Disclaimer: This may shock you, but I do not own the DC characters. (I know, I know, it'll take some getting over) I hesitate to even say the story belongs to me, because so much of the plot is lifted from DC history. But come on DC/WB, don't steal my idea. You know it's wrong.
/Alright kids, I first started piecing this story together back when there were rumors for a Batman vs Superman movie floating around (still are). Anyway, I've always liked the idea, but after reading a script review for Wolfgang Peterson's Batman vs. Superman and several fan scripts, I found they were consistently lacking. So, after an absurd amount of plotting, I decided to take things into my own semi-capable hands, and since I have absolutely no script writing familiarity, I'm writing it out in good ol' story format. Kind of like a novelization for a movie that doesn't exist and stands no chance of ever existing, if that makes any sense. I know that's not the way a person should write, but meh.
Anyway, if this story ever becomes anything, maybe I'll write more of an introduction, but I think it's really pompous to write all the whys and hows for a piece of fan fiction. Anyway, hope ya like it.-Roll/
Chapter 1: ...Because it has to start somewhere.
It was a dark, cold and oddly calm night for a city like Gotham. Thick autumn clouds and smog hung in the sky, concealing the stars under a blanket of grey from the already glimmering city. It seemed so peaceful; thousands of twinkling lamps and lights futilely attempting to brighten the permanently grim landscape, an ocean of steel and glass as far as the eye could see. The waters were still, the sky was empty, and there was not a single siren or alarm ringing throughout the twisting labyrinth of streets and sky scrapers. It was unsettling. Peace was a forgotten concept.
A trio of sailors sat atop crates on a rickety boat that swayed back and forth atop the water in one of Gotham's dilapidated harbors. Two played cards while one nervously read a newspaper, with a big bold headline reading 'MONSTER TERRORIZES GOTHAM UNDERWORLD' and a shot of a blurry figure atop one of the city's rooftops that was just as likely a chimney as it was the mythical Batman.
"Got any Jokers?" the small thug asked his larger counterpart, a bemused frown etched on his overly-serious face. The third thug only looked to the sky worriedly, thinking he'd heard something.
"Go Fish." The large thug answered with an arrogant, unjustifiably self-assured grin.
"I'm tired of this stupid kids' game." The smaller thug grunted, throwing his cards down onto the make-shift table. Leaning back, his arms crossed in a huff, he looked over to the thug intently reading the newspaper. "Again with those stupid 'Bat' stories, Jack?" He called to the nervous thug, who jumped in fright at the sound of the man's voice. "You know they're just city hall propaganda, right?"
"They're not stupid, and he's real!" The nervous thug exclaimed as soon as he eased his nerves. "Jonny Gobs told me The Bat came after him one night in an alley after he been making his rounds! He's got this lady's purse right, and he says the Bat came down and ripped him to shreds! Nearly tore his freakin' arm off!"
"Please, Gobs is a junkie off his ass!" The small thug quipped, shaking his head and getting a chuckle from the largest thug. "Probably just hallucinated the whole thing tripping on his way down..."
"Still..." Jack backed down slightly, a man lacking in confidence. "Its not just Jonny...everybody's talkin'...everybody's scared."
"What are you lameass clowns babbling about?" A condescending, confident voice called to the thugs, who snapped to attention when they saw the voice's owner standing in the door frame.
It was a man of average height and a lean build, covered from head to toe in a warrior's armor of red, yellow and grey. He seemed to be his own walking arsenal: protected by kevlar at every inch, and a red scope over his right eye to ensure his already perfect aim wouldn't fail. A set of magnums grafted to his wrists were his favourite and most obvious weapons, but littered all along his body were various other arms grafted to his outfit. Emblazoned on his chest was a red and white cross-hair, if only to taunt those who faced him down, however brief it may be.
"H-Hey Floyd..." The smaller thug greeted somewhat uneasily, though not nearly as skittish as Jack.
"That's Deadshot..." The costumed man hissed as he passed the thug, stopping at the edge of the boat and staring out at the harbor.
"Right, sorry..." The smallest thug nodded apologetically, nearly groveling. The largest thug chuckled a bit, but quickly fell dead serious under Deadshot's icy glare.
"Say that name again and I'll spare the Bat the trouble and slit your measly throat myself." He warned as he stepped calmly to the edge of the boat, grabbing the railing in his hands and staring at the moon warily. "We can't afford mistakes like that. He's flying tonight..."
The small pack took a brief moment to gather their collective jaws off from the floor.
"Ha! Told ya he was real!" The nervous thug exclaimed proudly, a goofy grin on his face that drew a look of irritation from the smallest thug as he punched him happily in the arm.
"You've met him?" The largest thug asked, dumfounded and officially converted.
"Me and The Bat have had ourselves a couple of tussles, yeah." Deadshot turned, an obvious sneer resonating under his mask. "Trust me when I tell you the stories are true..." The man was all at once very grim, closing in on the trio. "He'll rip you to shreds and you won't even see him do it. Its like he's not even there when's he's coming after you. You just see flashes of black in the night as you start to panic. You shoot, but there's nothing there but smoke and night. Don't let yourself be tricked, though; he is the night, and vengeance, all that other stuff that's there to keep us in line. He's that thing that's been in the back of your head since you were a kid that makes you fear for your life when the lights go out and things go bump." Deadshot loomed over them now, his intense breath heavy on their faces as they cowered. "He's like the touch of God, and not that benevolent grandfather in the sky we like to think is watching over us, smiling. He's that old testament stuff we're supposed to bow to, that one that'll damn you to hell for any sin without thinking twice and watch you burn. So you better hope that he's not around when you're doing the things he says you shouldn't..."
They were trembling beneath him now, and after another intense second, he let out a very amused guffaw as he tore the newspaper from the nervous thug's hands. "You guys actually believe in this crap?" He chortled, tossing the tabloid aside. "You may as well believe in freakin' aliens coming to earth and gods sitting atop Mount Olympus."
There was a sudden clink as something landed on the steel floor underneath them. The quartet of criminals looked down to find a small, spherical steel orb between them. Suddenly, it exploded in an eruption of the thickest smoke imaginable, wrapping the boat upon which they stood in a cloud of blinding fog. Through the scope over his eye, Deadshot watched in a panic as something descended around the largest thug's neck and snatched him up into the night sky. When the smallest thug made a run for it, something caught his legs and pulled him back deeper into the smoke, screaming and clawing at the floor hopelessly. Deadshot disappeared into the ship, leaving only Jack to glance around frantically for the darkness in the smoke he'd been warned about.
As the fog cleared, the nervous, terrified thug saw his two comrades, hanging with cuffed hands from a crane, bruised, beaten and unconscious. He wobbled backwards, bottom lip trembling as a dark figure emerged behind the two carcasses. He reached desperately for his gun with a shaky hand, but the dark figure needed only to whip his arm out from under his all-encompassing mass of black to have something thrash through the air and knock the gun away, sending it down deep forever into the river. The thug stumbled again and fell to the floor, quivering in a fit of hysteria as the dark figure leaped from its pedestal and landed within a foot of the helpless thug.
The moonlight exposed it as something just as menacing as any monster or demon. He was a vision of black: a cape cascading over his body and to the floor like the cloak of Death itself. Under it were the occasional glimmerings of a silver emblem of a bat on his chest and a thick grey belt crossing over his waist, like a high-tech championship. The momentary flapping of his cape in the wind revealed a rock hard, rippling musculature under his black armor, which covered every inch of his body. His head betrayed his awe-inspiring demeanor to reveal that he was indeed a man, with a mask obscuring most of his face but leaving his jaw and piercing blue eyes for all to see, though they did nothing to soften this dark knight's paralyzing scowl.
"I take it you've heard of me..." The Bat hissed coldly, looming over the meek Jack, who screamed in horror as the darkness consumed him.
Deadshot twisted his neck sideways as a blood-curling scream echoed down through the hall of the ship, followed by the subtle but obvious ring of boots slowly marching towards him. With a shake of his head, he dismissed it, tearing a crate open and shoveling dull green jewels into a burlap sack. He wouldn't screw this one up. Not this time. Too much at stake.
As the thunk of the boots grew faster and faster, he whipped himself backwards, and found himself gazing into empty darkness. Not to be fooled, he turned on the scope over his eye, and the darkness was replaced by bright, glowing red. He scrutinized the large, storage bay warily, loading the guns on his wrists in case of attack, and caught the flapping of a cape. Deadshot immediately rolled and started firing continuously, watching carefully as the shadow moved and dodged as it ran along the wall, disappearing behind crates just as Deadshot fired his last round.
Pressing at a few buttons on his wrist, Deadshot tiptoed carefully around the wall of crates, guns armed and ready. Pressing himself against the one side of the crates, he whipped himself around the corner, guns pointed and found...
Darkness there, and nothing more.
He tensed further, looking all around him in confusion and panic. Unfortunately, he never bothered to look above, and he didn't even notice as something descended from the ceiling behind him. However, he did recognize the air getting heavier and that familiar clunk of boots.
Deadshot whipped himself around and fired a shot, but an arm reached out and shoved the gun off course as another grabbed him by the throat and threw him harshly down through the wall of crates. The arm effortlessly pulled him back to his feet from the debris as he was still recovering, and tossed him through a second tower of crates. As Deadshot rolled off the impact and onto his feet, he tried yet again to fire a shot, but a thin black projectile sliced through the air and into his weapon, destroying it in an explosion of sparks.
He stumbled backwards as his weapon fell to the floor and the dark figure sprinted towards him. Before a second had passed, the figure was upon him, shoving him up into the wall with one arm and quickly disarming him completely with the other.
"Jesus!" Deadshot exclaimed as he felt himself lifted off the ground, finally staring down the dark monster face to face.
"No..." The monster muttered, a deep, menacing glower on his face as he held the man with both hands at the collar. "Batman."
The Batman smacked him to the floor, pacing slowly around him, impossibly horrific
"What is it this time, Floyd?" It began quietly "Horse? Coke? Must be one hell of a shipment for somebody to give you all these toys to play with..."
"W-What?" Deadshot stammered, wondering how this beast knew of him. "How do you...?"
"How do I know?" The black monster hissed, leaning into within an inch of Floyd's face. He grabbed him by the collar and easily heaved him onto his feet and into a wall. "I've been watching you. You may like to think you do a clean job but I've got so much dirt on you it sickens me. You're sloppy Floyd, and it astounds me to think that someone would have actually expected you to be able to do anything on your own."
"They didn't..." Deadshot sneered in spite of himself, which elicited a restrained look of surprise from The Bat, who let Deadshot back down onto his feet.
Something hummed quietly as it flew through the air. Deadshot watched as The Bat turned around just in time to dodge the projectile: a foot-and-a half long, three pointed sai. Floyd screamed and shut his eyes as the sai raced towards his head. After a second of nothing, he opened his eyes and found that the Bat had caught the weapon just before the longest point had pierced his head.
"You're lucky." The Bat muttered, tossing the weapon aside and letting a terrified and relieved Deadshot sag into the wall for a moment before giving him a harsh backhand. Deadshot crumpled to the floor, unconscious. "But not that lucky..."
The Bat paced the room carefully, scanning it for intruders in the shadows. They wouldn't be able to hide for long before he'd find them. As his namesake suggested, he was at home in black obscurity. The sanctity of darkness was not their's to be had.
A shrill battle cry rang out from the corner, and he turned to face a figure tumbling in his direction. She stopped within a few feet of him, assuming an expert battle stance, a sai in each hand. She seemed very young, and far too graceful and beautiful to be a threat. Her black hair was tied into a bun, and her skin was a creamy tan colour, probably Chinese, although the veil masking the bottom half of her face made it harder to tell. She was thin, but hardly petite. She was fit: a hard, toned, yet still feminine body obvious despite her flowing, yet form-fitting battle gown. The Bat simply stood there for a moment, watching her, and if he was impressed, he didn't show it.
She charged in much quicker than he'd of guessed she was able and delivered a perfectly executed kick to his gut and followed with a knee to his face that sent him stumbling backwards. Finally, she jumped up and crescent kicked him across the face, sending him sprawling into more crates. She stood and waited for him to get up. She wasn't looking for the instant gratification of a kill. She was looking to truly best this beast that had taken over the night and put fear back into the hearts of the jaded and cynical. As he recovered back into his daunting vertical base, seemingly unfazed, he was willing to admit he'd underestimated her. He wouldn't let it happen again.
She dashed in once more, stabbing at his face with one of her sais, but he dodged easily by doing nothing more than leaning back. She followed suit, constantly slicing at air that he'd occupied less than a millisecond ago as he dodged each of her lightning quick strikes with an inhuman fluidity. His cape seemed almost stuck to his body, swirling with him perfectly as he moved, arms hidden at his sides under it as he made no effort to hit her back. Irritated at his demeaning choice of play, she struck him hard with the butt of her weapon in the windpipe, kicked him in the knee to bring him down, and gave a him a blunt roundhouse across his face for his efforts. If he wasn't going to attack her, she'd make him.
The Bat made no sound as he fell to the ground, which seemed odd to the girl. He didn't groan in pain, or even indulge in a grunt or growl, simply got back to his feet and stared at her as though the pain hadn't even mattered to him. It only served to cheapen her further, and her rage was starting to get the better of her. She tried to lay into him again but this time he caught her arm and twisted it with authority, jerking her wrist and disarming her of one of her sais. Spinning under her arm once more to face her, a fist swung upwards out from the mass of darkness, knocking her straight in the jaw, off her feet and onto her back. She cringed in pain at first, but smiled none the less as she saw the monstrous Bat looming over her indifferently, beckoning her to get up and try again. This is what she'd wanted.
She shot up to her feet and charged forward, swiping at him with her one sai, which he somewhat surprisingly blocked instead of dodged. He countered with a swinging backhand, which missed, but recovered in time to catch her foot before it smashed into his face. Twisting the ankle, he swept the only leg that kept her standing out from under her. She spun in the air and wheel kicked him across the face, rolling back to her feet upon landing on the floor.
She dove at him with a flying side kick, but he side-stepped it and tried to clip her with a hook kick. She ducked, and swung her weight backward, landing on her back as she snap-kicked him harshly on the top of his head. He stumbled backwards as she kicked back up and onto her feet, contorting herself through the air to deliver a flying twisting roundhouse across his face that sent him sprawling. Again, he made no sound.
She hopped up onto a crate and dove at him, trying to finish him off with one clean axe-kick. He caught her in the air by her leg and abdomen, then slammed her down hard onto her back. He quickly applied a leg lock, and she howled loudly as he bent her unnaturally. Out of desperation, she continuously kicked him as hard as she could with her free leg, and he eventually let go.
She hobbled to her feet once she was free of him, and he slowly returned to that looming position she had come to loath as he waited for her. She swung at him sloppily, and he blocked it easily, slipping the lengths of his arms on opposite ends of her body: her lower back and the upper half of her chest. He jerked his arms in a clockwise movement, both pressing against her, and he pulled her into the air and flipped her backwards onto her face. Stunned, he cuffed her in a split second before she even had the chance to get her head together enough to struggle. Well, that was it, she had thought. She lost. She cursed her arrogance, thinking the Bat would simply be another head on her wall. At least she'd die with honor, being fairly bested.
The Bat looked down at her, content in victory if only for a moment. He almost instantly turned grim again, stalking menacingly around her. "You're going to jail..." He muttered plainly, as though it were simple fact.
"I'm afraid this will not be your night..." A thick, smooth voice called out from the shadows near the Bat. A giant hand reached out from the darkness and grabbed him by the throat, easily heaving him into the air.
The Bat looked down at the beast of a man who held him like a child. He was gargantuan, close to seven feet tall and almost as wide. Draped in tight black clothing which left most of his upper half exposed and a black mask over his face that resembled that of a luchadore or perhaps a sadist, he had a body that couldn't possibly be natural: a mess of rippling muscle, with biceps bigger than most heads. He seemed inhuman, perhaps a caricature of someone who would effortlessly become Mr Universe. Most grotesquely of all though were the tubes running from his chest, down his limbs, and even into the back of his skull, pumping only God knew what. The beast tossed The Bat aside and through a wall of crates as though he were nothing but a ragdoll.
As the Bat slowly made his way to his feet, in the utmost pain yet unwilling to acknowledge it, the monster of a man closed in on him. The Bat swung to hit the man, but instead received a punch in his chest that was akin to getting hit by a train. He was sent hurtling backwards off his feet from the impact, hitting the floor hard a good ten feet or so away, yet still he made no sound, though he was not quick to his feet either.
The man-beast made for another step towards the Bat, like a lion pawing his captured prey, but the distinct ringing of police sirens made him stop in his tracks. Disappointed, the man made his way over to the girl and easily snapped the chain of her hand-cuffs. She seemed very irritated with his behavior, muttering something in Chinese about dishonor, but he just ignored her and made his way to Deadshot, heaving the man and his bag onto his shoulder.
"Some other time." The man said, saluting the Bat, who was still on the floor in the wooden debris of the crates, futilely trying to shake the cobwebs out from his head in time to re-capture the trio. As soon as he was fully aware, he looked around, but they were already gone, and the sounds of the sirens were getting louder by the second. The police would be here soon.
With a heavy sigh, he sat up from his bed of splinters and wreckage, knowing he would not soon have time to investigate the scene further or the strength to pursue his prey. He declared the night a failure and stood to his feet, when he noticed a minuscule shard of the jewel Floyd had taken. He picked it up off the floor and looked at it. It was a faded green colour, not at all attractive or distinguished in the dim light. Simple jade, he thought to himself, but that hardly seemed valuable enough to warrant such elaborate smuggling and protection from a trio the caliber of which he had faced, whose efforts he figured cost more than the sack's worth they had taken. There was something about this that required further probing. He took a mental photograph of the entire scene, dropped the sliver into a pouch on his belt, and disappeared into the night without so much as a trace when the police came barging in.
In the distance though, someone had seen him. Perched on a rooftop, she'd been watching him intently through her telescope, fascinated the whole time by the way he moved with the shadows even better than herself, which she had thought to be impossible. He was subtle, careful, expert, but above all aware. She had worried for a moment, however brief, that he'd spot her, but she shook the notion from her head. It wasn't him, anyway. The way he conducted and maneuvered so masterfully, meticulously planning and cogitating every step and second, had cast a heavy cloud of doubt over her. Carnage and holocaust couldn't possibly be that rational. When she saw him hobble out of the boat and into the shadows, hiding from the police, she was certain. He had been hurt. He was just flesh and bone, nothing more than a man, and for a second, she'd thought that this could actually be him.
Almost embarrassed for having wasted her time on this supposed Batman, she took off across the rooftops and into the night sky like a watchful eagle over a concrete forest. She'd find the man they'd warned her about, before it happened, before everything came down, before he ended it. She'd find him, sooner or later. He had to be stopped, and she promised she'd be the one to do it. She wouldn't fail.