17853/Put A Dent In Crime

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Put A Dent In Crime
Date of Scene: 10 May 2024
Location: Tricorner Docks
Synopsis: A team of heroines (and one gelatinous alien) infiltrate a cargo ship that's just arrived in the Gotham City harbor. They sabotage the ship, subdue the crew, and ultimately tie a delightful little bow on a mass of drugs destined for the streets of Gotham. It's a great bust for the GCPD!
Cast of Characters: Harvey Dent, Harper Row, Stephanie Brown, Essix, Natasha Cranston, Cassandra Cain

Harvey Dent has posed:
Tonight the weather of Gotham has betrayed the city's vigilantes for a change. The fog and rain that seems to so frequently encapsulate a night in Gotham, has elected not to be present tonight. In fact it is a perfectly pleasant night, with clear skies and not a wisp of fog to be found. For those who so often utilize obscurity and concealment to their advantage, that is a hindrance.

While Gotham itself may have betrayed those seeking to upend the plans of the Gotham underworld? Fate itself seems to have prepared a consolation prize of a sort. The moon is little more than a sliver tonight. The waxing crescent in the sky overhead puts of minimal illumination, which does at least provide adequate concealment for the most surreptitious of crimefighters.

No more than an hour ago the cargo ship had entered the port of Gotham City and gradually made its way to the Tricorner Docks. It's a ship of considerable size out of Amsterdam, by way of the Marshall Islands. Unloading has not began by the time heroes with a nose for finding a reportedly massive shipment of drugs begin to descend upon it. While some of the crew act as security on the top deck, patrolling in teams of two or three; others have began to move through the ship like ants within their colony. Everyone has a job, everyone has a purpose. Soon the unloading of cargo will begin, but it will take some time to get everything prepared for unloading.

Disabling the ship and making it incapable of leaving the port, securing the cargo, and securing the crew so that they may be swept up in the GCPD's planned bust? Must be of the highest priority.

Harper Row has posed:
Bluebird would rather take to the skies, but the weather isn't going to play ball. Her buzzy drones aren't left at home, but they have been repurposed. Some jury rigging and some sequential realignments of Hewy, Dewy and Kablouie become her helpful underwater Huskies.

Over her comms, she offers a Storm Trooper-esque update as she closes in on the barnacle bespeckled hull of the ship. "Coming up on the choppy things." A deep breath. "Nobody remind me of that certain movie or nothing...Probably slice a lot of sushi with these bad boys. Will gum 'em up before coming up."

Her costume has been lined to keep out the worst of the chill, but there's something about large looming shadows in a dark mysterious harbor that give her the heebie jeebies. No need for coffee tonight, she's out of her usual element and running on high grade anxiety and excitement. Her HUD suffers a few nerve-wracking drips from the imperfect seal of her mask, helping to highlight the importance of speed ~and~ stealth.

Stephanie Brown has posed:
The lights that shine on various parts of the deck and ship don't extend up high enough to light up the top of the nearby crane. Atop it is perched a figure, her cape held about her in a way to help break up the human silhouette should anyone happen to look up that way.

<< I've got three people on a patrol heading down the aft port side walkway. I'm going to swing down and eliminate them quietly. Or that's the hope. Essix can you find the shipment and let us know when they are getting ready to offload it? Bluebird can you handle disabling the engines? >>

Essix has posed:
Bats are really good an infiltration, but they have nothing on a little alien who can literally be anything. Essix was still learning how to be a 'hero', so she relied heavily on guidance when it come to missions.

Emerging from Stephanie's pocket, whether she knew the little alien was there or not, Essix remains in her true form as a viscous liquid, but turns as gray as the pavement and starts making her way toward the ship.

Outside of her no sound can be heard as she replies. << I will head inside and begin my search. We can assume the shipment is in the bowls of the ship, so that is where I will start. Should you require me for anything else, please let me know. >> That said, she keeps herself flat and unreflective while finding a good place, other than the gang plank, to board the ship.

Natasha Cranston has posed:
            Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of Man?

    The _Angeline Van Hoorn_ is legitimately registered by the Brandt en Co naval shipping company, and most of the cargo is equally legitimate. But ever since the acquisition deal with Cranston Multinational fell through because its newly returned CEO vetoed the move, business has been scarce. It's a lot harder to make lucrative, discreet deals as an independent transporter, because Customs officers tend to be more suspicious of those who don't have a Name to speak for them.

    Which is why the director was all too happy to listen when Sal Maroni's representatives approached his representatives to discuss a mutually beneficial arrangement. Maroni already had people in place to take care of the customs side; he just needed someone to actually carry his shipment. He'd lost a few too many of his established carriers lately, but at least he's sure he'd plugged the leak.

    He will not be happy to learn that he's wrong -- and that The Shadow Knows.

    Working with other heroes, especially in a coordinated operation, is still kind of novel to Natasha - but given the size of the ship and the number of expected guards, many hands may well make light work.

    Security is alert, as she expected it to be, but Maroni's men are Gotham, not New York, and while they've learned to fear Bats, they have not yet learned to pay close attention to the movement of shadows. A moment's observation, a twist of will, and she slips past the shoreside guards and silently makes her way up to the deck, then keys the comm Oracle generously provided.

    "<< Moving into position. Batgirl, hold on my word before engaging; I want to know the timing of their comms checks. >>"

    She goes silent again as she shadows her chosen first victim, waiting for the comms check to come through -- if one does.

Harvey Dent has posed:
Bluebird - or perhaps Seabird tonight - makes her approach on the cargo vessel with minimal leakage of her mask's seals. While most wouldn't expect an assault from the water, especially against a docked cargo ship, there are still two men that stand near the portside rail. They look out over the water, but given the lack of any true moonlight illumination, they don't see the tell-tale sign of movement on the water's surface.

From above Batgirl is capable of relaying the precise location, movements, and real time updates on the various patrols rotations. Along the entirety of the cargo ship's deck, Stephanie is able to see five separate groups; four of which include two of the crew patrolling, with the fifth featuring a three-man team.

Across the pavement Essix goes, though the viscous liquid looks to avoid the gangway itself. It may require a leap of faith, a little moxie, and perhaps even a smidge of elevation; but it's entirely possible that the puddle might be able to spring from dockside and onto the anchor chain sprouting from the side of the ship's hull. From there it's likely infiltration of the cargo ship could begin in earnest.

The shadows are alive it would seem when The Shadow is on the move. A convenient timed turn of the head or simple glance toward a fellow crewmember is enough to distract many from the movement of Natasha. Carefully she eases her way aboard the ship and tucks herself away, preparing to spring into action the moment a patrol draws near to the shadow she has concealed herself within.

Harper Row has posed:
As intimidating as the ship's propellers are, Harper gets in closer a bit more, and then lets go of her trio of tech buddies. They cavitate on towards where Bluebird paints their destination. With dull little crumps and sproings, they bloom like black and blue flowers and surge towards one of the massive props. Their self-mangling sacrifices themselves to tangling wires and scrap. Nothing that'll stop the ship dead, but it'll maybe help delay anyone that tries to effectively pilot this behemoth while others knock out command and control.

No time to shed a tear for shredded gear, Bluebird crawls on up to the cold steel hull and rubs her palms together, then patty-cakes her knees. Froggo time. The drenched Bluebird gadget-gizmos her way on up the aft of the ship. And while her palms and knees don't make puckering sounds, you can be certain that Harper is with her mouth. ~pok pok pok~ Fast as she can. Getting herself into a better position before someone gives the signal to spring into action. All sneaky sneaky creepy-crawling up on those two sentries.

Essix has posed:
Logical approach, that is what Essix and her people are best at. Look at a situation, calculate the variables, then choose the most logical. In this case, that decision is to turn herself into a long noodle like tendril, stretch out to the anchor chain, then as she gooped the rest of herself to the chain itself... she turned into a wharf rat.

Scrambling up the chain with ease, after all that is how many rats get onto and off of ship, she disappears through the hole the chain extends from and into the bowels of the ship.

<< I am inside, heading toward the cargo hold now. >> Again, there is no sound from the rat scurrying along the ground, as if the voice she speaks with comes from some where inside of herself... in fact, where is her comm unit? That's right, inside of her.

Natasha Cranston has posed:
One minute passes. Then another. Natasha mentally addresses a curse at the lack of professionalism in organized crime these days, then keys her comm again. "<< They do not appear to be using check-ins, >>" she comments, disdain audible even through her voice mask's distortion. "<< Start the party at your discretion. >>"

    With that, she moves out from her alcove and behind the passing patrol. She grabs the rearmost man by the back of his suit and yanks him off his feet, slamming his head back on the deck hard enough to stun him for a moment while she steps past him to intercept his partner before he can turn.

    A grab of the wrist as his arm comes up, immobilizing the hand with the baton in it long enough for a knife hand strike to the throat to cut off the incipient yell. A quick kick to the temple of the man on the ground to put him out of the fight, a quick two punch combo to the stomach and face of the standing man while he's still trying to recover his breath, and both are down.

    A moment's more work to put them out of sight, and the Shadow moves on to track the next group...

Stephanie Brown has posed:
Batgirl gives extra details on where the five groups of patrolling sailors are. Ending with, << The last one there is a group of three. All the other are pairs. Probably best to take out the others first and stow them out of sight, and then we can converge on the larger group. >>

Her mind races through her options before finally Batgirl leaps off the crane, her cape forming rigid lines for a gliding frame that helps her glide across to land on the edge of one the ship's stacks. Warm, but thankfully now it isn't underway the engines aren't going and belching out as much exhaust.

She waits for the right moment, when one man of a pair lags behind the other to lean out over the railing and look down at the water. Even if anyone were watching they might not be sure what they saw. Darkness just seeming to engulf the man and then he's gone. The other goes a few more steps before pausing and looking back. "Jake?" he says. He walks back over to where Jake was. "What you fall overboard?" he asks, moving to look over the railing.

Batgirl drops from above again, a hypo jabbed into his neck even as she engulfs him in her cape and then lets her grapple reel her back up. The man already passing out, Batgirl leaves him hanging up above with Jake, their hands cuffed behind their backs, dangling from lines about their ankles in a dark spot of the ship's superstructure.

Cassandra Cain has posed:
Remembering that Orphan was here wasn't always easy. The silent bat girl who wasn't 'Batgirl' and assassin from birth did tend to be the sneaky sort after all. Still, the hooded figure dropped down from the shadows, seemingly out of nowhere but almost certainly propelled by a grapnel swing to touch down beside Stephanie, the motion of her landing announcing her to the other young woman as she peers down at the patrollers. Backup it seems, intending to assist in the takedown unless directed elsewhere.

If there were any apologies for being 'late', they weren't forthcoming. Maybe she'd always been here!

Harvey Dent has posed:
The mechanical sacrifice of a trio of drones may not disabled the propellers, but it'll certainly gum up the works. It's likely enough to inhibit more precise maneuvering for the massive vessel, which means until it's clear: it's likely not leaving the harbor. Up and up Bluebird begins to climb, making her little *plop* noises by way of her mouth. In only a moment a pair of the guards won't even know what hit 'em.

Skillfully Essix stretches out from deck to chain, before pulling herself into the shape of a harbor rat. Much like the creature that she mimics, she's aboard the ship in a moment's notice. Calling in her report and swiftly scurrying soundless toward the ship's primary cargo hold.

The combined efforts of Batgirl and The Shadow find nearly half of the top deck's security patrol subdued. Cuffed, zip-tied, or otherwise restrained; they're tucked away within shadow or even hanging from the ship's structure itself by their ankles.

Once the top deck is cleared, taking the bridge would be one of the next likely targets. Below decks, securing the engine room may be helpful, but not necessarily critical if one controls the bridge. Securing the cargo and making certain it remains precisely where it is, may be equally critical as taking the bridge.

Natasha Cranston has posed:
    Natasha can't help but nod in approval as she watches the two batlings at work. However young they may be, it's clear that Batman's faith in them is well deserved.

    "<< That was the last of them on this deck, >>" she comms. "<< I'm heading to the Bridge; do we have eyes below decks and in the engine room? >>"

Harper Row has posed:
Bluebird moistily makes her way up the hull like a glistening frog girl. She pauses, hearing the info coming over the comms. She acknowledges with a series of static blips.

She has to wait for the perfect moment. That instant when the duo are doing their thing. She just needs 'em to come close enough.

With a surge of motion, she detaches her sticky palms and lurches forward like the Borb from the Blork lagoon. "Steeck Awh-roound." Wrapping her arms around and palming their mouths before sending some non-tickly volts up into their mugs. Zort!

The wetness of her gear has the happy accident of giving her a small taste of similar, albeit much nerfed. Enough to be thankful she isn't wearing her piercings and that insulation.

A quick swat at her belt for her ties and she snags both their ankles with a clasp, pushes them over the railing and lets them dangle.

Stephanie Brown has posed:
<< One team down. >> Batgirl sends over the comms. << Orphan is here too. Moving on the next pair aft. >> The blond Batgirl looks over to Orphan, flashing her a grin at her presence. She holds up a... piece of candy it looks like and then motions with her head towards the next pair down the deck.

Batgirl make a running start and vaults up the side of the ship to grab some of the structure above, then makes her way down quietly above the next group. She tosses the candy, it's a jawbreaker, so it bounces off a wall and then rattles across the deck towards the two patrolling men.

They turn towards it, looking about then spotting it on the ground. "What is it?" one asks.

The other steps forward to bend over and pick it up. "It's... a jawbreaker, I think?" he looks up and around, missing Batgirl taking down his buddy behind him.

The guard turns then, seeing Batgirl standing there with his friend unconscious on the ground at her feet. His eye bug out, and as he reaches for his gun, Batgirl just points behind the guard.

Essix has posed:
No one ever pays attention to rats, unless that rat is in their food. For Essix, sneaking around was made all the more easy because of it. She could hear conversations, people moving around, all kinds of things that although interesting, could not derail her from her assigned task.

Reaching the cargo hold, she has to wait for the door to be opened, then she slip inside. Climbing up the containers she starts looking around, and internally 'oh dears'.

<< I am in the cargo hold... there are a very, very large number of drug containers here, as well as at least fifteen crew members. They appear to be getting ready to offload the containers, but are moving the drugs into barrels marked hazardous. >>

There is a pause here, while she moves to a better location to ensure her number count was correct. << I will continue to observe, but should they begin to off load the barrels, should I engage a distraction tactic that will announce our, or at least my, presence? >>

Cassandra Cain has posed:
A nod, though the half-mask obscures any smile from Cass if there was one to see. Sometimes it's hard to know.

Still she leaps, a silhouetted figure launched like gravity were almost a suggestion and twisting to land elgantly behind the startled man in the barest moment that he'd been turning. Perhaps a rustle of air through her cape was the only warning he'd get, but even that was so soft as to likely be missed by the senses of the man clearly distracted by Stephanie and his fallen friend.

The hand going for the gun falls limp about an immperceptible milisecond before the world goes black as the swift strikes against the back of his neck send a nerve cluster paralysed and a vagus nerve shock to send him unconcious without so much as a sound.

Down he drops, lowered easily by Cass who looks up, giving a silent raise of a hand in a 'thumbs up' to the other batling.

Stephanie Brown has posed:
Stephanie Brown catches the jawbreaker out of the air as the man goes down, and pops it into her mouth with a grin for Cassandra.

Harvey Dent has posed:
The last of the patrols are dispatched by the combined effort of a pair of Bats, a Shadow, and a Bluebird. This at least creates a little breathing room, even if in terms of overtaking the ship and its crew it may be the most straightforward part. Arguably it may have been among the most dangerous parts, however.

In her rat-like form, Essix is able to observe some of the crew working to transfer the shipment directly into hazardous waste barrels in their preparation of unloading. A few among them appear to be security of a sort, watching the work unfold, but also keeping a complacent eye on their surroundings.

The deck now secured, the command bridge and its modest crew awaits. As does the more robust complement of crewmembers deeper within the ship's cargo hold. No doubt along the way, amid the tight corridors, twists, and turns there will be the lone crewmember or two that must be evaded or dispatched.

Stephanie Brown has posed:
<< The guards are taken care of. Orphan take the bridge? Bluebird and I can lock and secure them in the hold. If the doors don't lock can flash-weld them. And Shadow... gather up what information you can? I'll put in a call to GCPD. >>

If that seems to work for the team, Batgirl heads for the nearest stairs down towards the level of the cargo hold. She'll coordinate with Bluebird and then quietly swing the metal, watertight door shut. She's not sure she can lock it in a way they can't get through, so some gummy substance from a utility belt is pulled out and spread along the door's edge. A detonator is place in it, and then Batgirl is making her way around to another door coming in from another hallway.

The same takes place, until that door is ready to be welded shut by igniting the compound. She gets back to a safe spot, and waits to hear from Bluebird and Essix until the timing is right to detonate the high temperature substance that will melt the door closed.

Natasha Cranston has posed:
    The Shadow nods at Steph's suggestion.

    "<< An excellent suggestion, >>" comes the reply. "<< Leave it to me; I'll make certain Oracle receives a copy of everything I find. >>"

    With that, the Shadow once again fades from view, heading for the Captain's quarters.

Essix has posed:
Moving around the boxes, Essix get a line of sight on all the men in the cargo hold. She doesn't require 'eyes' to see, just as she doesn't need ears to hear... so literally she puts herself in a place that she can see them all.

The ceiling.

Normal rats can't run along the ceiling, but alien rat can, and once she is in a position that she is certain that all of them will be in sight, she waits for the cue.

The moment everything is ready she says, << Release the kraken! >> and drops from the ceiling. As she is falling, she expands herself out into an octopus with a ten foot by ten foot body, and massive tentacles that start reaching and whipping around to grab at the men while they are panicking.

"Stop fighting!" She calls out, talking giant kraken octopus. "You have already lost!"

Talk about a distraction.

Cassandra Cain has posed:
A nod, a little adjustment of her hood and a roll of her shoulders before Cass was away, each step, spring, leap quickly propelling her in that ease of movement until she touched down at the bridge's side access door. Fingers flex, a gloved touch eeking the door open likely drawing eyes that way and yet...instead of a silhouette there's a sudden bounce of a small metallic object before an intense burst of light has eyes clenched shut for a moment and the flash flaring through the windows.

Before vision had even returned the sounds of swift, efficiant and maybe a 'little' brutal of hands, knees, elbows and feet to mook faces announced Orphan's arrival. It was over fast, but then again they were 'Bats', and well...this was kinda what Cassandra Cain -did-.

Exhaling a breath, there's a moment where she adjusts her glove and looks over the bridge before drawing out the collapsable restraints from her belt to begin securing the poor thugs hit by the black-clad five and a half foot day ruiner before she speaks a brief two words over the coms:

"Bridge secure."

Harvey Dent has posed:
There is a mission underway and missions often carry with them objectives. The top deck has been cleared of security and soon Orphan is moving steathily toward the bridge. It's with the element of surprise, expert tactics, and exceptional combative skill that she subdues what few crew occupy the tight quarters bridge of the cargo ship. The last of the unconscious crew drops to the deck almost in unison with her broadcast across the teams comms.

The Shadow drifts from one of her namesake to the next as she drifts below decks and gradually picks her way through the innards of the massive ship until she locates the captain's quarters. They are of course more spacious than the crew's own quarters, along with a host of amenities. She locates the laptop that is laughably easy to find tucked away within a desk drawer. It's sad really and hardly even laughable. The fact that there isn't even a password on the device is truly astonishing. It takes her as far as a few seconds to locate a few files on the laptop which appear to be digital receipts, noting that the cargo delivery is intended for an S.M. of Gotham City and insured by another individual noted only as 'The Roman'.

Through the ship Batgirl and Bluebird move. They are as phantoms throughout the corridors and bulkheads of the cargo ship, leaving in their wake a colorful array of disabled and cuffed individuals.

As Bluebird and Batgirl approach the cargo hold, they find the presence of a massive gelatinous octopus merrily swinging and swaying, shouting and terrified mean screeching their surprised fear as they're treated to one of the more heinous carnival rides one could ever imagine suddenly be sprang upon them.

Yet more are incapacitated with years of accumulated practice seeing the ship systematically disabled, both mechanically as well as organically as the crew is likewise incapacitated.

By the time the last of the heroines has slipped away from the vessel, the first of the GCPD tactical teams are rolling onto the dock with sirens blaring and lights slashing through the night. More and more of the GCPD's finest begin to pour onto the scene. Those aware of the police's timetable might even recognize that as the District Attorney had predicted - they had exceeded expectations - they were late. Nearly ten minutes after the time that the GCPD had claimed their operation would begin, they finally arrive. They're in for quite the surprise when they find a cargo ship with a crew of beaten, bruised, and detained sailors. Some of whom babble about living shadows, giant jellypusi, and an assortment of other colorful figures that had slipped throughout the ship like ghosts.

It's a good bust for the GCPD. There'll surely be a promotion or two passed around. Never mind the fact that they'd done the easy part.