|"Enter the Dragnet!", or, "A Bird, a Gargoyle, and a Bat meet on rooftop..."|
|What: Prabhakar is called by Huntress for a follow-up, Batwoman investigates, Dragnet drops in, and Mandrake makes a brief appearance.|
It's fully dark in Gotham, though not really that much past sunset. Huntress called Prabhakar to meet her on a convenient rooftop near the main highway leading out of of the city, actually having remembered the unusual-looking doctor's comments about his vision, such as it is. So she waits, looking out toward the multi-lane highway.
A late night meeting on a rooftop really isn't the most odd meeting Prabhakar has had n his short career in New York City, he ponders as he soars a handful of yards above the rooftops, eyes narrowed as he looks around. The problem with heat is that it dissipates too much after too short a distance, so he can't be too far up. Medical bag in hand, he banks a little to the north-west, wings fluttering quietly--and then he sees her. Or at least he's pretty sure it's her. While there are a lot of people who prefer rooftops to sidewalks, not many of them, he'd imagine, would be just standing around. He aims for her rooftop, where he'll land gently a few yards from her.
Mandrake peers out the Window of a Taxi driving down the Multilane Highway. Mandrake leans back in his seat as he idly looks out into the dark night, the soft sounds of foreign music play inside the cab. The Magician tugs at the cuffs of his shirt, resituating something. "Hmmm...card holder seems to be on the fritz..." He muses to himself. "I wonder if that table and young woman had..." His soft musing is punctured as something catches his attention. "Stop the cab!" He shouts as he bangs on the glass separating him from the taxi driver. "I'll get off here..." He says as he slips the Taxi Driver enough money for the the fare and a generous tip. Standing outside the cab, he stares up on a building. "Something is up there..."
Batwoman has been out for a little while. She's still just patrolling at this point, moving from alleyways to rooftops as she continues to work on reacquainting herself with the city. She's one building over from Huntress' meeting when she sees movement in her peripheral vision, and changes course to investigate.
Huntress hears bat-like wings and turns to watch Prabhakar land a short distance away on the same rooftop. She takes a couple of steps closer and says in a normal tone of voice that won't carry past the edges of the building, "Thank you for agreeing to meet me."
After settling on the roof, Prabhakar's wings ruffle a bit, then fold themselves behind his back and curl over his shoulders. The talons at the apex of each wing meet over his chest, wings hanging loosely like a cloak. He smiles at the woman, giving her a small and respectful bow. Of course, madam," he replies in the usual friendly tone. "I was only too happy to receive your call. I understand you have received further care from your companion, yes?" This is just basic abductive reasoning, based on the more normal-ish pattern of her heat signature, and a bit of common sense. Someone she trusted enough to go with, Prabhakar can't imagine /not/ helping her to rest and heal up.
Mandrake stares up at the building as he hears commotion, it is faint, but enough to peak his curiosity. He pulls out a small cell phone and dials. "Lothar...tell them I will be late for the show...car trouble." He hangs up the phone, moving around the building looking for an unlocked door.
From her position in the shadows of the other roof, Batwoman watches with some surprise. Huntress' acquaintance is, after all, unexpected. She listens for a moment, getting the gist of the conversation from the odd man's comments. And after a minute, she steps out of those shadows to ask, a curious smile on her face, "Odd place to be visiting a physician, is it not?"
Huntress shrugs lightly to Prabhakar. "Something like that. I..." At another person's footfall and voice, she turns and pulls her crossbow to aim at the woman with the speed of an old west gunslinger.
Wings rustle in a show of mild consternation, and Prabhakar's brows lift as the woman steps out of the shadows. He also stays right where he is, letting the woman with the actual combat experience take the lead, if it comes down to it--but hopefully it won't come down to it. "Yes," he says, holding his left hand out, palm out, the medical bag held out by his right. "It is, but I do believe that sometimes doctors should still make house calls..." A small, if nervous, smile there. We're all friends, here! No need for shooting and punching.
Mandrake finds a door being guarded by a Security Guard. For the briefest of moments, Mandrake's fingers dance rapidly in front of the guard, but he stops. Shaking his head. He gives the guard a few minutes to clear his head. Mandrake pitches a story about leaving a gift for his wife in the building. The guard takes pity on Mandrake and lets him. Seizing the opportunity, Mandrake ducks in looking for a staircase that leads up.
Batwoman's hands go up, she quickly makes sure she is standing in the light to show that she's harmless. For now, anyway. Smiling at the doctor, she nods a little, "True. Though I wager to guess this isn't your house?" Her eyes shift briefly to Huntress, then back. She waits to see if the crossbow will be lowered before taking the offered hand.
Huntress takes in Batwoman's attire and relaxes, reholstering her crossbow and stepping to one side so she's not between the other vigilante and the doctor. "No. I chose this building because of its proximity to the highway."
As the situation seems to lose its tension, so, too, does Prabhakar. Yes, no shooting and punching tonight. That's definitely a good thing. He lowers his hands as Huntress steps aside, saying, "It is merely a convenient location. I am still rather unfamiliar with Gotham, as my primary residence, as well as the clinic I work for, in Manhattan. I do have a card..." With the old don't-shoot-me trick of using only his first two fingers, he reaches into an inner pocket of his suit coat to pull out a business card. Cheap and plain, it has the address, phone number, and so on of the county clinic in Hell's Kitchen. He goes to--slowly, so as to not seem like something worth punching--step closer to Batwoman to offer it to her.
Batwoman nods to Huntress when the crossbow is lowered. She smiles as she takes the card, looking it over briefly before sliding it into her belt. "Doctor... Bhattach?" She asks, her accent close but slightly off. "Its been some years since I met anyone from India. Pleased to meet you doctor. I'm Batwoman."
Huntress watches the introductions, nodding to Batwoman as she introduces herself. "Huntress," she tells the other masked woman, then looks at Prabhakar to see how he's handling this. After all, the last time she saw the doctor he was rather ... unsettled from having to drive a car.
And the winged mutant is handling this much better than trying to /drive/. Though, really, there's not a whole lot that would be further out of his field of experience than attempting to drive. To the redheaded woman, he smiles warmly and gives a small and polite bow, saying, "It has been some time since I have been in India, so I can sympathize." There's a light touch of lament, there; it's natural, though, as anyone would miss their home and their family. "And I am most pleased to make your acquaintance as well, Batwoman." He did notice her rather close accent when she said the shortened form of his last name, itself taken as a sign of friendliness--which really only helps to relax him that much more.
Batwoman nods again, this time to acknowledge the introduction. "Ah, a fitting title." She glances at the crossbow with a smile, which is also turned to the doctor. "So may I take it then that you are offering your services to those who... wish not to have to register with hospitals?" She glances over Huntress curiously as she asks.
Huntress only speaks Italian and Latin, so can't really contribute to the current conversation. She does notice, though, that the doctor seems much more at ease around Batwoman. That's only for the better, because she does feel bad about how her first encounter with Prabhakar went. She's trying to not visibly favor her left arm, but when she goes to cross her arms out of habit it's difficult to conceal a wince. Damnit. Forgetting sucks.
"Well," says Prabhakar, "I do not believe that good health should only be afforded to those with money, or those without families to fear for..." A somewhat oblique reference to the main need for a mask in the first place. "As for madam Huntress, here--" he turns to indicate her--and catches that wince. Doctor Mode activated. He immediately forgets about being mid-conversation with Batwoman as he concentrates on Huntress. "The arm is still bothering you, yes?" he says, moving to her left side with a focused look on his face as he opens his medical bag. "Have you kept the bandages dry and fresh? Are you taking your Tylenol? Have you been refraining from using the arm whenever possible?"
Batwoman notices the wince, but the doctor steps in before she can say anything. And in respect of Huntress' privacy (and pride) she decides to stay out of it. So, instead of watching, she moves to the edge of the roof and takes up a scouting position, scanning the streets below and the rooftops nearby while the doctor does his work.
Huntress sighs and rolls her eyes as the questions start flying. "Yes, Mother." And to illustrate, she starts carefully removing her left glove, revealing that her forearm is neatly bandaged from elbow to wrist. Though honestly, she can't have been refraining from using her left arm that much if she's up on this rooftop.
"Hmph," mutters Prabhakar, about the only time he'd take such a tone with someone who can so easily twist him into a pretzel. "If you persist in stressing the wound, it will not heal properly--and it will take longer to heal as well." Narrowing his eyes, he studies the warmth radiating from the wound. He really doesn't like the way the wound is still as open as it is. And at least he doesn't have to unwrap the thing to look at it. It would be clearer if he wasn't trying to study heat radiating from bandages, but it's easier on her if he doesn't unwrap the thing. He glances over to Batwoman, in her scouting-and-peering-and-scanning position near the edge of the roof, somewhat apologetic for having cut the conversation short with her now that he thinks of it, but--the patient must come first.
From her position at the roof ledge, Batwoman smiles a little to herself. Unable to help it anymore, she glances back to comment, "If you're planning on helping people like us in the future, Doc, I suggest you get used to your patients stressing their wounds. I doubt any of us will be willing to rest for long."
Huntress says, "Especially since my motorcycle's clutch is on the left handlebar." Really, she could be doing worse than that. It's just... annoying. "It's a lot better than a few days ago."
Gotham is probably Dragnet's least favorite city. Being a Metropolis native, he grew up in that hopey changey environment that breeds liberals and hipsters ad nauseum. It, along with New York, also seem to have a common theme: at least five times out of ten, trouble is caused by something beyond the scope of humanity. For some reason, its easier to rationalize someone going mad from an experimental super drug, or an alien invasion, or goose stepping extranational terrorists with an entirely unrealistic world view. In Gotham, its the fecking Lord of the Flies, where nine times out of ten people are human, desperate, ore just don't give a damn. Sometimes they have special tricks or a gimmick, but they are often too human for Dragnet's liking...though with his status as a Bird (Girl....Male...something something glass ceiling equal opportunity power), its more or less become home. The young man behind the nanomolecular faceplate is not thrilled. Then again, he seldom is: he is often begging to get off the ride, only to find out the roller coaster is three times the length advertised and with two more hidden drops.
All of this narration aside, he creeps through Gotham under the cover of stealth, using technology to mask himself above and beyond the traditional prowling abilities of Gotham's top dogs on the food chain, Vigilanticus Grimmus Broodicus. Soft footsteps made momentarily harsher as he leaps from rooftop to rooftop, before he comes upon a scene of a wounded woman, a snarking Bat, and a medico that looks something out of a Hellboy comic. For now they look friendly, he even recognizes Batwoman from the limited information granted by their mutual benefactor, that Handsome Doctor Man known as Oracle. He only catches the tail end of the conversation, but its enough to convince him to drop out from under the cover of dynamic camouflage. "Lets not antagonize a source of lifestyle-friendly healthcare." He holds up his hands in a conciliatory manner, apparently trying hard to draw associations from one Bat Femme to an equally spookybutt male counterpart. "Also.....a rooftop? Really? It seems like no one does things at ground level anymore. Can you even practice medicine at this altitude, Doctor?" The tech armored vigilante queries, already scanning about for possible threats. He isn't that supernaturally tuned, or that prescient, he just expects Life to want to kick him in the face at any moment.
"Get a new motorcycle," is Prabhakar's answer to Huntress for that bit of it, given with a confidence that comes from being really in his most comfortable environment--tending to those who need him. To Batwoman, he chuckles quietly and says, "I sometimes think 'people like you' need more reminding, not le--" He cuts himself off when the armored one makes his appearance, and the winged mutant looks up to him curiously. No traces of the man's heat until he appeared. That's--impressive, really. And, to a man who only sees /in/ heat, more than a little scary.
Straightening, he arches a brow as he looks to the man. "I can practice even higher in the sky," he points out with a small smile, unfolding his wings and stretching them out behind him a little, complete with a little shake. Being surrounded by people who are actually trying to be friendly, even while in costumes, is helping to put him at ease--though he knows all too well how easily /that/ could change.
Batwoman is chuckling when they are joined by yet another eavesdropper. Straightening, she regards the newcomer warily. His manner of introduction calls a similar raised brow from her. "You look familiar." She says, after a quick glance at the doctor's wings, "You're associated with Oracle, yes? I believe I remember seeing that suit before."
"They're all made that way," Huntress tells Prabhakar with a frown. How dare he suggest she REPLACE her Ducati? Then the armored man shows up and the doctor flares his wings and both together startle her into pulling and aiming her crossbow to rival Billy the Kid. Of course, with Prabhakar the Gargoyle standing very much inside her sphere of personal space, she's probably aiming the crossbow past the doctor's shoulder and wing to level it at the newcomer. Twitchy much? Batwoman mentions Oracle, but that's not enough (yet) to make her lower her aim. Yet.
He's not completely invisible to thermal imaging. Roughly parallel on either side of his feet, a trail of heat might bloom even hotter than one might expect for a rooftop in the middle of the night. Being invisible to the eye is all well and good, but to erase traces of ones heat, ones radiation even temporarily? That is what makes the AIDOS's camouflage technology a cut above. "Dragnet. Nice to meet you." Of course, it would be nicer if....oh, crossbow. fantastic. His hands go up in classic 'I surrender' mode. "Yeah. I hear they call me Dragnet." He certainly didn't come up with a codename, nor did he particularly want to be in the masked hero business. Masked heroes and vigilantes tend to go splat. Yet it was either that or receive the Batman kipposh on moving within gods know how many miles of Gotham...so there was not much in the way of choice. "The big glowing head talks about you too. Batwoman, right? No relation to he of gravelly voice and no sense of humor?" Some might call it bold, saying such things about the Dark Knight in his own city, but Dragnet already has a crossbow pointed at him and whatever else these ladies can fish out of their fishnets (no pun originally intended.) Really, if its a choice between invoking the wrath of the Bat God in the long term, or risking mortality in the short? Self preservation dictate he choose the former. It doesn't dawn on him that his arsenal is a touch more formidable, his armor is on the thicker side, and HE CAN BECOME INVISIBO! He is confronted with hotness. Hotness that does not trust him or wants to shoot him. "You know, to sort of be alone with two very lovely ladies who seem to be perfectly willing to do harm to me is sending all sorts of mixed signals to my brain, so for the sake of my already warped notion of love and attraction can we put the weapons down?" Yep. Babbling. In the face of these sorts of things...never fails. Vaguely Deadpoolish, really.
Well, the man can certainly talk. Quite a bit. More than Prabhakar can really keep up with, but it does have the likely intended effect of helping keep the situation calm, at least from the doctor's perspective. Arching a brow again, he looks between the women, from the one that seems to know the newcomer to the one who obviously doesn't. And he makes sure to keep any parts of himself out of the way. Wings tend to work with startlingly less effectiveness when they have holes in them, after all. To Huntress, he says, somewhat quietly, "I believe he does not mean harm. It does seem as our other companion knows him, after all, and if he wanted to harm any of us, he could have done so rather easily while he was still--invisible." That's the word, right? It's not exactly a word one comes across or uses very often when one can't see in the same way most others can, after all. At least the man is radiating something closer to a normal trail of heat, so that helps. For some reason, out of all the ways vigilantes have to be odd or not-quite-normal, it's being truly invisible to him that makes the doctor the most off-put.
Oddly enough, Dragnet's question earns him a laugh from Batwoman rather than censure. Leaning back against the ledge in a purposefully casual manner, she replies, "Not really, no. Just the symbol." Her head tilts as she concedes, "Well, and the fact that since I work in 'his' town," Her hands raise to form air-quotes, "I have to be a part of his team. Which hasn't meant much yet." She still hasn't even met the guy!
Huntress's eyes flick over to Prabhakar then Batwoman then to Dragnet, and finally the crossbow is lowered again though more slowly than when it was aimed at Batwoman. "You people are bad for my blood pressure," is her only comment.
"You two are the ones with the actual talent for this sort of thing. I'm just a dumb schmuck who accidentally grabbed the Longjohns of Invisibility." Okay, so maybe thats unkind. The armor has demonstrated at least the intelligence of a non-retarded house cat, and the more he sees the more Dragnet has come to the conclusion that maybe, just maybe, he isn't as screwed as he thought he was....just mostly. He trails from one foot from the next, walking the center so to speak as he surveys the Gotham skyline and then looks at the two women. "El Commandante, he tolerate no cowls unsanctioned by him in his city, is what I am told. Sometimes I question that, given the way some individuals pass through here, but I am not about to look free backup in the mouth, or pick a fight with the man seemingly equipped for every disaster and contingency. I would just as soon as have him nod my head as try to stick a batarang in my backside." He's not snarky, he is entirely too sincere about the way he addresses this. Even if Batman doesn't intend to kill, who knows if all his batarangs are sterile? "You think you are bad? I've been nudged into a gang of gorgeous crime busters with heavy weapons and a penchant for street violence, I'm asked to sneak around in broad daylight because apparently no other vigilante stays awake past four in the morning, and I routinely meet things that make me question my faith in humanity, my sanity, or my bladder control." Yes, he said it. He's honest about it. In a way, its his best 'weakness is a strength': he will always be honest with himself that when push comes to shove, he is a wuss.
And the conversation nearly completely loses Prabhakar, which he realizes is actually just fine since he can tell the other man is playing more to the females in his audience. That makes him smile a bit lopsidedly, as he turns back to tend to Huntress' arm. "I do not suppose you know this--Commandante person, hmm?" he asks her as he looks back to her arm. "I do not read enough newspapers to--keep all of the, ah, mask-wearers straight, I must confess." At least the wound looks like it will heal, even if he may have to pester her about trying to not use that arm. At least she seems to understand where his pestering comes from, so there's that.
Batwoman can't help it, she raises a hand to her mouth to hide the laugh. "If you don't want to, you could always turn in the, ah, armor and go home?" Her tone as she speaks suggests that she's really only saying it to hear his reaction. Grinning, she adds in a far more teasing tone, "Though I admit, working with gorgeous crime busters has never been much of a problem for me."
Huntress looks back at her arm when Prabhakar does, then thinks about his question. "I think he means the Bat. But I'm not entirely sure." Of course, her own nickname for Batman probably won't make anything any clearer for the doctor. "You done prodding at my arm, doc?"
"I'm actually safer in it and around folks like you than I would be without it. I got baggage. Its just different, actually _looking_ for trouble now. Requires a different modus operandi." Ah, a window into Dragnet's life, his eternal soul perhaps, the eternal downpour of the intelligent but perpetually fearful mind of the man inside the helmet. Also on the list is a set of cast iron cajones, something that is still a work in progress for the stealth contingent of the Birds of Prey. He does not exclude Prabhakar intentionally, but he lacks a gun or a crossbow. The babbling and the flattery and the nervousness kicks in when he notices the tools of violence. Prabhakar could be dangerous, but he is also.....Handsome If You Like Tall Dark and Demonic Doctor Man. Doctors tend to be a lot lower on the list of things that want to hit Dragnet than women, and even scarier, women vigilantes. "I mean the Bat. I sometimes think he runs this place like its his own private fief, good intentioned or not. Is it good that we all have a code of rules? Sure. Is it better that we hang together than hang separately? Definitely. But....we aren't out of work yet. If anything, the job just seems to be getting more demanding." Example given: Dragnet. Upgraded from purse snatchers and single muggers to tracing human trafficking and the occasional HYDRA/Loki/Monster To Come out of the Sewers attack. Not that he would ever say it to the Bats face. He likes his spine unbroken. "He's a doctor. Doctors prod. Its sort of their thing. Like pew pewing with the crossbow is yours."
It takes a moment for Prabhakar to figure out what Dragnet means by "pew pewing", but when he does he has to chuckle a bit. "This is true, he says. It can be, in that sense, somewhat similar." Growing serious again, he straightens once more and gives Huntress a nod. "But, yes, I am in fact done--prodding at your arm. It is, despite your continued use of it, healing at an acceptable rate. I must still advise quite strongly that you reduce the use of that arm whenever possible, even accepting being a passenger on your motorcycle if you must. You might be surprised how even the smallest of things can make a wound turn truly bad. But, that aside, I also have more bandages and pain-killers if you need them." And with that, he goes to start digging around his medical bag some, to bring out those very items.
Batwoman nods in agreement with Dragnet, her grin remaining on her face. She turns her attention away from him, though, to watch the doctor curiously. "Just wait 'till she breaks a leg or something." She says playfully, "No doubt you'll still be trying to keep her off that motorcycle. And no doubt." She winks at the other woman, "She'll be just as deadly with that 'pew pew-er' of hers."
Huntress levels a LOOK at Dragnet. One that clearly states even past the mask that she is not amused. "Dude. You talk too much." She looks at the doctor again. "No, I'm good. Really." She's mostly used to dealing with injuries on her own, and has now had both the Gargoyle and Dr. Thompkins at that clinic downtown fussing at her. It's honestly a little annoying. Oh, great, and now the ginger's getting in on the act. "And if I do? What're you gonna do, put a boot on my bike? Get a sidecar and make me ride there like a wannabe Robin?" Her tone is only mostly defensive. There's a bit of joking under there too.
Thats why Dragnets armor obscures the entire face. Because that look is damn scary on many levels, and it makes him look dark and mysterious even if he does sometimes succumb to talking too much or trying to appease the most threatening party in the room. "Look. Apparently we are going to be working together so...I'm sorry. I talk a lot less when I'm in stealth mode, I promise." Its one of the highlights, really. No one expects him to talk a lot whilst invisible. Even though he can hold conversations, people don't need to know that. "I just get nervous, with new people, and I have to get used to the fact my...friends now are either cowls or capes who seem....so damn cool. I'm still trying to find my feet, and trying to not screw it up for everybody." Though the talk of motorcycles does get him to lighten up a bit. "Could be worse. At least Robin got to learn all this early. Me, I've been trying to stitch all this together in the last three months. I'd gladly ride sidecar if I could learn something out of it." Or not exaggerate injuries. Huntress is a total boss, and Dragnet may be smitten just a bit, with her pain tolerance and dedication at least. Though of course any little feeling of that sort is crushed by the soul smiting, blabber inducing, wide-eyed, frantic gesturing fear he feels in her presence even when she is injured. The LOOK. Yes, it pierces him to the core! With that though, he salutes, and walks to the edge of the roof. "You all have a good night. I'm going to go see if I can go suppress some petty crime or something. Something easier on the nerves." And with that, he disappears just as he came, and skulks away in much the same manner.
And the doctor just kind of stares at the talkative helmeted one as his chatter-ish nature seems to kick up a notch. He must be nervous, indeed, Prabhakar thinks as the man heads to the edge of the roof. He actually understands that reaction, though for him it seems to mean he quiets up. It's still the way the man's very heat signature cuts out completely that rather unnerves him. That sort of thing--most people just don't think about it. Ah, well. Trying to put that bit out of his mind, he pulls out some more packages of gauze, Ace bandages, and a handful of those small packets of Tylenol, saying, "Umm, yes, well--here are some more bandages if you require them. And I cannot stress enough the value of keeping that arm rested..."
Again, Batwoman just laughs. "I'd probably help you." She retorts amusedly. She offers Dragnet a simple nod as he leaves, chuckling quietly when he's gone. As the doctor hands out materials she pushes away from the ledge, "Chatterbox he may be. But I think he had the right idea." She smiles to each, "Doctor, hopefully I'll see you again sometime. Huntress, hopefully our next meeting won't start with a crossbow aimed at me." Grinning, she then heads back into the shadows she came from, and returns to her patrolling.
Huntress watches Chatman depart, then pulls her glove hastily back into place before accepting the first aid supplies from the doctor, having to find places on her belt to stash them. She's not used to returning home with MORE than she originally packed in those belt pouches. "Thanks, doc," she says to Prabhakar more quietly, then looks at Batwoman. "We'll see," is her reply about brandishing her crossbow at the redhead. Then, it's just the Gargoyle there. "I should probably get going too. Staying in one place too long is kinda chancy around here. You gonna make it home okay, doc?"
"You do have my card if you require any medical assistance," Prabhakar calls after Batwoman just before she leaves. Turning his attention back to Huntress, he gives her a friendly smile as he closes his bag up again. Holding it in both hands in front of him, he says, "Yes, I will make it home quite alright, I am sure, though I do thank you for your concern. Thankfully, whatever trouble happens in the streets of the cities do not usually go very far above them, hmm?" He gives her a small and polite bow, there, wings unfolding once again as he takes a few steps back. He'll let her leave first, though--just in case. It would just be like these cities for something to happen just after he leaves.
Huntress nods to Prabhakar. "Good to know. I get the feeling you'd not make a very good bike passenger." She smiles briefly then and walks to one edge of the rooftop away from where both Batwoman and Dragnet departed, and gingerly sets a zip line bolt into her crossbow. "Later, doc." She fires off the bolt and, keeping her left arm protected per doctor's orders, she's off the roof and gone from view.