Forget it, Jake. It's Chinatown. (pt.1)

December 01, 2017:

Taskmaster tries to assemble some of SKWAD to seek a little revenge on the 'League of Losers' only a freshly returned Harley Quinn shows up.


NPCs: None.



Mood Music: [*\# None.]

Fade In…

If any place in Gotham can be called a melting pot it is Chinatown. The new age mingles with the ancient in this part of the City of Yesteryear, it rivals Hong Kong in it's glowing nightlife and diversity to style. The technological embrace shines with massive 3D holograms being projected over the city streets instead of actual billboards, very much like something out of Blade Runner 2049 or Ghost in the Shell.

The constant dark of Gotham mingles with a smog overhead that makes illumination from below blur, rainbows of smudge on a backdrop of darkness. Truly beautiful in the right lighting. Lighting like right now, just after dusk when the city is between heartbeats of night an day.

Overhead the Stagg Enterprises airship or zeppelin's silhouette is visible as an outline projecting out of it is the gloom. More testament of old to new. A light drizzle of Atlantic coastal rain can be felt here and there it isn't much but it encourages some of the more conscious or fashion minded who litter the streets to employ use of umbrellas.

The man with the navy blue hoodie, black cargo pants and combat boots standing outside of a Tea House is not one of those. The Tea House wasn't is interest though, a vendor with a Chinese Dragon on the side of it that is ironically serving hotdogs is. He isn't exactly the time to 'go out on the town' without a reason and calling the members of SKWAD is very much unlike the skull themed mercenary. A gloved hand thumbing over a cellphone screen while his other hand flicks out a wad of bills to pay for his bowl of fresh steamed ramen and veggies. Wooden chopsticks included with each bowl.

SKULL: Meet location 'PIN' Show your weird faces before I forget them. Srs. Not srs.

SKULL: Are all of you always late? Getting bored and its starting to rain.

That was sent a long enough ago they should be here by now as far as Taskmaster is concerned. It might be casual it may be business.


There's a sharp snap, followed by an obnoxious cow-chewing-cud sound. "Heya," remarks the gal responsible, the svelte blonde with curled pigtails, skin-tight and ripped jeans, hi-top Converse sneakers (one red and one black), red tank and black leather jacket as she walks up with her extra bounce-filled step and leans against the wall of a building. "I ain't late for your information," Harley says in defense of her tardiness, her face an animated portrait of matter-of-fact non-apology. "I'm fashionably late. It's a girl thing that's totally okay." She blows another bubble in her gum and pops it loudly with a wide grin. "Y'miss me, sweetie pie?"


A practiced and honed talent is required when someone wants to always keep their face hidden from view. It's a combination of techniques, angling and lighting that Taskmaster employs subconsciously when hes not wearing his mask to keep himself obscured when not using an Image Inducer or actual makeup.
It's not as though he has to go to great lengths to keep himself hidden from Harley Quinn or even Regan Wyngarde as they are two individuals who have seen his actual face, that stranger he himself doesn't even know. The face he considers his own is the skull. It's the one he wears and knows the most. It is who he identifies as. Always has if you ask him.

"Harley." The voice is deep, almost as if he had swallowed gravel and not the noodles disappearing past his cowl. "Your idea of fashion… " The sentence doesn't finish instead he skips forward.

"Do you want the honest answer or a sugar coated one?" A flat question but he does offer the noodles and chopsticks over. "I texted Regan, Rose is MIA. Ivy always ignores my texts and June… who knows if we're getting her or the witch. Safer just to avoid." A rundown, this means hes serious as he never calls them all together. He usually just party crashes at their Gotham Arms pad. "How many months has it been since I seen you last anyways?" A scent, the bubblegum, music, a few images fill his mind of him and her, the 'Memory Palace' he holds anything worthwhile in accessed by the trigger of smells and musical cues. It's taken some practice but it helps him retain things he wishes to. There are some fond ones of the Clown Princess he holds for himself but he'll never admit that to anyone especially her. She is… as he has learned… incorrigible and volatile all rolled together in one colorful surprise package.

Horns of a passing taxi blare loud. Something flies low overhead, no one pays it more mind than a passing glance. Not a superhuman no. Just a car, those things fly if you have the right permits or work for something like SHIELD. This one looks commercial, far too red and fancy to be a superspy. Expensive. It's like begging for people like Taskmaster or Harley Quinn to rob them.


Does she want the honest answer? No, if the tongue briefly sticking out in Taskmaster's direction is any real indication. She doesn't expect she'll really like it.

Harley waves off the food, with a finger pointing at her bared teeth by way of explanation. Not quite ready to give up her fresh and still stretchy bubblegum. "It's been a minute," she tells him around her gum, her reply vague enough that it's not likely very useful. But then, after a playful roll of her eyes, she gives him a little more of a sway as she leans more heavily against the wall. Watching her feet, the clown turns her toes up towards the sky and wiggles them a little inside her shoes. "It's gotta be, what? Three months? Somethin' like that. Kinda lost track."


"You've always been a good source of entertainment." Taskmaster shoots and misses the net in an attempt to sound even remotely affectionate to the Jesterette. He is honestly unsure if she sought that in asking about being missed and caught it late. Never can tell with the certifiable. Hell, he cannot tell with the supposed sane.

The noodles taken up once more in a final bite before being thrown at a nearby dumpster, a bit of a reach from where they stand but he manages. It's then that she will feel the gaze upon her, an updown once over that actually makes the hood tip. It's a drawn out pause and lingers it's like he just scanned her body or gave her the far too slow creepy once over shes used to from men who are after a gal like her not for that zany personality but for the gymnast build. Maybe he is checking to see if she sprouted an extra appendage.

"Three months or so? Likely long enough… yeah. You're looking you again. Good."
A gloved thumb juts over Taskmaster's shoulder across the street towards a lit up sign of two crossed swords. A katana and a Chinese long sword.

"We are going to go in there and have a sit. I was hoping for more of us but we should be able to handle our own."


Entertaining? Yeah, she can live with that. And he may feel it's a miss, but the blonde is rabbit-swift to gobble up the tiny bit of praise with a theatrical appreciation as she spreads her arms wide and bows at the waist. Good source of entertainment? "I'm the best entertainment," she corrects with an exaggerated wink. But then, she straightens. "But were ya' worried? Doncha' worry 'bout little ol' me," she tells him, tilting her head to drastically to one side and then the other as she stretches out her new a little while she weaves her fingers and stretches them out too.

Then moving forward with a few straight-legged paces, she moves to hook Taskmaster's larger arm with her own. "Even though yer the absolute sweetest fer it." Because that's clearly what was going on here. "Lead the way!"

She chews loudly a moment, and then looks up at the wayfinder with bright blue eyes open wide with the sort of vacancy that really makes a body wonder the IQ up there. "What're we sittin' for, anyway?"


Taskmaster's response is a laugh, a ripple rumble of 'hehs' that don't quite reach the mania levels shes accustomed with her usual partners in crime. Not that he isn't a fan of theatrics as they have a time and place. It's a method of branding for some after all.

"Absolute sweetest. Huh?" The hooded man muses before fishing a finger in to his own cargo pants pocket sliding out a white object one that he pushes in to the shadows, affixing the skull to his face. Their walk carries them across the packed street and he doesn't shy his arm out of hers.

"We are going to send a message to some 'friends' that we are still down to party. You will recognize them when we get inside." A pause once on the cement, he uses his free hand to push his mask on a little more snugly, a quick mental rundown of his weapons.

"You are probably eager for a good stretch anyways, right?"


"Sure am!" replies the harlequin brightly over another pop of her gum, her gait changing so that she crosses her steps in front of her with her free arm stretching out beside her as though she were walking some balance beam. Gravel crunches under the small pivots she makes on the balls of her feet. "An' I always like seein' old friends. Showin' 'em that I care."

That outstretched hand folds back in at the elbow so the blonde can rest her fingertips over her heart. "Because that's just the wonderful sort of person I am, yanno. Rememberin' to visit people like that." Except that she didn't. The amnesiac did. But that's irrelevant.


"Care. Yeah thats what these people need. They're fortunate we're even giving them some attention." Taskmaster declares while opening the door in to the Clashing Sword. A nameless pub just known for it's logo.

The inside is covered in a blanket of fog and smoke, thick and nose offensive for those tender to such things chairs are scattered across the central floor from the two bars inside and booths line each wall vanishing in to a dip beyond where the floor drops to a pool room. Its not exactly crowded in here and a classic jukebox is playing what sounds like TOOL. Neon lights string along the corners from one end to the other as bright on dim appears to be a general overbearing theme in Chinatown.

"I don't know what they're calling themselves, those Losers who attacked us months ago. I've had some recent downtime with 'work' and Waller hasn't called us out to make any noise lately so… I figure we can bust some heads and remind these idiots why we're the ones they pick the table scraps up offa." The 'League of Losers' thats what they had been calling them back when. Their last encounter put them in an actual open siege against the Gotham Arms. Poison Ivy still has a souvenir in the form of a mustached swordsman. Somewhere. Taskmaster doesn't really want to think of that plant zombies current state of affairs.

"They've recently bought this place." Taskmaster adds quietly while holding the door for his colorific companion.


…To Be Continued…

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