I've decided to have some hardcore avant guarde fun with the Bruce Wayne: Murderer? Story line. You may not get it, but it makes ME feel better. It makes me feel better about a LOT of things.

Usual disclaimers apply.

No Love Lost


Batgirl watched Spoiler struggle with her bike, pulling it off the spiked strip that had popped her tires. "Least you could say goodbye."

She let the purple clad wanna-be turn the bike around. "Goodbye," Batgirl said smartly.

Spoiler turned on her heals, dragged that stupid purple bike with her and left. Batgirl was glad the tires on her bike were ruined. Maybe, if she had to walk all the way home, Spoiler would lose that big butt of hers.

She should feel guilty, but she didn't. Spoiler wasn't Bat. She just came here because Robin liked to kiss her. And Batman wanted her around. She didn't know why Batman wanted her around.

What was wrong with Batgirl? Batgirl did what he wanted her to do. She belonged to him first. He gave her the Bat. He didn't give Spoiler a Bat. So why did he let her come in the back way to the cave? Batman was in jail.

Then again…

Maybe Spoiler didn't know.

Well, she was dumb. And Robin should stop liking her.

Internally, she knew it was almost time to meet Nightwing at Oracle's place. Nightwing would fix things. Batman was good, and they'd get him out of jail.

Leaving through the front entrance of the cave (she knew a way around the security and bars—that's how she knew Batman still liked her better), she got on Oracle's channel. "Oracle. We fix yet?"

She was all the way into town before Oracle responded. "No. It's not fixed. I think this is going to be a long one. I'm still going over what you gave me. Nightwing will be here soon."

"Where Robin? I sawed his slut." Cassandra swung out to another building. She flew well enough to keep up with Batman, but what she really wanted was Nightwing's grace. Robin wasn't as good as Nightwing at flying across the roof tops, and Spoiler was just bad. No art in it at all. Just thunk, thunk thunk, one building to the next.

There was a sucking in of breath on the other end, and silence as Oracle held it. Finally, there was an uproar of laughter. Oracle started choking she was laughing so hard.


"BATGIRL!" She scolded finally, coming back under control. "You be nice. To both of them. We're going to need Spoiler's help because this is going to be a difficult case. We don't need fighting amongst the ranks."

"They make like bunnies," she said, landing on the roof of the clock tower. She knew she was expected; there were no lasers trained on her. It was fun to get past them, but no games today. It was work today.

She entered and went down to the computer room where Oracle spent all her time. The place was lit green and Oracle was looking at everything she had gotten the day before. When she heard Batgirl enter, she looked up and smiled, still chuckling to herself. "You SHOULD be nice. But thanks for the laugh."

"What nice?" Batgirl asked as she pulled her mask off.

"Nice is…" She sighed, turning back to her keyboards. There were certain words and concepts that Batgirl didn't understand yet. Oracle smiled to herself. She understood what SLUT meant though.

Batgirl approached the computers and stood next to Oracle, trying to make sense of the images and the words. Stupid Spoiler was supposed to teach her to read. She'd not taught her yet. "Where Nightwing? We save Batman."

Oracle shook her head. "Well, we knew you'd figure it out SOME time. Nightwing's coming. He got held up. I have a few things I want you to check out—a few leads."

"What Batman say happened?" That seemed like the simple way of finding out.

"He's not saying. Cassandra—he isn't going to be ANY help to us."

Breathlessly, Nightwing entered as Batgirl was thinking about this. Why wouldn't Batman help? She knew Batman wouldn't hurt anyone. Not like the way the body she saw had been hurt. Kane had taught her to be efficient. That had been… brutal.

"What's up? PLEASE have some good news for me," Nightwing asked desperately.

"I got some leads for you and the Little Comedian to check out. I don't have anything good, Dick. Mr. Sunshine and Happiness still wont tell me anything. I went to see him today. And that Sasha chick is a real idiot. She may or may not know, which almost doesn't matter because she's going to be NO help." Barbara sighed. She tore her glasses off of her face and rubbed her eyes. She'd been up since early yesterday when all of this had started, and it wasn't getting any clearer or better. Shaking her head, she lifted her mug of ice-cold coffee to her lips.

"Well, maybe we should pressure her a little," Nightwing offered. "Find out for sure. See what she knows about the murder. I mean, it wasn't like she didn't have access to weapons. Coulda got jealous…" Dick realized he was just running his mouth. Babs would have thought about it already.

"She know." Cassandra cleared up. "She in cave. She stupid like Spoiler. And he train her and stuff." Nightwing and Oracle were staring at her suddenly. "So I don't like! I don't have to like." You didn't have to like everybody. There wasn't a rule about that anywhere.

"He was TRAINING HER?" Oracle spat out. Her wide eyes met with Dick's. Was Bruce INSANE? "Maybe we should let him ROT!"

Nightwing looked at her, horrified. "BABS! He's my DAD! You can't just let him rot because--" He looked to Cassandra. "How long has he been training her?"

"Since training Spoiler."

One gloved hand ran through Dick's hair. "Great. And no one NOTICED? And why didn't you tell us?"

"Didn't ask. You too busy. Go sissy over Joker. And Robin dumb." She shrugged. Every time she'd go into the cave, that Sasha person, or Spoiler would be there. They didn't have Bats, and they weren't Robin or Nightwing, so they shouldn't be there.

"SISSY?" Dick got red-faced angry. He knew he shouldn't, but who WAS this girl, to be talking like this?

Barbara bit her lip, seeing the stand off. This was not what ANY of them needed now. Even IF Bruce was an idiot who was probably asking for it at this point.

And Nightwing should be around more. Then he'd know. And Robin should stop being stupid. Then Robin would know. They expected her to know that they didn't know anything. She rolled her eyes. "Expect I be your spy. You come home more. See Sasha in cave—and on patrol."

Dick lurched forward. "ON PATROL?" He looked back to Barbara. "He has her OUT IN THE FIELD? Is he NUTS?"

Batgirl folded her arms over her chest. "See, you come home more." It wasn't her fault, if he never came around any more.

"This isn't ABOUT me!" Dick yelled angrily. He turned to Barbara. "Is he NUTS? Is he INSANE? Is THAT what his problem is? We don't KNOW her! We don't know anything ABOUT her! And he's putting he in a mask and sending her out there!" His chest heaved in frustration. What was going on with his father? He'd pushed EVERYONE away, and replaced them with… with these GIRLS! Batgirl not withstanding.

"We go break Batman out. We leave Sasha there."

He snapped out of his thoughts at this. "Batgirl… I think they'll NOTICE if we bust him out. And they won't be happy."

"We take Batman out. Put Spoiler in. She take place." She knew that'd never work, but she'd recently learned what 'wishful thinking' meant.

"WHAT?" Dick sputtered. Why had he just walked into the Twilight Zone?

Barbara rolled her eyes and turned back to her computers. "She's been like that since she got back from the Cave. I think she's just discovered sarcasm."

"GREAT! Bruce is up on murder charges, and Cassandra has found her funny bone!" He threw his hands up in the air. "Where's Tim? I want to get to the bottom of this! Then, when we get Bruce of jail—I'm going to KILL him."

Cassandra tilted her head. "Why you kill him? He's good." He was her dad now. He just didn't know that yet.

Nightwing tore off his mask and rubbed his eyes.

"Dick, just let it go," Barbara warned. She didn't even need to look at him to know he was blowing a gasket. None of them really had the energy or time to explain to Cassandra the way things were. "Lets get to work."

Barbara handed out printouts of surveillance photos taken on the Manor grounds. "All right. I have everything leading up to Vesper entering the house, then there's nothing on any of the cameras."

Dick swallowed his anger and concentrated on the images of the dark haired woman entering the grounds and entering the manor. "Nothing, meaning the cameras were tampered with?"

Barbara shook her head. "I mean… they didn't pick anyone up. Anyone else, I mean. Which isn't good." She opened another folder of printouts, which contained autopsy and ballistic reports. "I've got a few other interesting pieces of information, possible height of the shooter and a few other things will be coming moment--"

There was a beep from the consol behind her.

"That Robin?" Batgirl asked as she looked through the papers. The words on the medical charts would mean more, if stupid Spoiler had taught her how to read, like she'd promised. Robin really needed to dump her.

"It's… Alfred." Barbara sounded very surprised. "I'm letting him up." She engaged the elevator to come down for the elderly man. "Well, hopefully he has some information for us. He came from seeing Bruce. Maybe it's too much to ask that Bruce said something helpful to him."

Dick wasn't paying attention. "I have a question about one of these numbers…"

Barbara pushed her glasses up on her nose and sat up straight, trying to see what he was talking about. "I can explain that. Or a possible explanation. It's the stuff on next page that gets confusing—when you hold it up against the stuff Batgirl brought me. We're officially up to our armpits in information, none of it making much sense."

As she spoke, the elevator arrived at it's destination, and Alfred Pennyworth could be heard approaching.

"Great. SO what you're saying is that we really don't know ANYTHING more than we knew last night, and unless Bruce or the blonde Bimbo start talking, we don't know anything?"

"Spoiler not know nothing."

"SASHA!" Nightwing ground out between gritted teeth. "So I guess that means we don't have ANYTHING because Bruce is playing martyr and wont say anything to anyone."

Entering the room, Alfred tossed a heavy bag onto Barbara's computer table. "I don't think that will be a problem any longer," Alfred said breathlessly.

Before anyone could tell her not to, Cassandra had opened the wet brown bag and had pulled out an unwrapped raw chicken.

Dick blinked once, staring at it. "WHAT is that?"

"A chicken," Batgirl pointed out helpfully.

"I can SEE that."

"I believe the term is 'tough love,'" Alfred said mildly.

Batgirl picked the chicken up by the legs and held it's stinking, sagging visage at head height, as if she'd found the toy in the bottom of the cerial. She stepped forward, between Alfred and Nightwing, taking charge. "Nightwing talk to Batman. He say what happened. Oracle find more stuff, then we get Batman out of jail."

Barbara bit her cheek, trying to hold back a chuckle. "And just what are YOU going to be doing, Little Miss Leadership?"

Cassandra grinned, still holding the chicken. "I go give 'tough love' to Spoiler."