Howl

This is, of course, a very bad idea.

I'm not exactly sure why I'm doing it, either. After all, I'm a criminal, the Bat patrol are most definitely good guys. Helping them should be out of the question, and may possibly get me killed. Ergo, a bad idea. Oh well, at least I can be comforted by the fact that then it's not just for them this little kitty risking her neck. Half of a stolen conversation overheard in a seedy downtown joint has made me want to find out what the heck's going on in this place, so I guess it's also a case of curiosity killed the cat. Isn't it lucky that I've got nine lives?

The place isn't exactly a bastion of security, that's for sure. Easy to disconnect the electronics, and there are guards, but they're quite disgustingly oblivious. Hell, maybe I'm just wasting my time. After all, overheard conversations in bars are hardly concrete sources of information. Some half-drunk patron bragging that he knows someone who's got the key to all of the Batman's secrets hardly means that he's in any real danger. Idiot. Am I that hot and bothered about the Bat that I'll go running off with the slightest provocation just to try and impress him? This is way too much loyalty for a cat.

I'm just about to quit in disgust when there's a chorus of shouts, thumps and general expletives from one of the smaller buildings in the compound. My curiosity wrestles futilely with my disgust and wins out, at least for the moment, and I glide through the shadows to see what's going on. Beating out the guards, most of who are just waking up and wondering what's going on. Pathetic.

I try a small peak in through the window and then a larger one when I realise exactly what it is that I'm seeing. Ouch. Two men in labs coats are lying on the floor, various limbs twisted in ways that look entirely unnatural. Scattered glass and metal from the remains of what looked like some kind of medical lab. And a guy in the middle of it all, tearing the place apart like a miniature hurricane. Shreds on the remains of a costume cling to his body too, and I realise that it's one I know. Azrael. I've worked with him a few times, during my rare moments of semi-heroism. One of the Bat's. And apparently a really bad guy to piss off. Don't recognise the face, though. Pity, but it's one to file away. Now lets see what's going on with him then…

In retrospect, slipping through the window and walking up to the guy was an insanely bad move. Pity that you only tend to appreciate these kinds of things when you're lying on your back with a nutcase trying to shove a 6 inch shard of glass down your throat. I guess I was thrown by his whole "good guy" status. Still, very dumb. I wish I could be very smart in my next move and come up with an amazingly witty phase, but the only thing that springs to mind is:

"You moron! I'm not your enemy!"

That's it Selina, insult the guy who's about to kill you. That'll make him change his mind.

Fortunately though, it does. He stops with the glass two inches from my throat and stares at me as though he has no idea who the hell I am. And his hands are shaking like leaves, and his pupils are dilated, huge blackness filling his eyes. And there are needle marks all down his arm, showing through the shreds of his costume. Oh shit. He's been drugged. He's so out of it he has no idea what's going on and it looks like they've pumped him full of stuff that's acting like two ton's of adrenalin in his system. Nasty.

"…catwoman?"

Recognition. That's good.

"I'm not here to hurt you for god's sake. Will you please just get off!"

He stares at me for a few more seconds, and then the expression on his face just seems to snap back into sanity. He stares in a kind of numb horror at the shard of glass in his hand. Then he throws it in to the corner and throws himself right after it.

I get up gingerly and watch him shake in the corner. A few seconds later his expression twists with rage and he slams his hand two inches into the wall and stares fixedly at the blood seeping from it. Definitely out of it. What the hell am I going to do? More that half of me is saying just to get right out of here. This has nothing to do with me.

But…

I can hear the guards outside. If I go now there's either going to be a massacre or they're going to pump him full of tranquillisers and go back to doing whatever they were… Oh hell. "Someone who's got the key to all of the Batman's secrets". They were trying to break him and get out everything that he knows. And he's an ally of the Bat, which mean's that he probably does know enough to cause severe problems. And heck, practically speaking I'm going to have a harder job of it if the Bat isn't around - he gets rid of some of the more sadistic thugs that might want to home in on my territory. There, I've come up with a rational reason as to why I'm doing this to benefit me and not just out of the goodness of my heart. I do feel a lot better…

To be continued…