2019-06-02 - About last night ...


Allison and Barbara meet again at the Empire Diner in Queens to discuss what happened the other night

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Sun Jun 2 00:00:00 2019
Location: Empire Diner

Related Logs


Theme Song



It's a rainy night.

Allison called. It was a couple of days after the fateful night at Mario's, when she and Barbara first met. Radio silence after, but the blonde did promise to take the redhead out again. She seemed sort of sullen and withdrawn after the car crash. It doesn't take the World's Greatest Detective to figure out that the blonde wasn't exactly comfortable about becoming a sliver of the sun for a brief moment.

Well, not quite that hot.

She's wet from the rain, dressed in denim jeans and a simple white t-shirt. She probably came from work, judging from how she looks a little done-up in the face and somewhat relieved to be out of whatever outfit she has to wear when serving and/or cooking. Blue eyes survey the diner for Barbara, and soon find her. Allison's sneakers squeak as she approaches, which is forgiveable for the fact that she isn't a Bat-member.

"Sorry that I'm a bit late," apologizes the Brit when she's close.

Barbara Gordon sits at a booth near the back. No laptop out this time. Just a glass of icewater and a bespectacled redhead. She smiles. "Don't apologize for working, Allison. You're not really late. And getting around NYC at any time is pretty much a guarantee of running behind." She waves her hand casually; not bothered in the least. She stands up, though, to offer a hug if Allison might want one.

"Hopefully work was okay, regardless?"

The hug is …

… welcome. Allison takes the moment to hug. She doesn't really have a hugger's look to her: she looks like a bedraggled, scraggly feline with her somewhat wet hair and skinny frame. But she hugs, and she seems to melt into it ironically. A satisfied sigh follows. "It was okay, actually. Not too busy or chaotic. Good tips." These are good things for waitresses. "And the head cook wasn't a complete skeeve and or want to make me chunder." Snort. "So, okay."

She lets go, smiles a little, and then disengages.

"What, you're here without your computer tonight?" She slides into the bench opposite of where Barbara was. "That's flattering, I'd like to think." Not that she seems preturbed by that. "Were you waiting long, then? I hope not. But you seem the type that'd be early for any appointment." Compliment, compliment. Maybe too much so, as if she were trying to evade something.

Hard to say what.

Barbara Gordon hugs warmly and then steps back. A light laugh. "I'm going to use my powerful deductive reasoning skills and say you're from the UK originally? Your colloquialisms are, largely, from the other side of The Pond…" she teases as she settles into the booth again. Another laugh. "oh I've got it. I came from work myself. But this wasn't a working event. I'm a nerd and I love my computers. But they don't rule my life!" she declares triumphantly.

"Not long. Just long enough to sip half a glass of icewater, honestly." She gestures at said half full glass of water. "It's good to see you again. Thank you, really. For helping the other night." She doesn't even go 'there'. "And for catching up with me again. I'm sure it will be a total surprise to you but I don't have a lot of friends. I know, I know. Chatty librarian and all.." She winks. "Shh. it'll be our secret."

Allison just listens.

"Surprised? A little. You at least seem to be chatty." Beat. "Me? Not so much, I guess. I — " Shrug. " — I mean, outside of work, I don't really do much, truth be told. Not that I'm not the dog's body and lay about all the time, but — " Another shrug. " — since coming here, I suppose I've just felt a little lost about, you know what I mean?"

"Not that I'm entirely sure where I'm from, anyhow."

That is probably another story. "So, I've been told, yes, that I'm from the UK. But — " She pauses. " — not really sure if I can say I'm from there, yeah? I know I sound like I am, but — " She leans forward and taps the side of her head lightly. " — don't really remember much of it, actually. It comes to me more and more, but — " She grimaces. " — it's slow."

"See, I had my mind boggled harsh — wiped."

Barbara Gordon grins. "I'm no INFJ introvert.. but I'm more introverted than not. A good book. A computer to build or program and I'm very happy on my own. But I love to do things, or just hang out with friends."

To the observant, her right hand around the knuckles appears to be rather bruised. Like maybe one of those many delicate bones has been fractured given the coloration. But she doesn't favor the hand really.

A frown and a nod. "That would certainly do it. I'm sorry to hear that.. but it's good you're remembering things, even if slowly." She has so many more questions. But she's biting her tongue. Hard.

Allison's tired, but she's not too tired to notice things.

"You want to ask me about something?" Her smile appears again, and briefly is a grin. "It's okay if you ask. I'm trying to get more comfortable with the way things are for me, Barbara. I — " Shrug. " — I can't hide from the past or the truth, yeah? Tired of having to dish out pork pies all the time to keep me from thinking about it."

Whatever that means.

Barbara Gordon smiles. "I just want to be a friend Allison. You seem very sweet and very intelligent. And I already love your accent and way of speaking." She sips her water again, "I don't need to ask or know anything more than I do about private things. We all have our own struggles and burdens, you know? If a time comes and you're ready, you can tell me. But I'm not going to let anyone, myself included, define you by anything other than the character and personality you share with others. That is what matters most to me." She smiles and offers her hand in reassurance. "I promise."

Allison doesn't know how to take that reassurance, at first.

She licks her lower lip quickly, and then slowly reaches out to touch her fingertips against Barbara's palm. "It's, um — " Her other hand runs through her wispy blonde hair. " — kind of you to say that." Shrug. "But, how do you know what you should and shouldn't tell someone? Like — how should I know that what I'm going to say isn't going to make — you know — " Beat. " — isn't going to just make you think I'm a freak or weird, hmm?" She cocks an apologetic half-smile.

"It's easier to not say anything at all."

She clears her throat. "Most of the time, I think people'd find me quite mad." Beat. "Or evil or wicked or something. Don't Christians fear the fires of Hell?" Scoff. "It's — I suppose I'm over-reacting because I know there are mutants out there, and people who are different, but — " Another beat. " — I guess — it's not bad to just want to be normal, yeah? To not be constantly reminded of how different you are?"

She presses the palm of her one hand down gently on Barbara's.

Barbara Gordon smiles reassuringly, letting Allison talk. "Allison. If I was going to think those things of you - any of them - I'd have come to those misguided conclusions the other night. But you risked yourself in front of everyone there to save that kitten. You'd have done it for a child or an adult. I firmly believe that. And that? That tells me something. It tells me that you are many things Allison. But what you are /not/ is evil, crazy or any sort of creature from whatever hell someone believes in. If you were, you'd have never helped." She smiles. "And I sincerely doubt there is anything you would do willingly, that would change my mind about any of this." She squeezes that hand lightly. "Feeling normal is important. It's a sense of belonging. Fitting in. I get it. I always wished I had black hair. Brown. Blonde. Anything but red when I was little. I got teased about my hair. My freckles. My glasses. My memory - I was the school's "know-it-all" from the first day of kindergarden all the way through graduating top of my class and valedictorian. I can't change my looks. Or that I was born with a mind that, according to my doctors, cannot forget anything. Eidetic memory. It's just.. who I am." She looks to the blonde with a smile. "These things are trivial in comparison and I'd never try to compare. Just know that everyone has things that others see as abnormal. But honestly? I think your… talent? What little I could see of it? I think it's absolutely amazing. But I understand why you'd keep it hidden as much as you can, too."

As Barbara talks, Allison's eyes wander to the table.

"I guess it just reminds me of the past," she admits finally. "I still remember it." She laughs half-heartedly. "I mean, you'll think this silly, but — " Sigh. " — I was the daughter of the first Senator of a place called Nova Roma. Heard of it?" She explains, of course. "It was this little country in the Amazon Rainforest in South America. We all believed that we were descended from Roman colonists that had spanned the Atlantic." Beat. "Truth be told, we were all brainwashed to believe that. We had been kidnapped by some mad sorceress that got her rocks off of being an Empress."

She doesn't sound bitter about that.

"And when the outside world found us and knocked the witch off her throne, it — it was a mutant that kept the illusion in place." She presses her lips together firmly for a second. "He, um — " She starts to get a little anxious. " — well, he said he loved me, and I loved him, silly bint that I was." Another half-hearted laugh. "But he — he kept us like that. Brainwashed. Until his conscience, I guess, got the better of himself, or his mates decided to knock him in the head a little, make him see what he's doing."

She just shakes her head at that.


Barbara Gordon listens, trying to sort out what she is being told. It's kind of hard to digest after all. She frowns. "Wow.." she offers softly, "That's. well. I'm not sure what to call it, I guess. Nothing it probably hasn't already been called by you or others anyway." She looks over. "I'm sorry." She leaves her hand there if Allison wishes or needs to hold it for support. "Whatever it was, though, you're moving on with your life. That's probably the most important. Time doesn't stop for any of us."

"That's what I figured."

Allison looks out of the nearby window for a moment. "Anyhow, eventually, I — we — got rescued. The illusions wore off, but — " Shrug. " — I still remember the other life only. Not really much of who I am now. If that makes sense." Beat. "Somewhere in between all of that, I got tossed into a volcano. Hence — " The entire lava-goddess thing. " — here I am. Trying very desperately to be something — or someone — new."

And that's that, sort of.

"And what about you, Barbara? I know that you're working at the library, but most people see an accident, and — " Beat. " — you know, call help, but definitely not run into the vehicle to get someone out." Beat. "Especially librarians, I guess?" She smiles briefly. "Unless you're also a firefighter in disguise, eh?"

"She awaits the response.

Barbara Gordon says, "I can't imagine" which is very true; Given her eidetic memory she has found it next to impossible to forget much of anything. The idea of having large parts of her memory suddenly foggy or even blank is a completely foreign idea to the redhead.

"Maybe with time you'll be able to remember. But for now? You can always focus on what you want to be and set that as your goal. No one has to stay as any one thing their whole life."

A laugh, "Well, no. I'm not just a librarian, you're right. But not a firefighter. My dad. He's the police commissioner for Staten Island and has been on the force since before I was born. So.. you could safely say I've had all sorts of emergency training. All. The. Training." she jokingly emphasizes. "He's a great dad. I love him to pieces. Sometimes, though, he can be superbly over protective. So. Yeah. Honestly I was scared to death that gas tank was going to rupture before we even got the door open to help that man.""


That makes sense. It all makes sense. "Your father is the police commissioner." Allison looks over Barbara for a few moments. "And you work with the library. And — " Beat. " — training." She frowns for a moment. "Your father wanted you to walk in his foorsteps, then?" She looks at Barbara's hand for a moment. "But you elected to go the way of the book?"

Allison looks out of the window for a moment or two, maybe three.

"You know, I'm not sure if I want to remember." She looks back to Barbara. "Yes, what I remember wasn't positive. Isn't positive, I guess would be the right word." Beat. "But what if my life before was terrible, or — what if my life before is not a life that I would want to remember? I remember — " Beat. " — well, I'm British. The people that found me discovered that much. And my name: my real name, at least, but — " Shrug. " — that's it. That's it."

"And maybe that's not a bad thing?"

Barbara Gordon considers that. "You know? Dad never pushed me toward one thing or another. He just pushed me to be my best and to pursue what I enjoy. If you aren't passionate about it, it's just a job, y'know?" She brushes some strands of hair behind her right ear. "I loved computers and books. And helping people. So…. I went to CUNY - John Jay College and.." She shrugs. "I got degrees in Computer Forensics and Counter-terrorism, and then in Computer Security." She rolls her eyes and laughs at herself. "But neither of those were enough for me. So after finishing those degrees, i went to CUNY - Queens College and got my Master's in Library and Information Science"

She pauses, blishing a bit as she feels like she's bragging more than telling, which is really all she meant to do. Softly she adds on, "So.. I've helped out the Staten Island PD get their stations updated and secured for the 21st century including digitizing all their old paper documents and records so they can be properly archived and backed up. And… then I kind of do a lot of the same for the Libraries. Though I do get to work at the information desk sometimes. I love being able to help someone find the information or books they're looking for."

Barbara Gordon then nods. "whatever you remember, it's still a part of you, Allison. Don't fear your past. It can't define you anymore unless you choose to let it.."

There's a pause.

Allison is listening. Rather intently, actually. Absorbing, some might say. Words and words. Information. "You help people find out things, Barbara. And there's — " Sigh. " — there's a certain value to that." She bobs her head. "And if it is what you really feel called to do? I'm jealous." The blonde smiles widely for a moment. "That you've found your calling. That you know waht to do."

There's a pause.

"You know, it — " She shakes her head. " — I don't know, Barbara, I just feel that, with the way things are — the way they, um — " Sigh. " — the way things are. About — you know, about being a mutant." She looks sad for a moment. "It seems that we all just fit in one of the stereotypes. You know, hero or villain."

"Do you think that's inevitable?"

Barbara Gordon shrugs, "There are so -so- many days, Allison, where I have no. clue. and I'm just making it up as I go. But over all it is what I love. Helping people." She smiles. "You're what you want to be defined by. Others can define us to fit their narrow minded perspectives. But they only have power over us if we let them." She smiles. "You'll find your passion, Allison. I have no doubt. As for inevitability? If you ascribe a religion, maybe? Many have beliefs in preordained purposes. I like to believe I create my own. but again. it's perspective." She sits back. "Allison.. I've.. heard of some people that might be able to help someone with .. talents.. as amazing as yours. I don't have any information and I won't look into it without your permission. But if you'd let me, I'd like to try and help you. Life is too short to be alone."


Allison winces visibly, but seems to shrug off the last comment with a short, sad little laugh. "Is it that obvious?" Shrug. "But I have been thinking lately that maybe the reason I stick the a nine-to-five, and try to avoid places where I might encounter problems is — well — because I don't want to know what I would do if something were to happen in front of me." Beat. "And it is not as if what I am is particular safe to be around either."

Which is, of course, a living being of lava.

"But maybe you're right: about finding others, about seeing if someone could — I don't know — help?" She seems uncertain. "If I need help. Maybe someone just to talk to about choices. A counselor, maybe." Shrug. "I've, ah — " Sigh. " — suppose I should give some serious consideration to the possibility I'm not going to have what others might call a 'normal' life, yeah?"

"Not that the brainwashing didn't set me apart."

Barbara Gordon reaches her hand over again. "I didn't say it to hurt you Allison. You'll always have me as a friend. But if you're concerned - worried - whatever you prefer to call it - about your.. talent. Then I know there are those who say they help with improving those talents and getting a handle on them. Maybe I'm saying it wrong." She shrugs some. "I'm not afraid of you. I never will be. I trust you and your talents. I trust you'll never use them for the wrong reasons. Accidents happen. We're all human. But what defines us is what we do after a mistake. give up or get up and try again." She smiles. "I can look into things and give you the information. What you do with it will be up to you. I won't try to convince you either way. You have to be certain in your own mind."

"I'm not."

Allison looks at Barbara ruefully. "I know there are options, but I have my life as well." Beat. "I've someone looking into getting me a new job somewhere else, where I'll be in a kitchen making food — something I love doing. And maybe I can spend the rest of my days just trying to make an ordinary life of it, yeah? Not be caught up in all of the craziness that's going on in the city."


"But if — if you can find someone or some group, and you think they may be someone I could talk to about — you know — " Half-smile. " — I'd appreciate it, I would. Between work and everything else, I've just not had the time to seriously think about that other part of me. It — it's just been something I've been keeping locked down, you know? Hidden."

Not that those sort of stories ever end well.

Barbara Gordon smiles. "I'll see what I can find. But you're right. hiding things? It just ends up causing more stress and regret later on. Addressing things. Finding a way to handle or deal with them. that helps make life feel stable and not like a constant earthquake and after shock situation." She smiles wryly, " And that job? That sounds really great. I'd love to come and try the place that has good taste and sense to hire you." She winks. "I can't wait actually."

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License