After The Dreaming

Summary:
November 15, 2014: Babs, Luke and Vorpal catch up in the Coffee Shop.

Gotham Cafe

A quiet, mostly clean twenty four hour cafe in Gotham


Characters

NPCs

  • None

Mood Music:


After her last meeting with Luke, Babs has a few more questions regarding the facilities he needs and the hours he would want access. Babs has a delicate job to do, balancing the fact that Luke actually stole the suit with the fact she thinks, with training, he'll make a pretty decent Batwing… but that's Oracles job to deal with Batman and get him to agree to what she's thinking.

Babs has called Luke and asked him to meet her at the same coffee shop at 10.30am. She's made it abundantly clear this is a business meeting, not a social outing.

Babs is sitting at her usual table, a mug of coffee by her elbow and plate with something sugary and cakey by the other. Her tablet is in front of her and, by the small frown on her brow and the fact that she's tapping at the screen, she's concentrating and writing something… not just reading her facebook feed or the latest comic or something.

Last night was hell. With Fenris and strange people showing up in his dream, plus other strange people trying to eat his dream, it had been a full night. He didn't really get a good sleep afterwards, and he ended up oversleeping. By the time he was awake, Gar was already in the Library working on the training plans for the Titans.

He started his patrol an hour ago, but he's still having problems waking up, and zooming through the skies through rabbit holes can be risky if you aren't fully awake. So, once he arrives in Gotham (past his favorite landmark, the clocktower), the Cheshire cat touches down and heads for the cozy cafe nearby, to get something to fuel him.

A croissant and an extremely charged cup of coffee acquired, he sits down at a table not far from Barbara's. He hasn't bothered to change into his human guise, so he sits there in his uniform (winter variant, at least) and starts to worship his cup of coffee. Oh Caffeine, who art in Colombia, hallowed be thy boost…

When Luke arrives, he offers Babs a wave and goes to order a cup of lemon tea first. Then he walks back and sits across from her, smiling. "Hey. How are things today? Any updates?" he asks, keeping it professional for this particular meeting. He's even wearing that blue blazer over his black t-shirt.

Looking up at Lukes voice, Babs closes her tablet automatically and places in face down. Smiling at him "I'm fine." In truth, she looks a little tired, like she didn't sleep well. "Maybe, I need to sort out a few more details but I think I have somewhere for you to do the work. I'm sorry to jump right in, but what hours will you need access to the facility?"

Now she's focussing on the real world, and not the digital datastreams that were on her tablet, Babs picks up her coffee cup and drinks. Glancing round the Cafe, her eyes fall on Vorpal, a frown crosses her brow and then a smile. She stares at the Cheshire… waiting for him to look at her.

And nodding off once… twice…. no, no falling asleep!

Normally people who fall asleep in coffeeshops get weird stares. Vorpal, being an anthropomorphic cheshire cat of the purple persuasion and a rather intimidating build, tends to get weird stares all the time, so he's used to it. Still, this isn't working- he's supposed to be here to wake up, not curl up with coffee. Coffee, what betrayal is this?

He reaches for his cup and downs some more of it and then stretches. His winter uniform is similar to his summer one, except that instead of being cut like a singlet, it covers everyting with only his head and his tail exposed. Maye that was contributing to the problem as well- his suit was warm, it was meant to keep him warm (cheshires didn't get winter coats, they were technically not real), so in a nice, warm, cozy cafe…

He yawns. He covers his mouth and turns away as he yawns, and then notices someone is staring. Well, that's not unusua-

Wait. That woman… she looks familiar. Vorpal pauses for a few seconds, staring back at her and mouthing the words 'no way'…

"Well, right now my days are spent training, doing research, and sleeping. And nights are… well, you know. So I think some time in the early afternoon would be best. Though…" Luke looks around, then leans in. "I might need to change schedule at the last minute some days. I've got an entire family to deal with, you know how it is. And sometimes my mother really wants to get the whole family together out of the blue."

He shakes his head, smiling fondly at that. Then he looks back in the direction that Babs is staring in, then turns to stare back at her, raising an eyebrow. That sure is a cheshire cat.

A small smile curls Babs lips as the Cheshire recognises her and she gives a small nod 'yes way'. Looking at Luke, she says quietly "This is going to sound weird, but I saw the Cheshire in a dream last night… it was very real, this is too much of a coincidence." and with a small gesture, indicating an empty chair she invites the Cheshire to join them.

Luke gets her attention again "Early afternoon for several hours, that's good and yes, I understand family. Mines not as big as yours sounds but I often get the 'come to dinner tonight, no questions' request as well. I just wanted to make sure that you had the access, without disruption, when you needed it." Still sipping her coffee, her eyes flick occassionally to the Cheshire.

Gathering up his coffee and croissant, Vorpal abandons his seat and heads over to where Luke and -Leia- Barbara are sitting. With a puzzled look he looks from one to the other and then says, "This is going to sound weird, but you are the girl of my dreams," he says as he takes the offered seat after he has deposited his food items. He looks at Luke, and then smirks, "You weren't in my dream, but consider it a standing invitation now that people seem to have started touring through my skull." Then he looks back to Barbara. Yep. Definitely the woman from his dream.

"Considering the kind of stuff I need, it's unbelievable thinking you've just got a place like that set up somewhere. I hope to see you there, I really want to see what you think of my ideas. And I want you to see how I work." Luke says with quite a bit of enthusiasm, then looks from Vorpal to Barbara again, eyes a little wide with sock at the opening line. "Wow, sitting right here." he says almost in a joking manner, before listening to the rest.

"I'm interested in what you're doing, I'll try to be there for some of it." Babs murmurs to Luke with a smile. It's not that she's not excited but she has seen the Cheshire approach.

Offeriing a small smile, Babs gives a soft laugh at the Cheshires opening gambit. "And I could say you're the man of mine… but that might give the wrong impression hmmmmm? I'm Babs, Babs Gordon and this is my colleague, Luke Fox." Babs holds out her hand to Vorpal. Luke gets a look "Play nicely, Luke." Babs chides in good humour.

Vorpal grins and shakes Barbara's hand. "Babs, nice to meet you, Babs Gordon," he says, and then holds out a hand to Luke. "I'm Vorpal. Or Keith. I'm with the Titans. "It is nice to meet you, foxy one."

A pause. "I meant that as in cunning. I need more caffeine. Sorry. Saying the wrong thing is sort of my secondary superpower."

Luke gives Vorpal a firm shake, nodding after a brief raise of his eyebrow at Vorpal's choice of words. "Nice to meet you too. So, uh, what's all this about dreams?" he asks, looking completely and utterly lost about, well, everything. "And what's that costume for?"

Babs takes a few moments to just enjoy her coffee, her eyes moving between Luke and Vorpal. "Well… I had a dream last night, a waking dream if you like. I was being chased by something quite evil and" Babs frowns "so was Vorpal here… We were helped by a wolf but each of us had to fight the evil ourselves." Babs flushes slightly, that doesn't happen often "That probably sounds quite ridiculous, doesn't it? And yet … we both remember the same thing."

Placing her coffee cup on the table, Babs picks at her cakey thing before looking at Vorpal "Is that how you recall it?"

"That's pretty much how it went," Vorpal answers, taking a bite out of his croissant. "I didn't get to see what was going on with yours, to be honest. The wolf was… well, someone I've known for a little while. Runs in mythological circles."

He looks at Luke and raises an eyebrow. "… well, I fight crime in it. And it keeps me warm for the upcoming winter."

"I don't get it. I mean… maybe I just don't get psychic stuff. This just sounds insane. I mean, not that you're insane or anything, but shared dreams?" Luke throws his hands up, shaking his head in utter disbelief. "Maybe I need to open my mind a little more. It's difficult to go from hard science to psychic stuff."

Babs looks at Luke with understanding "Tell me about it." she murmurs. "This is the second time it's happened to me, I guess I'm getting used to it." Babs shrugs. "You don't need to believe it, Luke. One day it might just happen to you and then you can have your existential breakdown." The comment is accompanied by a small smile.

Vorpal and Luke get Babs attention and the Wolf is deliberately not mentioned "Titans? Oh yes, that group that did something with a senator recently… Did you read that in the papers or online, Luke?"

The cheshire looks at Luke with an amused expression. "You've got an upright cheshire cat clad in spandex sitting at your table, and you need to open your mind more?" He smirks and snaps his fingers. Suddenly, there is a little circus procession dancing around on the table. They're all about three inches high (except the elephant, who is eight), little people dancing around the coffee table, weaving around the cups and such.

"Maybe this will help expand your horizons a bit," he grins after creating the illusion. And then he looks at Babs. "Wait… this is the second time?"

"Oh yeah, I read about that in my daily news crunch, but I didn't see any pictures. Makes things go faster when I'm not actively investigating something." Luke wraps his hands around his tea, finally taking a nice, long sip. The way his body is moving slightly might indicate that he's anxiously tapping his foot. "I can look at that lab this afternoon?" he asks, obviously excited.

Then, suddenly a tiny circus procession, and he releases his coffee to go falling backward in his chair, legs up in the air. "Whoa, ow, what in the world was that?!"

Babs blinks as the procession appears on the table and as Luke falls she gasps "Luke! You have to learn to relax. Particularly with the work you want to be doing… Do you need help…" Babs is shocked and amused at the same time. Still picking at her cake, Babs looks at Vorpal "Uh yes, twice now…"

It is very hard to keep from grinning, for Vorpal. However, he manages to do so this time, snapping his fingers to dispel the illusion.

"Boy, did I call that wrong. I guess you're a little more tightly-wound than I thought… you okay down there? If I had known you were going to take a nap, I would've created a pillow for you…"

A look at Barbara, "What was your first time about?"

"I'm a relaxed dude until little men start marching on the table out of no where!" Luke rolls back without much effort, until he's on one knee and pushing himself up. He brushes his blazer off and lifts the chair upright again, taking his seat, then sighing. He can't help but stare at Babs for a moment, adding, "I'm usually a lot more graceful than that."

== Batling Training Needed ==

Well it looks like Oracle has some training to do with the young man. If a procession of little men marching around the table will do that, what happens when Harley or The Joker (or these days, worse) just appears?

"It's alright Luke, relax, I believe you." The redhead gives Luke a wry smile before drinking again. She really has no wish to discomfit the young man any further and she believes he can be graceful. "Perhaps Vorpal, some warning next time?" a raised eyebrow accompanies the question.

The Cheshire than gets a blink "My first time? That's an awfully personal question for new acquaintances don't you think?" with a cheeky grin. Taking some time for that to sink in and to enjoy her coffee… Babs shrugs as she replies "I didn't dream that time, I know what I'll dream if I do… I ended up helping someone fight their nightmare instead."

Now it is Vorpal's turn to look uncomfortable. "… I didn't mean it like that…" Sip. Coffee. Munch croissant. Do not look at the woman directly.

"Helped someone? Did… did Fenris drag you there?" Wild guess, but the wolf seemed familiar with the woman when they ran into his dream. Was she some sort of Dream Fighter?

"Well as much as I'd love to hear about Babs' first time, that's my cue to leave!" Luke starts to stand after finishing his tea, offering the two of them a polite nod. "I have some intense math to do before this afternoon, for the project. Well, to finish. Making revisions and improvements. So I'll see you around, and give you a call when I show up?"

Babs frowns as Luke stands up… "Um, you don't have to leave. I'm sorry if I made you uncomfortable." she's utterly sincere. "But if it's a time thing, that's ok. Give me a call before turning up, that would be a good thing and I'll be in touch, hopefully today about the facility." Babs waves as Luke walks away.

Vorpal gets a bit of a funny look "The Wolf" Babs says pointedly "showed up, told me where I was, was dangerous and took me to the others nightmare… I don't think he expected me where he found me." she shrugs and takes another sip of her coffee.

"Sorry about the chair thing—" Vorpal says meekly to Luke, and then he looks at Babs. "Um… whose nightmare was it? I mean, what sort? And why are you running around fighting nightmares? Are you some sort of dream superhero?"

The cake isn't finished so Babs turns her attention to that, eating some before looking back to Vorpal "Not everyone is a superhero, you know. Some of us are IT Security Specialists, confined to wheelchairs. No, I'm not a dream superhero." She smiles at that "Whose dream it was is not for me to share. Just as, I won't be sharing who I dreamt with last night." Her eyebrow quirks at Vorpal in a pointed message. "Are you enjoying your coffee and croissant?"

"Shut up, it's none of your business, got it," Vorpal grins and wolfs down the croissant. "It was delicious. So you do security? You work for one of the big companies 'round here?"

He starts working on his coffee, there is a patrol to start, after all. "What I do is pretty self-explanatory."

Babs blinks "Uh, not quite what I meant. I keep peoples secrets… it's what I do and habits die hard." she looks apologetic "IT Security, I freelance. Help businesses protect themselves from malicious attempts, write a bit of code, dabble." Vorpals explaination of what he does gets a grin "Yes it is. It was nice to see you getting some good press recently. What happened at the Nightclub?" Her coffee and cake are forgotten.

Thank goodness he is purple, so he can't blush. Coffee gulp. "… I had the intention of not getting drunk. I asked for a herbal tea mix. Apparently the damned thing had cat-mint in it."

Glugglugglug, "Stupid hipster drinks. Gar is not letting me live it down. I woke up this morning with him just waiting to tell me what else I did that fortunately didn't make it to the blogs." He shakes his head. "From now on I'm ordering water or coffee."

"Oh dear, I'm so sorry…" and Babs is. "I'm sure there's some way to detect cat-mint in drinks, just like the ones that detect other drugs. Have you considered looking into it?"

"Gar, he's a fellow Titan member isn't he? Oh yes, the green fellow. I hope he wasn't too angry about it all." Babs herself starts drinking her coffee. The cake gets a look, but is left.

"I'm not sure… it's not worth the effort, really, I just need to order soda from now on, or something like that." He's making good time on his coffee, draining it.

"Garfield Logan, ex-Beast Boy, goes by Chageling nowadays…" He doesn't make eye contact when he says his nextg bit. "No… some guys might probably get mad that their boyfriend got splashed across the gossip sites dancing in his underwear, but Gar didn't get mad. At least, I don't think he is mad…" he ponders. He's heard about significant others doing the 'you must read my mind' thing. Could Gar be angry and not show it? It seemed hard to believe- it wasn't Gar's style.

"Maybe I should ask him. Just in case." Relationships don't come with a manual, and they're extra scary when you're a fist timer.

"If he hasn't said anything, then he probably isn't. But asking couldn't hurt either…. Not that I would really know from experience" Babs shrugs and throws a smile to Vorpal "You seem in a slight hurry, heading out to do the super hero thing?"

"If you can call it that, yeah… I've got Gotham on my sights this weekend. I like to rotate cities to keep things fresh." That, and Gotham was one of those cities that required recovery time. "Besides, the Bats don't like outside people poking their noses on their city, so I try to keep my patrols to the daytime when they're not as active." Or when they do not seem as active.

He finishes his coffee and hmmms, relishing in the warmth. "It's nice to meet you, Babs Gordon. Sorry I interrupted your meeting with your colleague… I really didn't mean to scare him like that."

Babs smiles at Vorpal. "Seems like a good plan to me. Luke will be ok, it does the young good to have surprises occassionally." Babs finishes her coffee as well, picks up her tablet and starts to move to the door. "It's a pleasure to meet you in the flesh as well, and not in a dream, Vorpal. Good hunting."


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