Karen had dealt with stalkers before. Given, the last one was a 12 year old from the Bronx, but Fisher hadn't been a bad guy, so maybe this was just someone trying to be nice. Albeit in a very intense, vaguely creepy way? Most capes had some pretty severe issues to begin with, so maybe this was a kind expression. She hoped.
An hour after arriving at work, Karen began to clean out her inbox. It was mostly the standard mix of business spam (loans! Roof cleaning! Insurance!), actually vital business emails (stats, projects, and numbers for the quarter), and a few goofy messages from business friends. Wayne Tech sent her their standard "thanks for working with us on this Valentine's Day" e-card. Kord Industries' CEO had sent her a bad FWD: FWD: FWD: RE: email joke. Zatanna had sent her an e-ticket to her show that night, with an email note of "in case you go stag tonight. Like every other night. Ees uoy ereht." Maybe she'd send that one to Diana, but she was fairly sure Zatanna had likely beaten her to that already.
Among these emails was a generic e-card, sent by and e-card website proxy. She clicked on the card and it revealed an animated Cupid shooting an arrow through a cartoon heart, replete with eyes, a mouth, and Micky Mouse-like limbs. When the arrow hit the heart, it's eyes turned into little x's and its tongue stuck out. The words, "Bullseye, Valentine!" appeared on the screen. Weirdly morbid for an e-card, which gave her some insight into who her secret admirer might be.
She prayed to Rao, God, Buddah, whoever, that it wasn't Ollie.
Just to assure herself that it wasn't anyone from the Arrow clan (she recalled when Roy tried to put the moves on Hawkgirl), she traced the card to see what the sender's IP Address was.
She typed for a bit, and after some digging, she found it: 6. She frowned. Something was wrong about that. It was her own IP Address, from her computer here at work. The computer she was sitting at and typing on.
Karen's stomach grumbled and her paranoid thoughts were interrupted. She realized it was definitely lunch time. Actually, way past lunch time.
As she rose from her desk, the office door opened and Nicco came in, "I've got a delivery for you boss." He handed her a styrofoam container.
She blinked at it and squinted an eye. "What is this?"
Nicco shrugged. "Dunno, a hot dog cart guy brought it to the front door and said it was ordered for you."
"Was it Rex?" Karen asked, referring to her favorite vender, who was usually somewhere around Penn Station this time of day.
He shook is head no, and Karen sighed inwardly. Okay, so. She wasn't dealing with a major stalker. Just a...minor one?
She opened the box to see three hot dogs piled high with steaming hot chili, yellow and white cheese melting on top. Her stomach grumbled; chili cheese dogs were her favorite.
Nicco leaned against her desk. "Looks like you've got a secret admirer." He said with a slight smirk.
She shot him a dirty look. "I swear, Nicco, if it's you..."
"Boss. Karen. Kara." He shook his head earnestly. "I swear it wasn't me. Although maybe I should take some queues; is this why you've been so weird all day?"
She frowned slightly, nodding reticently. "I woke up and there was breakfast and flowers..."
"A break in?" She shook her head no. "Atlee?"
"Nope, out of town."
Nicco squinted. "And then?"
"Okay, well, everyone knows you like those."
She nodded and shrugged. "But, I also got an e-card."
"Sent from my own computer."
"Ah. Well that's...very distressing."
"And now this."
"Well, the day will be over soon enough. And you're, like, nigh-invulnerable." She chuckled a little and smiled softly. "I think you got this, boss. And if you need back up, you know who to call." He jabbed his thumb at his chest with a grin.
Karen laughed and smiled. "You're the best back up a girl could ask for." She gave him a quick, firm hug. He hugged her back. There was an awkward pause, and Nicco headed out with a nod of his head. Karen dug into her chili cheese dogs. They were good. Super good.
The rest of the work day was uneventful. Karen wrapped up a few contracts, and they made some good headway on a big project. She decided to take a fly around before going home, and left through the roof of the building in costume.
It was a calm evening. As the sun began to set, the brisk air blowing against her face, she relished the moment. Snow began to pepper the air, sticking in her hair, fluttering against her cape. Power Girl closed her eyes for a moment, tilting her head against the breeze, letting the snow caress her face. Then she headed home.
Stinky meowed a greeting when she entered her apartment from the secret hatch in the roof. She went to rub the cat's head when she saw he had a little green and yellow bow tied around his neck.
He lifted his back leg and scratched at the ribbon. The motion revealed a red pendant at the center of the bow that had been hidden by Stinky's fur. The pendent was shaped like a bird. Karen went through her mental Rolodex of capes. Unfortunately, a lot of them used birds as symbols. A lot of them used red, yellows, and greens in their costumes, too. Heck, even if it was a Robin, there were about twenty of them (half of which were definitely underage).
She sighed and scratched Stinky's head, moving to her bedroom. Just as she had changed into her lounge clothes, she heard a knock on the door. A quick scan told her it was an uptight looking man in a butler-y uniform. She opened the door.
"Miz Starr." The man presented her with a box. "I've been tasked with delivering this to you, and then delivering you in the limousine outside."
Another scan confirmed that, indeed there was a limousine outside. She took the box, "who is it from?"
"I'm afraid I'm not at liberty to say, but you will learn soon enough." He sniffed. "I will be here to escort you when you are ready."
She squinted. "There's no way I can get out of this, is there?"
"I'm afraid not, Miz Starr." He mouth twinged into a slight smirk.
"Noted." She closed the door and opened the box. Inside it, underneath soft blue tissue paper, was a costume Karen recognized very well.
It was the horrible white-and-blue costume she had worn during her time with Justice League International. She had only worn it a few months, eventually changing to a white-and-yellow full bodysuit after Crimson Fox and Booster Gold had made one too many comments about the diamond shaped cutout and 80's headband.
She rolled her eyes and pulled it on with a sigh. A few moments later, she opened the door. The chauffeur was still there, standing stiffly. He held a coat up to her. "Miz Starr."
She pulled the trench coat on and followed him down to the car. He opened the door and ushered her in.
Karen watched the lights pass by as the car drove. She knew the route well, they seemed to be headed to Rockefeller Plaza.
The car stopped by the skating rink outside of 30 Rock. The door opened. "He requested you meet him," he pointed up to the gargoyles. "Up there."
She nodded and climb out of the car. "Thank you."
"It has been a pleasure." He nodded curtly and shut the door behind her. Climbing into the driver's seat, he drove off without another word.
Karen raised an eyebrow and floated up to her favorite perch. A caped figure sat atop one of the statues. He stood when she landed on the level. He stepped into the light and she recognized a green pixie boot, followed by a pair of long, muscled, bare legs.
"Wow," Karen raised an eyebrow. "I've never even seen Dick in the famous scale-y panties."
Jason Todd cracked a rare smile and pulled his domino mask off. "I'm glad you didn't get me confused with him." He brushed his hair back from his eyes with a small snort.
"Well, the hair kind of helps." She pointed to the white streak that ran through his bangs.
He shrugged and leaned back, adjusting his tunic a little awkwardly.
"Okay, so...I mean, I appreciate everything today, the creepiness aside, but...why?"
Jason perched back on a gargoyle. "I figured two people...part of the two iconic super families, but still...forgotten." He to took a slight breath. "I figured two people with such screwed up histories would get along."
Karen let out a soft laugh. "Alone on Valentine's Day?"
"Well, clearly neither of us are." He slid over and patted the wing next to him, gesturing for her to sit.
She floated over and sat down next to him with a small smile. "Ah yes, the two red headed stepchildren."
He laughed. "Together at least. I bet we're making our 'daddies,'" his voice dripped with poison, "proud." He rolled his eyes.
Karen snorted. There was a moment of silence and then Karen put her hand on top of his. "Hey..."
"Did you know there was a time I thought I was Atlantean?"
Jason laughed. "No shit."
He held her hand softly, and they chatted as the snow fell down on the ice skaters of 30 Rock.