Disclaimer : I don't own these characters, I am not making any money out of this and copyright infringement is not intended.
Author's note: This story starts just after Diana walks away from Batman, from the episode This Little Piggy, assuming that she is still clueless about everything that has just happened to her and what he did to help her.
The Bat, the Cat and the Headless Gargoyle
She walked away from Batman with this strange and funny urge to hum a certain tune that kept repeating its melody over and over in her mind like an old, stubborn, broken record. So she hummed this persistent melody as she slowly strolled away with a sure feeling that his eyes were on her for she could practically feel two points burning her skin. With renewed spirit, she gave her hips a determined sway, drawing the emphasis on her behind as she sauntered the hallway. Knowing that she would disappear from his view a few feet more, she made another obvious move by combing her raven tresses with her right hand, gathering them over her right shoulder, exposing the smooth skin of her back. But still, there were no footsteps to be heard following her. Last resort as the bend was a few steps away now, she swayed even more, as if she was not obvious enough.
She turned abruptly, too abruptly that she almost lost her balance. Strong arms supported her and saved her from the fall.
Wrong man, she thought. "I'm okay, Kal," she said instead, hiding her embarrassment. "Why?"
"I thought for a while there that you…hurt your…uhm, behind," Superman noted embarrassingly, in more of a Clark Kent way. "You were walking…funny."
Funny? She could almost feel the color creeping up her cheeks. "I'm okay…really," she smiled.
"I just wanted to make sure you were okay," he sounded concerned. "Batman said you have been through a lot, though he would not say much about it."
Why was it so big a deal anyway? What ever in Hera's name happened?
"Though…to be sure, would you like me to take a look at your butt?"
If he was not Superman, she would have taken that as an affront to her femininity. Instead she just smiled and cast him a knowing look about what he just said.
He realized his mistake I just said 'butt' to Diana "I mean…look inside…" Clark Kent was taking over.
Her eyebrows rose higher. "Look inside where?"
"Inside your…uhm…" he was trying to find the right words to say in a totally embarrassing situation. He would never in his life, try and do what he was suddenly so defensive about.
"You mean, perform x-ray vision?"
"Yes, that's it." He laughed nervously. "Sorry…the words came out wrong the first time."
It was her turn to smile. "It's okay. And I am okay, really."
"Well…the good thing is that you are fine." He patted her softly on the shoulder, like she was one of the boys, as if to reassure her that he did not mean any of the blunders he was saying earlier.
Superman walked away and she stared at the gold S insignia on his cape. She sighed and shook her head. Superheroes, mostly the male ones, can sometimes be so dense.
Suddenly very tired, she made her way to her quarters, skipping dinner, feeling full as if she ate enough food to last her an entire week. After a soothing bath, she donned her pajamas and got ready for bed. As she sat by the corner of the standard issue, as GL would say, mattress, there was a rumble deep in her stomach. Then, she let out this long, earth shattering burp.
Totally shocked and embarrassed, even if she was by herself, she covered her mouth as another one tore itself from within her. Great Hera! she felt like she consumed the watchtower's weekly food ration.
Suddenly curious about what really happened to her, and afraid that Superman might be rapping on her door any minute now about what his super hearing just picked up coming from her room, she donned her costume in record breaking time and headed for the only person that knew.
Just as sure as the sun would rise in the east, and that dozens of crime will be committed in Gotham that night, he was there as she recognized the familiar brooding figure cloaked in darkness, the same place she could recall before everything faded, the place where they were having the talk.
"You should be resting," he commented in the dark, his back to her.
She slowly approached him. "I can't rest…you know I can't." Her voice was a soft whisper in the night. "Not until…"
"I already told you the reasons why."
"Oh…" That was not what she wanted to ask him, but now that he brought it up, this was a good time as any. But then, an alarmed look on her face registered, as a hand placed itself on her suddenly noisy tummy, as if to appease it. For a few, frightening seconds, she thought she was going to burp in front of him.
He finally faced her, taking in her expression and she immediately withdrew her hand from her stomach.
"Diana…" his voice softening a little as he probably misinterpreted her reaction as one of hurt than embarrassment from an upset stomach.
"You only told me…" She sat on the same ledge and looked below distancing herself to prevent him from hearing the rumbling noises from within her, silently calling out to her deities, praying. After a while, she was thankful that the uncomfortable sensation had passed. The wind blew her hair and she tucked it in her ear before looking at him. "I am not yet convinced."
She straightened up and prepared to move close to him. But before she could make a step, her keen sense heard a soft footfall nearby. A slender figure clad in black emerged from the dark.
"Am I interrupting…something," Catwoman purred, the emphasis on the last word. She approached them, her very sensual movements moved close to Batman, too close.
And he does not seem to mind a bit, Diana's suddenly jealous eyes noticed. Catwoman, on the other hand, swept her gaze from the red boots to the blue eyes.
"Princess…" Batman said. The way he said it meant that he had other business to attend to and that she'd better get going.
So it's Princess again huh? You want princess, I'm going to give you a princess. "Oh…where are my manners," she said. "I am Diana, Princess of the Amazons. You must be Catwoman, obviously."
The annoyed look on the other woman's face, and the matching glare, she noted, made the scene funnier than awkward to her. She was still jealous of course, but the image of a woman dressed as a cat rubbing her body all over a man dressed up as a bat was, she had to admit, amusing. If the other woman was to use him as a scratching pole anytime now, she would not be surprised.
"Ahhh…royalty, that explains why," the sensually deep voice remarked. Then to Batman's ears only, with lips a breath away from his face, with a whisper that she was meant to hear. "…why she's so stuck up. Imagine a kingdom without a king."
She needed a quick retort. "Oh…there is a lot to imagine," she remarked with a naughty gleam in her eyes.
"My, my!" Catwoman was surprised. "I never thought Miss Perfect here had it in her. You've been spending too much time with mortals I see…their morals are starting to rub off on you."
She had Flash to thank for that. "Not like the way you are rubbing right now," she whispered and she could see Batman smirking. He had not said a word in a while, as if he was scoring. Another point for the royal.
"She's got a sharp tongue, too. Wonder what your boyfriend Superboyscout will say to that?" Catwoman alleged as she disentangled herself from Batman and walked around her, as if sizing her opponent.
She wanted to settle that argument that Superman was not her boyfriend but when she looked at Batman, the smirk all gone, she allowed herself the luxury. "He hasn't been complaining."
Selina Kyle turned her attention back to the suddenly tense Batman. "Is she always like this? I always thought princesses were little obedient girls in fancy dresses waiting in line to be queen." The venomous stare was back at her again.
She knew where her advantages were and it was about time she used them. She put her weight on her right leg, displaying the curve of her hip, her shapely behind in view. Then she arched her back, emphasizing the perfect form of her generous breasts. "I may be sometimes obedient…" She looked at the other from head to foot. "But I'm definitely not little."
It was not envy, nor jealousy but defeat at the war of words, and cup size, that made Catwoman finally ignore her and look up at Batman. "Darling…you said eleven. If I knew you had company…I would have come later."
So he arranged a meeting with that…cat! And it was here, at their place, their…gargoyle. How could he? She felt like being hit in the gut.
He said something to Catwoman then addressed her. "Princess…"
"Yes, I know," she remarked. "I should be leaving." She turned on her heels.
But before she flew, she added icily. "Sorry if I interfered with your plans. I just came by to find out…what happened to me during the…I'm still trying to piece up my memory. I still can't remember."
"That was what you were asking about?" he said, in an even voice that belied his surprise.
"Yes…why?" She raised a perfectly arched eyebrow and asked innocently. "Is there something else to talk about?"
"No, nothing more." If he was disappointed, she did not know.
Another punch in the gut. She ignored the feeling. "It was interesting to finally meet you," she said to the other woman.
"Likewise," the bored villainess replied while examining the sharp points of her gloved hand rather than looking at her.
She turned to him. "Goodbye."
Before she flew away, she wanted to smash another gargoyle as it somewhat laughed at her, reminding her of the failure, the humiliation she felt. But a hostile display like that would only make matters worse. With a heavy heart she flew away from the dreaded scene, as fast as she could.
Then she felt a cold prick in her cheek, as her form sliced through the wind of the night. She put a palm in her face and realized that tears were streaming down from her eyes. She was crying.
"Are you okay?" A figure flew beside her.
She wiped the remaining tears away. "Kal!" she feigned surprised. "I'm okay." How many times had she said that to him this day?
Her friend's brows narrowed. "Are you sure? You look like you've been…crying."
Uh, oh. "Actually, I think I was…I think I got something in my eye." There, that was not a lie.
"Let me see…" Superman smiled remembering the scene they had earlier. He stopped her in mid-air and inspected her eyes close. She realized he was giving her an eye check up via x-ray vision. "No…nothing there. The tears must've removed it."
She blinked a few times. "I think so too." They resumed flying casually.
"So where did you go?" Superman asked nonchalantly.
"I could not sleep," she sighed. "I was trying to remember what happened by going to the place I had last memory of."
"Did it work?"
He smiled at her ruefully. "Don't worry. You'll find out sooner or later. For now," he took her hand. "It's time to head back to the watchtower. If I have to lock you up to get you to rest, I will," he joked.
They returned in a short while and as promised, he accompanied her to her room, thanking her gods that he did not ask anymore questions that she had to answer truthfully. She was not up for any more talk, the verbal sparring with Catwoman was enough sparring for the night. And it felt as exhausting as a real battle, she had to admit.
She decided to shower again, as if the water would cleanse away the tightening in her chest, the shame. How many times had she acted like that towards Batman, as if begging for his attention? She even went as far as making the first move by kissing him. Of course, she had the ultimate excuse. It was a strategy to keep the enemies off their trail.
He did not mention any of it afterwards, nor did he pursue a more than colleagues relationship with her. That should have been a sign.
But no, she just had to try again. She had to blame the stubbornness she inherited from her mother. When they were turned into eight year olds, she became bolder. The kid inside was more carefree about acting out her emotions by batting her eyelashes at him, following him around, even if he was trying his best to avoid her. And when they were turned back into adults, he dismissed her.
Did she give up? No, try a third time.
Try the subtle approach. Talk him out of his feelings once and for all. But of course, count on the gods to spoil her private moment by sending no less than an old witch with a grudge against mommy to ruin her night of nights.
What in Hera's name am I doing?
She looked at her naked form in the mist stained mirror, and stood proudly. She was an Amazon, a race that did not need men for as long as she could remember. She was royalty. She was the world's strongest female, probably the second strongest Meta, next to Superman. She was ageless. She was beauty personified. Men wanted to possess her, women wanted to be her.
Nothing like a dose of vanity could cure a broken heart.
And whatever in Gaea's name gave her the idea that she would have a future with a mortal? She shook her head, knowing all along the answer.
A love that she could only give to one man but this one man does not want.
The previous night, she remembered tossing her heritage aside, swallowing her pride and bravely opened up to him. He dumped her. And tonight, even though she was not even yet opening her emotions to him, he still dumped her. The next time, she probably has not spoken a word yet and he's already dumping her, worse, she might get a memo of him dumping her!
You don't want it, fine!
She dressed and lay on the bed, staring vacantly at the ceiling. Then she made a resolve, as if making an agreement with herself.
I may still love you, Batman, Bruce Wayne, everything about you. But you made it clear, in so many ways that I failed to notice, did not want to notice, that you never felt the same. So this I promise myself…no more childish thoughts, no more stealing glances, no more sketching your face during boring meetings, no more pretending that you will ever return my feelings.
I would not, ever, let myself be a fool again.
I am Diana of Themyscira, Princess of the Amazons.
And tomorrow is a new day.
She sighed, feeling a part of her come to terms with herself. As she turned to switch off the lights, she whispered for herself to hear.
"Goodbye Bruce. Goodbye Batman."
She smiled as she turned and hugged a pillow. He'd better learn to be extra friendly with Superman or GL. She was not going to volunteer flying him from now on.
To be continued…