Focus Group
Roleplaying Log: Focus Group
Participants
IC Details
Synopsis:

Wonder Woman calls a small meeting to get better acquainted with the two newest recruits of the Justice League, as well as brought up to speed of current events.

Other Characters Referenced: Batman
IC Date: May 20, 2019
IC Location: Hall of Justice, Metropolis
OOC Notes & Details
Posted On: 21 May 2019 04:44
Rating & Warnings:
NPC & GM Credits:
Associated Plots

"Thank you both for coming," Wonder Woman says as she smiles radiantly over a Justice League-logo-having mug of fresh coffee. "Before we get started, I'd like to say a few words."

EARLIER:

Diana Prince knows how to use email.

And scheduling tools.

And also apparently how to disappear into the depths of the Pacific Northwest for seven weeks pursuing something. The details remain unclear. It didn't reach the national news. Bigfoot was involved, apparently. Diana came back to the Hall of Justice with her arm wrapped up and plasters on her face. Now there's just one small stick-on on an otherwise immaculate forehead.

NOW:

"May Athena and Demeter smile upon this meeting, and may we find wisdom in council," Wonder Woman says, her eyes closing as if in prayer.

They open again.

"So then," she says. "Firestorm, we have not had much chance to meet. What has been drawing your focus, thus far?" At this point she leans slightly back in the chair to drink the coffee in peace, having ceded the floor. FOR NOW.

(As apology for this nebulous Bigfoot-related delay in a meet-and-talk moment, there is a small array of sliced baklava on the nearby table. It seems faintly luminous.)


To be honest, a lot of what Diana had been saying moments ago has been mostly a haze to Firestorm. That's because for all that she looks like she's had better days, it's still Wonder Woman. In the flesh. She could have been reciting commercial jingles and he would be no less star-struck.

At least he has someone who's listening for him, occupying his headspace. Professor Martin Stein makes a deliberate clearing of his throat (which is kind of a conundrum in itself given at the moment he hasn't got one), just as Firestorm realizes his name's been mentioned. He jerks his head up, not that he'd slouched all that much where he'd been seated. "Buh?"

Inside his head, Stein sighs. She was asking about your focus, ironically enough, he prompts, and not without just a hint of amusement. Face going slightly red with embarrassment for a moment, Ronnie forces a smile into place as he does mental gymnastics to catch up with the conversation. That he is about to have right now. With Wonder Woman.

"O-oh, um. It's cool. I mean, I figure everyone here gets busy, you know. Superhero thang. I just met Batman a few weeks ago, finally. Helped him with a thing. He said I did a good job," he adds, neglecting to mention that he'd nearly accidentally compromised the Bat's stakeout in the first place. Why linger on the small details?

"But it's great finally meeting you, Wonder Woman. I ah…" He shrugs as he fumbles with words, giving a small nod to himself as his inner professor suggests he just get to answering the question he'd been asked earlier. "Right. Um. So. Focus. Honestly, the whole thing in New York's been a big one mostly," he admits, easing up a little even as he sobers at the subject, a hand reaching up to scratch the back of his head. "New York's home and I can't even help out without potentially getting in trouble about it, and now with these Sentinel things…" He shakes his head. "I dunno. I just have a bad feeling about it, all around."


Though Atlee's studied various heroes on the surface world, she hasn't had a chance to meet them all yet. For starters, Metropolis alone is a big city! And there's a lot of people to touch base with, including those at the 'League. However, these are Karen's friends — and she absolutely wants to make a good impression on them, as well as provide a good showing as a representative of Strata.

This is, of course, offset quickly from the puff of her cheeks by way of the presence of baklava eaten a little too fast for her own good. (To her credit, she discovered quickly that she Really Likes Baklava.) Fortunately, Firestorm is put on the spot first, giving her enough time to compose herself and sort through the feelings she has about surface cuisine.

Caught between the law and the emotions of Firestorm, Atlee frowns, letting her arms cross as her weight settles in her seat. To have left home and being unable to actually go back… "I know it must be hard being away from home, but … you do have support here."

——

Wonder Woman laughs. "I'm glad to meet you too! Batman's a very memorable person. I hope the meeting was positive." The words are simple. Her face beams.

She sips her coffee. Matters grow more dire. The smile crosses from her face, left with thought. "Yes," she concurs. "I presume you mean the aftermath and sequelae of the registration act. I chose not to return to the embassy, though I have heard no reports of poor treatment." Perhaps I have Margaret to thank for that, Diana thinks.

"When I had first heard of this law, I had thought that it would be a valuable resource for those whose lives have been changed… those set apart by their talents, their abilities. And instead…"

Wonder Woman breathes out. "Sentinels." Her eyes turn to Firestorm again. "Tell me about the Sentinels. I've yet to meet one."

After this she pivots slightly to smile at Atlee. Perhaps even… gently. "Indeed," she says. "Things may take unusual forms, but fellowship is immortal. Though, Atlee - I would ask you the same question, if you will answer. I'll take my turn, of course."

Wonder Woman then glances out the window for a moment before her attention returns to the other two. It's a pleasant day outside. No ominous clouds (though there is a trend towards partly cloudy, it's for later in the evening).


A grateful look is cast in Atlee's direction, another team member he's not really had the chance to properly speak to, but no less glad to have the chance now. Firestorm smiles at her, nodding. "Thanks. It's always good to know."

He hasn't had much of an appetite to finish any more than the one piece of baklava he'd taken when they'd first convened, and with the turn of subject that he'd brought up, he doubts he'd be able to stomach seconds. Probably all the better since it seems Atlee appreciates the treat more than he does, and she'd seemed happy about it at least.

"The Sentinels. Yeah. I was at that press conference when they revealed them. Plain clothes, of course. It was pretty crazy…"

He sits back in his seat, frowning as he recalls the incident, and in his head even the professor is silent. He'd heard about what had happened from Ronnie, and even with the news reports that had further confirmed things, it was still difficult to believe.

"They're super huge, purple robots. I dunno who picked the color-scheme on those things, but they still mean business. So far as I could tell, those things were able to figure out who was a metahuman, or at least had some way of scanning for identities because they weren't firing entirely at random, and after the fence collapsed that separated the protesters from the rest of the crowd, everything got mixed up pretty quick." His expression darkens. "I would've fought them back with the others that were acting out, if I could at the time. I really wanted to."


"That sounds awful. I hope nobody got hurt too badly," the Stratan says, brow creased with worry.

Atlee sits up a bit straighter, her hands folding and falling to the surface of the table with a mild 'thump.' "Well."

"When I returned a few weeks ago, I accidentally brushed against a nest of krawkrugsha. — The uh — the lava lobsters! As a result, I ended up accidentally leading one to the surface, and I had bravely fought to keep myself from being swallowed whole."

She was totally swallowed whole. And then barfed up in a slick of magma. There's probably a cellphone video on Youtube.

"After it was defeated, I did what I could to assist with city and street repairs, but … I had to spend time properly closing up the route that I had used to come here, or else more of their kind would have been finding their way into Metropolis."

Atlee then nods firmly. "I'm staying vigilant for any other threats that may come from pretty unexpected places. I'm hoping I can help out in a greater capacity soon enough."


Wonder Woman finishes her coffee as Firestorm speaks. "Purple," she says, as if in thought. She nods once, with decision. "I don't blame you. You did well to report."

She contemplates what Atlee, what Strata says. "Unexpected places - always the worst."

Wonder Woman rises from her chair and steps towards the window that caught her eye.

"I had been asked to investigate an abduction… it led me somewhere rather surprising, out West. The subterranean colonies of the hairy-bodied people are free now, and the cruel masters who used them as slaves have had their power broken. In fact," now Wonder Woman looks towards Atlee, "Perhaps I might ask you to send a message. They live simply but they would benefit, I think, from aid, and it will be long before they can trust the surface world again."

They? Either way, Wonder Woman unlatches the window and opens it, letting in a slightly oceanic breeze.

"Ah! It's such a nice day out. Firestorm, Atlee. Would it bother you much if we continue this in the sky?" As she puts one foot on the windowsill, she pauses to add, "Bring the baklava, if you like."

"Do you have an idea of how many of these Sentinels there are?" Wonder Woman then asks Firestorm, in the same tone she spoke about the baklava.


All too happy to hear accounts from the others, Firestorm glances over at Atlee as she relates her own experiences from the past month. Brows lift as she speaks of…wait. "Lava…lobsters?" he repeats, hearing his own confusion and disbelief echoed in Professor Stein's thoughts. He asks nothing more as he continues to hear Atlee's report out. There are sooo many questions he wants to ask.

No, we are not at all curious about what lava lobsters look like and do, Professor Stein notes sternly in his head.

"Aww, come on Prof, aren't you at least a leeeettle bit curious?" Firestorm asks the air, turning his head aside as though addressing someone. There's…no one there, of course.

He's brought to attention once again as Wonder Women steps up to bat with her own report. "Wait, you mean like, wookies?" he asks, ignoring Stein's groan. "That's…wow." His shoulders slump a little as he reflects on the activities of the two women. In comparison even helping take down some crooked military men and a bunch of alien lizards seemed a little lackluster.

"Oh, we heading out?" Instantly perking, the flame-headed teenager hops up from his seat, hovering as he gestures for Atlee to go first as Wonder Woman awaits them at the window. His face scrunches up in recollectance as he thinks on the question. "There were five at the press conference. One of them disappeared- someone just made it vanish with them. Somehow I don't think those were the only ones the DPS has, though…"


'Lava… lobsters?' "The krawkrugsha," Atlee replies, giving a big firm nod at Ronnie. When he starts talking to himself, her head tilts quizzically; following his gaze to the blank space in the air. Is he using a communicator? Is it rude to ask?

Wonder Woman asks a task of her. "Of course," Atlee says with a nod. "If you have their exact location, I can probably track them down pretty fast." Following Wonder Woman and taking stride alongside Firestorm, Atlee stares at the window for a moment and then remembers — she really actually can't fly.

But, fortunately, she parked a slab of rock outside.

Yes, seriously. There's a rough-hewn platform of stone outside, a bit larger than what she would need space-wise to stand on— and, as they file up and to the window, it's floating up to meet her. (Atlee is also totally carrying baklava.) "They may feel compelled to make a lot of them if someone can just make one disappear. That's somewhat troubling."


Wonder Woman smiles at the news of the lava lobsters. It's almost a dreamy look for a moment. What wonders he will see, thinks Diana, before her attention focuses on him more intently. She glances towards where Ronnie seemed to be speaking. Then to him again.

"Wookie? I don't understand. I think they're called "Bigfoot" in the popular press… Their scouts and foragers have been sighted by Man's world, once in a while."

Then she laughs. "I think tracking those big machines would be good. But I would not propose to go off and destroy them just yet." That's a sentence with some freight. "Even so, though. It's better to think there's only a few dozen than thousands, isn't it?"

"Now then. Firestorm, have you ever done the circuit round the bay?"

She gestures out towards the Hall of Justice's lawn. Is that a… triangle, pointing approximately towards the ocean, in visibly-distinct clover vs. fescue?

"We've put up some markers."

"Do you care to lead?" Diana asks Atlee.


Easy for Atlee to say! "Even the name sounds like it's got rocks in it," Firestorm mutters. He wonders as she pauses at the window. Before he can ask what the problem is, he sees…a giant slab of rock. It occurs to him that he has no idea what exactly Atlee does, now that he thinks about it.

Then Wonder Woman gets a stare. "Oh man, does that mean you've never watched like, any of the Star Wars movies? We need a movie night here." Getting off subject just a bit, Stein reminds him. After all, Wonder Woman's talking about actual Bigfoots. He really should be more excited about that, but a lot of hard to believe things have been happening that he wonders if he's just been overwhelmed already.

"I sure hope they haven't built more than a few dozen, but even a handful seems over the top." He's itching to see how one of them fairs against his transmutation abilities, but he's already been warned that going immediately on the offensive would just exacerbate matters. Professor Stein's words, not his. So instead he lets himself be distracted as Wonder Woman points things out. "Circuit? No, actually. I haven't done a whole lot here 'cept play this super old 'Pong' game with the old super computer."


Atlee doesn't even hesitate; the slab of stone floats up to the window and she steps up onto the sill and outside onto it, riding the slab at an easy glide through the air as though it were some cobbled-together hoverboard. Ronnie becomes exasperated with Diana's choice of movies, and the Stratan lifts a hand to push her hair back.

"I think she means like a track. Like racing, maybe."

And then, she's asked to lead off. Firing a big grin at Firestorm, Atlee shifts her stance on the flying rocks. "Sure thing!"

And then with her weight tipping forward, the Stratan Protector is catapulting through the air, flying toward the marker. "Try to keep up!" she calls, sounding quite enthusiastic about the affair.

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