acrobatical: A rare, maskless sighting of the wild Grayson (Dick: Hey good lookin')
Note: This application is a swap-out. If approved, I would be dropping Shifu of Kung Fu Panda and picking up Dick Grayson of the DCU.

Player Information:
Name: Alex
Age: More than 18, less than 81
Contact: [plurk.com profile] reignsdown
Game Cast: September 2012 AC
Shifu | Kung Fu Panda | [personal profile] shifu_sifu | this is the swap-out character
Ororo Munroe | Marvel 1610 | [personal profile] storm_warning
Tony Stark | MCU | [personal profile] iron_ego

Character Information:
Name: Richard "Dick" Grayson | Batman
Canon: DC Comics
Canon Point: End of the Batman & Robin run; Bruce Wayne is back and Dick is still operating as Batman in Gotham City
Age: Late 20s
Reference: Dick Grayson | New Earth

Setting:
Take modern day Earth, the spawning ground of countless settings and series alike, and hold it in your mind. Somewhere in your peripheral, hold fifty-one other Earths, because the world as DC knows it is comprised of a fifty-two facetted multiverse. This is the breeding ground of alternate-universe storytelling, with each 'verse having similar characters, but its own unique set of circumstances that makes it different. Every once in a while a crisis will come along that changes or resets these Earths (sup, Crisis on Infinite Earths, Infinite Crisis, and Flashpoint), but things are mostly on the level.

The Earth that concerns Dick Grayson is New Earth -- the version of Earth that settled after Infinite Crisis and ended with Flashpoint -- and it's pretty standard to our Earth and history. Politics happen, humanity thrives, and the majority of the population mucks about their daily existences with nary a care to conspiracies beyond Big Brother and Area 51. It's the 1% that concerns us here, and I don't mean the top tier income earners. Ignoring billionaire playboy Bruce Wayne.

The 1% break the norm in a variety of ways. Most notably, they run on a spectrum of good or evil and a spattering of chaotic neutrals in between and are, more often than not, pitted one against the other in the longstanding conflict of peace and war -- though it takes on the tamer countenance of crime here.

Falling under the 'good' side of the spectrum are the proverbial heroes of New Earth. They represent a variety of positive causes, from defending the innocent to keeping intergalactic peace, and they do so with a variety of means. There are aliens with superpowers (see: Superman as he flies in the sky and represents peace, justice, and the American dream; alternately, see: the Martian Manhunter, an actual Martian with many abilities that range from telepathy to shapeshifting), metahumans with powers (see: the various incarnations of the speedster Flash) that are caused by catalysts ranging from science experiments to exposure to strange radiation, magicians (sup, Zatara clan using the reverse of words to cast spells), humans/aliens with artefacts of power (see: the Lantern Corps that use rings of power to form constructs), and the average, everyday human with excessive intelligence and/or combat training (see: the Batclan of vigilantes).

Falling under the 'evil' side of the spectrum are many of the same sorts, though they tend to conspire for the downfall or enslavement of humanity over the preservation of it. They resemble their good counterparts only in a proclivity for having ridiculous names (see: the Joker, Clayface, Killer Croc) and wearing ridiculous costumes (Poison Ivy, clothing does typically involve more than wearing plants). Meanwhile, sharing this proclivity are the chaotic neutrals, who bop back and forth between the sides as it suits them (heyla, Catwoman).

There are so many of these heroes and villains that they've even formed associations dedicated to the protection (or destruction) of humanity. We're talking groups like the Justice League, comprised of the biggest and best of the world's heroes, or the League of Assassins, an international conglomeration of villains and assassins headed by the great Ra's al Ghul (a nigh immortal eco-terrorist, in layman's terms). There's the Teen Titans for the good-guy sidekicks and the Injustice League for the crème de la crème of supervillains. Frankly, there's no limit to these team-ups and alliances, which change from month to month based on the direction that the wind's blowing.

The world at large is aware of these superheroes and supervillains, most often as a result of being the target of the latter and under the protection of the former. Newspaper headlines cover their antics and public opinion for the good guys tends to be, on the whole, positive. The only thing that's not covered tends to be the secret identities/alter egos of this 1% as they've mostly wised up to the idea that being a superhero or supervillain all the time is pretty taxing and it's nice to pretend you can kick back, relax, and have a normal life.

Ahahahaha, right.

When all is said an done, the balance of good and evil remains about the same; petty and organised crime still thrives despite the presence of so many neutralising factors, but it's not that rampant in cities like Metropolis (protectorate of Superman), Star City (the base of operations for the Arrow family), or Central City (the racetrack of the Flash clan). There are some exceptions, however, with the two main ones being the sister cities of Gotham City and Blüdhaven.

Take Gotham City first. Permanently lodged in the film noir era, it is a city deeply rooted in traditions - the first and foremost being one of crime. In Gotham, corruption starts from the ground up, beginning with the petty thugs and filtering up through the lieutenants, the bosses, the villains, and generally petering out somewhere in the lower echelons of the police force. The problem is, there are a lot of people at the bottom rung of this and they do a damn fine job of keeping the crime rate high.

Then there is (or was) Blüdhaven, which is sister city to Gotham and one that stood more modernly than her dark counterpart. Thing is, the corruption here started from the top and filtered down; the mayor was corrupt, same as the police, and bled out from there. Honesty was never the best policy around there, and trying it generally got one killed. The crime rate was technically leaps and bounds ahead of Gotham's, but with a police force that didn't make a habit of arresting criminals, pressing charges, or submitting its problems to national scrutiny, there was no reliable measure of it. The vigilante known as Nightwing (take note of that name, it's important) operated out of here, reducing the crime and helping to instill a sense of pride and responsibility in the police force, riiiiight up until the city was devastated by an explosion and contaminated by a massive chemical fallout.

Disregarding that, we have two cities, two examples of the model that more crime means more success - hey, if you keep throwing beer bottles in the ocean, eventually the dolphins will be alcoholics. They are proof that a world of superheroes still has its problems, especially as there are no superheroes defending what's right here.

Gotham City is where this world introduced the concept of vigilantism - a key concept to Dick. You see, crime in Gotham is fought by the police, but for those villains that keep evading, or the ones working where the cops can't see, there's a self-styled crime-fighter named Batman that sweeps up the mess and takes out the trash.

Who is Batman? To start, he's this guy that wanders around Gotham City in the dark of night, dressed like a bat enthusiast. Officially, only a handful know that he happens to be a ridiculously rich philanthropist playboy by the name of Bruce Wayne (Tony Stark, eat your heart out). Criminals know and fear him as the Dark Knight, or that dude who breaks up all their crime rings. He's been doing it for years and has a reputation that precedes him. Over time, he's even had partners (multiple Robins; Batgirl; to name a few) in his vigilante ways, along with the trust of the police chief.

The big thing is that this guy's a normal human, not even one bitten by a radioactive bat. What drives him is not some deep, alien purpose, but a deeply rooted obsession for vengeance inspired by the death of his parents. Because, in Gotham? It's tradition for all vigilantes to be inspired by the traumatic death of their parents (Dick fits this mold, since his parents died in a traumatic accident).

Actually, Dick fits the vigilante role in a lot of ways and the role of vigilante is actually how he fits into this universe. Batman's first Robin (child sidekick) happened to be no more than tiny, baby (well, twelve year old) Dick Grayson, the ward of Bruce Wayne and the first partner of Gotham's most angst-ridden, justice-obsessed detective. Trained by the Dark Knight himself (man, are you getting tired of the pseudonyms for Bats too?), he's arguably one of the best non-super heroes that this world has on offer. Which would be why, when the original Batman was perceived as dead, he ended up taking on the cowl and title. Where he once had been Nightwing (told you this name was important) he now had to be Batman, the foremost authority on vigilantism that New Earth has to offer.

Personality:
You'd think that watching your family die horribly in some entirely preventable accident would leave a man terrible scarred, traumatised, and entirely too downtrodden by survivor's guilt to do more than brood dramatically and take his quest for vengeance to the streets of Gotham. And, hey, you'd be right! ...if this was the original Batman.

Nothing against Bruce Wayne's coping skills, but Dick Grayson went another route when he watched his parents - the Flying Graysons - fall from the trapeze and die in the centre of the circus and it's more than in part due to Bruce that he did so. Broken with grief and tossed into a troubled system, it took being taken in as his ward and, ultimately, given the chance to act as partner to Batman, that let him come out infinitely less troubled by his psychological scars.

'Less' being the keyword here, because life as the first Robin hardly came without its trials, tribulations, and otherwise troubles. That's part and parcel of putting on a pair of pixie boots and fighting the criminal scum of Gotham City, all while trying to live up to the impossible standards set for him by Bruce Wayne, aka Batman. 'Do it better' was the mantra he heard and came to live by, because one has to do it better in order to get the best of the criminal element and not die horribly in the process (proven by the murder of the second Robin, Jason Todd).

That said, the support that he received in Wayne Manor and the entirely platonic, legal love that he was exposed to which allowed Dick to grow as a person and not be consumed by the darkness. Sure, as a child used to the closeness of the circus, he would have fared better if left with the compassionate pseudofamily he had in Haly's Circus, but he wasn't and he didn't harbour any particular bitterness at Bruce for it. All things said and done, he actually came out as a pretty nice guy. Not even a nice guy so much as the nice guy - you know, the one that everyone goes to for advice, help, or just a chill afternoon of hangouts?

Dick is usually not half the dick his name implies and his years fighting crime - first as Robin, then as Nightwing, and finally as Batman - have not jaded him to the degree you'd expect after seeing death, depravity, and degenerates every non-school night. He's jaded, but give him a hobo asking for money and he'll give them a fifty, tell them to use it to clean up and show up the next day, then help them find a job. Tell him his landlady and all the nice tenants in the building he lives in are going to be evicted due to greed and corruption? He'll buy the building using his trust fund, then allow them to stay at lower-than-market-value rents. He genuinely wants to help people, but it's all about having them help themselves in the end. This is no doormat laid out for your abuse; he wants to help, but there has to be some effort, or some way that his effort will make a difference.

Because that's what he's about: Making a difference. Why else would he spend eight hours a night prowling Gotham City, dispensing justice and upholding laws in ways that will get him shot at, ridiculed, and otherwise targeted? Being a vigilante is not only a thankless job, it's a downright dangerous one and he knows it, but that makes him all the more determined to make sure that there's no future little Dick Graysons to be deprived of parents and left alone in the world.

It takes determination to suit up and be out there every night and he has that in spades. Defeatism is not in his vocabulary, and there's a certain stubbornness that has had Dick bite off more than he can chew - see: his decision to take on the protection of Blüdhaven as a single agent, separate from the Batfamily. Or trying to hold together Gotham City in the aftermath of Batman's "death" by coordinating a massive network of fellow vigilantes. Even in taking Damian Wayne on as his Robin, no small effort when one considers the child raised by assassin's to be a lethal weapon and not a nonlethal vigilante. This is the guy that gets back up when he falls, and bounces back up when you push him. Say no? He'll find a way to make you say yes. There is no feat too large for him, a perception that's led him to be at odds with his mentor.

Yes, at odds. Being raised as the ward of Bruce Wayne and Batman did not an entirely complicit Dick make. There are rules and laws, both of which he carries a healthy respect for, but he also knows how to circumnavigate them without trespassing the wrong side of the law. He grew into his own person, not a sidekick, and all that Robin, his first crime fighting persona, could ever be is a sidekick. That's why he became Nightwing; it took years of trying to impress Bruce, being all that he could be for bits of praise, before he could realise that and become his own person - the one that put him at odds with Batman's expectations. A trend that continued when he took up the cowl of the Batman against the will of the "late" Bruce Wayne -- though this was no personal desire of his, but was necessary to stop Gotham City from degenerating into chaos and crime.

Like his mentor, Dick believes wholeheartedly that people need the chance to reform and that killing the repeat offender will only drag him down a dark path. He has a strong moral code that he will not deviate from, and he considers any vigilante that breaks that code to be no better than the criminals they fight. They may not be corrupt to the core, but they must atone for their crimes; he is not above this either. This is why, once upon a time, Dick Grayson actually turned himself in as an accomplice to murder for his role in the death of Blockbuster, for the fact he'd stood by and let it happen when he knew he could have saved him.

However complicit to that code he is, he did come to realise that he could not forever be in Batman's shadow - indeed, he initially thought that his work as Robin would inherit him the title at some point and was offended when Bruce initially selected another person to be Batman in his place. Dick has independence and a strength of self that made him capable of both teamwork and leadership (see his time as a Teen Titan), but also of working on his own, taking on the same form of role as Batman, though one of unique identity. Well, until Batman went and "died" and he had to take up the same name and cowl.

Dick may have had arguments with Batman and Bruce Wayne over the years, but he retains respect for him and many others, Superman included. Prove yourself an inherently good person, and he will acknowledge that - maybe because proto-daddy failed in the compliment department. Have any degree of skill or strength and he'll respect that. This is not a dick-slapping contest (please, he gets beaten up enough with his night job) and he's not out to be king of the mountain, just to see that crime does not pay.

To the contrary, tell him he's made a positive difference and you will make Dick Grayson's day. Sure, he's a strong and independent type, but the lack of parents left something of a gap in his life that the emotionally-restrained Bruce Wayne could not fill. Praise, feedback, or insights; give them to Dick and he will love you forever. Without them, he can be painfully self-critical and will spend his time steeling himself for criticism wherever he might have fallen short.

That said, Dick is one of the most trustworthy people you could ever meet, commonly held as second only to Superman in the DC comics continuity. Genuine and dedicated, he's not about lying or snitching on people; he plays it straight and tends to expect the same, unless it's about facing down the other side of the law. Experience there has taught him to be cautious with trust.

This all makes him sound super-serious, but the original Batman has the trademark on that. Dick knows when to be serious, but when to kick back, make a hilarious quip, insert a pun, or just have fun. This is a guy in his late-twenties, out to face the world without having another mental breakdown and he's pretty sorted for that. A suave smartass, he can charm and jest with the best of them; this has bled less and less into his vigilante personae as time wears on, but Dick Grayson is not going to throw in the smile towel just yet. It's around friends, in particular, that he's the most goofy, but remember that nice guy? He comes out here, with a kind word or a helping hand to just about anyone that crosses his path.

Oh, yeah, and that kind word? It turns into many. Dick's likened himself as the talker among writers, otherwise known as the chatty party member. Life's taught him his limits and he plays within them, but when the job doesn't call for complete silence? He'll chat it up and the topics vary into a wide spectrum the longer you know him and the more he considers you his friend.

Short someone to chat with and Dick will turn it to himself. He talks his way through things, dissecting the options and finding the right reaction - and, man, can he do it fast. When his line snapped some sixty stories up, he used his thoughts as a way to supress panic and fear, working his way through the cause-and-effect of a half-dozen options as he plummeted at terminal velocity. In the middle of high-adrenaline situations, he keeps that ability to think - assessing and re-assessing every new detail so that very little can take him by surprise. This usually happens on the go, because he's the kind of guy that likes to work without a net and with only the guideline of a plan.

This all sounds like a Dick Grayson viewed through rose-coloured lenses, sure, but he tries hard to have his best foot forward. The thing is, he doesn't always think and that can lead said foot to be right in his mouth. He's a dick at times, both intentionally and not, and tends to take a long time to apologise when he's done fucked up.

Suddenly, a wild Tu Vishan appears!
Being faced with a world between life, dreaming, and death will not phase Dick all that much. This is a guy that's been faced with the realities of time travel, alternate dimensions, and a plethora of aliens. He'll take stock of the situation and learn everything that he can from the kedan en route to Keeliai, then scour every post that his console can load for details. After that, expect Batman to hit the roofs to get the full picture before he puts out a call to others, because he learned from the best that there are times to do your homework and waking up on the back of a giant turtle? Definitely one of them.

Appearance:
Dick Grayson happens to look startlingly like one Bruce Wayne, minus a handful of inches in height. It's not like Bruce has a thing for younger versions of himself or anything, a-hem. Just, ignore the majority Robin line.

Overall, he's fairly handsome with his blue eyes and black hair -- once upon a time it was long and luxurious, but lately it's been kept neat and short. Dick is also in ridiculously good shape, with well-earned musculature and equally well-earned scars marring just about every part of his body. Many of them are faded from a lifetime of vigilantism, but hey. It adds texture.

Abilities:
so I herd u liek cirkus trix
What a coincidence, so does he! Dick Grayson somersaulted out of the womb, learned to walk on the ol' highwire, and had his first date on the trapeze - or so you'd think, by the way this guy flips, flaps, and otherwise contorts his body in ways that defy the mind. Widely held as one of the most acrobatic characters in the DC comic continuity, he uses every circus trick and every gymnastic move to execute his daring stunts. He's got an amazing sense of balance and incredible flexibility that allows him to combat thugs and traverse the rooftops of Gotham City without breaking a sweat. This guy would take home all the Olympic gymnastics gold medals if given the chance.

thug-beating 101
Batman taught him this and Dick could go on to teach the course himself -- and has, to an extent. Martial arts, endurance training, and strength training have come together into a more-than-capable fighting machine. He thrives against multiple opponents and considers a room full of goons to be hardly an effort, wouldn't even make him break a sweat! Give him a more skilled opponent and he'll be careful, but also employ more tricks. It's about winning the fight and killing NONE OF THE VILLAINS, so a bit of playing dirty is gonna be forgiven in the grand scheme of things.

elementary, my dear robin
Grow up in the shadow of Batman, groomed to be Robin and intending to be the bat one day? You pick up the skills required to investigate crime without the assistance of things like, say, the police. In fact, you become remarkably better at it than many a trained officer. His detective skills are not quite at Batman's level, but he can deduce his way through most crimes and distinguish a cop from a mobster simply by their choice of execution. (Please, the landfill? He might as well put cement boots on him and tossed him in the bay.)

the boyiest of boy scouts
Be prepared does not cover what Dick does to make sure he gets through a night of surveillance or ends a crime spree. Hot soup to stave off the cold? Check! Voice-activated recorders in every thug-friendly joint this side of Blüdhaven to capture incriminating conversations? Got it! It pays to be ready and he tries his best to raise it to an artform. Whether he knows that things may go down or if he just wants to protect his apartment from burglars, he's got a practised knack at anticipating what the run-of-the-mill thug will try and aims to be prepared.

sleep? what am sleep?
Sleep is a luxury according to anyone that's ever donned a cowl or a domino mask. Juggling life and vigilantism is a handful, made much busier by involvement with the Justice League or Teen Titans (depending on the stage of his life). Dick manages it with a grin, but at the expense of sleep. Catnaps are his best friend, but he's good at psyching himself to stay awake during the long nights and even longer days that accompany his lifestyle. The original Batman is said to get three hours of sleep in two days during a slow time and his replacement will give no less.

Inventory:
Arriving as Batman means that he comes with one (1) redesigned Batsuit of Kevlar plating and weave. It's primarily grey in colour, with the exception of the cowl, cape, gauntlets, midsection, boots, and the bat emblem emblazoned over the chest (which is further reinforced with Kevlar). This is a uniform designed to be reminiscent of a bat and sixty times as intimidating, which is generally manages.

Part of the Batsuit the utility belt, the "Mary Poppins" bag of crimefighting perfection; no Batman worth his salt is caught outside the Batcave without one, trust you me. This belt has numerous compartments outfitted with various paraphernalia that comes in handy when beating the street. While the contents change depending on the case, his will come with the basic necessities:

>Mini first aid kit
>Various antitoxins
>Smoke/gas capsules
>Lock picking tolls
>Infrared flashlight
>Forensic analysis kit (including latent print tools)
>Micro-recorder with power source
>Grappling gun with cable
>Flexicuffs
>Miniature laser torch
>Rebreather/gas mask
>A taser-like unit with full charge
>Batarangs (a heavily stylised throwing star)
>Various incendiary capsules (including plastique & thermite)

This Batman also carries a pair of Escrima sticks made of a supposedly unbreakable polymer that he uses in combat. They have been tweaked to provide a solid charge, similar to a Taser, when jabbed at an opponent. It's a pressure sensitive mechanism and carries a limited charge.

Suite:
The Wood Sector is the best match for Dick, hands down. He, like the residents, is always in motion and generally too nice of a guy to be non-combative, and can be stubborn as all hell. Three floors would be the best match, which would give him one for living, one for working out, and one in which to be the Bat in the belfry.

In-Character Samples:
Third Person:
The air whistled past him, audio sensors in the cowl catching the sound and amplifying it so that he did not the slightest whisper of noise when the occasion demanded it - which it often did. When one was the Batman facing down a hoard of thugs, it became critical to catch every detail beyond what any could expect of a man wearing, in essence, a hood with two eyeholes. Forget all the advancements -- the lenses with a heads-up interface linked to a field processor, the microphones that caught the slightest sounds, the waterproofing that protected it all -- and it became just that.

In honest opinion, it didn't suit him. The Batsuit had been designed by Bruce Wayne and meant for Bruce Wayne. Wearing it in his stead, blessed and ordered by the man to continue to role, Dick felt all too often how it wasn't fully his the way that the fingerstripes and domino mask of Nightwing had been. Too oft, he felt heavy with it, the burden of Kevlar weave and reputation both dragging him down from the rooftops with greater momentum, greater meaning than he'd had on his own.

He knew it important. He knew Bruce wanted him in this role and that -- somehow -- he'd managed to keep Gotham City together for him. Managed to don the cowl, albeit against his orders, and fill the boots. But, there would always be an emptiness to it. A comparison that hovered in the back of his mind and prodded him to do it better, because he was now the Batman and didn't dare give anything but three hundred percent. Too many people counted on him for it to be any less.

Like the Robin in freefall next to him, brow scrunched up in some unpleasant mood as he waited for the right moment to fire the grappling line. Damian Wayne, the newest Robin, had come far from the pretentious assassin that had burst into the Batclan, but he could still stand to relax a degree and smile. The lack therein had to be the Wayne genetics coming into play, but he could work with that. They could work together -- the way that Damian had kept asking about when Bruce returned, proving that he'd made an impression on him. That insistence had touched him, made him feel like less of a failure in the role of Batman, and inspired him a degree to continue when Bruce ordered it for the sake of Batman Incorporated.

"Your face won't freeze if you smile, Robin," he shouted, aiming his grappling gun as the next building rose up.

"Tch!" was the only response, to which he simply grinned and counted down on a gloved hand the three-two-one -- FIRE. They hit it simultaneously, twin lines catching on the building and catching their weight in a deep swing towards the ground. He pulled himself up, tucking into a double somersault before coming down in the midst of the gang, Robin landing smoothly beside him and unaffected by the startled grunts and slow rise of panic triggered by the appearance of Gotham's Dark (replacement) Knight and Boy Wonder.

Network:

[The video feed comes up on one Dick Grayson, adopted son of Bruce Wayne and, let's face it, there's some similarity there to make one question exactly how adopted he is. Except for the fact his grin is 100% sincere and lacking the vapidity of the playboy that Mr. Wayne so aptly employs.

Which is good, because he looks about the opposite of a playboy in the way he's leaned away from the console and perched on the back of the chair. He toys with three balls bought at the market, shifting them around in his palms as he looks at the camera with all the ease of a lifetime performer.]


Now, I've seen butchers, bakers, and even a few candlestickmakers. [He tosses a ball up for each of them, starting a slow juggle.] But where are the clowns? The lion tamers? The big top? Come on! No trip on the back of a giant turtle's complete without the bearded lady to give us a tour. Though, I'd take an unbearded one if she'd like to step up? [His expression, once again, is more goof that graceful, but what can he say? He was raised with the elephants and subtlety is not their specialty.

Except for the fact that this entire post is a lure, meant to see what the Foreigner population of Keeliai has to tell him about something familiar, to maybe give him a gauge of how similar of world they all come from. Sure, it's not something he's plotted and planned for hours, but a plan on the fly is still a plan in his books.]
acrobatical: 10 out of 10 Nightwings approve of this comment (NW: Approved!)
My writing is only as good as the feedback I get on it. If you have any comment regarding Nightwing's characterisation, my play style, or something in general, leave it here! I may not respond right away, but I consider each and every piece of feedback that I receive and try to incorporate it into my RP.

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via tag | network | logs (alt)


January 2012:
- Post: This place has all the good toys
- Log: Terry | Batfeels, the first encounter

February 2012:
- Log: Tommy | AcroBATical
- Event: Speed Dating
- Thread: Starfire | Suddenly robbing the cradle??
- Thread: Wanda | Interrogation techniques
- Thread: Tim | Little bro!
- Log: Batfeels, the second coming
- Event: Singles auction
- Event: Space Prom | Cathy
- Event: Space Prom | Wanda
- Event: Space Prom | Freeze
- Event: Space Prom | Pepper
- Event: Space Prom | Molly
- Log: Starfire | Long time no see
- Log: Terry | This town ain't big enough for two Batmans
- Thread: Aisha | Love at first rifle sights

March 2012:
- Thread: Molly | Missing green giant
- Thread: Samus | Phazon
- Thread: Zhaneel | Rough landing
- Threads: Parker | Missing aliens report
- Thread: Tim | Phazon follow-up
- Thread: Sean | St. Patrick's Day
- Thread: Murphy | Amnesia and you
- Thread: Quinn | Rift bombs
- Thread: Tim | Little Robin red breast?

April 2012:
- Log: Tim | Batsassins!
- Log: Aisha | 'Til knife do us part
- Post: That pins and needles sensation
- Thread: Terry | Egg-babies
- Thread: Steve | Bitty!
- Post: Sitrep and Batfeels
- Thread: Murphy | Babby police!
- Thread Conner | Fear toxin
- Thread: Tails | Fear toxin
- Post: How-to survive fear toxin
- Thread: Molly | Fear toxin
- Thread: Sakura | Fear toxin
- Thread: Katniss | Fear toxin
- Thread: Arle | Fear toxin
- Log: Emma | Fear toxin

May 2012:
- Thread: Gibson | Fear toxin
- Thread: Lara | Performances
- Log: Steve | Hostel
- Thread: Clove | The vacation explanation
- Thread: Inara | Superstition & luck
- Thread: Jin | Meditative techniques
- Thread: Tony | Vacation
- Thread: Damian | Robin... squared?
- Log: Tim | Damian sitrep
- Log: Terry | Bruce & fear toxin
- Thread: Miranda | Evil overlords
- Thread: Aisha | Miss me?
acrobatical: (Default)
Player Information
Your Nickname: Alex! Again!
OOC Journal: [personal profile] reignsdown
Under 18? Not a chance
Email/IM: reignsdown (gmail/plurk/aim)
Characters Played at Singularity:
Loki Odinson | [personal profile] trollololoki | activity
Violet Parr | [personal profile] personalbubble | activity

Character Information
Name: Richard John "Dick" Grayson / Nightwing
Name of Canon: Nightwing (DC; character series branched out from Batman)
Canon/AU/Other Game CR: Canon
Reference: Dick Grayson
Canon Point: End of Nightwing #38; on the mend in body and maybe with Babs -- SUDDENLY, SACROSANCT

Setting:
This is Earth. Sure, we've all heard that one before, same as we've heard the story about superheroes fighting to defend our rights against mobsters, Mafioso, and meanies from all walks of life. Toss in the occasional league of heroes, a few conglomerations of villains, and some social commentary about what drives people and civilisation to the brink of self-destruction and you? Have the grounds for your basic comic universe.

That's the start of where Dick Grayson comes from, where this dude called Superman flies in the sky and represents peace, justice, and the American dream. There are super humans and aliens that fight side-by-side, representing good, evil, and even neutrality. The abnormal is quite normal, and it comes about by industrial accidents, extraterrestrial birthrights, and mystical willpower attached to a Crackerjack ring. The world gets endangered and saved every week or so, and it all happens under the front of dozens donning colourful uniforms and ridiculous names to uphold whatever crusade for rights they have decided to represent.

Man, pretty snazzy! Or, so you think.

The thing is, life's not so awesome for the people that aren't supercharged with radiation, speed force, or a word from our sponsers. You'd think that a world jampacked with things like the Justice League and Teen Titans, the sidekick variation, would be pretty just, but reality is, for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. For every superhero, there is a supervillain. Crime is, ridiculously enough, on the rise, as though the criminals actually believe that the greater their population and incidence, the greater that chance that some of them might get away with it.

There are two cities in this world that actually prove that theory true.

Take Gotham City first. Permanently lodged in the film noir era, it is a city deeply rooted in traditions - the first and foremost being one of crime. In Gotham, corruption starts from the ground up, beginning with the petty thugs and filtering up through the lieutenants, the bosses, the villains, and generally petering out somewhere in the lower echelons of the police force. The problem is, there are a lot of people at the bottom rung of this and they do a damn fine job of keeping the crime rate high.

Then there's Bludhaven, which is sister city to Gotham and stands more modernly than her dark counterpart. Thing is, the corruption here starts from the top and filters down; the mayor is corrupt, same as the police, and bleeds out from there. Honesty is never the best policy around there, and trying it will generally get you killed. The crime rate is technically leaps and bounds ahead of Gotham's, but with a police force that doesn't make a habit of arresting criminals, pressing charges, or submitting its problems to national scrutiny, there's no reliable measure of it.

Two cities, two examples of the model that more crime means more success - hey, if you keep throwing beer bottles in the ocean, eventually the dolphins will be alcoholics. They are proof that a world of superheroes still has its problems, especially as there are no superheroes defending what's right here.

Gotham City is where this world introduced the concept of vigilantism - a key concept to Dick. You see, crime in Gotham is fought by the police, but for those villains that keep evading, or the ones working where the cops can't see, there's a self-styled crime-fighter named Batman that sweeps up the mess and takes out the trash.

Who is Batman? To start, he's this guy that wanders around Gotham City in the dark of night, dressed like a bat enthusiast. Officially, only a handful know that he happens to be a ridiculously rich philanthropist playboy by the name of Bruce Wayne (Tony Stark, eat your heart out). Criminals know and fear him as the Dark Knight, or that dude who breaks up all their crime rings. He's been doing it for years and has a reputation that precedes him. Over time, he's even had partners (Robins one, two, and three; Batgirl; to name a few) in his vigilante ways, along with the trust of the police chief.

The big thing is that this guy's a normal human, not even one bitten by a radioactive bat. What drives him is not some deep, alien purpose, but a deeply rooted obsession for vengeance inspired by the death of his parents. Because, in Gotham? It's tradition for all vigilantes to be inspired by the traumatic death of their parents (Dick fits this mould, since his parents died in a traumatic accident).

Actually, Dick fits the vigilante role in a lot of ways and the role of vigilante is actually how he fits into this universe. Batman's first Robin happened to be no more than tiny, baby (well, twelve year old) Dick Grayson, the ward of Bruce Wayne and the first partner of Gotham's most angst-ridden, justice-obsessed detective. Trained by the Dark Knight himself (man, are you getting tired of the pseudonyms for Bats too?), he's arguably one of the best non-super heroes that this world has on offer.

That'd explain why he's kept up the role into his twenties, taking on the identity of Nightwing and taking over the protection of Bludhaven.

Personality:

You'd think that watching your family die horribly in some entirely preventable accident would leave a man terrible scarred, traumatised, and entirely too downtrodden by survivor's guilt to do more than brood dramatically and take his quest for vengeance to the streets of Gotham. And, hey, you'd be right! ...if this was Batman.

Nothing against Bruce Wayne's coping skills, but Dick Grayson went another route when he watched his parents - the Flying Graysons - fall from the trapeze and die in the centre of the circus and it's more than in part due to Bruce that he did so. Broken with grief and tossed into a troubled system, it took being taken in as his ward and, ultimately, given the chance to act as partner to Batman, that let him come out infinitely less troubled by his psychological scars.

The support that he received in Wayne Manor and the entirely platonic, legal love that he was exposed to which allowed Dick to grow as a person and not be consumed by the darkness. All things said and done, he actually came out as a pretty nice guy. Not even a nice guy so much as the nice guy - you know, the one that everyone goes to for advice, help, or just a chill afternoon of hangouts?

Dick is not half the dick his name implies and his years fighting crime - first as Robin and then as Nightwing - have not jaded him to the degree you'd expect after seeing death, depravity, and degenerates every non-school night. Give him a hobo asking for money and he'll give them a fifty, tell them to use it to clean up and show up the next day, then help them find a job. Tell him his landlady and all the nice tenants in the building he lives in are going to be evicted due to greed and corruption? He'll buy the building using his trust fund, then allow them to stay at lower-than-market-value rents. He genuinely wants to help people, but it's all about having them help themselves in the end. This is no doormat laid out for your abuse; he wants to help, but there has to be some effort, or some way that his effort will make a difference.

Because that's what he's about: Making a difference. Why else would he spend eight hours a night prowling Bludhaven, dispensing justice and upholding laws in ways that will get him shot at, ridiculed, and otherwise targeted? Being Nightwing is not only a thankless job, it's a downright dangerous one and he knows it, but that makes him all the more determined to make sure that there's no future little Dick Graysons to be deprived of parents and left alone in the world, maybe not so lucky as to get a benefactor as sincere as Bruce was.

It takes determination to suit up and be out there every night and he has that in spades. Defeatism is not in his vocabulary, and there's a certain stubbornness that has had Dick bite off more than he can chew - see: his decision to take on the protection of Bludhaven as a single agent, separate from the Batfamily. This is the guy that gets back up when he falls, and bounces back up when you push him. Say no? He'll find a way to make you say yes. There is no feat too large for him, a perception that's led him to be at odds with his mentor.

Yes, at odds. Being raised as the ward of Bruce Wayne and Batman did not an entirely complicit Dick make. There are rules and laws, both of which he carries a healthy respect for, but he also knows how to circumnavigate them without trespassing the wrong side of the law. He grew into his own person, not a sidekick, and all that Robin, his first crimefighting persona, could ever be is a sidekick. That's why he became Nightwing; it took years of trying to impress Bruce, being all that he could be for bits of praise, before he could realise that and become his own person - the one that put him at odds with Batman's expectations.

Oh, he did not refute them entirely. Like his mentor, Dick believes wholeheartedly that people need the chance to reform and that killing the repeat offender will only drag him down a dark path. He has a strong moral code that he will not deviate from, and he considers any vigilante that breaks that code to be no better than the criminals they fight. They may not be corrupt to the core, but they must atone for their crimes; he is not above this either. Later, past his canon point, Dick Grayson actually turns himself in as an accomplice to murder for his role in the death of Blockbuster, the very man that he came to Bludhaven to stop.

However complicit to that code he is, he did come to realise that he could not forever be in Batman's shadow - indeed, he initially thought that his work as Robin would inherit him the title at some point and was offended when Bruce initially selected another person to be Batman in his place. Dick has independence and a strength of self that made him capable of both teamwork and leadership (see his time as a Teen Titan), but also of working on his own, taking on the same form of role as Batman, though one of unique identity.

Dick may have had arguments with Batman and Bruce Wayne over the years, but he retains respect for him and many others, Superman included. Prove yourself an inherently good person, and he will acknowledge that - maybe because proto-daddy failed in the compliment department. Have any degree of skill or strength and he'll respect that. This is not a dick-slapping contest (please, he gets beaten up enough with his night job) and he's not out to be king of the mountain, just to be Nightwing and see that crime does not pay.

To the contrary, tell him he's made a positive difference and you will make Dick Grayson's day. Sure, he's a strong and independent type, but the lack of parents left something of a gap in his life that the emotionally-restrained Bruce Wayne could not fill. Praise, feedback, or insights; give them to Dick and he will love you forever. Without them, he can be painfully self-critical and will spend his time steeling himself for criticism wherever he might have fallen short.

That said, Dick is one of the most trustworthy people you could ever meet, second only to Superman. Genuine and dedicated, he's not about lying or snitching on people; he plays it straight and tends to expect the same, unless it's about facing down the other side of the law. Experience there has taught him to be cautious with trust.

This all makes him sound super-serious, but Batman has the trademark on that. Dick knows when to be serious, but when to kick back, make a hilarious quip, insert a pun, or just have fun. This is a guy in his mid-twenties, out to face the world without having a mental breakdown and he's pretty sorted for that. A suave smartass, he can charm and jest with the best of them; this has bled less and less into his Nightwing persona as time wears on, but Dick Grayson is not going to throw in the smile towel just yet. It's around friends, in particular, that he's the most goofy, but remember that nice guy? He comes out here, with a kind word or a helping hand to just about anyone that crosses his path.

Oh, yeah, and that kind word? It turns into many. Dick's likened himself as the talker among writers, otherwise known as the chatty party member. Life's taught him his limits and he plays within them, but when the job doesn't call for complete silence? He'll chat it up and the topics vary into a wide spectrum the longer you know him and the more he considers you his friend.

Short someone to chat with and Dick will turn it to himself. He talks his way through things, dissecting the options and finding the right reaction - and, man, can he do it fast. When his line snapped some sixty stories up, he used his thoughts as a way to supress panic and fear, working his way through the cause-and-effect of a half-dozen options as he plummeted at terminal velocity. In the middle of high-adrenaline situations, he keeps that ability to think - assessing and re-assessing every new detail so that very little can take him by surprise.

Abilities, Weaknesses, and Power Limitation Suggestions:
so I herd u liek cirkus trix
What a coincidence, so does he! Dick Grayson somersaulted out of the womb, learned to walk on the ol' highwire, and had his first date on the trapeze - or so you'd think, by the way this guy flips, flaps, and otherwise contorts his body in ways that defy the mind. Widely held as one of the most acrobatic characters in the DC comic continuity, he uses every circus trick and every gymnastic move to execute his daring Nightwing stunts. He's got an amazing sense of balance and incredible flexibility that allows him to combat thugs and traverse the rooftops of Bludhaven without breaking a sweat. This guy would take home all the Olympic gymnastics gold medals if given the chance.

thug-beating 101
Batman taught him this and Nightwing could go on to teach the course himself. Martial arts, endurance training, and strength training have come together into a more-than-capable fighting machine. He thrives against multiple opponents and considers a room full of goons to be hardly an effort, wouldn't even make him break a sweat! Give him a more skilled opponent and he'll be careful, but also employ more tricks. It's about winning the fight and killing NONE OF THE VILLAINS, so a bit of playing dirty is gonna be forgiven in the grand scheme of things.

elementary, my dear nightwing
Grow up in the shadow of Batman, groomed to be Robin and intending to be the bat one day? You pick up the skills required to investigate crime without the assistance of things like, say, the police. In fact, you become remarkably better at it than many a trained officer. Nightwing's detective skills are nowhere near Batman's, but he can deduce his way through most crimes and distinguish a cop from a mobster simply by their choice of execution. (Please, the landfill? He might as well put cement boots on him and tossed him in the bay.)

the boyiest of boy scouts
Be prepared does not cover what Dick does to make sure he gets through a night of surveillance or ends a crime spree. Hot soup to stave off the cold? Check! Voice-activated recorders in every thug-friendly joint this side of Bludhaven to capture incriminating conversations? Got it! It pays to be ready and he tries his best to raise it to an artform. Whether he knows that things may go down or if he just wants to protect his apartment from burglars, he's got a practised knack at anticipating what the run-of-the-mill thug will try and aims to be prepared.

sleep? what am sleep?
Work an eight hour day in a bar, put in eight hours of crimefighting as Nightwing, and have a social life? Dick does all this, but at the expense of sleep. Catnaps are his best friend, but he's good at psyching himself to stay awake during the long nights and even longer days that accompany his lifestyle. Batman is said to get three hours of sleep in two days during a slow time and Nightwing will give no less.

Inventory:
Dick comes underequipped, as far as your standard Nightwing goes. Just prior to being Sacrosancted, he wore his armoured, otherwise skintight black pants of his Nightwing costume and a Barbara Gordon. He arrives sans-Babs, but otherwise intact. Tucked into the pants was his mask, a black, bird-like accessory with polarised lenses.

That's right! He comes with none of his toys and can be expected to haunt the Junkyard and job boards to get up the supplies and capital to amend this. Since he also comes weak and on the mend from sickness and injury, it might be a while before he gets up that momentum.

Appearance: 001 | 002 (aka: dat ass)

What's that in the sky? Is it a bird? A plane? Nope. It's Nightwing's ass - considered to be fairly appealing, it's generally the part of him most observed by the ground-dwelling during his rooftop adventures. That defining feature aside (this just in: Nightwing's secret identity revealed by comparing assprints), Dick Grayson is the boy next door. Attractive and well-built, he stands around 5'10" and is a bundle of lithe muscle. His hair is dark and relatively short, having recently been trimmed during a fight with some of Bludhaven's costumed criminals (his ponytail is gone; mourning to commence at two).

Age: 23~25; Dick is referred to as the Twenty-Something Wonder by Oracle for good reason.

OC/AU Justification
If AU, How is Your Version Different From Canon, and How Will That Come Across? N/A
If OC, Did You Run Your Character Through a Mary-Sue Litmus Test? N/A
And What Did You Score? N/A

Samples
Log Sample:

Love was like dynamite, exploding inside his head at the touch of her lips. She'd come too close and that lost them both in the moment; he suddenly had her in his arms, supporting her while she held him the way they could be - should be, if you asked him and if she agreed. An alarm sounded in the background that he ignored, too busy with the exhilaration that coursed through him, almost tearing him apart.

Too much, way too much; his senses were whelmed, then overwhelmed. Everything vanished and he felt on cloud nine, but he could live with that if it meant Babs.

Wait.

Reality smacked back, dragging him with it, but he was no longer sitting on a stool in her bathroom. Dick felt gravity plunge him downwards and he reacted, assessing the sudden fall in Gotham knew where. Twenty, maybe thirty feet to go; he saw scrap metal, some recognisable as part of something and some not. That was going to hurt, but he let his reflexes kick in, twisting in midair to come down on the pile with his guiding the fall, tucking in with his body for the roll, then pushing out to leap down what remained.

Pain came standard with the job and he shrugged off what bounded with the metal that nipped at his hands and feet. The vertigo that slammed into him? Not so much, but he staggered only a few steps at the bottom of the heap until it passed. Babs had electric lips, no doubt about it; that, and he was still weak from being the Blackgate punching bag with the year's worst headcold.

Dick shook it off and pulled out his mask, pressing it against his face until it held; another reflex, this one to protect his identity when things went weird. He couldn't lament too long; time to focus and assess. The chill in the air made him think of Victor Fries - if it plunged another twenty degrees, maybe. No Babs to warm him up, no sign of her at all; that troubled him more than he'd admit aloud. Debris everywhere, but mostly metal; it lacked the concrete graveyard that Gotham had been turned into after the quake. Bludhaven had its share of ugly days, but he'd seen it recent enough to know --

"Welcome to Sacrosanct. Please watch your step."

Dick grinned at the voice and turned to face... nothing. After growing up with Batman, randomly disappearing voices were nothing new to him and he shrugged. "You were just a bit late on the last part," he pointed out, looking around. Could be a pre-recorded message, or could be that the speaker was still around - maybe he could lure someone out. "You got a name, or are we going to have to play twenty-questions? I'm game."

Network Sample:

[audio]
This is a pretty sweet deal.

[Meet Nightwing's voice, all smooth and respectfully in awe.]

Looks like it's got extended battery performance. Gonna be perfect for those long nights spent on the city rooftops. If this place can be called a city.

[Audio truncates into a quick video of Bludhaven's not-so-caped crusader; Nightwing is wearing his mask, but that doesn't hide his appreciative glee or the low whistle to match. Immediately after, it switches to text.]

Three types of input and output? Be still my beating heart.

[Audio comes back online a second later.]

The do-it-yourself encryption's neat. Bet you could listen in on some thug's plans and have half a dozen conversations going at the same time - and no one the wiser. I could use a dozen of these back home.

[This? This is not disappointment by any means. The exact opposite: Nightwing is enjoying all the treats that Sacrosanct has to offer.]

Toys aside, you could do me a favour and direct me to the big guy on campus. No disrespect to computers, but my experience is that there's usually someone behind the scenes running every "smart" AI.

[Come on, who hasn't seen and learned from the Wizard of Oz?]

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Richard "Dick" Grayson | Nightwing | Batman

January 2012

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