Batman Meets Sherlock Holmes

A/N: A crossover fic, if you will. The product of random pondering on what Holmes and Watson would do if they, by some incredible twist of a space-time paradox, met Batman on the streets of London in the course of a case.

"Obviously the fellow is very rich," Holmes said to me as we were idling by a store window. I glanced around, trying to find the source of his statement. He grabbed my arm to stop my movement and indicated the reflection in the window of a man dressed all in black crossing the street behind us. We had been tailing him for some time now, trying to find out what the mysterious man's purpose was in London. So far, I only knew that his name was Bruce Wayne, and that he had arrived three days ago.

"How do you deduce that, Holmes? He is dressed as simply as the rest of us!" I exclaimed. Holmes said in an undertone,

"It is not only clothes which can give an indication of wealth. Take a look at that tool belt he wears. Certainly not a set of workman's tools. One is a grappling hook, another is a compact revolver, and another is a strange contraption which seems to be an incredibly small telephone." I wondered how he could make all that out from the reflection in the store window. I knew my friend's eyes were sharp, but not that sharp.

"Holmes, there is no such telephone in existence which is that small."

"I am merely stating facts, Watson." After a pause, he added, "And he is also an orphan."

"Really, Holmes! Don't you think you are taking it a bit too far?" I exclaimed.

"If I told my chain of reasoning, you would likely arrive at the same conclusion."

"Then please enlighten me, Holmes."

"We have been watching him three days now, have we not?"

"Yes," said I.

"And in that time, he has jumped from one rooftop to another, used a strange cape- like apparatus to glide from enormous heights, quickly and efficiently dispatched numerous thugs, and all the while managing to avoid attracting the- admittedly lax- attentions of the constabulary. Now tell me, Watson. What decent, self- respecting mother allows a son to engage in such dangerous activities? What father simply stands by and watches his boy commit acts of vigilantism? And where does the caped crusader get the money for his astonishing tool belt? Direct inheritance, I assure you. So we know he is an orphan, rich, and was wronged some way in his childhood."

"I follow you completely up until the last bit."

"Honestly, Watson. What kind of Englishman takes it into his head to go after the scum of London's underbelly, single-handedly and systematically beating them all to scintillating pulp?" A small smile played at the corner of my lips as I seized the opening Holmes had so clumsily allowed.

"We do, Holmes." My smile widened as his eyebrow rose just a fraction, acknowledging that I had just scored a point.

"Yes, well, that is beside the matter. Simple psychological studies have proven numerous times that traumatic childhood experiences often have pronounced effects on adult life. It is obvious this man was badly wronged as a child. Moreover, seeing as he is an orphan, we can infer that that wrong was the murder of his parents. Now that he is all grown up, he has decided to take his revenge against all evildoers." I shook my head wonderingly, finding it surprising as always that somehow these astounding conclusions made sense. But then again, one could expect nothing less from Sherlock Holmes.

"Amazing, as always, Holmes."

"Elementary, my dear Watson."