Alfred's Cookies

July 28, 2016:

Roy and Starfire confront Red Hood and they discuss…. Everything


One of the major enclaves within the city proper, Chinatown boasts a
population near 100,000 people. Here is where, historically, the Chinese
immigrants came in to land and created a small piece of home in their new
land. The streets are always busy, and the air at most times is filled with
a bewildering mix of Cantonese and Mandarin, and all the lesser dialects
that are only found in China. The commercial areas within Chinatown are a
riot of colors and traditional decorations, particularly on festival days
like the New Year. Once again, streets are closed for such a grand party.


NPCs: None.

Mentions: Nightwing Batman Alfred


Mood Music: [*\# None.]

Fade In…

If anyone starts asking around for Red Hood, first of all, they'd need to know -who- to ask. There are some underworld mobsters who would probably spit and curse the man's name as he's been obviously trying to take over their Family Business. They don't, however, know where he can be found — he just tends to either infiltrate business or flat out try to take mob bosses out.

If they eventually ask the 'right' person, they'll be told to go to Chinatown and to find someone with the Shanghai Syndicate. They might even get a contact.
Know who to ask? Pleeeeease.

This was Roy Harper. DEO agent, formerly Checkmate. Undercover at times, including that incident in Vietnam, where he met…

… Ahem. Maybe that wasn't the best example to use.

Regardless, the old gun-runner contacts and the drug-runners eventually led to a trail. Well then, Chinatown it was.

What the Red Hood was doing in Chinatown was anyone's guess, though, given that -absolutely- nothing was happening, it seemed. Just a trail going cold. It wasn't as though some white gweilo, dressed up in a white suit with a red tie and shades, walking down the streets with a tall, ravishing beauty stood out in Chinatown. But well, seeing as they were in the area… how about trying a sample of -authentic- Chinese food in a well-known (to the Syndicates) restaurant?

The question was proposed to Kori, with a bit of a grin. At the -least-, they could get -something- out of this trip.

Considering Kori had been already 'approached' as her alien self due to the rantings and raving of anti-meta/mutant/xeno, runners… She should be out in her image inducer. Instead…

Tawny skinned, but instead of red hair, she altered it to dark and half tied up in small sticks, hanging in waves down shoulders and the 'V' shaped opening in the back of the oriental printed dress, as it did the front, ending its separation in a point just beneath 'pierced' navel.

The only thing changed being her hair and the fact that her eyes bore pupils in deep green/brown hazel. The dress? Purple and gold embroidery, with matching shoes of black and purple, as well as highlights of gold seem to make her feet appear smaller and lifted in their stroll.

Stand out? Yes. But nt as who had just appeared last night in Metro during G. Godfrey's speech.

"I am always hungry dah-link. So, after dinner… Do we flip tables if this does not do it?" A slight lean and whisper to Roy, but…yep.

Serious business.

There is definitely a restaurant that fits the bill. It's a little hole in the wall dumpling house that seems to have more than a few already dining. The strangers are glanced at with some skepticism as they enter the restaurant and are shown to a somewhat shabby yet clean table. English is definitely not the dominant language in conversation or on the menu.

Most turn back to their meals and conversation after staring at the newcomers, but one of the servers does his best to slink back into the kitchen, presumably to mention that there are interesting people there. Maybe it's to find a server who can take their order?

Brief pause. Well, if -someone- asks, maybe, Roy could pass Kori off as being from Chernobyl, what with the accent and the skin. Still, Roy made a note find out just what -Lian- was finding on those cartoon channels. Of course, it -could- be Kori who found them. Lord help him if Kori discovered Beevis and Butthead.

"Let's not flip any tables. That's bound to get frowned on, and we wouldn't want to ruin -their- businesses. We're just here for the dude in the red helmet. And if he doesn't show up, we go on and… I dunno, order one of those ducks hanging in the windows and go home." He does pause to eye the menu. "… or, we could order a steamed fish. Ever had one of -those-? The best kinds are the ones where it's raw -around- the bones. The juices just… you'll see, let's find out if they do it that way. Oh, waiter…"

Kori sighs, an act of exasperation as Roy asks her to behave. A fall into a chair and the menu is looked over, a query in look sent to Roy as it is authentic down to the writing. She cannot read it. "Like the God…jira?? Roll we ordered before? Spicy?" Fingertips shove the menu slightly away and her recline in the chair comes with a twirl of fingers in dark hair.

Chernobyl might fit if it was not for the uncanny tan she sports, bordering on a sunset color, or the feline tilt of those eyes lined in kohl. "I trust your tastes." A flash of a smile before she looks up and off, playing the role of a ditz very well… Back pocketed…

Maybe it was overheard that they were looking for the guy in the 'red helmet'. Maybe it was presumed that they were since…who else would come into the place who wasn't already in the know? As one of the servers is called over, she looks at the two before insisting, "You two, come with me." She's obviously not going to serve them at the table in the main room of the restaurant.

They're handed off to another who then leads them towards a back room where there is a table set for four. Two are already seated there with a pot of tea steaming on the table. One of the men seems to be of Asian heritage and is wearing a suit and the other is dressed in black pants, a leather jacket, and a red helmet.

"That's Japanese food, Kori. They serve Chinese food here, and they're not really on friendly terms with the Japanese, so uh, we're not ordering that."

Still, when the menu doesn't show up, and instead they're invited to come elsewhere, Roy grunts. "What, no steamed fish? I wanted it done the -best- way, you know. The ones where they're still raw around the bones…" he says, as he gets up. "C'mon, dahlink, we're off to see the wizard." Time to find out if the Tin Man still needed a heart.

Kori blinks in a rapid fashion at Roy, and the red flush to tawny cheeks shows her embarrassment. A light dip of her head in acknowledgment and she flicks a hand his way, the tiny chimes of jewelry sounding, looped around fingers, resound. "You order then?" A look of 'please?' offered Roy's way for once before they are ushered off.

Now her look goes from the 'ditz' to that of a narrowed and foreshadowed infiltrator, set on ways. When she comes to her seat, legs cross, the dress captured 'tween thighs while an arm is rested across the back of the chair.

"Okay, okay!" A wave to the waiter who ushered them back as the man in suit and mask is given a look. "Pecking duck. But less duck on my side as much as his. Side of Jellyfish with sesame oil and green onions. If not…" A pause and she points to Red Hood and then the table. "Hot Pot, me."

"Were you really intending on eating?" the man in the suit asks, his english perfect. He looks to the two even as they sit at the table with them, "Why are you here? What do you want?"

The one in the red helmet merely watches them, noting the shapely form of the woman as she sits, and then the one in the white suit.

He seems familiar.

Adjusting his tie, Roy shrugs. "Well, we -were- looking for, you know, someone who's apparently wearing a red helmet, but since we weren't seeing him, we thought we'd try the steamed fish. You know the sort, right? The -real- good kind where you don't completely cook it all the way? I mean, I figured, I'd introduce the lady here to the -real- steamed fish."

He tilts his head, and considers. "But I guess that can wait, since I see you have a red-helmeted dude. I've got a message for him from his brother, if he gives a damn about it."

Red Hood doesn't move as he seems to listen…or maybe he's waiting for a translation, which the man in the suit provides. There's another long pause of silence before a modulated voice comes from behind the helmet, answering in the same language. The man in the suit then gets up and heads to the door, closing it behind him.

Now it's just the three of them in the room with, it seems, only one exit and entrance.

Red Hood stands then, and draws two pistols from under his coat, aiming them at the two guests. "Who are you? Who sent you?" is asked, the voice still modulated.

"No… I really hear the Hot Pot is dee-lish." But as they exchange words and things start to heat up, Kori is drawing a finger over the table, detailing out symbolism for her request. K''tten is feeding her the Chinese script through comm unit, how precise the translation is, is up in the air, none-the-less…

The cross of legs has revealed her from the side of torso to ankle, all the way down the jut of hip clasped into place by silver effigies riddled in jade and black. The only authentic accent of the zhuhou dragon keeping it all together up the side in random captures of jaws and loops with allotted four claws for royalty, but not 'noble' or that of the emperor. She and K'tten did their research respectfully….

A hand lifts and grips one of the hair pins, and as part of the bun falls it turns red, accenting hues along the darkness, shifting with the guise falling away. "I am really hungry," A tip of that wanna-be chop stick comes to deep purple lips and Kori smiles, those eyes flashing with the gesture. "And shooting us will not get you your message from your kin." But legs uncross and she stands, a means to re-direction though non-threatening.

"They'll only put more blood on your hands." And if he was ever a Robin, that may land a blow…

"Oh c'mon, you should know the answer to that. I mean, who else but Cock Robin would send us?" Roy replies. I mean, really. Dick-Robin should be fairly easy to identify as -that- Cock Robin.

Of course, if you extended the analogy to 'Who Killed Cock Robin', that would make Jason… you know, never mind that train of thought.

Waving a hand, Roy indicates the guns. "Want to put those down before it gets too hot to handle? I mean, this gal here, she's turn up the heat in a hurry. Trust me, you're not gonna love that.”

The aim of Red Hood's pistols doesn't ease up as Starfire stands and pulls a sharpened stick from her hair. He doesn't seem worried, however, just wary. "I don't have any kin." It's said simply.

"I have more blood on my hands than Lady Macbeth. I'm bathing in it. And seriously? He sent you two instead of coming himself? I always knew he was a coward. So, what message am I supposed to get?"

Kori smiles, but her lower lip is dimpled by the honed chop-stick, eyes staring from just beneath lined brows, one lifting ever so slightly. They are just about as worried about eachother as MacBeth would be about Malcolm or any of his lovers if -she- was not one herself. Up to interpretation.

Naming Nightwing as a coward brings Kori's playful look to one of sudden placid grounds, the stick falling down and away before she stes towards this masked man and points it towards his chest. Threatening? Maybe, maybe not. But she sure as X'Hal is dimpling his monkey suit.

"Coward? No. Fool? Maybe. But that depends on where this goes. I am not good at certain messages." A gesture towards Roy in a tip of head and Kori is giving Hood an up-down before the hair-pin descends and snaps away, curling back up into hair that is slowly digitizing into red and black. She hates inducers. With a passion.

"Actually, nah, we volunteered ourselves, mostly because you know, you're operating out of your clan's usual digs. And we at least know this territory better than he does."

Grimacing, Roy shrugs. "Besides, if anyone's a chickenwuss, it's you. What's the matter, can't go back home to Gotham and have it out there? Is the big bad Batty Daddy -that- intimidating?"

Red Hood isn't dropping his guns and he doesn't seem to be afraid of a sharpened stick. His helmet turns slightly to Starfire, "Put that thing away. I'm not a Vampire." Although that could be a fun rumor. He inclines his head some when she finally puts it back in her hair…the inducer getting an unseen narrowing of his eyes.

"No, he's a coward. Sending others to do his dirty work. Because he was too afraid to meet me himself…because he knows I'd shoot him."

Roy's words have him raising the gun to aim at the others forehead, "They aren't my 'clan' and I don't need Gotham." His arm tenses as if he's about to pull the trigger, "Batman can go to Hell. Who -are- you?"

Starfire isn't aiming to be intimidating, her words a low whisper as that gaze shifts away from Hood to the ground, rolling her hair back into the pin, and once it hooks within the inducer fades away the rest of the visage. Dark hair brightens to a red, ombre to orange and yellow at ends. Eyes lose their pupils and go emerald in purity with a reflective surface, the dress, however remains where the skin begins to grow heated with the rise in temperature when he aims the pistol at Roy and insists on insulting Dick.

"No…" Fists form at her sides and begin to glow, perse in hue. "It is not fear…"

If Hood does not move her hand comes up with a spin of her body to try and grip the gun he has aimed at Roy and -lift- him from the ground to bring him face to face with the slowly heating up Tamaranean Princess. If he backs up she presses forward, no matter. Nose to nose is her goal. "If you truly think that, then you do not know him, nor he, you."

Pausing, if the heat was allowed to touch the gun, it's muzzle will be melted beneath her grip, dripping over fingers. "Maybe he was mistaken to send Outsiders to help."

"Oh, I suppose I -could-, since we know who you are, and you got no idea who we are. The lady over there's Koriand'r. Princess of Tamaranean. Captain of the HMS Starfire. You've probably seen her around, usually in adolescent boys' wet dreams -and- kickass women tumblrs."

Pushing his shades up on top of his hair, Roy gives a thumb up gesture. "Roy Harper. Might have seen me hang around a lot with the sidekick club, which we've -long- graduated from, thank you very much. They used to call me Speedy. Nowadays, they call me Arsenal." Reaching down to pick up two chopsticks, Roy waves them while Kori and Jason are doing their things. "So I guess, again, I should point out, the princess's pretty hot, so you may wanna re-think that whole shooting thing."

Maybe it's the glowing fists or the change in appearance, but Starfire's movements have Red Hood ducking and moving away from her. The guns are now both pointed at her. "If I shoot…if I say the word, you'll have a building-full of my men coming at you. Back. Off." He turns to Roy, listening to him as he makes the introductions, but then looks back to the hot (in many ways) woman.

"What, you're here to try and get me to profess any love for that ass? Forget it. I don't care if either of you are sleeping with him or in love with him or what. You wasted your time."

The shift of guns is exactly what Kori wanted, and so instead of nose to nose she settles for body to muzzles. "Shoot. Bring your men." A tip of head towards Roy and her smile flicks, albeit briefly at the mention of sex, love, and life in regards to Dick.

"Is that what it takes for you to sacrifice something for another? Love and 'bedroom Olympics?'. Now I really have to meet your men, are they the same? Because I will let them know their loyalty is a waste of time and top dollar.." A shake of finger.

"I don't consider this a waste of time," Her eyes reflect Red Hood now, a skim from Mask to feet and back with a small smile. "It's enlightening."

A look is cast then to Roy, the smile remaining as hands go up, the glow fades and Kori takes a step back. "You've professed enough."

Though Kori does whisper to Roy. "Are you sleeping with Dick?"

"Aw… is that what's bothering you? That you're not getting enough Dick-love?" Roy responds, canting his head. "Cuz if that's what the problem is, you -really- need to get to know Dick better."

Pause. "What, you never had sleepovers? Though we haven't had one of those in a while… why, you -want- one?"

"He sent you two to threaten me?" That only confirms that Nightwing is a coward! If he thought his bullets would do any good, Red Hood would certainly fire on Starfire, but he's not stupid. He could feel that heat. His helmeted head turns between the two, "You two are crazier than I am."

And that's saying a lot.

"Get out. If you don't have anything to say to me, get out. I -was- going to have them give you that fish you wanted, but now? Not a chance in Hell. Leave. And if you ever come back…or if you send him here, I will find you and I will gun you down." Or in Starfire's case, "I'll bring some Liquid Nitrogen."

Kori's smile is…brightening, if anything, a flash of teeth against purple lined skin of natural orange, narrowing her eyes in mirth. The risen hands fall with a wave and a 'pthdthshh'. "Threaten you?!" A jolt of laughter shakes shoulders as well as her head. "You really are out of the sleepover loop. Red Hood."

All laughter fades away then and a single shoulder rolls in a shrug. "To be honest," A pause and her eyes diverted back to Hood reflect him right back, guns and all. "We need you. He came with concern for you and you piqued our interest. Things are going bad, very bad. Small fish, big fish." Shrug. "He wanted to know if you… Were -you-."

A sweep of hand over him and a loose wave of red hair is shoved behind her ear. "So you all have an evident bad history. "Now he'll know that. But us? We need someone who can get information and knows the streets. People are on edge and need reeled in, and we need paths cleared to ensure what we are to do has no interferance. Let's call it….diplomacy."

"I want my fish, too. You have the best hole in the wall, this side of Chinatown." Stepping back Starfire falls into her seat once more and crosses her legs, tapping the table. "Let the Bat's have Gotham. It's what they want, and he just wanted to know you were okay." A breath and a low whistle. "The mask does you no favors, but I will let him know you're fine and let him be on his way."

"See, this lady? She's the diplomat. I'm just all for taking crime off streets, but like, with a little -less- finality," Roy waves a hand. "She's right, you know. You know how Grayson is. Just cuz you're a little crazy… and I got to tell you, I know how that gets to be like sometimes, but if you -really- want to get down to business, go home. Get some of Alfred's cookies."

Pause. "And if you're not gonna have them give us that fish, you -really- should try it yourself. It's to live for, man."

Red Hood's head turns between the two, "What, you want to -hire- me? You can't afford me." But now his interest is piqued. "What are you asking me to do?"

He then looks to Roy, "Why the Hell does Grayson care? He never cared then. What, is he feeling guilty so now he's pretending to care?" The guns are still in hand, but they aren't exactly aimed at places that could kill with one shot. Maybe just wound.

"What do you know about Alfred's cookies?"

Starfire knows nothing about Alfred's cookies, but if they are lined up with this fish-dish Roy is insistent upon, she figures they must be very good. In fact, as Hood seems a bit perturbed Roy -knows- about them her eyes bat rapidly. "So, cookies do it for you guys, huh? Noted. I'll pay you in cookies." Orn's cookies, but… semantics!

"Hire you? Nah. Work with you. But some things have to be super green." A finger tip presses to the table with that 5th Element phrase. "You can organize people, get them to trust you, believe in you, and fall in line. How deep are you in this?" A gesture to the structure, but she means it all.

Pausing though her eyes go from Hood to Roy and back, lids lowering to veil the look for a moment, head lowering as words come just as low. "He has faults. He doesn't know how to do things correctly when it is not something trained and beaten into him. Consider it his apology and show of care. It's as real as either of you can express." A lean back and her eyes rise with a small knowing smile.

"We are asking you to move on, with us instead." Beat. "Can the cookies be slightly burned?" Hand rises to show a smidgen.

"You know, this would be -much- easier if we just called Alfred and asked him to send him some chocolate chip cookies. You know the kind, chewy in the middle, crispy on the outside, and with chocolate chips that Alfred insists on chopping up himself from those fancy chocolate bars he likes," Roy muses. "Haven't had those in a while, but whenever our sidekick club was over there, you know… I mean, nothing better than that with a tall glass of milk, right?"

He pauses, eyeing Kori as though she'd said something scandalous. "Alfred -never- burns his cookies. Usually if they're burned, we -know- who's been trying to cook without Alfred's permission."

Red Hood is still a little confused as to what's being set on the figurative table. "You want to work for me…?" He looks to Starfire, "What, you want to get into the mafia?" It's not that he's not hiring, but that's usually not how these things work. "Move on where with you? To do what? Organize who?"

Then Roy talks about Alfred's cookies and he falls quiet for a long moment. "Those really were the best cookies," is finally offered quietly.

"We're our own mafia, of sorts. But you have a different skillset we need. As for us working for you?" Handwobble with a squint of one eye. "There's things to work out, evidently. I'm a little noticeable." As is Roy, and when Hood does his homework… It'll all be out there.

The mention of cookies again just has Starfire sighing and hanging her head in relent. "I'll see what I can do about those cookies."

"Well, it's more like, we need ways to take them down with a whole -less- bloodshed. I mean, if you're doing this to get away from the Bats, we get it, but man… if you're going to operate here, it'd be a -lot- easier if people were working with you instead of against you. Plus, well, big brother doesn't really want to bring you in, which is why he sent us. But you know, I think he messed up."

Pause. "He shoulda sent Alfred."

Roy scratches his cheek. "So you know what. Take your time. Think about it. We'll send someone over with Alfred's cookies while you think about it."

"I'm not the type to pull punches. I don't kill indiscriminately. Those who die usually deserve it…scum of the earth and all that. I'm sure you're familiar with the type," Red Hood points out. "If you want me to help 'clean up New York', there are a lot of others doing that. But lay out exactly what you're asking of me and I'll think about it."

As if the timing was planned, a takeout bag is brought in by the guy in the suit and set on the table without comment. It's the fish that Roy was salivating after.

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