2019-08-05 - Electrical System Failure


Harper gets called in for some OT and meets some unlikely people.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Mon Aug 5 00:49:08 2019
Location: Staten Island

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Theme Song




It has GOT to be an annoying day for Harper. Something is messing around with the electrical and telcom systems and it's flipping physical switches and jumpers as well as operating the on site computer systems. This is in or near one of the junction rooms found in the maintenance tunnels. There shouldn't be anyone down there. And there might not be. It might be rats or something. Well, the switches might be rats. The computers?

As it turns out there IS someone down there but the cameras just don't seem to be transmitting properly. Kian Allard Liao is dressed for once in normal clothes and has a flashlight in his mouth and one of the junction boxes open as he fiddles with the wires and occasionally stops to tap at the (slightly ancient) Municipal Computer not far from him.

It has GOT to be an annoying day for Ranna Pryde as well. Because for a change she's the one being hunted. Snakeroot Clan. Rival ninja. Ninja clans in general don't get along even when they're working toward the same goal and she'd got spotted. Now she has to hide a bit. Hide some place like, say… the maintenance tunnels?

"Harper Row, if you do not get your raggedy ass down into those tunnels, you're fired!"

And this was coming off of a morning shift and a night with no sleep. So it was back to the grind again, backpack on her back, tool box and belt handy, and a trudge through the subways to the aforementioned area. The reason why Harper was always called was because she loved the overtime, the health benefits, something you don't get as a vigilante. But also because of the tools that she creates. A little beacon, held up against the wall of the maintenance tunnels, catching where the electricity dies, sparks to life again, dies again, shorts out and flames bright.. it was odd.

"If there's some ghost shit down here, I swear to fucking god.."

Ranna has been keeping a low profile since Kian beat the living crap out of her. She's still sporting the bruises, her face now a mottled collection of yellows and greens. The shooting pain in her head hasn't abated either. That had started not long after Shiranui had roundkicked her in the head and knocked her through a wall.

The small dusky skinned woman had slipped into the maintenance tunnels sometime ago. The Snakeroot Clan had decided that she was fair game. Was that because The Order had withdrawn their sanction? She's not sure if either of those things are true - all she knows is that she doesn't want to have fight today.

She's coming through the opposite entry from Harper, not far from where Kian is working. As silently as possible, but it's hard to mask the sound of footfalls even down here.

Step. Step. Step. Yeah Harper can hear Ranna approaching if she listens and if she looks, well there's no hiding down here. There's no cover. There is however that big metal door and that seems to be the source of that problem. A junction room. Those things are dusty, musty and usually a bit damp. They're old. And because they're on the city budget they're not especially well taken care of.

BANG! "Ow! Sonofoa…"

Both Ranna AND Harper will hear that. It came from that door. And… is that door not all the way closed?

The little gauge that she held was immediately put into her pocket. The little quiet step, step, steps had her on guard. She moves to lean against the wall in the cover of.. nothing, hand sinking to the back of her pocket to retrieve her mask. However adheisive those things are, was plastered against her face to at least mask her eyes, much like most of the old family would do. At least Harper had the good goddamned sense to upgrade hers.

"Who's that?" She calls out in Ranna's direction, her whispers harsh. "You have no busi-…" And then the BANG!

Harper looks towards Ranna, keeping her hand held upright as she approaches the door with a crouch, her hand gripped upon the side to slowly draw it closed so that she could roll her body to the other side, putting her back to Ranna. Harper has done worse. And done even more worse by assuming that Ranna wouldn't do anything…

But pulling open the door to peer inside, Harper tries to get a good look at what was going on, at least before rushing in feet first.

Ranna tries to pull back into the shadows at Harpers whisper. Too late, she's been seen. She's normally so much better than this - Kian has a lot to answer for. "I'm … lost." she whispers back, watching the electricity as it arcs and sparks.

Harper will see the leather bracers she's wears, the top side covered by metal scales.


That was unexpected and at least she doesn't flinch. Her eyes narrow at the voice though. "Careful. He might be dangerous." She says as Harper pulls that door open. One set of scales on her braces flowing from them, forming a serrated edged chakram that she grips.

What she sees is someone in jeans and a hoodie with a flashlight in his mouth pulling something out of one of the junction boxes. "Gotcha. Okay. Now all I need to do is- uh. Oh…"

There's a handle sticking out over his shoulder that might be to… hard to say what actually. But there's something long on his back that might be a weapon. It isn't drawn though. He quickly pulls the hoddie low to obscure his features but not before both Harper and Ranna get a glimpse of asian features.

"You guys don't look like maintenance…"

Harper IS of course but she's got that mask on. And Ranna, well she looks normal.

Well normal except for the chakram in her hand.

Whatever the case clearly this guy was the source of her overtime, physically messing around with the junctions. Odd that he wasn't picked up by the cameras though.

Well, it wasn't hard to get lost in the tunnels. Often times, Harper needs a map to know where to go, and there still isn't much explored underneath New York. Blame the prohobition era for that one. And probably the Free Masons. Which is what Harper would have said if they both weren't peeking into the doorway of the room!

But still, Harper with that mask on puts herself in front of Ranna, unwisely not checking to see if the young woman is armed, but a person that needs protecting and a proper escort out of the underground maze. But.. they don't look like maintenance? "Do you not see this big -ASS- bag right here my dude?!" Harper sticks her hip out, then flops the bag. Nevermind the crap that she has in her bookbag, which looks bulky. "What the hell are you doing down here? Are you trying to get yourself killed?"

Annoyance all around, Harper marches into the room, stopping not too far away from the asian man, turning briefly to finally look towards Ranna and.. "Uh.." Was she going to shank her? "..listen guys. Ignore the fact that I'm wearing a mask right now, I -really- am a maintenance worker. This is just cosplay.." And a look back to Rian.. who.. has a weapon.. well..

This is how Bluebird dies.. at least the insurance payout will be great.

Ranna looks far from ordinary, the way the bruises colour the skin on her face. It's hard to make out her real features but yes, she's not that face mask that Kian has only ever seen her in.

"I know you …" Ranna mutters as she takes up position at Harpers back. The chakram held like she knows what she's doing. "Cosplay, huh? Sure, let's go with that. Better than 'ninjas are chasing me and I got lost'." Still grumbling. "Were you going to a party or something?" That's to Harper.

"And what do you think you're doing here?"

Ranna looks like she's gotten into the wrong kind of argument. Maybe that she comes from the wrong part of town. Maybe that she's in the wrong kind of relationship. Which she is, but not like that.

"Cosplaying." He repeats the word looking amused and as he straightens up, yes that is a sword he's wearing. He hasn't pulled it but WHO comes down here with a sword to mess with the wiring and what the hell was he doing?

"If it helps I'm probably not going to hurt myself. It doesn't help, though, does it?"

He looks past her to Ranna. Unlike Ranna - who has not seen Kian without his mask - He HAS seen her without one. Sort of. She was wearing a mud mask. And in bare feet. And HIGH on painkillers.

It wasn't her best moment, really.

"I'm juuuuuuuuuuust… um…" He looks behind him. How many good lies are there to get out of this?

"Just installing some taps…"

He can't think of a single good lie so… let's try the truth.

"I didn't think maintenance was supposed to be down here for another two and a half hours?"

He's got their schedule figured out. Lovely.

Harper seems almost resigned to her fate. She knew she was going to go out bloody; or at least shot in between the eyes. Such a grim outlook on life for someone so young, but she has seen some ish! She's been through the thick. In fact, that far away stare she gives just now, makes her think about it with her heart of hearts that puts her in a motion of tying her hair back into a ponytail and out of the face. And she sighs.. mostly because they know each other and this does not bode well.

"Yeah. Cosplay… and what ninjas?" That at least gets her attention more than anything else. Placement is good as any, for Harper turns to keep them both within her sights, her shoulders lowering.. her bag slightly hung off of both shoulders, looking left.. to the right.. to the left..

Kian's answer to both of their questions gets a look, one that she gives Cullen when he lies about being out so late or not having done his homework. "We're on call, jack. Now get out so I can fix this mess. And call me nice or whatever in not calling the police on you.." And she looks to Ranna.. who, gets a little spot of sympathy. Only a little. "And we just have to get you to a hospital." Sure, the bruises have faded, and while Harper believes in ninjas, she doesn't think that they're in New York..

If its any consolation to Harper, Ranna doesn't seem to be about to use that Chakram and apart from that, with her slight build, she doesn't look like she could fight her way of out wet paper bag. Particularly not at the moment.

"Taps?" That stalls The Order ninja for just a moment as her brain skitters and falters on the reference. "You mean … line taps." Not, you know, faucets. Which other parts of the world call 'taps'. "I'm not maintenance." She adds.

"No need for the hospital. Just need to lie low for a bit. They'll be gone shortly and I can return to my …. " her eyes cut to Shiranui, trying to pierce the shadows of his hood. "… lodgings."

Truth be told, she could really do with some Guac and chips about now. She shakes her head.

"Ninjas. You know. The type you see on TV." She says instead. And no, hopped on painkillers and in the middle of a facial wasn't exactly a defining moment for the woman.

The man in the hoodie mistakes the resigned look for annoyance at what he's done. Which it could well be. Harper is doubtless annoyed by that. He backs up slightly. "Well I will admit that it is rather neighborly of you, not calling the police. I… uh… huh…"

And then Harper's mask starts to go. Click. Click. Click. Click. Click. Someone is flipping through the visor settings like a bored guy with a TV remote. And Ranna knows exactly who is doing that. And how.

"You know your mask seems a little bit advanced for someone who is just cosplaying. I like the thermal vision. Nice touch. Are you sure you're working with the city? And not… her." He glances behind Harper right to Ranna. Yes. He saw that circular blade.

"Line taps. Yes. So I can listen in on naughty ninja."

It really has gone on long enough. Even though the bruises on Ranna looked faded, there was still a question of hydration and just a genuine safe place to sleep and eat. What asshole attacks a hospital anyways? But.. line taps? Full blooded ninjas? There was an audible groan coming from the lips of Harper, who soon reaches her hand out to .. not touch Kian, but to usher him out of the door. She'll deal with the 'tapping' issue later. "Yeah yeah yeah.." She mutters, ready to hit some wall of irritation until her mask clicks!

The first one blacks her out completely, the second one sends a whir of information and the others doubly so. She shakes her head quickly, attempting to process just what in the hell was happening until the man speaks.. and..

"Alright, that's enough!" Point, reached!

Her hand lifts to smack a button on the side of her head to lock the infrared into place. But if he could actually do this by standing there? There would be no point. Instead of answering his question, which would have been a solid 'yes, I am working with the City', she takes a kip of a step towards Kian with the intent to kick him square in the chest.

Ranna draws a sharp breath in, her face contorting into a mask of pain, as she reaches out to steady herself against the doorframe. "Would you stop." It's hard to miss the glassy sheen that appears as her eyes water. "Just stop…" It's not enough that she's bruised and battered, now when he uses his abilities, red hot lightning streaks through her brain.

"She's not working for me. You don't have to hurt her. Have at me again if you mu—-" beat "What ninja?"

"I wouldn't do that if I were you…" she warns Harper as the younger woman sets up for a kick.

Well there wouldn't be a point if he insisted on continuing to do it but he doesn't. He was actually a bit more curious about what the mask did and when Harper moves forward to kick him he starts to back up, quickly. Not that he has a whole lot of room and he might still get kicked.

"Woah, easy, easy, easy…" The asian man - his face still somewhat obscured by his hoodie - brings his right arm across his chest to be over his left shoulder. And as he does so a trio of glowing kunai just /appear in his hand. They're… holograms? Something. They're clearly some kind of energy construct and not exactly a physical item. That ticks Ranna one more time but then it stops. Mercifully.

"We're all friends here, right? No need for that. Nobody likes nasty cosplaying ninjas hopping all over town, putting their grubby little Hands on everything like a bunch of Snakes."

That might answer Ranna's question if she's perceptive. And Harper might at least know that there was more said there than the words suggest at first glance.

Warnings and pleadings were nearly gone out the window; Harper heard everything that Ranna said, it was just that the foot was already in motion with a push out before she could draw herself back. In fact, there was only at least three people she's seen successfully do it. Not her!

But she kicks at the air, the foot drawing back with a snap as she places it upon the ground. At least this time she didn't follow through with her core, lest she end up in the splits or spun around. "You…" She takes a step back, still on guard. "..you don't mess with a girls toys without asking!" Like, he seriously didn't even give her a chance to say no! Buy her a burger first! The emergence of the weapons from his hands has her near grimacing, it would hurt it looks like.. but could it have fried her systems? Maybe even blind her? Goddamn it..

"Friends, don't let friends make tap wires in mechanical substations! Friends, don't let friends.. hang out all beat up and in need of rest! Friends.. definitely don't let friends get overtime when she should be home cooking dinner!" Harper was full on tantrum.. but.. ninjas again. Her head hangs and she huffs. Screw it.

"Gimme your computer. -I'll- do it. Last thing I need is for you to kill the power for half a million people in New York." What the hell is she doing? Simple. She was going to piggy back and use the taps for her -own- needs, since Batman is being stubborn..

"Aaargggh" Ranna actually raises her free hand to head when Kian flashes though kunai at Harper. "I.said.stop.please." She's saying please AND she's not attacking him - that's got to be raising an eyebrow or two.

At least its quick and its over. The sharp shooting pain is gone but the headache remains. Her implants are faulty and she's not sure there's anyone who can fix them. This might be her life from now on.

"Speak for yourself. You might be friends with her …" the dark haired woman grumbles to the asian man. Her eyebrows lift though "And what convention are the cosplaying Ninja's in town for?" She got the reference.

"You're going to do it for him? Why … would you do that. You could call the police and have him arrested, couldn't you?"

The hoodie guy lets the kunai just fade when there are no further kicks forthcoming. She could totally just call the police and then there would be a chase and he might get caught and go to jail, yeah. Or he might not. But it would be a huge headache for everyone involved. Literally in Ranna's case.

After a moment's blinking the guy does just hand over his computer. "Well yeah that would be bad. Nothing against them. Just, you know. They've got a small infestation of people who like to run around in their pajamas here in this city. Not that they should feel bad about it. There's plenty of cities like that. Sadly."

Not Detroit though. No one wants to have ninja conventions there.

"Yeah she and I aren't friends if she is who I think she is." She probably is. The one with the serrated circular blade. "They're in town for the pharmaceutical convention. I think. They don't talk to me about it. Hence the taps."

So. Drug companies. Or just drugs. Harper can get that out of all that. Ninjas. Drugs, or medicines. Sounds like something she probably DOES want to know about.

"Sorry about your overtime though, Mask-Lady."

Harper's eyes cut to Ranna as she makes a pained noise. There was concern, but Ranna wasn't falling down, nor going anywhere for the moment. "Yeah. I'm going to help." She states, reaching out for the laptop once it was handed over, keeping it balanced now against her body as she carefully slides off her backpack. "I can call the police, but I see a benefit. Not to mention, even if I call the police I feel like he's going to come back down here and do more damage than it's worth." She lowers herself to a knee, then props the laptop upon the other, all the while balancing, rummaging.. stopping and changing the settings on her visors. Back to rummaging again, she pulls out a flat little box, which soon turns on with a switch.

"I got a little brother, fuckers don't listen."

It was all a convoluted mess, going through the happenings of what she was now doing on the computer. Tapping away upon the keyboards as she listens to the story. Drugs. Yeah, she was into that. Not the way that a man with a hot twenty would be, but the way a cop would or some asshole politician claims to be on the front lines on the war on drugs. Harper is in the thick of it.

"Bluebird." She states as her name, waiting for the device to pair with the computer, and hers.. with the thought of encoding a backdoor into his computer so that she could access some files.

Eh. That would take too long.

"Overtime isn't really what it seems to be. They add it to comp time, which means I can take more days off while still getting paid. It's a scam. Anyways. Ninja's and drug companies. That's all you're running with?" She glances over towards Ranna. "What are you running with?"

It's not clear that Ranna could go anywhere at the moment but she has let the doorframe go. As long as Kian doesn't use his abilities again, she should be fine for a while.

Slowly, the chakram she holds flows back to her bracer, becoming a series of metal scales that cover the surface again.

"Neither do Sisters." she adds sote voco to Harper. "And he would, yes. Come back down here. If not here, somewhere else he could be a pain in the ass." There's the faintest of smirks at the comments on OT, Ranna's always on the clock.

"Ranna." she says simply, eyes cutting to Kian for a moment. Did he know? She doubts it. But she's not in her mask, so it can't be Ryoshi now can it?

"Me? Got sent here to join someone for work." she says simply. "Proving hard to pin him down though. He's a bit of free spirit. Cosplaying Ninjas are a bit of a hobby, though."

"Oh. Shiranui." That's apparently his name. It's probably not his actual, you know, name. The one on his driver's license. But it seems to be his NAME. Like Bluebird.

"That's Ryoshi, if I'm not mistaken. I've never seen her this talky before. Usually she's trying to bury those blades in my throat and telling me that the Order wants me brought in." Oh yeah. THESE two have a complicated history.

"Ninjas, drug companies, some fringe tech that they stole from another ninja clan when they killed a bunch of my friends and oh yeah, let's not forget a plan for world domination." There's a short pause. "I wish I was joking about that. But at least one of groups I'm looking into took 'Everybody Wants To Rule The World' a little too seriously."

What IS Ranna going to say she runs with? That's a mystery to Shiranui.

Ranna. Interesting. No. He didn't know that. "Interesting line of work." Is what the pain in the ass says.

The little side-eye that remains on Ranna gives her a visual to the chakram melding into her bracer. She files that behind for later, then turns to continue her work. She was listening, half in half out, focusing on typing, glancing up, then typing some more. She was doing it well enough to not cause a spark, which she was hoping, and soon enough she puts the laptop down. The little box was grabbed and backpack slid closer, so now that she could see what she was looking for.

"Did he do that to you Ranna?" Harper asks. Cause it looked pretty bad.

"Though now, if I'm not mistaken, you two look like you could do some good together. You know, sans bickering." She stands now, putting the blue putty onto the back of the box, which has her looking around the room for a safe spot to hide it. "From what I have seen from other people, that whole cat and mouse thing has to do with some anthropoligical need to mate, eventually you two are going to end up together. Get married and have kids." Yeah, now Harper was dicking around, mostly just so she could concentrate. "Oh.. you disabled the cameras.." Man, what a pain in the ass this guy is!

See. Pain in the ass. Ranna had told Harper.

Shiranui's comments get a dark eyed glare. "That sounds like The Project to me." She mutters. Is that what she was told about them? Why she was despatched to collect him or neutralise him? Nightwing hadn't got it from her, these two aren't likely to either. She snorts at being talky "I talk when there's someone worth talking to."

It's meant to be cutting but he'll probably just laugh.

"Yes." Comes the answer to Harpers next question. "But I stopped him achieving his goal by taking the beating, so there's that." The Order though, they're not happy with her. She's failed once too often and this time it was visible.

Complicated only begins to describe their background.

"I'm not sure Shiranui's genetic material is quality enough for The Order. It's certainly not for me." She says dismissively. That's it. Just … he's not good enough.

"You seem to know what you're doing."

Shiranui just gestures to Ranna as if to say to Harper 'see what I have to deal with?' "Uh, I did, yes. I'll turn 'em on before I leave though. Didn't want to be filmed for sort of obvious reasons. You'd have to take them apart to turn them back on but I can just…"

He snaps. Like John De Lancie. That would explain how he was flicking through her visor settings. Some kind of telemechanical ability. He clearly hadn't been using it often though because Ranna hadn't felt it.

"I think it's more that age old story. Boy grows up. Boy makes friends. Girl kills them all. Girl tries to kill boy. You know. That classic Disney formula."

Okay she didn't ACTUALLY kill all his friends but her org did so the point kind of stands? In any case his humor is quite dry. "Not entirely certain why she's not trying to kill me now to be honest. What's wrong there Ranna? Don't like having an audience?"

Yeah. He's laughing a little bit. It's either that or cry a lot.

"So what's YOUR interest in all this Bluebird? Didn't think most people were into Ninjas like that. Certainly the only other interest I've really gotten is from a guy who really likes blue birds on his chest and Guacamole and a voice in the radio giving me her two cents."

Two cents. Penny Two? And the other person he's describing HAS to be Nightwing.

He's met Nightwing?

These people are flipping weird! No one is saying, ew gross! They're literally conversating as if they were having the conversation over tea, it was bizarre! Harper just keeps that grin as she finds a spot, moving towards the corner to tug on the iron pipe there. She even looks in between it and the wall to make sure that there were no signs of erosion. "The guy has electric shit coming from his fingers, how is that not great genetic material?" Though, it was an offhanded comment, it wasn't that Harper really cared! But to keep them talking was giving her bits and pieces of information she could use.

"Yeah. Been doing stuff like this since I was a kid. Went to school for it, met some people.. got some tools.." Then, Harper shuts it. The box was tucked in between her lips as she begins to climb the pipe from nothing. Not even a jump or a boost, just all upper body strength. One hand snatches the box from her mouth, and soon she's plastering it against the wall, tucking it back to make it seem like a fixture. No one would think to look there.

Letting go, she lands upon her feet, then moves back towards the laptop with a kneel. The snap gets her attention, but she's already figured out that he could do that without physical meddle! Swell. "Actually, Disney probably hadn't been in production when that formula came out. I think it's more Shakespearean.." Harper mutters, then tippity tap taps away.

"Well, I got a kid brother. I'd rather see him safe. But there's this asshole out there who I've never caught and I want second crack at it. And I'm going to do it this time, even if I have to go through the entire echelon of jerks to do it." But.. now she was quiet again. Someone who likes to wear blue birds? Could that have been Nightwing? Was he back in the game too?

In fact, she had to smirk at that. A blue bird on his chest. Her name is Bluebird. Wonder where she got -that- name from?!

Chick on the radio.. hmm.. that was a bit new. Could it have been Catwoman? So.. someone has at least met the batfamily. And this is all irritating her that she -has- to do what Batman says and to contact Nightwing. For fucks sake.

"Alright. Let's make a deal. I give you one hundred dollars, you help Ranna get out of here and get her something to eat and a safe place to stay. You keep access to this substation for a week and I'll deem it under construction for a week. Then we meet back here next Sunday. Deal?" She looks to both of them, waiting for an answer.

"He has guacamole on his shirt?" Ranna asks, pinging Kian for his grammar. "His genetic material might be good for some, but it's not good enough for me." The dusky skinned woman sniffs, watching Harper as she shimmies up that pipe. Impressive. Ranna, of course, would have leapt easily enough - even with her implants on the fritz.

"I don't need his help." Stubborn creature that she is, starts to back out of the room, and into the tunnels. "I'm doing fine on my own. And for the record. We didn't kill your friends. We'd like to know who it was too, it has bearing …" Bearing on what? She's not saying. She starts to fade into the shadows.

She's still listening. She might be back on Sunday, but she's making no promises.

"I'll try…" Shiranui says dubiously. "But for now I think it's time we left." Because he's gotten everything done that he wanted and two people have already showed up. He's not waiting for anyone to find, follow or notice them.

Saying that he steps out carefully past Ranna and waits. He has no doubt the woman will head off on her own but he can keep a promise. Throwing burgers in her window for example. And medical supplies. Is that worth access to this place? It might be.

"Let me just turn the cameras back on." Snap. He doesn't need the snap. But turning the cameras back on will give Ranna a headache. And that's a nice bonus.

"Talk to you later, Bluebird. And if you run into Guac Bird Guy, tell him I said hi."

He laughs a bit at his own joke as he heads up the maintenance tunnel. And the cameras… come back on.

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