|Clock Tower visit|
|What: Nightwing comes by to check on Barbara.|
The Clock Tower is always a hum with electricity, particular in the hub from which the Oracle works and that's no different tonight than any other. Barbara, seated in the high-backed command chair, looks over the various screens spread out like a digital map of the networks that connect every grid on the planet. Satelite feeds streamed directly to her mainframe from New York, digital code lines that transition into pixilated images from ATM video cameras.. It's all right there for her ever watchful eyes.
That being said, there's much to say about her appearance. Her hair is twisted up into a messy bun at the back of her neck with her glasses perched on the bridge of her nose over a deep purple bruise beneath the right most eye. Along the side of her left temple is a thick bandage that looks like an Alfred special, and she's dressed down in a Captain America 'Shield' t-shirt and cut off shorts. Several yellow-brown bruises line her arms and legs as if she's just gotten back from a bar brawl.
Nightwing knows the codes to get into the Watchtower...and he also knows that Oracle is almost always on-guard and watching to see who is around or entering the building. He knocks only just before he steps into the Tower level proper, still dressed in his costume from his most recent patrols. Once he's sure no one else is around, he pulls off his mask and tucks it into his belt, "What happened to you? Don't tell me Jason broke in again..." didn't they just finish fixing the place back up?
Oracle was monitoring the camera feed from 'inside' the Clock Tower as soon as the proximity alarms alerted her that someone was on the premises. The Clock Tower is one of the few places on earth that even 'Batman' has trouble sneaking about in the dark... There's something to be said for security developed by the former Batgirl, afterall.
When she sees that it's Nightwing, her breath blows out slowly and she hides a little grin even as she goes back to work bringing up various feeds from one particular neighborhood. When the Prodigal son steps in proper, she turns to look over at him and address his question with a shrug, absently touching her fingers to the bandaged wound. "No, anti-mutant fundamentalists attacked the dinner at LexCorp last night. Bombs, I think I got hit with some plaster, but I'm not really sure."
Nightwing never expected to get in stealthily. He just made sure he wasn't seen actually entering the building itself. Once inside, he knew that he'd be seen and he didn't even try to not be. "I got that invitation too, but couldn't go. Titan stuff..." which Oracle is probably aware of seeing as she's the most secret member of the team. "You all right? Did you go to a doctor to make sure that everything's all right?" No giant bits of shrapnel sticking out from places she can't fee? feel?
Barbara nods solumnly, "It's probably better you weren't there, Dick." Said without looking away from the green screen of video feeds. She watches them a little longer, then turns in her chair to face him with the softest of smiles on her unadorned face, "I'm fine, just a headache. I went by the Thompson clinic and there were EMS on scene. Just a minor concussion, nothing I can't walk off." Yes, she knows what she said.
"How are /you/?" She asks this pointedly, leaning forward towards him. "You look like you haven't slept in days."
Nightwing nods, "All right...just so that you went to the clinic and got checked out." He then moves to flop into one of the nearby chairs, "I don't know if I have or not. What day is it?" It's only sort of joking. "Any leads on who was on the attack that we should see get detained? It's such a touchy subject, but that smacks of Terrorism."
Barbara forces a smile and turns her chair back towards the screen, "One better, actually. I followed the signal that triggered the explosions back to one of the groups bases of opperation. They had already left, but we found evidence enough to pinpoint who was responsible." Her fingers pass over the keys of her keyboard expertly, the small sensor bar acting like a switch to allow for throwing objects out of her way as if they were all laid out right infront of her.
An image comes up and she twists it with curled 'tigar claw' fingers that alter the digit representation on the screen. "Humanity's Last Stand. Anti-mutant organization.. at first I thought it might be anti-registration extremists, but..." Motioning, "Sources say not. I've been digging into their organization all day. I should have a few more locations pinpointed by tomorrow, if we're lucky."
"I don't know if the Titans can take them out, to be honest...we still have that kidnapping to deal with and...let's just say we're reorganizing internally." Nightwing grimaces before he slouches down in the chair. "But if I can, I'd like to send folks out. Might not be a bad idea to just see if Batman wants it. Might be too politically charged if a bunch of mutants hit them."
"Bruce is already on it." Babs tells Dick with a nod, glancing over her shoulder. Two fingers brush a rogue strange of fiery hair off the side of her face, "Anything I can help with, with the Titans? I know I'm not 'official' or anything..." What is she 'officially' involved in, these days right? "..but if you need help, I'm there for you. You know that, right?"
Nightwing nods, "Good. I figured he would be." One less thing for him to worry about although he wouldn't mind being involved in that one. Sounds much easier than what is currently afoot. "We have the security footage from STAR Labs...I've asked the Justice League to help. Twenty people were killed and a member of my team kidnapped...not to mention the earlier attack which stripped one of her magic sword and put another into a coma. I don't know who these people are or how to go after them...the only other one who had information up and left the team."
"Who was the one who left?" Babs asks with a small frown. She reaches up and removes her glasses, setting them down on the edge of her desk so her eyes are free to lightly massage the inside corners of her eyes. "I'll take a look at the video feed from STAR labs and see if I can't find anything that might have been missed. The small details, though.. did they 'specifically' steal a magical sword?" Peeking at him from between her fingers, "And who did they kidnap?"
"Magik left. Her sword got stuck inside Stonewall...who is the one who was comatose and kidnapped," Nightwing explains. It's a mess. "I think they specifically stole Stonewall but having the sword was just another way to make getting him back harder."
"Stonewall." Barbara turns back to her computer and chomps down on a pencil which she absently chews on while looking over what she has on the Titan. Brow furrowing thoughtfully, she can offer only a single shoulder shrug, "Have you tried cornering Magik and talking to her? I know it seems farfetched, but if you know what her sword is 'capable of' you have an edge on the enemy, who might not?" It's likely things he's already thought of, but she's trying to help at least. "Let me know when you plan your next move, I'll provide some overwatch for the team on the mission."
"Believe me, Babs. I have. Her sword helps contain the demons in Limbo and she's very morose without it." Nightwing gives a sigh, "Maybe it was part of the attack, maybe it was to insure that she would have less power to go after him to help get Stonewall back. It's a mess and I don't know half of what's going on and tracking them has proven to be quite difficult. We'll get it done though...with your overwatching and help from the JLA. I'm confident of that."
"Good." Barbara turns away from her screens to face Grayson fully and reaches down to pull her legs up beneath her in the chair. She's wearing an easy, if strained, smile. The kind that's genuine even though it's having to shine through a layer of pain. "You've always been the bright eyed one, Dick. It bothers me when you're not laughing or telling a joke. I kind of gauge how bad things are by how you react to them..."
"Things are bad," Dick admits. "I blame myself for a lot of it." He's not going to whine, though. "It'll get fixed somehow...I don't know what will break because of it, but it'll get fixed." He reaches up a gloved hand to rub at the bridge of his nose this time, "Did Alfred tell you I brought home a kitten?" Looks like it's time to change the subject.
Barbara's brow curls inward as he openly admits to things being a lot worse, even than they appear and offers not but a small nod. The obvious topic change isn't lost on her and while she might usually not let it slide so easily, does in this case. Both hands settle in her lap with her knuckles curled into the palm of her other hand, "He didn't mention it, no... but I bet he's beside himself with joy." Smirking, sarcastic, she does her best Alfred impression which isn't 'terrible', really, "Master Dick, what do you expect me to feed this animal?"
Nightwing actually manages a smirk at that, "I brought cat food! I didn't leave him entirely in the lurch. I got food, a litter box and toys...said he could keep the stuff in my room. Cute thing though...I could bring her by sometime if you want." It also means he gets back to Gotham more to visit the kitten. Wouldn't be good to leave something so young around that giant, lonely Manor. Oh, wait...
"Last I heard, it's been trying to figure out how to get into the cave."
"Sure, you know I don't mind having strays running around." Babs, mostly, jokes but the Clock Tower has become something of a refugee haven since Jason attacked. It might make her a 'little' sour about it, but not so much that she can't easily keep her smile in place. "Hah, I'm sure Bruce would just be 'beside' himself with joy." Yes, she's repeated that, even the imitation that goes along with it, "Get that thing out of my cave." Smirking all sardonically and leaning back in her chair.
Nightwing's smirk grows a little more relaxed, "I've thought about bringing her down, but there might be too many things for her to get into that could hurt her down there. Not to mention the bats." Even if the kitten did have her rabies shot. "Still have to figure out a name for her. I can't just be calling her 'Kitten', can I? Seems unfair."
"Par for the course, wouldn't you think?" Babs jokes, slipping her arms out and over the sides of the arm rest, "'Batman' 'Nightwing', not like we've been terrible imaginative sofar.. might as well stick with what works." Obviously teasing them. "Bring the kitty around, we'll come up with a name for her." Maybe it's just an excuse to get him to come around more often, in the end.
Nightwing snorts, "Nightwing is far more creative than 'Batman'. Even 'Robin' was more creative. What about 'Batgirl', hmm?" If she's going to poke fun, so will he! Stifling a yawn he then nods, "All right. I can bring her over...just don't run over her tail. I'd like to get her socialized to more people. I don't know that just Alfred and Damian really count, you know? But she's a cuddly little thing." Seems that he's rather taken with the little critter.
"Hey now, Batgirl was a step forward in naming precidence. First girl member of the boys club..." Babs wiggles her thumbs towards herself with a sarcastic smirk and perked brow stare at Grayson, "This girl..." once her palms slap down on the arms of her chair, "And besides that, 'Oracle', hello... I learned from mistakes, mister guy." Still riding the wave of her 'successful comeback' she nods, "I'll be careful, Dick. She'll be too busy purring like a crazy cat in my lap for me to run over her tail."
"Yeah, well...that's because we thought you were cute." Yes, Dick is totally teasing now. "Oracle -is- a better name. Almost as good as 'Nightwing'." Now he's grinning for real. Back to the kitten, "She's a pretty loud purrer, too...and you're right. She might be sleeping in your lap once she explores every corner of the Tower."
"'were' cute..." Barbara mock huffs and crosses her arms over Captain America's shield, "I'll have you know that I'm still just as adorable now as I ever was then." She can tease right back, "Besides, you were like.. what four? How would you know what cute was?" And give as good as she gets. Grinning all the while. "Plenty of Tower to explore..." She says as she glances around, leaning forward in her chair with both hands bent over the edge of the arm rest for support, "Might do everyone some good just to have something other than computers humming." Sure, she finds them comforting, but everyone doesn't think like she does.
"I wasn't four! When I was four, I was still with the Circus!" He wasn't 'adopted' until he was around twelve, anyhow. Dick glances around the Tower as if noting the computer humming, "Do I have to drag you out for Thai food again? Although with the bruises, people might think I beat you or something. But you -are- getting out, right? Other than to LexCorp dinners?"
"I guess?" Babs says after laughing quietly at his defense of his age, even covering her mouth a little and wiping the remnants of her grin away when the topic of her getting out is posed, "Some. I try to, at least. I've been thinking I might need a vacation here in the near future, but where would I find the time for that?" Motioning distantly to the computer screens with a backwards flick of her hand. "But yeah, I go to the park at least once a week."
Nightwing still seems rather pleased with himself for that simple defense. Not that it really means all that much, but it's a little thing that isn't getting shoved down his throat. Sometimes it's all that it takes. "Where would you go on Vacation? I mean, you'd have to -go- somewhere...because I can't see you just staying at home and not somehow finding your way back to working. Call me crazy." He looks again at the computers, "As Tim to monitor while you're gone?"
Babs bobs her head from side to side at the proposal and shrugs, "I guess he probably could, if anyone could. But I wouldn't know where to go anyways, so it's a moot point, really. Once everything calms down a bit, I'll give it more thought. Besides, the Gordon family reunion is in December, so there's always /that/ I can plan to take part in." Or use an excuse to not do anything until then... when she will come up with another excuse not to go. Vicious cycle.
"Go some place warm? Some place with...nice autumnal leaves? Europe?" Dick just points out suggestions. "And where's that reunion going to be? Here? Not really a vacation if you ask me." He then leans forward himself and looks at Barbara, "Things never calm down here. Don't you know that by now?"
Ofcourse she knows that, that's half the reason she uses it as a standby excuse. Babs quirks a slight frown on one side of her mouth and nods, but shakes her head immediately there after, like she changed her mind mid-thought. "Oh, no it's a camping trip this year. Not sure if dad's going or not, but we're 'suppose' to go to Yellow Stone. We'll see if either of us show up. Not like the family would be all that surprised."
"Yellowstone would be cool. I've never been there...but...in December? Camping? Really?" That part doesn't strike him as 'fun'. "Skiing, maybe, but...camping? Maybe you shouldn't go. Or suggest they camp in Arizona by the Grand Canyon instead if it's in December. That sounds...not at all fun." But then again, Dick has been rather spoiled in the last twelve years.
"It's this whole 'survival' thing my cousins are into these days. I blame discovery channel." Also blames her player for not thinking about how unnaturally cold that would be. Babs shrugs and laughs, "I could reasonably see myself enjoying some snow mobiling just for the heck of it. But I could do that around here or at least upstate New York. Wouldn't even have to buy a plane ticket. So score."
"Snowmobiling there would probably be incredible. And sledding...they get more snow than here and...why go to Upstate New York when you can fly for just as long and be some place that's absolutely stunning?" There's a shrug then before Nightwing continues, "'Survival' is not 'vacation'. Tell them you'll be staying in a hotel or an RV camper and you'll meet them for the events."
"Oh, you can rest yourself assuredly that Barbara Gordon is not sleeping in a tent on the side of any snow peaked mountains or by a frozen lake... Especially if either of these places does not have a constant internet connection so I can blog about how terrible it is." Babs crosses her arms in a 'na'gunna happen' manner and shakes her head vehemently. "Because I've got a limit to how much I'm willing to put up with and I don't need or want to learn how to fish at this juncture in my life. Not during summer and not out of a frozen lake. No, thank, you." Grinning and glancing back at her screen with a little sigh that almost 'eats' her jovial expression when something pops up near the bottom corner of the huge displays. "uh oh..." Turning and bringing up the image, "Looks like there's a hostage situation in Bryantown.." Peeking back at Nightwing, "Want me to route police? Or....?" Do you want to take it..
"Ice fish," Nightwing points out. "In December, it would be ice-fishing. Different. Probably much more boring. I don't even like regular fishing." It's just not something that was ever in his background. He reaches out to pat Barbara's arm when she mentions not sleeping anywhere without an internet connection, "Good girl." Pausing at the report of the hostages, he gives a sigh and reaches for his mask. "I'll go, but route the police too. Give me a ten minute start..."
Barbara nods and reaches for her glasses. She slips them on before going to work on the keyboard with a near blinding speed, pulling up all sorts of menus and subroutines to encrypt messages around the GCPD database firewalls. "Hey, Dick?" Looking at him in the reflective surface of the screen, "Come by more, huh? I miss you, you know?" Smiling that same genuine, but pain masked smile. Already she's routing coordinates into the domino masks HUD, ||"I am in your ear, Tigar. You have nine minutes and fourty five seconds before the Police response."||