A Graveyard Story
Roleplaying Log: A Graveyard Story
Participants
IC Details
Synopsis:

A shadow, a vigilante, and a ghost cross paths in a cemetery.

Other Characters Referenced:
IC Date: September 29, 2019
IC Location: Gotham City Cemetery, Old Gotham, Gotham City
OOC Notes & Details
Posted On: 30 Sep 2019 18:50
Rating & Warnings:
NPC & GM Credits:
Associated Plots

Two gunshots, only one hits this time. Ombra counts herself fortunate it's not in a leg this time. Just forearm, because the shooter is too nervous to get a clean shot off. She runs, leaving a blood trail as she goes, hiding behind cover because bullets really hurt. One would expect her to become discouraged after the first couple of times but it's really hard for her to just keep her head down, so to speak. She stumbles when she reaches the semi-sanctuary, unaware that her attacker has notified police of the menacing shadowy phantom and has given up pursuit personally. It entered the cemetery after all! You do not chase phantoms into a cemetery. That's just foolish.
Ombra stumbles again, falling face-first onto the grassy ground, curling up there, measuring her success in getting away by the lack of being shot more.
Safety in the cemetery, as very few people are heard to say.


Gunshots.

Thankfully, Nightwing was nearby on his nightly patrol when the loud noise rings throughout the immediate area. He narrows his eyes, and he gets on the move, performing acrobatic maneuvers along with parkour to travel between buildings with the occasional use of a grappling hook.

He comes upon the cemetery where Ombra hides, but he can't see her. So instead he's looking for the shooter. Take down the shooter, chances are the victim will reveal themselves once the danger has passed or when the danger is gone.

So he leaps off of the rooftop and lands silently on the ground, like the ninja that he is. And he looks.

He searches. He hunts.


Why wouldn't one be safe in a cemetery? It's peaceful, it's solitary, and unless people were paying departed loved ones a visit, the only beings dwelling here are six feet under.

At least to the human eye.

For the specifically sensitive, cemeteries can be anything but empty, although usually any lingering ghosts preferred to keep to themselves unless disturbed, the cries of the remorseful masked by an errant breeze or a hooting owl. It's no place for the living, especially late in the night. People had such strange superstitions about graveyards, but perhaps in all fairness, completely warranted.

The figure who passes through the cold headstones and the ancient carved statues that marked the final resting places of some of Gotham's lost makes no sound nor disturbs the sparse patches of grass that cover the ground. He's dressed from head to toe in white, the style of his attire like someone just come from an old-fashioned costume party from the tall hat to the tailed jacket and cravat, and the flowing cape. He's also slightly transparent, and has no visible head whatsoever, a monocle balanced in the air in front of where one can only assume his right eye would be, the top hat crowning the space above that.

The sound of gunshots are nothing unusual, not in this violent city. Nor is, sadly, one's attempt to take refuge in this place. It's a sad cycle, and as he's passing through, the Gentleman Ghost keeps an eye out for whatever has ensued, if only idly. The business of the living is usually not something he meddles too often in.


A familiar posture is soon taken up by Ombra, laying flat on her back, arms and legs spread out like she's making a snow angel, gazing at the sky, the cloud cover and light pollution that conceals the stars. Something catches her eye, and that something is moving… her head tilts back slightly to get a view, her mind wandering as the outer wear strikes her as unusual, but in a way that she has no understanding of at first. Upside down, it's harder to register what she is seeing exactly.
Thus the shadow that is Ombra sits upright with some effort, using her left arm rather than both, turning bodily to one knee as the intense pain in her forearm subsides. It hangs loosely there. She lifts the good arm to make a wave happen, and her body language, or the shape of her body's posture, indicates wariness but not fear.


Nightwing kneels down and he notices the blood trail. Curious and curiouser. Victim alive, on the move. Aggravator did not chase. Nightwing stands up then, but not too tall. Just enough that he can peek over the grass and the occasional gravestone. Eventually, Nightwing follows the blood to what looks like a feminine-looking shadow.

"Hey."

Nightwing says, in his vigilante armor, domino mask, and all. He kneels down. "Can I see the wound? I might be able to help." He offers the shadowy woman his gloved hand, after all, he needs to make sure she'll live. But she is right, its lucky she didn't get hit in the leg.


Usually he's the one being stared at. It's not too often that Craddock does the staring, but when shadows move and what's more, bear some sort of solid form, that's something he doesn't too often come across. Curiouser indeed.

It might be funny that even the Ghost is wary, but then he's had dealings with shadows of a sort before, and those previous encounters were none too friendly. Those shadows never card to wave in some form of greeting, and perhaps it's only for this that he allows himself a closer look.

"What's this..?" he begins, but says nothing farther. The Gentleman Ghost stops short at the sound of another, and this being is more familiar, at least by way of attire, and even if one isn't exclusively introduced, those of the Bat family seemed to have an identifying trend when it came to style. He stands a white shadow, choosing to be unobtrusive as Nightwing at least seems intent on offering his assistance to what he makes out of the shadowy humanoid form. A shadow that can bleed. Perhaps there's more to her than she appears after all.


The subtle changes to that which Ombra has come into contact with may be noticed. The grass blades that touch her, they become as silhouettes. Easy to overlook from any distance but up close, much easier to spot. The shadow that is Ombra nearly topples over when Nightwing comes into view, fortunately tilting to her left and catching herself rather than having to make that journey of uprightfulness from scratch again. She positions her legs to be more stable as a surface, as it seems the one she was waving to has not decided to draw a firearm or engage in some similarly hostile reaction. Her head turns to take in both, and her gaze seems to stare as Nighting speaks, at him. He looks friendly. Asking … something.
Once steadily upright, Ombra moves her left hand in sign, making a phrase out of three words that do not belong together and would only serve to make someone who comprehends those words inquire as to whether she's feeling okay. She offers her arm up anyway, allowing it to be taken, even if the result might be more pain when the kindly seeming man discovers what happens on contact. It's a hesitant movement.


Dick doesn't quite notice Gentleman Ghost, because he's not looking for him! Kinda helps with the whole….'ghost' part of the whole thing, wouldn't you say? But Dick keeps his attention firmly on Ombra as she looks upon him. He startled her, and he feels oddly like Batman, because many of his foes do that whole 'chuck norris joke' thing but replaces Chuck Norris with Batman. Yeah, its weird, isn't it?

But as she settles herself upright, Nightwing notices the ground and grass around her. Like Silhouettes. Maybe NOT quite safe to touch just in case. If thats what happens to Inorganic….so when she juts her arm out anyway, Nightwing holds up a finger. "Touching is probably a bad idea." he points at the grass she seems to have 'infected' with shadow.

So he stands up and he ponders. "Uhm…ah." he goes and grabs a shovel, holding the handle out for her to grab. "Much safer for the both of us." Yes, this defers to the 'wouldn't touch with a twenty-foot pole' that can be mistaken for insult, but honestly, Nightwing is just trying to play it safe WHILE helping at the same time.


The Ghost chooses to play the part of a silent observer. Since Nightwing hasn't noticed him, he decides to keep things that way so long as it lasts. He's heard that those affiliated with the Bats were well-informed of things, especially when it came to criminals although at the same time Craddock is confident that the things he's committed thus far in this day and age remain a mystery if only because ghosts do not come up on surveillance cameras.

The monocle turns slightly, the only indication that he continues to watch the injured shadow. His hat tilts in curiosity as she makes no response to Nightwing's inquiries. He notes the strange tinge of the grass beside her, a frown gracing his invisible face. How interesting. How strange…

As Nightwing offers the digging implement to her in assistance, the Ghost continues to watch, to see what happens, if anything more will help to unravel the mystery of this shadowy girl.


Relief, or disheartened? Ombra has difficulty telling which she should feel as the kindly-seeming man recoils (her perspective) and holds up a finger to… scold? Pause! It's a waitasecond gesture. That's less disheartening. Then a shovel is retrieved. Anticipation of what one might do with a shovel makes her wince, shrinking slightly in posture, but it's quickly resolved as not hostility because nothing he does with the shovel is threatening, Offering handle first is really the least threatening thing you can do with a shovel after all. Opportunity for demonstration! Ombra finds these stimulating both for herself and the observers.
One silhouetted hand rests upon the shovel's handle, and the entirety of the shovel becomes a shovel-shadow, solid and identical in weight, just difficult to make out details because all one can see is the outline. When Ombra removes her hand from it, the shovel returns to its much more typical shovel-looking state. She pushes herself up to stand with the one arm, turning her gaze to the odd white clothing, unable to properly take her mind from what she can only assume is someone who has something uniquely pecular about them as she does.


Getting Ombra back to her feet, Nightwing is NOT startled to find that his initial theory was absolutely correct since the entire shovel seemed to turn transparent. She stole the silhouette from it, or rather, turned it into a silhouette? Shadow-powers are really confusing. But Nightwing drops the shovel when Ombra is back up and on her feet. He looks her over for any wounds. "You got shot, didn't you? Where?" He wants her to point to it or at least gesture. He has a feeling she's either way too scared to talk or she can't talk altogether.

Its then that he notices Gentleman Ghost and Nightwing lifts one hand to one of his Escrima Sticks, not knowing that it probably won't do much to Ghost. "Uh….Hi."


So the girl makes things as shadowy as herself. That's interesting.

Ah, noticed. Well, it was only inevitable. The Ghost straightens a touch, lifting a gloved hand from the head of the cane he'd had both folded upon so that he can doff his hat in greeting to both. His shoulders shift slightly in half a chuckle as the man moves in preparation to draw his weapon.

"Hello," he offers back. "Now, no need for that. T'would do you little good anyway. Curiosity's what's drawn me, p'rhaps the same as you." His hat nods in indication of the silent shadow Nightwing had come to aid.


The shadow-girl does not show wounds, at least not to simple visual inspection. She just shows outline, and attentiveness when the kindly man speaks again, and she can make enough of what he says out to respond. Physically. Her right arm lifts out to the side, and her left moves so her hand cna gesture toward the spot on the forearm.
The shovel, when dropped, before it left Ombra's touch, made no sound when the metal portion landed. Not a bump, not a scrape, nothing. She picks the shovel up again from where it rests in its normal shovelly state, and her touch makes it change again, as one might have expected, bringing it back to where it was and placing it with some force there, again without a sound, releasing it to be once again a happy normal shovel. She cautiously approaches now that a bit of understanding is had.
She hasn't left any blood drippings since Nightwing arrived.


Nightwing lowers his hand from his escrima stick. What the hell is with this town and ghosts, spirits, shadows, or devils? Either way, Nightwing keeps his attention on Gentleman Ghost, his eyes then shifting over to Ombra as she seems to no longer be bleeding.

Wait, why didn't the shovel make a sound?

Never mind that right now. He looks at her forearm when she points at it, apparently trusting her to not turn him into a soundless, noise-less thing. Of course, he doesn't know the extent or limit of her powers. He seems to ponder for a moment. "Ah…huh. Right, well, since you're well and good. I-" He puts two fingers up to his ear and he sighs.

"Sorry, duty calls. I uh…" he looks between the two. "Play nice?" Then he pulls out a grappling hook and zips away!


The movement from the shadow girl draws his eye again, the monocle and hat lifting but slightly with the odd revelation that whatever her abilities consist of apparently affect more than simply appearance. Craddock glances back towards Nightwing, shrugging. He's never seen anything like it, and perhaps for what he is, that's saying something.

A delicate snort in amusement is the only response given as Nightwing excuses himself and vanishes into the night, typical of Gotham-brand vigilantes, it seems. The Ghost turns back towards Ombra, and finally he moves from where he stands, taking a step or two closer and not one more. People do behave rather varyingly when it comes to encounters with the undead.

"You were injured, weren't you?" he asks, unaware of how potentially confounding communication is going to be with this one.


The shadow of a girl breathes a visible sigh as the kindly man withdraws and abruptly changes location. She can only guess the touch to his ear was related. Her head, and then body turn to get another much better look at the more supernatural of the encounters she has had, watching with more awe and wonder, and no fright. Turning profile toward the mysterious being, so that more details about her expression and even her lips can be made out, even if with some difficulty, she moves her left hand up to cover the mouth for a moment, resting her hand over it meaningfully. Her head turns, and the same hand can be seen first pointing at then covering her ear. Or what is probably her ear. The outline of her hair is mostly in the way of being able to discern that definitively. Then she gets an idea.
She moves to gravestones, picking up a stick from the ground, and uses it to point at letters etched in the stone, circling them, to spell. It's a bit of a process, and midway through she has to pick up a new stick because the first stick seems to become absorbed by her within a minute or so. She thankfully only needs to circle letters to form a few words. 'my' and 'name' and 'ombra'. She drops the second stick to the side of the grave, respectful enough not to litter.


The blood from earlier still spatters the ground a ways off. He can piece together the happenings, but it still doesn't quite explain what this girl is. A metahuman of sorts? That seems to be most fitting, for the Ghost doesn't detect that extraplanar vibe that he would of those like him, and no sense of magic either.

Observing her movements he can tell that she's attempting to convey something. Mute? Deaf? Well, that is frustrating. And here she wouldn't even be able to see his lips to read them, were she able to. His shoulders sag just a bit with the movement of a sigh, but he is again attentive as the shadow picks up a stick and begins to use a nearby headstone as her own ouija board.

"Ombra…" Fitting, he thinks, nodding at her to signal that he'd understood. Scanning the graves himself, he moves towards one that catches his eye, tapping with the end of his cane at the first name there: Jim. His first name is common enough, at least. In consideration he turns to look thoughtfully towards her again before he offers a gloved hand. The nights are cooler as befitting what one would expect of a proper autumn, but the difference for the chill that surrounds him is palpable. Does she breathe? The air would mist with each puff if she did. And if she did try to take his hand she'd find it cold but nothing tangible to grasp.


Her turn to be attentive as the stones are used as an impromptu means of communicating. A means that won't disappear very quickly at that. Since the tapping does not get followed by more taps, she deduces the intended meaning with relative ease. Then comes the moment of worry. She can't read Jim with the same sort of ease she can read most people. Their facial expression. She is very attentive thus, to the body language.
It seems that Ombra does draw breath, but she is not a source of warmth. She adopts the temperature of her surroundings. She looks a little sorrowful when her hand passes through the one proffered, judging by the slight slump of her shoulders, the tilting of her head forward. But the cane… it looked like it stopped abruptly. Sorrow gives way to puzzled. She goes to retrieve the shovel again, carrying it upon her hands rather than grasping. Then she offers it as though presenting a sword.


There's a slight shift that might register as surprise from the ghostly gentleman as he finds his hand passing easily through hers, and the fingers curl in a brief clench of a frustrated fist, a reminder of the past, of what he is. He can pretend all he likes but he knows this world is one he's only got one foot in, so to speak.

The thought of an apology is quickly dismissed; what good would it do if the lass couldn't hear it? Judging from her posture he can only guess that she's disappointed, which he supposes is at least an improvement from panic and screaming. And being shot at, that really is rather annoying. However unlike whatever had happened to poor Ombra earlier, bullets do little to an incorporeal form.

It's when she moves for the forgotten shovel again that Craddock lifts his head again. An experiment, he assumes, and obligingly he reaches out to take hold of the shovel, for indeed he can interact with such things. How else can he make off with precious gems and trinkets, little use as he has for them?


Puzzled is what Ombra remains, but now with no sorrow to precede it. When Jim touches the shovel, nothing weird happens to him. The effect Ombra has only reaches that which she touches, and not that which touches what she touches. Its complete silence is less noticeable. As she stops being in contact, the shovel returns to its shovel-like appearance, but Ombra is not done with her experiment.
She steps closer, moving her hand to where it would be in contact with that of Jim's on the shovel, unsure exactly what to expect, but if this girl was afraid of anything she had seen thusfar about the ghost, it's very well hidden. No hesitation now whatsoever. She is bold, enthusiastic, and curious.
Seemingly from behind her, a silhouette-like housecat emerges, a shadow of one of the many that have taken up residence in a local crypt. Ombra crouches to run her hand along its side, before it nears the ghostly form, sitting and gazing upward right at the feet.


Craddock is patient. Given how long he's been around and watched the world around him change, how can he not be? He's also curious to see what Ombra discovers as he eyes the shovel and its transformation.

It's fascinating in some odd way, although he can imagine that her ability is perhaps just as damnable as his own existence. Swallowing things in shadow? Muting sound? He watches as the shovel beneath his grasp is sapped into darkness, the darker shaft of the handle and the girl's hand making his own transparency more obvious.

His eyes track the movement he detects behind her, hat and monocle angling slightly with the tilt of his head. Just a cat… Or is it? There's something else about it, something… in-between, but not in the way he knows. He looks down at the shadowy feline as Ombra moves to interact with it, and before he sets the shovel down he gives its metal head a flick before the shadow fades from it.

Gracefully he lowers himself to a knee, resting an arm over the other as he peers at the cat and holds out a hand once again.


The cat-shadow leans into the proffered hand and nudges, brushes against it, and in the very feline manner uses it to rub along its back with tail held high. Ombra herself seems thrilled by the result, even if she cannot herself be touched by the being she is starting to suspect is not a mutant, she can vicariously feel, and it delights her. She's bouncing a little in place on her heels, her hands clasped together. She ignores the pain signal that happens as a result of making use of her right hand.
The cat, one might be surprised or unsurprised to discover, feels like it is purring, though like Ombra, it produces no sound.


Whatever ordeal the girl had gone through, it seems she's forgotten about it. Craddock supposes that's good enough as any sort of help or reassurance he could have tried to offer. He wouldn't have been much by way of assistance if she'd been bleeding out. Seeing her delight as he manages to actually make contact with the shadow-cat, he can't help but smile a little himself.

Of course he has many questions, but he has no way of communicating them and imagines it would be just as difficult for Ombra to do likewise unless she could write them out. To the cat, he gives a proper scratching on its head. One would think as a Ghost he'd seen stranger things. As he considers his recent activities he decides that such still holds true. He does still have some unusual specimens to be analyzed, but he has yet to find someone who might be able to do so. Someone of mystical or otherworldly knowledge.

With one last pat to the shadow creature, he levels himself to his feet again, making a show of straightening his lapels and his cape. "You won't understand me, but all the same, I'm glad your injuries don't seem severe. I should take leave now, so per'aps you should be on your way as well. This be hardly a place for anyone still on this side of the veil."

Craddock gestures as best he can to make it clear that he's excusing himself. Lastly he takes a step back, once again removing his hat as he gives her a sweeping bow. Straightening, he replaces his hat and turns, his mantle floating behind him. "Take care, Ombra. There are darker things than shadows in this world."


Ombra senses the farewell coming. She dreads it, but it's a sight better than the typical experience she has with parting persons. Namely the screaming and the panic and the running and sometimes the bullets. Bullets are her least favourite variation on the abrupt departure. She gives what she can in the parting, which is a bow from the waist. Even the tiny sliver of time was enough to lift her spirits, so to speak. The cat moves back to her, and vanishes seemingly into her leg.


A girl made of shadow who spread her curse by contact and could conjure up creatures of the same. Craddock could not say he envied her position, but on some level he felt able to sympathize. Perhaps their paths would cross again. For as large as the world was and how crowded cities brimmed, he's found it not at all an impossible thing.

A final wave over his shoulder and he simply fades into the night, a step from one plane into the next.

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