She fumed silently as Accelerate picked through all of the jewelry on display. She can't believe that she fell for his faked cry of distress. After all, as Ecosystem would point out the moment he patrolled and found her, if Accelerate was was robbing a jewelry store and she was trying to stop him, he was going to get roughed up in the process.

But Ben had moaned in pain and clutched his face with a sharp intake of breath that sounded all too real and she never liked hurting him.

Her split second of indecision was followed by her reaching for him only to get grabbed and tossed herself. Before her poor dazed brain had registered the feint he'd had her handcuffed hand and foot, the metal engraved with holy symbols so that she couldn't break free.

"Aw, Spectre," he grinned, a silver and grey figure in the dim of the store, "No hard feelings? These are a little more important than my usual haul. Can't have you stopping me now."

She snorted, trying to get a better look at what he was pocketing while also testing the metal of the cuffs. "No hard feelings," her words were purposefully light, airy as the moonbeams and streetlamps illuminating their encounter. "I'll just have to hit harder next time. You understand right?" He laughed and turned to take a bracelet from the case right next to her.

His goggles glinted sharply in the light, a flicker-flash that distracted her with the promise of the eyes beneath. Beautiful blues, the color of safe skies, were hidden by the tinted silver lens and she wanted to greet him eye to eye, to ask if the restraints were truly necessary. She settled for the knowledge that they wouldn't hold her forever.

"Hit as hard as you like," his smile was familiar in its shape, its sound. "It only matters if you can catch me."

"Who says I can't?" The words come out more brashly than she intends and he stops, straightening long enough to stretch the question in the humid air before leaning down to her level. A garnet flashed red fire in the dark, swinging from his neck and she focused on the snatches of color in the almost monochrome moment.

Nancy knows that if she focuses on Ben she will say something she'll regret but he leans forward, the pendant brushing against her neck as he asks as quietly as he is quick...

"And what would you do if you caught me, hmm?" His breath puffs against the shell of her ear, the precious gem between them the only cool thing in the room, and it is unfair, so incredibly unjust, that a simple question can set her mind alive with possibilities that her waking mind can never indulge in.

She turns, brings them face to face. "I'd take back everything you'd stolen. Return those necklaces and rings and bracelets to this store. You can't just take what you want!" Her plea falls on deaf ears as Ben straightens up.

"You're right," his smile is cheeky, "I know of at least one precious gem I've been after for years. If only snatching it were as simple as these. Goodnight, Spectre. Tell Ecosystem hello for me." He is gone in the space between heartbeats and Nancy groans, head thumping back against the cabinet she's leaning against.

(She can't shake the feeling that he wasn't talking about jewels.)