4604/Snakes In The Grass

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Snakes In The Grass
Date of Scene: 04 January 2021
Location: Courtyard: Themysciran Embassy
Synopsis: Vorpal runs to the Embassy in search of solace, and finds help.
Cast of Characters: Terry O'Neil, Diana Prince

Terry O'Neil has posed:
The verdant grounds of the Embassy's courtyard are always a wonderful place to pause, reflect and gather oneself in the midst of a hectic day. The last twenty-four hours have been not just hectic for Terry O'Neil, it has been eerie, unnerving and borderline terrifying. The Tower, his beloved home-away-from-home, was no longer safe. His friends, except for Donna and Kara, and Kian for the moment, might not be themselves. Even back at the Planet, Lois clearly was /not/ Lois.

Where could he go?

A Rabbit Hole opens into the Courtyard of the Embassy. The Cheshire cat steps out of it with a hesitant pace, only to drop himself at the foot of a statue of Athena Parthenos, semi-secluded thanks to the vegetation there.

He needed a moment to himself. Somewhere to have a quiet freak-out, and he couldn't think of a safer place. Although Donna might be at the Tower, everybody else they had not cleared was also there. Too many ears. Too many eyes.

"Give me strength..." he says quietly, hiding his face in his hands. Who is he talking to? The goddess? Himself? "... it hasn't even started and I'm already coming apart."

Diana Prince has posed:
As it so happens, it's a quiet day in the Embassy.

It's the start of a new year, and the sun is up and shining down in to the courtyard. But that's not to say it's warm outside, because it most certainly isn't. The cold air is sharp, but there's no wind, the water in the reflection pool isn't iced-over because it's a heated pool and thusly is still perfectly mirrored, with even a small bird hopping around on one of the edges of said pool, quickly shifting its head around as it looks all over, and occasionally pecking at its reflection in the water.

Terry is left out here in the serene atmosphere like this, for quite awhile before he's noticed.

When he's noticed, it comes suddenly and in the form of a woman's voice accented thickly in Themysciran flavor.

"What are you doing here?" The voice asks / demands. It is not Diana's. The tall muscular redhead who stands behind Terry is holding an intimidating war spear in her right hand, though the tip is pointed up and the butt-end is planted in the grass. Her eyes are a dazzling blue, and her fiery red hair is tied back in an intricate braid. She's dressed in a black leather jacket and red leathers pants, casually styled.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
Curse his distress, he thinks to himself, for he forgot to make himself invisible. His moments of respite had turned into a moment where he has to justify himself, and it's uncomfortable for him. "I am sorry... I am a team-mate of Lady Troia and Cassandra." The Amazon is imposing, and she could easily pretzel him without much of an effort, so it was a good idea not to get on her bad side. "I'm... in some distress and I felt safe here. There's... nowhere else that is safe."

Because the Amazons never left Themyscira, in that other world. There would be no doppelgangers trying to infiltrate the Embassy. "I didn't mean offense... I probably should leave." His breathing is slower, but he can sense the anxiety is still there at the thought of setting foot out into the world outside. It was walking out in order to be besieged by lies.

Diana Prince has posed:
Terry has been to the Embassy on a number of occasions, and along with his deep rooted admiration for the women of Themyscira, he can likely recognize this woman to be named Adrastea. She is imposing too, of the two Amazonian women who are assigned to guard Diana, Galatea and Adrastea, this one is the most known for her combat prowess, where Galatea is know for her smarts and knowledge.

She stares at him as he relays his plight and offers to flee the area, but before he can do so she has a conflicted expression touch the muscles of her facial features.

"Wait." She says.

"If you are in peril, then you need to speak to the Princess." She states further.

"Where is Lady Troia?" Adra then asks.

Her eyes look to the north where the stone pathway leads back to the double doors that head inside the Embassy's main hallway. "I will get the Princess. You stay here." It's said with that accent foreign to these lands, it sounds a bit gruff... but she's been trained as a warrior for who knows how long! The fact that she didn't skewer the intruder on that pike she's holding is a testament to her reserved resolve!

Terry O'Neil has posed:
"She's back at the Tower-" he pauses as Adrastea decides that she will fetch the princess. "It... it really isn't necessary, it's..." bless her heart, far be it from any mortal man to deter an Amazon in the carrying out of her duty. Instinctively, he wants to shrink himself as the broad-shouldered redhead makes her way to the Embassy proper, not wanting to make a fus about something that everybody was dealing with, in one way or another.

"Darnit I've gone and made a nuisance of myself yet again," he mutters quietly, kicking idly at the grass. Now Diana was going to come out and he was going to take up her time.

He frowns, realizing something. The Amazons on Themyscira might not have doppelgangers, but what about Cassandra? He frowns. Okay, so maybe he had /some/ things to ask the Princess. He wouldn't be so useless... at least, he hoped so.

Diana Prince has posed:
It takes a few minutes, 5 to 10 there-about, before Diana appears in the doorway. Wearing a white dress with a turtleneck sweater worn over it, heeled shoes, and her dark hair tied back in a loose ponytail, Diana pauses to stare out at Terry.

A smile graces her lips before she closes the doors behind her and then walks toward him. She steps out in to the sunlight and it beams off of her white attire giving her a bit of a glow as she proceeds down the pathway. Her slim pointed chin dips for a second before she walks out on to the grass where he is and her hands come together in front of her lap, her fingers interlacing together.

"Vorpal." She uses the name of the form he's in now. "Adrastea said you were in... trouble?" She asks, quirking her right slender brow up for just a moment before it lowers evenly again with the other. "What is the matter?" The Princess asks, her voice much less gruff than that of her sister's had been.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
As Diana approaches, Vorpal draws himself up to a proper standing position, to at least show the suspect that is due. He looks uncomfortable, but he also looks extremely tired and a little sluggish, like someone who hasn't been sleeping properly. "I am so sorry, Princess. I didn't mean to..." his shoulders slump. "You've heard about the doubles... since the Avengers and everybody else knows by now. I am not... dealing with it. At all. I suspect almost everyone- I have reason to suspect almost everyone. Over at the tower, the only people I can ever know are /not/ doubles at any one time are Donna and Kara. But that place used to be my home, and now..."

He exhales and walks in a little circle on the grass.

Diana Prince has posed:
Diana remains motionless, aside from her eyes on Vorpal. She watches him start to pace after laying out his brief cause on what's got him so stressed out. She takes a moment to let his words rest in the cold winter air between them before she raises her stare up toward the horizon a moment, looking past the roof of the Embassy.

"Has something specific happened that has lead you to believe that your teammates are some of the duplicates?" Diana asks as she steps over toward one of the viewing benches beside the reflection pool. She motions for Vorpal to join her and take a seat, suspecting that HE could use a bit of a break from pacing.

"To my understanding, SHIELD is on the situation, and they are reporting sightings to each team should one of these duplicates become an issue that requires-- say the Justice League --to come and assist the SHIELD agents with dealing with them. So Vorpal, if you truly do have reason to believe your team has been compromised by these ... alternates ... then we should take what information you have to a SHIELD Duty Station." Of which there are many setup around Manhattan.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
"It's ... I have reasons, but I don't have /enough/ reasons yet." He looks at Diana with wide eyes, his tone one of hopeless anxiety. "Last night. Gar was acting strange. Off. You'd think I was just an acquaintance- and Kian noticed that as well. And he did... okay. Gar has lived in that damned tower for all the time the old Titans were active, and us. And he suddenly /forgets/ which side of the elevator the call switch is on? But he has his phone, his actual phone..." he deflates, sitting on the bench. "It's so circumstancial, I can't go to SHIELD with that. Even if I say 'this is the man I love and I know everything about him', how do you /not/ sound like some Overly Attached Boyfriend who suddenly is getting worried that the relationship might be cooling and would rather believe he's been replaced by a double?" he shakes his head, "And yet, I'm almost sure that's not /my/ Gar..."

His voice grows quiet. Small. "And then the implication of that is... where /is/ my Gar?" he shudders, and closes his eyes.

"And today I saw Lois. My boss. Lois Lane. And she's /not/ herself. And by not herself I mean... that's not her. This Lois was clean-cut, didn't swear, drank the froofiest coffee and was very very polite.... and either I am crazy or my hooch-drinking black-tar-coffee-making cussing-like-a-sailor boss just got replaced. I didn't to work, I called in saying I was doing field work... but someone needs to tell Superman."

And then horror dawns on him. "And Clark. Shit. I need to get... I have to get Kara to check on him..."

He rubs his forehead, "It's the uncertainty. It's killing me. I suspect but I don't know. can't even sense when someone's lying like Donna can. And.... and if Gar has been replaced... how can I trust SHIELD will make finding /my/ Gar a priority versus getting rid of the double?"

Talk about taking a load off your chest.

Diana Prince has posed:
Diana takes a moment to place her right hand on Terry's left shoulder. She offers it as a gesture of comfort because of his distressed state of being. "Vorpal. If these duplicates are targeting our teams, the Avengers, the Justice League, the Titans, and your instincts are telling you that Gar's behavior is indicative of one of them having swapped places with him, then you need to trust your instincts and act on it. It is the right thing to do, and Gar would understand that. The real Gar would understand that, at the very least."

She takes her hand from his shoulder then and places it back on to her lap with the other. "If you would like more reassurance on these suspicions, then send Donna here." She tells him next. "I will give her the Lasso of Truth to come to the tower and use it on those within it. She can determine their true intentions there-in, and hopefully put your nerves at ease. If--" She shakes her head slowly then.

"If it turns out to be true, then we additionally have our answers, and will go from there on dealing with the situation." She says all of this calmly, almost as though she's been through things like this before.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
Vorpal nods slowly, taking a shuddering breath. He is doing his best to regain his center, but he's clearly under a lot of duress and, although he performed quite well while lost in a strange land, he's still an inexperienced teenager. Being trapped in an unfamiliar world with known friends doesn't seem to have rattled him nearly as much as finding himself in a known world and no idea which of his friends were reliable. "I... you are right. I think I need to go to the tower and find Donna... and try to get Gar captured if he's not ... himself." He rubs at his eyes.

"If I can't find Donna and things get out of hand..."

He looks towards the Amazon, seeming much smaller and much more helpless than his usual demeanor, "... would you help me? If this other Gar attacks, I know he's not going to hold back. And I'm not... I'm not powerful enough to stop him if he does."

Diana Prince has posed:
What Terry says causes a series of thoughts to run through Diana's head, but at his unusually dour state, she decides it's best to just show him a smile. "I will go to the tower with you." The Princess simply announces. "It might be best that I be there to check on this situation. The Titans, as a whole, have been through a lot lately, and if the Lasso of Truth is needed, perhaps it best that I be the one to deliver it."

Is Gar in real peril? She's not sure. The motivations of the Dopplegangers haven't come to light.

"Come." Diana moves to stand up. "Let us go inside and prepare. I will finish up my work and then join you on a trip back to the Tower."

Adrastea reappears from the house and in to the light of the courtyard. Diana looks to her. "Prepare the Jet." The Princess tells her sister. "We will take it to the Titan's home."

"Yes, my Lady." Adrastea replies.

Terry O'Neil has posed:
Vorpal stands up. It doesn't look like he is magically rejuvenated, but he does seem a little less insecure, a little less afraid. "Thank you, Wonder Woman," he says with both gratitude and respect, "It means so much to me..."

He knew, in his heart of hearts, that Troia and Wonder Woman present would mean they stood more than a winning chance. Terry knew that Beast Boy was one of the strongest members of the Titans in pure potential, with the entirety of the formidable animal kingdom at his fingertips. Donna was an equal to him in potential strength and speed depending on his form, but her experience and training outmatched his by light years. Diana's experience was even longer. Together, the two sisters would leave Gar with no choice but to attempt to escape, or to surrender. If he surrendered, all the better. If he tried to run...

He clenches his fist as Diana speaks to Adrastea. If he tried to escape, Vorpal would see that there would be a welcoming Rabbit Hole to deliver him to the Amazons. Troia could sense falsehood and thus could sniff out if this was a lying Doppelganger... but she could not compel someone to tell the truth- could not compel the Doppelganger to reveal what he had done with the person who meant the most to Terry O'Neil.

But the brilliant glowing line of the Lasso of Truth would. The truth would come out... whatever it may be.

The Cheshire cat looks to one of the statues in the garden. Lovely Aphrodite, goddess of love, standing in a posture reminiscent of the Aphrodite of Knidos, but far lovelier and far more sophisticated in workmanship.

~Goddess of love,~ he surprises himself thinking, actually praying, ~Please help us. I am afraid.~

"I'll let Donna know we're on the way, if she's at the tower."

With a knot in his stomach, he adds, "While we prepare, I should try to get a message to Captain Marvel since she works with SHIELD... I saw the Doppelganger of Nadia Van Dyne. Calls herself 'Hope'. She shrunk me... and I would've died if I hadn't escaped." He had just had the day from hell yesterday, it seems.

Little did he know that today was about to outmatch it.