Trust Fall

August 27, 2017:

Canary gets +1 for the assist when Batgirl is hard at work. In a long, overdue reunion, the two old friends make time for more.

Gotham - East End

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions: Batman

Plot:

Mood Music: None.


Fade In…

It's nearing midnight in Gotham City, and Dinah Drake-Lance may very well be the only one who hasn't seen the series finale of that show, just yet. No, instead of staying at home in front of her laptop with a carton of Chinese food, she's taken to the moldy, grim streets of Gotham to follow her own calling. With an earbud in her ear dialed to the police scanners, about a mile of fishnet-clad legs are pincered around the main body of a motorcycle. Casually, she's driving down the darker streets of Gotham's East End, where tenements and the worst Gotham has to offer often thrive.

But so far…no fish. Just a needle on the motorcycle's gas gauge that has begun to slide dowards from a full tank.

*

Barbara Joan Gordon is well known by friends and family to be responsible, intelligent and loving, the bright sort of woman that even the Joker couldn't break. She is her dad's favorite thing in the world, and not a person in her neighborhood does not know who she is.

Which is a good thing, given that ever since she recovered movement with her legs Batgirl has gotten… a little wild. Hence why when Black Canary finally gets wind of something fishy going down, it is the voice of Barbara she listens to first, yelling "OH NO, YOU WON'T!"

Jumping from the rooftop of one of the buildings of the street she is currently in, Dinah can watch almost in slow motion as Batgirl, in her sleek armored suit, falls down several stories before crashing into a window. As that yellow-and-black cape vanishes inside the building, Dinah is sure the fall must have hurt SOME, if not killed the girl, but whatever is happening, there is something going on inside that building.

And Batgirl seems to be going all out to stop it.

*

The Black Canary breaks the cardinal rule of the road: She takes her eyes off of it. Up and away, her blue eyes travel to stare through the domino mask and caked on black paint over her eyes to gawk at Batgirl at work. Mouth agape in the upward stare, her motorcycle blows through the red light…lucky that there is no cross-traffic.

"Looks like someone just got a jump on getting their case of the Mondays." Canary mutters to herself and takes note of the window Batgirl went into. She pops the clutch and downshifts her motorcycle, coasting it through a dimly lit parking lot towards the alley beneath the window.

Canary takes off at a run, stuffing her keys into the inner pocket of her leather jacket. Cuffed, black boots splash through a puddle and she leaps, kicking off of a dumpster to catch the hanging ladder belonging to the fire escape.

Sometimes being a heroine looks like cat burglary. Tonight is no exception.

*

Black Canary climbs the stairs to find Batgirl in the hallway of an apartment building for low income families. Not only that, she gets right at the moment a visibly limping Barbara toughens up her bad leg (made bad by bad life choices) to duck a pipe thrown her way by what looks like a man covered in small green scales.

While she is on her fours on the ground, the redhead launches a hook that esnares the mutant's feet, which she tugs to bring him down. Now both on the ground, the man seems to turn towards Barbara and sees Dinah right behind Batgirl. Deciding fighting is no longer an option it raises its claws up in the air before cutting Batgirl's line and preparing to throw himself from the vault in the stairway, right down to the first floor, a jump Barbara herself won't make in this state.

Still it is visible she is going to try, much to the chagrin of her whole body, which very much enjoys being alive.

*

Black Canary doesn't question Batgirl. She leaps through the window, spreading and shattering extra glass that the caped woman didn't break free from the pane on her way in. Leather clad forearms in front of her eyes, Black Canary lands in a roll and plants her hand against the carpeted floor, springing off after the both of them.

"Friendly on your six, Batgirl!" Canary calls out from behind in her run, dipping to pick up the angled end of the lead pipe from the ground. Coming up fast on Barbara, Dinah hurdles the Batgirl, pipe in hand. "Trust fall! Get my hand!"

Black Canary leaps into the stairwell after the green-scaled mutant and vaults over the railing, twisting to fall through the empty space between winding flights of stairs. As she falls, she extends a hand behind her, fingers ready to clutch.

Because at the last rung of railing before the bottom floor, she's poised to hook the pipe into the railing…and swing Batgirl after her prey.

*

Barbara is relatively surprised to see Dinah, and although she does smile, the woman also seems to be fairly shocked at the sight. She was so hoping nobody would see her in one of her… stress relief runs! Nonetheless, she nods and follows Black Canary with a gleeful grin on her ruby lips, and throws herself after Dinah.

The impromptu partnership feels natural, and she flows with the blonde crimefighter as if they rehearsed it before. As crazy as it sounds, Batgirl and Black Canary manage to make it work, and as she swung towards the scaled man, Barbara crashes on him at full force.

The man falls on the floor with Batgirl straddling his back, the woman's lush form obviously straining from what must have been hours of running and fighting. Even as she ties the mutant's hands behind his back, she doesn't seem to be in a hurry to stand, but a smile is there. At least she can run now, run enough that she can feel her legs might explode.

"H-how did you find me, Black Canary," she asks, peering over her shoulder.

*

The swing isn't without it's damage. Dinah's body weight takes on Barbara's for a half of a second, swinging the woman as their combined weight jerks against the pipe. Black Canary's shoulder protests, but she hangs on just long enough to fling Barbara forward. Dinah lets go when the muscles in her shoulder start their scream, throwing Black Canary through the stairwell door after her sudden crimefighting partner.

Seeing the scaled man crashed into like a freight train is worth the pain, though. It brings a momentary smile to Dinah's face as she skids on the carpet to a stop, palm pressing to the inside of her shoulder, lips warbling into an unspoken 'Owwwwww…'.

"Find?" Canary laughs through her ache and looks down to the masked woman's face. With nowhere else to be, Canary starts her leisurely stroll towards the vigilante pile. "You're saying that as if you're capable of being tracked. No, no, no." Canary shakes her head; her long, blonde hair swaying. "I looked up and saw a pissed of bat chasing something. Our patrols crossed paths."

Black Canary stops against the wall, wriggling her arm to work out the mote of numbness that's taken it over.

"Who's our new friend, here?"

*

As the mutant remains limp under Barbara, the woman stands up with a groan. With her perp bound there is no reason to keep riding the man. Instead she just turns to look at Dinah, eyeing the blonde with that pleased, long smile on her ruby lips.

"Eh. Sorry about that… I… you were NOT supposed to see me tonight, but I guess I got a little carried away," says Barbara, being honest despite her embarassment. She is supposed to be the girl scout, after all. She looks at the mutant, and shrugs, frowning behind her mask.

"This one I found beating on some of Falcone's men by the landfill. One of them had bite marks all over, so I imagine this is the culprit. I don't know if he can even talk, but he is STRONG and I could barely hurt him with my punches. Had to really pick my shots." Barbara talks to Dinah while she observes the creature, who is very much alive.

"Should leave him to the police, check out later, see what they find. But… I am going to need some help with that. Not sure I can carry him, or anyone, anywhere." With that, she smiles again, and cocks an eyebrow, "Your shoulder good? Need a massage, Canary?" She grins, and gives Dinah's good arm a soft, friendly little punch.

*

Dinah shares her own smile with Barbara Gordon. Like an inside joke, the edge of Dinah's lip quirks upwards. The top of her cheek pats at the lower sweep of her black domino mask, exposing a smear of black paint when the mask bends. One eye flutters in a wink, and then the blonde is looking down to the mutant while she talks.

She doesn't suspect the light jab coming, not one bit.

"Ow! Hey, come on, I sacrificed this arm for a good cause." Canary twists her shoulder away from Batgirl with a chuckle, taking the turn of her body as ample time to look up and down the hallway. "Besides, I doubt your belt is packing all the necessities: accupuncture needles, candles, 'Sounds of the Orient' on compact disc…"

Like riding a bike. Canary devolves into her normal charmed sarcasm, but as she presses her boot away from the wall and moves to stand on her own two feet, she tucks a lock of her blonde hair past her ear and looks down to Barbara's leg, assessing.

"For what it's worth, though, you don't have to apologize to me. I love jumping through windows and, I gotta tell ya," Dinah folds her arms beneath her breasts and looks to the other costumed vigilante. "I kind of like it better when they run. When they give up easily, half the fun right out the window, you know?"

Dinah crouches down, reaching for the mutant's shoulders to pick him up.

"It's been too long." Dinah comments. "You been okay?"

*

"It is so cute when you smile, I can see your rancoon mask underneath~," teases Batgirl, grinning at the blonde as they leave with the perp like it is just another day at work. Barbara is visibly limping, even though by the subtle cues on her face, from how she looks ahead instead of Dinah and softly chews on her bottom lip, the pain must be way worse than it looks.

"Oh God yes. When they run is way better than when they turn themselves in! I knoooow! Just don't let 'him' hear you say it. He would be all like 'You need to be so wasteful, Batgirl. Efficiency and brutality are the key to striking fear into the hearts of the scum of Gotham'," she says, even doing her own version of the Batvoice.

Yes, she does look over her shoulder to check if he isn't right behind her. Just a vice you develop when Batman is a coworker and mentor.

"I will never not be okay again, Canary. I mean, after all that happened? Yeah. I will never not be okay again, no matter what. We don't get second chances often, you know? What about you? How goes life? Are you and you-know-who still D-A-T-I-N-G?" Of course she was going to ask. "Can you give me a ride to my bike? Left her a few streets that way! We can leave him here, bound to this gate."

*

"You laugh now, but this black stuff doesn't come off as easy as I'd like," Canary's smile upgrades to a grin, teeth flashing into the shoulder-carry she gives to the mutant. She sags under the weight and peers under his arm to Batgirl. "It's like that one bit of mascara you can't get off your eyelid without getting soap in your eye? THE WORST. But it's like a backup mask if someone knocks mine off."

At the gate, the weight-battered Black Canary shrugs the 'perp' off of her shoulder with a huah. The unconscious mutant rolls off of her body into a tiny pile, which has Canary leaning over at the waist, pulling and positioning him to an upright position. The cackle that clicks off of her tongue might seem to bystanders like disrespect for the mutant as she nudges his head from side to side to get it to lay straight, but truly, she's heard Batman talk this way. It's hi-larious.

"Oh no, no, I am exactly two beers short of talking about the fact that I'm way too busy picking up my own pieces to D-A-T-E." Dinah points with a cocked eyebrow right between Batgirl's eyes. "You stop." Orders, yet still, Canary smiles and gives a playful shoulder-to-shoulder nudge in passing, head jerking towards the lot where she stashed her bike. "I got a new place and this? This is what I do now."

The keys jingle in Dinah's black-painted fingertips. Dinah turns her head to glance through strands of her blonde hair, over her shoulder, to Barbara as they walk.

"You know, maybe it's you who needs a massage. I know a guy in Chinatown. We should get together soon and catch up proper like. I'll gush about how happy I am to see you on two feet, dodge questions about dating, drop you off so you can get your chakras realigned. It'll be just like old time, Batgirl."

*

"You are using the wrong solvent, Canary. I swear it, things get much easier when you use the homemade stuff I make. I should give you some samples, get you hooked, and then charge for every small bottle. I could build an empire off the backs of my best friends! I mean, this is living the dream, right," asks Barbara in jest, a smile on her lips as she laughs.

"What?! I have to get you drunk before going around getting nosy about my friend's personal life? The rules have changed, I see. We've changed," teases Barbara, looping her arms around Dinah's waist when they climb on the motorcycle. For a moment there the redhead rests her forehead against the other woman's back, and sighs, pleased to be close to her friend again, but before any comment can be given of her weirdness, Batgirl recomposes.

"You know what? Okay. Chinatown, Dinah's Guy, massage and gossip day should be a thing that happens and I am totally okay with that. But you pay. You invited me! Who knows? Maybe I can even give you some mascara solvent in return!"

As they ride, Barbara remains silent for the most part, cheek pressing against the other woman's shoulderblades, eyes almost drifting close. Barbara seldom sleeps these days, afraid she might wake up in her wheelchair somehow, but she feels it coming to her. "I am glad to be back. I am glad to see you again. I've missed this."

*

It really is just like old times, the way Canary scoots up on the bikes seat and uses the key to turn the ignition on. There's a raw aggression, a feeling of power, that comes from kick-starting a Harley, but with Babs on the backside, the angle just doesn't work right. Key it is, and when the kickstand is up and the clutch on the left handlebar is tugged on, Dinah rests easily against Batgirl's weight.

"Sell a thousand bottles of the stuff and you'll get the pink bat-cycle, won't you?" Canary jerks her head to one side to keep her hair from flying in Barbara's face when the bike takes off and growls on the straightaway down the street. "I can just see it now, you fighting crime on the back of a bike with a license plate that reads: Number One Huckster."

Through the leather and the sewn in patch in the shape of a canary, Dinah's lungs tangibly empty in a relaxed sigh. Though she shields herself in a wall of her own witty 'isms, the scrappy blonde seems relieved, too. It's a momentary respite in an evening of searching for trouble, a quasi-obsession, and each of them has their own reasons. It's rare that the reason isn't lined in some manner of darkness.

"You don't have to get me drunk to fess, you know. It's just better with a drink." Dinah finally responds once the bike stops and Barbara is unloaded. Hands on the bars, Dinah tilts her head to watch Baraba unhorse. "But we're going to do this, absolutely, side by sides or something! I have a new number under my name, and since I can't give it to you out in the open like this, I know you can find it." Dinah smiles broadly. "Hunt me down and we'll make a day of it. It'll be fun. I need some fun right about now."

Dinah's smile weakens to the sentimental. She scoots back to sit fully on her bike seat and just huffs at the redhead, as if wondering what to do with the woman and all of the trouble that comes with her. Eventually, after a short stare, she settles one squeezing Barbara's upper arm, then lightly batting the side of her leg, a leg she's standing on, with a playful wink.

"Missed you, too." Dinah says warmly.

Black Canary's wrist turns on the throttle, and her bike rushes off into the night.

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