2019-11-30 - Someone to Talk to


Blackbird and the Iron Fist have a chance encounter. And discuss therapy.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Sat Nov 30 22:48:47 2019
Location: Chinatown

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Theme Song



Helena had an awkward conversation with Peter earlier in the day. One about secret identities, and life plans, and…all of the things that teenagers generally don't like to talk about. And she could go back to the Triskelion and study, or the gym and train, or home and talk to someone about it, but those are all the sort of healthy coping mechanisms that don't lead to a life of vigilante crime-fighting.

So instead, she geared up and hit the rooftops, in a part of town where she's pretty sure Spider-Man won't be on his rotation around the boroughs and she knows none of the bats will be - Chinatown.

The night market is a bustling place, with a mix of tourists picking up souvenirs and locals picking up practical items or tastes of life back home. Just a few blocks away, though, the colorful lanterns that light the streets are gone, and the unwary can find themselves in a much less friendly warehouse district.

It's there that Blackbird has made her nest. Hood up, mask across the lower part of her face, the gold contacts that hide her eyes set to infrared to watch the streets below despite the darkness, she perches on the edge of a roof. Or rather, lounges, legs dangling over the edge and hands braced at her sides.

It being so late, there's not a lot of people out in this part of Chinatown. The ones that are, tend to be on the unsavory side. So, when a man in his mid twenties dressed more like a college student than anything turns onto the street Helena is currently overlooking, it's a little out of place. He doesn't walk with that slightly furtive gait that criminals tend to when they're about their business. But he also doesn't seem like somebody who'd have any actual business in this area. Hands in the pocket of a light jacket, the blond martial artist moves with an athletes unconscious grace. There's a distant possiblity of her recognizing the majority stockholder of Rand Enterprises, somebody who ahd disappeared for a good decade before reappearing again five or so years back. But he hasn't been in the spotlight much so that's questionable. Plus, he's pretty far away.

That figure doesn't look like trouble, but it does look like…target. Not quite so much to Helena - she can recognize someone who's not as much of a pushover as they look like. But to the small group of men about a block and a half away from her and just around the corner from Danny…

It was really just a routine drug deal. Not even a sale, really. Not direct to consumer, at least. A mid-level supplier and his guards are in the process of selling some product to a lower-level supplier and a couple of his corner-workers, haggling quietly over numbers and quality. "Man, I gotta make a profit too," one of them protests in a low voice. "Look, I'll give you-"

One of the guards taps the mid-level supplier on the shoulder as he hears the sound of footsteps from Danny's approach, and guns are loosened from holsters and waistbands all around. "You call someone?"

From her vantage point, Helena can see the incipient collision of dealers and billionaire. She knows those don't usually end well. Moving quietly, she pulls herself up to her feet and starts to pad along the edge of the rooftops, moving closer.

Danny can hear people talking before he turns the corner. But he does it anyway. When the group of dealers come into view he pauses, considering the armed criminals for a few moments before offering them a calm smile. "Ah. I seem to be interrupting something. Sorry about that." He begins to walk forward, apparently intending on passing by, or through, the group and continueing on his way. "Don't mind me. Just taking a walk." He's not stupid enough to think they're actually going to let him just walk away, of course. But, the closer he can be to them before things go south the better. Still, for an outside observer, it seems like he's just oblivious.

"Yeah, well, you picked the wrong street for a- Seriously, buddy?" The mid-level dealer - apparently the ranking member of this little grouping - watches Danny keep moving forward with a poleaxed expression. "Benny, roadblock," he snaps his fingers at the guard behind his left shoulder who takes a step forward to block the path, cracking his knuckles. "You got a phone, buddy?"

Along the rooftop, Helena moves near-silently, even as she reaches the rooftop above the confrontation and starts to carefully parkour her way down the side of the building, camouflaged behind the fire escape. Six dealers of varying ranks. One Danny Rand of unknown capabilities or sense. Best tactic: stealth. Slowly she reaches for what looks like a gun at her thigh, choosing her target.

Danny stops when the thug moves to block his path, a brow raising slightly. "Hmmm? I do. Did you want to make a call?" He gives him another smile. He really does seem to be clueless. He steps up closer to the man, staring him in the eyes. The cluelessness… seems to be gone. Those bright blue orbs intense as he stares down the enforcer. "Well?" He glances around the group. "You know… you guys really should find somewhere more private for this sort of thing. If you do it in the middle of the street, even in this area, people are eventually going to notice. You know what I mean?"

"Buddy." Benny reaches out to grab the front of Danny's shirt, and that's when it all starts to go down.

From her perch on the side of the building, Helena fires a shot at the enforcer - some sort of taser round, to judge by the sudden blue light that arcs at his shoulder where he's grabbed Danny and the shout of pain that follows.

In the next few moments, there's a rapid, sharp popping sound as several smoke pellets hit the pavement around them, and as the smoke starts to rise up, Helena's shadowed figure lands among them, largely hidden by hood and cape. The mid-level dealer is her first target - stop the source of orders - with a quick strike to the throat before the smoke makes seeing hard for people who aren't used to that sort of thing.

Danny is starting to move when the taser hits Benny. He goes with it, and as the man reacts to the pain of the taser, he quickly jabs him several times with stiffened fingers. The thug goes limp and drops to the ground, then he's stepping back into another dealer coming up behind him, launching an elbow strike into his solar plexus to double him over, then giving him a swift blow to the back of the head. The smoke doesn't seem to slow him down any once it grows thicker, seemingly keeping track of everyobodies movements via sound. He hears a hammer drawing back to one side as one of them pulls a gun and prepares to fire, and he quickly weaves out of the potential line of fire, striking the mans wrist at the last moment to throw off his aim, sending the fired shot into another dealer in a non-vital area, more cries of pain following.

As he strikes the wrist again to numb it and cause the gun to drop, he says aloud, "I don't know who you are. But I appreciate the help. Still. I would have been fine on my own." A leg hooks around the disarmed thugs, and with a quick motion he throws him onto his back hard enough for his head to crack against the pavement and daze him.

"I'm picking up on that," comes a voice from the smoke, the amusement clear in the words despite the fact that they sound…altered somehow. A voice modulator, perhaps, one that adds an odd bit of a purr beneath the words. Helena is likewise unbothered by the smoke, but it has more to do with the infrared built into her hood and her contacts at the moment than an ability to track the attackers otherwise.

The man who took a bullet tries to steady himself by grabbing out at nothing, catching the hem of her cape by chance, and the smoke seems to light up with another actinic flash of white-blue as an electric current runs through the material and into his hand, sending him to the pavement. The leader is down, as is Benny, the poor foll who rushed Danny, and the man who fell victim to friendly fire, leaving just the two corner-workers trying to figure out what's just happened.

One of them rushes the source of the other voices and Helena reaches out to give his shoulder a neat strike, sending him reeling toward Danny. "Your three o'clock," she announces helpfully.

And Danny is picking up on the fact that this person likes to use toys. Tasers, smoke pellets, electrified… clothes? That seems dangerous to her too. Hearing the striking of fist to flesh and then the unsteady footsteps of the thug approaching him, he launches a high rising sideways kick, catching him under the jaw and snapping his teeth together painfully. One or two might break in the process. Luckily he doesn't end up biting off his own tongue. It's enough force to lift him off of his feet, and he ends up collapsing onto the ground in a groaning heap. That leaves just one, and he says, "I'll let you have this one." Then he walks out of the area of smoke, whatever is left of it. "I suppose the smell of that is part of the distraction."

"More a side effect of the chemical reaction that creates them, but sure," Helena replies lightly, disabling the last (and least) of the would-be dealers with an economical motion. He reaches for her and she steps cleanly to the side, grabbing his wrist and turning to twist it behind his back. Before he even knows what's happened, she's grabbed the other wrist and zip-tied them together behind his back, sending him to the pavement with a foot to the back of one knee.

"I'm sure the people who came up with them weren't concerned enough with the smell to keep experimenting once they found something that worked," she muses, half to herself. The smoke is settling just then, and she turns to look after him, curious. "Priorities, you know."

Danny considers the various criminals laying on the ground around them. "I suppose that's true." Then he focuses on the costumed superheroine, and offers her a brief bow and a friendly smile. "It's nice to meet you. My name is Danny. I imagine you have a name like Darklurker or Shadowsneak or something like that?" He still looks like a pretty normal guy. Though he just showed that's not so. Still, nothing actually superhuman has been exhibited so far. There's a lot of martial artists in the world.

"Wow, your lack of faith in my naming capabilities is disturbing." There's that note of amusement again as Helena takes a moment to get the downed criminals securely zip-tied in practiced motions. "Those were totally not on the radar, though. Shadowsneak's got potential." She looks back up as the last zip is tied, the corners of her eyes crinkling with a smile behind the mask that hides the lower part of her face, giving away a grin.

"Blackbird," she offers, stepping over to offer a gauntleted hand. With the smoke gone, more of the details of the costume are visible. There's armor in there, though it's light as it can be made, allowing for flexibility to balance out the strength. An escrima stick on each hip, along with whatever fired that taser round. A grappling gun. It looks like there's something built into the fingers of the gauntlets too.

He laughs at that. "You're free to use it if you want, Blackbird." He considers the outfit she's wearing, and the zipt-tieing of the criminals. "I take it you do this for a living, then?" His clothe are… normal. No hidden surprises or anything in them. He takes her hand, shaking it firmly. He has a strong grip, as you might expect. "I didn't think many of you costumed sorts spent time in Chinatown. I'm kind of surprised to run into you. Did something in particular draw you here?" Danny gestures at the criminals. "These guys don't seem like big enough fish to have lured you to this particular pond."

"It's more like a hobby?" Blackbird glances back toward the downed criminals, lifting one shoulder in a light shrug. "The pay's not great, you know. Although I guess I could go into the bounty hunting business if I really wanted to do it for a living," she muses. "Boba Fett it up." Beneath all the armor and the cape, there's not really much to her. She's slightly built, despite her height. Young? It's hard to tell, really.

"True confession, I was actually avoiding most of the other caped sorts," she admits. "The bats have Staten Island on lockdown and I happen to know that this is off the Spiders' rotation tonight, so. I figured it would be a relatively easy night. Not quite this easy though." Her head tilts as she considers him, those golden eyes seeming to glow in the shadow of the hood. "Where'd you learn to fight like that?"

The response makes him give her a curious look. "Seems pretty dangerous for a hobby. You in it for the thrills or something?" He's not the biggest of people himself. Average at best, though what's there is well-defined. He tilts his head to the side. "Avoiding the capes? Hmm. How do YOU know where the Spiders are going to be tonight?" He sounds simply curious. At the question, he raises and drops one shoulder. "Me? I was taken in by the masters of a mystical hidden city of martial artists and trained to be a living weapon." A pause. "That, or I've had a lot of private tutors. What about yourself? You seem reasonably well trained." It might say something that he considers a person personally trained by the bat 'reasonably' well-trained.

"Because I'm looped in on their comms," Blackbird answers easily, that hint of a smile in her eyes again. "We've worked together on some things. Mystical hidden city," she echoes. "Is that the place over on 43rd?"

Reaching up, she draws down the mask across the lower half of her face, revealing soft, dusky features and a wry smile, though Danny may be able to sense that there's something about those features that doesn't quite line up with the life beneath them. "I'm pretty sure if I only count as reasonably well-trained, I'm not allowed to say who trained me at the risk of shaming them," she chuckles.

His head tilts again as Danny considers the features of the heroine. "Hmm. I was under the impression you costumed types aren't supposed to reveal who you are that easily. What if I'm a criminal that's just trying to lure you into a trap?" He smiles as he says that. It's hard to say what he really thinks about this whole situation. His expression is very… calm. He crosses his arms over his chest. "Heh. Well. Better than most people I've run into, at least? You seem on the young side, so I'm sure you'll improve with time. Hmmm. You don't really look like a spider. Which makes me more curious what your relationship is with them. And why you're avoiding the Bats as well. Or is it all costumed people?"

"Who says you can find me with a face?" Helena arches a brow, stepping over to the side of the alley and lightly skipping up a wall to perch on the top of a dumpster. "Do you know how many people live in this city? As long as we don't frequent the same Starbucks, I'm probably good." It also helps that it's a holomask and not her real face, but she's going to keep that much to herself for now.

"Spiders and Bats mostly," she answers, smile crooked. "Kind of close with both and not really feeling like having personal conversations about feelings, so avoiding people who actually know me seemed like a solid plan. And hey, you're not costumed," she points out. "So you're currently exempt. The K and R insurance people must love you."

Leaning back against a car, Danny replies, "I wasn't planning on trying, really. Just commenting. I'll have to keep an eye out for anybody that moves like you the next time I visit a Starbucks, I guess." And if he really did identify her simply by movement… that might actually work. But the chances of running into him in civillian garb actually are pretty small. Barring plot device. "I've never personally run into either branch of the creepy crawly crew. It sounds like they do good work, though." He studies her currently golden eyes. "Avoiding talks about feelings… that may not be the wisest of choices. A troubled soul can lead to a troubled body. You need to keep both in balance to operate properly."

"You're not wrong," Helena grimaces. "But, you know. A good therapist who deals in capes and secret identities is hard to find. I bet that's why Zorro was always going to confession. That and the whole Spanish Catholic thing." She tucks one leg up beneath herself, still watching him. All of the light talk aside, she's sharp. Too sharp for anything to seem entirely accidental, or to let anything just pass her by.

"Spiders are good people," she offers. "Usually good for help if you run into anything bigger than you can punch. Weird magic things. Powered sorts. Bats aren't usually much for sharing, though. More likely to play the long game, focus on investigation over the nightly fight. Kind of territorial, though." The smile flickers again, a hint of mischief in her eyes. "And competitive."

Danny nods his head. "I imagine it would be. Still. You should talk to somebody about whatever it is that's bothering you." He's watching her as well, his eyes bright but partially lidded. "Hmm. I'll have to keep that in mind. If I ever run into something I can't handle on my own. So far, that hasn't been an issue. And I don't have any spiders phone numbers, so I don't know how I'd ask one for help if I wanted to anyway. And… I'll also keep that in mind about the bats, if I ever run into one. I don't have anything to prove personally." He looks over at the various criminals still sprawled on the ground. "I hope we run into each other again sometime, Blackbird. But I suppose one of us should contact the police to come pick these guys up. Probably best I'm not here when they arrive. Like you said, no mask."

"Make enough noise and a spider will show up," Helena chuckles, pushing up to a standing position and pulling the half mask back up over the lower half of her face. "I've got the message to the cops loaded and ready to go, not to worry. Nice to meet you, Danny. Give me a call if you run into something on purpose some time," she adds, reaching into a pouch at her belt to pull out a tiny device of some sort and toss it over to him. It mostly looks like…a button.

Danny catches the button, studying it curiously. "I'll do that, Blackbird. You take care of yourself. Try not to bite off more than you can chew." He smiles over at her. "And find somebody to talk to." He slips it into a pocket, then raises a hand and turns to start up the street again.

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