Serendipitous Meetings

Summary:
December 21, 2014: After the Titans' party, the titans run into Iceman again- and Meggan, and someone in need of a favor.

New York

Yay


Characters

NPCs
*Riana


Mood Music:
[*<http://insert.video.or.music.link.here>]


East Side Manhattten is, like most parts of Manhattan, slowly gentrifying. That does not, however, mean that these are all nice places. Even in the shadow of the diplomatic quarter, one can find rough patches if one looks hard enough. Or perhaps it should be 'because of the diplomatic quarter.' Diplomacy has long involved 'back channel' communications some of which rely on methods of getting things and people around that are less than official. Or even legal.

Bobby Drake had business out this way but it's concluded and now he's stopped for a bit of coffee. The cold doesn't bother him but he does like to crowd watch and even now in the later evening there's still a fair number of people passing to and fro doing Christmas shopping. That was when someone dropped a napkin at his table. He looked up but couldn't figure out who it was. When he glanced back down, though he noticed the writing on the napkin. "Back alley two blocks up, 8:30 pm. By the dumpster." That's just about twenty minutes from now. Odd thing to be dropped, to be sure.

"So, the guy who asked me to help was working with the European Union zoo commission. They're supposed to have an office around here, and I'm just hoping they've got someone in for the early shift," Gar says. He's wearing something that looks like ordinary people clothing… a pea coat, pants, a regular shirt, even a hat. Porkpie, of course. If he wasn't green it would be just any moderately stylish New Yorker.

"Right," Keith nods. He's wearing a black overcoat over his usual clothes- the green turtleneck and black slacks. Green goes well with red, and it's seasonally-appropriate. "The sooner we get some more info on what's going on, the better. What did Zatanna say about you? Did you have any 'tags' on, hon?" he asks Gar, hands in his trench pockets as he walks next to Gar.

Meggan Puceanu is walking around barefoot. That isn't super obvious because she does have a cute little coat on, as well as jolly red earmuffs, fun but not necesary. She is toting several bags from sundry shops and practically skipping on down the walk, as if at any moment she could turn and throw her hat in the air, leading to a freeze frame and then a sit com.

Or, as it turns out, coffee. She hip-checks open the door, possibly breezing past Gar and Keith on her way to fetch coffee, putting her bags down at an unoccupied two-seater as she passes it.

Bobby looks up seeing Keith and Gar. And… well he doesn't recognize Meggan but then he hasn't been about a whole lot, really. Just work and the Nest. "Hey you two." He seems to be staring at a napkin. "Fancy seeing you down in the diplomatic quarter. I trust everything's alright?"

"Wait, didn't we just do lunch?" Gar says as he sees Bobby inside. He holds the door as the girl with the bags and the "we can do it" attitude passes through, and nudges Keith. "Order me a peppermint chocolate mocha, please?"

"Sure, hon," Keith nods, "Hey Bobby! Funny seeing you twice in a row like that. You guys get me a seat, be right back." He takes off his gloves and heads over to the counter, taking note of the lady. She has the kind of face you remember, and the hair-

He runs his hand through the unruly mess that is his own copper hair. Man, he'd kill for hair like that. He moves on to place his order and Gar's.

Meggan is also getting a peppermint chocolate mocha, try to contain your surprise. When Keith comes up, she smiles at him as she takes off her ear muffs, putting them into a coat pocket. She looks over her shoulder -

Then has to glance again at Gar. She seems surprised, but /only/ surprised. To Keith she says, "Happy Christmas! I do terribly hate to intrude, but could I ask you to introduce me to your friend? I'm Meggan, by the way!" She offers a hand along with a beaming smile. (No gloves, manicure good)

Bobby hears the 'Happy Christmas'. It's impossible not to in the narrow confines of the coffee house. He nods in answer to Gar's question, they had indeed just done lunch, and now here they are again. The ice nerd isn't sure he believes in fate or coincidence but certainly something is at work here. "She seems rather excited to meet you." He murmurs to the Green one.

"Oh?" Gar looks closer at the girl. Huh. She's familiar looking, but he's not sure why. Maybe he'll find out when Keith brings her back with the coffees.

"So what's the note? Fan mail from some flounder?"

Keith looks at Meggan for a second as he places Gar's order and his. "Oh? Happy… Christmas to you too, miss. I'm Keith."

He makes sure to grab a packet of madeleines as well. "Pleased to meet you, Meggan. You want to meet my friend- consider it done."

Maybe she was a fan? Gar had told him his approach to his fans, so he figured he wouldn't mind an introduction. Grabbing the java, he nods at Meggan with a 'follow me' gesture and takes her to the table.

"Hey guys. This is is Meggan… Meggan, this is my friend Bobby, and this is Gar," he says, giving a wink to the green one. "She very much wanted to meet you. Here's your order, by the way," he adds, extending the hand with Gar's coffee to him.

"Not a fan no." Bobby murmurs before Keith comes over, sliding the napkin over so the Green One can read. He looks up as Keith brings over and introduces Meggan. Still not familiar but it's not like the Iceman would necessarily know. For all he can tell right at the moment, she's just a fan… who has no shoes, so clearly the cold doesn't bother her anyway.

"Thanks, Keith," Gar says, taking the peppermint wonderfulness. "Hi, Meggan. I'm Gar Logan, still-surviving child actor and sometimes superhero. I go by Changeling, because none of the other names was any good. Good to meet you."

He glances at the note, then at Bobby.

"Wait, you have a back-alley assignation?"

Meggan gets her drink and walks over, her eyes wide. She smiles at Bobby as well, of course, but Gar is more of the stand-out fellow, isn't he. She lingers for a moment, glancing at Bobby for another tiny fraction of a second, but then her gaze rests upon Gar.

Her lower lip quivers.

When she speaks it is with heartfelt meaning. You would think she was addressing the creator of the vaccine that saved her child. "Gar Logan… I don't - I can't even tell you -" Her face tightens.

And she draws in a deep breath, forces it out, and continues in a blur, her eyes glistening with the promise of tears. "Lieutenant Ferin was /tremendously/ important to me when I was growing up. I didn't really understand, things, but I think on some level I knew and the only possible place that I could see it was on 2020 and of course Rene on Deep Space Nine as well, but of course you were very different CHARACTERS, so seeing TWO of you - I mean, I was so much more able to identify with Ferin —"

Meggan seems overwrought for another two seconds. "May I sit down?" she says, voice suddenly dipping super small. "I -"

She blinks several times, and looks at Bobby with renewed curiosity.

Bobby nearly mishears that as assassination. Fortunately nerdiness kicks in and, ah yes. Assignation. That's different. "So it seems. I'm understandably a bit concerned about, er, how safe that's gonna be. It's soon too. Ten minutes."

And then Meighan speaks with passion that Bobby's only ever heard at academic conferences and convention halls. Given the content, he's gonna guess that she's a fan of Gar's… but not of Gar. Which is amusing as hell to say the least.

"He's quite good. Just ask Vorpal there. He'll tell you." The ice nerd grins, canting his head at that curiosity.

Gar is not bothered by fans. He figured out a long time ago that if you treat them like people, even when they say things like 'if you turned into a cow could I milk you' … then they aren't nearly as annoying. Besides, he's been there himself. And something else. She talked about that guy in the bucket. This might be why his subconscious is yelling 'familiar!' at him. So he's a bit hesitant when he asks.

"Are you a shapeshifter, Meggan? I've met one or two, but we're rare in the real world."

He offers her his hand to shake, smiling, green eyes looking at her with intense curiosity.

Even if she turns out to be someone who only thinks she is, he wouldn't dream of being rude about it.

"Bobby!" Keith says, his cheeks coloring. He grabs two seats, one for himself and one for Meggan, and lets Meggan sit down next to Gar while he sits next to Bobby, giving him the hairy eye. "You are completely incorrigible, you know that?" he says. Ask him how good he was, indeed.

Besides, she didn't need to ask, Keith wrote a whole blog post about that.

"Do I count as a shapeshifter?" Keith whispers to Bobby, "Or do you have to be able to change into more than one shape to qualify?" He'd always wondered, really.

Meggan grasps Gar's hand in both of her own. She seems beyond words, simply savoring the experience for several seconds. Then!

Meggan plops down in a chair. "Oh, yes actually," she tells Gar, but she seems to looking at Bobby with increasing interest as he discusses how he's going to have an unsafe assignation in about ten minutes.

"Oh is that what that is," she says to Keith, completely cryptically. Back to Bobby, she asks as she sips her coffee, "D'you mean- I mean - /here/? Do you need us to give you space, or…?"

"I think you do." Bobby whispers back, grinning at the greeting. "I'm fairly sure I don't. I just become frosty the snowman. Not a chaos cat." Which is truth be told a bit redundant. "I'm apparently to meet someone a couple blocks up." Bobby shrugs. On the one hand, it could be safe, even if only because of ice powers. On the other hand this could be ALL KINDS OF BAD.

"So Gar was kind of your hero then mmmm?" Gar's a hero to a lot of people, quite literally!

"Ignore him, he's very cold-hearted," Gar says. "Cruel even. Not evil most of the time, though."

Hero is such a loaded word. Changeling tries not to use it. Villain, though, he'll use.

"How're you liking New York?" he asks, because that accent speaks of Not A New Yorker. He'll let Bobby ask, if he wants anyone to watch his back.

"That's something we have in common, then." Keith says to Meggan, "I'm quite a fan of the green kid myself." He sips his coffee with a grin, gladly embracing the fanboyitude. "When I actually met him at the Tower, I tripped over my own name. I had to clarify that no, my name wasn't Keef."

He nudges Bobby. "C'mon, why don't I escort you to your romantic rendezvous up the back alley? We'll be back in no time."

Because tactical Keef is tactical: taking care of Bobby's 'problem' and giving Meggan a chance to talk to his boyfriend without extra ears making it awkward. Also, if Bobby runs into trouble that ice powers can't fix, there is always the handy chaos anvil. Anvils are a beautiful thing.

If Bobby is okay with them going, he's taking his coffee with him- because Mocha.

"Well," Meggan says, taking Bobby's question quite gravely, "I don't want to keep you, but it's really more of a… I can't quite put my finger on it off hand…"

She gives Keith a slightly baffled look, but says, "Oh, certainly! Um. Well, I do hope that you have a good time, Bobby!" Her cheeks are slightly reddened, but after this she turns her attention back to Gar.

"The city? Oh, I had to get used to it, because I grew up in the country, of course, except for that stint in an abandoned facility building thing-ee near one of the coal pits, and then after /that/ of course I came here, but I was going to school a bit further up the river, you see! But I've really been adoring it, simply to bits. Oh!!"

She almost swats the table in excitement, but restrains herself. "In fact — you've been quite the inspiration in many ways, I've actually been on /television/ recently."

"Sure, I'd appreciate the backup." Bobby chuckles. He's familiar with Keith's perpetual foot-in-mouth mutation. Clearly one of the less desirable side effects of being merged with a creature of pure chaos. The ability to say exactly the wrong thing. Hopefully the Titans haven't appointed him ambassador to anywhere.

"Shall we then?"

"Scream if you get into trouble," Gar says. "And maybe you should use a mirror first."

He gives an affectionate nudge to Keith as the red-head prepares to go with the cold one, and says to Meggan, "Oh? What program were you on? Are you thinking of going into it professionally?"

"Let us indeed. We won't be gone too long." Keith grins at Gar and Meggan, and returns the nudge. "Don't worry hon, I will." He remembered to bring his mirror, and we will use it before going into the alley.

And then he will cast an illusion over himself to make himself look like a perfectly normal Keef, not Vorpal. "Alright Bobby, let's go!"

"Secret Hospital," Meggan says. "Now of course I will admit that I was being a body double, which I suppose is in a sense not really acting."

She sips her coffee. "But it was terribly exciting! Oh, I almost died with joy just being /on the set/, I mean — do you follow Secret Hospital?"

Bobby does not follow Secret Hospital, so it's just as well that he's not there. Up at the alley a couple blocks away the ice nerd peers down the length of the narrow corridor between two buildings. "There doesn't appear to be anyone here." He grunts, hands in pockets. "Hrm. That's just a tad suspicious. What was that about a mirror, Keith?"

Gar grins. "Yeah, one of my friends is on that show, he's the intern they keep making run around shirtless. Totally not proper sterile technique, right?"

Like any soap opera is going to observe that kind of detail. Not since Young Doctor Kildare, which is long ago and far away.

"Yeah, body double is a great job, especially if they don't want you to deliver any lines. Do they have you doing any stunt work? If they do make sure you get paid extra, it's covered by a separate union."

So she worked on the same set as Michael- what a small world. Michael. It was hard for Keith to think of him as his real name, he is always Booster.

Boster Gold, the man who knows everything of what you need to know to make sure people know who you are. A glory hound, some might even call him… except that glory hounds tend to be cruel and detached, ready to cut your throat for the sake of the limelight, and Booster wasn't like that at all.

The man had gone with Gar and company into Faerie to save Keith's life. So there he went, breaking the stereotype. A fame-seeker with a heart of gold? Keith could roll with that. The redhead saw nothing wrong with wanting recognition for something you did well, or wanting to make a living out of your work. Some people, though, tended to think heroes should never think about doing something so crass as making money out of doing good deeds.

~They never seem to realize that the time we have to spend working an odd job is less time we have to spend keeping people safe.~
++Funny how that works, isn't it?++

"Oh, you haven't seen the trick yet, I take it?" Keith says to Bobby as they go to inspect the rendezvous place. "Allow me. Ahem…" the pocket mirror is extracted from Keith's coat and brought up to eye level, whereupon he says:

"We're All Mad Here!"

Inside the mirror, a grin appears, and in the blink of an eye Vorpal is standing there… and there is no reflection on the mirror but a hazy silhouette in black… and two very human, green eyes.

"Right, then. Let's not make your date nervous…" the illusion is put in place, and Keith O'Neil, not Vorpal, is standing there.

"You know Booster??? Oh gosh oh golly oh wow," Meggan says, practically scrunching up with glee. "Aaaaaaah what a small WORLD!"

"I want to give you a hug," she says then. "Will Keith be offended?" Her arms are already spreading in anticipation.

"You could make a house full of therapists nervous. Though I suppose they usually are." There's a slight blurring effect in the air and then Bobby realizes that a section of the brick wall in front of him isn't in fact wall but wall colored woman. The woman steps forward, coloration returning to her. She's albino. Pale skin, pink eyes, utterly bald. "Nice of you to come. Sorry for the mystery. I'm Riana. You're Iceman, X-Red and you're Vorpal, Titans. I wasn't expecting two of you."

Gar grins and moves in for the hug. "Keith will be OK. He might even accept a hug himself."

This is, of course, being captured on someone's cellphone cam. Because Gar is green and identifiable, and he inspires otherwise ordinary people to become evil paparazzi. It'll be on the HeroWatch next week, #ChangelingAndNewGirl #IsVorpalHistory?

"You're very good with that identification thing, Riana," Vorpal grins, the Keith O'Neil semblance melting away now that he doesn't need it. "How on earth do you know who I am, though? I figured I was still more on the obscure side of the spectrm here."

The Cheshire puts his hands on his hips, "I was in the neighborhood and decided to give my friend some company." He looks at Bobby to gauge whether or not this is the contact he was expecting.

Meggan squeezes Gar hard and tight. It's pretty squishy. But not painful!

She relents afterwards, putting her hands on Gar's shoulders for a moment and exhaling. "Oh my goodness," she says. Her eyes are glimmering, still on the edge of tears. "I suppose I was terribly fortunate to come here — so what are you up to lately? I mean I suppose there's all that superheroing, I always feel so rubbish at it half the time."

"We've been watching." Riana says quietly. Her accent isn't American. It's… vaguely French in a way that could place it easily in South America or Africa. "You've been investigating threats into the Kinzua dam, I believe. Both of you, so it's good you're here. I can give you answers. Not all the answers but I can put you on the trail of the people you're after. But you're going to have to do something for me in return."

Hrm. Bobby looks like he wasn't expecting this contact at all. And he also looks like he's trying to gage how much this young woman can be trusted.

"You know, the cold snarky guy who was here earlier, he's one of the X-Men, the Red Team" Gar says to Meggan. "They have some amazing facilities for training people in how to use their powers in all sorts of ways, even combat. I'm only beginning to get the Titans into shape for that kind of thing. Would you like to talk with him and Keith when they get back?"

He sips the peppermint and mocha and smiles, because it tastes like Christmas, and this one is lining up to be really a very good one for the first time in years.

"Hey, I'm getting ahead of myself. Why do you want to be a superhero?"

Vorpal wanted to be a superhero the night that he was 'born' as a creature of chaos. That's what he usually tells. What he hasn't told anyone, even Gar, was that he'd always wanted to help. To make a difference. It was one of the reasons Gar had been such an influence, and of course Her….

Granted, everybody in school tells you that you can make a difference without superpowers, and it's true… but if you tell that to a young man who has lost his family and his childhood home and is in a deep, deep depression, all you will get is a dead stare.

That night at the warehouse, Keith didn't die- he woke up from a four year death. He could have made a difference without powers. And he was trying to make a difference now with them.

"That's very serendipitous, Riana. However, I need to point out we're talking about potential casualties, a good number of them. Is it really necessary for Iceman and I to go on a Fetch Quest To Prove Our Worthiness, or can we bank on our hero cred here?" Vorpal says. Hey, he had to point it out.

Meggan blinks slowly.

She then slumps forwards, her forehead whacking the table. "Oh my God," she says, moans really. "That's why he seemed familiar - oh my God I'm a perfect ASS."

She straightens back up, blowing a lock of hair out of her face. "No I mean — well I'll be honest with you that I do live up there, at least a great deal of the time, and I'm studying, part time at least a bit." Her hands fold on the tabletop then as she continues dutifully. "I know exactly what you mean and I feel a PERFECT IDIOT because I suppose I must have only seen him in the distance."

Meggan sucks in a deep breath. "Well I'll be frank with you, that I don't know if I have the constitution for it… am I saying that right? I mean I enjoy helping people, of course, and I'm certainly very glad to be there, and it's been helpful - but I just mean that…"

Meggan looks down at her hands. "Oh, I don't know, I feel silly, I suppose. It's why I've been focusing on my studies so to speak, the last few months." (Gar does not have to know that Meggan has been rocking a consistent C-minus in a liberal arts degree that has the employability prospects of a week-old beefsteak tomato. He can probably guess.)

It might make Meggan feel better to knwo that Bobby only sort of recognized her. He's not at the mansion often and he frequently does his work with Non-Xers simply because the actual X-Men are so frequently very, very busy. Right now though he's focused on Chameleon girl. "What, anyway, did you have in mind for 'do something for you'." He's starting to get one of those feelings.

"I know things because my associates are involved in this business. And if I tell you, if they even find out I've met with you… some of them will kill me. The leaders, they're all for mutant soliderity, they wouldn't condone that, but some of the lower downs… it'll get ugly. And I won't survive. I need protection."

"Oh good Lord…" Bobby rubs his temples. Mutant soldierity. That can only mean one thing. "You're Brotherhood."

Time now for Gar to reveal that without the green, he's very blond himself. Up there? Wait, what does she mean?

"I'm not sure what you mean. He's part of the new team that formed here, but I don't know anything about the X-Men proper, other than what's been on the news."

Gar pauses, and engages his brains. Think, Garfield. "I mean, I could probably find out if I dug, but it would be seriously rude to do that. I guess you're staying with other X-Men? And you're out in the world for the first time and discovering that you don't know what you're doing here, right?"

Note: Gar Logan isn't actually an empath. However, his best friend among the Titans, other than Vorpal, is definitely an empath, and he's had to learn to sight-read emotive indices.

"You don't have to decide immediately. You can take your time, find what you really enjoy, find out what makes you stronger as a person, and what gives you joy. It doesn't have to be what other people like, either."

"Oh dear. Protection." Vorpal's ears flatten. "Well, at least this is starting to make some sense. Protection wise…" he looks at Bobby. "Can your guys offer good protection? I'm not sure the Titans right now have the infrastructure to protect…" what with Robin getting killed and a crazy woman who could crawl out of mirrors still loose out there. "I wouldn't want to offer a protection that is less than tight."

Meggan would probably be relieved if Bobby were right there, but he's /over there/ oh god she will die of awkwardness. (It's actually soothing to her to be surrounded by such white noise, in a way.)

She laughs, a little weakly. "I must be coming off as such a - - /noob/," she says finally. "It's not quite THAT bad, I haven't just come out from under some hill or anything like that." Her face is definitely burning right now.

"But thank you, though. I mean, it means a lot to hear that, especially from you."

Bobby sighs. "Ordinarily, Vorp, I'd say yes in a heartbeat, knowing your situation. But if she's Brotherhood I can't just bring her anywhere that'll suit without a lot of complications. None of the established X-ers are going to take kindly to a Brotherhood member at the Mansion and DCI is too public to be secure in the way that Riana probably needs."

The chameleon powered girl puts her hands in her hoodie and watches as Bobby thinks out loud. "Look, I'm all for pushing mutants rights and fighting the good fight. I think governments suck and are probably in on the problem but this? This is gonna kill a bunch of innocent people for nothing. And I didn't sign on for that. If you guys can keep me safe, I'll help, promise."

Bobby sighs and looks over to Vorpal. "Any ideas? If you guys can't maybe between the two of us we know someone. There's always Nan's friends but… we may not want to call on them for this. That'll get them involved and if the Brotherhood goes after them it'll get really, really bloody. They don't mess around with stuff like that."

"Noob is a very ugly word," Gar says. "There's nothing at all wrong with being a beginner, even when you're already a master of other things. Nobody I know ever learned everything without time and experience."

Peculiar. She's used the phrase 'under hill' and it seems she's been living in … abandoned coal pit? What?

Through all this, Gar's remained remarkably level emotionally, mostly curiousity, calm interest, and friendliness. You'd think he's trained this skill by being around someone for whom emotional spikes were a dangerous thing. Oh wait.

"And I'm happy to be here for you to talk to. I'll even give you my phone number, the one that doesn't go to voicemail first. It still does if I'm in a fight with some villain type though. That's just necessary, y'know?"

Vorpal takes a deep, deep breath. "There's…. always Shadowcrest. You know, Zatanna's house? It exists in a magical plane all by its own, and it is somewhat sentient. If Zatanna brings you there, you are safe. If someone tries to break in there to get to you… they are not safe."

The cheshire pauses. "Of course, I have to ask her, and she'll need to ask Daddy… but this is the right thing to do. Even if Shadowcrest isn't an option, the Titans will help." He could call on Waller, let Stormwatch know that there is danger to civilians and get Waller to offer Riana some security.

That was a nice plan. Except that it meant dealing with Amanda. And while Amanda may have behaved decently to Keith and Gar, all things considered… putting a mutantt in her hands, someone she can claim a debt of protection on, is not a good idea. At beast, that is a last-case sort of thing. He could always talk to that Melinda woman, who worked for SHIELD. Or Kate. Kate Bishop!

Of course! Kate Bishop. The cheshire grins at Riana. "Allow me to extend you the protection of the Titans, Riana. You will stay with us tonight and tomorrow we will find a safe, permanent placement for you. There's some people- trustworthy people- I need to call. What do you two say?"

Fortunately, Meggan's entire sordid past actually makes much more sense (and is significantly more depressing) than Gar may be assuming.

Her eyes widen at the offer. "Y - yes, of course! Do you want mine? I mean I'm being a little harsh on myself, I'm not exactly just… just a LUMP," she says, fishing out her phone. "And I know sometimes you need everyone."

Riana nods. "Alright. I assume you'll want to… talk to me at length at some point too. I trust you all talk to eachother enough that it won't be an issue? Also I should get off the street…"

Bobby nods. He may not know what Keith's thinking but he trusts the odd cat-thing. Gesturing back toward Gar, Meggan and the coffee shop he starts back with a 'Shall we'?

Gar does the phone number exchange, grinning.

"Sure, of course. And you don't feel like a lump to me, not at all," the green guy says. "You feel more like an elemental force, to be honest. I have the animal side wrapped up, but I suspect you're much more than that."

And another sip of the peppermint … wait.

"Hang on a second. I think I need to get another coffee," Gar says. He pulls a few dollars from his pocket and goes to the person at the counter. "Pumpkin spice mocha please."

"I'll get you off the streets. One moment…" the cat looks at Riana, and hmms, and snaps his fingers. The girl is not there anymore… in her place there is a perfectly normal young lady with dark skin and short-cropped hair. "This should disguise you well…" he peeks over his shoulder to where Bobby is gesturing and he spots Gar in the cafe, moving to the counter. "Looks like we're done in the nick of time, too. Let's get back before Gar consumes more caffeine and vibrates himself through the floor."

Meggan blushes terribly and seems to have little more to say. She then looks at her coffee (or is it Gar's?) with some surprise. When did that happen, she wonders.

Keith and Bobby probably get to see her staring intently at a coffee cup.

Bobby walks back in with a now darker looking Riana and Keith. "So, you two seem to have gotten along well." Beat. "Interesting coffee mmm? You know I don't think I caught your name and it's been bugging me 'cause you seem kind of familiar. I'm Bobby Drake." The Cool Dude offers a hand. He'll let Keith introduce Riana to Gar since apparently he's taking her home.

No, not like that.

Gar looks up as Keith walks in the door, and the barista seals the cup in its white lid with the punch-through spot for the straw.

"Hey," he says. "I had a feeling. Would you like a coffee? Pumpkin spice?"

The cheshire smirks. "How did you know? Are you sure you're not a witch?" he asks, and leans over to give Gar a kiss on the cheek. A cameraphone goes *click* - That's just going to confuse the HeroWatchers, really. "Garfield Logan, meet Riana." He doesn't ask her for her last name. She'll say it when she's ready. "She's going to be a guest of ours for a bit."

The cheshire cat looks at Megan, and gives her a - well, a Cheshire Grin. "This is what I transform into. See? I'm a shapechanger as well. Anyways, we should be heading out." He says that without hurry, but Gar can probably detect the slight urgency in his boyfriend's body language. Although the illusion won't vanish, he wants to get Riana off the streets and somewhere safe.

In the Titans' case, Somewhere Safe is a castle with a security system, anti-air defenses, and an entire underground base. "You should come visit sometime, Meggan. Come over for tea, we'll invite Boost over as well."

Meggan takes the proffered hand and does that clasp again, looking at Bobby, dead on.

Face your fears, she tells herself.

"This is terribly embarrassing," she says, "but I'm Meggan Puceanu and I live upstate." A thoughtful little cough. "I think we've run into each other a bit and I am /terribly/ embarrased I didn't recognize you, this semester was /horrid/." She does beam at Riana, before mouthing while gesturing at Gar, 'Lieutenant Ferin'

She looks to the Cheshire cat for a moment - and then says, "Oh! Well — good luck, please take care of everything—! And yes! Definitely! I'll bring some along if you like," possibly meaning Meggan has some obscure, potentially horrifying tea taste.

"Ooooh… that's why." Bobby waves it off. "Don't worry about it. I'm not up there myself much. Mostly down here. I didn't recognize you either. But it's nice to meet you. You should come by DCI sometime. Anytime really. Always welcome. I'll show you around."

"A witch I am not, a jedi, I might be," Gar says in perfect Yoda-ese. He does not become short, wrinkly, nor Mel Brooksish. This is a good thing.

Gar grins at Meggan's identification. "But you can call me Tork, they decided to do that when the Captain forgot his lines once."

The idea of different tea. Gar has no special gift with asian tea, but he did learn some amazing African herbal infusions with medicinal values.

Gar presses the pumpkin spice latte on the new girl. "If you hate pumpkin, I can get something else."

"Sorry, he's a pumpkin pusher," Vorpal explains to Riana and winks at Gar. That illusion will hold for a while, especially with Vorpal reinforcing it every now and again.

"Well, Tork, we ready to beam up?" he smiles at Bobby. "We'll keep you up to date on everything. YOu and Meggan heading out as well?"

Oh that is such a relief, Meggan thinks. "Oh certainly! What do you do there?" She then smiles at the other two (three now) and resolves to herself, even as she sidles over to gather up her bags, that she should go into coffee shops more often.

"I'm a researcher. And yeah, I think we will. Meggan do you have a ride? I'm headed home myself but I'd be happy to make a side trip to save you a walk, if you'd like. You look like you've got a lot of, er, Holiday cheer there."

"Oh, I do have all these bags," Meggan muses, "or else I'd just fly…"

Gar laughs at Bobby, well, chuckles, it's not that risible, but he does find it interesting that the Pillsbury Snow Boy seemed so shocked at the extent of Keith's Christmas Decorativity.

"And I'd fly us out to the castle, but nobody wants a dragon flying over Manhattan for Christmas."

Instead, Gar and Keith and Special Guest are heading for ESU. There's a certain room there that's got door that opens on two different places.

If you have the key.

Bobby waves to the other two. A break on the dam would be good. He'll have to notify the others he's got working on this mess. Sho among them. Maybe the lot of them can come talk to Riana. Then again he also trusts the Titans to handle this. He just hopes the Brotherhood doesn't start after them too quick.

"See you guys later. C'mon Meggan…"


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