What the tide brings

<February 18, 2015>: Vorpal, Changeling and Booster Gold meet up by coincidence to discuss the Atlantean Problem

The Beach

It's wet.



  • None

Mood Music:

As a tall, tanned, blond haired dude, Booster Gold looks like the kind of guy who ought to be standing on a beach. He is, indeed, standing on a beach at the moment; however, it is the wrong sort of beach. The sort of beach that suits him is the kind with sun-warm golden sand and deep blue skies with a few shreds of soft white clouds. It would also have rolling blue waves and pelicans gliding through the mild salt-kissed air.

The beach Booster is on right now has none of this, the sand is kind of grey and the water is grey and the sky is also kind of grey with some grey clouds. There are birds but they are gulls that keen like harpies and try to steal anything small enough to be swallowed whole. Skeets has been attacked three times already. There may even be an ice floe out there on the surly mumbling water.

Standing on the beach, several steps from the water line, Booster has his hands on his hips as he surveys the unsatisfactory beach and he comments, "I get that it's called Atlantis, but you'd think they'd have the manners to attack on the Pacific side just for our sakes."

Vorpal is still shaking the golden grains of sand from the kind of beach that Booster fantasizes about out of his fur as the Rabbit Hole opens- against all probabilities- a few feet away from where Booster stands. The blue skies, the azure waters, the blazing sun, these are all things that were part of a rather very special semi-anniversary slash Valentines day.

There were also other things that were part of it. Such as the cutlass and pirate hat that Vorpal is wearing on top of his usual uniform. "Land ho, me harties!" the cheshire says, dropping to a crouch as he falls from the hole- not noticing Booster just yet.

The green parrot with an eyepatch and pirate hat, improbably carrying a cutlass in his apparently small bird feet, fles out of the rabbit hole, calling out, "Scuttle me scuppers, Mister Vorpal!"

On the other side of the hole, there's an explosion as whatever his scuppers were, are completely scuttled. And blown up. Don't you wish you had that issue so you could see how they did that?

At the first sound of the pirate's arrival, Booster turns slightly, one fist raised and glowing with golden energy. As it turns out, the intruder is not an intruder at all, nor any sort of threat. Not to him, at least. "Oh. Hey, dude." He notices the parrot. "Dudes," he corrects. The energized fist relaxes and the glow vanishes as he turns the gesture into a casual wave. A few feet behind him, Skeets struggles around in the air, currently with a bewildered seagull perching on him, wings open.

"Well, well well, Booster Gold as I live and breathe!" Vorpal grins, taking his hat off and flourishing at the Justice Leaguer, "I haven't seen you in forever- I bet you're wondering why we look like theme park ride refugess…" he looks at the parrot. Trust Gar to always add that bit of 'je ne sais quoi', the quoi in question being tropical poultry.

Said poultry reverts to Garfield Logan rather quickly, still wearing the eyepatch but not the pirate hat, because it was far too small. He's wearing the remains of a white linen "pirate shirt" tied around his waist like a kilt, and is now holding the cutlass, but otherwise, not much.

"I wish we had time to get the picnic basket back," Gar notes. "We only got to eat half of the stuff I made."

"Uh, I hadn't wondered," Booster admits, to Vorpal. This is not a sign of disinterest; he may have assumed that this is just a common fashion choice for this era. He nods at the cutlass that Gar is holding, saying, "Have you been keeping watch for Atlanteans as well?"

Skeets and his unwelcome gull companion careen through the air and briefly out of view. There is a brief flicker of red light accompanied by a zapping sizzle sound and a smell of burnt feathers, as well as an avian screech of dismay. Skeets floats back in serenely, without his rider.

Booster gestures to the chilly looking ocean with his thumb as he says, "There hasn't been much to see, here. I mean, some of those little pointy crawling things but they weren't weaponized or anything."

"Skeets, hello! It's been ages-" the cheshire cat blinks at Booster's words. "Oh, no, we weren't keeping watch over the Atlantic. We took a day off, so to speak. It was our six month anniversary and it just happened to fall on Valentines day. So we went to an island in the caribbean to celebrate… and the next morning, well. Zombie pirates on a haunted ship." He sighs and looks at Gar.

"At least it didn't happen during the date. That's a first time, right?"

"You mean crabs? Yeah, they're normal. It's the ghost crabs you have to worry about."

The green guy pauses to let that sink in.

"I don't think there are any atlanteans near," Gar says. "I mean, I don't feel like it would be super-impossible to be one, but it's not really EASY like it would be if they were within five miles in any large numbers."

Skeets looks a little scuffed up due to scrabbling bird feet and beak attacks, but as he floats there his golden hide seems to be rippling faintly, in the process of some sort of self-repair. "Hello, sirs," he says, to Vorpal and Gar.

"Crabs, yeah. They just get eaten by the birds." Booster turns his head to look at the sea, again. "And no, there aren't any. I've been scanning for them. Not that I want any," he hurriedly adds, just in case his boredom comes across in the wrong way. "I know it's important to be vigilant or whatever."

"So I guess you're patrolling on orders from the League?" Vorpal asks, looking down at Gar… yes. His green boyfriend is wearing a shirt kilt and nothing else. The benefit of being Keith was that he could change into Vorpal and wham, new set of clothes. Skinny dipping in the Caribbean, you just don't expect a horde of undead pirates, do you?

A cold, COLD breeze off the ocean makes Gar break out in gooseflesh, and moments later, in fur. And a tail. All green. Why mess with a good gimmick?

"I dunno, is this where they attacked before? I'd expect them to go somewhere else. We have a lot of coast and not much of it's guarded. Not like the borders between countries," Gar says, starting with a shiver but tailing off to just a normal conversation.

"Well… I mean, I don't really take orders," Booster comments, but he grins faintly. "I just help out." The breeze stirs his hair slightly but he otherwise does not react to it; when in costume, he must not feel the cold. "It doesn't matter where I patrol, anyhow. I can see for miles, more if I fly up a little bit." Booster taps the side of his goggles. "Even if I don't see something, my visor might. If I happen to… you know, not be avidly guarding. Maybe watching a movie or something. This is hypothetical."

"…Skeets, whatever he does, don't let him watch any Adam Sandler movies." Vorpal thinks there is no need for Booster to downgrade his current opinion on their civilization. "Also include anything with 'Madea' in the title and anything involving a Wayans or a Bay."

The Cheshire smirks and looks at Gar, "Haven't you seen the ads, Gar? Fur is murder."

He's not going to comment on the day where one of those PETA protesters threw a can of paint at his purple self under the mistaken assumption that the Vorpal thing was really just an elaborate costume lined wih fur.

Three days of scrubbing.

"Well, remember that thing we told you about Kid Flash? It's very serendipitious that you're here, because we've go another one. Supergir-KARAZOREL. Her. She looks the same, but different personality. Doesn't remember a. single. thing. Does this mean the timeline is unravelling or something?"

"Not all Wayans are evil, Vorpal," Gar chides. "Sometimes they're just lowest common denominator."

He snorts at the 'fur is murder' … remembering that the first time he ever used the "giant skunk" form was when some PETA fools threatened to splash him with paint. They were easily identified. EASILY.

"Right, and we have a Cyborg who … I'm not sure if I remember him right. You weren't here yet, but when Wiccan replaced our Tower by pulling in echoes from a thousand nearby other universes, I was getting the most amazing cross-talk with other Gars, it made the whole 'try your Stepdad's mind-helmet on and have it mess with your brain' experience worth it. Sorta. Anyway, I think I remember him being a scientist, not a pro football player."

"You know, I'm surprised you're noticing this stuff," Booster remarks at Vorpal's information, rubbing his chin and looking thoughtful. When Gar talks, Booster says, "Oh… oh." He grimaces faintly. "No, Vorp, the timeline isn't unravelling. It's still intact. This is a timeline that has undergone a lot of ruptures and breaks but it's not falling apart right now. Eh…" His hand covers his mouth briefly and then he gestures at Gar. "I'm starting to think that whatever Wiccan did may have tweaked your time senses."

"Booster, I'm a walking node of chaos magic that, from time to time, ceases to exist. I think that I am sensitive to this sort of thing by default. Gar, on the other hand, is connected to Animal Planet and that does something to him. A scientist, really?" Vorpal double-takes at Gar. "That's… a stretch. This version of the guy is the farthest thing from scientist… he thought the Titans were a sports team," he says to Booster with a raised eyebrow. "A sports team. Do you see Zatanna playing Football?"

"If there is a timeline where Zatanna plays football, I want to go there," Gar says. "I mean, c'mon, that would be awesome, right?"

He nods to Vorpal after that. "Yes, I am serious. I think he was a scientist, not a jock. I mean, he was also a jock… and there's one that I really don't understand where he was a toaster, I think that might just be me remembering that stupid teevee show again. WAIT! They had a Cyborg toaster! Howcome they knew before he was even around?!"

"Chaos or not, you shouldn't be noticing fluxes as much as you are," Booster explains, to Vorpal. "Don't be surprised if other people have no idea what you're talking about. It's like…" He gestures vaguely with his hands, then looks around and picks up a long, singed gull feather and utilizes it like a quill to draw in the damp sand. He puts in a wavey line with other wavy lines around it, branches and criss-crosses. It looks like a DNA helix that got hit by a weed whacker. "When there's an alteration in the timestream, generally people don't notice because once it happens, that's the way it's always been. Their memories aren't changed, per se. They're just in line with things as they have always been from that point on. See?" Looking up from his crouch, he blinks a bit at Vorpal. "I don't see why Zatanna couldn't play. We had women playing on my team."

"The day I see Zatanna in a tackle pile will be the day the Joker starts making sense." Vorpal smirks, and looks down at the drawing.

"Well.. that would be true if I were your regular folk, Boo, but I'm not. I've got a Fae soul fused into me, and the Fae exist outside of regular time. That's what Faerie is all about- a place that is completely divorced from… everything. Including common sense."

He slowly turns his head to look at Gar. "Why, Garfield, don't you know? Everybody has a Cyborg toaster. The iToast. Apple released it while you were in a coma."

"Liar, they can't get the iToast to work because the batteries keep catching fire and burning the toast," Gar says, accusing. He looks at Booster. "I think I can remember it because I know it was from outside, if that makes sense. I deliberately made it part of my existence in the Red, like Vorpal says. Which seems to be sort of the same thing in all the reality branches. So, it's the same idea as Faerie. It's connected but not tied into the branching."

Tossing the feather aside, Booster stands up straight once more. "I'm not too worried about it. I think you guys are noticing it in people you've had direct contact with. You haven't said anything that leads me to believe you're seeing retrogressions, overlaps or floating discontinuities. You're just retaining your memories." He dusts a little sand from his hands. "Trust me, if these were major breaches, I wouldn't be this calm."

"How would you know? You'd be busy watching the newest season of Game of Thrones," Vorpal teases Booster with a grin.

Oooh, Time Master stuff.

"What does a retrogression look like? Is it the thing where Kara keeps retroactively being someone else, with the ones we've known disappearing? Is an overlap like if I was here, and at the same time at the Castle doing homework? Are floating discontinuities worse or better than sinking ones?" Gar is asking this stuff … where did he come up with those questions? Oh, wait, he was just on a Caribbean island with Vorpal and then fighting zombie pirates. He's probably gone loopy.

But probably not time-loopy.

"I can feel it, Vorp. If it's a minor incident then I need to be close to the source, if it's major… well, it doesn't matter where I am, I'll know about it," Booster explains, reaching out and giving Vorpal a nudge to the shoulder with his fist. He turns a bit to answer Gar's questions, waving his hand in a vague way. "A retrogression is… kind of like a very intense and continuing deja vu. It's kind of hard to describe." He scratches the back of his head, gazing at the sand.

"Imagine you had a big decision to make," says Booster. "It would cause a split where you made one choice in one reality and the other choice in another. But in this case you keep bouncing back and forward, in and out of both branches at the same time." He spreads his hands. "An overlap is close to what you describe, and a floating discontinuity is like… if you had intact memories and items from a friend, like Kara, but she did not actually exist in the timeline… you can see how that'd be a problem."

"Technically there would be three branches. What about the branch where you choose not to choose? Or four branches- the branch where you are about to choose but are distracted because a whale lands on you? Or what about-"

Vorpal comes up with sixteen scenarios. Sixteen. This is probably why Gravity Lad decided to go back to his own time. "That'd be a lot more branches than just two, wouldn't it?"

Gar nods. "So, all timey-wimey wibbly-wobbly stuff. Don't complicate the analogy, Vorp, I'm pretty sure it's really the quantum level stuff, not any macro actions, that make the physics work. We probably only notice the variances that happen because of the macro actions by … "

Gar stops for a moment.

"Is there an object or thing imposing external sorting on realities?"

"I was trying to simplify it to explain it," Booster tells Vorpal, patiently. "But I can see it caught your imagination, you can see how nasty it could be. Gar has the right idea, though. Eh…" Booster hesitates, then. He does not seem stumped by Gar's question, he just looks thoughtful and when he speaks again it is in a slow and careful manner. "There are those who keep things going the way they should go."

"So Scott Bakula IS the lord of time. I knew it," Vorpal mutters. He looks at Booster out of the corner of his eye. "… and there are timelines where I'm a total criminal and an ass, are there not? And you know where these are?" Bad thoughts. Bad thoughts.

"Remember, meta-time, Vorp buddy. You're made of parts that don't all come from inside time. There may be a lot of places where you don't exist but you would have, right?" Not that Gar is terribly confident in this, because he's pretty sure that there's just as much meta-structure and there are at some level, infinite realms of Faerie, discontiguous.

"Who says how they should go?" Gar says after a moment. "I'm thinking something more concrete than a handful of Time-Masters, anyway. Like an over-spell or a giant machine. Something that makes things organize into easier-to-find constructs so you don't end up slogging through the boring almost-identical sheaves."

"If you're wondering whether I'll take you on a multiverse tour, it's not gonna happen," Booster smirks at Vorpal. "Not by me at any rate." He lifts his hands and waves them vaguely again as he tells Gar, "No one decides how they should go, it's more a matter of letting them unfold as they will. But there are beings that can damage timelines and destabilize realities. If you're asking if there are places to go outside of time where you can keep track of everything, yes, those do exist."

"Of course there are. Faerie is one of them," Vorpal adds. "Or at least, parts of Faerie are. It depends on where you are. But since location in Faerie changes according to whim… time and space there are a strange thing. They can be together, or they can be divorced, and sometimes only do conjugal visits."

He pauses, and tries to go over what he just said in his mind, and whether or not that made sense. He then turns to Gar with a look of infinite compassion and understanding and says, "Dear god, how do you put up with me?"

"I just go with it," Gar replies, "Like I told you the first time you asked me that."

He chastelydemurely kisses Vorpal on the cheek so as not to frighten Skeets.

He's also figured out that Booster cannot, or more sanely, will not, answer the questions he doesn't really need to know the answers to because he might BREAK something.

"Wait. Time and Space are the same thing, Einstein said so."

"Oh there are a lot of places that exist outside of time," Booster agrees, to Vorpal. "But only a few are dedicated to keeping track of what's going on inside of time." That seems to be as much as he'll admit to. "And yeah, they kind of are the same thing in the sense of one being a… a direction of the other. Geez, what's the word in this language." After drumming his index finger on his chin, Booster says, "Dimension? Anyway you can move through time the way you move through space. Although I don't suggest going into the timestream. If you're not a particular sort of person it can really rip you up if you don't have a vehicle."

"You know this, but you also know that Faerie doen't play with a full set of rules sometimes. It's like the place a creator decided to use as a sandbox." Vorpal smirks and chastely returns the kiss.

"We should be heading to the castle to make you decent, Gar, what with you wearing only that shirt around your waist. Paparazzi will draw the wrong conclusions with Booster here and all…"

He winks at Gar, then says, "Booster, want to head over for a cup of coffee at the castle? Get you warm before resuming your patrol?"

"I'll, uh, oh, crap," Gar says, eyes going strangely red for a second. "Timestream swimming. Yeah, so, it turns out that there's an ape for that, but I'll avoid being one, unless for some reason I end up in the timestream. Geez."

He shakes his head at Booster's "JUST the way you move through space" and says, "Nah, I'm stuck with the one-way trip ticket and I'm pretty much happy with that," to the gold-and-blue guy.

"Clothes? Sure, I guess. I'm wearing fur. It's not like I'm uncovered," Gar says. A bit too comfortable, apparently.

"Nah dude, I appreciate the offer but you guys just got home from your vacation," Booster gives a wave of his hand. "I'll visit later, you need time to settle in and stuff. I mean, socially of course, but I'd also like to have a closer look at the place if you don't mind. I'd like to make sure you don't have time-related problems attached to your castle."

"Sounds good. But I'm gonna hold you to that promise, Booster. Let's do a patrol soon, alright?"

The Cheshire opens a rabbit hole and gestures to Gar. "After you, Lord Godiva. You may be a freedom rider, but I do care if someone looks." He doesn't, actually, but he had to work that reference in. He smiles and will step in after Gar and close the hle behind them after waving at Booster.

"Probably not at the Castle. We have an octoleggis muscavorix living there, not a bad critter for a fourth-dimensional monster, came with me from the Tower, but that's probably not a temporal cataclysm."

Gar strides through the rabbit hole, growing bunny ears on the way. They should be fine by the time Booster arrives.

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