The Birdcage

<November 11, 2014>: Kate and Keith discuss the problems that anyone associated with Batman seems to have- and then plot a scheme of their own.

Titans' Monitor Womb

It's full of screens



  • None

Mood Music:

Damian's hands flow over the controls down in the Monitor Womb of the Titans Tower. He's in a particularly odd outfit today. A forest green, Adidas velour jumpsuit with running shoes and a bucket hat. Large aviator glasses hide his identity and his long, black curly hair spills over his shoulders. He has four days growth of a beard, modest given his age, and he's chewing gum.

He looks more like a DJ than he does a crime fighter.

The Riddler thing is all but forgotten. Not his town, not his thing anymore. He's all Titans, all the Time. When all that time isn't spent with Kate Bishop, that is. He's doing his best to search for the missing team member; digging in the places ones might not think to. Doing the grunt work others might not want to. Dotting the I's and crossing the T's.

"I figured I'd find you here," Vorpal's voice comes over Damian's seat. "We've got visitors, by the way," the Cheshire cat says as he enters the Monitor Womb. "Figured Kate wouldn't mind seeing the fanciness in action," he refers, of course, to the Monitor Womb. He notices Damian's… unique outfit, and frowns, puzzled. "You're not in your colors."

"Wow, Robin. Wow." Kate grins as she steps into the Womb, clearly more impressed by the young bat's dedication to the image than the shiny computers. At least at first. "I sort of found some interesting old stuff on a mission recently, thought he might appreciate…I clearly didn't realize the degree of appreciation."

"I look amazing," Damian states as he pours over data. Just streams and streams of data. Phone records. It's one of a thousand leads that will get him nowhere, but that doesn't mean he's not trying. "I have many different colors," he says to Vorpal. He hasn't elaborated on the fact that he hasn't been back to Gotham in a week.

Vorpal raises an eyebrow. "Right… er, Gar and I met with Booster and also with Iceman of the X-Men. Soon we'll find out whether or not we have enough people to mount a rescue operation and try to get Rain back. There's a lead I need to follow…"

He looks over at Kate, "Interesting old stuff? What do you mean, Kate?"

"An old warehouse, abandoned since the seventies or so, to judge by what we found in it," Kate chuckles as she looks over Damian's get up one more time before shaking her head. "Other things, too. I'm probably not supposed to talk about them yet, but once it goes public I'll tell you the whole thing," she promises with a grin. "What're you digging through for?" she asks, crossing her arms over the back of a chair and looking over the screen.

Damian twirls in his chair and folds one thin leg over the other as he strokes the beard-growth on his chin. "Intriguing, Kate. Way to tease us with your half information. As for what I'm looking for, it's one of our teammates. She's been kidnapped by a tuna warrior."

"Namor apparently thought Rain, our white witch, was Doctor Strange's girlfriend. Because apparently you don't need to check your facts when you're a king," Vorpal says, crossing his arms over his chest with a grumble.

"I only wish Wonder Girl were not gone. If we had someone of her caliber, challenging Namor wouldn't be an issue. But as it stands, there's nobody in the Titans who can stand up to that deep-sea bully. I mean… I could tell Raven to eat his soul. But it would probably be bad for Raven."

"I can't decide if teammate kidnapped by tuna warrior actually sounds weirder than your witch got kidnapped by a sea king who though she was someone else's girlfriend, or the other way around," Kate admits. "But deep underwater definitely seems like a pretty secure base, I'll give him that. Side note, anyone can stand up to a bully. It just doesn't always end well."

"I will find his weakness. And his kingdom will crumble. Or squirt. Like the tuna-smelling shellfish he is," Damian replies, sounding rather confident (of course). Of course he thinks he can stand up to Namor. He stood up to the Hulk, once, and the Hulk ran away.

Vorpal gives Damian a sidelong glance, but he doesn't say anything on the snarky side. Instead, he decides to add some casual conversation. "You know, Robin Two… there's something I've been meaning to mention as a matter of fact. Do you remember that remedy you sent me when I was dying?"

"Or we could point out he's got the wrong girl. Or ask why he thinks kidnapping women is…normal." Kate shakes her head slightly, though she falls silent as Vorpal brings up that question. Soooo not getting in the middle of that one.

"Of course. It was opium. It's commonly used as a pain reliever where I'm from. Extremely potent. I hope you didn't use too much at one time, or too often. It's highly addictive, of course. I'm glad you're feeling better." Damian twirls back in his chair, looks down at his typing keys, then back up at the screen like it aint no thang.

"Yeah… about that. Next time, a get well card will do the trick. Moving substances like that around in Gotham can get you jailed. Heck, if the apartment complex had been raided, right now we'd be trying to quell news agencies asking why a Titan was arrested on possession charges." He gives Kate a wry look. "Not the best PR…"

"Entirely legal in prescription form, though," Kate notes clinically. "Lord knows Clint's needed it enough. Not that he takes it. Which reminds me, I should make sure I check his medicine cabinet," she murmurs, pulling out her phone to write herself a note. "Don't need someone hitting the place up for a fix."

"I could get him some more," Damian says offhandedly to Kate. Apparently he knows all the places in Gotham. "Don't worry about it, Vorp. I got it for you because I was sure you were smart enough not to get caught. Desperate times call for desperate measures.:

"Well… I didn't know what it was at first," Keith O'Neil may have been a lot of things as a teenager and a young man, but being wise in the way of drugs was not one of them. "I was considering making a tea of it. If Gar had walked into the apartment five minutes later… Well." Vorpal smirks. He won't mind if someone laughs at that, really.

"I think we're all good on the opium supply," Kate assures Damian with a faint smirk, shaking her head. "But thank you for the offer. I'll keep that in mind the next time I need…I have no idea, but I'll keep it in mind. I don't think it's going to catch the merman, though." She nods back toward the screen, quirking a brow. "Do you think they get good reception underwater?"

"I will kill the merman," Damian responds, tapping away hard at the keys. "I just haven't figured out how yet." Damian stops, turns, and looks at Vorpal. He's fairly sure he's about to get a lecture, but just goes back to typing.

"You are not killing the merman," Vorpal says in a no-negotiation sort of tone. "Firstly, it would incite a diplomatic crisis, second, it'd get the surface world invaded by Atlanteans again, and thirdly Aquaman and his Queen would probably come and talk to us and then the whole place will smell of fish and it will take weeks to clean. We can focus on creating a distraction and swiping Rain out from under his nose. He's not particularly smart."

"I thought cats liked fish." Yeah, that's the part Kate picked up. She does at least fake a cough to cover her grin. "Besides, it's a bigger punishment to let him keep living knowing how stupid he is for trying to kidnap the wrong woman, like some sort of bad video game villain."

Damian stops typing, staring at the screen as if trying to gather his thoughts in a productive manner. Finally, he turns to Vorpal once more. "I haven't killed him not because I don't know how. But because I don't know how to do it and get away with it. Yet." He stands abruptly. "I need to eat. Kate, thank you for the outfit. I hope we hang out again soon."

"As long as you are with the Titans, Robin, you don't get away with it, because you don't do it. Those are our rules." Vorpal doesn't budge on that point, giving Damian a level gaze. "We are not murderers. We kick ass. Capisce?"

"He knows, Vorp," Kate says quietly, though it's all she offers thus far, nodding to Damian with a steady look. Trust, that she's determined to offer. Beyond that, she stays quiet, not wanting to interfere too much in the team's business.

Vorpal nods to Kate, and looks at Damian. "At some point we should talk, I'd be interested to hear where you obtained the moniker of Son of the Bat."

He'd repeat what Midnighter said, but he would just mangle the poor language if he tried, so instead he goes for the translation Midnighter gave him. "Be careful, let us know if you find something big on this. I'll follow up on one of the leads Drake gave me." That Drake being Bobby, of course.

"I obtained it on my own, just like with Robin. I find what I want. And I take it." Damian chuckles, but catches kate out of the corner of his eye behind his glasses and lets it drop. "Don't get your panties in a wad, Vorpal. Between the Titans and Kate, everything that matters to me at all is in this room. I'm not going to jeaopardize either." Damian nods, "Goodbye Kate."

"Bye, Robin," Kate says with a small smile, wiggling her fingers at the tracksuit clad hero before sliding into the vacated chair and looking back at Keith, fingers laced over her stomach.

Vorpal waits until Damian is out of the room before he raises his eyebrows. "… The other Robin let it slip by accident that this one had gotten… cut off, but I had no idea it was anywhere this bad. You know, the other Robin is not doing so well either?"

"You think that's bad, you ought to hear his opinions on the other Robin," Kate grimaces, propping her feet up on the other chair. "You've got to show him some trust, Keith. I mean it. If all anyone ever tells him is a bunch of preemptive warnings about what not to do, he's never going to believe that he can be good on his own. Or that it's worth it."

"It's a little hard when he talks about killing, you know, Katie. You know what our experience was … with that, before. I think I can be forgiven for being a little paranoid about that." Keith frowns. "It may be I am prejudiced against him. I'd like to be proven wrong… the other Robin is worrying me. I had a call from Oracle yesterday, says that he's going over the edge… wants me to stage an intervention."

The cheshire leans back in mid-air (or, rather, a construct that appears to catch him) "I am going to go on a wild guess here, but seeing that this Robin has gotten disowned somehow, and the other one is going absolutely nuts… Batman sucks at being a mentor."

"Right?" Kate exclaims. "I mean. To be fair, it's not like they don't know what they're doing, and Nightwing seemed like he probably wasn't entirely screwy. But come on. That is some crappy mentoring. Granted, not everyone can be Clint, but still." She crosses her arms over her chest, leaning back with a grimace. "I'm doing what I can to help him. He's got a lot of baggage, though. It just takes…some work, is all. What's wrong with captain awesome? He didn't seem like the sort to start spiraling."

Vorpal sighs, rubbing his forehead, "Oracle says he's taking risks. He was injured badly, again. Last time I talked to him, he felt pressured, he felt like Batman did not trust him and nobody trusted him to be a good Robin." He mutters after, "… I think he's just fine. But it's clear he's feeling alienated and that he can't connect with Batman anymore. I… I think that the Robin mantle is too small for him… but I don't think he wants to hear that he needs to strike out on his own, like Nightwing did."

"It's hard. Finding an identity. Especially when people think you're just a reflection of someone…bigger." Kate spins the chair slowly from side to side, pensive. "Maybe that's what I should do. Instead of SHIELD, instead of Titans. Maybe I could help the people who are trying to make the transition into really being heroes of their own. I mean, if you wanted, I could show him a few things. I mostly did this on my own."

"Someday, I will get you to join us, you know," Vorpal grins. "It'll be my life quest. But yes… if you think you can… by all means, I trust you."

He drops off the construct and lands on a crouch, "Which is why, actually… want to talk to you about something."

"I might need some help getting ahold of him," Kate notes. "But I can give it a try." At the last, she quirks a brow, crossing her legs as she shifts in the chair. "Sure, what did you want to talk about?"

The cheshire, stays in the crouch- ever since hanging out with Gar, he's come to embrace more of his feline nature when he is a cat. It's making moving around a lot easier over rooftops. "Well, I told you about how Gar went over to Faerie to get me that special box, right? The one that keeps my mom's stuff from vanishing? I was thinking. Gar doesn't… really have any mementos from his parents. Or from his adoptive parents. They're all dead…"

"That really seems to be a theme. My therapist would have something to say about that." Kate's smile flickers briefly, but then she sobers, more attentive. "On a more serious note, that sucks pretty hard," she admits, voice gentler. "I know having some of Mom's stuff around helps me keep her fresh in my mind. So what's your thought?"

Vorpal stands up so that he can lean over the monitor and type something onto the keyboard. "Well… I want to give something to Gar. He's given me so much and he has been the best boyfriend… I was thinking, well, what if there was something out there? Gar's mother was a famous actress before she was a superhero…"

And there is the image of the woman, smiling at the camera. "And, well, I found something…" a link about a collector in Los Angeles. A man known as Francesco DiDomenico, known for collecting memorabilia belonging to famous actresses, but Gar's mother seems to have been a favorite of his.

"And I found this."

The article shows the man holding up a necklace with one single diamond, housed in an exquisite silver pendant in the shape of a bird. The headline informs Kate that the man, about ten years ago, purchased the necklace in a private auction. The necklace was worn by Gar's mother for several movies, and it was auctioned off by the studio after her death.

"… this is the part where you tell me I'm crazy."

"Why?" Kate looks up at the screen, smile crooked. "I mean. Aside from the fact that the jewelry seems a little feminine for Gar, and maybe not his style, but whatever you guys like to wear is cool with me." She winks, teasing. "I'm guessing that guy's not going to want to let it go just for sentiment, but if you want me to spot you the cash, I will absolutely do that."

"Well… that can be a possibility. I was thinking maybe the two of us could take a Hollywood trip?" He gives Kate a grin, "Show up as potential buyers, case him a little, see what he might go for that we could get? He's into famous people. I could offer… somethingt of Gar's. You know, her step-son. He keeps some of the old uniforms from whe he was in that team. I found two of them in one of his boxes when I was unpacking… probably for sentimental reasons. I could offer on of them to him. Or something!"

"You're good at research and stuff, maybe you can also sniff him out… the more we know about him, the more tools we have to make him an offer he might like." The cheshire grins at Kate. "What do you say? You and me, on a California adventure? I want that necklace for Gar's christmas present. He deserves it… whaddaya say?"

"Sure, I'm in," Kate laughs, grin flashing. "I mean, I'm supposed to do some sort of quest with Fenris, and I was going to bring Robin the unhappy, see if it knocks him out of some of that funk. And I think I can slip in some therapy for captain awesome, too. But I'm not going to say no to a trip to the west coast."

Vorpal grins, "Cool! 'cause I've never been there! I bet… I bet we could stop by the walk of fame and take a picture of her star, you know? To go with the necklace. But!" he holds up a finger, "Gar. Must. Not. Know. We need to come up with an excuse for this trip that won't get him to suspect…"

"I'm taking you to help me go shopping, of course," Kate waves a hand dismissively. "There's a benefit thing, I'm going to need a dress. And everyone here will have dresses they get in New York. Wouldn't want to double up on things, right?"

Vorpal laughs, "See… I'll never get what it's like to live like that. I mean, having all that at your disposal."

He pauses and looks around. "I am saying that while living in a castle and dating Gar…"

Kate taps a finger to her nose. "It's stupid most of the time, honestly," she shakes her head. "There's a lot of stupid. But there's so much opportunity, too. So many chances to help. So many things that you can do when you have the resources to do them. It's a balance. I try to err on the side of doing things for other people."

"I guess… so… when is a good time for you? I mean, date-wise." The cheshire says, "Gar and I have… um, a mission on Saturday, but I think we should be free after Sunday, if we make it back alive," he grins.

"Like I schedule things," Kate smirks, leaning back comfortably. Vorpal may be part cat, but Kate has her own feline traits, not the least of which is independence. "Call me when you're ready to go, we'll make it happen."

"Sounds good to me," Vorpal grins and thumbs over his shoulder, "Hey, I made tiramisu, want some?… I was thinking… a road trip would be fun… but flying'd be more practical, woudln't it?"

"Probably," Kate admits, kicking up out of the chair. "Unless you wanted to make a major trip out of it and take the train. I keep meaning to do that one of these days…"

Vorpal ponders for a second, and hmmms. "… with sleeping cars and all of that?"

"It seems cool, right? Probably even longer than a road trip, but some day, I think it would be cool," Kate shrugs as she heads for the door. "My luck, I'll get to do it some day when Clint ropes me into guarding something on a train and I won't even get to enjoy the sleeper car."

"We could do a train! We just can't be gone for too long or else Gar will suspect I'm up to something. Hard to put one over him, really." Vorpal grins and follows Kate, "You'll like this Tiramisu. Mom's recipe. Fabuous every time."

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