"The Sunset," he started, "it looks different tonight, more so than before."

High a top the city streets, Batman stood on an outcropping of one of the various office buildings, while Superman hung in mid-air beside him. The horizon sky did seem different with its burnt orange and yellow glow being distorted by some eerie green hue.

For the past couple of days the JLA had been on full alert as strange happenings had been occurring around the globe. It had been months since the Justice League had seen any major crisis that needed their full attention, but on this night, both the Dark Knight and the Man of Steel could sense the ominous tension that filled the air.

Without warning, but not unexpected, the earth began to shake; the quakes were getting worse.

The super duo observed the city streets below, watching as Gotham's denizens panicked and tried to avoid the shattered glass and heavy stones that toppled from there high perched homes. Immediately, Superman sprung into action and with pin point accuracy protected the citizens below with the focused bolts of heat from his eyes. Batman stood silent as his gaze was pulled elsewhere...pulled elsewhere into the sky.

Swirling in a blaze of reddish, purple energy, a large vortex appeared above the almost set sun. After a moment of stillness, something seemingly came thorough the portal, and as if on cue, the quake subsided and the vortex shut.

The falling object streaked toward the earth, over the Dark Knight's position and into the darkened western city sky. Batman watched as the object crashed on the edge of the city just as Superman returned to his side. "Clark, what was that?"

Confused, the man of steel hesitated, "I don't know." Batman again stood silent. "My vision blurred when what ever it was entered the atmosphere.

"Was it Kryptonite?"

"No," Superman answered, "something else...something else entirely."

Raising slightly in the air, superman prepared to purse the object. "Be on your guard Bruce, he warned, "I'll see what that thing was, you catch up."

With that, Superman took to the sky leaving the Batman alone with his thoughts. Bruce could tell something was wrong with Clark, and could tell that he was hiding something as well. Choosing to file the thought away for now, Batman stepped off the outcropping and into the open air, unsheathing his trademark grapple-gun in the process. The hunt for answers was on.

Meanwhile, higher a top the cityscape, a shadowy figure peered from the roof of the same building the two super-heroes had just been standing. Breathing deeply, and coldly, the mass of darkness stood and approached the edge of the structure. Watching the bat-like man swing across the casim to the next building, the dark figure too stepped into the open air. The chase was on.