Reconsider

August 30, 2015:

Alex, Lunair, Harper and Richard walk into a club…

Narrows Underground Club

Characters

NPCs: Club Goers

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: The XX - Reconsider (Jamie xx Edit)


Fade In…

Midnight.

That's when the best nightclubs in Gotham were open for business. Clubs in the Narrows even had the better music, the better atmosphere, and with the recent slew of clean-up of baddies.. the best people. The DJ at the top mixed tunes and edits that came from the internet that deserved to be danced to, kissed to, while the bartender wisely carded those wishing for a drink and turned those away who were illegal and asking.

And were soon ejected from the club, for being liars.

But that wouldn't happen this night, it was smooth sailing. The cool tunes of Jamie's radio mix of The XX's Reconsider was on full blast, few people slowdanced, others mingled around with their sodas or gin and drank. And then there was Harper, strapped up with buckles that lined her thighs, purple hair swinging with the beat, earrings glittering within the light that the strobe produces.

Most would have seen her with bruises, limping or aching.. but tonight? Her make-up was right. Her leather buckled dress was form fitting and awesome. The tendrils swayed and licked at her boots as she slow spins, her arms a collage of awesome as she moves like a flower child.

All was right in Gotham. All was right indeed..
Dick Grayson slips in through the backdoor, having slipped the requisite bribe to the doorman to get him in around the hoi polloi. He wasn't the media presence that Bruce was, but people in Gotham did have a tendency to know who Dick Grayson was and, quite frankly, he much preferred being able to mingle in the shadows, even when he wasn't wearing a mask.

He's up on the catwalk overlooking the dance floor proper, leaning against the railing, his forearms braced to support him. He spots Harper not that very far away and grins, but doesn't try to attract her attention quite yet. People in Batman's sphere had a tendency to feel like he was always watching, and coincidentally running into other members of his retinue was a good way to reinforce that particular myth of omniscience. Dick understood why Bruce encouraged it, but he saw no reason to play along.

The music isn't bad, though, the intensive beat pulsing in his ears as he flags down a waitress, getting himself a martini and settling in for a night of relaxation. He hoped.

That blonde kid's seen at a lot of these clubs. He's that guy that just saunters on up to the front of the line, usually with a gal or two on his arm, and seems to know every bouncer by name. Man, that jerk even gets a slap on the back and a half-shoulder hug from the huge guy at the entrance. Sure the gal with him doesn't exactly fit the type of his usual hangers on. But still, man. Some guys have all the luck.
Then when he's on the inside it doesn't change. He like slips through the crowd with a smile, a wave for people he probably barely knows. He's walking along, gets given a drink by a passing waitress. Heck he even wanders over towards one of those corner VIP table areas and drops into the half-circle booth seat like he owns the damn place.
Once settled the young Olympian gestures towards Lunair and tells her even as the bouncer click-clinks the velvet rope back into place in front of that VIP booth. "Get what you want, my treat and all that. But if I give you the high sign you take a cab home without me, alright? Alright."

Lunair, however, is a fish out of water. More like a fish that just took up running 40K marathons and is flopping her way to glory with a stunned expression on her face. Sure, she's probably shot people in a club but she's really not used to this sort of place. She has to quirk a smile at the security, politely waving. She has no clue why or what the bouncer is assuming about her.

But she likes hanging out with the one deity she knows of that plays xbox. Her eyes widen a bit and she looks around. She nods. "Um. Okay." Pause. "High sign," Nod. "Alright. I won't don my superhero alias, Captain Cockblock. I'll probably have something light." Drunken Lunair could end so, so badly.

The music doesn't let up, and neither does Harper. She doesn't ignore anyone, for that matter. She was in the zone, swaying from side to side.. the one night off she has to at least let go of the worries of her brother and work, she was going to take it.

She didn't know that one of the Batfamily watches her, she's never met him.. but it was clear that he knows who she is. Stupid Batman. Even though he was her favorite person, she was allowed to be all..

…whats that word?

Who knows!

She grew tired of the lone dance, the song changing and editing her mood, her arms dropping with exasperation as she moves away from the stage. A glance up towards the raptors.. and there was a man there who seemed a touch out of place with a martini.. and down towards the floor at Lunair who.. looked out of place as well.

She follows the womans gaze, spying that man.. that man right..

"Alex?" She says aloud, but she was sure that her voice was drowned out by the heavy beat of dat bass.

Dick Grayson watches closely but not too closely, trying to just relax and let his guard down. It isn't easy, his guard has been particularly honed and trained to always be 'on'. The civilian self is supposed to be the mask, after all, the real person the one who crouches around rooftops and kicks thieves in the face. Dick hasn't always found that to be a healthy mindset, though - obsession takes its toll and he's trying to be a bit more balanced.

He sees the expression on Harper's face change, though, and he starts paying more attention to that, pushing away from the railing and starting to makeh is way around. He's not sure what's up, but he should be ready to intervene, discreetly, in case it's necessary.

Indeed, it was Alexander Aaron, also known as Phobos God of Fear. Also of War and X-Box. Though he was a young man of divine stature his hearing is not what one would call super though it was rather decent. The call of his name escaped his attention even as he propped up a foot on one of the ottomans there and slouched to the side still holding his glass of something brown or blackish and definitely alcoholic.
To Lunair he gestures, "You remembered to tip the homeless guys in the parking lot, right? If you didn't we're going to come back to slashed tires and worse." He gives her a 'look' as if to sternly warn her of the horrors that could happen to their vehicle should such a transgression be allowed to occur.
From afar he does stand out in some ways. The marble skin, the shock of blonde hair, the too too perfect features, all serve to make him seem almost other-worldly when combined with the faint reddish glow of his eyes. But that smirk on his lips somehow brings him down to earth in some manner at the least.

Lunair looks to Alexander, blinking owlishly a moment. She nods. "Of course." She remembered! And at the look, her eyes widen a bit, innocently. Hey! She beams, though. She looks quietly amused by him here. He fits in waaaaaaay better. Although, there's an owlish glance at Harper. "Is she a friend of yours?" She seems curious. This is more an adventure and an obstacle course in which Lunair is simply not allowed to explode the walls out of the way because she does not have time to fuck around with that maze bullshit.

That focus was zeroed in upon Alex as she approaches, her hands curled up into a fist..

"You don't call, you don't write.. you're in town you don't even bother to stop and say.."

She draws her footback, launching it towards the otto-man to upset that Blue Steele posture that he holds. ".. hello." A look was cast towards Lunair.. and a wink was given. She wasn't upset, not really. She just wanted to chase off any potential dates that the man may be looking for by causing a scene as a disgruntled girlfriend.

"Of all the times I helped you out, I gave you money, I gave you my time.." She was causing a scene alright, some people were in the background sniggering and laughing, all pointing at the deity who.. may or may not have been embarrased. "I trusted you with my cat. HAMLET! I let you babysit him. And he loved you!"

She was trying her best not to smile, but a bite to her inner cheek killed that one real quick.

"I can't believe you.. you're here to pick up other chicks huh? Don't date this guy!" She points out towards Phobos. "He'll do you and then leave you, cause he's an ASS—.."

Dick Grayson puts himself on the fringes of the conversation, but doesn't intervene or push himself around. He's actually quite deft about it, seeming like just another guy dancing, in a black t-shirt and jeans, maybe a bit better looking than the average and certainly in better shape, but nothing too out of the ordinary. Someone would need training to recognize the way he floats just within earshot, never really seeming to pay attention but always absorbing things…although he's quickly begun to realize that this is more of a personal matter than something that requires that sort of attention…

At first when Alex looks over and catches Harper's approach he does a quick doubletake. But then his lip quirks into a wry smile even as she raises her voice. Their little VIP corner suddenly is encroached upon by the irate vigilante even if she's in her civvies.
Nearby one of the big bouncers starts to step forward, already preparing the standard, "You're gonna have to come with me, miss."
But Alexander cuts him off, holding up a hand and smirking across the way at the club girl. "Hey, I don't see a ring on this finger!" He snaps back to the first few cutting remarks. But then he pipes up with, "And I can't help it if your cat loves me more than it loves you. What can I say, it's got good taste!"
Of course he then glances to Lunair, smiles crookedly, then gestures back towards Harper.
"Luna, may I introduce you to Harper? Apparently she had a mas on at me for some reason." He shakes his head sadly even as the music keeps thumping around them, lifting his voice enough to be heard in their little alcove. "Some people's kids. I tell you."

"…" You could power a small portion of the Netherlands with the wind rushing over Lunair's head. She really has no idea. If she spots Dick, she just sort of gives him a confused look. She watches the two for a moment, glancing between them.

Lunair blinks a little. Trying to process. The little windows spinny circle is practically going off over her head. Her face goes a little slack as she thinks. Hmmn. "… I like kitties." She does. She kind of wants in on that cat petting action.

But then, she smiles faintly. "Hi Harper. And a mas?" She looks lost. "… are you two going to do something naughty?" Pause. "… I can go check out some of the mosses nearby." Yes. "It is nice to meet you, Miss Harper."

Harper sticks out her tongue, then allows her hand to raise, her two middle fingers curling and thumbs extended to gesture towards Alex as an insult. It was all in jest, though she does turn to offer up a hand towards Lunair, "And no. We're not going to go off and do something naughty. Despite my taste of dress, I do have class." She grins. "Mama always told me not to mess with trash."

Whether her hand was taken or not, she turns to watch the guard wander off, her eyes spotting Grayson as.. oh.. oh.. She takes a slight step back, her hand reaching out to lightly pit-pit-pat Lunair to check out the hottie at.. whatever o'clock she was facing.

"Excuse me a moment."

It almost looks as if she were going in for the kill, but nope. She walks right past Grayson, slowing her speed to get an actual, really.. really good look at his face.. and then keeps going, right to the bar to take a slight perch upon the stool to flag down the bartender with a wave of her hand.

Dick Grayson notes the attention he gets - he was, after all, spying - and, when Harper brushes right past him, he makes a point to follow her in return, making his way up to the bar and shoving up. Even though Harper got there first, his black card gets the attention, the chick behind the counter shoving right past and getting to him, "What can I get you, sugar?" she says, all low-cut top and desperate to be noticed.

"Margharitas, dos, por favor, one for me and one for her," he says, nodding to Harper where she's perched, "And she's on my tab for the night, whatever else she wants." he says. He turns his attention directly to the younge rheroine, a wry smirk on his face, "You get it out of your system, or you wanna go over there and let me put an arm around your shoulder while you smack 'im in the face?"

Reasserting his Blue Steele, Alexander slouches properly back into his seat and grins after Harper for a moment, then looks back towards Lunair and shakes his head. "Spend enough time in any given club and you get a feel for the regulars." The young deity takes a sip of his drink and then expansively streeetches out on the seat, gesturing absently in the direction of the lovely young Harper with his glass.
"She and I have had a few disagreements in the past, but she's a decent sort. Would not approve of our current project I believe, though in her own way is involved in something similar." He scritches the stubble on the side of his cheek thoughtfully. "You should get out there and mingle, though. We came here so you could get some rec time. Go rec."

Lunair just kind of blinks. She doesn't know how to respond to Harper and instead nods meekly. "I see." That's all she offers. And Lunair looks to where Harper points, then back to Phobos. "…" She fidgets a little, at the idea of mingling. "I usually practice or work with my plants. Sometimes I explore. People are overwhelming," She admits quietly. "And I see." She offers. She looks quietly amused a moment. "Or sometimes video games. Orr, um… I took up drawing." But people seem overwhelming. "I do spend time with my friends. I can wander around if you were going to go hit on people." Beam. She does apparently like Phobos enough not to cockblock him.

There was a little kerfluffle outside, but then it all dies down. The lingering guard reaches a hand upright to press to his ear, then attends to the ruckus, leaving the club unmanned for now.

As the woman bypasses Harper, she gives her a look of shock. That was rude and uncalled for, and yet.. the black card pretty much excuses everything.. especially for the one who it was attached to.

"Uh.." Is all she could say, her eyes wide for the moment, her fingers lifting to point towards the bar, and then point towards Alex.. and.. "Y.. I can't drink a margurita.." She was still underaged, of course. But, free drinks for the rest of the night? Sure!

"B..bu… I.. y'know.. you're.." She couldn't even get the words out, so much that her face turns a beet red as she turns towards the clevage filled woman. "Pepsi. On the rocks." And to impress? "In a very clean but outwardly dirty glass." And then she mouths 'keep it clean'. Of course.

The door to the club entrance flies open, and there were a few little screams mingled in with the laughter within the club. But, the thrum of the music keeps it all going.. but there was suddenly something very hot upon Harper's lower back.. and.. she didn't feel so good.

*THWIP!*

Another bullet flies by from the muzzle of a silencer, catching a dancing woman in the back of the head. She launches forward, the blood splatter at a high velocity enough to land upon Harper's cheek as she looks towards Grayson.. dazed..

Dick Grayson reacts with lightning speed, nevermind that he just handed over his credit card. He moves quickly to cushion Harper, catching her and providing his own body as a shield from anything further as he supports her, quickly cradling her and bringing her down to the ground. He doesn't call her name, doesn't make any dramatic gestures. This isn't a game or a movie.

He flicks his eyes back over his shoulder just in time to see a woman go down, reading the way she falls as easily as others might scan through a newspaper, tracing the arc of the impact to follow the ballistic line back to its source, looking for the shooter…

The table in front of the boothseat is pushed over to provide cover. Normally this wouldn't be a big deal, but there's a harsh crunch and the grating crackle of screws being torn out of their steel brackets as this particular table had been bolted down. But now it's on its side, giving some measure of cover to Lunair and as chance would have it Alexander as well.
He goes to one knee, and the sudden rush of emotions does get to him somewhat. There's that adrenaline rush, such a heady thing going through all the minds of all the people around them. He's keyed into it, can feel it, and in some ways he devours… would exult in it. But now is not the time.
Features shifting grim, suddenly the casual party boy is gone. Instead Alexander looks across at Lunair and gestures with a toss of his chin. "Flank from the corner near the door, non-lethal for now. I'll try and draw attention in a count of twenty. Go."

Lunair blinks, and she ducks behind the table. She is kneeling near Alex, startled by the noise and Harper's injury. Lunair's own reflex would be to armor up and murder the stuffing out of anyone toting weapons. "Okay," She nods. Lunair trusts Alex enough to listen and will scamper easily as she's asked. She's pretty nimble at getting where she needs to go - even if people skills are not her strong point. But she is watching for reloads or weapons.

The collapse of Harper and the fall of the woman kicks off the first row of violence, for the quiet sounds soon shoot through the crowd, shocking the woman behind the bar who gets it right into the chest, collapsing back into a row of bottles and soon slides down into the growing puddle of liquor.

That one came from the right.

And soon, from the left, another row of gunfire happens, not quiet.. but loud, deafening ears and causing a considerable amount of feedback as people begin to scream and run, wires were soon hit and the music is replaced with the sounds of murder.

The DJ is the next to go down along with five others, and soon everyone begins to scramble and hit the floor, all heading for the exits.. some screaming.. some crying.. one man, a lone hero tries to take down the last man standing.. for he was holding the silencer only to be shot in the neck. He staggers back, then collapses to his knees, falling face foward. Dead.

Harper reaches out with a hand to grasp Grayson, her eyes still wide with shock, her lips pursed as she looks all around her, trying to focus her surroundings. Her feet drag against the ground as she tries to stand up, her breath a harsh wheeze as she tries to protect him, who's protecting her. "Don't.." She wheezes out, her lips pursing to hold back a cough, "..stay.. down.." Dying was nothing pretty (not that she would, she's Harper fucking Row), and soon that cough ejects from her body along with a splash of blood that coats her lips and cheeks.

'Someone help!'
'Oh my god!'
'Call 9-1-1!'

Dick Grayson needs to both stop the shooters and somehow attend to Harper. FOr most people, an impossible task. For Dick Grayson, it's just part of what he does. "It'll be okay, you're not going to die, I promise," he says to her, and he means it. He rips her shirt and quickly presses it to her wound, applying pressure with one hand, "Grab this, push it in hard, don't be afraid to get it in there. Breathe slow, try and stay calm," he says.

He flicks his hand up and grabs a beer bottle off the counter, having traced the ballistics in his head back to at least one of the shooters. It seems like an offhand gesture, casual, the way he throwrs that Budweiser, and yet it sails unerringly through the air, flicking over people's heads until it smacks into the face of Harper's shooter, catching them right between the eyes.

There are multiple shooters, multiple sources of gunfire, a cross-fire is fairly evident as several other people go down. Alexander looks over the edge of the table for a moment, checks the position where Lunair is heading… marks the angles.
She'll have a good line on the one near that corner. There's the other in the front, that one is his.
With no preamble nor hint of subtlety, Alexander gains his feet, one strong hand wrapping around the edge of that table. Hefting it like some over-sized discus he almost effortlessly sends the cocktail table whirling through the air straight at the gunman in the front looking to smash it into the fellow and perhaps lodge both him and it into the wall. It's an almost effortless throw yet the speed with which it cuts through the air is almost frightening.
And suddenly amidst the swirling surging mass of people who are rushing towards the exits, stands the tall blonde man. The fear of the crowd feeds him, yet shames him even as his eyes flash to their bright crimson. For a moment he seems almost bigger, even as he takes the edge off the fear, keeps the panic low… making everyone want to make for the exit but trying to stop the herd mentality and panic from taking over.

Lunair goes to where Alexander directed her. And she's trying to remember the nonlethal bit. It's far too tempting just to shoot the shooters and call it a day. Dubstep gun might be a bit silly. So. Gotta think… Oh yeah. Dart gun. Nice, quiet, and it'll put Mr. Shooter down for a niiiiiiice, long nap. Even if the Dubstep gun would actually be appropriate and help keep people from being afraid.

Still, she's just glad Alex isn't flipping a table at her (thank gods he doesn't play CoD or all of the tables might get flipped).

Of course Harper wasn't going to die. She is who she is, and she wasn't dead yet. Just a series of broken bones and a fractured jaw, now added with a bullet wound in the back and through the front. She was going to be alright.

Maybe.

She continues to cough, nearly turning upon her side until the cloth was pressed to her wound, her teeth gritted as a loud grown escapes from her lips to try to combat the pain. But she does as she was told, pushing hard with one hand and hanging onto Grayson with the other. She wasn't going to let him out of her sight.

His toss was true, striking her shooter right in the middle of the head, his arm drawn up as he was in the middle of firing a shot, immediately crumpling to the ground, set to rock back and forth until a wave of dizziness takes hold of him and he pukes..

However, the other shooter wasn't so lucky, Alex's shot pelts the man right in the middle, knocking feet from the ground, folding him in half as he's plastered against the wall, back broken in the process. He was still alive, but he was out.

Alex then could hear it, the third shooter, the blasts loud as it comes from behind.. the crowd forcing itself towards the exit and bottle-necked out of the doors. But his prescence? Oddly.. frightening.. yet calming.. the tension lets up.. and there was a small order restored.

The fourth shooter barely has time to aim and fire at the crowd of leaving club-goers. As soon as that arm lifts? He.. staggers.. and grumbles.. and yawns.. then flops right down upon the ground, bottom high in the air.. arms curling underneath him as he falls into a deep, snore filled sleep.

Dick Grayson watches calm follow chaos almost eerily, so quick you barely could even credit that anything happened. Normally, he would focus on getting the perpetrators cuffed and secured, but they seem to be rather incapacitated all of their own. Not to mention that he has bigger issues at hand.

"C'mon," he says and he scoops Harper up in his arms, hefting hieir carefully. It isn't always wise to move a wounded person but he knows just how to do it. Neither of them need to be questioned about this incident - he can review the police reports later and follow up. For now, making sure she's still breathing is going to be his primary interest - and he'es not in the mood to wait for an ambulance. Leslie Tompkins' clinic was only a few blocks away and her doors were always open for Dick. He could have that bullet out of Harper in twenty minutes if he books it hard…

The one remaining shooter is in the doorway some small distance behind Alexander and to the side. As fortune would have it the one man is more intent on firing at the fleeing civilians than finding out what happened to his comrade. It leaves the man open, giving him just enough time to see the flicker of motion out of the corner of his eye.
That last gunman turns, trying to bring his weapon up in time, only to have the heavy brass end of that velvet rope smash around and upside his head with a resounding /THWOK!/ that sends him crashing to the ground and reeling with a spatter of blood marring the ground.
Dropping his end of the velvet rope, Alexander scowls severely trying not to let the emotions of the moment go to his head. He steps out of the VIP area and towards the main dance floor, towards the fallen people. He looks from one to the other quickly. Perhaps he is looking just for Harper, or perhaps he just does not care for general humanity. Whatever the case he does not stop to aid any of the fallen. His footsteps end near Grayson and Row as he lifts his voice. "Where are you going to take her?"
The tone of the man is short, sharp, severe. Utterly different than the joviality that was offered earlier.

Lunair makes her dart gun disappear. She looks quietly concerned for Harper and the fallen, but mainly those she knows. A lot of them probably died nearly instantly judging by the shots (and Lunair would know - that's her preferred method of attack). She will make sure Alexander and his friend are fine before slinking off into the night like a slinky down stairs.

The lift was a hard one to handle, Harper draws out a clench-teethed scream as her eyes squeeze shut. She tries to keep the cloth pressed, her hand slightly shaking as she tries to keep her eyes open. But the sound of the voices, the screams.. the feedback, it was all getting too far away from her. "Call.." She didn't know who to call. She didn't want her brother to be called, he'd just worry and cry..

But the last man goes down, pelted with a nice welt upon his face, drawing a bruise already that broken his jaw and shattered his eye-socket. None of the hits that the gunmen faced today was lethal, each could account and attest to what they've done in the morning. For it wasn't long before the police was called, and the sirens could be heard in the backdrop, along with medical crews and workers who intend to save the lives of those still breathing inside..

Dick Grayson moves swiftly and stealthily, not even wanting her on the list of official victims or having to deal with anyone. He takes her up and over the bar and through the employee entrance, bullying his way past the kitchen staff to the back door of the place. One man tries to stand in his way, a well-meaning bouncer, and he gets a swift kick in the solar plexus for his troubles, nothing permanent but enough to leave him sucking wind in the wake of the man and his charge.

And then they're gone…

Dick Grayson moves swiftly and stealthily, not even wanting her on the list of official victims or having to deal with anyone. To Alex's question, he just says "Somewhere safe. Get your other friend out of here. Now," he says, in a tone that doesn't brook much in the way of argument. Imitating Bruce Wayne is sa good way to learn how to give orders.

He takes her up and over the bar and through the employee entrance, bullying his way past the kitchen staff to the back door of the place. One man tries to stand in his way, a well-meaning bouncer, and he gets a swift kick in the solar plexus for his troubles, nothing permanent but enough to leave him sucking wind in the wake of the man and his charge.

And then they're gone…

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