The Boat Log
Roleplaying Log: The Boat Log
Participants
IC Details
Synopsis:

Harley takes Owen on a date fishing, they decide to up the ante.

Other Characters Referenced:
IC Date: December 16, 2018
IC Location:
OOC Notes & Details
Posted On: 17 Dec 2018 02:59
Rating & Warnings:
NPC & GM Credits: Amanda Waller
Associated Plots

Things haven't always been the cheeriest. When in town, poor Owen has been subjected to some of the more erratic highs and lows that have made Harley Quinn a legend in Gotham. She's cut a swath across the Narrows, unable to stay still in any one place for long.

But Harley has plans for tonight, to try to make up for it, and the blonde waits for her boy toy to show up at the latest in a string of dive apartments that she's been crashing at. She waits on the crumbling front steps, in a puffy white coat paired with booty shorts and knee-high socks. Because why not?

The sight of her motorcycle out front might be a bit disconcerting, a pair of fishing rods and a large net strapped haphazardly to the side of it.

And if he shows - when he shows - she hands him a handkerchief to wear for the ride… wherever they're going with nothing in the way of explanation save a maniacal 'Trust meeeeee' and giggles. Because blindfolds and surprises are fun, right?

As per his usual tardiness, Owen keeps Harley waiting. But he has a good excuse this time! And it's not like all the other times wherein he swore that he good excuse and did not in fact have one. No, this time Owen shows up looking worse for the wear with a busted up face that has obviously been hastily cleaned up. A variety of bandaids and butterfly closures adorn his colorfully decorated face, painted in varying shades of bruise and blood.

Owen sees the motorcycle a moment before he sees Harley and a look of concern flashes across his face. But then she's handing him a handkerchief and asking him to trust him. He shrugs and says, "Alright. Lead on." He first hops on the back of the bike and then gets to tying the bandana over his eyes.

Harley doesn't immediately comment on Owen's busted up face, but there is a telltale glint to her perusal when he arrives. They get banged up in their line of work. They get banged up a lot. And there's a part of her that very much wants to ask about it, but refrains.

Instead, she just leans harder into the act of 'everything's alright'. Her face cracks into a wide grin that seems just as much a force of will and nature as ever, and she waits for him to load up. Waits for him to set the discount store cotton across his field of vision. Waits for him to get ahold of wherever he wants to hold, her teeth bared like a thing feral as she looks over her shoulder.

And then she's off! She's not as hard on the turns or the gas pedal as she might be another night, perhaps in deference to Owen - compromised by both blinder and injury. Perhaps in deference to the tackle box that is precariously tethered on with a bungee cord. The important thing is that they eventually arrive in the place where the air smells of rotted garbage, chemicals, and salt spray. The motorcycle quiets to a manageable rumble as she backs it into a back alley. And then the engine shuts off all together.

"This is gonna be great," she tells Owen brightly as she stares up at the enormous crane that casts it shadow overhead in the light of the streetlamp that have just started to come on, although she waits for him to get of the bike first. The wind cuts bitterly down, sending the heavy hook into the barest of sways.

At least Owen's mostly dressed for the weather in jeans, a couple layers and his leather jacket. His hat and scarf are pulled tight which help with the wind whipping by on the bike ride. He's not exactly itching to get into why he's so mangled tonight and frankly is more than happy to let Harley sweep him away on some whacky adventure. Of course when the smells hit his nose he starts to second guess that, especially in light of the 'fishing gear' packed on the bike. And by the time they stop the look of concern is etched into his features around the blindfold.

He swings off the bike and asks, "Can I take this off? Or .. what are the rules?" His usual mischievous smirk returns when he asks after the rules. Because all games have rules. Especially the games that these two play, it's just some are unspoken and others are explicit.

"Oh! Yeah. Take it off if ya want. I'll take the rest off ya later, ha!" Running her fingers roughly through her pigtails and then pulling them taut again, Quinn begins explaining. "We're goin' fishin'," she tells him. "Buuuuuut," she sings out, eyes closing as she turns her face up towards the clouding night with her arms spreading wide. "Since it's Gotham, we make new rules, right? First person to pull out three pieces of junk? They foot the bill fer the next date night. First person to pull out a normal lookin' fish? Gets to pick the next date night. And the first person to pull out a mutant something… has to kiss it to see if they get a cursed fairytale personage fer their trouble, and there'll be photographic evidence."

Turning her head, she tucks her hands under her chin and puckers her glossy lips demonstratively. "Easy peasy," she says, words mangled by her refusal to let her kissy face go.

Pulling off the bandana, Owen straightens it out and then at her crack about pulling the rest off later. He snaps the handkerchief in her direction like a small whip. He raises an eyebrow at the activity but then his face breaks into a wide grin as she explains the rules.

"Wait. Can we blow up the fish? I don't.. " Owen has no idea how to actually fish like a regular person. He looks back at the fishing gear and then double takes at the kissing the mutant rule. "Wait, what? That's a legit possibility!" But of course he's not saying no. No, he's already pulling out gear and trying to figure out what the heck you do with it.

But he also can't resist giving her a kiss on her puckered lips, saying "Alright. But I don't count as yer mutant… I'm a meta. It's different. And yer going down Quinn… maybe."

As she's whipped with the piece of cotton, Harley makes a show of curling up defensively against it and laughs boisterously. Whether Owen Mercer's genetics qualify him as mutant or prince? Harley really doesn't comment either way. She just smiles for the pleasure of the affection, bats her eyelashes coquettishly, and the dismounts the bike.

She unhooks the tackle box, then she pulls a brown paper bag and a thermos out of the motorcycle's saddlebag. "Yer welcome ta try, Mercer, but I bet you don't even know what bait the spare tires like best."

Considering Owen has already managed to hook himself with the fishing hook, it's clear that this is going to be a struggle. He however continues to talk a big game. "I happen to know for a fact that yer going down. I'm a natural." A bleeding natural from the looks of it, as he sticks his thumb into his mouth. He does manage to get at least somethign resembling actual bait onto the hook after a bit though and makes his way to the edge of the pier. But then the crane swinging in the wind keeps catching his eye.

"Are there bonus points for size of the catch, by any chance?"

Quinn looks up from where she's hurriedly shuffling around in the saddlebag, and then fills her arms awkwardly full of all the other things she needs to grind Owen's victory into ash. She whines as her tennis shoe hits a puddle, splashing dirty water up onto her mostly white sock.

As the Son of Boomerang asks his fateful question, the blonde allows her wide, pale gaze to follow his upwards. And then her smile slowly stretches into an evil grin. She doesn't mind being flexible on the plans she's made, so long as the new plans are more trouble. "I'll give 'em, yeah! …What would you wanna cash 'em in fer, though?"

Having tried casting twice and it going nowhere, Owen takes a minute to try and fiddle with the reel. He figures out some things and is able to at least cast into the horrific smelling and looking water. Seeing that she has figured out what he's thinking (as if he were in anyway a complicated man) Owen pretends to think about it.

"Weeeell. I did just get these from a .. from Baileys." Owen still forgets that Emery and Harley know each other sometimes. And just wait until Harley finds out Bart's his half-brother. But regardless, he's pulling out the same black and red fuzzy handcuffs from his pocket. "I figure largest catch gets to pick?"

Harley is settling down on the pier, and she seems to be much more comfortable with this whole process. Seeming to not even notice the muck and splinter possibilities, she sits herself crosslegged at the very edge of the pier and lets her bare knees hover over the seemingly black water that glitters under the light of the pier's lighting.

Beside her, she carefully lays out half a dozen jelly doughnuts, only to lift one and take a vicious bite out of it before setting it back down on the crinkled brown paper.

As the handcuffs emerge, the clown (who looks less clownlike than she often does) lets her eyes turn in their direction. And then she starts cackling. "Ya really think ya can beat me? I don't think even a crane is gonna help ya." Pulling off a piece of the donut, the harlequin slides the sugar-crusted pastry onto the hook. "I've got the stuff that sea monsters go nuts fer."

Considering Owen has already exhausted his patience for actual fishing in the three minutes he's been doing it, it's no surprise that he starts heading for the crane. Once he's in the the cockpit, it takes only a few minutes to hotwire the thing. Thankfully it turns out that operating a crane is actually pretty intuitive. He swings the boom far enough out to not soak Harley when dropping the hook deep into the harbor.

"Bombs away!!" Owen yells with gusto from the controls. Pulling the hook back up, Owen is disappointing to see that nothing of real consequence comes up. He grumbles and shuts the thing down, lighting a cigarette as he makes his way back to where Harley's fishing. He grabs a donut, and lays down on the pier next to her.

"Where on earth did you learn to fish?"

Whether or not there is water splashed, Harley reflexively curls in on herself, squeezes her eyes tightly shut, and pulls her rod in as the hook descends. She cracks one eye open into a cautious slit as the sound stops briefly and then watches as the hook comes back up.

When all is said and done, and she stays dry despite the antic, she slowly unfolds and relaxes. She waits with an unending patience for Mercer to return, her head and butterfly-folded knees bobbing to a tune that's stuck in her head. And he does, eventually, return.

Where did she learn to fish? The question draws Harley's lips into an uneven quirk. "Eh," she tells him, immediately dismissive as she waves a hand. "It's not really important." Code for either she doesn't want to say, or she doesn't think he wants to hear. The reality is that it's probably a little of both. "What's important is that I do, an' this ain't a competition ya can cheat yer way through. Speed ain't gonna help ya. Fishin'? Is all about delayed gratification." Which isn't always Harley's strong suit except for in certain waves of mood, but today she can manage just enough patience to maybe out-patience Owen Mercer.

Maybe.

She tucks the rod's handle in the crook of a knee, and then digs her hands into her pocket for the pack of grape gum that she's got hidden inside. Unwrapping a piece, she shoves it inside and starts loudly chomping on it. Her back straightens as she takes the rod back in hand, suddenly very erect as she says in her very best academia voice: "He that can have patience can have what he will." A pause, and then she shrinks back down into a hunch over the reel, her voice settling back into her Brooklyn-thick drawl. "Or somethin'."

She waits another beat, and then pulls up the empty hook. Apparently her fried donuts just dissolve in the water. The bait of sea monsters has no staying power. As she hooks on another red-stained morsel and lowers it, she turns her head and looks at him. "Maybe ya'd have had more luck if ya used real bombs?"

Laying down with his head in her lap, munching on the jelly donut, Owen doesn't really seem to concerned with losing all of the sudden. Maybe it's because he has a donut and gets to lay in her lap? Maybe it's because he /really/ lacks the patience to wait for something like fishing. But then she's brushing off his question. And a conflicted looks crosses his face. She's done all this to make it a fun night, an adventure for the two of them. And he wants that. But there's that stupid, weird growing sense that maybe he wants something more? Bah. Stupid more. She's deflecting because she doesn't want to talk about it. Owen knows this and he would do the same thing. The last thing he wants to do is talk about anything in his past.

And then he has something of a revelation.

He's Captain Boomerang. She's Harley Quinn.

No. It's more than that. It's the fact that he identifies as that because of all the shit that he went through and wanted so badly to leave behind. He embraced the stupid boomerang gimmick. His dipshit worthless ass father. Everything. Because it meant something to latch on to, and anything had to be better than what he was living.

And just like that, he finally gets it. The thing that they fought about that had been bothering him since his initial run in with the Joker. He has his inept father. She has the Joker. He's still flinging boomerangs. She's still dressing like a clown. Somehow the jelly donut has made all this clear. Wait? Is it laced with something? Did she slip psychotropic drugs in the donuts? That'd be kind of awesome… I mean bad for his sobriety but still. What was he thinking about again? Is this why people fish, for deep and meaningful thoughts on life and stuff..?

/…used real bombs?/

Owen sits bolt upright and exclaims "Oh hell yes! And why are we not shooting giant harpoons from like … cannons? I want harpoon cannons and dynamite fishing. And…" He stops and smiles, that mischievous Owen smile. "I think we need to get a boat."

As Owen thinks, so does Harley. She thinks how she's getting this all wrong. She shouldn't be here. Or he shouldn't. They should be far, far away from each other. This is not keeping the promise she made him when they broke up. This is not how she keeps him safe. But who is the Joker anyway, to dictate who she gets to hang out with anyway?! Yeah! SHE IS HER OWN WOMAN AND CAN MAKE HER OWN CHOICES. …Can't she? It's a lot of thinking squeezed into a few moments. Fortunately, they only go so deep and she can process their depth quickly.

When Owen sits upright, Quinn is quick to give him the space he needs to actually do so making sure to keep the rod well out of the way so he doesn't get tangled up in her line. And she's distracted enough by her own line of thinking that she offers her fellow Waller Hostage a vacant stare, as if she'd completely forgotten that she's the one who sewed the seed of thought.

She catches up quickly at least. And her expression turns suspicious. "…Really?" Beneath the suspicion lurks something more insidious: hope.

Now on his feet, Owen shoves the rest of the jelly donut in his mouth and readily agrees to her question with a floof off powdered sugar and a muffled "Mnyup". He knows they passed a marina of some sort nearby, and not all the boats were out of the water yet. Which means: they can just borrow one. He manages to swallow the donut, with surprisingly little chewing or choking involved and wipes at his face to try and get the sugar out of his stubble.

"We'll bring it back.. it'll be fine." He frowns suddenly, as if now realizing "But harpoon canons are going to be harder to find. Hmm, maybe if we can find at least like a spear fishing gun and a flare and some other stuff…" His head is spinning with ways to jury rig something and he's already moving towards the Marina. He's like a much less noble Macguyver … should he grow a mullet? That'd be pretty sweet. Maybe a mullet wig.

He looks back at her and smiles. Suddenly far more sure about this then he has been ever since that initial rush of reconciliation wore off.

He can do this.

They can do this.

"You comin'?"

This is what Harley knows, and when Owen asks her if she's up for shenanigans? She's helpless. If Owen says it's alright, it must be alright. It's going to be fine, and she trusts his judgment in this arena far more than her own.

Her be-pigtailed head is scrunched between her two lifted shoulders as she shrieks in glee, the sound at once giddy and shrill as she bounces up and down and rapidly claps the pads of her fingers together. She looks to the fishing poles. To the round little donuts that she got from her favorite bakery in Gotham. To the tacklebox with a little thing wrapped inside. And she decides she doesn't need any of it more than the new impulse in her brain.

She abandons every hook and spool of nylon to barrel headlong towards Owen. To wrap her arms around his neck and kiss him hard if he'll let her. "The flare gun's easy!" she'll reassure either way. "And I bet if we find the right fancy boat, someone's gotta have a pneumatic speargun, right? They ain't all that expensive and rich people collect fancy toys." And, just like her knowledge of how to fish, Harley is not immediately forthcoming on how precisely she knows the going rate of a speargun.

"Yer the best, Mercer."

The scream of joy and jumping cause Owen's face to split into a wide grin. He readily accepts the tackle-kissing, eagerly kissing her right back a mix of powdered sugar and cigarette smoke on his lips. He gets his best serious face on as she starts rambling out about what supplies they can easily get and which are more rare. He has resolved himself to the fact that a harpoon cannon will need to be a later project. The speargun talk causes Owen to realize, "We should take a nice one. Not like some junker fishing boat… hmm. I wonder what kind of yacht there is to borrow?" Borrow sounds better to him right about now.

Yer the best, Mercer

He stops for a second and lets that hit him for a minute before winking and replying, "Yer pretty damned amazing yerself Ms. Quinn…"

Heading for the Marina, he pauses, blurs and returns with the donuts. "We're going to need these." he confesses conspiratorially. And then wonders, "Do yacht's come with the sweet neck scarf thingies?" No, Owen does not know the word ascot, but he does recognizing correct yachting apparel at least.

There's praise for Harley to consume, and she does so voraciously. The consideration of an ascot, of seeing Owen in one, draws a hiccuping laugh from her throat and one of those shifts of expression as subtle and myriad as the ripples of the water nearby and the laps of waves against the piers. "Ya don't need one of those, sailor!" she tells him, slipping her arm behind his waist and hugging on even as she weasels her way under the arm that doesn't have the donuts in it.

She looks up and tries to bolster her smile to its previous intensity. Her step is a swaying one that bumps her hip into her escort with a startling frequency. "Ya got the best first mate in town and that's all ya need ta look a proper captain. 'Sides, I ain't got my little white dress, so it's kinda all ruined if we can't match ourselves a proper pair."

Pale blue eyes tear away abruptly and look to the marina in hopes of helping to find the perfect boat. "And if we like what we find," she muses a little more quietly, "maybe we just keep goin'." It's an empty bit of wishing—a thing that can never be. To keep herself from going sullen, she ramps herself up instead, patting Mercer's chest with her open palm. "So, didja hear about the kid who went fishing with a gym sock?"

Readily accepting Harley under his free arm he squeezes her tightly against him for a moment as they walk. He ahs in understanding at her explanation of why he doesn't need an ascot. He says, "It's so true." His eyebrows raise a bit at the part about a little white dress. He doesn't actually know what a sailor dress would consist of but he readily agrees, "Yea, we might need to get you one of those. But we can forgo costumes for the first outing of the USS Harlowen Von PartyBoat." He narrows his eyes, not quite happy with the name but sure that they will work on that.

He catches the small, quiet wish and says "I always wanted to do that…" He says it, while looking away, as if off-handedly but full of purpose. He adds, "Granted in my head it always a train. Just hop a train and go…" He turns back with a grin at the start of her joke and says very seriously, "No. I have not Harley. What'd he catch?"

And then he spies what looks like the perfect boat. More of a pleasure boat than most of the working boats around and not a light on in it or any of the ones around it. He points and says, "I think I found our water chariot…"

"Well, I ain't sure the species," Harley says, her eyes wide as though offering state secrets. "But he told me that he caught quite a fair few—hook, line, and stinker. HA!" She doesn't wait even a few beats before her grin breaks into a manic wideness as she waits impatiently for the reaction. Except that Owen is pointing in the direction of a boat, and her eyes tear along the line that his finger cuts. "Looks good ta me, Captain Mercer."

It might have given her pause to steal a boat in the era of Amanda Waller's presence in her life in the last year and change, but tonight it's hard to bring herself to care. Or, at least, it's easy to care but she's doing absolutely everything in her power to swallow down the anxious lump in her throat. The easiest way to do this, of course, is to double down on the bad choice and celebrate it. Quinn takes hold of Owen's arm as it drapes over and then spins herself out from under it in a maneuver that probably was something she picked up from an old Astaire and Rogers film. Except that she doesn't hold on, instead letting herself carelessly spin out a distance ahead of him with her arms carelessly flung wide as she dances and skips circles along in that direction singing all the while. Her boots are effortlessly sure, despite the appearances.

Loudly, she starts a tuneless caterwaul that might be an attempt at a song. "Soooooo, whaddya do with a drunken sailor? Whaddya do with a drunken sailor? Whaddya do with a drunken sailor early in the morrrnin~"

Owen's already laughing before she gets to the punchline. One because he can see it coming, two because she's just so damn cheerful about delivering it.

And really Owen should think twice about stealing a boat. And a few months ago he wouldn't have done it, specifically to prove that he was doing things for the right reasons. But then Waller had to go and show her hand. He's not a willing volunteer serving his country in some screwed up but noble thing. No. He's just another criminal being strong-armed into doing whatever Amanda Waller says to or his head will be blown clear off. And somehow that view of him has screwed him up again. Not in his usual fall off the wagon and bury himself in whatever he can get his hands on. No, more like fall off the wagon in terms of staying on the straight and narrow. And of course he realizes that he's doing this in Gotham. Is he doing it here to antagonize the Bats? Is he doing it here to hide from the "Defenders"? Is it Harley? Why doesn't he have a drink?

"First of all. I'm not drunk… yet." Owen clarifies as Harley sings, before continuing "And shit I hope the answers slam him on the deck and fuck his brains out." No. That is not how the song goes. But Owen is hopeful as always.

As Owen offers his suggestion for the evening's agenda, Harley stops her spinning, bounces back once onto her heel to pointedly change direction back towards him. Her laugh when it escapes this time is the darker one that foretells nothing but mischief to come, and her gaze and smile become just as wicked. She comes just close enough to grab hold of the waist of his pants at the side and pull him towards her, even as she continues backwards again.

"I think that can be arranged," she tells him, leaning her face in close with a feral grin. "I mean, I think the rest of the song I think is all lockin' up and tyin' down til he's sober again, so ya could be in real trouble. Especially when yer in the company of the Queen of Trouble. I'd show ya my crown, but I left it in my other tacklebox."

There's a pause, and then Quinn's whole face screws up and she stops short. "Holy Smoking Gun. We left all the stuff. How am I ever gonna sucker ya inta payin' fer out next night out now?"

Owen unlike most, is not worried or even dismayed at the dark chuckle and wicked smile. He laughs and opens up his arms as she approaches and again as she pulls him closer. "I think it should be…" He sticks out his lips in a half frown / pout at the part about locking up. "Yea, I didn't bring the handcuffs…" Emery gifted him fuzzy handcuffs for a reason and Owen intends to put them to good use at some point.

"Well first off, I can do this…" Owen steps back and winks at Harley before dissappearing. He's no Flash though, so it's more than a few second, probably confusing ones, before he's back with an armful of things. "And second.. I don't mind payin' for it. Unless you suddenly developed a taste for the high life… then we'll.." He's so tempted to just say steal it. But that's a step too far, for now. "Figure it out." There, that sounds better.

There's laughter for the talk of handcuffs, and even more laughter as Owen escapes her grip, although she just keeps her backward track and let's her tongue curl outwardly around an exposed canine. In those few confusing seconds, though, her gaze goes just a little wild as she takes in their surroundings anew. She could be looking for where Boomerang's gone.

She could be watching for someone else. The pier is not unfamiliar territory, after all.

But it's only a few seconds, and Owen Mercer's return restores something imperceptible to the shine of Harley's smile. "I love it when ya do that," Quinn says with an off-kilter sway as she plays with her cornsilk hair, and then she moves to take her blue plastic tacklebox back in hand. The rest, she's okay with making Boomerang carry. "Except fer when ya cheat against me. Everyone else, though? That is comedy gold. And no one appreciates it, right? Like, ya can't really explain it to most of the mooks in Gotham. They're too serious, thinkin' about 'oh, Gotham's such a terrible place ta raise a family' or 'oh, Gotham's unemployment rate is so oppressive' or 'oh, Gotham's criminal population is so prolific and has the country's worst recidivism rates' — which, by the way, I read that study once and ya should read the sponsors' list! No bias, my tuckus! — and it's all so blah, blah, blah, blah, blahblahblahblahblah! I mean, they should appreciate what we're tryin' ta do, yanno? Live a little, laugh a little! What are they doin' ta make things so much better, anyway?"

The quick trip back for the supplies warrants another donut when he returns. He unceremoniously drops the equipment on their 'rental' boat and comes back to help Harley aboard. He looks mildly confused as she starts talking about the crime rates and recipe-video-ism? But then she pulls it back to something that he can at least understand and appreciate and he laughs, "Exactly! Gotham is a crazy thing, but people are constantly trying to fight against it. Just enjo-…"

Owen's voice trails off as he hears something faint in the distance. A sound that doesn't quite belong in the still of the Gotham night. The whir is so soft among the splashing of the water against the docked boats that it would be easy to miss it. But there's no way they could be caught already, they haven't even taken the rope thingys off the metal doo-hickeys (Owen, obviously not much of a sailor). He holds up a finger to Harley and glances around to see if they've been somehow spotted, meanwhile the whirring noise grows louder, closer and more choppy.

The spotlight hits hard, blindingly lighting up the boat and the dock from the helicopter above. "Stay where you are. Your presence is required on behalf of the US Government." The generic agents voice is quickly followed up with a hologram of what is obviously a remote and very angry Amanda Waller, "You even think about trying to run from this and I will blow your damn heads off so fast I won't even get to enjoy it! … BOTH of you."

And with that six men geared up in full black tactical gear land and attach the necessary harnesses and gear needed to pull Harley and Owen up into their waiting ride.

With his best cheerful attitude, Owen smiles over at Harley. "Raincheck on the boatride … and the other stuff?"

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