Artificial Powers
Roleplaying Log: Artificial Powers
Participants
IC Details
Synopsis:

Being undercover is risky business, and powers are identifying. So maybe make some new ones?

Other Characters Referenced: Eliza Harmon, Supergirl
IC Date: May 05, 2019
IC Location: Quake's van, Metropolis
OOC Notes & Details
Posted On: 05 May 2019 21:31
Rating & Warnings: G
NPC & GM Credits:
Associated Plots

It's early in the morning. The sun has begun to crest the horizon and filter through the tall buildings of the cityscape. The birds are actively flitting about in search of food. Morning commutes are well underway. And somewhere amidst all of this lies a rusty blue van resting within the cool shade of a parking garage.

It starts with a twitch. A spasm of limbs as someone is jarred awake. The motion in itself might not be too alarming except that the van suddenly rocks as if something had been thrown against the outside of it. Inside an empty water bottle gets flicked off of the floor and bounces around the interior a couple of times.

Quake's head pokes out from beneath a pile of blankets, eyes blurry but open wide as she looks around with a notable wince on her face. No one saw that, right..? Did it wake Gwen? As the bottle falls into the front passenger footwell with a rattle she's still holding her breath, perfectly motionless while staring at the prone form beside her.

***

Gwen awakes with a jump, though her mind is calm and her pulse is only slightly elevated by the surprise of waking up. Spider-sense is great for keeping a person calm in stressful situation. Gwen's first instinct is to roll over and check Daisy: her eyes land on her partner, and when she sees nothing visibly wrong, she relaxes perceptibly. She also yawns. "Hey. Everything okay? Something hit us, or did you shake the van in your sleep?"

***

It can be difficult keeping things from Gwen. Quake's got a hand held up as though she's wanting to reach out to the Spider but is too afraid to make contact right away.

There's a delay in her response before "Yah..I shook the van in my sleep."

The raised hand is redirected, running through the mess of dark hair before she turns to flop down onto her back with a sigh and stare at the roof. "Sometimes I dream about when the helicarrier fell. It was … Sorry to wake you," she changes her mind with a slight eyeroll and headshake.

Only a second later she's reaching for her phone, checking the time with another heavy breath. May as well be awake at this hour.

***

Gwen's still sleep-dopey enough that her response to this admission of something approaching PTSD is muted. She just wraps her arms around her girlfriend's waist and spoons her, sharing her presence, her warmth, her solidarity. Also, Daisy's back facing her means Gwen needn't be quite as self-conscious about her morning breath as she murmurs, "It was what?"

***

Again it's several very quiet seconds before Quake responds, motionless as dark eyes stare off into space.

The one word which follows is spoken softly. "Terrifying."

An arm works its way through the mass of blankets until it can find the hip of the woman lying against her, the earlier concern about making contact having passed. "Gwen. Why are you—" The thought is cut short with a muttered "No" before she tries again. "You really don't have to go through all of this for me. I don't mind dragging my own butt into the slum-side but I don't like bringing you along with me. You deserve better."

***

"I deserve a girlfriend who has peace after terrorists attacked her and her friends," Gwen says firmly. "And you deserve a girlfriend who will help you get whatever peace you can. If I gotta sleep in a van a little bit to make sure we both get what we deserve, well, that's not so bad." She smiles against the back of Daisy's neck. "It's better than sleeping in a cocoon made of webbing strung up on a building's wall because I'm homeless in a strange world. And the company's way better." She rests her forehead against the back of Daisy's head, bumping like an affectionate cat.

***

When Quake sighs this time it's exaggerated and done with a smile. "You're too good to me, you know that? Okay. I wasn't sure if it was going to come to this but you've just forced my hand."

Though first she needs to extract herself from blankets and Spider. This is easier in theory than it is in practice. A small disk stuck to the side of the van is pressed, turning on a couple of pale white LED lights within the darkened interior. It's enough to find the courier bag she had been looking for, pulling it off of a peg then rolling back onto the sleeping bag beside Gwen with the treasure in hand.

"You know I've been seeing some people about working with my powers. Something else recently came out of it."

A single gauntlet is removed from the pack, bulky in shape and with what looks like a fair amount of grey and black polymer construction. The latter is then set aside while the former starts to get pulled onto her arm, rolling the sleeve out of the way as she goes.

"One of the people I met is Ellie. Another metahuman. She's a scientist who works down at LexCorp. Really friendly. Like..to a fault. But. After just two visits she had these prototypes worked up for me, and that got me thinking. You're out of costume because of this whole undercover business, right?"

Half-gloved fingers curl once as she looks at Gwen with a lopsided smile. "What if we could give you a whole new set of powers?"

***

Gwen smiles back. "I've been thinking about that. It's one reason I've been out of costume, so I can train myself to stop sticking to walls and shooting webs and stuff. Strength, jumping, speed, reflexes, those are all generic enough I can stick with them, but wall-crawling and web-shooting? They're dead giveaways. But you're thinking of giving me artificial powers?"

***

"Maybe?" Quake suggests with a slight shrug. "I can't speak for Ellie but she loves to innovate and works faster than anyone I know. There's no harm in stopping by and seeing what she might be able to do, right? Otherwise you're just sitting idle around here while I do this whole undercover thing."

Here she holds up the gloved hand. "I know… It was your choice. And it's my choice to do something helpful for you. So deal."

***

Gwen chuckles. "I'm not refusing, I'm just trying to get the strategy. I'd been working on this same idea from my angle, even trying to go through LexCorp. How's that for a coincidence? Turns out just saying you're a homeless, penniless girl from another world with spider-powers doesn't make the richest guy in the world throw open the doors to his R&D lab for me, though." Gwen stretches in her sleeping bag, toes pointed and hands groping over her head, groaning a yawn. Say what you will, she's not bitter about the reality of the situation. When she collapses her spine back down to normal length, and continues, "Thank you for your help, Skye. I appreciate you a lot."

***

Quake's smile is easily erased when Gwen talks about having already tried getting through LexCorp. One eyebrow rises slightly higher than its counterpart as she stares at her companion. "Oookay, so..a lot less 'sitting idle' than anticipated. Gotcha."

Not that she's upset. They each have their own lives and their own 'secrets' and truthfully she has absolutely no idea what Gwen's been doing with her time since they both left New York.

As Gwen lies back down Quake suggests "Well I have to do -something.- Be a pretty lousy girlfriend if I didn't."

Taking a cue from the Spider she also settles back down after digging a large superball out of the gauntlet pack. She may have 'borrowed' one or two of those from Eliza's lab. They make for good practice, Quake 'bouncing' the ball from her fingertips straight up toward the roof then catching it on the return trip. It's become something of a habit of hers lately, a means of light impulse power training that can be done within the van.

"Things are going a lot slower than I was hoping. I still don't know anything major about the Brotherhood and the news still hasn't said anything regarding the Registration database. I'm getting worried that something might have happened. But whatever is going on, I don't like feeling that I'm holding you back. You've still got major bad guy butt to kick, G."

***

Gwen scoffs. "In this city? I couldn't get to a bad guy before someone with a red cape got to them first. Nah, I'm a New York girl." She watches the superball intently, the back of her brain working on something. "I've just been doing my own thing, working on the goober to get me home. Kkkkkkki mean the person whose name I can't say is working for LexCorp, and she's working with a scientist at LexCorp, so I tried going through them to get some help on the topic, but…" She shrugs her left shoulder, the one she's not currently lying on.

***

"We could always take a tour of Gotham?" Quake suggests with a smile as the ball falls neatly back into her hand. "I hear there's always a crime problem there. Or we could just get up and kick breakfast's butt. That also works."

***

Gwen admits, "I do kind of want to find out what's supposed to be so scary about the Batman. Spiders are way scarier. Especially Australian ones. Not that I'm Australian, but I saw Crocodile Dundee, so that's as good as being Australian." She pauses. "I should shut up until coffee, shouldn't I?"

***

Quake chuckles softly and reaches over to give Gwen a hug. "Probably, but you're too entertaining to stop."

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