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Warehouses and Gasoline - JLA Watchtower RPG
Warehouses and Gasoline
The so-called 'Suicide Slum' district of Metropolis doesn't really fit in with the rest of the city. The gleaming skyscrapers and clean streets give way to a grimier existence that resembles Gotham City more than it does Metropolis.

Funny how that doesn't make the Batman feel any more at home.

The Batmobile is parked nearby, it's stealth systems activated to avoid drawing any spectators as he sifts through the burnt-out husk of a bay-side warehouse. Until its fiery demise a few months ago, it had been owned by a shell company, owned by another shell company, owned by a third shell company - but years before that, when it had been built, its owners were a little less careful about the companies hired to do the construction. Companies with ties to the once-powerful crime syndicate called 'the 100.'

Those companies were gone, now, too. Toppled in one investigation or another over the years. The 100 was believed to be defunct as well, so the fire at this warehouse hadn't raised any red flags to the Metropolis Police.

He'd followed colder trails.

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superman_kal_el From: superman_kal_el Date: September 29th, 2011 07:22 pm (UTC) (Link)
"The rumors of my death and all of that?" Superman drifts down and hovers there, just a few yards from his old friend, "Welcome to the walking dead. What brings you to our fare city tonight?"
gotham_gargoyle From: gotham_gargoyle Date: September 30th, 2011 04:13 pm (UTC) (Link)
"What can I say? I got better."

He stands from his crouched position, not even looking up, yet.

"It's nice to see you too, Clark."
superman_kal_el From: superman_kal_el Date: September 30th, 2011 08:37 pm (UTC) (Link)
"You just made a funny...you really did get better." He smiles and his feet touch the ground so he is standing near the Dark Knight, "It's good to have you back in the saddle. Don't get me wrong. Your protoge did a fine job...but I'm sure he'd be the first to say he's just not...well...you."

He then looks to the same spot Bruce is scanning without really taking note of anything specific, "So. Not a social visit, then?" Of course...when is it ever a social visit.
gotham_gargoyle From: gotham_gargoyle Date: October 3rd, 2011 06:36 pm (UTC) (Link)
He nods, once.

"A new syndicate setting up shop in Gotham. May have some ties to an old syndicate from Metropolis. They've been good at keeping most of their friends quiet, so far."

The Batman takes a scraping from the underside of one of the fallen beams of the warehouse.

"And if I seem a little lighter - let's just say that spending months trapped inside the mind of a paranoid megalomaniac has given me a renewed appreciation for people I can count on."
superman_kal_el From: superman_kal_el Date: October 3rd, 2011 06:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
"I'd be lying if I told you I knew the details...but I know enough to know that I don't envy you your experience. He's a sick and twisted man...and in a different way than your used to. The others you deal with generally wear their sickness on their sleeve. For Lex, it's all inside..." His face is sullen and serious but warm and concerned as well, "...where you were, right?"

He looks Bruce in the eye, "You've never told anyone exactly what you faced in there have you? No one really knows do they?"

Then he smiles the smile of someone recognizing a friend, "Of course not. So, tell me. How can I help? If they're here in Metropolis, I want to know what's going on and stop this before it gets out of hand and folks get hurt."

Edited at 2011-10-04 04:32 pm (UTC)
gotham_gargoyle From: gotham_gargoyle Date: October 4th, 2011 11:59 pm (UTC) (Link)
"Don't you usually only come in at the end of these cases, where there's more fighting and dramatic speeches?"

Another time, that might've sounded like a pointed barb. Here, it's more akin to teasing.

"I'm guessing you remember the One Hundred. I seem to recall you writing a few pieces on them before Intergang stole the show."
superman_kal_el From: superman_kal_el Date: October 10th, 2011 07:13 pm (UTC) (Link)
"Of course I remember them...and hasn't Jefferson had the occaisional run-in with them in the past?" Batman's obvious implication is not lost on the Kryptonian, "You think they're back...enough to pose a threat."

Superman begins scanning the area around which Batman has centered his attention. He starts at the barely macroscopic level, since fingerprints and other evidence tends to be found there.
gotham_gargoyle From: gotham_gargoyle Date: October 10th, 2011 07:17 pm (UTC) (Link)
He starts to correct his friend, but nods at the qualifier.

"They've never really been gone, but this level of activity would be new. The last thing Gotham needs after the Darkseid incident is a major new player in organized crime."

Batman doesn't even look over, yet he still seems to know just what Superman is doing.

"I've found trace evidence of an accelerant. You can probably give me the formula faster than my computers, especially considering how much time has passed. Once I have the formula, I can start making my way through Metropolis's arsonist community until I find the matching M.O."
superman_kal_el From: superman_kal_el Date: October 10th, 2011 07:25 pm (UTC) (Link)
Clark narrows his focus, scanning through the various molecular structures on and around the area Batman is examing, "Yeah. I'm seeing something I don't recognize in the usual mixture of air around here. Something that's most concentrated..." He pauses for a moment, scanning, "There."

He points to a location about a foot and a half to the left of where Batman is focusing.
gotham_gargoyle From: gotham_gargoyle Date: October 12th, 2011 11:02 pm (UTC) (Link)
"Used to be the base of a supporting beam. Probably the epicenter of the fire."

He leans over the area, producing a small kit to take a sample.

"How's Lois?"
superman_kal_el From: superman_kal_el Date: October 12th, 2011 11:53 pm (UTC) (Link)
He's still scanning the rubble, now also using x-ray vision. With any luck, more helpful clues might be found buried underneath one of these layers, "Lois? Lois is great! She's in Qurac right now putting the finishing touches on her human traficking story. It's powerful stuff and she's real proud of it."

He stops what he's doing and walks over to the crouched Dark Knight, "and don't think I didn't just notice the small talk, Bruce. You can just ask me whatever it is you're wanting to ask me. It's not exactly like you to beat around the bush."

Edited at 2011-10-12 11:54 pm (UTC)
gotham_gargoyle From: gotham_gargoyle Date: October 14th, 2011 10:56 pm (UTC) (Link)
"Hh. You've gotten paranoid since I died."

He tucks the sample away in his utility belt.

"I know I'm not known for small talk, Clark, but that doesn't mean I can't ask a friend how his wife is."

The Batman stands again, and opens a small data entry system on his glove.

"You've got the formula?"
superman_kal_el From: superman_kal_el Date: October 17th, 2011 06:08 pm (UTC) (Link)
Clark shrugs, then gives Bruce a sly but friendly look before replying, "Well. I'm here if you ever need to chat. I'm not looking to have you cry on my shoulder, Bruce, but I can tell you...coming back from the dead is frought with it's very own special trials and tribulations. Granted, you have the advantage of not having died on national television with the love of your life and your whole city watching...but I'm guessing you've got your very own special set of related issues."

His expression changes as Clark switches to a more professional demeanor, "and yes, I've got the formula...at least, I can describe what I'm seeing."

He then turns contemplative as he proceeds to list off the various chemical components and the atomic latic he's viewing. Once he's finished, he turns to Bruce, "What is that? The components sound vaguely familiar but I'd be lying if I told you I recognized it off the top of my head. Professor Stein I am not."
gotham_gargoyle From: gotham_gargoyle Date: October 17th, 2011 06:36 pm (UTC) (Link)
"Right now, it's not much of anything. But given the amounts and the specific remnants you picked up, and accounting for evaporation and decay from exposure, it used to be a particularly flammable mix of gasoline, oil, and household cleaners. Definitely some firebug's favorite formula."

He lifts his head from the computer interface in his glove, to look at Superman.

"That means I can find out who burned down this warehouse, and then lean on them until they give me another, more important name."
superman_kal_el From: superman_kal_el Date: October 25th, 2011 06:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
"Now that sounds like the Batman I'm used to working with. This is where I tell you that I trust the Metropolis police to handle local criminal investigation...unless you have some specific reason I shouldn't. You know how uncomfortable it makes me to have you acting as law enforcement when we have a whole bunch of talented men and women who are just waiting to help."

He gives Bruce a warm, but expectant, smile.
gotham_gargoyle From: gotham_gargoyle Date: October 26th, 2011 05:12 pm (UTC) (Link)
"This syndicate has fingers everywhere, Clark. And I don't just mean dirty cops taking bribes to line their pockets - I mean good men who don't see anything wrong with letting a little information slip to an old friend, or men who fear for their family's safety if they don't do what they're told. You may not wear a mask, but you know that our anonymity provides us with a powerful protection from those kinds of influence."

"The system is a good thing. But if it's the only game in town, the criminals adapt to it. The One Hundred were in Metropolis for years - do you really think they don't still have a few cops they can call?"
superman_kal_el From: superman_kal_el Date: October 26th, 2011 07:03 pm (UTC) (Link)
He clenches his teeth a little as he listens to Bruce. He's right, of course, but that doesn't mean he has to be happy about it. The smile turns to a frown and he gives Bruce a bit of a glare, "Continue your investigation, then...but under no circumstances should the locals know the Batman has come calling. Metropolis police and I have something of an understanding and this, quite honestly, bends the boundaries of my agreement with them"
gotham_gargoyle From: gotham_gargoyle Date: October 27th, 2011 05:24 pm (UTC) (Link)
"You should know better than to make promises on my behalf. They don't have any agreement with me."

He turns, walking towards the concealed Batmobile.
superman_kal_el From: superman_kal_el Date: October 27th, 2011 06:26 pm (UTC) (Link)
He may not see it, but this puts a fairly large grin on Clark's face. He lifts off the ground but stops before taking off, "Alright. Just be careful and..."

It is about then that he realizes Batman is nowhere to be seen. Yes. It is definitely good to have him back.
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