Title: Court Martial
Author: Charlene Edwards
Disclaimer: DC owns the characters and its not at all fair!
Synopsis: This starts immediately where Nightwing 93 stops. I know where 94 is heading and I'm not happy with it so I'm reacting my own way to it. But hey, at least 93 has given me great inspiration. This is my take on how Dick would react. Hope you like it. Many thanks to Patty and Syl for their great beta work. I've been more jazzed about writing this than I have anything in a long time, so I hope you all enjoy this. Char :-)
COURT MARTIAL: Part 1:
"Get off me," he hoarsely whispered. The intense recurring spasm of panic that had started just below his sternum seemed to spread like a white hot flame ... passing through his chest, up his spine, into his face, down his arms, and down into his groin. When it reached the very tips of his toes, it finally started to subside. It had gripped him like a vice on his heart. He couldn't breathe. The choking, smothering feeling had made him dizzy, nauseous and lightheaded. He had succumbed to the fear, to the panic, to the self-loathing. He felt as if he were going crazy, or maybe he already had. When he reached this lowest point in his life, his knees failed him. Failed as he had failed. It was at this point that Tarantula had used him ... abused him and his helplessness. Yet, it was his fault. In reality, it was all his fault. Catalina wasn't to blame, not really. He was. He always would be. "Get offa me."
Dick weakly pushed her off him and rolled over into the jumbled heap of his torn and bloody costume. The panic almost overwhelmed him again as the smell of blood assailed his nostrils. Dick closed his eyes and tried to regain his composure, but the tremble in his arms gave him away. Her hands were on him ... all over him ... violating him. He deserved to be violated. Deserved ... he knew what he deserved.
"Didn't you love it baby?" she callously asked. Her feral excitement in her kill had led to fierce and fervent sex. He couldn't resist, he couldn't breathe, he was numb. His body was in shock, yet it still responded to her. "You know you did. It would've been better only if you had killed him yourself. You could revel in it. But see it's all better this way … we did it together. We stopped a horrible man together. Killing him was the only way, and it was right. He deserved to die and needed to be killed. It was the right decision. Now … he's gone and we're free. Everyone will know not to take his place or we'll take them down too. It's all over. ALL over now. We're heroes. We did what others couldn't or wouldn't do. Doesn't that make you feel hopeful and special?" Smiling she lay her head on his bare back.
"Killing ... doesn't make you ... special. Only God can create life, anyone can take it. We're not ... special ... we're sick. It's sick ... what we did ... what we did."
"We did it together," she said nibbling on his back. Her fingers traced invisible patterns on his back as she unconsciously connected the dots of the small brown moles to the battle scars. "I think I love you."
Finding a last surge of strength, Dick pushed up on his elbows and shrugged her off him. He grabbed his tattered uniform and slipped his battered body into it. The rain had stopped, but it hadn't washed him clean of his sins ... nothing could erase the darkness gripping his soul. He turned to face her, his cold blue eyes pierced her like a knife. "I hate you." Dick growled his words. "The only thing I hate more than you ... is myself."
"You sonovabitch!" Catalina Flores hissed. "I killed him for you! Because you were too weak to do it yourself!"
"I was weak ... not because I couldn't kill him but because I let you do it."
"Fine. Sit here and rot with his decaying flesh. You deserve him."
He made no move to stop her from leaving. He did deserve it. He deserved worse. He opened his communicator. Who to call? Who could he call? Barbara? No. Not anymore. She wasn't his and he had no right. Tim? No. He couldn't involve him in this ... he wasn't Robin anymore. Bruce? No. Dick couldn't face Bruce. Not now, perhaps never again. He had failed so miserably, he had no right to call himself Bruce's son. There was only one person he could call, that he could trust would do what had to be done now.
With a shaking hand, he hit the comm channel to the Watchtower. "This is Nightwing ... I need ... Superman. ... To my coordinates ... NO! ... Just Superman. Nightwing out."
Superman flew toward Bludhaven as quickly as he could. It had been mere minutes since he had gotten the call to go to Bludhaven. His eyes found Nightwing standing on a rooftop of the Haven Hotel miles away. Superman became more disturbed the closer he got to him. His uniform was torn and tattered, covered in dirt, soot, and blood. He landed before the young man, "Nightwing? What can I do?"
Nightwing stood looking at the rooftop. Slowly, he raised his head to face Superman, avoiding looking him directly in the eyes. His hoarse voice was low. "Thanks ... for coming."
Superman could tell the young man was upset. Clearly something was wrong. "What can I do to help, Nightwing?"
Nightwing pointed his left hand toward the edge of the roof, to the open door that led to the hotel's staircase. "Stairs ... in the ... stairwell."
Superman stepped slightly away from Dick and used his x-ray vision. Not believing his eyes, he slowly walked over, entered the building and looked over the railings. His jaw flexed as he saw the body of the large man formerly known as Roland Desmond six flights down near the fourth floor entrance. Blockbuster was dead. Apparently from a gun shot wound. His frown deepened as he stared at the congealed pooled blood. His eyes traveled up the cinder block wall to the darkening crimson spray stain, and the white splintered bone fragments mixed in with hair, scalp and gray brain matter splattered against the wall. His vision picked up the small details in the darkened stairwell including the obliterated bullet fragments some still lodged in part of the head of the slumped body and other fragments embedded in the wall from the powerful and obviously close shot. Over the nauseating smell of the body's seeping fluids, he detected the acrid fading scent of gunpowder and a hint … of perfume. Stepping back out onto the rain soaked roof, he asked, "Nightwing ... what happened?"
"I ... I ... killed ... him."
"WHAT?!?" Superman whirled. He was in front of the man he had known since he had been a colorfully clad boy. He lifted Nightwing's chin so that the young man looked at him. "What did you say Dick? What did you do?"
"I killed him ... I ... this is my fault. All my fault." Tears fell from Nightwing's eyes. He sat on the rooftop pulling his legs up to his chest. He pulled his mask off and rested his head on his knees.
Superman watched him and his heart ached. The boy was wrong ... confused ... Dick was no murderer. He looked behind him to the open door, to where he knew the body was, then back at Nightwing. Moving beside him, Superman sat down on the rooftop. "Why did you want me to come?"
Dick looked up, rubbed his sleeve under his nose, and looked out at the Bludhaven skyline. "I ... I couldn't call Bruce. I ... how do I tell him Clark? ... How can I disappoint him like this? I ... "
"Dick," Clark started, his hand resting on Dick's shoulder, "What happened? You don't ... kill. "
"I didn't ... I don't ... I did ... I don't know what to do. Will you ... go with me?"
"To tell Bruce?" Clark understood why Dick might want backup when facing his father about this. Still something wasn't right. Blockbuster had been shot yet Dick had no gun. Clark had conducted a peripheral vision sweep and there was no gun in the area. When the breeze slacked, he detect the quickly vanishing scent of that perfume, but no smell of gun oil or power and no gun.
"To turn myself in."
TO BE CONTINUED ...