Disclaimer: Batverse, not mine. But someday...mark my words...muahahaha!
Go to the official CATverse timeline website for placement in the series rather than a page and a half of timeline recap. http/ www . freewebs . com / bitemetechie / catverse . html Just get rid of the spaces, darlings.
I warn you now, this thing is insanely dialogue heavy. Because dialogue is what I'm best at.
Dead men tell no tales.
Dead women on the other hand, as Jonathan Crane was unfortunate enough to find out, were perfectly capable of telling tales.
And they had slides.
Once he got over the initial shock of their resurfacing (and subsequent rescue that accompanied it), he had grudgingly allowed them back into his life.
That was mistake number one.
Mistake number two was replying in the affirmative when one of them innocently asked "Do you want to know what we were up to over the past year?"
His first clue that this would end badly was the fact that one of them had asked innocently.
Innocence and these three didn't belong in the same dictionary, much less the same sentence.
Their eyes had lit up like the proverbial Christmas trees when he bothered to express a smidgen of interest in their activities, and like the captain of the Titanic, all he could do was stand around while his own personal icebergs bustled around the common area of the lair, fixing popcorn and setting up some sort of projection contraption the likes of which Crane had never laid eyes on.
Once they were set up to their satisfaction, they forcefully shoved him on the couch, covered him with a blanket, set a bowl of popcorn in his lap and proceeded to settle in around him--Captain and Al on either side of him and Techie once again settling in between his knees.
His annoyance grew tenfold at this development...they just clustered around him like they belonged there...
Never mind the fact that they seemed to instinctively stick to the parts of him that were cold due to the frigid January weather. He certainly wasn't enjoying them smothering him.
"Everyone ready?" Al asked, the projector clicker in hand.
"Aye, aye!" Captain said cheerfully before snuggling her head more securely into the Scarecrow's shoulder.
Techie turned her head and gave Crane an amused look that he wanted to slap off her face. "What she said."
The projector whirred to life with that odd buzzing noise that he associated with old light bulbs that were on their last legs and the show began.
The image of all three women outside an airport, Al and Captain looking rather happy with Techie looking mildly ill, popped up in front of Crane's face. "Okay, this is us outside of Gotham airport...this is after we tried taking straight jobs."
"Which we failed at."
"Spectacularly!" The Captain added with glee.
Al continued. "We got ahold of some money and decided to make ourselves scarce for awhile."
Captain pointed excitedly at the projection screen. "That's the baggage claim where Techie got stuck."
Techie buried her head in her hands, blushing furiously.
Crane just ate a handful of popcorn, enjoying her discomfort.
The Captain continued as if Techie wasn't dying of mortification at her feet. "See that little hole there? Number One bet her a hundred bucks she couldn't get in it."
"Techie got halfway in...and got stuck," Al piped up. "We decided to call it a draw."
The Captain giggled. "But the firemen who came to rescue her were nice."
"Until we stole their fire truck," Techie muttered darkly. "They got kinda pissed after that."
Al dipped her hand into the popcorn bowl. "Just a tip, Squishykins?"
He glared at her in reply to the pet name.
She just grinned at him. "If they have axes? Don't make them mad."
A picture of the Captain with the most uneven haircut that didn't grace a scissor-happy child's Barbie doll was next and the corner of Crane's mouth twisted upwards into a wry smirk.
"And that's how the Captain got her haircut in March."
"That's us outside the Greyhound station, deciding that a bus would be a better mode of transportation."
"And that's the bus to Mexico!"
"And that's the sign that says 'Fifteen miles to Canada'," Techie said while glancing at the Captain.
"And this is why the Captain's not allowed to plan the trips anymore."
"Hey, Canada was fun," the Captain defended. "Show him the one of the unicycle guy!"
This caught Crane's interest. "Unicycle guy?"
The Captain's face split into a grin. "Well, there was this guy on a unicycle..."
"Don't tell him that story!" Techie said with alarm.
"And he was missing a finger."
"For God's sake, Captain, don't tell him that story!"
"But I have to tell it for the next slide to make sense!"
"We have a SLIDE of that one?"
The Captain tipped her head at Techie curiously. "Yes..."
"That's it, you're not allowed to have the camera anymore."
"Can I finish telling the story now?"
"But the slide..."
Techie blew out a breath. "Fine! FINE! Long story short, Captain made a bet with a guy on a unicycle. There, the story's told."
"But you didn't tell him what happened!"
"You set him on fire! I figured that would be the obvious conclusion!"
"But that's not the whole story..."
"Ugh! FINE! She accidentally--or so she claims--set the unicycle guy on fire."
"And...he inadvertently set the nearest car on fire..."
"And that car caught the nearest building on fire..."
The Captain's voice had turned sing-songy now. "AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAND?"
"AND THEY LOST AN ENTIRE CITY BLOCK BECAUSE OF IT! HAPPY NOW?"
"Yup," the Captain said with satisfaction.
"Which brings us to our next slide," Al said mischievously.
Techie groaned. "That's Barnacle Bill's, the seafood restaurant where Al tried to free the tank lobsters."
"And that's the Matre De...see him running away?"
"Apparently, one of those lobsters was genetically engineered..." Captain giggled nervously. "And Techie kinda...um...set off a recessive gene with...something."
"Got as big as a house cat, I swear."
"Luckily, the authorities didn't make a connection to us..."
"At least...most of them didn't."
"But there was this one cop..."
"And Captain wanted to play Mister Blonde."
"So we let her."
Techie looked at Al questioningly. "Do we have the slides from when she was trying to do the dance?"
"Um, I think so."
"There, that's the one."
"There's Captain dancing to Bob Dylan."
"We couldn't find Stealer's Wheel in time."
"And there's Captain falling on her face."
"Apparently, that severed ear was hella slippery."
"But it all worked out ok..."
"The Captain had to get rid of that pair of sneakers, though."
"Ear just doesn't come out, no matter how much stain remover you use."
"We even tried club soda..."
"And there's the warehouse on fire."
"And there's the fire truck pulling up to the warehouse..."
"And no, those aren't the same firemen who gave the Captain her nice haircut. But they had the same mentality."
"And there they are recognizing us from our wanted posters for the unicycle guy fire."
"Aaaand here we are, stealing their truck...again."
"And there's Techie playing with the ladder gadget and--ow...yeah, she hit her head on that bridge."
"Lucky it didn't come off as fast as Al was driving."
"Oh! And there's Wonder Woman!"
"And there's Captain putting on her best 'Is there a problem?' innocent face."
"Do you think she would have bought it if you weren't covered in blood, soot and ash, Cap?"
"Probably not," Captain said morosely.
Crane's head was starting to spin with the constant changing of imagery in front of him, but his henchgirls weren't about to let up until they were good and ready to.
"Anyways," Al said, "We got away from Miss Star-Spangled-Panties and decided to head to--"
Techie started cackling suddenly. "Oh my favorite."
"Shut up, Techie." Captain said, turning bright red.
Crane didn't see anything particularly spectacular about this slide...it was just a mass of gold, green and purple beads.
"Those are the Captain's beads," Al said by way of explanation.
Techie's giggling was starting to sound somewhat strained due to the fact she was trying to control the malevolent laughter.
"Yeah, Captain really lived up to her superhero name that week."
The Captain konked Techie on the head with a nearby throw pillow. "Shut up!"
"What? You don't want Squishums to know that you were once the N--OOF!"
Captain was off the couch and on top of Techie before Crane had time to register that she'd moved.
"That was my spleen you landed on!" Techie wriggled under the Captain, eyeballs bulging.
Crane looked at Al to find that she looked just as bewildered as he was. Apparently, these three didn't share all their secrets...
"You promised you wouldn't tell anyone!" The Captain exclaimed.
"Oh fine, you party pooper." Techie grunted. "Would you get off me now, please? OW! Stop bouncing on me!"
"You know, you're really quite squashy, you know that? Like a sofa cushion."
"Would you knock it off? You're going to leave bruises!"
"Just like a sofa cushion!"
"Al! Help!" Techie called feebly from beneath her commanding officer.
"She won't help you now," the Captain said with mock malice, throwing in a wicked laugh to add to the effect.
"If I offer to tell her all those dirty little secrets you've told me, she will!"
That was all it took to get Al off the couch and in the middle of the friendly fray on the floor in front of the sofa.
Crane wisely took this to be his cue to exit.
They three wrestling women on the floor didn't notice he was gone until his bedroom door slammed, signifying that he'd had enough of their shenanigans for one evening.
The Captain, Al and Techie untangled from each other, trying to catch their breaths as they recovered from their little match.
"We should feel sorry for him," Al said, nodding towards his most likely locked door.
"Should," the Captain agreed.
"But I just…can't," Techie said as she crawled up off the floor.
"He deserves what he gets," Al said sagely, taking Techie's hand and allowing her to haul her off the floor.
They in turn pulled the Captain up. "Well, not the hurty parts…but the emotional stuff. Well, not that either, but the teasing!"
"He deserves lurve," Techie piped up, brushing herself off.
"Yes! That. Lurve."
"Everything else is an unfortunate coincidence," Al replied.
"A series of unfortunate coincidences," Techie added.
"A series of really unfortunate coincidences." Captain made a face. "But the lurve makes it better. Mostly. I think it helps, at any rate."
"It's our way of forcing him to grow as a human being." Al grinned.
"I'm pretty sure in Arkham they don't prescribe hug therapy," Techie answered.
"But they should!" Captain insisted, stomping her foot in her vehemence. "So many of them would be better off if they were regularly hugged and had little stuffed bunnies to play with and lots and lots of chocolate."
"Chocolate?" Al said suddenly.
"That's the best idea I've had all day, isn't it?"
"Get the brownie mix."
A/N: I admit it. Most of this was part of actual conversations between Nova and I. We're odd people but we make for entertaining fiction.