Summary: After Selina Kyle's charity shindig for the aid and rescue of big cats worldwide, Dr. Emile Dorian tests former GCPD Detective Renee Montoya... and hires her to do a little digging.
Location: Down the lane from the Gotham Grande
Participants: Tygrus (emitting Dorian), Renee Montoya
The amount of money in that room -- represented by personages, their checkbooks and their very fashion -- was just... astounding. Certainly former detective Renee Montoya was astounded; these were /not/ 'her kind,' and if she relaxed a little when she started talking, she also attributes that to the aid of some fine champagne. There's no telling how much money went toward the support of big cats this evening. Hundreds of thousands just from the most visible parts of the auction, let alone the silent aspect and other deals made. As Renee could not contribute to that, she simply milled around on the periphery, sampling food and drink she might never taste again. At some point she joined a few smokers on a balcony, made a few quips and comments about sports -- baseball being a great equalizer among the classes -- and after a few wistful moments, she takes her leave.
With a headache accompanying a mild buzz, she walks off, a hand fumbling in a pocket for car keys. The tuxedo'd Latina then chuckles at herself; she knew better. She knew she might get tipsy, and she knew she couldn't drive /that/ old, beat-up thing to the party just to have the valet sneer at her. She remembers now that she took a cab -- and at least made it a handsome Lincoln, not the yellow variety. So she turns to walk to an area where she can actually flag one down; it'll be a bit of a walk from /this/ high-society corner of the city. At least it's a nice night. For Gotham, anyway.
Dr. Emile Dorian, is in Gotham for the first time in 13 years. He has come to this event looking for the future Ms. Science Project to be the mother of the future super-race he is creating. He is dressed in a tuxedo suit that is fresh from the tailor and cuts quite the figure for a man of his age. He still walks with his cane, topped with a gold cats eye. His list of suspects include many women at the party. After all it was an affair in the support of cats and where better to find a Catwoman? One of the Doctor's suspects, a certain X-police woman turned detective is spotted walking away from the event on foot. How odd.. The doctor was just leaving himself but like all men of Genius he is adaptable. As he slides into the back of his rented black limo he presses the button on the intercom, "Garth, pull along side the young lady walking home ahead of us. I would like to offer her a ride." from the other side of the blackened driver's shield the henchman says, "Yes, Doctor."
The car drives forward as if to leave but as it passes Renee walking it slows and Dr. Dorian rolls down the window from the opposite side of the passenger compartment, "Ms. Montoya? Would you care for a lift home?" he offers so very politely.
The swish of cars rolling by is not entirely unfamiliar; others are leaving the charity event, too. Doubtless some give Renee a quizzical look from behind their tinted windows. Why is someone in a nice tux /walking/? What? Oh, it's her. No surprise then... and so on and so forth. Maybe Renee only imagines some of these conversations. But she turns her mind from them to focus on the good of the evening: Amazons. Yes. Amazons. She'll be traveling to New York City in the near future and reading some Themysciran literature and...
...and there's a limo slowing to a crawl near her. For one moment, just one moment, she has this hopeful, irrational thought. She draws up her shoulders a bit, and prepares some kind of confident line for Kate Kane. Only it's not Kate Kane who addresses her. It's some guy, some older guy. Renee stops walking, and peers. Now she's the quizzical one.
"Uh," she finally says at length, so very eloquently. "Don't think I'm really your type." A pause. "No offense."
The doctor with his wavy red-hair, slightly freckled face and charming eyes smiles at the detective, "You are correct. You are in no way my type. My name is Dr. Emile Dorian, I am a genetics researcher and I am in need of your services." the doctor, always to the point, closes his hand over the top of his cane, "As a detective." he clarifies just incase she is still on her other train of thought, "Please, join me. I will have my driver take you home while I make my proposal for your employment." the driver in question is a very large man wearing a trench coat and a oddly large hat which makes his features hard to make out in the front of the car with the lack of light.
The door unlocks itself next to the detective, "I assure you, I mean you no harm." the doctor says as he sits there waiting for the lady to let herself in.
Charity ball. Scientist. Probably has quite a few bucks. Renee has had a handful of drinks. Once the initial 'creepy older guy' assumption is put to rest, Renee rubs the back of her neck a little sheepishly, then acquiesces.
"Sure, okay." Curiosity and booze and greed. Great combo. She sends a look up and down the street, guesstimates the time in case something /does/ go wrong (she is still a pessimist after all) and then climbs in. Upon shutting the door she glances at it to see if it auto locks. "How can I help you, Doctor?" No need to introduce herself, it seems.
Once inside the car the doctor presses the button on the intercom and says, "Garth, take us too." then he allows Renee to say where she wants to go before he continues, "I am a researcher who focuses on cats." he says which explains his interest in the gala. "I had a rare gold Egyptian statue of Bast in my collection. Unfortunately, my security was not adequate and the thief known as "Catwoman" stole it. What she does not know is that in the base of that statue is a mini-disk with five years of my research on it. Five years of my research that, should it fall into the wrong hands, could end up being used to create all manner of horrible things." the doctor explains.
The door does not lock, the doctor does not seem hostile or shifty or even nervous. He is smooth and calm as if he is king of the earth, "As long as she is unaware of what she has there is no real danger but should she discover it..." he says and reaches up to rub the side of his temple. "I only wished to cure illnesses not to be responsible for what could happen if this goes bad. " the doctor lies, he lies very well.
Renee rattles off some cross-streets; she does not, however, give her address. In fact, that particular location is a whole neighborhood over from where she actually lives. Or 'lives.' She kinda moves around a bit. It's not a great part of town, and only belatedly does Montoya aside, "Hope you don't mind having the paint chipped."
But then she settles back into her seat. It can't be said she's at /ease/, but she's listening. A little adrenaline, coursing through her because of the new- and strange-ness of the encounter, gives her a little clarity. There's a little snort for Catwoman's exploit; will that woman /never/ change? She's probably the sanest of all of Gotham's rogues, and yet she, too, is obsessed...
"Probably not," Renee assures. "She's not really known for technological acumen. Nothing suggested she was a scientist of any stripe." After a pause she adds, "Did you report this? I mean, I'm not with the force anymore..."
The doctor does his best to look uncomfortable adjusting the cufflinks on his tux to add to the effect, "Genetic research is a field of great potential to man kind. It promises to unlock cures for illness, aging, birth defects, and most human frailty however it is highly protested and regulated. Due to the legalities of the matter some of my research could be seen as criminal. Quite harmless I assure you, but still legally criminal. Just last year I created a serum which could be tailored to a person's DNA and allow them to re-grow fingers, possibly even arms and legs but I am not allowed to research beyond theory legally. Even animal research is forbidden in some areas of science. I feel the benefits to man far outweigh the pompous whims of politicians so I do my research hoping that one day society will evolve to the point it is willing to embrace the full range of scientific possibility." It's a very nice way of saying he plays with the laws of nature, "If someone of less upstanding morals were to acquire and use my research the world could be changed forever."
Presumably Dorian just went out on quite the limb to report this to Renee; she /could/, after all, climb out of the car, make a call to an old friend, and have Gordon, or Sawyer, or Bullock, anyone really, start to investigate this guy. But Gotham is a strange place, and Renee, a changed woman. Maybe there never was black and white, only shades of grey. And even the heroes are dark in /this/ city.
"So you came to an ex-cop of less upstanding morals," she summarizes, unable to help but grimace a little.
She turns her head to look out the window as Gotham slides by, expensive mansions' acreage fading away to handsome townhouses, then coops, and eventually brownstones and tight-packed brickface interspersed with the neon of 24-hour convenience stores. You won't find anyone else in a tux around /here/. Not even for a wedding.
Dr. Dorian says, "Of course, if it would make you feel more comfortable. I would be glad to pay you to not only find Catwoman but to publicly expose her for what she is, a thief" he says, "As long as the disk is returned or destroyed I don't care. I actually like what she does to protect endangered species and would normally applaud her for her success. However in this case she is putting herself and everyone else in danger. I do not want her harmed, I want to make that clear. I do not want vengeance, only the safe return of the disk. If I knew someone who was good enough to steal it back I would hire them but I'm a scientist and the only criminals I know are the men who set the price for this suit. " the doctor says as he dusts off a pant leg. "But I digress. It is imperative my research is secured. Can I count on your assistance detective?" the doctor asks.
The humor does not go ignored; Renee snorts again, even if her gaze is still on the familiar sight of Gotham itself. Even as various buildings pass by she organizes them in terms of distance from her own shabby apartment, the cases that made the biggest news, known dwelling places of known criminal elements, and so on. Dorian called her 'detective,' and she's back in the mindset, making order of the chaos of Gotham City.
"This is a woman who's broken out of police custody on multiple occasions," she says, slowly. "She's out there and /Batman/ hasn't been able to put her in Arkham." Maybe she doesn't deserve that place, but still. "I'll see if I can't tail her somehow." Or flush her, she thinks. "If she /does/ discover the disk she might sell it so she can can buy some tigers or something. That's not worth it." After a pause she looks back to Dorian, her expression serious. "It's just 'Renee.'"
Reaching into the inside vest pocket of his coat, Emile pulls out a freshly printed card and offers it to, "Renee, please call me Emile." he says though he hates the idea of being so familiar with the hired help. He needs her, for now. He offers the card to the lady, "I will of course, have you followed so that you will be in no danger." and it goes without saying 'or sell the disk yourself' "But I assure you I will not interfere in your work. You won't even know my man is around." Maybe he's just bluffing?
Well. The former detective is probably okay with 'Ms. Montoya.' It didn't freak her out earlier, after all. Mainly the distinction is that she's no longer an official detective. She nods slightly to the appelation, however, even if she's not inclined to go by first names herself.
Taking the card, the Latina glances it over, then shifts on her seat to tuck it in a pocket.
"Uh. Please don't." At least she is cautiously polite. Hell, a day or two ago -- Jesus, just a day ago? -- she /politely/ asked a cat burglar (not Catwoman, though) to turn around give herself up. "I know what I'm doing, or I'd like to think that, anyway. I'm licensed to carry and it's easy to pull the trigger in this town. More importantly, your man might tip off Catwoman. If I'm going to screw up, I'll do it on my own lack of merit."
As the car rolls to a stop the doctor says, "I do respect someone who wants to stand on their own two feet. A quality lacking in far too many people these days." he compliments but doesn't promise not to have her stalked either, "I believe this is your stop?" he says. "I'll contact you in three days. Do you think that will be sufficient to get a lead on her?" as he reaches into his pocket and takes out a checkbook. The same one he used to make a donation to the charity, "Five hundred a day?" he offers, "I'm not sure what the going rate for this kind of thing is. " he admits.
Renee does a few quick calculations. She's been paid about that, before. A little less, actually, considering the term was for one week. But this... this will require a lot of running around. A lot of 5-Hour Energy and take-out, too, probably. She slides a hand over her face quickly at the thought of how quickly she'll be sleep-deprived. Well. Maybe her change of schedule, her recent getting-over-jet-lag, will wind up working in her favor.
"Sure, fifteen hundred as a deposit, two thirds of it back if I can't find anything." Renee is pretty sure the guy can handle a $500 loss. Even a $1.5K one, but it's a bit professional to offer some compensation. "Seriously," she says as Dorian writes. "No tagalong. I'll be watching over my shoulder instead of having eyes out for Catwoman."
The doctor writes the check and rips it off for Renee in a perfectly straight line. He makes sure not one little tooth of the perforation is out of place. He says, "I give you my word. I will send neither man nor woman to watch over you. Know, however, if you fail in this the consequences to the world could be catastrophic. If you find a lead and you need to hire your own people contact me and I will be glad to fund it. As long as it stays private." the doctor explains.
Renee glances the check over as well, and holds it up to boot. It's a limo. There's light. "/And/ I have rent to pay," she says dryly. "Alright. I'll contact you." Presumably she doesn't want the distraction of others contacting her during her little mission. "Hopefully I won't let anyone down."
Smiling as he tucks the checkbook back into his pocket, "Think positive detective." he says as he looks forward and puts his hands on his cane tip again as if he is royalty dismissing her with his lack of facing her any more, "One must always strive for the best but never expect perfection. You are, only human." the doctor says and there is more meaning to 'only human' than one would think. "I have faith you will do your job well. After all, you're a cat-person." the Doc says as he waits for her to exit his vehicle. Someone is certainly use to having people do what he wants them to when he wants them to.
Renee is used to service. Serve and protect, at any rate. She is also -- sadly -- accustomed to being treated like the blue-collar minority she is, so there's a faint smirk, more amused than anything else, at Dorian's arrogant demeanor. It... probably does not bother her so much since he admits to needing her help.
"Right," she murmurs. "Cat person. 'Night then, Doc." The car door opens; air conditioning is traded off for some warmer summer night air. "Thanks for the lift..."
Dorian says, "Good luck, Renee. Have faith, all good things happen in time." still looking forward as he taps his cane on the floor of the car. Then the electric window rolls up as the car pulls away. She didn't seem like she was cat woman. She didn't seem at all surprised by the false accusations of theft. She also seemed to lack the self-esteem to be the woman worthy of what the Doctor has in mind. Unfortunate for Renee the doctor thinks. He has so much to offer if he can only find that one women who would be perfect for his creation...
He will find Catwoman!
Renee probably dodged a bullet there, didn't she? With the check and the business card firmly tucked into a pocket, she turns away from the curb and starts to walk. There are a few nighttime pedestrians and teenage toughs about, strolling or stoop-sitting; her tux earns an ironic wolf-whistle and probably a few less than kind epitaphs regarding her sexual orientation. These net a 'Yeah, and?' expression.
Shaking her head, she turns toward a nearby apartment building. Oh, it's not her own. She just knows how shoddy the locks are; sometimes one can slip into the halls with but a credit card. Or, in Renee's case... a library card. Juuust in case the good Doctor really was watching. Maybe not a perv, but he did seem kinda creepy. Maybe it's that whole 'playing God with DNA manipulation' thing...