Integrity at Stake

March 29, 2016:

Steve Rogers with questions about the DEO travels to Gotham and meets with Bruce Wayne

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

"May I tell him who's here for him?" Skeptical receptionist is skeptical.

"Steve Rogers," says the tall man in the brown bomber jacket and blonde hair that's parted smoothly and combed back over his head. He removes his aviator glasses and smiles at the nonplussed looking lady.

"It might be a while, Mr. Rogers. Mr. Wayne is extremely busy."

Steve nods, "I understand that. I'm willing to wait."

Hands go in the pockets as he steps away from the desk and looks up at the beautiful entrance to the building. Steve resists the urge to whistle.


"Go ahead and send him up. Use my elevator." The message that goes through to the receptionist. Leaning back in to the high vaulted and backed chair Bruce adjusts his cufflinks and nods a parting acknowledgement to Lucius Fox, "I'll get those adjusted for you. The armor holding up alright?"
"Just fine. I've written down some additions I'd like added if you can get those to me before Friday… I'm likely going to need them."
Lucius frowns at Bruce but it quickly turns in to a smile, "Sure thing, Mr. Wayne."
"Bruce, Lucius, you can use it you know?"
"Of course, sir." Another of those smiles and the man who looks surprisingly like Morgan Freeman departs.
The elevator the woman should be ushering Steve too is past the usual ones and towards the back, quick no stops no additional people to deal with. Normally never used by even Bruce himself but some guests and certain times require privacy and solitude. Bruce's office area is an entire floor in blacks, golds, silvers on black marble floors. Shiny. Very and quiet. The art is tribal where it does exist or ranging from Esher like psychotic. Odd mix but that is again Bruce Wayne tastes.

The redhead at the small desk outside of the WE double doors smiles at Steve, a blush and a hair fix included before she buzzes him through, a direct route to the Wayne Heir.

Windows, lots of windows with black curtains that are open to the overcast and smoggy Gotham city that overlooks the Diamond, Financial and Old Town districts. A great view of Miagani island itself, the Hudson and beyond towards the Atlantic. If one really tries to look south they can see Metropolis across the harbor.


Steve seems genuinely in awe as he looks around at the opulence of the office. He hooks his sunglasses on his button up plaid shirt and follows along dutifully, often times looking up and back and then all around.

When he first gets to the office, he takes in the view. Despite the cloudy skies and the haze, it strikes him as beautiful in its own way. Which may be the only way to realistically describe Gotham as beautiful.

He passes by Lucius Fox as he walks further into the office and gives the man a quick smile and a nod before he is left alone with the CEO.

"Mr. Wayne, I realize you're extremely busy. I want to thank you for being willing to meet with me."


"Steve Rogers, outstanding." Lucius manages even smiling largely in return. Coming from Fox thats praise enough to last a while. He is unfortunately in a hurry and can't stick around to meet the legendary Captain America.

Bruce moves from behind the desk to walk over and offer a firm handshake to the soldier, "Mondays are always busy, yes but time for someone like you, absolutely. Water?" He motion at the cucumber filled decanter with glasses arranged in perfect symmetry around it.


"Water would be excellent, thank you." Steve crosses over towards the water, but steals another glance at the view. "You've got a real nice office here, Mr. Wayne. Anyways, I promised I'd get to the point. I noticed that your name has been associated with the DEO and the Knightwatch project. Now, when I was with the League, to me you seemed like someone who had a strong commitment to heroes and what they were doing for the world. That makes your involvement and, frankly, Stark's involvement somewhat of a surprise. I wanted to ask you, to your face, what the Knightfall project is all about and whether or not you think it's an infringement on civil liberties. And, since I presume you don't believe that. I want to ask why."


"Knightwatch Project? Oh, right, yes. That." The water is poured for both of them and offered over.
Bruce stares at his own glass before taking a healthy swig, it almost looks like the man is hungover. "My board presented it to me and I signed off on it, yes. It's a lucrative deal for our defense department but also I felt it necessary to offer whatever aid I could to help protect those men and women so they are able to return home to their families each and every day. I also know several of the GCPD who transferred to the DEO when it formed, I feel very obligated to take care of my own, Gothamites are after all my people."
"Where do you feel it is infringing on anyone's liberties? I admit, I haven't seen that yet. Not after that SRD debacle."


Steve takes a drink from the glass and shakes his head, "I'm not really sure that I do believe that. I don't know what to believe, to be honest. I know the SRD wasn't well received, but my immediate response was one of concern. I wanted to know more." He pauses. "I've been approached by several people who are actively asking for me to speak out against Knightwatch and the DEO. I thought that one of the best ways to gather more information on this project would be to come to you because I know you'd be honest."


"I can give you a list of our offered services and what we are getting in return from the DEO if you'd like? It's all rather humane and legal." Bruce lifts a flat WayneTech scroll up from his desk unraveling it to tap several times. An image holoprojects out and he pans through several pictures before offering it over to Steve. Medical inventory readouts, second skin protective suits, genetic identification monitoring device agreements also several paragraphs outlying the NMRF and a shared agreement for acquired technology and research.
"As you'll see, harmless and completely beneficial to, well, everyone. You'll understand, though, unlike you I am not exactly capable of going out there and taking on the world I do it in my own way, I pride myself on living up to my parents ideals. I like to consider myself a bit of a philanthropist."


"Of course, Mr. Wayne. We all help in our own way." Steve takes a look at the schematics and purses his lips. "Look, you're someone I trust. But there are a lot of people out there who think that the government is preparing to use this technology to attack and supercede heroes."

"Can I have these sent to me?" he asks about the pictures. "It might go a long way into dissuading some of my friends from going out and doing something rash."


"Of course, I will send you anything you need. Just leave your contact info with Danny out front." Bruce reclines back against his desk folding arms over his chest, plenty of tennis and outdoorsy activities as the man has large arms for a businessman, even his suit can't hide them.
"Criminals, only criminal superhuman threats. That is what they stated and if they are following the law they'll process and determine the guilt first. I can assure you if anything illegal or inhumane starts to transpire in regards to the DEO Wayne Enteprises will be the first supporter they will lose and I will make sure to help bury them. I can guarantee you that much, Mr. Rogers."


"I appreciate that," Steve says as he looks over the documents. Everything seems legitimate to Steve, and even though he still has his doubts, it seems reasonable that the government would make a more concerted effort to defend itself rather than rely upon the ad hoc help of the superhero community.

"It looks like this is all in order, Mr. Wayne. I want to thank you for taking time out of your day to help put me at ease. I'll be sure and spread this news to my associates to help in the same way."


"Glad to help, Mr. Rogers." Bruce smiles, "If you need anything, anything else at all you just let me know. Oh, also, you know any Hockey Fans? Metropolis Mammoths game. Unfortunately I won't be able to make it do to a business trip but I figure, maybe it's worth a deal. "Two tickets are taken out of a wallet and shown off, "Price, however, is an autograph for my friend Lucius, not sure if you caught him on the way out but hes a fan of yours. He even showed me a vintage Captain America action figure once."


"I…" Steve seems flabbergasted. "Thank you so much. I'd love to go to a game. I'll sign whatever he wants." He smiles genuinely as he looks at the tickets. "These are for your personal box?" He almost considers bringing Banner. As Hulk. They carry a lot of food in those places.

"Absolutely." Bruce hands the tickets over and fishes out a picture from the desk, folding it over so the back is exposed giving it to Steve with the pen included. "I'm sure he'll be ecstatic." The picture itself is of a boat. a sleek yacht of some variety. A Fox original design.

—-

Steve leans down and takes the pen, "Should I make it out to him? Or is he a collector who might want to sell someday?" He's fine with either, but he wants it to suit.

—-
"Just make it to Lucius Fox."

Bruce's smile appears one more time as he takes the pen back, clicking and unclicking the top. "Excellent, thank you." A handshake is exchanged and he walks Steve to the door, "Have a great day, Mr. Rogers. It was a treat to finally meet you."

With the office doors open, Bruce speaks to his secretary, "Danny make sure to help our guest with anything he requires, also call Jon in Metropolis, tell him Steve Rogers plus one are VIP listed for the Mammoth game." A nod to his guest and he closes the doors.

Once inside Bruce lifts up the pen and reads the LED display :: Biometic scan completed :: New biometric profile recorded :: .

Satisfied Wayne returns to his chair dropping the pen on his desk and turns around to face the window overlooking Gotham.

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