Memorial ---***---***--- Authors Note: Sorry I am posting this now instead of the long promised next chapter of Never Say Never Again. I promise that will be out as soon as I possibly can get it done. In the meantime, this was just dying to be written, and when they come this easy, who am I to meddle?

This story takes place after the events of Devil's Eye. ---***---***---

It had been raining for three days straight. The morning after the greatest battle in recent New Gotham history had started out sunny, but the clouds had begun to roll in by the afternoon. By nightfall the storm had taken hold, and it hadn't ceased battering the already damaged city, with light sprinkles during the day, and ferocious thunder and lightning at night. Barbara Gordon didn't mind the thunder. It kept her company. It kept her from being alone.

The days were bearable. The flurry of activity in the clocktower was enough to keep her busy. Most of the big cleanup work was done, but other things like changing the security protocols and teaching the ever-curious Detective Reese about their world was a suitable distraction for her. She had even begun retooling the computer systems, not so much because they needed it, but because it was something to do.

After a day of rest, she even had put herself back into physical training. For once, she had been grateful for the lack of feeling in her legs, for she knew that they must have been wholeheartedly protesting their sudden flurry of activity during the battle.

"Showdown" was the word being thrown around in the media. A showdown between good and evil. Harley Quinn and her goonies, vs.' the warriors left by Batman to protect the city. To the collective relief of Barbara, Helena and Dinah, actual information about the protectors identities and base of operations had remained scarce. The code of secrecy had been broken- Reese knew. It would be easier to let others in now, but they would have to be as trustworthy as the good detective.

Wade had known the secret. At first, Barbara had been furious with Alfred for having the audacity to force Wade upon her, expose the secret- and make her realize the strong feelings she had. Feelings she didn't want to admit to, because she couldn't ever act on them.

But once it was done, it had all come together so easily. Wade had fit right in with life at the clocktower, accepting the unacceptable and taking it all in with the same unflappable grin. Helena was having some minor problems with his presence, but it would have worked out in the end.

What scared her was how real it had felt- how normal it all seemed when put together. Barbara Gordon and Oracle, Teacher and Crime fighter, home and lair, friends and protégé's, boyfriends- they all met for the first time, and fit together perfectly. It was safe and happy. She felt content. Contentment was a feeling she hadn't experienced in a long time.

But just as before, the happiness was gone now, shattered before her eyes. Helena still felt responsible and was for the most part trying to avoid Barbara. Barbara didn't blame her for the way things had happened, but she suspected it would be a while, if ever, before Helena forgave herself.

Barbara couldn't pin the blame on her. Yes, what if Helena hadn't told Harley about Wade? He still might have been at the tower when she had come. What if Alfred hadn't shown Wade the tower? Or if she had just gone on vacation to the Bahamas with him? There was no end to the what if's. Things where as they were, and nothing could change that now.

Gazing off into the distance, Barbara watched the ceremony. Helena and Dinah were there, as were almost fifty other family members, teachers and students. Barbara couldn't bring herself to join the main group. She couldn't face his parents. Not now. Maybe not ever.

The morning after the battle, they had found his body in a storage closet of the clocktower. Aside from the bloodstain on his shirt, he looked just as he had when she had last seen him. Reese had helped them report the death, and with so many other mortalities associated with the rioting of the night, the cause of death was hardly looked into any further. In a way, the official report was true; he was a victim of the evil of Harley Quinn. He was just more directly a casualty of hers than any of the others had been.

The ceremony came to a close, and most of the group slowly broke up and began to leave, eager to get out of the drizzle that had started up again. Helena and Dinah came towards her, Dinah's eyes moist from crying.

"It was nice" Helena said, gesturing to where Barbara's eyes were focused. "Several students spoke out about what he did for them, how he helped them.."

Barbara nodded slowly, never taking her eyes away from the site. "He was good at his job. He could make friends with anybody."

After a few more minutes, the last two people at the site, Wade's parents, finally began to retreat to their cars, his father holding tightly to his weeping mother. Helena saw this activity. "Do you want us to wait for you?" she asked.

Barbara shook her head. "No, I'll be fine. Go home, get out of the cold. I'll get back on my own."

"If your sure.." Helena lingered a moment longer, than gestured Dinah to follow her back to the car.

Taking a deep breath, Barbara directed her chair out from under the awning she had been watching from under, and set out across the lawn.

Approaching the gravesite, she slowed and came to a stop about 15 feet away from the rich oak casket.

"Hi" she said, speaking loudly so her voice would be heard from her distance away and over the din of the rain. "I wanted to say goodbye, but I couldn't face your parents. I didn't want to be just a person in the crowd."

"The truth is, Wade, until a few days ago, I really couldn't imagine a life with you.. Now I can't imagine my life without you." She smiled. "You've changed me- it's all your fault."

Taking a deep breath, she continued. "When this." she gestured to her legs "when it happened, I thought I'd be stuck forever. I taught myself not to rely on anybody- they would never stay with me like this, never look past this. I didn't want to get used to being helped, because one day there would be no one there. I would be alone. But you, you showed me that not everyone would leave, and to rely on someone could be wonderful, because they would always be there."

"But you've left me alone Wade. You aren't here to help me through this, and share things with me. But for the first time in a long time, I don't want things to go back to the way they were. I don't want to be that person who needs nobody again. I don't want to be surrounded by people I care for and who care for me, and still feel isolated. You gave me a taste of happiness that I didn't think I could still feel. And I want to experience it again, someday. And for that I will always love you. And I will miss you. "

"I came here today to tell you that. But I also wanted to show you something." Carefully, slowly, she began to rise up out of the chair. She held onto the armrest as she cautiously straightened her body up, and then let go when she was ready. After a few tentative steps, she looked up, smiled, and strode purposefully to the casket, and then walked completely around it. Stopping in front of it, she lifted her arms "Ta Dah" she said, and started grinning.

"I thought you might like to see this. I was fixing it for our trip- I wanted to surprise you with it. I didn't think I'd wind up using it to take back the clocktower."

"It's not a cure or a fix, and I can't even use it often at all- if Alfred knew I was using it now, he'd kill me" she whispered. "This doesn't change me, or who I am, and how I live my life. I know you've always seen the real me. But I wanted to let you see it with your own eyes."

She turned her gaze up at the sky, which was still letting out a soft drizzle. "See--this is for you!" She shouted towards the heavens. Raising her arms, she began to turn in a circle slowly, feeling the rain in her hair, the joy of the grass beneath her feet, and the satisfaction of controlling her own movement. A wind picked up, and she shut her eyes as it gently embraced her. Reopening her eyes, she took a few steps towards the top of the casket and set a single red rose atop the plethora of other pastel flowers adorning it. She bent down and kissed the top of the casket gently.

"Thank you" she said, backing away a step. She paused. "I love you." After a beat, she turned and slowly retreated back towards the chair. Suddenly, a roll of thunder began to moan it's long and monotonous grandeur, and after a moment a steady rain began to fall, filling the footsteps she had just made in the wet ground. Sitting back down in the chair, Barbara smiled and let her gaze linger for just another moment, and then guided the chair slowly away.