Ice Machine

(Errm…Womble?)

Yeah?

(…you do…well, you do realize what you’re doing?)

Yep. Cool huh?

(…I suppose…don’t you find it a bit…weird, though? You know what HH would say. And you’d slap him for saying it.)

True. On the other hand, Nibbles, I’M DRIVING A TWENTY FOOT MECH THAT SHOOTS ICE BEAMS!

(…um. And?)

Who cares if I’m standing on the Doc’s lap? We’re both men, and I’m a penguin. May as well use my avian charm when it’s an advantage- he works the gas, I steer, and between us we come ever closer to solving the crime of the missing cities! And don’t you dare tell HH about this. Our hairy red friend has a very active Tumblr account*.

(…yes sir.)

Besides, this way I’ve got a good solid body between me and the red, just in case she decides to go all- OWWWWW!

“-I thought I told you to stop using that sort of language around me? Honestly, you’re pretty thick for a penguin.”

“Is there a problem, Lil?”

“No, no. Your pet just hit a bump. Didn’t you notice?”

“…not really.”

Ha! For someone who can mind-read, you’re still a damn awful lia-AAAAGGHHH! Quit it!

“Are you sure about having it on your lap, Vic? It’s slowing us right down. I doubt it’s even house-trained, judging by the smell.”

…like you’re one to talk…**

“It’s funny, but I swear they’ve gone quiet. The robot asked me to get them to Wayne Tower, before you met us at the lab, and they clearly understand whatever I say to them. I haven’t heard a word from them in a while though.”

“They’re simple creatures. Particularly the penguin. Who knows what goes on in that tiny, tiny little head…?”

“I suppose. But penguins are cute. And it needed my help.”

“…you’re too soft. I would’ve eaten one and sold the other. Penguin is meant to be quite nice cooked slow. I know a chef who could do it for us, if you fancy trying it later.”

“…maybe…”

…you have got to be kidding me…like I’m gonna let that happen! What happened to “cute”? And Nibbles, without further adieu- I told you so!

(Hmmm. She’s right, though.)

Wha-?

(You do have a tiny, tiny head. Really small. It must be easy to become confused.)

You can’t start picking on me too! I swear, soon as this is over, I’m inviting our friend round for Robot Workshop Part Two- what the heck was that?

“Huh. Sounds like someone’s got Arkham again. What’s Harley been up to recently?”

“Playing safe, I heard. This isn’t her. I’d know.”

“…hmmm. Step aside, little friend. You can play some more later.”

“Quark qUARK?”(What’s going on?)

“Someone breached Arkham again. Which means the Bat will be arriving to clear things up, any time soon…”

“Quark!”(The Bat? As in, Batman?)

“Who else?”

…what’s HH got to do with it? Does he work there?

“Quark-quark-qUArkkk!” (What’s Batman done?)

“Ha! Watch and learn, kid. I personally don’t mind the guy that much, to be honest, but he threatened to hurt Nora and…well, he deserves everything he gets. He doesn’t learn from his mistakes.”

“Quark?” (So what’s he done now?)

“He threatened Nora- that’s what. Very big mistake. I’m still teaching him about that one.”

…oh.

W

*Mostly pictures of fruit. There isn’t much else that interests a primate working with the largest repository of books in the entirety of the known universe***.

**At this point, Womble began to start thinking in grumbles. Even people like “Lil” don’t tend to bother with the effort of figuring these out.

***The second largest happens to be HH’s “bookshelf”, an entity so vast that parts of it have begun to develop brain cells.

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