Disclaimer: I own none of the characters from Birds of Prey, Oracle, Huntress or the cast of Superman, I'm just borrowing them for awhile.

Birds of Prey: Something funny happened on the way to the Aerie...

Barbara Gordon, the redheaded computer hacker and information broker known as Oracle smiled to herself as she worked away at the keyboard. So far it had been a surprisingly quiet day, with only a few requests coming in from various allies.

'I suspect that won't last,' Babs mused as she dipped a carrot into salad dressing and crunched on it noisily.

"Oracle?" Huntress' familiar voice crackled over the line.

Turning her wheelchair around the slim and athletic woman easily scooted over to the console. "Oracle here," she replied crisply, "what's your status?"

"I'm going to be held up arriving back at base," Huntress replied tersely.

"Trouble?" Oracle asked, feeling her stomach clench. Whenever her agents were out in the field Babs dreaded this kind of call, knowing that her people could be hurt or even killed.

"Not the kind you think," Helena Bertinelli said, the black haired woman dressed in blouse and jeans casually kicking the bumper of her car in disgust. "With my bike in the shop I was going to take my car over, but it won't start," she sighed.

Babs relaxed, smiling slightly. "So, taking transit?" she asked, looking amused.

"I suppose you couldn't just send the copter out to get me?" Helena asked hopefully.

"Sorry," Babs sounded apologetic, "but she and Manhunter are out on a job."

Helena frowned as she walked away from her car, "And you didn't call me?"

"It's more of a personal thing," Babs sounded amused as she explained, "apparently Manhunter's assistant Damon Matthews and his boyfriend are fighting, and 'Hunter needed a fast ride home to help deal with it."

"Considering his boyfriend is Obsidian, I can't blame her," Helena conceded. She sighed, "I'll check in once I get going, Oracle. Huntress out."

'Poor Helena,' Babs thought wryly.

Meanwhile, Helena left her temporary apartment on the edge of Suicide Slum and hurried to catch the bus. With the Birds being based in Metropolis and with her recent successful efforts to damage the Gotham gangs, Helena had decided to live at least part time here.

"And to think, it seemed like such a good idea at the time," Helena thought wryly as she walked to the corner.

With a loud crash the window of the Ace o' Spades bar exploded outward, glass flying. Without thinking about it Helena hurried forward, rushing inside to see a full blown barroom brawl going on. Chairs, people and beer were flying, men were yelling and the owner was tossing people around with ease.

"Yo, Helena!" Bibbo yelled, the popeye like bartender casually flattening a rowdy with one punch.

"Bibbo," Helena dodged a drunken fist, "you want me to call the cops?"

"Nah, they're just lettin' off steam," Bibbo waved it off.

"Okay, I'll..." Helena started when a fighter stumbled into her and with a splash a pitcher of beer was sloshed over her head.

"Oh hell," Bibbo sighed, having a very good idea of the mayhem that was going to follow.

Less than ten minutes later the bar was fully subdued and Helena rushed home for a change of clothes. "Oracle, I'm going to be a bit later."

"Why?" Babs asked innocently, having begun her daily regimen of exercise.

Helena scowled as she hurried out the door in fresh clothes, "Don't ask." The bus stop nearest to her home, unlike those in Gotham, was clean and not tagged by gangs which to Helena seemed vaguely wrong, somehow.

"How are you, Helena," the cheerful voice asked.

"Hey, Toby," Helena smiled.

Toby Raines was a reporter for the Metropolis Star, which normally would have made Helena wary considering her family's shady past. But the woman was remarkably kind and outgoing, and had quickly worn Helena's caution away. It had taken Helena a bit longer to adapt to Toby's dating a woman, being a good catholic girl and all, but she got used to that too.

"I suppose I couldn't ask a favor?" Toby asked, smiling.

"Oh?" Helena asked curiously.

"My girlfriend is coming home from Gotham, and I want to welcome her home," Toby looked sheepish, "but her son's also visiting at the time. Could you babysit for us, maybe?"

"You do know I'm a teacher, right?" Helena sighed as they waited for the bus.

"Even better," Toby smiled, "please?"

"I'll think about it," Helena finally sighed as the bus chugged up the street towards them. She noticed with a sinking feeling that the bus was packed to standing room only. "Just lovely," she sighed softly.

Packing on board the bus they soon found themselves wedged between the window and other passengers, though thankfully the window was open to let in a small breeze. As usual, they stopped and started their way up the street, then also as usual came to a halt as something blocked the road.

"What the...?" Toby asked, peering past someone's arm to see ahead of them.

Police and the Special Crimes Unit had the road blocked off, while up ahead a figure dressed in red and blue valiantly fought against a giant green robot. "Well crap," the driver sighed, "it's Brainiac again."

One of the down sides of living in Metropolis, Helena had found, was the supervillains. Like in Gotham there were regularly appearing baddies, but unlike Gotham here the villains tended to be more of a pain in the neck than murderous. Also unlike Gotham, the crooks battles were larger scale and tended to impact on people's day to day lives more.

"Any idea how long the wait will be?" Helena had to ask.

"No idea," the driver sighed, "but we're not moving till the cops give the okay, and that won't be till the fights over and cleanup's started."

"Terrific," Helena sighed. "Do you think I could get off here?"

"I shouldn't," the driver hesitated, "but yeah, okay." As he opened the front door he added, "Be careful, please."

"Will do," Helena said as she wiggled forward then out of the bus and onto the road amid the stopped cars.

Back at the Aerie, Barbara was chatting with Black Canary over the data link with the Justice League. "She and Red Arrow?" Babs sounded skeptical, "better keep an eye on Hawkgirl. Roy has had a bad run on lady friends."

"Don't I know it," Dinah agreed.

A soft beep from her control panel signaled an incoming call, "Sorry, I've got to go." Answering the call Babs noted it was Helena, "Where are you?"

"Still on my way," Helena answered, casually tossing the power unit she had yanked out of Brainiac aside, "it'll still be awhile."

"What's going on?" Babs frowned.

"I just don't think this is going to be my day," Helena signed off as the police and Superman hurried over.

A long and fairly involved explanation later and Helena was back on her way, this time on foot as she circled around the wrecked street. She hurried by the various buildings, skirted the Daily Planet in case Lois Lane was still looking for a interview, then hurried on.


"You have GOT to be kidding me!" Helena growled as the wall collapsed and a silver metallic figure loomed over her.

"All right, toots," Metallo said as he grabbed her, "just obey orders and nobody gets hurt." He paused, "What are you looking at me like that?"

Helena cracked her knuckles as she glared up at him dangerously, "You're going to find out in a second or so."

MUCH later in the day Babs smiled as she heard the elevator ping, announcing that her friend had finally arrived. Turning in her wheelchair Babs smiled sympathetically as Helena staggered out of the elevator. "Are you all right?" she asked as she rolled over to the other woman's side.

"For such a nice city," Helena frowned, "there's a lot of trouble out there."

'Or else you're a magnet for it,' Babs thought but did not say. "I've been keeping track of your progress via police scanner," she noted, "taking out three supervillains, two street gangs and several muggers must be a record."

Helena growled under her breath.

Fighting back a smile Babs said, "You're welcome to shower and use the hot tub to clean up." She sniffed, frowning, "You smell faintly of beer."

"That'd be from the brawl at the Ace o' Spades," Helena said as she stalked off to clean up and borrow some clothes.

An alarm made Helena freeze as Babs rolled over to the console. Typing a few keys she frowned, "Hostage taking midtown, involving Toyman." She turned to Helena, "Could you...?"

"Arrrgh," Helena groaned, clutching her head. "Okay, okay," she conceded after a moment, "just let me get my spare costume out..."

'Poor Helena,' Babs mused as she went back to work.


Notes: This probably doesn't fit with current DC continuity, and is more or less me having some fun with Huntress in Metropolis. It's set roughly after issue 100 of Birds of Prey, when Babs has expanded the team and made Huntress her prime agent.