Zero Hour

By Icha

Rating: T

Summary: The first time Batman met Wonder Woman. Missing link from George Perez's Time Passage (Wonder Woman#8, post crisis).

Disclaimer: All characters belong to DC Comics. Nothing is made from this fanfiction, but the satisfaction of writing the prelude of the Batman - Wonder Woman saga. Thanks always to Athena Phoenix for the beta reading.

It was chaos in that area in Washington, D.C. Rubble and stones scattered everywhere. Angry mobs gathered with high anticipation as Gordon Godfrey's robots attacked the superheroes, causing more buildings and pillars to fall down, endangering the spectators' own lives.

Batman ducked to avoid a huge rock thrown towards him. He hated this fight. He always hated fights involving civilians. And these civilians... this time they were not innocents. On the contrary, they were strong supporters of the maniacal Godfrey, whose mission at that time was the annihilation of all superheroes, meta and non-meta.

Clenching his jaw, Batman watched Guy Gardner the Green Lantern struggle against a wolf-like robot, while at the same time trying not to hurt the bystanders. The Dark Knight then scanned the area for anything he could do. In such fights like these, his strength would not be required. But he had always been the brain of the superheroes. He should think of another way out of this chaos. He saw Dr. Fate, Martian Manhunter, the Flash, Superman, and Captain Marvel battling other similar wolf-robots. He caught a glimpse of Black Canary, Blue Beetle and Robin, who were trying to calm down the mob.

It was a truly tricky situation. The whole superhero community had been accused of being irresponsible as their actions to protect peace and justice had caused destruction of public and private facilities and loss of life. Gordon Godfrey's fingerprints were everywhere in this case. He even led the anti-superhero movements across the nation. Batman had suspected that Godfrey used a trick of mass hypnosis, but he hadn't found the way to stop it.

Batman dodged again. An array of kiosks next to him was destroyed as Captain Marvel tossed another robot towards it. The robot easily got up and attacked the wielder of the Power of Shazam; both of them soon went to another direction to finish their business. Batman grimaced. Their current location was very close to the Smithsonian Museum complex. He couldn't imagine the criticism they would receive should those giant dinosaurs and ancient sea turtles be smashed into pieces. The destruction of public facilities resulting from the fights between his friends and the robots had increased the mob's outrage. Some of them had even started to throw rocks and bottles at Black Canary and the others. Soon, the heroes would have to defend themselves, and it might trigger another fight with the mob.

"J'onn, status report," the Dark Knight contacted the Martian telepathically.

"Dr. Fate and I might be able to calm down the mob, Batman," a calm but serious voice entered Batman's mind. "But we need more time. Meanwhile, you might want to take care of the other mob that has just arrived."

Batman turned to see another group of people marching towards the war zone. He prepared himself to evade more rocks and alert Dinah and the others. To his surprise, the new mob didn't do anything harmful to the heroes. Instead, they charged the previous mob, yelling, "Leave them alone, you fool!", "Idiots! They're trying to help us!", "Will ya quit? Someone's gonna get hurt!" and other exclamations. The Caped Crusader smirked. These people were not Godfrey's army. Instead, they were here to defend the superheroes!

He walked over to the new mob, in an attempt to calm them down. They didn't need another fight here. His steps were abruptly halted, as again he had to avoid a green flash flying towards him.

Too late. Guy Gardner was down, pushing the Batman to the ground as well. It took a moment before the sarcastic Green Lantern got up from the hole he created, cursing.

"You will pay for this, tin dog!" His ring glowed green, ready to strike the wolf-robot that charged him. It was running fast, and Batman was in the middle of the robot and Green Lantern.

Suddenly, another flash of red, blue, and gold flew towards the robot, crashing it into a lamppost nearby. Batman got up, expecting the familiar voice of Superman to say, "You okay?" Instead, he saw a tall female figure standing between him, Green Lantern and the robot.

He never saw a woman of such beauty. As Bruce Wayne, he had dated many gorgeous women whose beauty would make any normal men crawl for them. But never in his life had he seen anyone like her.

She was the loveliest woman he had ever laid eyes on. Her very long raven hair swirled in the wind of Washington. She wore a costume of red bustier, blue shorts spangled with stars, and a big gold girdle with a gold lasso attached to it. Red, blue, gold – no wonder he thought of Superman. Batman frowned, realizing in a glimpse that it was the only garment the strange woman wore. She did wear red and white boots, but her thighs were exposed. Her upper body above the bustier was also uncovered, with only a pair of big silver bracelets covering her wrists. Is she running out of fabric? A bit too underdressed for fighting robots! And doesn't she feel cold wearing only a swimsuit!

He saw the woman standing proud and tall, one hand pointing at the wolf-robot. She spoke a foreign language in anger – a language that he later identified was similar to Greek. He saw her gesturing to the audience, turning her back to face him, Green Lantern, and the mob.

Switching to English, she ordered, "You are not going to hurt these people anymore!" Her bell-like voice had a charming accent. As she turned, Batman could see a golden double W insignia embedded on her bustier, glowing in the afternoon sun. He recalled seeing the insignia somewhere. Boston Globe. Time Magazine. People Magazine. National Geographic.

Wonder Woman.

Batman had read and heard of her name several times. A new heroine from Boston. No, not Boston. From a strange place with a Greek name. Themis? Themyscira?

He still stared in awe as she turned to him, asking, "Are you all right, my friend?" Her words were melodious, carrying him away. He saw a pair of sincere azure eyes, bluer than the bluest sky. He noticed that she wore a golden tiara on her head with a red star in the middle. All he could do was just to nod in reply.

"Watch out!" He pointed at the wolf-robot. It had risen again, its red electric eyes glowing dangerously.

She faced the robot again, her eyes widening in annoyance. "You still dare to get up?" Then she flew towards the robot, bombarding it with a series of punches and Greek words, until it scattered in a useless pile of metal.

It all happened in a very short time. But to the Batman, it was like watching a slow-motion movie as he focused on the strange beauty in front of him.

She finished destroying the robot, kicking the metal pile in satisfaction. "It won't hurt you again," she turned, smiling. "Now we can help the others."

"Woo-hooo-hoooo! Just a minute, woman! Who do you think you are, coming here from the middle of nowhere, and claiming your victory over my opponent!" Green Lantern spoke cynically. His ring still glowing, he couldn't accept the fact that a female stranger had destroyed the robot, instead of him.

The raven-haired woman blinked in disbelief. "I claimed none of the victories at all. My intention was merely to help you stop this madness."

"And you believe I'd just buy that? Who knows if you're not another pal of that Godfrey!" Guy Gardner still argued.

Batman raised his hand. "GL, I think the lady just wanted to help us."

"Oh yeah! And how do you know that, Detective!"

"Because she's – "

"Wonder Woman! It's really you!" Another exclamation disturbed their argument. Batman turned to see Superman landing, his eyes gleaming in excitement. The Man of Steel approached Wonder Woman, taking her hand.

"I'm Superman! I've heard a lot about you!"

"Have you?" She blushed. To the Batman, she became more enchanting still.

"Metropolis is envy of Boston! Boston has claimed that they have their own star-spangled supergirl now."

She smiled. Beautifully, Batman noticed. But before she could say anything, Superman had beckoned to her, saying that they definitely needed her help to destroy the other robots.

Thus Wonder Woman, Superman, Green Lantern, and other the metahuman finished their robotic business. The Dark Knight joined Black Canary and crew to calm down the mob. Martian Manhunter and Dr. Fate had managed to trick Gordon Godfrey into taking Dr. Fate's magic himself. As the result, the maniac flooded himself with a huge amount of magical power. Failing to endure such magic, Godfrey fell, turning into 'a gibbering mound of flesh'.

Soon the fight was over. Superman took the initiative as usual to talk to the press and crowds, apologizing for the destruction and asking them to go home. Then the Son of Krypton introduced the newbie Wonder Woman to all the superheroes there, including the Batman. The Caped Crusader just stood in silence as Superman brought Wonder Woman to him.

"And this is Batman, our World's Greatest Detective," the Man of Steel introduced them. "Batman, I believe you have met Wonder Woman. She's an Amazon."

"Please, call me Diana," she extended her hand to shake Batman's. "That is my name in Themyscira."

She smiled, and once again Batman felt like he was drifting away. Suddenly, he realized how beautiful the day was, how blue the sky was, how comfortable the afternoon sunlight that fell on his face was.

He didn't say anything, just nodded. He didn't even thank her for her help. He never usually said those things anyway. But this time, it was not his ignorance that made him silent. Instead, he was enjoying the warm smile that reached to her azure eyes. A loving smile, freely given by only very few people. So engrossed in the sensation, he forgot to speak.

He finally shook hands with her, and another flush of sensation flew to his system. It felt like touching divine energy. Like a Goddess – if there was any, as he didn't believe in deities. A mixed feeling of tranquility and passion charged him, as if he had submerged into a pool of warm water. He could smell the mixture of sweat, lavender, and lily of the valley emanating from Diana, so intense that he couldn't stand it.

He nodded again, withdrawing his hand hastily, managing to mutter, "...nice to meet you."

Diana still smiled, as if not caring for his attitude (or lack thereof). Then Superman beckoned to her again, resuming the introductions.

Later, Batman only dimly remembered the events. His main recollection was of the vivid motion picture of the poised Diana who walked, talked, and smiled with his friends. He didn't remember who said what. He only recalled the gentle but sure steps of the Amazon. Her sweet body fragrance. Her long raven hair blown by the wind. Her eyes, so beautiful and sincere, he could melt right away upon gazing at them.

He recalled that Superman had offered Wonder Woman membership in the newly reformed Justice League, and that she had politely rejected the offer. He didn't know why the heroine had refused such an offer to join the A-class superhero group. He shouldn't care. After all, it was her own business, her own decision.

But he cared. He wouldn't be able to see the Amazon on a regular basis. Somehow, the mere lack of possibility hurt him. How strange.

A rustling noise crackled from his Batlink. He heard the voice of Alfred Pennyworth.

"Master Bruce, I'm so sorry to interrupt you, but the Scarecrow had just escaped from Arkham Asylum. Commissioner Gordon –"

"I'm on my way, Alfred."

The Dark Knight signaled Robin, beckoning him to enter the hovering Batwing. As both Gotham heroes fired their grapple guns and lifted themselves into the jet, Batman couldn't resist the temptation to glance at Diana. The fair Amazon was encircled by the Flash, Blue Beetle, and Martian Manhunter. She talked to them in excitement, her eyes glowing brightly. Standing right next to her was Superman, wearing the expression of a high school kid in love.

Who could blame the Man of Steel, anyway? She was just like a Goddess sent from Heaven. And I thought that goddesses don't exist.

Batman shook the thought away, pushing it to the darkest corner of his mind. No time for daydreaming – Gotham needed him.

He secured his seat belt, reached for the steering wheel, and flew his Batwing. He didn't respond to Robin who was bubbling in enthusiasm, talking about Wonder Woman. He just leaned on his seat, navigating the Batwing to Gotham.

Then he saw a slender figure flying past him towards Boston. Red, blue, gold. Raven hair. It was her. Diana of Themyscira.

Suddenly Bruce felt a strange feeling in his stomach.

He realized that he was going to miss her.


Author's note:

The scene of Gordon Godfrey versus the superheroes indeed appeared in WW#8 (post-crisis issue). There was a picture of WW fighting the wolf-robot, with Guy Gardner in the background. Also, you would find a picture of Batman, Robin, Superman and other heroes talking to WW after the fight. So, this old issue really inspired me to write about the first moments of Bats and WW. Afterwards, they met again during the War of the Gods, when Bats helped restoring Wondy's name. Personally, I like this version much better than the Matt Wagner Trinity version, as WW in Trinity was a pretty much dominatrix heroine, so I dislike that version.