Business is Business

March 19, 2015: Catwoman and Two-Face have a little face to face to whiskers conversation about Gotham, loyalties and their plans.

South Point, Gotham

A warehouse meeting



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Mood Music:

Gangster meetings don't happen very often in Gotham and, when they do, they usually end in bloodshed. Catwoman isn't your usual gangster, though, and Two-Face sees no reason to treat her like one. Is she formidable? Sure. But she's not Carmine Falcone or Black Mask. She might not be trustworthy, but she's not gonna come in looking to murder Harvey, at least from her reputation. As for her gang? Well, maybe…they'd certainly kill to protect her.

He chose a warehouse of relatively legitimate provenance - he owns it, but it's tertiary and for an above-board business. At the moment, it's also largely empty, awaiting another shipment of dual cam engines to come through. In the meantime, Harvey has it to himself. It's on the edge of his territory, however, close to Catwoman's home, and an ideal place to negotiate boundaries and work out things. He allowed her to arrive first and search through the place to her satisfaction - Cats were skittish, and he needed this one to feel safe.

He arrives at last in a long car, a Rolls-Royce, black with whitewall tires. One of his In-Betweeners steps out, part of his elite guard, clad in a bisected black and white suit. He moves snappily, opening the door to let Two-Face step out. His molls, Samantha and Delilah, flank him, one on each arm as he approaches. There's been a small card table set up, nothing fancy, and two chairs. Another car carries as few more of Harvey's soldiers, but, after a flip of the coin, he gestures for them to stay in the car as he takes a seat.

He looks at Catwoman with his mismatched gaze, one eye bulging, the lid not even fully fitting over it. "Catwoman," he says in greeting, "Anything I can get ya? My car's fully stocked - whiskey, wine, beer. I think we might even have a bit of cream somewhere," he says in his rough-edged voice.

Catwoman has her normal finesse, her own calling card, something rather different and yet akin to the arrival when the bat-signal was once functional. No more. Shit changes in Gotham when it has to, she has to adapt to her foes and allies it was made apparent when her girl that had been with her since the beginning was delivered to her doorstep mutilated and dying. She changed when she had to pull the plug and kiss deaths rattle from her lips when she withdrew the blade.

A Cadillac Ciel pulls up to head on face the Rolls Royce, a look of the old but brand new an sleek design, a simple nod with the future in mind while the past is not forgotten in a machine. Behind it two Dodge Chargers pull in and angle outward, the Alley Cat members stepping out to stand there and watch with doors hanging open, the insignia marking them as what they are the quartet of scars beneath their left eyes. Their bear no weapons openly, but just like Harvey's, you know better. From within the Ciel the back door opens and Catwoman disembarks, but not in the Cat-suit, booted feet step down upon the ground, metallic spires of heels clicking over the crete, buckles riding up to just beneath her knee where the shining black synthetic fabric commences, high waisted and criss cross laced around the hour glass curvature of waist, tucked within is a white button up shirt, collared but open down the neckline in a deep V that reveals the black lace top holding cusp over bosom. Black and white dread locks adorn her head, a mane twisted and tied up while parts caress down over shoulders. In her arm is a hairless feline, the rust colored eyes flickering their incandescence against the lighting. Inside the warehouse her men have already scoped it a nod to her only gets an up tilt of her chin in response, emerald eyes sliding from her men to Harvey while Keith takes her back, casting a large shadow.

"A small bowl of cream," Finger stroke over the hairless flesh of Amenti. "I will take whiskey, no rocks."

No seat yet, take your fill, times have changed and what lies between them has not… Yet.

Two-Face just turns his head and grunts, sending Samantha off to go get the requested drinks, his Johnny Walker double brought along as well. His suit was once a beautiful thing, expensive Hugo Boss and tailored to perfection. The left side, of course, had been ruined, stained, shredded, torn in spots. There are burns along the cuffs, as if the previous owner had been set on fire. Or perhaps the current owner, judging from a rather fresh pucker of wet, ruined scar along Harvey's forearm. He flexes his left hand with the stinging remnants of the pain. Asymmetry has its price.

"You're starting to look like a real crook, Cats," he says. "I mean that in the best way possible, of course. Seemed like you were holdin' your nose for a while, but the only way to survive in this city is to learn to swim in the muck. But I understand, cats ain't so fond of the water," he says.

Cream and whiskey alike are sat down. Harvey idly spins his coin on the table, watching the heads flicker from one to the other in a blur, almost hypnotizing himself, before he snaps out of it, "Take a load off and we can talk business. Don't get me wrong, I don't mind the view, but you don't want me starin' at you too long. I'm creepy," he says, the lipless left side of his mouth seeming to flex tendons as he smiles.

"Anyway, the girls might get jealous, and then they bitch, and if they bitch…well, sometimes we don't get along so well. An' none of us want that, not even me. Well…maybe half of me," he says.

"Then you understand where others fail to. A girl has her vices, but she also has her limits." A sweep of eyes over Two-Face and the recent as well as age old injuries that make him exactly who he is. They all have their scars and burdens to bear, it does not change how she looks at him, a chill there, but its just deserved. Business is business.

Approaching the table her arm bearing the Sphinx lowers, the cat landing upon the table before the cream, stretching and then indulging after a cautious sniff and hairy-eyeballing of Harvey. "You seem to forget Harv. I am a cat of many of my own faces. I have my girls, my ladies of the night, my club, and my district. I /do/ creepy." In saying as much that one word drawn out on a sultry tone while she folds into her seat with that felinistic nary a care manner, one arm draping over the back. If she could sprawl like her cat, she would. Upon fingertips are white gold and diamond tipped claws, a flashy adornment but one seen when her hand gestures out and fingers curl while she sweeps over the place. "Tell the girls to come see me sometime, I could give them a night of what they need to lay off for a while."

The smile that splits crimson painted lips is one that can bear question, and yet mirth lies in the depths of narrowed eyes. But it fades in a snap. "What is it you want of me and mine, Dent. Mel seems to think this can work. Hope and shit. You know the old adage'

Two-Face chuckles, "The girls would probably enjoy that. Of course, they can't enjoy it too much. I'll want them back, after all," he says, taking a sip of his whiskey as he snatches up his coin, dropping it back into his pocket with a quick flick of his wrist. He looks mildly at the actual cat, a little non-plussed, but he relatively expected it. He's just not a pet person.

"Sweet kid, that Mel. Kinda hard to believe she's mixed up in all this business. I'm guessin' there's a story there," he says, leaning over as Samantha puts a cigarette between his lips, then tilting the other way as Delilah lights it, "Which you aren't going to tell me, I'm sure. Still. More than your average mook," he says.

"But she's right. I think you and I can get along. I think we can do business. And I think we can agree that, whatever other people might say about us, there's a lot worse in this city than either you or me. Batman thinks he can clean up this city, but he and I both know he's foolin' himself. Hell, nobody knows it better'n me. All I did was get dirty tryin'. Time'll come when he falls down, too, and prob'ly farther'n me if it comes down to it. All the way to the bottom of the harbor,' he says.'

When Two-Face intones his wonder about Mel those precious gem eyes zero in on him, kohl lining darkening the gaze…/Careful/. "She's mine." And even on those two words one can read the danger, the caution, the warning, the possessiveness. It's like a mother that just got told her child was at risk for disappearing, and in Gotham that very well could be the case. Intrigue, one throne to rule them all.

But as that came, it went, her lounge never changing from that lax demeanor. "Oh you can have them back whenever you choose. A good night is a good night. If we can come to what you seem to think we can, then no playing for keeps." In saying that one finger rises and tick-tocks back and forth with a purse of lips to usher forth the tsk-tsk.

The mention of the Bat has her brows furrowing, a tender subject and Harvey should know this. Sitting upright now 'Leonne' leans upon the table and places fingertips upon the surface just beside Amenti, those claws tapping over the top and in their arching press they tap out their own /keen/ presence. "And what do you call this meeting? It is our own methods for this city, our own desires. He has already tried to stop me and got a warning. He is his own and his methods do not concern me until they cross me. It's a waste of /precious/ time." Cat and mouse(Bat) is her game to play, and one she has for years, it is now that things have come to an ugly head and they can agree to disagree.

"Like now.." She uses as emphasis when she sits back, dragging claws across the table top as she does so. "It's derailing the conversation and converging at hand. This city needs a black knight, but it also needs an underground order that seeks to rise." Lifting her hand her fingers curl inward. "Even some chaos needs order and to know their place in the pecking."
Two-Face notes the reaction, which is much what he expected. Mel isn't a normal possession, a typical flunkie - she's some sort of ward or relative, a part of Catwoman's family. Someone she doesn't consider disposable. Which makes messing with Mel dangerous, but also, of course, shows Harvey someplace where the Cat feels sentiment. Harvey no longer allows such thing in his life - there is no one or nothing he wouldn't cut to ribbons at the literal flip of a coin.

"Don't worry, I'm not going to take your girl. Just noticed she was…different," he says. Reassuring, if perhaps not entirely a promise.

"What we need is stability. Actual organization, less maniacal mood-swings," he says, which, of course, is rather amusing coming from him. But, for as unpredictable as he is, Harvey's shown himself to have a firm hand at the wheel - his brutality and uncompromising (sometimes to his own detriment) fairness have slowly earned him both respect and trust. His expectations are high, but his men are loyal. At least, as loyal as they can be expected in Gotham.

"I like it when things are black and white. Shades of grey irritate me. I like clean lines, an even split. You and me, we can go halvsies, I think. Black Mask thinks he's a coffin and the clown belongs in one. I don't trust flightless birds or men who wear hats indoors. But cats…cats I can deal with. Sure, there's a chance you'll scratch me, but I can respect your independence and you're at least pretty to have around, which is more'n I can say for the other options."

Catwoman knows she expressed a button to push, gave it away, but there are few of those buttons and a weakness is a strength in more ways then one. A button pushed brought her to this, right here and now. The strongarm of East End held down like a militaristic marshal law, th stretching control of gangs beyond her Alley Cats compiling, and what she will do with the other baggage is yet to be revealed. She has plans, and those wheels are turning as she watches Harvey and listens respectfully. There is no upper hand right now, only toe to toe and nose to nose. Neutrality and both have things to gain.

A slow nod and Amenti returns to Catwoman, leaping from the table to her shoulder to drape itself around her neck, that tail curling to rest in a coil at the hollow of her throat. Even the animal is possessive in its freedom. "The other options are still playing games. Their own games with their own meanings, but they lost sight of the scope outside of their own walls. You and me, Harvey, we have fallen. It is how we rise and what we demand from those ashes that will move us forward."

Pausing her eyes flick over her people, his people, and then land upon the whiskey, unloved and now coveted in a sharpened hand, brought to lips after swirled to coat copper contents along the glass. Smoothing her tongue over lips she sets the glass aside but keeps her hand tipi'd over the top, caught in claws like a crane machine's hold. "East End is mine. Thus far I have people that eliminated those who would do me bad business just outside of my walls, and brought two others into my fold. They move when I say. From what I am gathering now is you and I," Lifting her hand she gestures between them with a snap of her wrist and then that steepled hand comes down upon the table between them. "We need to be on the same page so the chaos ends before it has a chance to even stir. What direction do we push them, then?"

Two-Face considers for a moment, watching the movement of the animals and taking in Selina's rapt attention of the others. He's impressed, but unsurprised. He's seen enough crooks around foolish enough to underestimate women. He never made that mistake. Two sides, after all, and both equal, men and women alike. With so many weak men around, how could anyone doubt that women could be strong? Still, too many dismissed the Cat as a looker reaching beyond her grasp. Harvey could see that wasn't the case - and he could see the shine of ambition in her eyes. Avarice. Greed. Lust. All one side of the same coin. Harvey's side? Hate. Envy. Destruction. Together, they were sex and violence personified.

And both of them would get plenty of money. Oh, yes, there was plenty of that to go around.

"My strength is greatest on the South side," he says, "I bump hips up against you…seems to me, if we take the West side, then we can go full force into the north. A nice, leisurely campaign. Systematic. Block by block. My boys can be the front lines. I got plenty of muscle. You let me flex it. And while I'm punchin' 'em in the face, they'll never notice you and yours sneakin' around the back…not until it's too late…"

People underestimate what appears to be the weaker to them. Some women, others the disabled. They forget it gives them time, loathing and resentment to build upon and how to take what you give them and make it /theirs/. Even the embodiments of such judgement. It sucks to wake up one da and find yourself under the emply and rule of what you once scorned and feared. Good morning my nightmare.

The smile that draws her lips into a full swell of pout givs a haughty look to the woman, one that is rather content and pleased with what she is hearing, seeing, and finding her brain organizing. "Oh, Harvey, I would never deny you flexing what you have. A woman has to stay impressed." A wink to him then and that very feline demeanor is resurfacing amongst the up and coming mob handler. "You and I, we make a neutral truce for our grounds to cross, eliminate threat between eachother to show our people we are combined forces. Let this sink in, let the morale rise while the others watch and learn. They choose to join us, or they face what they are watching form. I will have no pity, if they opt out and we have to approach them and do it the /hard/ way." They came from the ashes of what Gotham tried to make of them, fire is on their side. "We let them think they have a choice bfore we exterminate them. You in their face, me at their backs…" Pause. "I love it."

Two-Face smiles slowly, leaning back in his seat, "Good. I thought you would," he says. He finishes off his cigarette and Samantha extends her arm, the albino woman wincing as he grinds it out into her forearm, "Thank you," she says in a husky voice before stepping back. Harvey reaches down and draws out his coin, rolling it idly over his fingers, letting it dance on his knuckles for a moment until he flicks it up in the air.

"Of course, we can agree all we like, but, there's no hope of anything succeeding without fate on our side," he says, catching the coin for a moment.

"If fate turns against us, we have no hope of success. I might as well just shoot myself," he says. He slowly opens his palm, "But I have a feeling that luck is on our side…"

The slow smile that peels across those lips is a response to his own, her eyes peering from below manicured brow in the lowered uprising of scrutiny upon Two-Face. Her hand draws back and in the retreat captures the glass again with the light scrape of claws over glass. When it comes to her lips she rises with the throw-back. Empty glass now is cast upon the table to swirl and spin on the edge until it clatters to an end. "Don't be so pessimistic, there are many roads to take, we're just taking all of them and making them the main one."

Her arm lifts in an extension to him to take it and walk with her. "Join me Harv. Lets walk this meeting point and watch the blanketed sun set upon our convergence point, hm?"

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