Banzai Costume
Katherine Hana Li spin_kick_snap
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Baltimore, Sunday Night
Banzai rarely patrolled Sunday nights, taking the night off to rest and prepare for the upcoming week, but since she'd bailed on patrolling on Friday, it seemed only fair to make up for it tonight instead. Crime around the club and various campuses would be lower, but there were still plenty of drug deals, muggings, and various other, more dangerous crimes for her to stop instead. And it wasn't like Banzai was going to miss spending extra time manhandling drunk idiots into cabs and breaking up fights in alleys over stupid bullshit the participants couldn't even remember four steps away from the club itself.

The Ukranian mafia had all but vanished from the city over the past few months; apparently losing the Butcher was enough to convince them that Baltimore wasn't worth the effort. In a way, Banzai almost missed them; they were good practice for when she'd be going up against the Seventeens in LA eventually. Patrolling around Stanford (if she got in, please God let her get in) probably wasn't going to be all that much effort, so she was already making plans to portal down to LA proper at least once a month to get in a proper patrol.

Spotting Jewels, one of the working girls that was part of Banzai's loose confederation of informants, Banzai swung down from the rooftop to land on light feet nearby. Always good to check in, see if Jewels had heard of anything going down, make sure that no one was bothering her, pass along money and supplies to stay in Jewels' good graces, all that good stuff.

It felt good to get out and patrol. For all her speeches about wanting to do good for the people around her and make the world a better place, Banzai had to admit that the real reason she ran around in rainbows with a bokken on her back and rope darts in her belt was a lot more selfish. What could she say?

She loved this.


2016-03-13 09:25 am (UTC) (Link)

Not all days could be hang-out-with-friends-and-get-laid days-- and you know what, that was fine. Sometimes Dante just needed to be out somewhere by himself, getting in trouble somewhere people wouldn't remember about later. He'd found himself wandering down here a couple of times before, and not usually to get laid. He didn't generally need to do that. But he was familiar with the strippers and sex workers of Limbo City - some of the few people who had, for whatever few seconds in his life, given something approaching a shit.

Besides, he still had some leftover money from the night with Ada and Isabela to pass around. Charitable, or whatever.

So he wandered into the alleyway with a casual step, not the jittery motions of most of the guys who came through here.

Edited at 2016-03-13 09:38 am (UTC)


2016-03-13 09:42 am (UTC) (Link)

Jewels had just given Banzai news about a probable turf war between two pimps and their assorted hangers-on when Kathy heard the sound of footsteps in the alley. Nodding at Jewels, she prepared to bounce back up to the roof and leave the woman to her business--at least until Jewels spun around and squealed, "Dante?! That you, honey?"

Banzai froze, her normally graceful bounce turning into a stumbling hop. "Dante?" she echoed, confused.


2016-03-13 09:47 am (UTC) (Link)

Dante had had his hand raised in greeting while walking towards Jewel, but now he came to a stop halfway there and looked up. "Kathy?" he called. "You making friends?"


2016-03-13 09:57 am (UTC) (Link)

Banzai winced and facepalmed. "Really, Dante?" she demanded. "Really?"

"Kathy, huh?" Jewels asked, looking amused. "Honey, that sounds so...wholesome. You sure you should be out here talkin' to the likes of me?"

Yup, gonna murder Dante later. Putting that on the to-do list right now. "Banzai is just fine when I'm out here," she said, loud enough for Dante to hear.


2016-03-13 10:01 am (UTC) (Link)

Wasn't Dante's fault the secret identity thing was profoundly stupid, Kathy. C'mon.

"She already knows you know me," he said, rolling his eyes. "Who cares what your name is?"


2016-03-13 10:08 am (UTC) (Link)

Not when vigilantism was illegal, it wasn't! Or when you were going up against organized crime! Which, okay, she wasn't anymore, but she had been!

"Uhh, I do," Banzai said, raising her hand. Jewels inexpertly hid a smile and mouthed the word 'wholesome' at Dante again. "You know, for reasons."

"I think it's a lovely name," Jewels said. "The preacher's daughter in my hometown was named Kathy, too."

See, Dante! Banzai was never going to live this down!


2016-03-13 10:13 am (UTC) (Link)

"Ah, trust me," Dante said, grinning. "You don't wanna judge that book by its title."

He closed the gap between him and Jewels.


2016-03-13 10:20 am (UTC) (Link)

"Oh really?" Jewels asked, drifting closer to Dante and batting her eyes at him. Dante didn't seem likely to ever take her up on her sales pitch, but was always good for some harmless flirting. "Do tell, honey. Our Banzai hates talking about herself."

"Uhh, still here," Banzai pointed out. "There's a reason I keep my identity a secret. More than one, even!"

Like she didn't need anyone coming after her, interested in figuring out how she could do the things she did and not willing to take her 'No, thanks, I don't wanna be a lab rat' as an answer.


2016-03-13 10:23 am (UTC) (Link)

"I'd tell you," Dante said, shooting a grin up at 'Banzai' just so she knew that yes, he was aware she was still there, "but I'm pretty sure I'd be ruining my own night some way up the line from here."

Take from that what you will, Jewels.


2016-03-13 10:30 am (UTC) (Link)

From Jewels' smile, she most definitely was. "Oooh, I see," she said, delighted. "Is that why I can never tempt you?" Yeah, she liked just being able to talk and flirt with Dante and not have to worry about business getting in the way with him, but shh. She had a reputation to maintain. "Explains that face when I called her wholesome. Though--Banzai, honey, I can see you blushin' below your mask."

"No you can't," Banzai muttered. Bright red. "How do you two know each other anyway?"

Yes, it was a transparent attempt to change the subject. So?


2016-03-13 10:35 am (UTC) (Link)

Dante gave a casual shrug, sliding his hand into his pocket and taking out the wallet he'd gotten from Ezra months ago. "Sometimes I drop by here to chat," he said. "You don't wanna know what kinda stories Jewels here can tell."

He took out a couple of bills and held them out for her. "Friends of mine went on a fishing trip a couple of blocks over," he said, by means of explanation. "We're starting a sex worker charity."


2016-03-13 10:43 am (UTC) (Link)

"Oh, I've heard some," Banzai said.

"Naw, honey, you heard the ones I tell to try to run off the religious do-gooders who just want to save me from my life of sin. Dante here gets the fun ones. He's the kind of guy who can appreciate them."

"Oh," Banzai said, faltering. "But I didn't run off."

"Nope. Took me awhile to decide if you were overeager or just stupid." Jewels didn't seem particularly apologetic about this, either. "Then you came around and stopped that handsy fella without tryin' to turn it into a sermon about mendin' my ways or get me to go to the cops and I realized you were all right." At Banzai's grin, she added, "Still a bit on the wholesome side, whatever y'all two get up to."

Banzai coughed, ignoring that last comment. "You know the funny thing?" she asked Dante. "I don't think I can narrow down who your friend is to below three or four different people."

"Aww, are you a bad influence on our little superhero here?"


2016-03-13 10:50 am (UTC) (Link)

"I'm a really good influence," Dante argued. "She's better when she lets her hair down."

He shrugged. "Still runs around the city dressed like a rainbow ninja, pulling stupid shit, but there's only so much I can pull off."


2016-03-13 10:53 am (UTC) (Link)

"You mean saving people and stopping crime?" Banzai demanded, hands on her hips, eyes narrowed behind the mask. "That's not exactly stupid shit, Dante. Hell, Jewels here helps me!"

So take that!


2016-03-13 10:56 am (UTC) (Link)

"Yeah, whatever."

Dante shoved his wallet back into his pocket. "Hope you're having fun, Jewels."


2016-03-13 10:58 am (UTC) (Link)

"She won't pay for sex, but she pays for information," Jewels said, shrugging. "Hey, what? Does helping her out disqualify me from the sex worker charity or what?"

"How do you two know each other anyway?" Banzai asked. "I can barely get you to share your pizza with me!"


2016-03-13 11:05 am (UTC) (Link)

"I still have the actual money right here," Dante said, holding up the bills. "You were too busy yapping to take it, so..."

He was still holding it out for her again.

"I came through here a couple of months back, when I was trying to figure out Baltimore," he said. "I guess Jewels here just has a thing for lost cats."


2016-03-13 11:14 am (UTC) (Link)

Yeah, Jewels wasn't making that mistake again. She snatched the money from his hand with a deftness that even Ada would appreciate. "Only handsome ones, honey," she said, most of her attention on counting the bills.

"Well, next time, feel free to brag that you know the famous Banzai," Banzai muttered, feeling distinctly odd. The two halves of her life were crashing together and even if Dante couldn't care less about her superhero alter-ego, it still felt very bizarre.

"Cause that would be smart, especially while you're running around, pissing off Europeans with big guns," Jewels snarked, tucking the bills in her getup somewhere.


2016-03-13 11:18 am (UTC) (Link)

"Those cleared out, didn't they?"

Yeah, Dante had a hunch why. "Not that it wouldn't be funny if somebody tries to kidnap me or whatever," he said.


2016-03-13 11:29 am (UTC) (Link)

"Yeah," Jewels said, flicking her eyes to Banzai. "Their big, fuck-off enforcer got his ass handed to him and then arrested."

"Technically, I can't claim all the credit for that," Banzai said, sheepish. "A lot of that was Eliot. They had history." She also eyed Dante, but more because of that kidnapping comment. YOU GOT KIDNAPPED ENOUGH, THANK YOU. "Yeah, I can just imagine how fun it would be for them," she snorted, smart enough not to bring up Limbo City when she didn't have to. "Lost cat has claws. Black, white, and rebellious ones."

Jewels looked confused but was willing to let that comment slide. They had inside jokes, wasn't that adorable. "Still, honey, I don't exactly go around telling folks how chummy I am with the neighborhood superhero. Seems like that's a good way to stop being effective for you."


2016-03-13 11:31 am (UTC) (Link)

Eh, being kidnapped by a bunch of humans in over their head would be a cakewalk compared to what Dante was used to. The only problem would be making sure he didn't hurt anybody permanently.

"They'd probably think you were a direct pipeline to Superball over here," Dante said. "Which'd have its own advantages, but probably not enough to make up for people getting skittish."

But, you know. Whatever.


2016-03-13 11:36 am (UTC) (Link)

"Superball?" Jewels was cracking up now. "I wish I had said something earlier, just to know all of this sooner."

"Fuckin' come on, Glowstick!" Banzai said, aggrieved. "You are killing me, here."


2016-03-13 11:39 am (UTC) (Link)

"I'm sorry," Dante said, smirking. "Am I ruining your dark and gritty rep?"


2016-03-13 11:47 am (UTC) (Link)

Jewels wasn't even pretending not to laugh at this. She only laughed harder as Banzai sputtered. "The rainbow terror that bounces at night," she wheezed.

She looked a lot younger when she laughed. Really laughed, not her usual cynical chuckle.

"You both suck," Banzai grumbled.

"Hell yeah I do, honey," Jewels said, still practically giggling. "Why? Wanna know my rates?"


2016-03-13 11:48 am (UTC) (Link)

Dante grinned, parking his back against the wall. "And you know I do," he said. "But not right now."

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