I am so, SO sorry for the long wait. Between work and projects around the house, I haven't had much time for writing, and every time I DID get free time, I'd get distracted by something else, or I'd be writing something for one of my other stories.
To everyone still following this, thank you so much. I really am trying my best not to rush this.
Alrighty, on with the show
It was a few days later when Becca realized her uncle had no idea that she was safe, since he hadn't heard any word from her for a while. Her phone buzzed in her pocket and she took it out as she walked down the hall, just missing the call.
Oh. Oh, wow. Thirty-seven missed calls and twenty voice messages.
Every single one of them was from her uncle.
"Oops," Becca muttered, calling him back. "Hey, Uncle Bruce, I literally just checked my phone and saw you called—" she had to move the phone away from her ear as her uncle's shouting voice came through her phone's speaker. "Jeez, you don't have to yell!" she huffed. Then, "Yes, I know what day of the week it is, and yes, I meant to call you and tell you I was ok." More words on his end, not yelling this time but not exactly calm. "I mean it, Uncle B, I meant to call you, I've just been . . . busy," she said after a moment's hesitation. It wasn't a complete lie—she'd spent a good chunk of time looking after Mr. 'You-Will-All-Cower-Before-Me-In-Witless-Terror' (And WOW that was a mouthful).
Becca turned the corner, still trying to placate her uncle, when she stopped dead and gave an irritated huff. Sitting not even five feet from the door to his temporary room was Mr. Pain-In-The-Ass himself, leaning against the wall and pressing a hand to his stomach.
'Great,' Becca thought irritably. 'The dummy tried to move and popped his stitches.' She frowned at the dark red stain spreading across his bandaged stomach and switched the phone to her other ear. "Look, Uncle B, you don't have to worry, okay? I'm okay, I'm safe, and I really have to go now, kay? Bye." She hung up the phone and pocketed it, then proceeded to stand in front of Crane and frown down at him. "Please tell me you weren't stupid enough to think you could move around yet." She didn't phrase it as a question.
Her only answer was an icy glare that would've put Mr. Freeze to shame. Becca rolled her eyes and crouched down. "For a genius, you're not that smart—you know that, right?"
When Becca moved to help him up he jerked out of her grip, his back sliding down the wall and hitting the tiled floor with a 'thump.' "I don't need your help," he hissed, his voice barely audible.
Becca snorted and stood up. "Fine," she snapped. "Have fun bleeding to death." She turned on her heels and stomped off. She slowed down after the first few paces and she glanced over her shoulder at the man bleeding out on her grandmother's (antique) tiled floor.
'Are you REALLY just going to leave him there?' a voice in the back of her mind whispered. 'Do you REALLY want this man's death on your conscience when you KNOW you could've helped him?'
"Damn," Becca huffed while turning around and heading back. She slid his arm over her shoulder and hauled him up—at this point, he was too weak from blood loss to really fight back. She managed to get him back to bed, and then she called for help. Her grandmother's medics came and stitched him back up, and Becca sat with him the whole time.
"THAT was your big escape plan?" she asked him once he'd regained consciousness. "Someone guts you like a fish and you think you can move around only a few days later?"
His glare lacked some of its venom since he was hopped up on pain medication. "I don't need to explain my actions to anyone, especially not you," he rasped.
Becca huffed and crossed her arms. "Y'know, you got a funny way of showing gratitude—I just save your butt, AGAIN."
"I didn't ASK for your help," he shot back. "I don't need your help, I don't even WANT your help!" his voice raised to a shout and he was breathing heavily.
"Yeah, well, too bad!" she yelled right back. "Until that hole in your gut is healed, I'm not going anywhere! I'm not happy about it either, but like it or not you're stuck with me."
The look he gave her was incredulous. "You're not happy about this either?" he repeated. "Why waste your time, then?"
Becca huffed out a breath of air and brought her knees up to her chest. "Yeah, like I'm really gonna let you die," she said, not meeting his accusing stare. After a few seconds she got up and left the room.
When she came back she had another bowl of soup and a roll. "Don't complain, just shut up and eat it," she ordered, putting the tray in front of him, and then she sat back down and read her book.
This was how it went for a while—he was given medication, they would argue, he was given food and she sat with him while he ate. They still didn't like each other, but by now they were almost used to each other.
During the third week, something happened after he was given his medication, during the time when she was getting him food. He was lying on his back, thinking of new insults, when the lights went out.
When they came back on, the Batman was standing at the foot of the bed, and he didn't look happy.
Becca was on her way to Crane's room when the lights went out. Surprisingly, her first thought was about the bastard and whether or not he was alright. Setting the sandwich she'd brought on a nearby table, she ran the rest of the way to his room.
"I don't believe this," she muttered.
Crane's IV's and heart monitor had been ripped off and the goddamn Batman had him up against the wall.
'Well, at least the stitches won't pop,' she thought, looking around for a weapon. All she found was a broom.
Eh, good enough.
"I'm losing my patience, Crane," Batman warned. "For the last time, where is she?"
"D-don't know what you're t-talking about," Crane wheezed. He was pretty sure one of his ribs was fractured and his stomach was aching—it was hard to breathe and his vision was getting fuzzy.
"Hey Dipshit! Why don't you pick on someone your own size?"
The Batman was startled enough to lose his grip on Crane, who slid to the floor with a thud and sat there, trying his best not to lose consciousness.
Rebecca rushed in the room and stood in front of him, causing the masked man to take a step back.
'Ah, shit,' Becca thought once she realized just how big this guy was. 'Great idea, David, piss off Goliath.' Still, Crane coughed up a little blood and her grip on the broom tightened. "I mean it, Fuckwit! Back off or I'll kick your ass!"
Tough talk from a girl a little over five feet, she realized, but she didn't back down.
"I don't want to hurt you," he said slowly.
"Too damn bad, then, cuz you ain't leaving with him while I'm still standing!"
With all his tricks, she never stopped to consider knock-out gas might be one of them.
When Becca regained consciousness, she was back at Wayne Manor in her own room. She sat up and blinked, trying to clear her vision.
How did she get back here? The last thing she remembered was standing in front of Crane, protecting him from . . . .
That sneak bastard! He must've knocked her out and brought her back to her uncle!
Becca got up and ran out of her room. "Uncle Bruce!"
He was in the hall with the grandfather clock and he looked relieved to see her. "Rebecca, thank good ness you're alright," he said, reaching out for her. "Are you feeling alright?"
Becca shrugged off his hand. "How did I get here?" she demanded.
Her uncle frowned. "Aren't you glad to be back? After being held captive for so long, I would have thought you'd be glad to be home." He brushed a hand over her forehead. "I hoe your fever's not coming back."
It was Becca's turn to frown. "Fever?" she asked.
Her uncle checked her pulse and nodded. "After Falcone took you, he was intercepted by a rival gang. They held you hostage for weeks, and when we finally found you, you were hallucinating, muttering things about saving someone."
Becca swallowed. "Hallucinating?" She shook her head. "That can't be right. I was with my—with someone I knew, and we found someone in trouble. I helped take care of him, and then. . . . . then someone came for him." She swallowed again. "I couldn't stop them from taking him."
It hit her then just how much she'd grown used to the stubborn jackass she'd been looking after, and how much it hurt that she couldn't save him.
Becca's uncle put a hand on her back. "I'm afraid whatever happened wasn't real—it was a fever dream, nothing more." He sent her back to bed and once he was out of her room, Becca checked her phone; full battery, six missed calls, three voice messages and two texts. All of them were from Mabel, saying that she was worried. Becca texted back that she was okay now, she was back at Wayne Manor. She hesitated, and then asked her friend what had happened. Her phone started ringing—Mabel was calling.
"Hey," Becca answered.
Oh, thank goodness you're alright! You are alright, right?
"Yeah, I'm fine—back home, safe and sound."
Thank God, I was getting worried. I went to check on Dr. Crane after the lights went out and he was gone, so I looked for you, and you were gone too, and I didn't know what to think, I just—
"Wait, hold on," Becca interrupted. "That actually happened?"
Well, of course it did! Why would you think otherwise?
Becca swallowed. "My uncle told me I'd been drugged, that I dreamt the whole thing." She paused. "He lied to me. Why did he lie to me?"
Maybe he wanted you to forget it ever happened. How much does he know?
"I'm not sure, but he's hiding something—and I'm going to find out what it is."
A/N: Again, I am so sorry for the wait. R&R please.