The Long Goodbye
Roleplaying Log: The Long Goodbye
Participants
IC Details
Synopsis:

Eddie says goodbye to Roy the only way she knows how. Even if Roy might not have gotten the message.

Other Characters Referenced: Owen Mercer (Boomerang), Phil Coulson
IC Date: March 27, 2019
IC Location: Anywhere NYC
OOC Notes & Details
Posted On: 28 Mar 2019 05:10
Rating & Warnings: Language, drug use.
NPC & GM Credits:
Associated Plots

* * *

'I need to feed the cats.'

That's the only text Roy receives in nearly a month from Eddie, and then still it happens a couple days after the news that the Triskelion has fallen. Despite Roy reaching out, she's been unresponsive until that single line, but at least it means she's alive?

The familiar rooftop is cast in slanting rays of red and orange as the sun sets over Manhattan. Spring hasn't fully sprung, but at least there are no longer snow drifts building up on the side of the skylight where they first met. This time, the lock has been properly jimmied and one of the glass panels has been lifted ajar. Down below, an old fashioned oil lamp has been lit where it sits on the dusty mantle of the abandoned fireplace.

* * *

Roy blamed work when Lian asked why he was on-edge after the bombing, he blamed Lian when his co-workers asked, and he blamed mutant politics when his former teammates asked. Mostly though, he blamed himself. He should never have gotten so involved with a SHIELD agent. And just what in the hell was 'involved' anyhow?

None of that changes the relief that floods into him, loosening the tightness in his chest, when he receives that text. Luckily, the babysitter is already scheduled to work, and so Roy finds himself on his way to New York as the sun droops down toward the horizon. He hauls himself up over the edge of the roof with an easy grace, just enough liquidity to his motion to show that he took the edge off somehow, without being particularly wobbly.

The open window-pane calls to him, but he stops just alongside the skylight, pulling a mirror-headed arrow from his quiver and using it to get a quick glance around the room below (and Wally said he'd never use that one). The arrow is settled back into his quiver, and then he drops down, bow held close before him, its arms already locked in place. He drops into a perfect super-hero landing, one knee grounded, one hand bracing his crouch, and then searches for the spy.

* * *

Eddie is easy enough to find and perhaps blissfully alone in this once-upon-a-time drug den. Remnants from its past litter the floor though most of it had been cleared from the view of the skylight to make it appear truly abandoned. There is a bureau with missing drawers along one wall, a broken lamp in the corner and a lawn chair made of frayed plastic webbing among the refuse. Hashmark sits in the latter, looking to have just settled down at a laptop so new the Dell stickers are on the lid boasting what core processor it has.

Even though she was expecting him, Eddie is on edge and the quiet thump of his graceful landing is met with a seer of bloodshot eyes and the barrel of her sidearm pointed his way. The other odd thing about her is the fact that she's dressed in just a tank top, some dusty old jeans and a pair of metal bracers that march up each forearm. At least a dozen recently fresh cuts are on her bicep, red and angry and barely scabbed over.

"Thank God." Eddie swallows as she sets down the gun next to her impromptu workstation on a flipped over plastic milk crate boosted from behind a bodega no doubt. Not one to put a lot of faith in a higher power, she seems to vehemently mean her praise of one in this very moment.

* * *

The gun is the biggest problem, the spy's state is the second, and her odd attire and added cuts are a distant third and fourth. When Eddie lowers the pistol, Roy relaxes quite a lot, folding the arms of the bow with the press of a button and the sharp snapping motion of his hand. The weapon is tucked away alongside the quiver as he crosses the room to her, "You look like shit, E." There's a veneer of humor on the words, pasted loosely over hard-edged concern. "I was worried as hell." His lips press together after the admission, but he still crouches down alongside the lawn chair, eyes flickering over her form to check for more serious injuries. "Must've sucked, having all your careful prep-work blown to shit." Only then does he stop, "Wait. Isn't that chair screwing with you? How high are you right now?"

* * *

That note of concern barely concealed. Eddie hears it, reads it in his body language, and swallows past the lump it raises in her throat. The line of her jaw sharpens as she sets her teeth against it, and her eyes blink past the sting it causes in them. "Well, for once you had reason to be." Worried, that is. The entire complex did crumple in on itself, in fact there are still search and rescue attempts in the rubble because no one wants to admit that hope has been lost.

Him crouching there is convenient for leveling their gazes, even if it gives him a more clear view of the bumps and bruises she must have obtained during the escape. "Newest in SHIELD technology. Dampeners." She looks tempted to test them out and reach for him, fingers lifting with a twitch before she literally flinches herself away from the notion. "Not fool proof."

* * *

Roy snorts at 'for once,' grinning a little crookedly and shaking his head, "I've always got good reason to be worried. Only in New York do things get blown up more often than in Gotham." Or in any number of third-world cities. Other third-world cities if you ask some Gothamites. His brows rise sharply at the description of the bracers. "Dampeners. Like, 'I don't have to take this away entirely, I can shut it down sometimes and still have it when I need it?'" His smile spreads across his face again, crinkling the skin around his mask. "That's pretty badass, E." The flinch makes his grin fade slightly before he forces it back full-force, "So now you don't have to know if someone's hiding something from you, or if your co-workers had sex on that desk." It's all a joke until a very sincere, "That must be a real relief."

* * *

For some reason, Eddie doesn't share his joy. It was the end goal she shared with him, to find a way to control her powers if not get rid of them for good. It should be that she got everything she ever wanted. Should. And yet her eyes remain harrowed even as his crinkle. "It wasn't enough. Nothing has been enough. But I'm going to fix that." It's an ominous promise, and one that currently seems entirely too vague.

She pulls her gaze from him and back to the computer screen where she starts clicking at keys again. Seeming familiar enough with whatever financial looking program she's using, she navigates menus and options quickly. "Do you still wear that necklace I gave you?"

* * *

Her lack of excitement and narrowed eyes cause his brow to furrow above the mask once more, and he reaches out, carefully grasping a relatively soft-looking part of the glove and giving a light, testing squeeze, "Yeah, maybe without expecting there to be an ominous crack of lightning behind you next time, E." But he moves on with her question, his hand retreating to fetch the necklace out of his collar without any hesitation at all, "Of course." Both hands go behind his neck to loose the thong, and he holds it out, "You're just using these as a temporary fix until you can…" he stops, his eyes widening, "Wait… that stuff all the rumors say SHIELD has, that doesn't neutralize abilities, does it? That wasn't your plan, was it?"

* * *

Eddie cringes as Roy touches her, but there is no reaction from the metal and leather that encases her lower arm. It seems more a mental reaction at the contact, as if she's expecting the worse and it's far more exaggerated than it was before. "My plan was to uncover what a dangerous man had in mind for SHIELD. I failed. And the fact that I had no notion, no warning as to what was coming, means he didn't think I was a worthy enough asset to save. Which means you and your daughter are in danger, and I put you there."

* * *

The cringe doesn't do anything good for Roy's ego, even if he understands the reason for it on an intellectual level. Eddie's words do excellent things, however, for his adrenaline system. His eyes widen and he can feel that chill rush down his spine, the 'leemer' that pilots talk about. "He was behind the bombing then?" He seems to take that as granted though, given Eddie's other words. He pushes himself sharply back up to his feet. "I shouldn't be here then. I should be down there, where I can protect her." There's a pause, and he looks down to Eddie, "Hell, you shouldn't be here either if you're on his list too. Shouldn't be anywhere he'd expect you to be."

* * *

"The necklace, Roy." Eddie says impatiently. Though he took it off and offered it to her, she hadn't yet reached for it. To see it swinging away out of her grasp makes her lunge out of the chair for it. "I can fix this. I can fix it. I don't know if it was him yet, but it's too much of a coincidence. Just. Just give me the necklace, and I'll make it all go away. Please, please, please, Roy. I need to make it go away." That badly frayed thread in Eddie has reached the limits of its tensile strength and it snaps as she follows his standing motion with one of her own and pleads nonsensically.

* * *

Roy had been reaching out to hand over the necklace, but he recognizes that desperation, one addict to another. It might not be the same, but it looks the same, and he draws the necklace back, holding it up over his right shoulder. "What is it, E?" His feet shift a little, turning his left side toward her just a touch, "I'm totally going to give it to you, just as soon as you tell me what you're going to do with it. Because nothing's that easy. Nothing just… goes away."

* * *

Both of Eddie's hands fly up, palms out in capitulation. "It's okay Roy. I have a plan. I have plan. You can trust me." Which are always famous last words, aren't they? Like dealing with a frightened animal, Morales slows all her movements down, creeping a boot forward on the splintering plank flooring. "It's okay." She says again to reassure him, just in case he gets any bright ideas about doing something stupid with the necklace. Like destroy it. That thought alone has her suddenly jerking forward to make a grab for it, but her fingers miss it by millimeters. "Two million dollars. You've been walking around with two million dollars around your neck!" She shouts in panic.

* * *

Roy isn't buying the horse-soothing routine, the shift forward across the flooring causing his legs to tense, ready to move, and he pulls it back when she reaches for it, his other arm looping out in an attempt to wrap around her waist to pin her in place — probably not anywhere near enough force to actually stop the frantic spy. At the shout, he immediately lowers the necklace down where she can reach it, "Holy shit." He glances to the item curiously, not bothering to pull it away again, "I've never even seen two million dollars. What are you going to do with it, E? What's our plan?"

* * *

When Roy lowers the necklace, Eddie's hand closes around it gratefully and pulls it to her chest in a fist. She slumps into the arm that rings her waist, sinking against him with her forehead dropping to rest against his shoulder where she rocks side to side lightly. "I need the other half which Boomerang has but I can't find him." Like Roy, Owen is probably waltzing around with it somehow, unknowingly. At least, her hope is he still has it. "But I'm going to give you enough to for you to go anywhere you want and be safe. The rest is going to Coulson as my final apology."

* * *

The lean is good, it's reassuring — in some ways, and troubling in others. Roy looses the strap of the necklace, putting that hand in the middle of her back, on top of the tanktop, and rubbing gently. "You didn't tag him? Dude seemed sketchy enough," says the guy who showed up for a mission with a flask, and for this meeting with some mild narcotics in his bloodstream, "I would have put a tracker on him first thing." Still, her plan does not seem to make him feel any better, "I don't want your money, E." Beat pause, "Okay, I wouldn't mind a little bit of it. But I'm not gonna take it. And you're gonna stop talking bullshit too. You're gonna be apologizing for a long-ass time to come. Besides, paying me and Coulson," whoever that is, "off doesn't fix things. Dealing with the asshole threatening us fixes things."

* * *

There is a soft laugh that echoes up from between them. "I sewed one into his jacket last fall." But apparently that wasn't the answer to Eddie's problem about locating him. Doesn't help that Owen knows about the tracker. She finally lifts her head, "You need to stop being nice to me. That's what got you into this shit in the first place." She half turns in his embrace, only to free her other hand so that together she can manipulate the necklace. She pushes down the pin that holds the eye hook of the pendant to the chain, and then pivots the two disks that make up the coin like relief of the Saint so they splice away from each other. Inside is a micro data card. "The threat to you goes away once I remove the common factor that links him to you."

* * *

Roy looses his arms around Eddie as she turns, letting his right drop to his side and keeping his left at her waist, not holding her close, just… holding her. Watching her manipulate the medallion into a micro data card, his eyebrows lift and he nods his approval of the spytech. "Nice. And no, I really don't have to stop being nice to you. That's what heroes do, right?" Beat pause, "Besides, there aren't enough nice in your life," he flips Han Solo's quote on its head. "Okay, so as soon as you've got control of the money again, Boomerang and I aren't in danger, only you? That sounds like a bad plan. How about we find the guy and deal with him instead?"

* * *

Eddie gives a bit of a sad smile as she flips the disk out of its metal encasement and closes it again. The piece of circuitry and plastic goes into her female bag of holding (aka the cleavage) and she's reaching up to link the necklace back around his neck. "Palmer probably doesn't give two fucks about Boomerang." With slight rock up on her toes as she reaffixes the chain and deposits a whisper of a kiss on his lips. "And hopefully none for me, and so none for you. Now you should go, you're not going to want to be around for the next part."

* * *

Roy's gaze follows the chip — totally because it's half of two million dollars, not because of where it's going (that's a lie) — which neatly lowers his head to make putting the necklace back around his neck easy. And the little soft kiss even easier. His lips curve upwards beneath hers, his fingers at the back of her waist tighten a little, and then she's talking, and he lets out a little breath and eases the hand at her back. "Palmer." There's a thoughtful sound to his voice, trying the name on for size. "You try the 'fake your death after the giant explosion' thing? Probably doesn't work so well against people who think they can take down SHIELD." Her suggestion that he leave, though, that draws a frown, and a slightly wary, "Are you going to tell me what you're gonna do? Or do I not even want to know that? Because if it has anything to do with making it clear where you are so they can come after you and leave me and Lian alone, you can fuck right off of that plan."

* * *

"Let me see your face." Eddie mutters, a bare finger sliding around the edge of his mask until she finds the release for it. For the first time, she can touch him with her bare fingers and not need the drugs to dull her powers enough to do so. "I'm not doing anything more with the plan until I can get the other half of the alphanumeric code that unlocks the cyptocurrency." She bites her bottom lip as she pulls the domino mask away from his eyes. "When the Trike fell, something happened to me." She confesses. "I felt everything. Dampeners be damned. Everything, Roy. And I need to make it go away."

* * *

Roy starts to reach up for his mask at Eddie's request, but she's got it, so he just lifts his head away from the mask, leaving it in her hands. The bioelectricity that her fingers inspire on his skin sends a little shiver down his spine. Her description of the fall of the Trike widens his eyes, and he draws in a breath. "Wow." Very eloquent, Roy. In fact, it takes him a long moment to come up with anything better. "So how long does it usually take for memories to fade? Or do you need to overwrite them? I'm not saying I can top all of that, all of whatever that was, just… I don't know, E. There's got to be a solution besides offering yourself up on a platter for suicide-by-douche."

* * *

"The memories faded once I was away from the Trike. But…" It's hard to explain but the fact is the experience just left her shook. Eddie doesn't even like talking about it, by the way she swallows. Normally, she'd play it off and hide behind her defenses of sarcasm or slip in a change of topic. Spin it, like only a spy can, and hide behind lies and half truths. But she's opened the door for Roy, if only a crack. "It was my punishment for failure. And I wish I could say I could handle it with more grace. The nightmares. The feeling like I was punched in the gut. That has nothing to do with my powers or it'd be gone by now." She slips his mask into his bandolier and traces her thumb over the pressure mark it left on his cheek.

Eyes search his face for a moment, like she's desperately trying to 'over write' the anxiety and trauma by remembering the angles of his cheeks instead. "Now go, before I make you leave." Eddie says sternly as she gives him a light shove in the chest, if only to disentangle herself from his proximity so she can cross to the fireplace. Down on hands and knees, she's reaching up the chimney in pursuit of something hidden there.

* * *

Roy listens soberly, watching the tightness around her eyes as she opens that crack up just a little more. His hand comes up to touch hers as she slips the mask into his bandolier, fingers curling around the edge of her thumb for a heartbeat, "Look, I don't know what you did, or who did the Trike. But you shouldn't assume it was Palmer without proof." His knuckles brush her stomach as she mentions feeling like being punched there, but he doesn't chase when she retreats, "I'll go, E." He steps back toward the bureau, grabbing it with both hands, "Just promise me you aren't gonna do anything dumb." And then he drags the bureau toward the center of the room, a step up toward the skylight. No rocket boots on this hero, and there's no convenient site for a line arrow.

* * *

Eddie twists and flops down onto the floor, pulling a dusty leather roll with her. "This used to be my apartment." She tells him, apropos of nothing save once upon a time she convinced him it was a dealer's that she used to run security for. "I was a wreck when I came back from a job in Belarus. I botched a hit. Killed a little girl no older than Lian." She starts telling a story as he maneuvers the chest of nonexistent drawers towards the skylight as she pulls a candle out of the end of the roll. "Didn't even care that a bunch of junkie squatters had taken it over. I just…joined in." Her lighter is pulled out of her pocket, the flame used to soften the end so she can stick it to the wooden floor where it won't topple.

* * *

The first statement draws Roy's eyebrows up sharply, and he glances up to the skylight like, 'and you broke into your own place,' but keeps silent. The second statement, he causes him to draw in a breath, shock rippling through him. His throat feels thick, tight, and he tries to clear it, fails. Watching her preparations for a long moment, he hesitates, licking his lips. And with a painfully earnest expression on his face, he says quietly, "Come back to Gotham with me tonight, E. You can crash in the guest room, have breakfast. Meet Lian." It's a clear extension of trust, for all that it makes his voice shake just a little, "She's a kick in the pants. Smart as a fucking whip."

* * *

Eddie unties the roll and is spilling out the contents when he asks her to come back to Gotham. A needle, a piece of rubber tubbing, a spoon and a vial. "Sure about that?" Eddie says sardonically with a little disbelieving shake of her head. "What I'm trying to tell you is I'm not the type of person to make those kind of promises, Roy. Hell, how can you even know when I'm telling you the truth? You shouldn't trust me, and you sure as fuck shouldn't be bringing me home to meet the family to share Eggos with." Her lips rub together pensively, "You know, the best lesson I learned from those junkies, and what most people don't understand, is that track marks - aside from the needle mark itself - is actually soot in your veins. The trick is to use a solid silver spoon…"

* * *

Roy points down to the paraphernalia, "Not if you're going to do that. I don't bring my work home, and I don't bring my habit home." In a whole lot of ways, they're one and the same. "But if you put that aside…" he shrugs, "I don't think it's that much of a risk, E. I've got nothing you want, no ins, no access, no money. So you're not playing me. You mention a thing about this life in front of Lian, you're out the door faster than you can blink. But otherwise, I think it'd be good for you to have a regular morning." There's a pause, "And come on, Eggos are only on school-nights." Another pause, "Shit, this is a school night."

* * *

Eddie's smile wobbles at the edges, but she's already twitching for that high. Something to make it all go away. So she has to make Roy go away. She can't do this with him standing right there. Letting him down. "Sorry, Cowboy. Playing house is for someone else. Get on home and mind your prairie." There is a sniffle there, a sting of guilt making her nose wrinkle. She knocks it away with the back of her knuckles. "Pop Tarts then." Morales imagines the breakfast foods, "Man, you know this means I can eat real food again? It doesn't have to come out of a factory package." Her mind bounces all over the place. "Get along little doggie." She sing songs before biting one end of the tubing so she can tie off her arm.

* * *

Roy watches her smile wobble, watches her hesitate even for that slightest instant… and then go for the gear. He nods slightly, his shoulders slumping a little. "Pancakes. Take care of yourself, E. Go get a good diner breakfast in the morning, if you've got the stomach for it." Studying her for a moment longer, he hesitates himself, then steps forward, leaning down to press a kiss to her forehead, then turns around before the idea of something harder, something heavier can latch itself into his brain. His mask goes back on, settled back into place, and three quick steps get him the necessary speed to get atop the bureau, leaping up to grab the edge of the open pane of the skylight and haul himself up and onto the roof.

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