Life Is Not A Video Game

December 5, 2014: Batwing runs across the Midnighter.

North Point, Gotham City



Mood Music:

Unsurprisingly, run down coastal areas with abandoned docks are much in demand to the criminals who make a living smuggling. It's almost guaranteed that Gotham's night will see a shipment of something, whether it's guns, drugs or people. Tonight? The boat moored to the dock was carrying drugs. The drugs are still there, the crew not quite, all four laying sprawled in pools of blood across the deck where they happened to fall. Midnighter's standing on deck, one foot on the rail of the ship and smoking a cigarette as he quickly flips through a wad of bills.

It's difficult to say when he arrived, certainly after the bloodshed went down. But Batwing is standing behind Midnighter, fists balled, eyes glowing a white-blue in the dark, right along with the glowing bat symbol on his chest. "None of this was necessary. There were other ways to handle these people, to show them real justice. But this…" He motions an arm over to the bodies. "This is just a slaughter."

"Don't even think about it." Midnighter says without turning or stopping his counting. "Necessary? No. I could have let them continue to poison people - kids - with their drugs, ruining their lives and getting rich off other's pain and suffering." Pause. "Well, when I put it that way, I guess it was kind of necessary since even if they were arrested, some slick attorney will have them back on the street in less than a day then pay off a cop to lose the evidence or a judge to throw the case out."

"When the cops don't work, then you make them understand that these are not their streets to ruin. You make them understand that they can't just do whatever they want. But we do not kill them." Batwing suddenly pulls out a pair of cuffs with some small bat-like wing designs sticking from the sides. "I'm dropping you off with the police. I can't let you go."

Midnighter puts the bills in a pocket then turns to grin at Batwing. "You're amusing. You're also doomed to fail so just put your toys away before I have to hurt you. Also? I'm certain the ones still alive when understand when their drugs don't arrive. Speaking of which, go ahead and call the cops to pick them up. Maybe some of the dirty ones will overdose once they make it disappear and save me some effort."

"I've already called the cops." Batwing slips the cuffs back into his belt, then crouches down into a boxing formation, fists up. "I don't want to have to do this, but if you're not coming on your own, I'll drag you to the police station myself. So what's it gonna be?"

Reaching up, Midnighter takes a drag on the cigarette then takes it and tosses it into the water as he exhales a cloud of smoke. "Just a minute…" He starts patting his pockets till he reaches into one and pulls out a simple white card which he offers to Batwing. It reads: 'I know what special abilities you have. I can see the enhancements. I can detect the increased electrical activity in your brain. I know what moves you're preparing to make. I've fought our fight already in my head a million different ways. I can hit you without you even seeing me.' Then it skips a line and ends with 'Your move.'

"This is kind of like that one part of Afro Samurai, then. Where he fights the robot version of himself." Batwing considers this, raising a hand to rub his chin as he releases his stance. "I'm not a zen master, so I don't know how to just let go of my training." Then his other hand grabs something from his belt, and suddenly tosses a flashbang to the ground, shielding his own eyes. "Even if you saw that coming, what do you plan to do about it?!"

There's a tap on Batwing's shoulder. "Get behind you where it won't bother me." Midnighter says, having started to move even as the flashbang was released and the other man was shielding his eyes. "I'm not really interested in fighting you. I don't do this to prove anything and I'm sure you mean well. Whoever you are. Got a name?"

"Batwing. And I don't want to fight either, but I can't just let someone kill people and then just let them go." After his sentence, Batwing immediately tries to swing his elbow back, attempting to get a gauge on this man's observation skills. "I bet Batman can take you, and if he can, that means there's a secret to it."

Midnighter leans back enough that the elbow misses him. "You didn't let me kill anyone." he points out. "And you don't have any say in whether I go or not." And then he laughs. "Seriously? You're declaring yourself the Batman's equal? That if you just knew how he could beat me, then you could too? Well, maybe you are since he and I have never met."

"I'm no where near Batman's equal, but you probably aren't either. So if I knew how he could beat you, I probably could too." Batwing explains, then just starts rapidly thrusting punches as the man's face. "Come on, this isn't DBZ, there's no way you can know everything I'm gonna do!"

"There are over three thousand different ways of fighting you that lead to my winning." Midnighter explains, moving to avoid each blow except the one that turns out to be the last since he catches Batwing's fist in his hand. "Your brainwaves change when you initiate a course of action. So does your breathing and your heart rate. You telegraph each blow in more ways than I have the patience to explain."

"This is ridiculous." Batwing says as he thrusts a kick forward to try and force a release of his fist. "I need to regroup, this is way over my head." he admits, apparently not the sort of bat who keeps hammering a nail into a hole that won't budge. "But I'm definitely going to find you, and find a way to take you in. You can guarantee that."

Midnighter catches the leg without releasing the fist. "That looks very uncomfortable." he notes. "This isn't some kind of audition is it? You're not looking for a mentor to teach you?" He pushes both fist and leg back, releasing them as he does so. "Did you double space your resume?"

Batwing goes stumbling back, falling right on his butt before he rolls backward, crouched on his foot and knee. "I don't need a murderer for a mentor! The cops are coming, get out of here before you get anyone else hurt! Get used to having the upper hand now, next time it'll be all me!"

"Technically, since you called the police, you'd be the one getting them hurt." Midnighter notes. "But since I don't want to hurt cops trying to do their job, I'll make their job easier tonight." Despite his words, he doesn't move and instead looks Batwing over. "Well, you have guts. I'll give you that. Once that idealism of yours gets run over a few times by reality, you might be worth working with."

"Don't count on it. Short-sightedness isn't attractive in a partner." Batwing jumps back onto the rail, staring down at him. "This place is being watched, so don't get any ideas. And you'll definitely be seeing me again." he says before jumping into the air, then pulls out a grappling hook to lift himself up to a nearby warehouse.

Midnighter shakes his head as he watches Batwing leave. Kids today. He looks around again at the ship then tosses the pack of cigarettes down onto the body he took them from. Filthy habit, always need to wash the odor out of his leathers afterward. Deciding everything's been taken care of here, he leaves as well though he'll be nearby to make sure no one comes to take the drugs before the cops do.

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