A/N: I don't own any members of the Justice League. They belong to Cartoon Network, Marvel, and DC Comics. I do, however, own Taipana.
Chapter 1: Intervention
Batman was crouched on a rooftop in a heavy snowfall. It was Christmas Eve and he was on reconnaissance work. The wind whistled fiercely under his cape as he carefully scanned the area below him. Gotham City, his home and domain. No one took better care this place than he did – no one. He'd been a little preoccupied lately, what with staying with the League and going unlimited. Then there was Hawkgirl's reluctant return and the trip through time. He never expected to see himself as an old – no, ancient man, still doing the "vigilante" game. Turns out, he was the Yoda of Batman's with a soft spot for dogs. Strange, he always thought himself as a cat person, given his past.
He'd been on that roof for hours and not one bit of trouble had occurred. Someone was taking care of business while he was off in space taking care of the "kids." Maybe it was Dick or Barbara, but that really didn't make much sense. Then again, maybe it was them and they did it to do what he couldn't. It had been a while since he talked to either of them, not since Jason and Tim died. The intervention had been ugly and after a few more months as a lone bat, he joined the League.
"Batman," J'ohn called through his earpiece, bringing Batman out of his thoughts. "Flash and Green Arrow need some assistance on their mission in Kyrgyzstan. Care to join them?" It was more of an order than a question, but it wasn't like he had a choice in the matter.
"I'll be along shortly," Batman replied. J'ohn said his good-byes and Batman sighed heavily. "What a waste of time this was," he muttered.
He had decided to take some time out of his busy schedule to come back and take care of some other business. One of his informants had a tip about a supposed robbery to take place in the city. Whether or not it would happen or not didn't matter. What mattered was that he was there to see it through, true or not. The sight of two men breaking into a department store below interrupted his thoughts though.
"Now you show up," he muttered in annoyance.
Pulling out his grapnel, he shot a line across the road to the other roof. He quickly made his way across to the roof door and inside. By this point, the robbers would already be breaking glass and tripping the silent alarm. But, when Batman got to show room, the robbers were tied up and unconscious. He quickly ran over and checked their pulses; they were stunned.
"About time you showed up," a slinky female voice mocked from the shadows. "I've been waiting."
"Who are you," he asked while carefully scanning the room.
"You don't recognize my voice," she asked sounding sincerely hurt. "Fine. I'll lift the veil for you, Brucey."
""Brucey?" Oh, no." he groaned, and sighed as the woman revealed herself. A tall, slender, olive tan skinned woman appeared to his right and slowly walked over. She had raven hair, which was tied into a low ponytail braid. That, besides her bright eyes under a mask, which had two bright green stripes, were all he could see since the rest of her seemed to be covered in shadows.
"Hello, Kendra," he said half growling in disgust. "Last I heard, you were cutting a record in New York." She smiled wistfully as she thought about the old days, but she couldn't taste it for long before he ruined it. "Guess that didn't happen. How have you been?"
"Not as good as you, all comfy in that pretty space station," she said stopping in front of him and crossing her arms. He now saw that her body wasn't covered in shadows, she was just in a black cat suit which had a brown stitched corset and gloves with a silver belt.
"If you like it so much, why didn't you accept the offer to join," he asked eyeing her carefully. Kendra wasn't one you trusted easily. Even though she was considered one of the good guys to some members of the League, she was more of a double agent who couldn't make up their mind as to which side they were really on.
"I prefer to work alone," she stated coldly. "Thought it was the same for you," she added accusingly.
"It is," he countered quickly, growing annoyed with her. Just then, J'ohn came over the Comm. link again telling him to hurry up and get to Kyrgyzstan.
"So I see," she said alerting him that she heard J'ohn, effectively outing him as a liar. "You're welcome, by the way, for the thugs. Garbage collection is normally on Monday, but I thought I'd make an exception in their case."
"So I see," he mimicked her and turned on his heel, cape nearly whipping her face. "I gotta go."
"I heard." She stepped in his path and smiled wickedly. "Business or pleasure?"
"What do you care," he asked, moving toward the door again, not really caring about the answer, their time together ended a long time ago.
"Indulge me," she said forcefully, stepping in his path again. "You can't deny there's still something between us." Her fingers were now lacing his chest playfully.
"You're right," he said giving her the wrong impression before grabbing her hand, "and I'm afraid it's the law." He pushed her aside and went out the door, quickly shooting his grapnel to the previous roof and made his way to his jet.
"Kyrgyzstan, huh," she said from the other side of the stealthy jet as the police sirens came to their ears. "That's in Russia, right? Always wanted to go there."
"How did you get here so fast, and just why are you here," he asked walking around to face her menacingly.
"That's for me to know and you to find out. Maybe you will soon, since I'm going to go with you," she stated simply, the same wicked grin on her lips as she hoped into the back seat of the jet.
"I don't think so. Get out," he stated as he pulled her from the back seat of the jet forcefully.
"Finally! An intervention," she shouted with glee, raising her hands to the air. Suddenly, she's becoming the Joker, he thought, less than amused at her behavior. Kendra wasn't even a child or adolescent rebellious teen, she was a full-grown woman at the age of twenty-nine.
"You should be an expert on those, Kendra." It was true that Kendra had always been a few sandwiches short of a picnic basket, but her actions were weird – even for her. "What was yours again? Alcohol abuse or illegal Splicing?"
"Very funny, Brucey, but you know very well that I'm legit. And the name's Taipana. Every vigilante has an alter ego, that's mine. You'd do well to use it." Her arms were crossed again and it was then that he noticed her nails. She'd sharpened them to a deadly point and left them completely free from the gloves, and green like the stripes of her mask. There was something odd about her nails, a surprising new development for sure.
"I've yet to see proof of that." He pushed past her yet again, steel in his voice.
"Then let me prove it," she persisted, almost begging as she grabbed his arm and forcing him to face her. "Take me on your mission in Kyrgyzstan."
"Give me one good reason why I should," he asked unconvinced that she was either serious or trustworthy. She didn't exactly have a stellar record of coming through in the clutch.
"I thought I just did," she replied cockily and released his arms from her bone-crushing grip. He stared at her for a moment, contemplating as to whether or not he should trust her again.
"Last time I went out on a limb for you, you nearly got me and Barbara killed." Reminding her of that day was one of her weak points; it was obvious by the way she cringed.
"A small mission gone awry," she argued in frustration. "You know better than anyone that I'm clean now."
"Do I?" She was desperate to convince him of otherwise, a sure sign she wasn't as clean as she said she was.
"If life wasn't risky, we couldn't enjoy it." She was coaxing him with her old charms. Kendra always pulled that dirty trick, using her feminine wiles to get her way.
"All people have something to hide, Kendra. The brighter the picture, the darker the negative."
"Am I coming or not, because this word spar is getting really old, Bats," she sighed, crossing her arms and leaning to the side.
"Fine, Taipana," he said icily. "You can come. Keep up," he ordered and jumped into the cockpit, Taipana close behind – literally. "Just remember, I'll be watching you."
"I would expect nothing less," she said casually, smiling to herself.
'If she's lying, I turn her in like I should've done years ago. If not, well…she can just go about her business,' he thought.
The jet fired up and they flew off swiftly into the night. Taipana watched the police in the short moments she had. As they dragged the thugs away, they were puzzled by one thing. The same thing that Batman was confused by: the thugs had been unconscious, but they didn't have a single mark on them. Besides that, their pulses were slowed down to a fatal rate.
A/N: Intervention: to interfere, usually through force or threat of force, in the affairs of another nation.
P.S.: Four pages total.