And maybe, it occurred to him, as he slid out of his car a few blocks down from the home residence of Robert Young, it was a good thing he hadn't slept. At the moment he was too concerned about getting this done and getting to bed that how wrong it was didn't apply. Get the paper signed, get it to Shreck, and worry about remorse when he'd gotten eight hours - twelve? maybe he'd call out tomorrow or something - of sleep. That was all the mattered.
Blinking to clear his vaguely sidetracked mind, he shuddered briefly as dark eyelashes scraped the inside of his burlap mask, almost soundlessly. Whisper of noise or not, it was like nails on a chalkboard to him, and immediately he was a hundred times more awake. Well, at least burlap was good for something, he decided, as he reached for the briefcase in the passenger's seat.
Snapping it open, Crane went to the compartment hidden under the main space of the case, and withdrew a handful of vials stored there. Examining them briefly, he snapped one into each of the injectors at his wrists - which he'd sewn into the gloves to administer the gas when he turned his hands a certain way. And then, once he was certain they were in place and they weren't going to go off randomly, he placed the remaining vials in slots in his belt.
The briefcase closed and replaced on the passenger's seat a moment later, and he turned to close the door only to stop. On whim of his sleep-deprivation addled brain, he grabbed the silver zippo he kept in the center console of his car, flicked it open and on once to make sure it worked, and then shoved it into his pocket.
With that, he stalked towards the house, and as he did so, he was immediately glad he'd brought the lighter. Why? Because it occurred to him that he had no real weapon. Oh, sure, he had the fear gas, but that was only something he could use after he got the signature he needed - after all, it was a little hard to get a raving lunatic to sign something. And something someone didn't know what did - which he doubted that Young did - made a very poor threat. Fire, however? Fire was a universal, primal human fear. If Young didn't comply, he'd simply threaten to burn his house down.
Cheap, maybe, but definitely effective.
And it wasn't like he'd actually do it. Max had, after all, offer to make this little mess even more worth his while if he made it look like an accident - or at very least innocent - and he doubted burning the place down would accomplish that. Nor would breaking the window and that, now that he was at the side window, certainly looked like the only way in. Unless the door was unlocked. Which he doubted, seeing as how this was a business man's house. Still, he decided, it couldn't hurt to check ... and it was, unfortunately, locked. A frown poisoning his features, he considered the potted plant next to the sliding glass door. It was either smash the window, or stand out here like an idiot until someone spotted him and called the police.
... Well, here goes nothing.
Picking it up, he hefted the plant through the window with as much force as he could muster, trying to make more than just an unsightly hole in the glass. And while luck hadn't been on his side a moment ago when he'd tried the door, it was now, as the entire pane crumbled cheaply. Glass makers, it seemed, just weren't what they used to be in Gotham anymore.
Of course, right now, he couldn't waste his time with silly anecdotes - or sudden regrets about his decision to break and enter. He'd just smashed a window. Young had to have heard that, and an alarm was probably going off somewhere, even if it was a silent one.
Stepping gingerly over shards of broken glass despite the fact that the riding boots he was sporting would protect his feet from them, he moved into the house. There was a second of hesitation, somewhere between the foyer and the staircase, as he tried to decide where a business man, newly home from vacation would be. And then, deciding that if it were him, he'd be upstairs in bed, he headed for the stairs, only to hesitate a second time as something caught his eye. A bottle of opened brandy on a table by the stairs - if he was going to set something on fire, or threaten to, he'd need fuel.
Grabbing it, hastily, he made his way up the stairs, not bothering to be silent - that was rather difficult in riding boots anyway - and barged into the first room. And thankfully, Young was there and did not have a gun - a prospect which had occurred to him as he was halfway through the door; business men had guns, it was a fact in this city. Thank God, Young was the exception to the rule.
He was not, apparently however, the exception to the 'Calling the Police When Someone Breaks Into Your House' rule. In fact, as Crane barged in, he was setting the phone back in its cradle. Oh well. With any luck, he'd be done with this before any authorities showed up.
"Good evening, Mister Young," Crane started, finally, voice a hideous rasp, thanks to the voice changer in the mask.
"Who the hell are you?"
"I'm afraid that's not important," he answered, advancing on the desk. "What is important, however, is this."
He produced the contract Shreck had given him here, slamming it down on the desk with such force that it sent shockwaves up his arm to make his teeth hurt. Inconveniences aside, however, it looked intimidating and that's what he'd been going for.
Hard, hawk-like eyes considered Crane for a long moment, and then slowly, Young lowered them to the paper that had been so violently thrust before him. A moment passed, and then Young snorted, returning his gaze to Crane. "I'm not going to sign this."
"I think you will," Crane corrected, pulling the zippo from his pocket before brandishing it, lit, along with the brandy bottle at the business man. "If not, I torch your house."
"The cops'll be here before then."
"Mister Young, this is the Gotham City Police Department we're talking about, here. Your house will be embers before someone even responds to your breaking and entering call."
Here, Young's eyes flickered back to the paper. Maybe if he signed the paper, the psychopath would leave, and he could call his secretary and his lawyer in the morning and make sure what was written within would never come to pass. Or maybe, he could sign it and then distract the Ren Faire Reject until the cops showed up. Either way, it'd save him a ton of fire insurance paperwork, which in this town - especially where costumed weirdoes were concerned - made all the difference.
Licking his lips slowly, he reached for the pen on his desk, and second later, the paper was signed and he was pushing it in Crane's direction. "There," he started, watching with a frown as the lunatic pocketed the contract. "Happy?"
"Very. Thank you, Mister Young."
And yet despite the fact that the contract was signed, and this was the part where he was supposed to gas the business man, Crane didn't move. This was wrong. No matter how desperate he was, this was a sane man he was supposed to screw with, this was wrong. But it was too late to back out now - if he just let Young go, the guy would either talk to the police or talk to a lawyer and either way, he'd be screwed.
So, gas it was.
"Ah, one last thing."
Young frowned, etching lines on his brow. "What?"
But there was no answer, or at least no spoken one. Instead, Crane raised his hand, now free as the zippo had gone back into his pocket when the contract had. A sharp, metallic hiss, the smell of burnt ozone in the air, and then, "Enjoy your insanity."
For a second, the business man simply looked confused and then, slowly, absolute horror crept into his eyes. And as much as a small part of Crane would have enjoyed sticking around to see just what results a sane person on his wonder drug would have yielded, it was time to make his escape. Moving for the door, he managed to hear two things on his way out: the first, a scream of terror, and the second a single word.
He couldn't help but freeze just outside the door, as his mind danced madly from Jungian Psychology to Sleepy Hollow to the main character, Ichabod Crane, to his own surname. Scarecrow could be an allusion to the Shadow archetype, the Shadow archetype - or so he'd been forced to believe by his Lit Professors in college - was prevalent in Sleepy Hollow, and well ... It wasn't a hard leap from one to another, particularly if you were as sleep-deprived as he was. And if he could make the connection, could someone else? Was Young still a risk?
Maybe he could still torch the place. Maybe he could find something electrical and set that to burn, thereby protecting his own identity and making it look like an accident. Maybe, hell - it was a good idea. And he was too suddenly petrified and too tired to try and rationalize why, exactly, it would be wrong.
Making a sudden mad dash down the stairs, he stopped only long enough to pour the bottle of brandy on a lamp, light it on fire, and knock if over - not even bothering to consider the idea that he probably almost caught himself on fire in the process. Then, with resumed haste, he exited, making a bee line for his car. Throwing himself in it, he jammed the keys in the ignition, and drove like a madman out of there.
He stopped only once his heart had stopped hammering, rolling into an abandoned gas station just inside the docks district and half a town away from his home. That had been ... exhilarating? No. No, that definitely wasn't the word, or so he was trying to convince himself. That was a job. That was that. He'd been desperate, he'd done a job, and he couldn't dwell on it because ... because it wasn't done.
He still needed to call Max and let him know and get the papers to him. But he couldn't do it from his home - he'd seen enough of those idiotic 'cop shows' to know that the police could get your phone records. And maybe that's why he'd stopped here, because he'd seen the pay phone, a memorial to a fallen empire. To two fallen empires - both the gas station, and Tekmore now.
Stifling a small smile, Crane pulled himself from the car and both wordlessly and thoughtlessly, he crossed the distance to the pay phone. Shoving a handful of change into the slot, he dialed quickly and a second later, Max was on the other end of the line.
"Mister Shreck? It's Doctor Crane. I apologize if I woke you, but it's done." A pause. "... Yes ... I can bring the papers by as soon as you like, though I suggest you have them to your lawyer by mid-day tomorrow at latest to avoid suspicion. Yes. ... Thank you."
And as he headed back towards his car, a small part of him couldn't help but wonder what kind of inferno Young's home was by now.