2019-08-29 - Plans Within Plans


Batgirl has information to share with Shiranui

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Thu Aug 29 07:11:42 2019
Location: Staten Island

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Barbara Gordon dropped Thumbdrive.

It's late in New York, past the Witching Hour. The streets in Staten Island aren't empty but they're emptier than they are during the day. It's a toss up as to whether those on the streets are up to no good or simply transiting between home, fun and/or work. Staten Island is a hive of villainy, after all.

On a tall building, a single figure is crouched, looking down at the streets. The peaked 'ears' on their head make a silhouette where the light hits them but they're unmoving. A slim gargoyle adorning the ledge.

A certain ninja received a message to meet at this point, at this time. Will he show? Batgirl doesn't know but she's here and she's waiting.

Batgirl might be surprised at how quietly the ninja can move about. Might be, but won't be because Oracle is watching her back and spots the figure moving amid the rooftops before he arrives. He's on time at least. Or on time ish which is as good as it ever gets in Staten Island.

The sound of bootfalls on the rooftop announces his arrival. Opposite side, plenty of room between them. He hadn't been especially keen on giving Batgirl a way to contact him but had permitted it just a little. So here he is.

"You rang, I believe. No company tonight?"

You have incoming, Batgirl. Oracle subvocalises in the redheads ear. Batgirl doesn't turn or flinch when the bootfalls sound. The feeds to the area are projected on her hud, she knows he's there and approaching.

"Shiranui. I called, not rang. Unless your transceiver has a sound like a phone." It's hard to tell with her modulator if she's joking or not as she rises and turns, cloak flaring about her to reveal the yellow lining before falls from her shoulders again.

"No company. I work alone mostly." She answers, taking the opportunity to look the man over. He can't see the brillant green eyes behind her mask but he can feel the regard. She's curious and if he feels she's cataloguing him, he'd be right.

"I thought it time I showed you mine."

"That sounds vaguely personal." The ninja says. He is armed, as often he is, with a sword and a sidearm. Batgirl has seen him fight before. She knows he won't hesitate to use both weapons as they were intended. The Bats, they tend to stick to clubs, staves or punches. Not Shiranui. She'd chided him on that.

And his response had not been at all receptive.

"You have had some time to do investigating I imagine?" His voice is modulated as well though it's really difficult to tell how. Everything Batgirl and Oracle can see indicates advanced technology, but not who made it. Or how.

"Does it now?" The redhead answers. Along with the yellow accents on her cape, her hair is the defining feature about her. In her suit, she's just 'another bat' isn't she. "Maybe it's supposed to."

"No hanger ons? No one following you? Not going to be surprised by a bunch of Hand getting the jump on you?" She's still scanning his suit and trying to analyse it. Not that she has much tech to do that. "Interesting set of abilities you have. You give Oracle a run for her money when you try to hack systems."

Her eyes finally fall on the sword and the sidearm, her posture changing slightly. It's the silence that follows that should tell him how much she disapproves.

"Investigating what Oracle gives me, yes. That's what she does." Taking a data stick from a compartment in her pouch, she holds it out to him between gloved fingers. "Details on the pharma companies you've hit. Boards of Directors, Major Shareholders - public and private, Management Structures and who owns them." That's a lot of data to be gathered. Some of it … definitely isn't public domain.

"Not that I am aware of. The Hand very rarely gets the jump on me though. Usually it is the other way around." Though they DO definitely hunt Kian. Not as actively as the Order of Si-Fan but still. They're here and they're pretty thick on the ground from what he can tell.

Shiranui steps up to take the data stick and plug it into a small reader. "Mmmmmmmmmmmmm. I'll need some time to go over this carefully but from what you have here it looks like the Order of Si-Fan is providing the main economic infrastructure for this operation though Order owned shell companies. I recognize these board members as aliases of high ranking members in the Order. The Hand and the Snakeroot look to be using their connections in the docks to bring in…" He scrolls a bit. "People and materials though what and what for isn't quite clear. This is presumably related to the drug the Hand seems to be manufacturing in great quantity. Hrm. These three people have multiple key positions. That must be the three major leaders. One from each of the clans, if I had to guess. No official meetings with just the three of them though. They must do their coordination off the books."

He's talking as if he has a lot of experience with these people which DOES seem to be the case.

"So you're the Orcale's… hand and fist, then?" He almost said 'gopher' but didn't want to insult the woman.

"That's not what I've noted lately." The black clad woman answers. "Or if it's not, they usually drop a lot on you."

"Make sure you scan it, you never know what tracking or trojans we might have embedded in it." Is she saying that to scare him or is she highlighting that it's clean and she's not worried if he does. "Order of Si-Fan? Oracle, what have you got on that?" Though there's a way her mask fixes on Shiranui's face that expects him to answer. "All of those organisations are subsidiaries Fujikawa Limited, a wholly owned Japanese company. I don't think any of this is a coincidence."

"We haven't included the addresses of those people but we have them. I was going to pay a visit to some of them. Have a little chat." She's confident, if nothing else. "But if those three are doing off the books meetings, I'm sure I can find them."

"Hand and fist? I suppose you could say that. They help me and I help them." beat "What's your interest in all this?"

"Oh, track me, please." The voice is amused. Is she trying to scare him? "I'd really like to see what happens when you do. I could use the entertainment." A bluff? Or does he have counter tracking measures in place. It would make sense if he does. He is, seemingly, unsupported and hunted. He has to have some manner of security precautions or he'd have been dead before now. Of course that's not to say that Oracle might not be able to find him. She's good at that.

"If these are as I suspect high ranking members of ninja clans, then they won't be alone even in their homes and they will personally be very formidable. One does not rise to a high station in such a clan by being good at pushing papers."

Shiranui is silent for a few moments, possibly thinking.

"The Order of Si-Fan is the name of an East Asian criminal syndicate. They are not known to have extensive interests outside of their traditional area of business." The Oracle provides.

Shiranui shakes his head. "More an ancient secret society. They're incredibly widespread and very ambitious on top of that.They have access to all manner of advanced and illegal technologies. The other two groups we're dealing with are a bit more traditionalist. But it makes sense if all of the properties involved here are coming from a single source. They would have wanted to limit the exposure of their assets to possible investigation and risk. So keeping all of these tech companies and pharma companies under the same banner prevents too much of the network from being traced and compromised at any one time. Plus the fact that they're not American limits what Law Enforcement here could do if it got involved."

Shiranui turns to pace a little bit. He seems… comfortable turning his back? If only for a few moments. "It's personal. I am familiar with all of these organizations. And I have lost friends to them."

"I'm sure you could. I've reviewed the footage of your fights. You need the work." Batgirl answers. Could she track him? Probably. Well, Oracle could. Would she want to?

Not yet.

"How many of the crime bosses that live here do you think are ever alone?" The black clad bat asks - it's hard to get her mood with her voice altered. "And with a bit of planning, I will know when they move, how they move and when they're at their most vulnerable. Do you know how many men hate to have me drop in on their shower?"

Would she do it?

"So, let me get this straight. An ancient secret society has set up a crime syndicate in my town? They're using that to peddle drugs that … do what, exactly … and they're headed by Ninja's. Tell me are there pirates as well?"

When Shiranui turns his back, she doesn't move though she is looking that suit over carefully. He *must* have camera's there.

Shiranui puts his palms up, fingers spread, as if to mollify Batgirl. "I am sure you are quite skilled. I'm simply saying that anyone you go to find will be rightfully confident in their ability to handle trouble. So you'd better go with some leverage or otherwise be prepared to prove them wrong."

What does an underboss in a ninja clan fight like? Batgirl will possibly find out.

"No it's slightly better than that. An ancient secret society has partnered with a pair of honest to god ninja clans to produce drugs that are in some way sanctified to the demon-god of one of those ninja clan. WHY they're doing this I don't know but they fact that they ARE is cause enough for alarm by itself."

If he does have cameras in there, then they're not obvious. The workmanship is good and the tech extremely high quality.

"And they're only pirates if you count their streaming habits but it figures that they wouldn't pay for HBO, really."

"Do I look like I'm reckless?" The redhead asks. It would be quiet normally. "I know how to find leverage and whilst I often work alone, it's not always. As you've seen." As to be willing to prove herself. She's here, isn't she?

She's going to need to train some more. She'll get Orphan to help with that - not that she'll expect to best the younger Bat - just have her ass handed to her less.

"That's better? Drugs that are sanctified to a Demon God is better? Not that I believe all that mumbo jumbo but … " She thinks "We need to know what those are doing." Didn't they have a sample they were waiting on lab results for?

"I'm disappointed that there aren't real Pirates. I like a good swashbuckling story."

"What are you doing to stop them?" Cause so far, Batgirl doesn't think he's been very successful.

"You're on a rooftop, wearing a bat costume." Shiranui says flatly. Does she look reckless? Welllllll… Yes.

"The drugs are killing people in large numbers but I'm positive that's simply a side effect. What I'm doing at the moment is going after their production centers and trying to learn all I can about why they're here and what brings three ordinarily rival organizations together. The easiest way to break this up will be to get them at eachother's throats again. But in order to do that we need to know why they aren't there now."

Shiranui simply doesn't have enough information. Yet. But what Batgirl has provided will help.

"I mean. It also helps if their leaders meet unfortunate ends, I suppose."

"That's not reckless." Batgirl answers not being drawn on that discussion further.

"I have a batch of the drugs with a chemist, I'll follow up and find out what they know. That will help." She answers. "I hope. Attacking the production centres is a good start however, they'll just move their operations. You're making it expensive though and that's a good thing. We need to get some leverage."

"Making them distrust each other … " She has to think on that but it should be possible to make each of them think the others are out to screw them.

They're likely disposed to think that in the first place so it should be possible without prohibitive effort. It's just finding the right pressure points that's the issue. Batgirl is right. They need more leverage.

"I will say this, ninja clans are experts at misdirection. So it is possible that the wide distribution of the drugs is cover for something more targeted."

That complicates things. Criminals in Staten Island can't often afford to engage in that kind of misdirection.

"If we can communicate with some of their former 'laborers' that might help. But they rather deliberately make that difficult in a number of ways."

Batgirl knows how paranoid crime bosses are. Tweaking that paranoia shouldn't be too difficult. Though it is a balance they need to be careful of - it could easily bubble over to something worse than they have.

"No kidding? Smoke and mirrors? I wonder why I didn't think of that." She's being sarcastic as she watches the ninja. "Oracle can scrub that data and research the companies. We'll set up watches and run the crimes that we're seeing through filters - see if we can detect some patterns. Whatever they're doing *will* leave a footprint, we just have to know what to look for."

She seems confident at least.

"We can get access to the workers we picked up the other day. Would that help?"

"It could help yes, but only if you can find a way to get through to them. Between being drugged, being used as forced labor and having their voice boxes removed, I doubt any of them will be much use right away. Do you know a good psychologist?" Shiranui means that honestly of course because that's probably what it is going to take.

"In the mean time I can try to get rid of some of their middle management. They're easier to find and the disruption in the street level operations will slow things. It might even compel the big guns to come out and deal with it personally."

"We might, yes. And not having a voice box doesn't mean they can't communicate. It is though, as you point out, the psychological damage that is more concerning. I'll see which of our contacts is available to help." If Batgirl feels any remorse for having to question these people it doesn't show.

Does it worry her though?

"Get rid of … you mean kill, right?" The redhead lets out sigh. "These are flesh and blood people we're talking about. Do you have to kill them when you do?"

While Batgirl can't see Shiranui's eyes - his mask covers his entire face - she can definitely tell he's staring at her when he turns around. "What else, exactly, do you propose that I do with them?"

He remembers of course that she told him not to kill in the last encounter with the Hand. He had thought it odd then and he definitely thinks it odd now. The Bat clan has a reputation for ruthlessness, carefully cultivated he is sure but he wonders exactly how well earned it is.

"Restrain them for the authorities of course." Batgirl answers quite simply. Oh yes she knows he's staring at her and can't comprehend it. He's not the only one but it is a Batfamily thing.

"They are living, breathing, people and there's a legal system to deal with them." It's hypocritical really, she knows that. The Bats are vigilantes and take the law into their own hands regularly.

"That's rather amusing coming from someone who clearly doesn't care about laws enough not to routinely break them all the time." The flatness comes through. A lot. Shiranui folds his arms. "It is almost as if you think that the legal system might not be up to the challenge of dealing with these people. As, possibly, evidenced by the fact that it has failed to do so up to this point."

The unfortunate thing here is that Shiranui isn't really going to argue that killing people is NOT bad. He's just going to argue that as a line in the sand, given the situation, it doesn't make a whole lot of sense.

"And that assumes that they're not simply going to be extradited to their nations of origin where they will face no trial at all. Which is generally the case with these people. Not that they're going to make it easy to restrain them. They'll fight to kill. If you decide not to, I'll let you guess what kind of an advantage that gives them. Now, maybe you with support from the Oracle can take that hit. Clearly you're not hurting for resources or friends."

The ninja gestures at the vast expanses of empty air behind him. "*I* on the other hand don't have that luxury."

"That could change." Batgirl answers slowly, gesturing to the expanse of air behind Shiranui. "And no, we think that the police are spread thin and can't address all the crime there is. More importantly, the police aren't equipped to deal with some of the crime that is perpetrated - we however …" She shrugs.

"Do you think the police can deal with your Ninja's?" The answer is no, they can't, and Batgirls not wrong. "However, once we've restrained them they go through the system. I'm no ones judge, jury and executioner. If that was the case, people would be trying to kill me as well."

Which … they are. But not the 'good guys'.

"That's inconsistent and you know it. To say that the system needs so much help on the one hand that you have to violate it blatantly in order to serve it, but to claim on the other that you cannot be responsible for meting the punishments." Shiranui says. "The fact of the matter is the system is inadequate and your very presence here in that costume is a testament to the fact that you agree. You simply don't want to face the logical conclusions of admitting that it has failed."

Shiranui heads to the edge of the building and then looks back. "And regardless of whether or not it could change, it remains a fact at the time of speaking. What I am going to do is engage some very nasty, very skilled people in sword fights. If it happens that they survive those fights, then as a gesture of good faith I won't go out of my way to end their lives and will direct the authorities toward them. But by the same token, I'm not going out of my way to preserve their lives either. If they die, they die. Criminality is a dangerous game."

"Or we don't want to admit that it's not irredeemable." Batgirl counters "And we don't want our influence to tip it that way." It is inconsistent but consistency won't work in this situation. Both of them know it - just the Bats cling to that thin veneer of justice.

"I appreciate the concession." The masked redhead responds. She'll bring him around, she's sure. "Think about my offer, though. You don't have to do this alone." She can see he's leaving and steps back to give him room.

"Either way, I'll be in touch when Oracle has more."

"Until then." Shiranui steps off the ledge. There's a thrum about fifty feet down and the next time Oracle spots him, he's moving amid the rooftops and wires. That could have gone worse, really, all things considered.

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