Ah I've missed you all so much ^_^ I apologize for the long wait, I certainly didn't mean for it to be that long but I've had my hands full settling back into the grove of college after winter vacations. That and I went to see The Hobbit and…your beloved author is obsessed. For almost the entire month, anything Hobbit related has been constantly circling my thoughts. It still is but I could finally shove it into one corner and write!
Thorn frowned at the plans in front of him. It hadn't taken him long to figure out that a mass break out wouldn't be a smart move. He simply wasn't comfortable enough with his skills to attempt it and besides, where could he hide them all safely while still keeping them happy? No, that was definitely out of the question. He could, however, get rid of a rather obnoxious thorn in their sides, if one could excuse the pun. Getting rid of Bolton seemed to be the only thing he could do at that point in time, so now to plan how he would do it and it was at times like these that he wished genius operations seemed to come to him as easily as the Joker. He glared at the harshly scribbled out plans that littered the pages in front of him, each one seeming to mock him with his apparent stupidity.
'Why don't you just turn on the bat signal while you're at it?' His eyes widened. That was it! A wolfish grin broke out across his face and he hastily scribbled his plan down on the only white space of paper left. Why should he have to do all the work, when the very system that would try to lock him up could do it for him? He slipped into the soft yet warm costume and sat down in front of the video camera. By this time tomorrow he'd have all of Gotham's attention.
The members of the Rogue gallery slunk through the doors leading to the rec room one by one. Ever since Thorn's sudden re-appearance, nostalgia had over taken the group leading to long periods of silent reflection. As each one passed through the double doors, they remembered the fateful day that those doors had been slammed open to reveal a small boy in clothes way too large for him. Every day after his departure, hoping to be the one to spot him but ten years was a long time to hold fast to a dream and soon they had stopped looking, stopped dreaming, and stopped hoping. That day, however, they each had scanned the room with desperate hope yet sickening dread. One by one they flocked to the couches before the T.V., which would now only ever play the news, and sat down gingerly, with the exception of the Joker. No one, not even Bolton, was brave enough to try anything with the Crown Prince of Crime. He wouldn't live through the experience. Harley leaned heavily against Joker's shoulder and he turned his head slightly to press his cheek to her forehead. Despite popular opinion, he did care for her, in his own twisted way. It might not have always been the most conventional of relationships but he was an unconventional guy. He surveyed his fellow Rouges that had been warped into this twisted version of a family all thanks to one little boy. They all looked drained, emotionally and physically, and almost lost. He was sure that the same emotions occasionally flickered across his face when his walls briefly fell at times and he quickly decided that he hated this feeling. No matter what way he looked at it, he couldn't stomach the thought of Thorn anywhere else other than where he could protect him. He, along with the others, raised his eyes listlessly as the afternoon news began to play and the top story made them all sit up a little straighter and their blood run ice cold. There was the bat signal or what it used to be. The image on the screen was a mass of tangled metal, sparking wires, and glass fragments. Off to the side was a single security guard, who had apparently come to investigate all the noise, with his throat ripped out. The chill however, came from what was written, painfully obviously in blood, on the wall behind the mess.
Catch Me If You Can, Batsy!
Batman's eyes narrowed as he, now under the cover of darkness, surveyed the wreck left for him. The body had been removed but everything else had been left alone for him. They needn't have bothered. Whoever had done this had clearly wanted to make a statement, he doubted very much that they wanted to be caught before it was made, and, as he looked down at the tape wrapped in an evidence bag, he had a feeling he was going to find out what that was in the very near future. The drive back to the bat cave was tense and even Robin's bantering wouldn't change that. The tape of course had been wiped clean and was unmarked. They both expected to see the face of the Joker or maybe Riddler pop up on the screen so they were immensely surprised to see a new face, so to speak. The person's face was in fact hidden by a large black hood that swept down to his nose. Careful cuts had been made to show a pair of yellow eyes and, what looked to be large pointed ears were standing up right at the top of the hood. The hood itself had been attached to a long cloak that was swept back over the person's broad shoulders. He wore a shirt, midnight blue in colour that was itself rather long, ending at his knees and being tied off tightly at the waist by a black belt. The shirt's looseness ceased at his elbows where black fabric had been wrapped tightly from there down to his knuckles. The pants were the same colour as the shirt and ceased their looseness at mid-shin where they disappeared into a pair of black boots. He gave a wolfish grin to the camera before addressing it.
"So it's finally time to address the caped crusader. Wolf bane's the name and the hunt's the game. That's what I'm inviting you on batsy." Batman's eyes narrowed at the nickname. "A kind of scavenger hunt if you will. I've placed clues for you at several locations across Gotham. What's in it for you, you might ask. Well there's a handful of hostages that would like your help and, at the end, you'll be able to lock away the man that caused their pain. I suppose though you want your first clue so here it is:
Old fat spider spinning in a tree!
Old fat spider can't see me!
Won't you stop,
Stop your spinning and look for me!
Old Tomnoddy, all big body,
Old Tomnoddy can't spy me!
Down you drop!
You'll never catch me up your tree!
Lazy Lob and crazy Cob
are weaving webs to wind me.
I am far more sweet than other meat,
but still they cannot find me!
Here am I, naughty little fly;
you are fat and lazy.
You cannot trap me, though you try,
in your cobwebs crazy."
With another grin, the screen turned black leaving the two to worry over this new threat.