Batman/Star Wars: Dark Side 3 - Invasion
By Christopher W. Blaine (cwblainegmail.com)
DISCLAIMER: All characters contained in this story are copyright 2009 by their respective license holders. They are used her for fan-related entertainment purposes only. This original story is copyright 2009 by Christopher W. Blaine.
Beyond the 52: The multiverse is vast and always growing. The 52 is the home of the DC Universe you read about in comics, but there are many other areas where possibilities lie. The Time Enforcement Agency patrols the Temporal Domain, which contains Earth-149 through Earth-191.
These are their stories.
Earth-170, the Temporal Domain
Amanda Waller was not a woman who had been gifted with stunning good looks or a genius intelligence. Quite the opposite, the mixture of her parents' DNA had produced a woman of girth and grit, a person who had learned real power came not from within, but from outside the body. Understanding people and their desires were her talents.
As an African-American woman, many not-in-the-know would comment she had been "given" her position in the CIA. Nothing was further from the truth. Starting out as an analyst, she had manipulated and back-stabbed her way to the head of the Suicide Squad department. In the world of intelligence and covert operations, she was a legend for her political gamemanship. To the super-hero community, she was the devil incarnate.
That suited her fine as she hated the super-heroes. Wearing a costume and being different did not, in her opinion, give you the right to be above the law. She had worked decades for that privilege. People like Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman just assumed they were special.
Along with the heroes came their rivals, the super-villains. Rob a bank with a ski mask and you were a thug; rob one in a diaper and call yourself the Poo-Poo Bandit and suddenly people thought you were beyond the power of the police to handle.
It was all ludicrous she told herself as she watched her technicians work on a bank of video screens. Most costumed villains were stopped by the police, but you would not know it if you read papers like the Daily Planet. Submitting to the aura of mystique that surrounded the hero community, they perpetuated the myth that only the Justice League or Teen Titans could protect the world.
The reality was that many super-villains, tired of having beat cops kick the crap out of them after an arrest, would try to go straight after a couple of years. Unfortunately, the modern mythology made every "super-villain" into a wanna-be Hitler and no matter how hard they tried, the good life eluded them. The public simply could never accept that Catwoman, the Parasite or Goldface would want to give up the bad and live for the good.
That was where Amanda stepped in. She was quite adept at selecting which villains really wanted to start over. By joining the Suicide Squad, they were agreeing to use their talents and abilities for Uncle Sam in exchange for a new life. Again, what people on the outside saw was a portly, middle-aged black woman in charge of washed-up and whining bad guys.
Amanda knew differently. Under her command was a paramilitary force composed of people who, if not for momentary lapses of judgment, may have taken down power houses like Superman, Captain Marvel or Power Girl.
She was, in reality, the most powerful person in the world. At her order, the royal family in England could be assassinated by Deadshot. Soviet-era nuclear missiles could be set to launch by Chesire. The leader of an organized crime family could be eaten by Killer Croc.
Amanda Waller held the magic "get out of jail free" card. All of the marbles were hers. None of this was given to her and would never be taken away without a fight.
One by one, the screens in the bank flickered to life. The metallic skull logo of the Legion of Doom was emblazoned on a red background. The Legion was a subsidiary program of the Suicide Squad. Where the Squad actually performed the missions, the Legion of Doom selected them.
The group did not officially exist. No records were kept of any meetings. Documents were transmitted electronically with nanobots attached to them. Once a meeting was over, the small robots would consume the files. Members did not know the identities of other members. Code names were assigned by Amanda, who used the think tank to assist her in making key decisions.
It was called the Legion of Doom because she only consulted them whenever a problem arose where not being proactive would result in some super-hero or do-gooder taking unsanctioned actions.
While the secure Internet connections were being made, Amanda considered the events that had caused her to put together the Legion. Five years before, the monster called Doomsday had walked through the National Guard, the Justice League and finally Superman. The thought of something so powerful made the government take notice.
Then Mongul destroyed Coast City and again America was caught past year, Captain Atom, a hero who worked closely with the military, had discovered a cloaked satellite in orbit above the Earth. The discovery was not publicized, but the President wanted more information. The mission was given to the Suicide Squad. Amanda agreed the satellite had to be destroyed, but she also needed to know who had built it and why. How had it been constructed? How had it been put into position? What would have happened if some other agency, like Checkmate, had been given the mission?
The Legion's first assignment had been to answer those questions. The determined Brother Eye, the name of the satellite, was the product of an individual possessed of extreme paranoia and matching financial resources. Through various tools at the disposal of the members of the Legion of Doom, everything was traced back to the Batman. The hero had become convinced aliens and metahumans posed a potential threat to Earth.
Amanda did not disagree with him, but he was not the person to be the overseer of the world. That was her job and to that end she had championed a government-sponsored investigation into the activities of the Batman. He, of course, resisted and soon there was a crisis of sorts with heroes supporting Batman standing against those who felt he had gone too far. All the while, Suicide Squad agents were dumping data from Brother Eye's memory into CIA computers.
Two months ago, the war had ended when several of Batman's allies, including the Dark Knight himself, were "accidentally" killed in battle with Captain Atom. Other supporters, including Black Lightning, Metamorpho, the Question and Geo-Gorce had allegedly fled to Markovia. Geo-Force happened to be the ruler of the small European country.
Rumors were the Bat was not actually dead, but that didn't matter. His knowledge now belonged to Amanda. His Brother Eye was space junk and the super-hero community was splintered and fractured. All of these were good for Amanda.
The screens began to portray the members of the Legion. Their faces appeared on monitors that had been labeled with masking tape with their code names. The members did not know who Amanda was and they would not be able to see her. The only thing they were aware of was their own personal benefits for being members.
For example, member "Princess"was an heiress with an addiction to sex, drugs and reality television. In front of the cameras she played the typical blond idiot. The truth was her IQ was around 180 and the only reason she was unable to achieve any real success was because of her fetishes for much older men and much younger women. So long as she pied her vices outside the United States, she was assured anyone who tried to reveal her secrets disappeared.
Each one of them was indebted to Amanda. "Brainiac", a French physicist, had four ex-wives and a lot of alimony. "Touchdown"' was a former quarterback who needed a new identity after his gambling debts exceeded his worth. The real prize was the member code-named "Executive". Lex Luthor was perhaps the most intelligent man on Earth. He had created LexCorp. He had been president of the United States. He was also a convicted felon who murdered without regard to achieve his goals. Anyone else would have gone to the gas chamber long ago. Most thought it was Superman's pleas for mercy that kept Luthor from being executed. In reality, the scientist has a deal with the government. In order for that deal to remain kosher, he had to be submissive to Amanda's whims.
Once all of the technicians were out of the room, two security team members, personally selected by Amanda, scanned the area for listening devices. Outside the building and throughout the world, seven spy satellites continuously monitored Internet traffic. Anyone attempting to listen in would be targeted by a missile defense laser and eliminated.
The one thing Amanda stressed about the Legion, especially to its members, was that it only met to discuss matters of "crisis" level proportions. This included intergalactic invasions, space/time problems and sudden metahuman activity outside the norm.
The last member to arrive was "Disciple", an Arabic fundamentalist who was currently advising the government of Iran on the nuclear "power"program.
Amanda, speaking into a microphone that changed her voice, opened the conference. "All of you have had 48 hours to review the package. The information was pulled from a reliable source outside our group".
Touchdown was the first to comment. "Whoever collected this info was very clear the threat presented by this New Order was very real."
"What exactly do you mean by that?" Amanda asked.
There were several murmurs and Touchdown responded. "Most of the evaluations I have looked at detail a potential threat. The author of this document was very clear this was going to happen." There was a pause and Touchdown concluded his explanation. "It's just a matter of when."
Brainiac agreed. His voice was filtered to give him an American accent. "I cannot speak to tactics or intentions, but the basic physics involved are sound. Interdimensional travel is possible, but..."
Athena, head of S.T.A.R. Labs in Greece, who had a habit of acquiring antiquities on the black market, took up the conversation. "What Brainiac is trying to say is most of the experiences we have had with extra-dimensional travel has been between parallel worlds. The evidence presented suggests an entirely different reality. The laws of Creation as we know them may not apply."
"But, we have records from the Justice League," Brainiac replied, not willing to let a woman get the last word in. "The individuals identified as Darth Maul and Boba Fett were able to operate normally in this universe. Therefore, while I agree we are dealing with a civilization of advanced technology, it is not anything beyond what is possible in this universe."
The monitor with Lex Luthor's face showed a bald-headed man with an arrogant smirk. Amanda could tell he had already formulated a strategy. Luthor was more than willing to let the others add their two cents worth.
The actual issue before the Legion of Doom dealt with an intergalactic empire under the leadership of a possible metahuman named Palpatine. On three occasions, the Justice League had been forced to confront threats related to the empire. First, 4 years ago, a warrior named Darth Maul fought and defeated the more powerful members of the League, including Superman, Captain Marvel and Guy Gardner. Maul was finally beaten by Batman and the Martian Manhunter. A year later, Batman took a Justice League Task Force to Maul's dimension to rescue another hero, Nightwing. Information gathered from computers in the Empire had, along with a later attempt to assassinate Green Lantern, convinced Batman to create Brother Eye.
"This empire is a combination of the Third Reich and Rome," Princess summarized. "They know we're here and they've shown interest in our metahumans. It seems to me the biggest issue is the time difference."
Luthor could no longer contain himself. Amanda checked her PDA and noted Luthor had escaped from his prison cell a week before. "Have any of you primates considered the possibility this is an example of Morrow's Principle?"
Thomas Oscar Morrow was the world's leading expert on time. He would have been recruited for the Legion except Amanda had yet to locate him. "For those of you who specialize in the more mundane sciences," Luthor began, "Morrow stated that it is not possible for two dimensions to have the exact same characteristics. When presented with travel from one dimension to another and there are no notable variances, one must assume everything is from the same reality, but different time periods."
Amanda was intrigued. Were they dealing with forces from the future? Her fingers danced over her laptop keyboard, calling up files on known time-travelers. One name, Booster Gold, stuck out. He was a hero who was supposed to have come from the 25th century. He had also been part of Batman's Justice League Task Force. Booster Gold was also, from the looks of his credit report, seriously in debt.
Astro was an Australian astronomer and expert on the many alien worlds that had regular contact with Earth. "Morrow likes to restate the work of others, but I concede that Executive has a point. I personally believe this is a civilization residing in a place found a long, long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away."
"Exactly," Luthor agreed. "If what we have read is true, we, or at least the Justice League, introduced time travel to a civilization that died out millions of years ago."