Summary: For anyone who grew up in Gotham, corruption has become a way of life, and Bruce Wayne is no exception.
Bruce Wayne lounged comfortably in a conference chair near the end of the table, headphones in his ears, looking for all the world like a man nodding his head to his music. What his disgruntled board members did not know was that Bruce Wayne was actually nodding his head to static and police reports.
Nothing of dire importance had alarmed him thus far, but Bruce liked to be informed. So, when the radio crackled and delivered news of a planned bank heist, he was quick to his feet.
Stretching luxuriously, never mind the man he was cutting off mid-sentence, Bruce pulled out his earphones and flashed the businessmen a winning smile. "Well, I trust you gentlemen can carry on without me. I've got a date." With a wink, he slipped out of the meeting.
"I'm driving," he said, holding a hand out for the keys as he walked briskly toward Alfred in the parking garage.
"Tuning in to the police radios again, are we, sir?" Alfred said, tossing the keys and rounding to the passenger seat.
"Bank robbery," Bruce answered, putting the car in gear. "I plan to be there first." Tires squealing, Bruce tore out of the parking garage at a hair-raising speed and weaved easily through traffic.
Alfred sat straight in his seat, hand curled inconspicuously around the door handle, and smiled grimly. "At this rate, sir, you'll be there with hours to spare."
The blare of sirens and flashing lights cut off Bruce's reply, and heaving a sigh, he swerved to the side of the road. The officer took his dear time climbing from his vehicle, during which time Bruce had to endure Alfred's silent "I told you so". Bruce scowled at the cop as he finally approached. He didn't have time for this! His hand went automatically to his wallet and pulled out the three largest bills he was carrying before rolling down the window.
The officer blinked in recognition as the tinted window disappeared and then recomposed himself and asked, "Sir, do you know how fast you were going?"
Bruce managed a stiff smile in the man's direction. "Look Officer, I'm in a hurry, so why don't I just make a little donation to the police department…" Smoothly, he palmed the officer the wad of cash. "Just a little walking around money for one of Gotham's finest, and we'll call it even."
The cop leveled a glare at Bruce until he spotted the numbers on the bills, and then his face went white. "M-Move along, sir," he stuttered.
Bruce rolled up the window and pealed away as a humored twinkle lit up Alfred's eyes in the passenger seat. Bruce knew he was going to regret asking, but he did it anyways.
"What's so funny, Alfred?" he asked as he took a turn at fifty.
"I'm just curious, Master Wayne, are you interested in cleaning up the corrupt of Gotham or encouraging them?"
Bruce almost laughed before the comment caught up with him, and then he paused, slowing down slightly, brow furrowed. "Well, damn," he said after a moment's consideration, "I guess I'll have to start driving the speed limit."
Alfred looked infuriatingly satisfied. "That may be so, Master Wayne, but it is a small price to pay, is it not?"
As Bruce slowed to the allotted thirty-five miles per hour, he tried not to look crestfallen. "Yeah, a small price."