for a minute. Then, flicking her eyes between Fenris, Jason, Corvinus and the front door that is no longer blocked, Babs eyes are calculating. However, she doesn't say a word or move.

***

If it were Jim, Corvinus would probably say something dramatically inappropriate, like "Allez oop". Instead, the bird-being carefully calculates the probable angle that the Jason Bot would take to egress from the vortex, carefully swinging the table-club at the android with full and brutal force from its right hand. The forgery can take having a hand severed and keep moving, so the bird thing does NOT hold back. If that does not stop the cowardly creation, then fully extended talons from the left hand will drive deep into the thing, attempting to sever any power conduits, circulation systems, or the like.

"One was warned."

It will watch the Bot for any sort of movement, escape, or powering up of any sort.

"One's cooperation is imperative."

As this is going on, it is trying to position itself between the ladies and the de-handed bot, just on the off-chance there is some sort of self-destruct mechanism in it.

***

Far off a switch is flipped, and before either of the bots can run off, they simply stop moving. The kill switch engaged neither can really react to what is happening as their internal circuits fry themselves. The pepper bot being cut clean in half by Fenris's blade. For someone it seems the test is over.

***

Fenris sighs and opens a Way. "Let's get out of here. Back to SI. Pepper's office. Seems safe there. I'll send anyone who needs to go elsewhere where they need to go from there."

***

Corvinus shrugs down and lets Jim back out. Be a lot faster and easier this way, and less chance of compromising SI before they're ready to go exploring.

***

Babs now looks wary but enters the Way that has been opened. "I would like to know what just happened…after I return to Gotham." she says as she enters.

***

Pepper Potts follows Babs through the portal and is relieved almost to the point of tears to see her office. Even before everyone has finished arriving she's getting a pot of tea started. Mondays suck. Seriously.

***

Jason takes his own copy back with him through the portal, making probably one of the worse decisions of the day, but if there's anyone who will know what this thing was it's Tony. If nothing else maybe he'll be able to repurpose it into a Halloween decoration, assuming Pepper doesn't freak out too badly when they reach the other side.

***

Jim heads back to his work area to try and salvage something from the day. Mondays should be scheduled off for EVERYONE at Stark. He makes a note to put in a memo about this to Pepper.


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