Clued Up

September 28, 2014:

Vorpal and Midnighter help Spoiler take out the trash, and Robin complicates things. Again

Spoiler's Home. A run down home full of wannabe supervillains.

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Mood Music: None.


Fade In…

Night time in Gotham, and a silent figure is sitting on a rooftop, a cape pulled down over her head, the aubergine letting her sit in the shadows. She is watching the street below, supposedly, but her gaze is unfocused, and her arms are wrapped around her knees, the drooping shoulders speaking for themselves. The cape, wrapped around her, conceals some home made repairs to her outfit, the purple material cut and resewn along her side, and she sighs, shifting position, one elbow resting on her knees, her chin on her clenched fist.

There is someone else in the shadows. Someone who can be invisible and almost undetectable- unless you had infra-red technology, of course. Fortunately for most Gothamites, this powerset is pretty rare and unique- and in this instance, it belongs to a very familiar face. His night-time eyes make it easier to spot people hiding- again, a fortunate thing for Gothamites that there weren't any more cat-people hanging out in Gotham. There was a Catwoman, but she wasn't really a cat. Just like he has heard that there is some woman out there who goes by the name of Cheshire… and doesn't even wear purple. Or smile that much. Which is why he had to go for the obscure-but-related name of 'Vorpal' while the woman got to gallivant off with his rightful name… and didn't even have the decency to stick to theme.

Some people. Honestly.

"Hey…" his voice comes from the rooftop across from Spoiler. He appears softly, fading into focus sitting on the very edge. No threatening appearances, no surprises. He has an idea of what her mood is going to be— Robin came over for an extended therapy session over coffee and futons. Her identity's been compromised… so he hasn't ruled out the fact that she may greet him with a thrown knife.

Her expression, although unseen, is loud in her body language. Nobody is welcome right now and she doesn't stand up, her look at him utterly unfriendly. "Oh perfect. Just come to round the night off?" The snark is obvious and her tone doesn't give him an ounce of welcome to it. She clenches her other fist, letting it join the first, her chin propped on both as she turns back to glaring at the harmless alleyway below. "I suppose he ran to you and told you everything." Angry. Bitter, and somehow weary.

"I know you were hurt." Vorpal can read the language loud and clear. But he's not good at following directions, sometimes. He doesn't depart. He also doesn't mention Tim. "Hey… it happens. All sorts of shit happens in this business, and you've got all the right to be as pissed off as you feel. I've gotten hit, too, shot by beams. It's awful and it hurts for days… how's it healing?" he asks.

Keep it entirely to her experience and her circle. Don't mention Tim, don't mention the unmasking unless she brings it up.

There is someone else in the shadows. Someone who can be almost invisible and undetectable. And he doesn't cheat; it's skill and training. The building one over is taller and he watches the two from its higher vantage. One he recognizes, one he doesn't. So he listens, to learn who the unknown one is. And to get a better idea of who the known one is.

"Vorpal." His name is tired, the anger in the look he gets sharp, and she uncurls, moving slowly, her hand dropping to her side as she faces him. "It's healing. He tell you I lost my bike? He cut my outfit up too…" The rest goes unspoken, the unmasking, but her anger rises again and she draws her shoulders back, giving Vorpal a Look (tm). "He told you everything." Flat, a demand of a real reply this time.

"He didn't, Spoiler. All he told me was that you were hurt, and he took you to the hospital, and that he's concerned. And he told me he had to unmask you to take you to the hospital. But he didn't tell me who you were, and I didn't ask, because what he found out trying to save your life is not for him to tell, only you." The cheshire holds up a hand, trying to go for a calming gesture. "Please, I understand. You may think I don't… but I do. He could have protected your identity and watched you bleed out to death. He knew you were going to hate him for it, but he did what he had to do to save you. If he had dropped you at the hospital in your costume, you would have most likely gotten arrested at the most, or your identity now could be Vox Populi. Instead, only one little Robin knows it."

"And he's not singing. Because, however much of a fumbler he may be, he's not that kind of guy. Look.. I know what it's like. I had my identity exposed early on, that's why I no longer have a secret identity."

Young. Inexperienced. Discovering the world is a shit hole and that making it a better place is not a job for the weak. Like so many idealistic, young heroes she'll either learn or she'll give up. Or she'll die. Sounds like she narrowly avoided that already. Better get used to it, girl. Midnighter leaps across the alley, the couple stories height difference meaningless as he lands in a three point landing. Softly, quietly, but not soundlessly.

The side her hand rests on has a resewn patch to it in her costume, a sign of the cutting Robin did to try and stem the bleeding, and she favours it cautiously, her blue eyes narrowing through the mask at Vorpal. She is silent for a moment before she scuffs her foot against the roof, turning to sit down abruptly, "I need to keep mine, there are good reasons for it." The words are flat, but her head lifts, the soft sound heard and she stares into the shadows for a moment, before she shakes her head. "I guess." She puts her head into her hands, hiding her face for a moment. "He complicates it. This is meant to be simpler, Vorpal."

"Nothing is ever simple, Spoiler. Unfortunately. I was supposed to just work in the warehouse, eat, sleep. Next thing you know you get impaled through the chest by a shard of a cursed mirror, you die and you merge souls with some sort of crazy cat god, and you're the Cheshire Cat… but complicated doesn't mean worse. Just a little harder to get right."

Vorpal's ears twitch, catching the sound of the landing. His hearing is finer than a human's, and he is instantly turning around, crouching. "We've got company!" he hisses the alert, the night lighting up in a purple glow as a vorpal sword appears in his hand, a chaos construct. Even with night-seeing eyes, it will take him a few seconds to positively identify Midnighter, depending on how visible he makes himself.

Slowly, Midnighter golf claps, the leather of his gloves thudding dully. "Very good, Vorpal. 'A' plus for being alert." Which kind of implies Spoiler gets an 'F'. He walks forward enough to be visible though the all black of his costume makes that more a matter of definition.

"Cheshire Cat…" The mumble is soft, under her breathe, "I guess I fell through the looking glass." Mild snark, almost like herself. Spoiler is slower than usual, moving cautiously as she rises to her feet, her hand protecting that side, her gaze searching the shadows for what Vorpal sees, and then Midnighter is clapping, her flush of anger unseen behind the mask. "Oh perfect, an overly dramatic villain of the piece. Friend of yours, Vorpal?" Snark, back in full, and she straightens, leaving her side alone.

"Well, I'll say this: You're at least better prepared than Alice." Perhaps she was at her best when she had something to be snarky about? That's a thought that crosses through Vorpal's mind. "He's not a villain," he says to Spoiler. He doesn't go as far as calling Midnighter a hero, though, but at least that should count for something. And the fact that he dismisses the blade.

"Something going on? Am I being called?" Vorpal askes, vaguely enough so as not to mention Waller.

It's not the first time he's been mistaken for a villain. It happens regularly enough that Midnighter just smiles when Spoiler does it. Called? "Not by me." he answers. "I was nearby and heard you. I wanted to make certain you didn't require assistance." He looks Spoiler over then back to Vorpal.

Teenagers can roll their eyes and, given the mask, they can see the expressive movement as Spoiler turns away, taking a seat again. "I'm a huge threat to him. Massive. Fierce and dangerous." Sarcasm is just one more service we offer, with a side order of snark and pissiness. The movement is pained though, the stiffness of her body obvious. "Who is he, Vorpal? Friend of yours?" The tone suggests that, right now, in her mind, friends of Vorpal aren't the gold standard of associates…

"We've worked together before," Vorpal answers. He'd prefer for the man to introduce himself, since he'd rather not step on anyone's toes. "I appreciate the concern. We were just touching base and talking about… the life in general."

He's got a thick skin, really, so Spoiler's disdain doesn't register. He's also very aware that she is dealing with a lot, so she gets a pass. But he's wary aboutwhat Midnighter might do. Well, he's seen what Midnighter does. The only question is whether or not he's easy to anger.

Vorpal's summary is both accurate and sufficient. They've worked together. "You can call me the Midnighter. And you're Spoiler. You haven't taken enough drugs to be out in costume." Which leads to the question as to how many drugs are too many to be crime fighting. "You're favoring your side and telegraphing your weakness to anyone who looks at you. Especially in Gotham, that could be deadly." No charge for the advice.

The glance at Vorpal is thoughtful and then the Midnighter is accurately summarising her, and she rises to her feet, taking two steps forward, her hands clenching at her side. "Great, hey Midnighter." Sarcasm, and a tone in her voice that is truly, for once, bitter and angry. "If I had a choice right now, I'd be home with cocoa and a blankie but I can't, so I thought I'd find a quiet rooftop, hide out for a bit. Maybe I need more drugs, or…" She cuts off the flow of words, tightening her lips against giving out more details, her cape flaring as she turns away from them, folding her arms across her chest, her shoulders tense.

"Why can't you be at home?" Vorpal asks, suddenly worried. He leaps across the rooftop to come closer to Spoiler- it's a graceful leap, that of a natural gymnast. "… I know you have no reason to trust me, but… what's going on?"

Of course. If she went to the hospital… "Your family knows? Do they suspect?"

"Or?" Midnighter prompts, remaining where he is as Vorpal leaps to her emotional aid. "Maybe Vorpal can supply it. Or some cocoa and a blankie." The power of chaos magic is limitless right? An anvil blankie?

Spoiler turns her head, giving Vorpal a look, a gesture taking in her side, "Suspect?" And then she is laughing, the hysteria in the laughter obvious, her hands lifting up to where her hair would be, had she not shoved it in the back of her mask. It fades to a hiccuping giggle, and she shakes her head, "He didn't know, he didn't get it yet, did he?" The question to Vorpal is quiet and she gives them both a mocking curtsy, stiffly done, "I am The Spoiler, the Cluemaster's nemesis. He and his friends are in my home. He shot me and fucked up my bike." Half the story, anyhow, and she glances at Midnighter, "A home without them in it."

Vorpal frowns. The Cluemaster? "Oh fuck… the goddamned Cluemaster. Is in your house?"

He ponders for a moment and looks towards Midnighter. "… The Cluemaster is in her home." It's a veiled question: Should we?

"Hey… Spoiler. Look." Vorpal reaches out to touch her gently on the shoulder. "Why don't you come over to my place and spend the night there? Take your time to recover there? I've got a comfortable futon you can use." He and Changeling could go and sleep over at his dorm room at ESU. Of course, poor Bunker would have to deal with Spoiler when he arrived home… but Miguel was a total sweetheart. You couldn't possibly hate Miguel.

But he had the impression that she could find a way, in the mood she was in.

Midnighter's not sure why the villain is in Spoiler's home but he doesn't really care either. "So I heard." he tells Vorpal then looks back to Spoiler. "You should have said so immediately." Instead of moping. "Take us there and we'll kill them." He sounds completely certain that that will be the outcome.

Spoiler gives Vorpal a look, half suspicious, half uncertain, before she turns to face them slowly. The caution in trusting either offer is obvious, her blue eyes narrowing, "I…" She shakes her head, clearing her mind from the fog of emotions, her reply to Midnighter slow in coming, "I didn't think it was anyone else's problem. I was handling it…" Badly. Very badly. "If I take you there, there are things you should know, and if you tell anyone I'll kill you." She means it, her tone flat.

"You are not alone, Spoiler. You never have been." Vorpal is dead serious. He's not quite into the 'kill' bit of the equation… but the way he figures it, all he has to do is do what he always does, and Midnighter will happen to the other people. Midnighter happened, that was the best way Vorpal could put it.

"I thought you knew. Cats are good at keeping secrets."

Midnighter smiles at Spoiler's threat. That's an attitude he's pleased to see. "And what should we know?" Though he sounds amused, he never turns down a briefing so it's more at Spoiler's general attitude than anything else. "Please include the number of people you expect to be there and their general capabilities." He'll know as soon as he sees them, of course, but it doesn't hurt to be forewarned.

Spoiler gives Midnighter a sober look, taking a slow breath, her gaze moving to Vorpal, "He is my dad." The words are flat, and she moves on, speaking more easily, "There are six of them, all armed, all crazy. They can all fight, they're his gang…" She sits then, reaching for the seat, her movements a little stiff, "My mother is there, she is drugged. They didn't do that, she is an addict." More flatness, her life opened to the light in front of these two.

Vorpal breathes, and then exhales. He nods slowly and says, "Your secret is safe with me, Spoiler." Note to self: Get to her mother and get her out when Midnighter comes in. While he won't move a finger to spare the Cluemaster and his thugs… well.

The daughter of the cluemaster. A mother like that. The girl had more guts and will than he originally thought. He looks at Midnighter and nods at him. Ready when you are.

When Spoiler tells her secret, Midnighter loses his amusement. "Ah." He can see why she's upset; it goes back to that young and inexperienced thing. "You can go in and get your mother while Vorpal and I deal with the rest. Or did you want to kill him yourself? Vorpal can keep your mother safe and I'll see to it that you have the opportunity."

She is tense, watching their reactions closely, a hesitation before she shakes her head, "She'll defend him, you don't get it. She is under his thumb entirely." She nods at Midnighter, "I want to kill him." Mostly, anyhow, and the anger at her father is obvious, as she straightens, reaching for her belt, for the homemade grapple, preparing to take them to the house. "Vorpal, you get her, I want him." The hatred for him is obvious and she shoots them both a grin, the fierce relief at their response showing.

"She is as good as safe. She can struggle all she can, but no-one, anywhere, can escape falling through a rabbit hole." Vorpal reaches over and squeezes her shoulder gently. "I'm ready."

Midnighter gives Spoiler an approving nod. He knows all about wanting to kill fathers. Not that Bendix was his father but it's close enough. Creator. "Good for you. Let's do this then. Direct Vorpal and he'll open his portals for us."

Spoiler gives Midnighter a faint smile, before giving the address to Vorpal, her hand lifting to brush his, "They're armed, and willing to kill." The soft warning explains her injury nicely, and she gives Vorpal the nod, tensing ready to go through.

"That's ok. So is Midnighter." Vorpal says. Did he just stole Midnighter's thunder before he could say it? Maybe. But that's cats for you. He opens the Rabbit hole—- it's line-of-sight only, but he knows where the address is. And with the help of platforms, they do not have to go throught he Rollercoaster Vomit Express that Green Arrow experienced. He drops them off a little before the address, though, to be inconspicuous and to have a moment to recoup and begin the assault.

Midnighter doesn't feel a need to boast. He waits impassively as Vorpal provides transportation. When they do arrive, he finds out which is the correct house and then slips off. "Wait here while I scout."

Spoiler is quiet and tense, standing on his platform with her arms crossed over her chest, trying to ignore the nagging pain in her side, the dressing beneath her outfit pulling on her skin.

The house is lit up, the sounds of a gambling evening carrying on the air, and her eyes harden. In the kitchen, a haggard looking woman is shaking a pot of tablets into her hand, swallowing two with the ease of someone who has taken so many they no longer need water to swallow the bitterness down. In the front room, six people are sitting around a table, playing cards, the weapons close at hand and obvious. The Cluemaster is there, his ridiculous outfit marking him out, his goggles spelling the word clue on his forehead. Others there vary, a woman in a tight outfit, a huge man hunched over his cards, mouthing out their names, doomed to lose any money at this game. Three other men, seemingly a little less heavyweight but equally armed…

"Spoiler… you need to think of one thing only, before you go through with this." Vorpal says, putting a hand on her shoulder.
"If he is killed here, people are going to wonder where you were, being his daughter. You might end up in jail. It's your choice… but perhaps it is better to bring him in?" The Cheshire is trying to be the angel on Spoiler's shoulder. After all, Batman doesn't condone killing. He doesn't condone killing, but he did not have the power or training to stop the Spoiler if Midnighter was also on the side of killing. "Think… of him." The inflection in his voice is plain and clear, "Tonight, you can put an end to your old life in the right way, and you can have a new life where you two…" a pause. "I will get your mother out of here, whatever you choose to do. But I won't be able to protect you… especially not from Batman."

Because a friend is more than just someone who goes along with things. They're the ones who try to pull you away from the abyss until you bite their hands. And… well, there was the implication right there: However she chose to deal with this would impact the Batman's opinion on her. And his willingness or unwillingness to trust her.

Midnighter studies the men from his place in the shadows. Six of them but also the mother. Can't write her off. The scenarios play out in his mind, thousands in a mere second till he decides on the one he wants. There will be minor modifications once the fighting starts and the others join in but victory is a given. Of course. He can hear Vorpal but doesn't interfere; it's the girl's decision whether she wants to kill her father or not and he's there to do the job if she backs out of it. He returns to the others and nods once. "I'm ready. If you'd prefer to leave it all to me, that'll be fine. I can wound you so it'll look as if you put up a fight against me if you'd prefer that." Yes, he heard.

Stephanie turns her head, looking at Vorpal, her blue eyes hard for a moment before she sighs, lifting a hand to rub her face, the mask shifting under it. "Batman hates me." The words are quiet, the burn from the other night still sore, but her shoulders slump and she speaks slowly, "We take them in then. We're better than them, right? Justice, the American way and apple pie, and all that shit." She gives Vorpal a faint smile, turning to Midnighter, her shoulders pulling back, "We take them in. They go to prison, and I want him to know it was me that put him there."

Vorpal would grin, but that'd be cheeky. Instead, he gives Spoiler a gentle smile.

"I'll go get your mother. Give me to the count of sixty. I'll go invisible, grab her through a rabbit hole and take her to a rehab facility in Metropolis. I figure that's far enough." The Cheshire looks at Midnighter and Spoiler, and then leans in to give Spoiler a hug, totally unasked for- but light, because she's still wounded. "Batman may hate you, girl, but it's not him you want to be with. Go kick some ass and take down names. I'm proud of ya," he whispers to her and then vanishes into thin air.

"And begin count … now."

And that's the last they hear of him. Right around the fifty-nine mark, however, they will hear a woman screaming outside of the house. And the screams grow distant, very very quickly.

Cheshire abduction: Complete. Now it was up to the Dynamic Duo.

"So just so we're clear, you don't want me to kill them." Midnighter's not really happy about that and it shows. "You want to leave them alive and put them in prison where they'll undoubtedly escape and end up killing more innocent people in the future. Which will be on your consience." Given her dumb decision, he assumes she has one of those. "All in the name of 'all that shit'." Interfering cat. Shoo.

What are you going to do if you find out who she is? Tell her who you are? Stalk her? The words continue to roll over Tim's thoughts. But sometimes information is too important. Sometimes what you know matters.

Stephanie Brown. He clued into the name thanks to a certain angel in his own head. "I owe you one," he whispers into the link in his ear. "Don't tell Batman… " there's a long pause, "…or Nightwing… please." There's a pause and he mumbles something else, "Actually do what you gotta do. Just. Thanks… I'll be fine."

The Robin, slides from one house to the next. And, his shadow can be seen by those just across the street when he jumps from the home next door to the roof of the address he'd found. He stops there. Waiting and listening. On the roof of what he's deduced is the Cluemaster's house.

The card players are alerted, rising to their feet as the woman screams and then charging for the kitchen where her pills lie on the floor, scattered as she was snatched.

Along the street, Steph faces the Midnighter, her eyes hardening, "I won't let him make me the same as him, don't you see? If they escape, I'll take them back again, every time. I'm not doing this for someone else, I'm doing it for me." And then, instead of waiting on him, her homemade grapple is hurled towards the roof of her home, her jump a leap of faith that the stitches and dressings will hold as she swings for the front window, her aubergine cape flaring behind her.

It was too much to ask for to expect her to be sensible. "It's the intent that makes the difference." Midnighter points out as the walks toward the house. But they never seem to understand that till their idealism gets run over by reality. And by then, they've brainwashed themselves. He just kicks the door in without pause and with a running leap, kicks the large, stupid one in the back of his head right below the skull where the spine disappears.

"I just need a pla—" The noise in the house below has Robin rolling his eyes. "Or. I can improvise." He leaps down from the house, his cape catching the wind to help him parachute down. He sprints towards the now-broken window and tugs at the pocket on his utility belt. The flash pellet in his grasp is tossed into the now broken window, his own gaze turning away as he does so.

Spoiler lands, rolling to regain her balance, the movement that instant slower than before, and she comes up next to her father, giving him an instant to respond, an instant too short before her booted foot is flying for his face, the swirling cape aiding her balance, the fury of all of her pain behind the punch that follows.

The larger they are, the harder they fall, and the large, stupid one falls like a tree. The others are there though, armed and willing to kill, the woman throwing punches at the Midnighter, the men drawing weapons. The brilliant light from the pellet blinds them, and Spoiler herself, the gasp as she stumbles into a piece of furniture audible.

Left, right, duck, forward. Midnighter ends up between the woman and the men with guns. Leap. Two bullets hit the woman, neither fatally. "This is normally where I give you the speech about how I've run through every scenario of this fight and chosen the one I want so you might as well just give up now before you all end up on the floor requiring hospitalization." Normally it would be a coffin but Spoiler wimped out.

With the flash gone and Robin still possessing his own faculties, he leaps through the window… And sees the mayhem he's at least partially caused, his eyes lingering on the Spoiler for a moment. There's a tug in his chest that makes him hesitate, and long to just take her away from this place. But he doesn't give in.

He refocuses. His teeth toy at his bottom lip and he grasps the staff on his belt, extending it to its full length with a quick flick of his wrist. His eyes turn to those that were aiming to draw their weapons, and his staff exacts justice against their wrists and then midsections. Robin says nothing as he works, just spinning the staff and taking what knocks he can to minimize the damage to the house, the assailants, and the heroes who've entered the space.

Spoiler spins, picking herself up, the fury of the movement obvious as she kicks the Cluemaster's gun from his hands, following the movement with a punch, leaving the others to Midnighter, a snort at his words inelegant. The man's body language is so like hers, the family resemblance showing in that moment of confrontation, "You should have taken my offer, Steph, we could have done so much together." The words have a touch of regret to them, and she shakes her head, declining his premise, before she rolls, her hand reaching for his ankles, rolling with him, over him, a flip of her body landing him on the floor, face down with her on his back. The patch on her side is bleeding again, the blood darkening her outfit as she straddles his back, tying him up. "No."

They never listen. None of them ever do. Midnighter should stop wasting his time or just print it up on business cards and hand them out before the fight starts. And another young hero shows up. A friend of the girl's no doubt. "Target the joints not the body." he instructs and kicks a knee, breaking it and causing the man to cry out in agony. He promised he wouldn't kill them, nothing more. Actually, he didn't promise that either. "They're much more vulnerable than the torso. Go help Spoiler. I've got these."

It's not Robin's first rodeo which could be why Midnighter is summarily ignored for the time being. "Solar plexus isn't a bad spot," he mutters as he finishes up with the two thugs he's effectively disarmed. The notion of helping the Spoiler has his eyebrows ticking back towards Steph. With something that faintly resembles a sigh, he pushes the staff to the ground and uses it to vault forward, back towards the purple-caped woman. There's no smile, just a pair of eyes behind the mask staring at the darkening spot on her outfit.

Steph - no, Spoiler lifts her head, giving Robin a look, a hard look, before she reaches out and grabs the back of her father's mask, yanking it off and then thunk - his head meets the floor, his daughter's reply to his words. She glances at the Midnighter, a faint curve to her lips as she sees his victims still live, despite the pain. The sound of sirens on the air sound the notice of Calvary on their way, and her gaze lifts to Robin. "What?" The word is flat and she climbs off her father's back, reaching for a side board for balance.

A kick sends the gun skidding across the floor away from the one Midnighter just crippled. He turns toward the two now unarmed ones and smiles. It's a smile full of promise and it's an expression the criminals know very well; they've turned it on their victims often enough. Without being asked, they raise their hands in surrender. Silly them. Their heads crash together hard enough to render them both bleeding and unconscious. Payback is a bitch.

The stare lasts a few beats beyond the word. And Robin lingers a moment longer than he probably should. If she could really see his eyes, she might catch the indecisiveness that lingers there. But the mask protects against others views. His weight shifts, one foot to the other, and his cape cuts the air behind him with a snap and a flourish. He spins back to the window. His hand reaches to his belt, and he grasps the grapple hook. He hesitates again, begging questions as to how long it takes to fire the grappling gun. Not forever, it would seem.

The clink to the roof across the way followed by another press of a button has Robin disappearing from the house into the night.

Spoiler returns that look, her expression hidden, the masks concealing them from each other. Then he is going… going… gone, and she spins away, frustrating in her body language, in the lines of tension and in the kick she applies to the nearest of Midnighter's victims. "We have to go." The words are quiet and she reaches for some things, shoving them into a bag, her movements pained. The groan from her father, Cluemaster, earns him a look but no response, and the sirens come closer.

Three unconscious. One crippled. One shot and bleeding. None able to continue to be a threat. Midnighter walks into the kitchen as the bat scion leaves. "Friend of yours?" he asks, echoing the question she asked of Vorpal. Reaching down, he drags Cluemaster to his feet and shoves him back against a wall. "Your daughter." he says leaning in so that they're eye to eye and his hands are on Cluemaster's shoulders. "Don't ever go near her again. If she doesn't kill you next time, I will." He YANKS and dislocates both arms then steps back and lets him fall. "I'm done here." he agrees, in a somewhat better mood than before the fight.

"Robin. It's complicated." The reply is quiet and she watches his actions with her father without a word, without a gesture to show feeling and she nods, "Time to go." She turns towards the backdoor, heading out to the small yard, her home made grappler used to leave it, to arrive on a fire escape with a thud. She glances over her shoulder, looking down at the house, before she settles there to watch. The police arrive, the swarm of uniforms removing the scum from her home.

Midnighter has no grapplers. Handy things though. Maybe he should get one. Instead, he runs and leaps, grabbing the fire escape before climbing up the outside of it in seconds. "You're going to have a hell of a time getting the blood out of the rug." he comments. His version of small talk. "Believe me, I know how badly it stains." He goes through more leather costumes.

She watches Midnighter climb, watches the police clear the criminals from her home, and watches it turn into a crime scene. She glances at him when he speaks and she snorts then, turning into a laugh, "I might redecorate…" The reply is quiet and she reaches down, touching her side, "I think I broke the stitches…" The rueful comment comes with a shake of her head, and she adds quietly, "Thank you. For doing this, for not killing him. I want him to know I put him there…"

"You might live to regret your decision." Midnighter answers. "If you do, don't let sentiment get in the way next time. Take him down fast and hard before he can hurt more people. It's not the same as what they do. It's waste disposal, nothing more, and leaves the world a better, safer place." Reaching into a pocket, he pulls out a small pouch. "Take your shirt off and I'll stitch you up."

"Maybe." The reply is quiet and she unhooks her cape, letting it drop down, before she unbuttons the top, pulling a face at striping off. Beneath the costume, she is a young woman, athletic, with a plain vest that gets lifted to show the dressing and the stitches busted open. Her teeth catch her lower lip and she looks away, her gaze focussing on the home they just reclaimed. "I'll have to go down there and be Steph."

Inside the pouch are some pre-threaded surgical needles in individual packets. Midnighter tears one open and gets to work. He doesn't bother saying 'this is going to hurt.' Of course it is and she's not stupid enough to think otherwise. And it hurts exactly like being repeatedly stabbed with a needle hurts. "Go to a bar first and have a few drinks. Give them an explanation for where you were. Use cash so there's no record of when you bought them on a credit card if they decide to check.

The whimper is very real, and her hands clench, the girl holding still under the ministrations. She nods, trying to focus on that, the mask hiding her expression, hiding tears. "Glad I grabbed clothes." The words are forced out through clenched teeth, her gaze tracking the police as they put crime scene strips around her home, and she finally looks away, looking at him. " Thanks." The word is brief and she shakes her head, glancing away once more.

Midnighter just nods in response and pulls a knife from his boot to cut the suture once he's done. The pouch goes back into his jacket and he drops the needle by Spoiler. "Dispose of that later." He looks over the police activity before glancing at Spoiler. "You did well back there."

She takes the needle, turning it over in her fingers before she raises her gaze to him. "Thanks. Again." Her lips curve, the mask moving slightly. "Time to get drunk…" She rolls the cape up, shoving it into a bag, her top swapped for a t-shirt with no blood on it, and she hesitates before shucking off her pants, swapping them for hastily grabbed jeans. The rest goes into a bag, and she hugs it, "I should get rid of this. Hide it or something… "

Midnighter holds out a hand for the bag. "I'll drop it down an incinerator chute blocks from here. Or did you want to try to salvage them?"

Spoiler hesitates, before she reaches up, grabbing her mask and shoving it in the bag. She hands it over. "I don't know, I think… I need to think about it all." Her hair falls down, the band tugged from her hair, and she looks like any other cute blonde teenager, Stephanie revealed. "Thanks." She turns to go, heading for the fire escape.

Midnighter watches her walk toward the fire escape then says "Hey." When she turns, he tosses her the bag. "Bus station locker. Till you decide." Giving her a nod, he turns and walks in the opposite direction, automatically slipping into the shadows.

She catches the bag, and shoots him a grin, lopsided and rueful, before she heads off to stick it in a locker, and then gets thoroughly drunk in a bar. Then home, and police.

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