I'm trying something different. One of the best characters ever created. He's complicated, has morals, has depth. We'll see where this goes.

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I am sitting in a dark, dingy alley. A piece of wet newspaper clings to my bare foot. The savior is sprawled out in my lap.

Even though unconscious his grace astounds me. The steady rise and fall of his chest lets me know he is still alive. I measure my breaths to match his, why, I do not know.

More blood trickles down my thigh but I think I am okay. My shoulder hurts, but I am alive. I cradle my savior in my lap.

My fingers ache. Take off the mask... my mind whispers. My fingers ache to take off his mask.

But no. I will not. I would be betraying his trust. He does not know me, but I will not do it. I itch to do it.

Instead I touch his face. My now dirty fingernails trace the ridges where his eyebrows would be, trailing down the lengthy ridge of his nose. I touch his ink and it feels warm. His cheekbones jut out but they are delicate somehow. I hope I do not wake him.

I like this. The mesmerizing dance of ink. Steady breathing. It is the most calm and peace that I have experienced in a long time.

He stirs. My hero stirs. A grunt. My heart flutters in my bruised chest.

He saved me.

A gloved hand reaches up to touch the back of his head. I bet his hair is matted with blood underneath. I find myself wondering what color his hair is. Are his eyes open yet? Open or closed.

He sighs and then goes completely rigid. He is now awake. His head cocks upward, toward my face. Then his hands shoot up immediately, checking.

"I didn't take it off." I croak, then clear my throat.

He does not say a word. His hands drop to his sides. He tries to get up.

"Be careful." I warn, hoping he does not hurt himself.

"Am always careful." He grounds out between clenched teeth, pulling himself up.

I sigh at the loss of warmth, the alley seems much colder.

"Is that why you got knocked out and ended up in my lap?" I shoot at him.

His head jerks sharply in my direction. I immediately regret my words. I can feel his eyes burning into me.

Heat flares, burning my face up. I must be as red as a lobster.

"I.. I didn't mean..." I begin.

He turns away. "Must go now." He says, a low growl. He is probably trying not to break my neck.

"Wait!" I yelp.

He reluctantly stops. Another raspy sigh, he turns back.

I bend down, wincing at the dull pain in my legs. I pick up a brown object.

My bad arm is holding it out to him. My lip curls up against the pain.

"Here." I say. "Your hat."

He looks at me, I can feel it. And I think it is the first time he really sees me. His eyes study the blush staining my cheeks, down to my neck, past my ripped, dirt smudged clothes, down to my fishnet stockings. He sees that I wear only one boot, the other is gone. Lost in the struggle. His eyes come back to my face.

He grunts. "Hurm." His gloved hand clenches into a fist before reaching out gingerly and taking the fedora.

"Thank you." I blurt out. "I can never really thank you enough."

My eyes find the pavement and study it.

"I believe in what you do." I whisper, shakily.

I hear his breathing slow.

"Go home." He rasps.

I nod, knowing he is right. I pick up my purse. I look at the men lying in various positions all around the alleyway.

One is crumpled on the ground, no human leg should be bent that way. One is face first dunked in a dumpster, blood soaking his shirt. One is slumped against a brick wall, beer bottle lodged in his face. Each villain, each lowlife, in a position befitting and becoming to their choices. Their evil.

But I save the last look only for him. I want to remember. Head tilted, his face shifts. His stance is confident. He takes one last look at me, pops his collar against the cold, and then turns.

The heels of his boots click and echo. When the sound fades, I go home.

***

Rorschach's Journal

Filth everywhere. No escape.

Saved girl in alleyway. Rapists. Too late. Felt bad. But got what they deserved.

Girl had red hair. Like a bloody sun. Green eyes. Knowing.

Said believed in what I do.

Confused. Felt bad for being too late. Rushed off.

But followed her home. Just in case. I think her arm was dislocated.

Intrigued. Did not think possible anymore.

Goddamn vermin. They'll pay.