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Summary: Batman debriefs Oracle on a dangerous criminal, and hatches a plan.

Participants: Batman, Oracle

Location: The Batcave

Rating: PG-13 for Discussed Brutal Violence



The night has not yet begun, which is precisely the time best suited for Batman to get non-patrol work done. He currently sits in the chair before the Bat computer, the screen filled with the picture of a young but severe woman, with her jet black hair held in a tight ponytail out of the near top of her head. Next to her, a general profile exists including her name (Edda Durgo) and a short wrap-sheet (mostly tax dodges and a few implications in murder, all excused in court. For the moment, Batman waits for his guest to arrive, which Alfred should be showing through to the Cave any moment now, if her usual punctual nature is to be trusted.


Indeed, she's actually early- even after Alfred talked her in to accepting a re-fill for her travel-mug of tea. The re-fill's better than the brew she'd had in it originally. She wheels herself out of the elevator, politely declining the butler's offer to push her, and moves down the ramp towards the computer. "Does this have anything to do with our Man-Bat problem from the other night?" she wonders. Bruce isn't the only one with a habit of skipping formalities and going right to work. She probably learned it from him... or her father.


"The very same. A group of thugs Batgirl and I took down gave me Durgo's name. Information is sketchy, as she seems to have just arrived in Gotham. But here is what I know." He pushes a button, which cues up a video montage. Did he make this? When did he have TIME to make this?


"Edda Durgo, also known as the Gemini, is a capa de capa from Naples that has recently expanded her operations to be a bit more international. After a short stint in Star City, she decided that Gotham was more to her liking. According to Paco and his friends, Edda is the main contact for the dirty dope that is turning people into monsters around town."


He pauses for a second to offer Barbara a glance. "Good job jamming the TV signals to get that PDA out by the way, the amount of red-tape to get something like that actually aired would have taken too long for how urgent this is."


"I had a program written out to do it anyway. It was just a matter of throwing the message together and tweaking it a little to make sure it aired on those new cable channels too," Barbara says, and leans forward a bit in her chair, reading over the file. "I'll start digging a bit deeper from the Clocktower. Any idea on a motive for this? Does she have connections to Langstrom, or do you think this is a distraction for something bigger?"


"I'm planning on interviewing Langstrom tonight, but this doesn't seem like his MO," Batman says before turning back towards the screen, closing the video loop and typing in a few notes to himself. "The dealers I talked to seemed iffy on if Durgo herself knew her supply was dirty, but I find it hard to believe she wouldn't. Find out what you can about her operation, and specifically where the dope is coming from. Also, there is this." Another screen pops up, an invitation for a masquerade ball coming up at the Grand Regal Tavern, one of the more swanky clubs in town. "Bruce Wayne got an invitation to this event. Did some digging, found out Durgo is one of the controlling partners of the location. Think you could forge another invitation for Cassandra and maybe one of your Birds?" A short pause later, he offers in way of round-about apology, "I'd have you join me, but the Commissioner's daughter might raise alarms among the mafiosos. Nothing personal."


"No problem. Bring me a doggy bag if the food's good," she jokes, and mentally starts going over her Roster. Helena + Mobsters... Hm, no, that would end badly. Zinda + Open Bar... badly but for different reasons. "Black Canary should be available." She really should be giving Dinah overtime pay at this rate. "I'll get the invites lined up. If you manage to get Cassandra into a dress, I expect photographic proof."


"She'll do it if I ask her to, if its part of the mission," he says, fighting the urge to grin...but just barely. "She's good, by the way. Probably breaks more bones than I'd like, but she knows how to keep things nonlethal and it certainly is raising my stock as a serious threat again. She makes a good bad cop." He swivels in his chair to face Oracle. "Of course, she doesn't hold a candle to the original," he amends, actually cracking a grin at that, but don't gasp; it is quickly gone.


"One more thing, and I know I don't have to tell you this, but be very careful when tracking down information on Durgo. Seems the Gemini nickname is something of a warning." Spinny-chair back around, a second video montage, this one a bit more graphic than the other. "Durgo was actually one of two identical twins, Edda and Maradona. Edda quickly established herself as the more successful of the pair, while Maradona was mostly sullen and self-absorbed. When the Durgo's father died, the family business was left solely in the care of his beloved daughter Edda." A few clicks later and a rather bloody picture of a decapitated body pops up on screen. "Which was good, because 'Maradona' ended up being very unfit for running the company soon after that. Edda was the one to report the found body, and ever since then she has never seemed the same. Violent. Angry. Sullen and self-absorbed." He allows the gravity of the situation sink in as he turns in his chair slowly again. "So, again, just for the sake of making myself clear: you and yours should be very, very careful when approaching 'Edda.'"


Barbara adjusts her glasses, making only the tiniest of faces at the gruesome scene. "I'll stick to the virtual approaching, then. Any chance either of them ever had finger prints on record from before Maradona's death?" she wonders. Identical twins have identical DNA, but fingerprints still differ. And, given that dental records appear to be out of the picture... Well, it seems to be the most obvious course of action. If one twin killed the other to replace her, there has to be /some/ evidence to be found.


"From what I can find, the investigation was a muddled affair. By the time the police were ready to question the living sister, she'd skip town. She's been skipping ever since, already creating her own vast fortune in case they put the breaks on the one that she already had. So yes, there is probably gangs of incriminating evidence. But getting the Gemini to stick still for long enought to actually be questioned is tough." Batman snarls slightly. "Again, one of the reasons Gotham was probably attractive. Feds and CIA have clear decided to let us kill ourselves. Same goes for Italian agents. And Gotham PD is so busy with the likes of Joker and Killer Croc, your old-fashioned drug lord seems passe by comparison."


A slight ding comes over the cave's loud speakers, followed by a cool, crisp English voice. "Sunset occurs in two minutes," the computer informs before another ding. Well that's new, as Batman rises and starts to stalk towards his car. "Time for patrol, apologizes for my briskness. If you have any more questions, you know how to reach me. I hope I gave you enough information to give you a head start."


"Of course, I'll get started on it as soon as I'm back in the tower. I'll just make a copy of your files on her before I go." Some part of her /does/ miss spending time in the cave, so she's not in any hurry to leave just because he is. "And I appreciate the ramps, by the way." There's a hint of a smile on her face when she says it. She knows he was thinking of her! She won't go telling anyone that he /can/ be thoughtful, of course, but she noticed.


Batman doesn't respond to the thanks; one of his greatest flaws on a personal level is showing and accepting gratitude. "Poke around as much as you like, take whatever you want, just don't mess with my desktop icons," he says, and sounds deathly serious. "Once your done, Alfred will happily show you out. Though he might want to chat you up first. He gets very excited when we have company that isn't here for a campaign donation." With that, he enters the batmobile and revs it up to life, screaming off into the night to defend the City from all who threaten her.

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