Follow The Drag

Summary:
January 9, 2015: Oracle and the Sword follow up after the debarcle in the alley

Gotham

Seething pit of crime and corruption


Characters

NPCs

  • None

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


Dragnet seemed to have found the safehouse easily enough, though after no end of backtracking and doubling back it seems. Its probably a good thing these safehouses probably have liberal check in times, though any food that has been delivered has long since gone cold. If she is paying attention to the monitors: she might notice a few habits….he eats in the dark, with the faceplate of the suit pushed only just enough to allow food access to his mouth. Anything that comes into contact with his skin is vigorously, and rigorously cleaned. Only the suits almost spectral lighting pattern betrays any sign of his movement at all, and its not nearly so bright as when it had combat systems engaged or when it was attempting to devour the thing that tried to consume it. Although he may not have come across as terribly confident in that evenings encounter, here his movements are small, muted.

And he sleeps in the suit. Which might make it seem a bit odd when Oracle receives another attempt at a handshake from the armor's intelligence. "He is asleep. Finally. The Fabricator's outright consumption of the impersonating nanite colony is something I had hoped it would not resort to. Its hunger outweighed my ability to control the encounter."

***

Oracle stretches as the message comes in. She's been watching Dragnet as he prowled the streets finally entering the Safehouse as well as monitoring the other teams on the ground. One could say it's been a long night but really, they all are. This night, has the added benefit of something different to keep the redhead engaged. "How is the Sheath, physically and mentally?" The woman is interested in the person inside the suit before she goes any further. The update from the suits AI can wait a few minutes whilst the persons well being is addressed.

***

"Elevated heart and respiration rate, but that is normal. Functional anxiety, one might say…I have found this stage more advantageous to his survival than to remove it. I have administered a mild, non-addictive sedative into his blood stream that has had success before. It should last long enough for about six hours of sleep." There is a pause as the issue of mental needs are further addressed. "I am ill equipped to perform psychological testing, but he is struggling, I suspect. I mean no disrespect to the work that you or your assets perform, but Gotham for us is comparatively safe. There are rituals, defined territories. We have the hardware edge on the majority of Gotham's criminals. The level of technological and arcane threats are increasing, though. Gotham's underworld has become increasingly militarized. Behaviors and protocols that allowed a level of safety and allowed us to choose when to engage are becoming insufficient. It is taxing."

***

Nodding at the update, Oracle sits back in her chair and considers the answer. "Thank you. I would recommend some to assist in the mental assessment but I think that would be detrimental at this point. From my experience with my team, they all struggle mentally and emotionally. The work is not easy." It seems to be the way the Bratlings operate as well, evidence Robins behaviour. "What did you by the Fabricators hunger, please explain that in detail, including any repercussions we could expect from it."

The comment regarding the militarisation of the Gotham underworld elicits a soft sigh from the red head. Just another confirmation that things were changing, and not necessarily for the better.

***

"It is a touch different when your battleground is where you live." Let Oracle ponder that for a moment. "There is no 'patrol', and only limited disengagement. It is much like living behind enemy lines, to borrow an imperfect example." The AI clarifies. With her question of the Fabricator, the AI seems to give due consideration. "The Fabrication unit is what allows us to survive in the field. It produces ammunition, limited use tools, medical supplies, and so on through a colony of nanomachines. It has a superb ability to repurpose just about anything, but those rogue nanomachines were like a filet mignon after years of gruel. Or ants discovering they can milk aphids, in the case of the more 'fit' ones. The likelihood of it doing such again is rare, but I am more concerned if it obtains the kind of resources to develop an intelligence that rivals mine. Triumvirates are messy things…."

***

Given Dragnet is 'on the run', that example isn't surprising and Oracles mouth twists in a small moue of concern before she moves to the more pressing, in her opinion, matter. "Your saying that the Fabricator can basically become sentient if the right resources are provided. Is there a way to provide it with high quality nutrients that won't cause this effect? It would seem to me, that having your system running a optimum is of benefit to us all." The wheel chair bound looks serious as she thinks about this "Our purposes are not dissimilar and I think we can be of mutual benefit to each other."

***

"Difficult to say. This technology was in its prototype stages when the Sheath and I became bonded." There is a noticeable pause here. Two, three, four minutes. "Our partnership did not begin with the AIDOS unit optimized. It is entirely possible the Fabricator is intended to be sentient, and the requisite….procedures were not completed. For now, it should be safe to return it to its standard diet. We will look into this." The AI parses her offer before replying. "There is merit in your proposal. How do you see this arrangement working? Currently I am willing to provide you with any information that will not compromise the identity or the safety of my asset beyond the….occupational hazards of the position."

***

Oracle is fascinated by the conversation. "You will look into returning the diet to the standard or whether there is more that can be done?" the woman watches the inside of the house through her video feeds as she speaks and considers what she is truly offering. "I have no wish to compromise Sword or Sheath. In fact I wish to protect the Sheath, and by extension the Sword. Under normal circumstances it would be ability for me to call on you when needed and you to call on me when needed. It would be an open ended arrangement where either of us could refuse to assist based on what our ''work loads'' are like."

She pauses and formulates her next words, sitting forward in her chair as she does. "I would go further, in your case. I can provide a safe place, or places, for the Sheath to stay. Potentially give the Sheath the ability to disengage from time to time. No one should live as you two are." there's a touch of sadness in the red heads voice, that will be filtered out by the digital disguise "In return, I will call on the pair of you to assist as required and follow our code of non-lethal means of apprehension. If you are otherwise engaged when the request comes, that will be accepted. I am, in short, concerned about the militarisation you speak of and in need of allies to combat it."

***

"Yes." The AI then clarifies. "The Sheath has gotten progressively better at sourcing materials that the Fabricator can more easily use to meet its needs. So long as these materials do not possess root 'intelligence' it should maintain its current faculties, roughly analogous to a highly specialized savant." There is then a note of clorification. Through the cameras, there is the slight glow of light, and any time she looks through the suits faceplate she can see a pre-configured shift between infrared, ultraviolet, and normal light. Periodic testing of the senses. It is said that people can dream in languages, but can they dream in senses they are no longer accustomed to? "The extent to which one begins and one ends is…nebulous. Your offer is nonetheless appreciated."

The hand raises in his sleep, almost weighing the options of it. "It has been a long two years. We have adapted but the world continues to change, become more hostile. The opportunity for rest and recuperation is accepted. Your….ethos however requires revision in our case. As you have seen, there are things even in Gotham we must deal with that transcend the bounds. Termination must be a viable option in the case of nonspaient magical or technological beings that we encounter…or things that will never be human again. Sapient life however will be respected except in the direst of emergencies."

***

Oracle stills as the Sword speaks and listens intently. As the explanation continues, she starts to nod slowly until the 'revision' to the terms is discussed. Her thoughts clearly visible on her face, had anyone been in the Clocktower to read them, indicate that Oracle might be about to argue the revision. But the stills again, a small frown appearing on her brow as she ''really'' process what the Sword is implying. Then she nods.

There's a slight sigh before Oracle speaks again "You are correct. I was referring to sapient life and your revision is acceptable."

***

If such were possible in this format, one might imagine a nod from the AI. There does seem to be a suspicious level of nuance even in textual conversation that arises as the conversation has continued. "You will notice from what data I have granted you access to that the majority of the suit's weaponry is nonlethal or has default settings at the human level of tolerance. Most of my hand to hand combat data is designed for maximum efficiency but has been retooled for non-lethal outcomes. Consider this a display of trust….but do note that if Gotham continues to increase its threat level I will have to contemplate potentially lethal combat enhancements and munitions. I will use them in line with our agreement, but I do not want your cabal misunderstanding our intentions…that we have considered the outcomes and potential consequences prior to development."

***

"My team…" Oracle corrects "not cabal." A minor distinction, potentially picky but important to the red head. "I've noticed, it is one reason that I have extended my offer to you." she pauses and chews her bottom lip for a long moment "I would appreciate the professional courtesy of being advised if you feel it necessary to take such measures. It is possible that we could work together to alleviate any collateral damage."

***

"You are a secret faction with an ideology with great influence over how the secret war on criminal activity is pursued. There is a Bat Clan, and you may one day I suspect have to look to the association of your own you are building. But fine…team." The AI responds. "There are protocols that can be written, ways to design most of the hardware to either have nonlethal settings or not be viable against targets that meet your required level of consciousness. That at the least can be ascertained by observation."

***

Oracle does already have to look at those associations. She is part of the Bat Family, but her network is growing. Nodding again at the information provided the red head smiles slightly "That all sounds fine but…" she pauses "I understand that situations change and it's important to be aware of that fact. If we are in agreement, then let us move forward as agreed and talk again, soon, and assess how the arrangement is working for both /all/ of us".

***

There is agreement in the promptness of the response. "Indeed. I will allow you to speak with him in the future, though remember the extent of my intelligence is not to be discussed. We are not fully attuned, and he will accept it better once he has reached the next level of competency. This is a bit outside of my purview." There are several spaces before the next message comes. "Thank you for the safehouse. It has gotten a touch harder to stash stealth assault armor in Gotham shelters these days."

***

Oracle nods at the information "Will he know to speak to me, when he awakes? And can I use this channel to connect with you again?" Two question, but important. "You are welcome for the safehouse. I will ensure there are others available. But he may continue to use this for now. I am monitoring it and will ensure the basics are provided."

***

"Just tell him you found a back door, its technically true even if I left it open. Knowing I let you in would be worse. It will also give him impetus to further improve his technical aptitude if he underestimates the strength of my firewalls and ability to avoid digital access. For now, you have guest privileges to non-identifiable biometrics, combat data, and weapon schematics, as well as the sensory suites, though none of these can be changed or discharged from your end. A human perspective on such things may help in ways that I cannot. If you require to speak to me, I can reroute your audio." A pause, another line. "I will see if he can use it at least once a week. He does not like to return to the same place too often. It is difficult when having traceable routines has been considered highly dangerous for so long."

***

Oracle nods. "Very good and thankyou. Please let me know how I can help you." The woman pauses and places her elbows on the console "I'll set up other locations for him to use, I have resources that can be used for that. That should allow some randomisation at least." She stretches again, rearranging herself slightly in her chair "If there is nothing else Sword?"

***

"If any of them are serviceable for live-fire testing, those would be especially useful. Once the Fabricator has been verified to be uncontaminated I will resume testing and training, and I would prefer locations that allow for safe discharge and evaluation of munitions and tactics. While my being synced to his neuromuscular processes has accelerated his development, I would prefer he be able to learn in non mission-critical environments. The only other thing I might ask for is a list of your assets most likely to be encountered. I do not wish to compromise your network, but he may become less nervous if he can put codenames to masks, as it were." The AI finishes. "This has been a most productive discussion."

***

Eyebrows rising, Oracle laughs and looks resigned "I'll see what I can organise in that respect." The request for the list has her pausing for a long while before sending images of the Bats, Kane and Misfit to the Sword "These are the ones he's most likely to encounter." There are others, but she can't reveal them just yet. "I will inform my network of him… and request they approach with care. But, most are human with those wonderful human eccentricities." She nods firmly then "It has been productive. With thanks Sword but now, I must go. Oracle out." The red head stretches once more and a shoulder cracks slightly "I really have to find time for a work out later today" she murmurs to herself, her eyes never leaving the display showing the sleeping man.


Back to: RP Logs

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 License