2019-09-05 - Lost Identity


A visit to the good Detective Grayson casts a little more light on Gabrielles backbone

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Thu Sep 5 08:05:11 2019
Location: Precinct House

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2320 Hylan Blvd is the address of the 122nd NYPD Precinct. It has definitely seen better days. The paint is peeling, a little and the lawn always seems just slightly overgrown. The officers who work in it work hard if they work at all, though some don't preferring to skate by doing as little as humanly possible.

It's at this precinct that Detectives Gibbs and Grayson work when they're not out handling an admittedly voluminous caseload. The two detectives were known to the trio of people who have been recently active in the Disaster Zone and all three had reasons to want to visit them.

Well, two of the three did. T'Challa is indeed quite curious about Detective Grayson in particular though he doesn't have personal business with the man. Still, he had arranged a time to visit and rounded up - as much as he could - the other two. It is early afternoon when they arrived. The Wakandan prince at least is immaculately dressed but then he usually is. Directions to the homicide division are acquired and likely the first thing Grayson hears will be an accented voice inquiring about him.

"Can you tell me where Detectives Gibbs and Grayson work?"

"Over there, sir."

"Ah, thank you very much." It's a rather african accent. Clearly someone is not from around here.

The troupe of the Bullpen in regards to homocide detective desks locations is … well founded. Set up like a series of cubicles without walls, desks are often slammed together back to back so that partners stare at one another over mountains of paper work, old flickering computer monitors, and stale coffee while filling a room with the vauge background noise of constant phone chatter, ringing phones unanswered, laughter from some gallows humor joke made at some dead shmucks expense, or the childlike video game sound effects that pour from the handful of cell phones being used to play Candy Crush or it's intelectual equivilent under the guise of 'police work'.

The two men in question could not be more dissimilar without layers of cosmetic surgery. Gibbs is overweight, slovenly, his button down doesn't match his suit, it's got grease stains on it, and his arm pits are slightly damp in the summer heat, not enough to be see through or anything but just enough to let you know he hasn't bathed in a day or two. His coat is layed over the back of his chair and his considerable bulk is currently sprawled in said office chair, feet on the desk, snoring into the air with an impressively regular beat. Balding, going gray, it's hard to judge his age honestly, shoes are worn and there's mud on one of them (one hopes that mud anyway), his suit pants are frayed at the edges, and worn wrinkled. He looks for all the world like a well fed homeless man sleeping off a solid night of 5th's if one didn't account for his surroundings.

The other man… well. He's different. Younger, shockingly good looking, he has fire and intent in his actions. His desk is a very neat and organized counter to his partner's mayhem of half finished moldy sandwhiches and half dozen coffee cups of inderterminate age. Papers are neatly stacked, random pens and penciles are put away, a legal pad for notes is kept front and center of the desk, and it's filled with jotted ideas and commentary, added to constantly as the young man in question, chats into the phone and jots down information. "Uh-huh." he says evenly, jotting down more notations. He's fit, dressed in more 'street' clothes then a suit, jeans, sneakers, t-shirt, and a pea coat put him as easly able to blend in anywhere he goes. His gun isn't in sight at the moment, but an ASP is clipped to his belt along with cuffs, and his badge hangs around his neck on a chain, bouncing rhythmically against his chest as he rocks in his chair with barely pent up energy.

If these two men were more opposite, they'd be a sitcom couple. It's almost jarring.

Mari McCabe flashes a brilliant smile to the officer that addresses the group. "Thank you." She's in fine form today. Dressed immaculately to kill - visually that is - and on a mission.

That mission to ask some questions of one Detective Grayson and maybe find out if Gibbs has any leads to his other problems. Well, some of her other problems.

"Detective Gibbs, Detective Grayson." She holds her hand to both men. "Mari McCabe. I was wondering if we could have some time? This is T'Challa and Gabrielle." Grayson at least knows Gabrielle. And Mari hopes Gibbs hasn't forgotten her.

Gabrielle Doe has been staying with Mari, and even though she heads into the Zone with a lot of the food left out for her the regularity of the meals has definitely helped. She's still thin but doesn't look quite so gaunt and malnourished. Her hair is a golden blonde thanks to regular washing, which just makes the rainbow streak all the brighter.

The clothes the young woman wears are mostly casual, but as they were provided by Mari are likely worth more money than the young woman's ever seen. Her favorite part about them? They're clean! Jeans, white tank top with a rainbow belt that mimics the colors in her hair.

Gabrielle bounces up to her toes at times, working to see All The Things while also remembering to keep her feet on the ground and not go floating upwards. As Mari greets the detectives Gabrielle lifts an arm and gives a winning smile, waving that whole arm. "Mr. Cheese!"

Cheese is awesome.

It's almost a dead ringer in T'Challa's mind that Gibbs neither knows nor cares who he is though perhaps the detective will surprise him. Dick may well if he follows the news. Wakandan royalty have to make a little bit of a splash even if the prince tries to avoid too many lights and cameras.

He's just in the process of extending his hand to shake and give a calm, assured greeting when Gabrielle CLEARLY sees someone she already knows. "I was unaware that Grayson was a kind of cheese. Perhaps I have been missing out?"

His grin is light and slightly amused. "Pleased to meet you, Detectives. One of you has obviously met Gabrielle before?"

She may have mentioned the cheese to either Mari or T'Challa but at the moment the prince cannot recall if she did.

He'll let Mari and Gabrielle get on with their business for the moment though he may have questions of his own shortly.

Dick Grayson stands as the group approaches his desk, and he flashed a sincere and easy grin at the lot of them, "Time is the coin of your life, it is the one currency for which you will earn more or, and once lost can never be returned. One should be careful whom they let spend it." he says in a tone of someone quoteing a line, "I figure I can make time for royalty and my favorite DZ dweller." he turns that smile on Gabrielle easily, "Got some news for you when you're ready." he adds almost as an after thought, then he's taking hands and shaking them. T'Challa gets a greeting in Wakandan… or at least what the Google's tell Dick is a traditional Wakandan greeting. His accent is for shit, but he's actually not far off on the wording, and he made the effort, which Dick has found usually goes a long way. He then reaches out, plucks his stapler off the desk, and casually flings it at his partner, letting it bounce off the sleeping man's tummy.

Gibbs sits up with a snort and a sputter and looks around with bloodshot and blurry eyes, "Whowhatfuckwhenkillyou." he mutters all as a single word. "Wake up. We have company." he says, and Gibbs just blinks a bunch, rubbing at his eyes, "Shit." he mutters under his breath, trying to come to enough to figure out what's going on.

Dick just shakes his head, "Long night, stake out, forgive him. What can I do for you unexpectedly grouped together lot? Gotta admit, most people don't come to us here, we usually go to them." which is a nice way to say that homocide doesn't get walk ins, it gets called to the scenes of it's crimes. This is pretty rare for Grayson. He also looks around, then begins gathering seats from nearby desks and bringing them over so everyone can sit.

Mari moves to the side to let T'Challa and Gabrielle talk to the Detective, making sure the younger woman is comfortable.

"We were hoping you did … about Gabrielle that is." He'll deliver when he's ready and maybe Gabrielle has questions.

Gabrielle Doe smiles over at T'Challa, without any of the deference or awe that most might give the prince. "No, he's not a kind of cheese, he's the guy *with* the cheese!" Then she pauses. "There's more than one kind of cheese?" She turns to Gabrielle with wide, excited eyes. "We need to try them all!"

The sudden passion for cheese is curtailed when Grayson says he's got news, and Gabrielle turns back to Grayson. "Right! Yes! Why we came." She smooths her hands down over her shirt and nods. This is her Serious Face.

"That would be a world tour by itself, Gabrielle." T'Challa laughs. "Hello Detective Gibbs. I am certainly willing to be understanding of New York's hard working police force, yes."

The prince clasps his hands behind his back. "In addition to questions about Gabrielle we were also wondering if more had been found on the robbery attempts made upon Miss McCabe?" T'Challa glances to Mari to follow that up. She'll know those details better than he. He also tries to suppress another laugh when Gabrielle puts on her serious face.

It's not especially serious. Or rather it looks almost childlike, in a good way. A… clean and innocent way, really.

"I do hope we are not dropping in at too busy a time?"

Dick Grayson shakes his head, "It's the homocide department on Staten Island, there are no slow times, come when you can." he flops down in his seat and begins digging through a filing cabinet, "Are you suer you wish to have this conversation in front of your uh… friends?" he asks Gabrielle, his tone suggesting that his news isn't entirely spectacular. He finally pulls out a file, and it's thick enough to not just be a basic back ground, but neither does it 'thud' its way onto the table. Someone has a history, but happily it doesn't appear to approach 'super villain' territory.

Dick pointedly dosn't open the file, just rests his hand atop it almost protectively.

Gibbs for his part just seems to get his bareings enough to no and mutter barely intelligable greetings (mostly to Mari) before falling silent and letting Grayson take over. His hands fold on his tummy and he stares at the group through half lowered sleepy lids exuding all the air in the world of someone who can barely be bothered enough to keep his eyes open.

"All the cheese, Gabrielle?" Mari smiles. "I'll be sure to have the housekeeper bring different ones in for you."

Gibbs muttered greetings gets another smile from the ex-model. "Gabrielle asked us to come with her, Detective Grayson and I'm working in the zone with her, looking for clues about her origins. There's been some … activity around her that leaves both T'Challa and I a little concerned. Hence our showing up here."

As to Mari's problems, there's little informaton but there is some. The last attempt, Gibbs or perhaps it was Grayson himself, has managed to track one of the thieves down. There's ties back to Africa in a region near, but not in Mohannda. Organised crime, by what he can find.

The question gets a furrowed brow and look of confusion from Gabrielle. She looks back and forth between T'Challa and Mari and then back to Dick with concern. "Are there bad words? I think they're OK with bad words. Mari uses them sometimes when she thinks I can't hear." The blonde looks at Mari and gives a sheepish, guilty sort of shrug.

Turning back to Dick she nods, again looking a bit more serious. "Yes, please Mr. Detective." Her gaze flits over to the file, and then move from it back over to Grayson as she worries her bottom lip. "Is it bad news?"

The Wakandan prince can't help but smile. There it is again. That sense of innocence. Not quite naivety. Just… someone to whom the worse things do not occur. The smile is short lived though. That is a THICK file and in a police station there's only two reasons for that: The subject of the file is dead, or the subject of the file has a lot of… history with the law.

Very quickly he recalls to mind the phone numbers of his lawyers and hopes very sincerely that Gabrielle won't need them. The people she cares for in the Zone will be in serious trouble without her.

"Yes, do show us, Detective, if you can?" He says quietly. "If you've met her before, detective, are you aware of how… special, she is?" That's deliberately worded and it goes hand in hand with Mari's comment about unusual activity around her. Unusual activity like a being that seems to recognize her and wants her dead. Or… something.

The prince glances at Mari again but awaits the grand reveal as it were.

Dick Grayson nods his head and offers an encouraging smile that's warm and gentle, and it goes a looooooong way to hide the shrewdness in his eyes that miss nothing when he speaks. He flicks the cover of the file open and pulls out the first paige, "Violet Haper, that's your name." he says, turning the page around so Gabrielle can see it. Her photo there is a straight mug show, and it's um… well, not so flattering. Unless hatefilled stares and slightly snearing smiles with mad bed head hair is your thing.

"Your from a small nothing town in Missouri, and apparently you got off to a pretty rough start young. We've got a handful of run ins for shoplifting, theft, and petty larceny running all the way up into your late teens, but that's mostly mischeif and who didn't act out a little bit?" he asks, pointing to the relivent dates and charges on the first page, then he flips through a few more and pulls out another, turnign it around for them to all see. "Then you went and got all grown up."

His tone suggests this isn't a great turn of events for her, "Ms. Harper, you did not make a great many good decisions. Got involved with some bad people, stepped your game up, started dealing in short cons, some small time drug stuff, nothing to serious, but frequent enough you were known in your counter. You left that town for the big city around the ripe old age of twenty-one where you stepped your game up again. This tiem you got involved with Bad People." he takes a breath and shoots Gibbs a look, who's noncommital grunt makes Dick go forward, "pulling out a photo from inside the file and showing it to Gabrielle, "Do you know this man?" the photo is of an enomous human being, layered in fat and muscle he looks more like human shapped blubber then just a human. Hairless, with beady pink eyes, his unnatureally white skin shows him instantly to be an albino, and the ten thousand dollar Italian custum tailored suit he's wearing marks him as a man of means.

Mari chuckles "I do swear, yes. And I'm not sure that's what Detective Grayson is getting at." the ex-model moves to stand next Gabrielle, putting a hand on her shoulder as Dick starts his explanation.

With T'Challa bracketing Gabrielle, she might feel a little … safer? Reassured?

"Oh. Well. That's something." Mari frowns as she looks at the mugshot, giving the younger womans shoulder a slight squeeze. "Are there any outstanding warrants for Miss Haper, Detective?" Mari doesn't recognise the man but she doesn't like how he looks. "This isn't someone we've seen in the Zone, is it T'Challa?"

At the moment, her stuff will wait. Gibbs or Grayson will give her that information to digest, later.

Gabrielle Doe looks at the pictures that Grayson offers, stepping forward to flip through them if he allows. Her brow is furrowed the entire time, focused and also.. confused. She shakes her head and looks at him. At Gibbs. At Mari and T'Challa and shakes her head. "This isn't me." Letting the photos go she steps back a pace, still shaking her head. "This can't be… me? I wouldn't do things like that."

When Dick shows her the photo of the unnaturally pale man she shakes her head, having crowded in a bit closer to Mari. "No." That at least, she sounds sure of." I've never seen him." A frown. "No one dresses like that in the Zone."

T'Challa puts what he hopes is a comforting hand on Gabrielle's shoulder. "No, Gabrielle. None of us think you would." Well, neither he nor Mari do.

Cons make sense, short cons and long cons. But people's personality just doesn't change that much, at least not in his experience. So he's not especially worried that Mari is getting conned.

"If I may, Detective?" The Prince starts paging through the file, flipping to look at pictures and scan text.

"None of these pictures have that rainbow streak in them…" He says finally, looking up at Mari. "And I think I can confidently say at this point that streak is not artificial." It is the world's most durable dye job if it is. "And there's no mention at all in here of her glowing. I would think that would be rather prominent…"

Glowing. Has Dick seen her Glow 'TM'. She didn't get that in Harlem after all.

The question of whether or not there are any outstanding warrants is a good one and T'Challa definitely wants to hear the answer but… the discrepancies alone are enough to make him wonder if this is indeed the right person. It does LOOK like her.

"I take it this was run off of biometric data, Detective?" Because if so… that's a HELL of a mystery.

Dick Grayson shakes his head, "You're quite correct, they don't dress like that in the Zone, they dress like that in the nightclubs and high end penthouses across the rive when their money is funneled through the city, specifically the Island itself." he takes the photo back and slips it back into the file, "It's sad really, by all accounts you're very bright. Memory like a steel trap it says here, able to recite things and recall facts when you've only seen the source material once or twice. Verbatim. Photographic memory, or near enough as to have earned the title I suppose." he offers a little shrug, "Last we have paper on you you were working for the man in the photos, plenty of suspected criminal acts including helping move a shockingly large amount of questionable or controled substances through customs. Unclear how you pulled it off, but it was awhile back, likely slipped through the cracks." he continues oneward, flipping through the pages withotu really looking at them, instead he keeps checking her expression, reading her like a book. "And no. No warrants. They're a touch out of date and statute of limitations might not be up on the few you have in, but by the time you're processed, charged, and put in fron of a judge, they will be. So-" he makes a shrugging like gesture of 'fuck it' and offers her a bit of an easy grin.

T'Challa takes the file and will find it concise and neatly arrainged, and also oddly… light. As if it were put together, but carefully so, in a controlled manner. Limited even, if he were the paranoid sort to suspect that sort of thing of a cop. He leans back as the prince goes through his questions, "Not sure any of that matters." he says to T'Challa simply. "Look. I don't know what's going on with your girl, but I know this much. Her fingerprints come back linked to two dozen crimes across a decade of meddling in what I could generously call 'poor company'. I don't know what happened to her, but I know this much, she's a /hairs/ breath away from doing serious time." he holds up a thumb and forefinger about an eight of an inch apart.

He turns his attention to Gabrielle and sighs, letting his hand fall down to his lap and reaching up to rub at his eyes, "Look, you seem like a nice enough lady, but the file also claims you have sociopathic tendencies and are an /extremely/ skilled liar, having talked or acted your way out of multiple charges. Like I said," he points at her, "bright." meaning smart. "But I have nothign with which to hold you, at least nothing worth my time. I have two dead bodies on the shore line, a gang shooting four blocks east of hear, and a shipping container we're pretty sure was used to ferry human trafficing victims last week. This," he motions at the file, "is some fairly petty stuff, or at least stuff that took place elsewhere. I don't know if you have a clean slate here memorywise or if this is just an elaborate con, either way, it's a new start. I suggest you take it for all it's worth, and whatever you do," he leans across the desk to flip trough a couple of pages of the file to show the photo of the albino man again, "Steer. Clear. Of. This. Man." he makes each word it's own statement. "Otherwise you may become my problem in a way neither of us wants." and he sounds like he means this, like a person would, not a cop.

Steer clear of that man? Mari snorts softly as she wraps an arm about Gabrielles shoulders. "It will be alright, Gabrielle. We know something now and if you don't want to go back to that life, you don't have to." Mari means, she shouldn't and the ex-model will fight tooth and nail - literally - to keep the young woman safe.

"If there are no warrants, then this is a good thing. I find it hard to believe that this is the same woman as Gabrielle from those photos." That earns T'Challa a look. "You're right. The rainbow streak is different, most certainly among other things."

"Who is that man, by the way? You said that Ms Haper worked for him? And honestly, Gabrielle, no one should wear clothing like that."

Gabrielle might not go near that man, but Mari might. Or Vixen, at any rate.

Gabrielle Doe's normally bubbly mannerism is much more subdued now. Were she glowing, as she often is when she's not making a specific effort not to draw attention to herself, it would likely be dimly so.

As Mari offers her that shoulder and support, Gabrielle turns in towards her to hide her face. To block out the world so she can *think*. It's like having your legs kicked out from under you (and not being able to fly). There's nothing about her body language that reads as 'con', but apparently Violet Harper was very good at that.

And are there better marks than Mari McCabe and the prince of Wakanda?

Normally it is the African Prince that is doing the scamming and not the other way around. T'Challa, rather than insisting that it doesn't seem like the same person, merely looks thoughtful. "If the biometrics match that is quite the mystery. That would suggest to a high degree of certainty that it IS indeed the same woman. And yet… the difference in physical characteristics and the…" He looks up at Mari and Gabrielle and then at Dick. "… significant difference in extranormal abilities suggest just the opposite. That sounds like a mystery a skilled and dedicated detective might want to look into, if indeed he had the time."

Gibbs might juuuuust miss the 'extranormal abilities' part. It was pitched so that it wouldn't carry far. Giving the file an experimental heft and another thoughtful - almost curious - look he hands it back to Dick.

"We have absolutely no wish to cause you problems, Detective Grayson. I will take your advice quite seriously." And T'Challa will. T'Challa doesn't get into trouble. That's for his feline friend.

"Tell me, does that particular man have known interests in the Disaster Zone? Because there are seriously dangerous things happening in there from what I hear and they may start spilling out, if they have not already."

Gabrielle gets a concerned glance but Mari has that well in hand it seems.

"And some of that may have to do with Gabrielle, here, as Mari can attest."

Dick Grayson eyes T'Challa for a long moment, "Seriously?" he asks with a hint of incredulity to his tone, "All due respect Highness, people pop up with a new Mutant power that changes their appearance on a /daily/ basis here. If you think a sudden dye job and some rave lighting effects are enough to make her a new person then I have bridge /just/ across the river I wanna sell you." he points out. Physical changes, especailly extreme ones, are par for the course int he modern day and age, why the keep tying to make it more then it seems is a mystery to Dick, unless of course they had an alterior motive. And really… why would they? Huh. Now /that/ is a good question.

He doesn't give the man's name because he's not stupid and the last thing Grayson needs is rich people meddleing in the affairs of the downtrodden on his Island. Ahem. Untrained civilians get dead out this way, and he's not about to leave them a trail of breadcrumbs to follow straight into a shallow grave. That said. Royalty means kiss some ass or the Lou comes looking for you and Dick /really/ doesn't want that.

Gibbs beats him to it, "His reach is long and diverse, as are his interests. Maybe he's got some interest down that way, real estate or the like, but he's a big fish. Big fish don't muss with the little people. Get their hands dirty." and he meksa the motions of washign his hands atop his rotuned belly. Dick just nods at his partener, "I'll keep looking into it, and this guy, and maybe we can make something of it, but I wouldn't get your hopes up. If I find anything or if I need to get in touch with you," he grins at Vi-Gabrielle, "how can I reach you that doesn't involve me walking the Zone waving cheese over my head?"

"That might be true, Detective, if Gabrielle were a mutant." Mari murmurs quietly, cradling Gabrielle against her shoulder. If she's a mark, she's a mark, but something tells the spirit changer she doesn't think so. "But I don't believe she is."

Which means something else happened.

"Gabrielle is staying with me, Detective. Your partner has my address and she also has her own phone." There's the gentlest of nudges to get Gabrielle to respond and give the details.

"I think … I would you like to see someone, Gabrielle, if you're willing. See if we can work out more of what happened to you." That's on top of taking another trip or two into the Zone.

"A name would be helpful, Detectives." From there, Vixen and certain Panther can do a lot.

"When we're finished here, I know a lovely deli that serves a gourmet cheese plate, perhaps you could convince T'Challa to join us, Gabrielle." Yes, a whole of plate of cheese to eat.

Gabrielle Doe is pulled from Mari's shelter with some reluctance, shoulders drooping and head down. No tears though. She bobs her head in a nod and pulls out her phone (with it's sparkly, *fabulous* case) and just unlocks it, handing it over for Dick to pull up her number.

Blue eyes rise to meet Dick's, and she tries to return that grin with a smile of her own, but it doesn't work too well. Instead of arguing any more that the woman in the photos isn't her, or that she doesn't remember or any of that, she just meets Dick's eyes and tells him in a voice more subdued than when she came in, "I'm not lying to you." Then she does manage a very smile smile. "And thank you." Because he still went to that trouble. And he's still been nice about all of it, even if there might be a bit of insinuation that she's conning them all.

Letting out a long, gusty sigh, she lays her head on Mari's shoulder and looks at T'Challa with those big, blue, puppy-dog eyes. "Will you have cheese with us? It's really good."

Cats and dogs can get along, right?

"Not generally so late in life though, Detective." T'Challa points out with a smile. "Also, given that some her previous detentions fell at least partly within the registration era, her potential as a carrier for those genetics would have been detected if the medical personnel in question had been doing their jobs. I am not saying one way or the other. I am simply saying that there is a mystery here that is not easily dismissed or explained."

"I can think of few better ways to reach Gabrielle than a good gruyere." The prince grins rather unhelpfully. But then Mari is nudging Gabby to provide details.

"At any rate you have been most helpful and hospitable Detective Grayson. Other than letting the professionals do their work unhindered do let us know if there is any way we might assist New York's finest." Hey, having a high powered fashion designer in the rolodex might come in handy in some way.

"Mari, let the man be." T'Challa chuckles. He knows they can dig around on their own and both have considerable resources. Perks of being rich. "And yes I'd be happy to join you both for lunch." Gabby has a killer puppy dog face. He'd offer to have Dick and Gibbs along but he can see they're working. Well, Dick's working anyway.

"Well, shall we then?" Cats and dogs getting along.

Mass Hysteria, I tell you.

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