H U B C I T Y , A M E R I C A:
May 13th, 2019 - 11:43 PM |Ted Kord's Penthouse Suite|Uptown
It was late, and Ted Kord was just about beat from a long day of science and occasional business meetings. He couldn't send Tracey to every one of them on his behalf and still actually run and own the company after all, even if she had a better head for business. Still, it had been an exhausting day either way, Ted was grateful he hadn't had to put any Blue Beetle duties ontop of it and was ready to just go to bed and start over in the morning.
Riiiiiight after a quick midnight snack.
Ted crept down to his kitchen and opened up the fridge, rummaging around for a bit, only to hear someone rattle something behind him in the dark. Ted grabbed up the nearest object that looked like it might serve as a weapon and whirled around to confront his attacker.
Unfortunately for Ted, the closest object at hand happened to be a full-sized smoked salami he'd grabbed from the meat drawer."Stay back! Whoever you are I'm warning you, I'm well armed!"
Ted yelled, waving the cured meat product ominously at the darkness.
Damn. He was hoping he was being more quiet. It wasn't like his goal was to hide from Kord, but then again he would've preferred to scare the daylights out of him with his sudden appearance. Then again, that seemed to be the effect he had by accidentally bumping into that table.
Well, better to step out of the shadows."Well that's-*cough*-not very nice, Beetle,"
Question said, limping towards Ted Kord. "... I could really use your help, if the blood's not telling."
Ted's initial reaction to a bleeding, faceless man in his penthouse asking for help was to drop the sausage and offer whatever help he could. "Of course. I don't have any equipment here but there's an emergency medical bay in the- wait, Beetle?"
He froze for a second, as the words sunk in, then smacked his forehead. "Oh COME ON! You get past my security systems AND you already know my secret identity?! I mean, I guess it can wait until we're sure you aren't hemorrhaging internally but how is that fair?!"
Without waiting for an answer, the frustrated Ted Kord started tapping on his wristwatch, summoning the Bug out of storage and instructing it to enter Stealth Mode and fly to meet them at Ted's balcony at maximum safe speed."So, did you just come here for free healthcare and crap coffee? Because I should probably warn you, technically none of my degrees are medical and my espresso machine turned sentient last week and keeps demanding a pay raise. Never bring your prototypes into the kitchen."
He arched an eyebrow at the faceless detective, pulling up a chair for him and then busying himself throwing away the ruined food/improvised baton.
Question collapsed into the chair, grunting in pain as he slowly massaged his temples. "It wasn't hard, Beetle,"
Question replied to Ted's earlier comment, a hint of insufferable smugness creeping into his tone, "Just had to look at the financial history of Kord industries and recall the times you've gotten new gadgets.""... But more importantly, I need help for more than just this."
He gestured to his wounds and the blood soaking his clothing. "Not sure if you know, but I had a run-in over a decade ago with a maniac calling himself the Banshee... I thought he was dead, killed in a bus crash transferring him to Blackgate... Guess I was wrong."
The faceless vigilante looked into Ted's eyes. "I can't exploit any of his old weaknesses. He upgraded his suit, too, has a sonic attack fitting of his namesake. I need help for more than just the wounds, Beetle. I need your help in taking him down."
Ted almost went into a not very heroic sulk at the Question's implication that figuring out his identity was easy. He'd have to remember to obfuscate his purchases more when it came to designing his gear. So far he'd relied on the excuse that he was doing work on advanced R&D prototypes and that was...well, technically true. A lot of the tech he'd developed for use as the Beetle got further developed and redesigned for future mass production. But the fact that he'd been this careless seriously threw him for a loop.
But what the faceless vigilante said next changed everything. In spite of how serious the situation was, Ted could feel himself grinning and holding in chuckles, positively giddy and a little incredulous."You need my help? On like...a case? A case-case, catching a criminal, not just patching you up or fixing your laptop or like, building stuff for you? I don't believe it! I can't believe it! It's just...you're The Question! You've been in the hero game since I graduated High School! Half the criminals in the Hub are afraid to admit you exist! You peer into the hearts of men and judge them, and then if you don't like what you find you beat them up or melt off their faces! I mean I don't believe you really do that but they do! One time, I sneaked up on a bank robber who just thought I might be you and he literally crapped his pants! You really need me on this one?!"
Ted paused from his hero-worshiping rant, sobering up as he considered the implications."Oh, crap. You really need me on this one. Right. Well, I already have some ideas for how to deal with a sonic weapon. Don't worry, we'll get this guy!"
Ted tried to sound more positive than he felt, though planning out a design that could baffle the banshee at least prevented him from outright panicking or sinking into despair.
Question couldn't help but feel his self esteem inflate at Beetle's gushing. Well, he supposed he was
pretty badass... But of course, he cut off that train of thought; arrogance only leads to weakness.
As Beetle calmed himself and reassured Question that they would catch the Banshee, Q felt himself relax, if only a little. Sure, he might not have been able to catch the Banshee himself what with his lack of high-tech gadgetry, but with Beetle's help and resources they could easily take down the seemingly resurrected villain. "Nice to hear your enthusiasm."
Standing up, the Question took a moment to steady himself, before rolling his shoulders to relieve the tension in them. "Before we do anything though, I'm... Definitely gonna need at least some painkillers for my injuries. The Banshee did a number on me."
He looked around the penthouse, who knows for what."Well, every superhero has a secret base, and I'm going to assume you're smart enough to not hide an entrance to your secret base in your apartment. So, the question is... Where is that secret base?""I mean, one advantage of being so involved in helping to rebuild Hub City was setting up the occasional secret base. But when I can't reach them or if I need to get ready in a hurry..."
Right on cue, a giant, beetle-shaped airship descended to hover right outside the balcony on the other side of the kitchenette, dropped stealth mode and filled the dark room with blue light."...Then I prefer to travel in style! Bwah-hahaha!~"
As blue light filled the room, the Question turned to look at the source, and his jaw nearly dropped in awe at the airship. He had heard about it, even seen it once or twice, but up close... It was breathtaking.
And he wasn't feeling jealous. Not at all."... You really know how to make a guy feel inadequate, eh?"