Requiem in Pace

July 17, 2015:

Red Robin tracks Red Hood down to the Gotham Cemetary and the two have a battle of morals.

Gotham Cemetary

Gotham Cemetary - Creepy, Gothic, Night-time

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: [* ]


Fade In…

The soft whine of the supercharged engine of the Redbird, Tim's heavily modified Ducati motorcycle splits the relative stillness of the night as he comes barrelling down the road. It's not often that he finds himself out here in this guise. There's not much work to be done here. But he's tracking down the remnants of an tacer isotope he had dusted the guy in the red helmet with. Maybe that's what he'll call him. Red Helmet.

The bike comes rolling to a stop, and Tim steps off of it. He doesn't even need to use a kickstand, as apparently, it's gyroscopic balance system keeps it upright. It's like a weeble wobble. It can wobble but it won't fall down.

Tim pulls of his helmet, leaving only that inky black cowl to cover his face. He shifts the view of his tracker from the HUD placed into the windscreen of his bike to directly on the lenses of his mask.

"Alright, now… where are you…"

That helmet seems to be giving Red Robin a merry chase all over Gotham. However, it seems now to be near…and no doubt the tracker will guide him closer to the Gotham Cemetary. Indeed, the owner of the helmet seems to be within the Cemetary. There are no tracks of any sort of wheeled vehicle, or even any obvious footprints that might indicate someone is there.

And, being Gotham and night, it's not the cheeriest of places to be.

I ain't afraid of no ghosts.

Tim follows the beacon, simutaneously keeping alert for any unusual things that might indicate a trap or ambush. As he nears the wrought iron fence surrounding the cemetery, he makes a full on sprint, running up the bars and flipping himself over the top.

This isn't the best place for a battle. Bruce, in fact, would hate to know that something might go down here. Where his parents are buried. Where… Tim's parents are buried. His lips become a thin, straight and bloodless line as he stalks forward, keeping himself to the darkest shadows cast by the various statued headstones and mausoleums.

"He's got to be around here, somewhere…"

The Red Helmet is, indeed, in the cemetary. In fact, it's resting, rather casually on the top of a somewhat simple, stone headstone not too far from the Wayne Family Plot. It is not, however, attached to anyone's head. It's just a helmet. Some headstones may have rocks placed on top or flowers on the plot and this has the helmet, with traces of the dust still on the back of it.

Tim will make his approach, though now, he's being more careful and alert for an ambush. This smells of a trap. He cycles through his cowl's vision modes, settling on ultrasound. This paints the world in black and white, and isn't exactly crystal clear, but the high frequency sound that his cowl emits is strong enough to pierce even stone, to see if someone might be hiding.

His other concern is explosives. What if the helmet is rigged to explode when moved. Or when someone gets within proximity? He'll scan it, looking for any hint of known explosive materials.

There are no explosives on the helmet. It's not rigged…nor are any of the gravestones or sites nearby. Some things should still be respected, after all. There isn't even anyone sneaking up behind the most recent ex-Robin. Not yet, at least.
However, there is a voice that speaks up from nearby — he wasn't there a moment ago, but now he is, casually leaning against one of the Mausoleums. "Nice try," is offered, even pleasantly, "But did you really think I only had one of those?"

In fact, he's wearing yet another Red Mask…identical to the one perched on the headstone. "Or that I wouldn't realize you did something to try and track me down?"

As the voice comes to his ears, Tim switches back into night vision mode and turns to look where the voice comes from. Still, however, his lips curl up at one corner, into a lopsided grin. He reaches down to his belt, pulling the smooth black baton from it's holster and depressing the button that sends it extending into a full on bo-staff with a soft "shwip" sound.

"I didn't expect you to have only one helmet, no. That's why the tracker was dust. So it'd get on your clothes, too," he says, tilting his head to one side. He continues, "But here you are. And here I am. And so, in the end, the job still got done."

"You really want to fight me? Here?" Red Hood gestures to the headstones and statues all around, "Seems a little disrespectful, don't you think?" He hasn't drawn any of the guns from their holsters yet. "Clothes can be cleaned or tossed out. But I guess it's less obvious than some other methods."

He shifts his position some so that his arms are crossed at his chest and one leg is crossed in front of the other, "You do realize that if I wanted to hurt you, you'd be bleeding already, so put the stupid stick down."

"You're right. I don't want to fight you. Not here." Tim says, though his posture doesn't change in the slightest. He's still ready. "So why don't you just turn yourself in for the murders you've commited and save us both the trouble. And the disrespect for the dead."

The threat means very little to Tim. It's boastful posturing, and Tim is too confident in his own combat prowess at this stage in his development to be swayed. He's not Dick Grayson, and he's not Bruce Wayne. But he is a fighter trained by the League of assassins and Batman. "If you wanted to hurt me, you'd have tried to make me bleed. Tried."

"Disrespect? I haven't done anything to the dead. What, do you think I peed on their graves or something? Come on, give me -some- credit…" it's almost as if his grin could be heard from behind the featureless mask. "As for turning myself in, why don't -you- turn -yourself- in for the viligaltism and assault on all those people over the years that you've undoubtedly attacked in the name of 'Justice'. Aside from making sure that these people stay dead and aren't let out on bail by their mafioso friends, what's the difference between our two methods?"

"Bullets have a way of making most people bleed," he casually points out. "I'm sure I could find a chink in that armor of your's."

"The fight. If we fought, that would be the disrespect to the dead." Tim says impatiently, not having the mindset to have to explain his meaning to someone. He just wants to reel this guy in, turn him over to the police for the murders he comitted in the woods, and the injury he inflicted upon Nightwing. "As for me, and mine, we work with the police. We have an understanding that's left unspoken, but everyone knows it. When I try to leave before the police show up somewhere? It's because I don't want to spend the next three hours giving a detailed statement and going over the evidence with the detectives. It's not that I'm concerned for being arrested."

It can't be seen, but behind that cowl, an eyebrow raises, and Tim has the ghost of a smile on his lips. "As for bullets… this armor is pretty chinkless. And I've been dodging gunfire since I was fourteen years old. I don't fear guns. Or masked murderers. So let's drop the intimidation tactics and penis measuring. I'm here to take you in for murder. Because murder is not justice. Murder is crime. That's the difference between your method and mine. Mine is the way society works. Yours is anarchy, and senseless. Killing someone doesn't help our community, nor does it give the killed a chance to grow past their failings and mistakes. I'm Order. You're Chaos. We're polar opposites, you and I, so spare me the "We're not so different, you and I" generic bad guy bit."

"Oh, Bullshit," is argued by the Red Hood. "All of that. Bullshit. I know -exactly- how you guys operate, so don't give me that 'We work for the Police…we're Order and the Good Guys'." The rolling of his eyes can't be seen from behind his own helmet. "You're blind…or brainwashed if you can't see the similarities. But fine. You don't want to fight…I don't want to fight…in that we're similar. So why don't you go your way and I'll go mine and we'll go on with our lives, pretending that what we're -both- doing is for the Good of the People in the grand scheme of things."

"Tommy Skulnick." Red Robin retorts. He lets the name linger in the air for a moment, before explaining himself. "Tommy was a low level player in Falcone's gang. I roughed him up and detained him for the police. Tommy was convicted of grand larceny, attempted murder, drug trafficking, extortion, and a number of other charges. He spent five years in prison and got out on good behavior. Tommy's now working for his brother in law in Metropolis, towing trucks and helping out around the garage. He's got a fiancee, and has recently gotten the court's approval for supervised visitation with his two children. He goes to church on weekends, and volunteers in a community outreach program for the city's youth, to turn them away from gangs."

Red Robin steps forward, and even lets his bo staff collapse back in on itself. "There's others, too. I can give you a whole list of these bad guys that you murder turning over a new leaf. It works. It doesn't always, but sometimes it does. Sometimes, all it takes is the fear of people like us to set people back on the right path. But we'll never know if they're dead. Tommy wouldn't have the life he now has, which isn't the best, and isn't easy, but it's good… if we had made the same decision that you have. It's not our place to be judge, jury and executioner. It's our place to stand up for what's right, and stop the wrongs, and let justice handle the punishment."

Red Hood slowly straightens once Red Robin has finished his little lecture. Gloved hands begin counting, "Poison Ivy. Harvey Dent. The Scarecrow. The Riddler." He holds up an open palm with the fingers spread, "The Joker. How many times have you caught them and how many times have they escaped?How many times have they harmed those trying to put them into custody? How many times have they killed the people who were hoping to rehabilitate them?" His hand slowly lowers. "How long have you been in Gotham, kid? Don't you know yet that Justice doesn't exist here?" His hands gesture to the tombstones, "How many here are victims of that lack of Justice?"

He starts to move away from the Mausoleum, revealing that he was, in fact, leaning on the one belonging to the Wayne family.

"If it helps you sleep at night, I don't kill the guys who seem like they might actually be reluctant to be doing what they're doing. Only the scum who wouldn't think twice about drugging your baby sister or shooting your mom for looking at them."

"Ivy has hope for redemption. Harvey just needs help. He was a good man, driven mad by his tragedy and circumstance. The Riddler just needs to be challenged. Scarecrow? The Joker? Insane. In need of treatment that they've never gotten. They won't, and don't, always escape. Are the deaths they've caused tragic? Absolutely. But two wrongs don't make a right. Even you have to realize that." Red Robin says quietly, and shakes his head. "What you do creates nothing but a self-cannibalistic cycle of destruction. You kill them, they kill more people, everything escalates, and chaos. We have a city in flames and innocents hurt or murdered. We have riots and the breaking down of everything that the good people here have worked so hard to build."

Red Robin points up at the sky, back towards downtown Gotham. "You say we don't have justice in this city, but that's just not true. Everyone knows that. They only have to look up at the night sky to see it. Everytime that bat is painted on the clouds, they know that justice is out there, in Gotham, and he's working."

Red Robin lowers his pointing hand, but raises his other, until both are positioned, palms open in a gesture of surrender. "I get that you're driven. I understand that you're passionate about stopping crime. I can see that. But you're going about it the wrong way. You have a chance to do some good. So do it. But first, you have to pay your debt to society for the lives you've claimed. Come with me. Turn yourself over to the authorities and do your time. Then, when you're released, we can talk about how you can do some real good for this city."

"First of all, once they're dead…they're not hurting anyone anymore," Red Hood points out. "Secondly, don't even try that on me. Batman isn't perfect. He's just as bad as any of those others we've mentioned and if he didn't beat up those that society labels as 'evil', he'd be lumped in with them. You know it…don't you say that you haven't seen it. You wear the symbol." He takes a step away from the mausoleum, as if moving towards the mask perched, still, on the headstone.

"Thirdly, you know as well as I that even if I -was- found guilty of killing anyone, that I wouldn't be released. If it's not Arkham, enough drugs to kill an elephant, and a padded room, then it's at least twenty to fifty years in prison and what good would that do? I think I'll pass on your offer, thanks."

He's taken the mask from the headstone and holds it out towards Red Robin, "Want it?" Whether or not an answer is given, it's tossed at the Bat.

It may not be rigged to explode and shoot out shrapnel, but it's been rigged to be a smoke bomb to obscure an exit!

He catches the helmet, and as the smoke billows out, he tosses it aside. Immediately, he runs to where the Red Hood was, but finds nothing. Just the gravestone that the helmet sat upon before he had tossed it.

"Dammit!" He mutters, his fists clenching and relaxing. He should have been more aggressive. He should have just taken him down, even here and forced him. Next time, he won't be so polite. Obviously, this is a man with a skewed perception of the world, if he would lump Batman into the same place as his rogues. "Maybe Arkham is exactly what he needs…"

But with that, Red Robin makes his own retreat, taking the helmet with him, now that it's done issuing forth smoke. It will provide clues, certainly. Perhaps a hair or other genetic material that he can use to get a DNA trace. Something.
The helmet has been cleaned of any hairs but it still may be useful.

The headstone it was resting on was also a fairly new one:

Jason Todd
1994-2011
RIP

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