Rebooted

October 17, 2016:

Spoiler and Batgirl share a moment.

Clocktower

A locally famous landmark, the Gotham Clock Tower is located in the
Central Business District. Tours haven't run in years, though, since the
building was bought out by a group of bird-lovers known as the Nightingale
Society. Still, it's a well-known part of the Downtown skyline. From the
outside it looks unused, but the clock is clearly maintained as it still
runs on time, and now and again people can be seen coming and going. The
bottom floor looks mostly disused, with a long hallway ending in a bookshelf
full of coffee table books about birds. To either side of the hall are
sparsely furnished rooms. The walls show illustrations of local Gotham
feathery sorts, and charts on bird migrations. Cabinets store various bits
of bird-watching equipment.

The doors to the stairs require a key card to access, probably to deter
vandalism. The upper floors are only accessible by a secret elevator. The
doorways to access it them the stairs have been bricked over and drywalled.
On the living quarters floor, each door requires a keycard and voice
recognition, except for the door to the training facility at the end of the
hall, which requires palm, optical, and voice recognition. The top floor,
however, is the most secure of all.

The pale glow of the four massive translucent clock-faces dominate the four
compass points of the lair, casting everything in a warm light by night, and
cool light by day. the natural brick walls of the buildings exterior are
left visible on one wall while the others are painted a pristine white. The
ceilings have recessed and track lighting, and the floors are smooth pale
wood. There is a lounge area and even a kitchen, as well as other facilities
here. The insulation around the top floor is meant to keep scanners and
eavesdropping equipment from being able to image what's inside.

Welcome to the home of Barbara Gordon and who she has become.

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

The Clocktower was due for cleaning, revamping, renovations, and settled in for Babs' return. But as a dual identity now. Those who knew of Oracle or Barbara, the wheelchair bound daughter of Gotham's renown and runnng Commissioner Gordon, and now the return of yet another costumed vigilante, Batgirl.

The structure remains to have the wheelchair accessible ramps behind hidden views and within the apartment that does not need cloaking - but behind those hidden doors a ramp winds up and into Oracle's Command Center (tm) where the glow of white screens and the winding of exposed wires cast an eerie luminescence against the shadowy backdrop and a small beacon of light coming from the tiny flashlight clutched between Barbara's lips.

A wheelchair is sitting in a far corner of the room, opposite of where the redhead is thrust beneath the large winding metal desk that hosts the network and mainframe she is resituating back to home.

A small zap, a flare of light… "A tsss God… bless.. You do not know who you are messing with." A loud *clank!* another zap with yet another (un)profane utterance and more screens flare to life and data begins to scroll.

"Barbara? Everything ok?" Stephanie calls, poking her head into the darkened space. She offered to help her friend get things resettled, and paused to make some lunch for the two of them. Now, she stands in the doorway with the tray in her hands.

A few fingertips are blackened a bit, red hair is swept back into a bun that is messily falling from place to add to the 'frayed' look, a suck to fingers she wipes them off on her Gotham Blades tank top before rising like a giddy child to her knees in a small spin to have the scrolling data reflect of glass lenses and those green-blue eyes behind. The flashlight is dropped as fingers fly across keys and words begin to blink, the screens flicker like a lightshow in a club and then stabilize.

Firewall Connected, Backup in Process. OracleNet going Live. A robotic female voice fluidly announces success and with that Babs rocks back and smiles to Stephanie.

"Nothing a couple zaps and a firm smack with the butt end of the soldering iron couldn't handle." A quick motion and she is to her feet and offering to take the tray to a small empty table in the corner, detached from her consoles to safely keep spills away - wheelchair on one side, a couple chairs on the other.

"Sorry if my cupboards do not have much for pickings."

Stephanie declines Barbara's offer to take the tray, opting to take it to the table herself. Her own blonder locks are pulled into her usual high pony tail.

"It's fine. I stepped out to grab the few things I thought would make this a bit nicer," she says as the tray is settled down. "I'm glad everything's working again," she adds, eyes flicking to the fingertips. "You sure you're' okay?"

"I bit back. I'm fine. I won this fight." Babs states with a smile that belies the suppressed joy while the systems begin their backups and the blinking lights begin to dance like stars all around the white room, the whole space beginning to look like a Planetarium with how the lights and glows begin to slowly capture around them. It was truly a part of Babs' peace.

Falling into the wheelchair, a leg props up and the goods upon the tray are eyed hungrily, fingers wiggling as if in debate of where to start as an appetite had been forgotten until now. "Thank you, Stephanie. I appreciate it, truly. How are you doing? This move back has had me somewhat absent, but not fully…" A sly glance towards her friend and then back as a bit of food is finally picked and drawn in.

Settling to a chair opposite Barbara, Stephanie watches the lightshow with a faint expression of childlike wonder. It's still awe-inspiring to think that she's even here to witness, let alone on first name basis with the Bats! Her gaze returns to Barbara as those fingers wiggle in anticipation. Steph grins hugely..

"Oh! It's no trouble at all. My pleasure, really." Slight pause. "I'm doing okay. Still trying to decide… I think that maybe … I'm not really sure but… I might go pre.. not fully? What do you mean?"

A bite taken and some is pocketed to the side of cheeks as she sweeps up a drink and even grabs something else to place in front of her. Okay, so really hungry, but when Barbara gets to work she forgets herself. Stephanie also has good taste on what would hit the spot. A swing of the free-dangling leg, booted toe skimming the floor it goes in time with some of the beeps now becoming audible with the pulse of lights.

"Thinking about what?" A sweep of thumb along her lower lip to check from crumbs, pausing now as Babs looks at Stephanie fully and lifts a brow. "Stop thinking. It's about heart."

Though the subject skip Stephanie has with a different fire of question has Babs waving her hand to her databases and glowing light-show. "I have eyes and ears where people shouldn't have them, if you guys needed me I would have come. If you needed me…" As if a lightbulb went off above her head Babs scrambles, digging into jeans pockets, from one cargo hide-away to the next until she pulls free a small comm unit but it is differently wired. Not only will it communicate but a small camera is wired to loop the outside of the earlobe to give video feed for live or recorded.

"This is to me. To here." The Bats going live in 3…2….

Or at least to the Clocktower, but most of the info will be shared to keep them all knit a bit tighter.

"My degree plan," Stephanie relents at the question, even as she smiles that Barbara is eating well right now. Stephanie hides the relief in her gaze by getting herself a small bit of what she made and taking a dainty bite.

It's about HEART.

Stephanie smiles, perhaps ruefully. Heart means she wants to find the way to keep the criminals were they belong and seeing them rehabilitated. One, perhaps just one criminal in particular, but other broken families can be helped along they way… Steph chews fully, swallows, takes a drink, and looks up at the comm-unit.

"That's really cool. I know, if I needed you. I can just send a tweet, and you'd find me," Stephanie says. A tweet, rather than calling directly.

Babs focuses upon Stephanie then, and sees Spoiler despite the lack of 'smoke and mirrors'. The wheelchairs brakes are on, and have been now for over a month except for outside.

Eating is paused, and when Babs rocks back her posture shows exactly who and what she is. A fighter, just like them, but even moreso, a friend, an ear, through hell or high (black) water.

"Tweet me any time Steph. Living two lives is not easy. You have to lie and cheat those you love to do it. Most days despite it, you're alone. But that's the mind, not the heart." Practice what you preach much? Not really ut she tries.

"Just make sure the degree plan is sound." A flick of glass veiled eyes to the comm again and Babs picks back up her food.

"This city isn't easy, it's something to be proud of you got this far. Got here." A flick of eyes and Babs sighs lightly. "But what worries you about it? The pension sucks, let me tell you now. No lies."

Spoiler sighting? Not hard when you know exactly what to look for. Unlike the others, there's very little smoke and mirrors. Steph and Spoiler are both energetic, both driven, both overachievers, both Scouts. The thought of lying to someone she loves is chuckled at. She only put on the mask because it got Dad's attention. If he had given her clues as Stephanie, she likely wouldn't have even adopted a 'secret identity'. Stephanie sips her drink again.

"I'm not worries about retirement. I'm not mega rich, but I'm well off enough that as long as I'm careful with it, I'll be comfortable," says Stephanie.

"No, not that." Babs states, and the food is set aside gingerly, a tap of fingers upon the table and the glasses are slid down the bridge of Babs' nose to stare deadpan across at Spoiler.

A small blip sounds, and Babs stands with the groan of unused pleather wheelchair seat, the robbery in progress within Diamond District shows a video feed. At first it is static, then it clears to digitalization and full view. Kinks…

They'll work out.

"No, it is not the money I mean. Not at all." Babs feeds the relay to the local GCPD precinct nearest, an anonymous flash and fare feeding them angles an directions, as well as relays of how many and their Halloween attire. Within seconds the GCPD is on it and with capable equipment.

"It's not about money." HEART. A glance towards Stephanie as even in the end of this robbery Barbara's own father shows up in heavy tac-gear.

"You have what it takes, Steph. Stop hesitating."

Stephanie looks over, watching the feed as it evens out, and how they respond to her information. It's heartening, really. Especially how Barbara's dad is the complete opposite of her own, showing up to HELP rather than being the CAUSE. She smiles again, slightly watery.

"Thanks, Babs. I try," she offers, though the undertone is that self-critical notes of not-good-enough, never-good-enough.

"Did you want something sweet for desert? I found some frozen berries. I think I can make a cobbler or something," Steph says, bravely pushing away from the self-critical note. If she acts like it's not there then it won't be there. Fake it till you make it. So, it means she doesn't have to think about that degree plan for a little while longer.

Steph hides her emotions like her dad hides That's my Girl.

So she knows exactly what she sees when her gaze shifts back and glasses are righted.

"No. You. Do." A matter of fact statement as she keys in a response to the GCPD and then cuts them off of her droid feed. They got this.

"Your purpose, their purpose.. We're backup. We make sure people live, even ourselves." A deep breath and a second-glance to the screen shot of her father she had powered off.

"Let's do that fruit, slathered over ice-cream, smothered by whipped cream, and loved over a movie!" Beat.

"I can stream the new releases…" Shifty eyes..

That matter of fact statement has Stephanie ducking her head, as if she could dodge the complement she doesn't feel she's earned. It's not possible, but Steph does it anyway. She's stubborn like that. It means she misses Babs looking back at the monitor. What Steph doesn't miss is the shift right into dessert. And the shifty eyes.

"Sure!" Stephanie chirps, bright and eager again. The cloud is gone from the sun, and the blonde almost hops to her feet. "There are a few new movies I haven't gotten a chance to see yet. I'll see if there's popcorn too," she's rambling happily, starting for the kitchen, needing to be up and moving again.

Whether or not a response is had, Babs feeds out an invite, one non-critical to the Bat-Fam, that extends them an invite to the "old Clocktower" but as the lights pulse and the two sit within the belly of the digi-Beast, it is otherwise. The clock tower even chimes per the hour again…

A peek to the scene Babs had shut off and it shows most of the criminals apprehended and the police safe and sound… Even Jim among the flashing lights and NEWS reels.

Blip

"Hallows-Eve is around the corner. Scary or not?" Babs inquires as she pursues Steph and sets a feed to go to her television, giving them ALL OF THE CABLE!!

…Sometimes, you just have to be real. Check's in the mail!

"Not. I love handing out candy," Stephanie replies as she starts pulling out all the ingredients onto the counter. Frozen berries, nutmeg, cinnamon, vanilla, suger, flour, salt, eggs, baking powder, baking soda, her phone with a quick-bake cobbler recipe from Google queued up. A sauce pan on the heating element and Steph starts cooking, cleaning as she goes.

"Yeah. I used to…." Handing out candy? A thing she did between self-defense practices while she was kept at home - "safe".

Not any more. Not to self, not by her True Father, when it came time to step up and accept.

A small tic came to her right cheek, just beneath eye as she pulls glasses from her face and rubs the bridge of her nose in a pinch that circulates outwards. She was not the only one damaged when a bullet blew into her spine. Even Steph has her own burdens, baggage, a reason. And Babs might "know" but is not about to question it. Just the same as Steph smiles instead of inquiring hen she stands without the aid of braces. Neither of them are accepting of the past…

"How long does that have to bake?" Another alert is flaring red and blue flickers across the Planetarium ceiling arched above.

"I bet we can be back in time for dinner and dessert." From the shadows Batgirl is present where glasses were, a flare of light across the masks viewfinder, the suit zipped up and sealing the golden symbol among the shadows….

…Over her ear shrouded in red hair, a comm is laced like an ear-cuff.

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