16176/Lakeside Visit

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Lakeside Visit
Date of Scene: 25 October 2023
Location: Lake - Wayne Estate
Synopsis: Gabby visits Damian and meets Goliath. They discuss the past and give the other a second chance.
Cast of Characters: Damian Wayne, Gabby Kinney

Damian Wayne has posed:
While Damian is not going to bother the lakehouse - after all, Stephanie and Dick practically live there, that does not mean that Damian won't take advantage of the grounds around the lake.

Settled outside of the lake, Damian is currently going through a few exercises, getting in his practice as he waits. Waiting for?

He had sent a message to Gabby, asking if she would meet him out there. After their talk the other night, he felt there was some other things that deserved to be brought to life. Especially as things had gone last time.

A pair of training swords have been sent out in case she'd rather have practice, but there is also a small picnic with Alfred made sandwiches, bags of chips, fruit and fresh tea.

A pair of fishing poles are set up with bells at the edge of the lake, the line gently bobbing in the water, waiting for a bite.

Gabby Kinney has posed:
Gabby Kinney had been on the grounds a small handful of times before, but usually just up to the house other than that one time she accidentally wandered into the rougher, more woodsy areas on the finge of the property when she first met Damian. The lake though? That's not too hard to find. Her bike was parked at the mansion and her nose led the way toward 'water' which was an easy enough jog across the perimeter until she arrives finding Damian doing some warm up exercises.

"Hey, D," she calls out using the single-letter 'nickname' that they sometimes used when speaking of the Bat Family members so that they didn't outright out them over coms. For those who knew, they knew. She's grinning a bit as she surveys the array of 'things to do' set out with her gaze surprisingly lingering on the fishing poles.

"You fish? You know, for all the years I lived around a lake that is the one thing I never did. Had a kid there that could talk to fish and no one wanted to mess with them." There's a long pause as she considers with eyes narrowing. "Actually he could speak with most animals, never sure if he was messing with us on the fish or not but it wasn't as if we could check."

Damian Wayne has posed:
When Gabby arrives, Damian finishes up the the rest of his stretching exercise that he was working on. A smile blossoms on his face and he offers. "Fishing is pretty relaxing. And well, serves two purposes in this case. Already was kind enough to pack a meal, but I have a friend that appreciates fresh fish." he explains.

"Was he always trying to talk you out of catching them? Because it totally sounds like what someone with that power would try to do to troll his friends." he points out with an amused smirk. Making his way over to Gabby, he gives her a hug. Not a terribly long one, but but the quick embrace a few nights before. "So, yeah. Promised I'd talk to you on things." he admits.

It is just then that one of the bells clatters. Pulling back, his eyes are wide in excitment. "Got one!"

Gabby Kinney has posed:
Gabby Kinney flashes a grin of her own when he steps in to give her a hug. Getting hugs was something she always enjoyed but from the Bat family members it was hit or miss. Even Phoebe didn't always like being touched. It's returned with a quick embrace as she chuckles quietly over the thought of being trolled. "He probably was messing with us. It's not like he was Namor or anything."

When the bell jingles her eyes widen with surprise that blossoms into another grin. Damian's excitement is catching a bit. "How do you get it in?"

She had the general idea but again, never had fished, so she heads over to the poles to watch what Damian does with curious interest.

Damian Wayne has posed:
When Gabby turns to follow Damian, the young man's excitement only grows. Reaching to where the two poles are set up, he gives the rod a small pull. "Yeah. This one's pretty big..."

He starts to retract the line, and just as it gets to where the large bass is breaking the surface and starts to angrilly flop, splashing water around, he steps back, taking Gabby's hand. "Step a bit back he encourages."

His fingers go up to his mouth, spreading his lips and he sharply whistles!

Seconds past.

Damian is looking off in the direction of where one would know the cave is, if they were inclined. He grip on Gabby's hand loosens, as if worried he'd crossed a line.

More time passes and then... just over the horizon, a pair of red wingtips on the horizon and a /SKREE/!

Damian isn't showing a mote of fear.

Gabby Kinney has posed:
There were times that Gabby was just pure... Gabby. Times where she wasn't a trained assasin, where she wasn't a mutant or an Outsider, where she wasn't a JLD leader. While the moments seemed further and further apart at her current age she hadn't given up the pure unadulterated joy at seeing something new and wonderful for the first time.

Damian gets to see her reaction unfold as he urges her to step back holding her hand. Curious and with an edge of anticipation that slowly bubbles into pure excitement when it's clear they've set up an offering for... SOMETHING... that Damian was calling.

Her green eyes widen, pupils dialating to focus on the approaching red flier even as her enhanced hearing picks up nuances of that SKREE that regular human ears might not hear. The little echoes and bounces and the just-out-of-hearing-range notes.

She begins to bounce on the balls of her feet with excitement until her hand strays from Damian's to throw both arms into the air with a little "EEEE!" of her own. "What is it who is it what's it's name!?" She prattles even before Goliath arrives fully.

Damian Wayne has posed:
As it crests the trees, the first image that may come to mind is 'DRAGON'. A massive red wingspand, it's body is plush, not the wiry frame of a dragon. It does have that bright red color. Landig directly in front of Damian, it's clear the creatures face is smushed in and is more bat-like.

He wears a harness and heavy arm and upper arm covers, a nose ring and a chain. Immediately, it's nuzzling Damian for attenton, "You have a fish and company, Goliath!" he points out.

Now that the fish is grounded, Damian moves, cutting the line to remove the hook and taking it by the jaw, he hauls the bass to where Gabby it. "Let him smell you and then offer the fish. His name's Goliath. He's the story I promised to tell you on our next date." he explains.

Bass offered to Gabby.

Gabby Kinney has posed:
Gabby Kinney clasps her hands together when Goliath lands to greet Damian with NUZZLES. There's not an ounce of fear on her face or in her posture, either, in spite of how big he was. When Damian offers the fish to her she just grins so big it causes her scars to crease in reaction.

"Thank you," she gushes out in a quiet tone to Damian while taking the still squirming fish in both hands. Then she steps forward ducking her head down a bit so that Goliath could sniff at her hair since, well, her hands are full of fish. Of course the fish is kept held tight before it's offered up as well.

"Fishie?" She offers with a giddy little tone. "He's *awesome* Damian, where did you meet him?"

Damian Wayne has posed:
Goliath lowers down, almost to the same height as the kids, tail wagging as he sniffs Gabby. And then the fish. The first thing he goes after is the fish, snagging it into his maw and chewing it a few times before swallowing, and then he licks Gabby's face. She's a friend now.

Damian runs his hand on Goliath's side. "He'll take you for a flight when he's really comfortable." he says with a hint of pride.

But, with the story, he moves to sit at Goliath's feet. "It's not a good story. And if you lose all intrest in me after me, I won't blame you." he promises.

"When I turned thirteen, my Grandfater and Mother both realized that I would soon enter puberty. They wanted me to be purged of impure thoughts. Be it of friendships, or a romantic relationship."

"They sent me on a pilgrimage. A year of blood." At thirteen. "One of the objects they sent me after was a scepter that had belong to an assassin. Goliath's people guarded the scepter. I killed them all and recovered the scepter..."

"As I was preparing to leave, a tiny, kitten-like Bat Dragon arrived. He stood up to me. I could have killed it. Easily. Instead..." A hint of a tear shows up in one of Damian's eyes. "...he licked my nose. I brought him back. My grandfather ordered me to kill it. My mother allowed me to care for it as my own."

Gabby Kinney has posed:
The lick just earns a happy laugh from her as she reaches up to sink her fingers into his fur giving him a little scritchy-scritch while accepting the gesture. Nevermind it gives her a bit of a wet cheek and sticks up part of her hair. That was inconsequential. "Aww I'm glad you liked it! Good boy," she coos out before realizing that ... oh, right, she was supposed to be listening to Damian. To be fair Goliath was a pretty awesome distraction.

"Only if he wants to," she remarks about the flight before moving to sit down next to Damian as well to listen. There's a careful distance between her body and his though she's n ot trying to keep so much of a distance. Just... Personal space.

She does listen though in spite of the temptation to turn all of her attention back to the bat dragon. Though at mention of a tiny Goliath she looks up at him again with a little grin imagining how cute he must have been. He was still pretty cute.

But, the story ends, and she pulls her knees up to her chest to wrap her arms around her legs while listening.

"Why would I be upset at you? Out of all that you went through you chose life in the end, and on your own. That was YOUR choice it sounds like to keep him." Looking up again she adds a bit quieter, "Pretty awesome choice in this case."

Still, he'd shared a bit, and she has to regard him thoughtfully with a quiet gaze. "You don't know much about my history either, huh?"

Damian Wayne has posed:
Taking out his phone, he scrubs through and then shows the image of Damian with the baby Goliath. They were both so small. He notices the distances and there'a gentle move to close it, but not much. That is something to be decided upon togther. "My grandfather never wanted me to have interpersonal ties, much less a romantic relationship." he explains.

"So, when we were having a great time together, I realized that I had started to pull away from that and when that crowd showed up? I honestly worried that my grandfather had sent them to cause an issue on an actual date. So sometimes, cool choices. Sometimes dumb ones. Still working on it."

But yeah, since this is a two way street. "Only what little you shared with me. I'd like to know more." He pushes a sandwich over to her. "If you don't mind helping me with the food. It'd be terrible to let it go to waste."

Gabby Kinney has posed:
Gabby Kinney leans over a bit closer to see the picture he pulls out with a grin at the sight. "Aww you were both so cute! I kind of wish I had pictures of when I was younger. I mean I do, but not like..." Her voice trails off. Not sad, just not really sure how to explain it. When the sandwich is offered she accepts with a softer smile. "I'm highly food motivated," she quotes as if she were giving lessons on how to train a dog.

A corner is bitten off to chew before she pulls her own phone out to queue up a specific gallery folder. It's offered to Damian as she thumbs over it quickly. There's a picture of an older girl who looks exactly like Gabby--EXACTLY like her--but with no scars. Then there's another older girl who looks EXACTLY like Gabby, but is clearly albino. She, too, bears many scars. "These are a few of my sisters. Laura, and Bellona. I don't have pictures of the others. There were ten of us," she explains.

Damian Wayne has posed:
"I don't really have baby pictures. I was gestated in an artifical womb and trained." Damian admits as he looks over at Gabby's pictures, which moves the pair closer together as they share the meal.

"I see where you have gotten your beauty from." There's no tease in that sentence, just a quiet admiration between bites as he considers his own sandwich and leans against Goliah. "After the Year of Blood, Talia brought me to Gotham to lead the League of Assassins here. Instead, Father convinced me to join him instead."

Gabby Kinney has posed:
Gabby Kinney thumbs back to the picture of Laura to clarify between sandwich bites, "Yep, I got it from Laura," she explains simply. A little nudge of her elbow is given as she responds. "I'm her clone. We all are. She's our genetic donor's clone, but our DNA was stolen from hers to make us." Which meant she, too, was lab grown just like Damian.

The phone is placed back down within easy reach if either he or she wanted to look through more photos. For now she nods in understanding at his explaination. "Are you happy you made that choice? You seem happier, even if you're worried that your grandfather is trying to manipulate you still."

"I mean, I get that. You've been through a lot."

Damian Wayne has posed:
"I worry that my mother may do so someday. And that of course, my father is keeping a tight watch on me." Damian explains as he finishes off the rest of his sandwich. "To answer your question, though..."

"My decision has brought me into a larger family. It has opened me to meet others. It has allowed me the chance to consider romantic ties with those that may consider it." He shrugs his shoulders. "I have been through a lot and will continue to be. Hopefully, a partner would understand that. My father seems to have no issues with finding women of accepting such."

Gabby Kinney has posed:
"Family is good. So are friends, and being understood is great, too," Gabby agrees with a solemn nod as she shifts her weight back just a smidge leaning against Goliath. Unless he moves. It was so tempting though! He was fluffy and warm. And, after a moment of thought, she tips her weight a bit toward Damian to lean her arm up against him too. Between Goliath and Damian the chilly Autumn air wasn't so bad at all.

"I think your mother is trying to change. She's at least trying to find another path on her own," she puts forth speaking up on Talia's behalf just a little. "That doesn't make what she did to you right, of course. It can't be undone just... grown from."

"I think I understand more than you might think. My sisters and I were trained to kill, too, though they didn't care about any relationships we might have. Just that we worked together well as a team. We had each other, at least. Plus none of them were my parents so it's easier to just hate them for it."

"It's tougher when it's family that does it to you."

Damian Wayne has posed:
Goliath's only move is to nudge the pair of humans under his protection closer together. Damian glances up at him in a cross look, but when their arms pressed together, his hand rests over hers, but quite threading his fingers with hers.

"Mother has a lot of luggage. I am giving her the benefit of the doubt, but I know that it will take time to truly secure her trust." he explains.

"It is for me to remember and to grow and modify from, it is that simple. Father allows her in the home, I will use the time offered to me in his decision."

Though as she speaks of her family, his hand squeezes hers. "I know we both understand on having been trained to kill and to be more than the sum of what we were trained to be."

He considers her words and leans gently to her. "It's easier now to find those that can help stop the cycle. Though it is still hard." he agrees.

Gabby Kinney has posed:
Gabby Kinney reaches up with her free hand to pet the puffy chest fur of the demon bat behind them both as they basically get tucked in against him, and each other. The hand that Damian took hold of doesn't withdraw. Only after a moment does she twist her hand around to take hold of his, too, giving a squeeze in return.

"I was lucky. My sisters kept me from doing the worst of what they wanted. They protected me. You were on your own though." Another little squeeze is given as she considers what to say next, if anything.

"You're doing great though, you know? Phoebe speaks about you, and is proud of you, and even if they might tease I know your brothers are too." There's a pause before she adds, "Even Tim."

A pause comes from her with a sidelong glance from the corner of her eye. "So ... Basically you freaked out, had a panic attack and ran because you were afraid your grandfather was trying to mess with us and that's what happened back then?"

Damian Wayne has posed:
When she turns her hand over, his fingers slip into hers, and Damian chuckles. "Phoebe speaks highly of you too. She suggested so many ideas for dates to take you on. She never suggested introducing Goliath though. He is part of my family as well."

The squeeze of her hand in returned. "I was alone. There were times I made allies. And enemies. It is the nature of what I did. And why it is what I am tryiing to do now."

"I have come to appreciate my family. Brother and sisters. Even Tim. And Stephanie." That said with a playful bit of driness."

Though, they are back on that night. "Our other nights together had gone well, Gabby. When they were all suddenly there, my brain could only see it as a trap and I wanted to protect you from it. It was a mistake on my fault. I know your skills. But when were together, it was nice to feel normal. We saw animals together. We to the park. It had been going well. I had writtem in my journal that I had hoped we would..." he trails off at that for a breath. "...had perhaps advanced into a relationship." He shrugs. It is what it was. He can't take that back.

Gabby Kinney has posed:
Gabby Kinney inhales a slow, deep breath as she gathers her thoughts and thinks a long moment on her own feelings. "That was... Kind of a tough time for me. I'd just had a crush on someone I had been trying to show interest in, and he chose one of my half-sisters over me. I probably shouldn't have even been trying to date yet at that point when I met you."

"We did get along though, and we had fun, and... I was really kind of hurt when you ran off like that. Hurt, and confused as fuck," she admits in her oh-so-eloquent way of being perfectly blunt. "I appreciate the explanation even if it's a bit late." Here she pauses, perhaps awkwardly, letting out a puff of breath.

"I forgive you for it," comes out even though he hadn't really outright asked for forgiveness. Just understanding. Though maybe that's exactly why she offers it. "And I still kind of..." Words were not coming well to her tonight. The hand scritching Goliath falls away again in favor of staring to the side away from Damian.

"You're really cute you know? Handsome. Fit." It all comes out in a quick rush trying to find the right words but failing so she just goes through several of them. Then with a little, sort of grunt of frustration, she turns her head back toward him to duck down and rest her cheek to his shoulder hiding her face that way.

Another little mumble comes quieter, "And you smell really nice."

Damian Wayne has posed:
"I knew you were going through a lot. I was too. It comes with what and who we are, Gabby." Damian admits, but he is also hitting that bottom of the barrel. "I thank you for forgiving me. I hope that it means I may find a way to another chance." It is something to shoot for.

Then she's complimenting him and he, for a moment, is confused. But as she turns and presses into his shoulder, he draws in a breath and lowers his free hand. His fingers tuck gently beneath her chin so that his green eyes can meet hers.

"I thought about kissing you." he admits to her quietly. "A lot."

And a small laugh. "Wanted to make sure I smelled right for it." Even if his heart's racing, more than a little excitement rushing his system.

Gabby Kinney has posed:
The height difference between them had grown since they last sat beside each other. That, and the fact that he was sitting seiza while she was sitting on the ground, on her butt, with her knees tucked in against her chest meant any height she might have gained from sitting in the same position was lost. So when he catches at her chin to tip her head up to look at him again it means she is really looking up.

Just to be told he had thought of kissing her.

It's easy to feel the warmth of her cheek through that little touch because her face reddens a bit at the remark. The blush makes her look... If not younger perhaps a bit more vulnerable than she usually looks. The glint of amusement in her eyes completely ruins it though.

As does the fact that the trained assassin strikes quickly.

Her weight was already shifted more toward him so it took not much at all to drop that knee down to the ground, lifting up on her toes to gain height as she swings her opposite leg up and over with a twist of her body repositioning herself to straddle his lap so that she's facing him directly. The hand in his remains, but the other has slid to his shoulder to brace as she grins toward him close enough that her breath can be felt against his lips with a simple whisper of, "Same."

Her lips catch at his in a quickly stolen kiss that she lets linger letting his own reaction decide how long it lasts.

Damian Wayne has posed:
In all honesty, Damian had thought he would tell Gabby the truth and she would laugh it off and that would be that. A moment to grow up. To accept the truth of messing up their best chance to have captured a relationship.

And it is with this in mind that he misses that flicker of mischevious amusemnet in her eyes when she repositions herself. His knees give slightly, pushed from beneath him as she straddles him. His hand remains captured withim her as he finds her right up into his face.

'Same' she says.

And his kiss is stolen - for only a monent before his free hand rises. It pushes up and into the hair at the back of her skull as he cradles her, holding her kiss in place, a light part of his lips to share in a hint of a deepening before he only breaks for a moment brush his nose against hers. "Yes." he whispers, a lift of his head in a clear communication of wanting more.

Gabby Kinney has posed:
Gabby Kinney releases her hold on his hand to let it join the other sliding around him to hold in a light embrace while they kiss. When he respondsd with that yes, she smiles in a bit of relief, and lets her eyes drift shut. "Then ... let's try it again?" Comes her quiet suggestion. It's not the kiss she means though which is clear when she adds, "But if you run away like that again without an explanation, I'm going to shank you."

There would be a lot of explaining she'd have to do to someone else, she knew, but for now she was here with Damian. Her head ducks down to tuck in against the side of his neck letting her nose bump there with a little nuzzle at the crook of his shoulder with another drawn breath and mumble of, "Thank you for letting me meet Goliath."

Damian Wayne has posed:
"I wholly expect you to shank me before I have a chance. I had time to come to terms with it." Damian admits as his hands join together at the small of her back. "I know you were on a date with soeone else. If you need the time, I can wait." Just not too long...

Which is punctuated with a soft gasp of pleasure when she nuzzles his neck and he traces her back with his fingers. "I only introduce him to those that are improtant to me, Gabby." he admits to her quietly.

There's a small sigh. "I know it's getting late. If you want..." a glance to Goliath. "We could give you a ride home. Otherwise, there are plenty of guest rooms here." Which a dangerous proposition.

Gabby Kinney has posed:
Gabby Kinney grins a little at the noise he makes if only for a moment. Reluctantly she sits up to look back at him and the offer. "I brought my motorcycle so I should ride back. I'm used to late nights, though," she assures with a chuckle, and glance downward. There's only a nod of agreement.

"Yeah. I need to talk to him before anything else. It's only fair." Again she leans in but this time it was just to give a quick kiss to the tip of Damian's nose. Not quite 'sexy' but there's a bit of caring in there. "Thank you. I'll text you when I get home," she assures before releasing her hold on him to rise to her feet.

Healing factors were great for not having to deal with asleep legs very long at least.

Damian Wayne has posed:
Once she gets to her feet, Damian gets to his. "I'll look for it when you arrive. Be safe, Gabby." he offers to her with affection before he looks to Goliath.

"I'm sorry boy, she said no." Goliath slumps, looking at Gabby. "Next time!" he promises. "In the meantime..." He moves to saddle up. "Let's go on a patrol of the land!" There's a happy skree from Goliath as he lifts off the ground, carrying Damian with him.