It's All Keith's Fault

Summary:
October 21, 2014: The title says it all- the Joker attacks Robinson Park.

Robinson Park


Characters

NPCs

  • Joker's thugs

Mood Music:
Voodoo Mon Amour


Bunker thought that a little training out in the dark in the park would be a good thing, so he's taken Keith out to the broad tree-filled expanse of Robinson Park - a concealed clearning in an area few people come to, these days. He looks eager and ready, the costumed boy bouncing along. "So, here's the thought: just get out of the house and do … something, just purely physical," he says, tugging at his cowl.

Keith isn't wearing any costume… he doesn't need to. The costume that fits his feline shape is a little awkward in his human shape, so he's simply wearing his workout clothes. "So you say… but I bet the real reason is that you just want to humilliate me in training. Admit it." Keith grins.

Bunker points to himself. "Moi?! I am the most unassuming…" and with that he flings a set of soft spongy psionic bricks at Keith, glowing purple in the darkness. "You can dodge a brick, you can dodge a crook," he says.

Of course, Keith wasn't expecting that just yet, and the first set hits him with their… sponginess. He falls back a little, "Hey, you're cheating, you big purple Nerf gun!" he looks to dart behind a tree.

Boop! Boop!Boop!Boop!Boop! BLOOP! follows Keith as he dodges behind the tree, and then.. silence. Nothing. No bricks, nothing… the wind blows trough the park, suddenly eeirily quiet…

Keith narrows his eyes. Okay, so this was like lazer tag, except that Miguel had psionic legos. He could do this.

He crouches low and then leaps, trying to cover the space between trees so he can duck behind the other one.

Commando tactics aside, the night remains quiet. Leaves, teased by the wind, skitter by.

Okay. Miguel was being cute. There was some serious surprise coming on, the redhead feels.

So let's upset the expectations a little, he thinks. He reaches up and begins to climb the nearest tree, to try and get a good look of the area… and where Miguel might be hiding.

Ooops! Miguel was 'hiding' on a floating raft of bricks about twenty feet up, waiting for Keith to make an appearance, but now… Keith is above him and he's oblivious, still watching the treeline.

Keith grins. Score one for the ginger. He gauges the jump, climbing stealthily until he is just high enough over that he can jump onto the raft without putting himself at risk…

And jump!

He is going to try and grab Miguel from behind to startle him as he lands. "Oogabooga!"

Bunker is stretched out on the raft, looking down, watching, waiting… he's about to drift down and go look for Keith until BOOM! He's jumped! The masked boy yips, annnnnd… that's his concentration, and the bricks vanish! The pair hurtle briefly to the ground until at the last second, Miguel manages to reform his bricks - and remembers to make them /soft/ - and they both land with a WHUMP on the ground, Miguel under Keith as he tries to scramble free!

Keith oofs, the wind knocked out from the cushioned fall. As Miguel scrambles, he reaches out to grab him by a foot, if he can. "Oh no you don't! I caught you fair and square!"

Bunker is indeed caught and he lays on the bouncy purple 'mattress' as he falls back laughing from releif. "You win, you win!" he yelps, laying on the bricks and trying to control himself, then failing and laughing again.

"Hey, cats climb trees, that's what we do!" Keith says, sliding up to Bunker's side and sitting down on the grass next to him. "You totally should have used yarn balls. Just 'cause."

The cowled boy closes his eyes, chest still heaving with suppressed laughter, and he grins, all stretched out on the cool grass once he lets the bricks dissipate. "I can't.. can't make those, yet.." he says, opening his eyes and looking up at Keith, smiling. "I guess you do climb trees.." he says, considering.

"What, you think I'm only useful as a cat?" Keith quips, and looks at Bunker with a grin. "Incidentally… did you design your costume to be so… ahem. You know?" He had to know. "Also, I would have never thought of putting purple and maroon together, it works surprisingly well."

Bunker flashes a smile as he gestures to the skintight one-peice suit he's in. "I know it does; fan-mail never lies," he says, then gets a considering look. 'But what do you mean by the ahem?" he says.

"Well… sexy really," Keith raises an eyebrow and crosses his legs. "Considering you've seen me drunk and spooning with Robin, we have no secrets between us. You've got great legs. And similar. It just seems that your costume sort of emphasizes them."

The redhead reaches to rub the back of his neck, "I don't think I could get away with it, honestly. You're way braver than I am."

Bunker flashes a smile. "Oh, you mean the whole one-peice thing? Yeah, it's pretty unforgiving and yes, I totally designed it that way," he says with a quiet and perhaps sly smile. "I think you could do the same," he says quietly. "I am not so much brave as not minding people see me like this, no?"

"Maybe," Keith says, looking at his room-mate's costume. "Honestly, Miguel? You're a total sweetheart, and hot as hell. Why is it that you haven't hooked that magic-casting boy around your little finger already?" the redhead leans back on the grass and looks at the sky. "'dya need help? I can always arrange an accidental romantic rendezvous like I did for Robin and Spoiler…"

Bunker blushes. "I.. would not mind that. I think about him all the time, but every time I'm around him, I freeze up!" He shakes his head. "I've never done that before. This isn't the first time I've been with someone; I had a couple boyfriends back in Mexico when I was younger, but here…" he sighs. "I have no idea why he affects me like that….

"That's because you've got the bug. It's not just flirting." Keith scratches his chin. "I'm the same way with Gar. Have you talked with him at all?"

Bunker closes his eyes, laying stretched out on the grasss. "He's so handsome it aches. No, I can't get up the nerve," he says. "Just.. just a little." He sighs. "I am being an idiot, I know, I should just toss him a club shirt and tell him we're going dancing but…"

The redhead hmms. "Yeah, it sounds like I need to contrive something for the two of you, then." His fingers play with the blades of grass, "Okay, tell me about a typical date that you'd have with your boyfriends in Mexico. What'd you do?"

Bunker sighs. "Nothing weird, really. We'd go to movies and out to eat, hold hands on the rooftop, sneak some kisses under the bleachers at a game, that kind of stuff. Once I got my powers, we'd go further afield; out into the desert and lay there and watch shooting stars. Silly stuff like that."

"Hmm… I'll make it work for you." Keith says, stretching a little, and then leaning over Miguel. "I'll be your fairy godmother, Cinderella, deal?" He says, giving him a peck on the nose. "I'll get your boy for you."

Bunker's breathing stops as Keith leans in, then smiles as his nose is pecked. "OK, Keith, thank you.. I'd… really like that…" he says quietly.

Keith grins, "Hey, what are friends for?" he says quietly, and runs a finger down Miguel's jaw. "You know, if I didn't have a boy of my own, I'd totally go after you. Which is lucky for your magic boy, isn't it?"He grins and leans back, stretching.

Bunker sits up, and looks across the darkened park. "It is, yes," he grins. "And thank you…"

The Joker… let it not be said that the Clown Prince cannot make an entrence.

Ever since the 'boon' from the Cait (Whose boons? Your boons?!) he's been feeling ever so slightly more chaotic. Not that anyone can tell. Also he's been feeling a bit glowy. Sort of a purple aura of power. People can definitely tell that. But anyone who mentions it gets shot. It got annoying after the twenty third time.

In any case there's no sense in wasting all this glorious chaos. He needs folks to introduce it to. And what better way to get folks together than to build a bonfire. We can all roast mashmellows, tell ghost stories, sing Kumaya: Insane Clown Remix (the precussion is done by an SKS).

Joker's choice of bonfire material is one of the maintenance sheds in the park… and most of the surrouding greenery which has been soaked in gasoline and then lit with a lighter. Some things never go out of style. If that doesn't get a bat, it'll at least get some boys in blue…

A blazing fire in a city park is not something that immediately signifies something is amiss to Booster Gold, but that is because in Future Gotham, that is the sort of thing you find in a city park. Skeets ends up having to cross-reference such an event with current data, and finally hazards, "…I don't think that's right, sir."

Booster ends up flying over the park, because it never hurts to check into the cause of a pyre. "I'm… yeah, I can't punch that out, Skeets. Fire's always tricky." Coming in for a landing at the edge of the blaze, Booster looks around for a means to quench this growing inferno. A water fountain is given thoughtful perusal, but he shakes his head and moves on.

Kate has been spending more time in Gotham lately, looking for Keith's other half. Time is of the essence, and New York can wait if it has to. Normally she's been dealing with small stuff. But when there's word of fires in the park? Well, that's worth looking into. It's certainly chaotic, after all.

Melinda May has NOT been spending more time in Gotham, thank goodness. However, when Kate mentioned she was returning there herself, she offered to go along. Sort of a returning the favor for the drive up to Westchester. So here she is, and already reminding herself of the Reasons why she hates Gotham. Reason # 33: Random fires.

Bunker simply looks up from where he is in the park, and the cowled boy forms up a set of purple bricks; hopping atop them he's borne aloft at speed towards the fire. "What the heck? It's too early for Halloween and there aren't any bonfires in the park anyway!" he says as he flies that direction.

"Bunker! Wai-" Keith calls after his team-mate, but the purple brick maker is already in motion.
"I can't rabbit hole." He finished, and shrugs. Ah well, a job in the park was in order. Keith takes off, running in the general direction of the smoke and fire-glare.

In the Clocktower, Oracle sits in front of her monitors and watches the goings ons in Gotham. The video feeds reflect off her glasses and in different windows, streams of data scroll up the screen. As the fire in the park is caught on the video feed, Oracle maximises that screen and automatically checks that emergency services are already despatched. At the same time, she starts looking for who The Bats have in the area. So far, only one person is registering in the area…. Keith. Sighing, this would not be her choice, Oracle opens a commslink to Keiths phone. "This is Oracle. Respond Keith."

A wave of pure Chaos goes out from the Joker and the fire blazes emerald green for a moment. It's not a small fire. Between grass, trees, and out buildings it's probably a good forty feet in diameter and getting larger. As the wave goes it Booster is caught in it, causing his tech to fritz and Skeet to sound like the Joker himself for a few moments. Good thing the wave was't more focused… well, yet. Keith himself may be able to feel the pure chaos being slung about.

"Hah! I knew it'd work!" Joker crows amid a crowd of clown masked, armed croonies. "Let's see how many other capes and cops show up. We're going to trip the light fantastic tonight!" With that he lets out a burst of gunfire at the unfortunate Booster.

Uh-oh. Booster has encountered this chaotic, tech-blitzing pulse before. He can feel his suit failing and rebooting, trying to get back on-line. The glossy look that usually surrounds him vanishes, and Skeets starts to have trouble remaining aloft. Booster grabs the little robot out of the air, turning as the Joker and his goons confront him. Working more on instinct than thought, he suddenly palms Skeets and throws him hard, sending him into a high, beautiful arc to get him out of harm's way just as the gunfire connects. The Man of Gold flings his other arm in front of his face as bullets strike him, tearing some of the shiny blue and gold fabric to reveal hints of microcircuitry underneath. He staggers back and hits the ground.

Kate stops short when she sees the degree of chaos they're coming up on, looking over to May for a moment. "So…I'd totally understand if you weren't in for this," she says to the agent with a wan smile. "I mean, Clint would probably be in, but saying Clint would do something isn't usually an indicator that it's a good idea." As she speaks, though, she's slinging her bow off of her shoulders, nocking an arrow in a smooth motion and searching for a vantage point.

Melinda May looks at the increasing chaos, sees THAT CLOWN in the middle of the mess, and starts pulling weapons from her jacket. She's left the kid gloves at home, and is brandishing those taser-tipped batons right off the bat. "Clint is the worst possible gauge of what is or is not a good idea. But I owe that bastard up there. Check in on your comm when you get a vantage point." She taps at the SHIELD issued comm in her own ear before starting forward cautiously.

"Whoa!" goe Bunker as the flames shoot up green. And grow much larger. He looks back and sees… no Keith! So he zips back and swoops down to get his teammate, and fly them both back to the arson area. "Can you see what started it?" he says, coming from the other side of the fire to The Joker. "And do you see any ponds around here?"

Finally on board of the Bunker express, Keith suddenly gets a strange look on his face. He feels the wave pass through him and his eyes, for a few seconds, retain a certain greenish glow to them.

On top of that, he feels great, like a shot of life has just come through to replenish his waning stores. Granted, there wasn't much to replenish, thanks to Gar last night, but still…

"No ponds in the immediacy. Bunker, can you create something to smother the fi- Hello?"

Keith grabs his phone as Oracle comes through. "Keith here, Oracle. There's one hell of a blaze here, can you see it from… wherever you are?"

There's gunfire, and Keith sees a suddenly not-so-glowing Booster Gold falling down in the distance. "Bunker, over there!" He points, "Tell me you saw that? I think someone we know is in trouble." It was hard to see. If Booster hadn't been caught int he chaos wave, he would have been glowing as usual. But this is night-time, and Keith can't use his feline eyes to see in the night anymore. Or at least, for now. So all he sees is someone falling. It's also rather hard to see because of the fire and the smoke.

"Of course I can see it" Oracles digitised voice even sounds dry with that comment. Through the video feeds, Oracle has already seen enough… she knows who's to blame. "It's The Joker, Keith. And you are the only one I have comms with right now. Emergency services are inbound but I doubt they're going to be much help. I can provide intel, tell me what you need."

Clowns are starting to fan out now from the blaze which is not good because all of them are armed and looking for something to use those bullets on. Joker is firmly focused on Booster. Another wave of chaos goes out from the Clown (turning the fire pink this time and all the trees briefly to cherry trees in bloom) as he empties one magazine on the out-of-time hero, loads another and dumps that as well. May and Kate find themselves targetted by gun toting clowns and and as for Keith and Bunker… the Joker broke out his gas-paintball guns and a few of the clown thugs are dispensing hallucinogen in their general direction like it's halloween candy.

Booster Gold is down, but not dead. There are flickers of golden light around him as he tries to engage his gear, but the next wave brings everything down once again. His suit's nanotech is scurrying to repair and reboot, drawing energy from his body until it can get his powercells online, and it has to be said: Booster has looked better. The bullets do not seem to be penetrating his flesh but from the expression on his face each impact is significant and painful, and he is struggling just to get to his knees, one arm outstretched with his hand towards the Joker. Whether this is a plea for him to stop or an attempt to grab at the Clown Prince is unclear.

Height and distance. The clowns have clips full of ammo, but Kate's strength is in accuracy, not volume of shots. And given the whole fire issue? A tree is just not a good option. As the clowns start firing, Kate runs at full speed for a utility building near the parking lot, a cinderblock structure that at least ought not to burn out from under her. She jumps to catch hold of the edge of the roof, yelping in pained surprise when one of the bullets clips her hip on a ricochet. "Really not cool," she mutters as she drags herself onto the roof.

Melinda May runs in the opposite direction from Kate, hoping to force the lackeys to split their attention. And it's only sheer dumb luck and one of those poured concrete park benches that spares her from taking some of that weapons fire. It's piss-poor cover, though, and she sure as hell can't stay there. But it at least gives her a moment to check on Kate over their comms. "Bishop. Status."

Bunker certainly isn't going to let someone fall, especially into or near a fire of this size. A cushion of sponge-like purple bricks splits off and zooms to catch the falling figure, but misses and Booster falls to the ground. Meanwhile…. "I can try," he says to Keith. "I've never made anything this big before, but I could try to directly smother it…" he says, stretching out his hand as a focus as a mat of psi-bricks form beside them and grows… and grows!

Then he sees the clowns, and the gas guns, and the fire blotter becomes a wall for the paintball pellets to explode harmlessly on. "The Joker!! Time to show him there's only room for ONE purple-clad costumed crazy person in this town!"

"…two…." Keith helpfully adds, Since there are two purple people greeters in the Titans. Even if one is currently 'retired' due to the fact that his Other Half is apparently giving crazy clowns powers of chaos magic.

"Oracle, the Joker's got some sort of gas pellets and…" Keith watches as the Joker riddles Booster with bullets, a knot in his stomach and his heart in his throat, "Oh my god… he's got my chaos powers…" He loses it for a few seconds, just staring as the chaos wave turns the fire pink.

"This is all my fault…"

Mays comms signals lights up on Oracles systems and her hands fly over the console. Tapping her own communicator, Oracle sends to May "Agent on the ground. This is Oracle. Please respond."

Keiths response gets a narrowing of eyes, tapping her communicator again "Gas pellets? Get out of the way, that's the hallucinogen that affected Robin."

And it's such a delightful hallucinogen too. LSD deriviatives mixed with a few special ingredients. Wonderful for giving people a new perspective on life. The Joker is about to unload a third clip on Booster when he spots May darting to cover. "Wait! Neo-Bat is mine!" He says, turning and shooting one of his own thugs for daring to threaten Melinda May before he can. THe nerve. Well… he is easily distracted. Especially in this state.

Spenning from Booster the Joker begins to move toward May, unleashing another pulse of magic at May, this one manifesting in a brillant spray of light that causes all of Bab's comms to temporarily scream 'IT'S PLAY TIME!!!' and also the bench to explode in a shower of confetti.

Several thugs focus in on Bunker. This is a mistake as Bunker is more than capable of taking care of himself and soon the hunters become the hunted. They scatter, the Purple Brick Man chases… they might… be a while.

Kate is undouobtedly better at the 'shooting things' schtick than any of Joker's thugs. Much better. In fact, some of them may be considering just getting up close and personal with her. With knives. And crow bars. They're certainly running at her like they mean to.

In the middle of all of it, a couple of guys with those gas guns have decided that Keith really, really, really needs to try this stuff. Not being immune like Joker is… they may be affected themselves, given the way they're spraying it about.

Booster Gold staggers to his feet, unsteady, bits of his suit's gleaming outer layer hanging in strips. The bared nanocircuitry sparkles with pinpoints of blue-white light as his systems start to self-repair so they can come back on line. The young man is bleeding, although not horrifically. Here and there where his suit was torn completely, the bared skin is abraded, and trickles of it come from his nose and one corner of his mouth. There is one piece of technology that he wears that is always remarkably stable, though—his flight ring. He does not bother waiting until all systems are functioning, he leaps and flies at the Joker, aiming for a tackle.

"Got some height," Kate answers May with a bit of a hiss between her teeth. "Also a scratch, but nothing too bad." She takes what cover she can behind the slight slant of the roof, crouching down and nocking an arrow. "And a visual on the shooters. Hey, Oracle," she says as the hacker breaks into their comms. "You've got Hawkeye and Agent May down here. Who's my priority target?" Aside from the thugs coming at her with knives. Thugs with knives are not kosher. She lowers her bow, readjusting so that she has three arrows held between her fingers, and all of them fitted with blunt tips to knock out their targets. "Night, boys!"

Melinda May moves to relocate again when there's a pause in the gunfire, and then then scream about playtime over her comm at the same time as the spray of confetti… Reason # 34. Damnit. She sets one of the taser-tipped batons in her hands to on then throws is back at the insane clown.

"Gar… goddamnit!" Not again. The last time Keith got the 'drug' treatment from the Joker, it did not go well for Gotham because of his powers. Now that he has no powers, it will most likely not go well for him. He needs cover- making a run for it, he dives and goes into several flips, diving into cover behind trees if he can, and if those pellets don't hit him before he makes it. He does have a gymnast's training, after all… but it is dark, he does not have cat eyes and can't see very well. Should he be able to reach cover safely, he's going to try to gather rocks or similar projectiles to throw at the thugs from his cover, hopefully to take them down before they manage to send him to Happyland.

LOG NOTE: Gas, not Gar

Oracle says, "@emit

Tapping back into the comms, Oracle replies "Hawkeye, Agent May, prime target is The Joker. Use extreme prejudice in taking him out." and watching the video feeds, shakes her head as Keith dives and tumbles.

"

The Joker cackles as he's hit by the shock rod. "Ooooh! Hurts so good. Come on, my Low Fat Bat Substitute! Give us another! Sure I can't convince you to wear a cape?" A blade spins into his hand as he drops his gun, rushing toward a confrontation with May.

Most of the thungs are in flight now. Keith's still being chased, but Kate downs her three nicely. The biggest danger other than the insane clown is the fire which is spreading rapidly. Sirens can be heard in the distance, above the Joker's mad cackling.

The Joker cackles as he's hit by the shock rod. "Ooooh! Hurts so good. Come on, my Low Fat Bat Substitute! Give us another! Sure I can't convince you to wear a cape?" A blade spins into his hand as he drops his gun, rushing toward a confrontation with May.

Most of the thungs are in flight now. Keith's still being chased, but Kate downs her three nicely. The biggest danger other than the insane clown is the fire which is spreading rapidly. Sirens can be heard in the distance, above the Joker's mad cackling.

Booster catches the distracted clown from behind but he just… won't… fall… over. Instead he turns, manic glee in his eye, grabs Booster's arm and lets the chaos flow…

Booster managed to keep most of his cries of pain on the quiet side when he was being shot. He feels weaker than a kitten at this point, and when the Joker clutches his arm, and the chaos energy flows through him, he lets out a keening cry. Things get a little weird after that. Okay, weirder.

Much like heat distortion, the air around Booster flickers and wavers, the chaos raging through the chronal energy that is usually dormant within him. Like a patchwork of illusions, images appear and vanish, making it seem at times that his costume is subtly or significantly different. Looking through the aura around him, even the view of the park seems to shift and change, sometimes intact, sometimes an unrefined landscape, sometimes showing glimpses of flying cars.

Melinda May stops and turns back the moment she notices the Clown being stopped by someone, and takes a second to take stock. Kate's doing well picking off the random thugs, that fire really is starting to spread but she has no way to deal with it right now, and the primary target appears pretty well distracted by whoever that is. She can't use a shrieker because of that other person, she'd really rather not wade in close, and… well. No other option.

Sighing and looking thoroughly disgusted with the entire mess, May tucks away her remaining taser-baton and pulls an odd-looking pistol which she promptly aims at the Joker's head and fires. No hero-like warning shouts, no aiming for non-lethal bodyparts, just a headshot. Roll 1d20 to hit.

GAME: Keith O'Neil has set the pose order to Joker/Booster/MelindaSheWillShootYou/Keef/Oracle

There's nothing worse than losing yourself. For Keith, it has been a constant nightmare for the past week or so. The thing about being an amalgam soul is that you eventually ger very good at teamwork because, in a way, you are your own team as well. All of that? Gone.

Chased and running like a coward, but everything is happening too fast and his consciousness is too little, too focused instead of being its old tripartite self. Nobody whispers advice in his mind, there is no experience from which to draw. And no nocturnal vision to warn him of something like a tree branch-

He trips and falls, but recovers quickly since that was something he remembers how to do from his training days at the dojo. Getting up quickly, his hand finds the branch as he looks up at the incoming thugs.

~I am tired of running.~ the thought explodes in his head, with anger. He would snarl, but his mouth is the wrong shape. His hand closes about the branch and he draws in a deep breath. He doesn't know if the pellets will affect him on impact by injecting something into his blood, or if he has to inhale… but at this point, it has come down to the wire and one way or the other he is going to get shot.

Might as well get shot while being awesome, then. Or at least trying to.

Keith lunges forward, breath held as he moves into several attack patterns from the Black Tiger Fist school, using the branch as an impromptu weapon with explosive strength.

Do not trifle with Keefs for they are redheaded and know how to deliver beatings.

Keith lays into the slightly delusional thugs with a tree branch. If the Joker were watching he'd probably find it amusing. Suffice it to say neither of them will be getting up any time soon, and if they have partners, they won't be in the mood for that either.

The Joker, shot in the face by dendrotoxin, rolls his eyes back in his head and falls limply in front of Booster. He's…

He's down!

Rather than press the attack, Booster takes a step backwards, one hand going to his head. The air around him still has that heat-distortion look, offering brief tantalizing glimpses into the past and future, sometimes for this timeline, and sometimes for others. Booster, however, still seems to be solidly -here-, unsteady, but still upright on his feet. The chaotic chronal distortion abruptly collapses, and the odd ghostly images vanish.

Melinda May rushes forward with the odd-looking pistol in hand to press one boot to the Joker's neck while aiming the weapon at his hideous face again. "Bastard's down," she tells Oracle tersely. As much as she'd like to look around and see that this other person is okay and that they're not all about to die in a fire, she is NOT taking her eyes off of the Clown.

Keith emerges from the brush, still trailing a rather beat-up-looking tree branch. There is blood on it- just a little. Keith never uses lethal force… although those two might end up taking their meals through a straw for a short time. About that, Keith gives exactly 0.0242 picofucks, which is precisely the amount of energy required to move one of Professor Snape's eyebrows precisely one tenth of an inch upwards.

"Booster?" Keith asks, sounding a little hoarse as he approaches the man in gold- he saw the Jetsons movie display, and he is obviously concerned. He makes a point of not looking at the downed Joker, because he is not quite sure he can resist the impulse to introduce the clown to his new friend, Woody the branch.

If it is at all possible, the digitised voice in Mays comm sounds grimly cold "Excellent work, Agent May. What do you want to do with him?" In the Clocktower, Oracles green eyes are flint hard and a grim smile touches her lips.

No does the question leave the communicator than the Joker leaps to his feet. "BOO!" He shouts to those around him. Mostly to May. He cackles madly. "What? Thought a little sleep gas would put old Mistah J down for the count? My blood is venom Low Fat Bat and Cat!" Booster doesn't get a rhyme. You can't rhyme gold with any of that.

The mad clown aims a kick at May's shin. His shoe has a metal plate under the toe which… yes… does mean he's wearing tap shoes. Don't ask. Then he takes off into the growing blaze which turns blue as another pulse of chaos washes out from him.

Booster holds one hand up as if to ward Keith off, and manages to say, "…temporally unstable…" The next pulse of chaos re-triggers that display of chronal energy, and for a moment it looks like he has a shiny but translucent pristine costume over his tattered one, although it has a sporty disco collar as part of the design. Stubbornly, he refocuses, the illusion fades, and he extends an arm to fire a few golden blasts at the fleeing Joker, the hardlight bolts ruffling the flames.

Melinda May stumbles back in surprise as the Joker suddenly gets up again and then of all things, kicks her in the shin. OW. "DAMNIT." She fires another round or two after him, but her aim is suitably ruined by the pain in her leg. "Oracle, he was FAKING."

Satisfied that Booster is not dying (only one person is allowed to be dying at one time, he rules), Keith whirls around as the Joker runs towards the flames. He also whirls Woody around, chasing the Joker as he flees and obviously aiming to hit him with the massive branch.

"You son of a bitch!" Keith shouts, his anger going up to eleven as he aims a brutal branch blow to the clown's back, "Stealing my powers! Doing this with them! Hold still, I am going to beat that grin out of you so hard you'll be shitting crowns for a week! You'll have to use a whoopie cushion as a colostomy bag! GET BACK HERE!" - that chaos wave which causes grief to so many others is actually like an injection of vitality to the young man. And right now he has a lot of anger to use that vitality up.

The Joker vanishes into the azure flames, but his voice does not. "Who's stealing? I'll own to any crime fair and square but this? This is a gift. And now let me give you one. The gift of being in two places at once. Top half, bottom half, you know how it goes…"

Something sails out of the fire to roll to a stop near Keith.

It's a grenade.

He's probably still close enough for someone to, you know, do something.

Booster Gold looks exhausted. Bloody, bruised, and exhausted. "Keith!" he shouts, and he takes a step forward. There are crackles and pops of blue energy sparking on his torn suit, which is looking decidedly non-shiny at the moment. Drawing himself to his full height and pulling his shoulders back, he takes a breath and gestures towards the grenade. A flickering translucent gold bubble forms around it, wavering and then getting stronger as he bullies his force field tech into working.

As one Roseanne Roseannadanna says- if it ain't one thing, it's anudda, you're either getting shortchanged at the butcher's, or a clown is trying to kill you.

And it's all his damned fault.

When Booster creates the bubble, he does the only thing he can do- dive for cover.

The grenade explodes. No confetti grenade this, that was a fragmentation grenade. It probably would have left bits of Keith all over the park. Fortunately the bubble contains it, but the Joker is loose to wreak more havoc in Gotham…

And, from a certain point of view…

It's all Keith's fault.


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