Dana stepped out of the classroom and into the hall. School was finally over; and with the weekend around the corner she was hoping to finally get a chance to talk to Terry. It had been three days since this all began and they still hadn't found time to sit down and talk.
It's not like I even know what I want to talk about exactly. It's just... I don't know... He's Batman. It explains everything. And I don't even know why; Why he started or why he continues. He's been Batman for three years... and I had no idea. He hid it from me for three years... to protect me... as idiotic as that reasoning was, Dana thought, as she headed toward the exit.
For three years he hid it from me. For three years he lied to me. Was that even the real reason? she couldn't help but wonder. This is Gotham, did he really think not telling me would shield me somehow? Or was that just the excuse he used so he didn't feel guilty not telling me the truth? Even if it was just subconsciously, did he really just... not trust me? Or think I just couldn't handle it? she wondered.
She sighed and shook her head. There's no point in thinking about this right now. Besides, this is Terry, he leaps without looking and reacts without thinking... but most of all, he protects without hesitating; He has a bigger heart for compassion then I've ever seen in anyone else. He probably was just trying to protect me and was doing that the only way he know how... by keeping me as far away from his other life as possible.
She shook her head again. Stupid philosophy... I don't even know how many times I nearly dumped him... or how many nights I spent furious at him for missing our dates, thinking he didn't care, while he probably spent the entire time fighting monsters and super villains, saving the city. If he had just told me the truth, I would have understood... and maybe even been able to help somehow... be his moral support or something. She sighed, or at least not yell at him when he's misses our date.
Dana stopped and looked around. Terry usually met up with her after their last class so they could walk to the parking lot together, but Terry was nowhere to be seen and the exit was only a few feet away. Where is he? Is he just running late? Or did something happen? She wondered, as she stepped aside, deciding to wait for him.
She sighed, guess that's one thing that's not going to change... I always seem to be waiting for him, she thought with both amusement and annoyance. Well, at least I will know why now, she reasoned, as she leaned against the wall behind her. Most of the time anyway, she added, wondering what could be keeping him.
Terry anxiously waited while a police officer took Matt's statement. He wanted to get out of here and start looking for their mom, but he wasn't comfortable leaving Matt here out in the open... even with the police right here. It can't take too much longer, he hopefully reasoned, as he glanced down at his watch. This is taking too long... he thought growing more and more uncomfortable with each passing moment. I need to get out there and start looking for Mom! But... first I need to check Matt out of here and get him to Wayne's for safety... then somehow get Matt to not snoop around the manor or touch anything, before I can even start trying to figure out where Inque took Mom.
Why would Inque take her? It's not her style... Inque's a mercenary, gun for hire... why would she...? Terry sighed, Me, that's why. To use her to get to me... Like she used me as bait to get Wayne out in the open. She's going to use Mom as bait to lure me into a trap... and it'll work. At least that means Mom should be safe... for now... until Inque decides she no longer useful.
I have to find her... and quickly. Who knows what Inque's going to do to Mom... or how long she will consider her useful... And that's only if her plan is to use Mom as bait... if not... I don't... I don't even want to think about what she'd do to her.
I gotta call Wayne, maybe he can tap into the security cameras to find out which direction Inque went... and I should probably warn him that I'm bringing Matt there... He'll understand... right?
"I'm going to make a call," he said, more to Matt then the police officer, as he headed out of the room, to find a more private spot to call Wayne without having to worry about eavesdroppers.
Terry stepped through the doorway and passed the police officer guarding it. Where were you when Mom and Matt needed you? he couldn't help but wonder, as he headed down the long hall. Knew I shouldn't have gone to school... waste of time; I should have been here, to help them. I could've stopped Inque and gotten them both to safety. Keeping up appearances isn't worth it if the people around me are going to get hurt.
"Hey you, you're that kid aren't you?" a man asked, as he headed over to Terry. "The one they're saying is Batman. You're the reason the Ts and Jokerz attacked my daughter's school!" he added accusingly, as he stepped a little too close for Terry's comfort. "You're the reason she got hurt!"
"What?" Terry replied, caught completely off-guard by this man's sudden appearance and accusal. "I... I did everything I could!" he explained defensively, taking a step back.
"Everything you could wasn't good enough!" the man angrily replied, as he took another step closer to Terry. "If you had just kept your nose out of other people's business and let the police do their jobs none of this would have happened! Your reckless 'heroics' have gotten more innocent people hurt then..."
"Sir," the police officer interrupted, as he came over to them. "I'm going to have to ask you to take a step back," he firmly informed.
"He..." the man started to argue.
"Is a kid and we are in a hospital. Now I'm going to ask you again; Step. Back."
The man silently complied, taking a few steps back, though not taking his angry stare off Terry as he did.
"Now I suggest you go be with your daughter," the officer urged.
The man gave Terry one last glare, before he turned and walked away.
"Thanks," Terry said, as the officer turned to return to his post by the door.
"Just doing my job," he replied with a hint of annoyance.
What's his problem? Terry wondered, before remembering the Commissioner's warning that some of the officers weren't too happy with him being Batman.
"Listen kid," the officer started, turning back to him, "if you really want to help this city, then join the police force... when you're old enough," he emphasized. "But stop this vigilante nonsense... you're only going to get yourself and those around you killed."
Terry inwardly sighed. "I'm not Batman," he simply replied, before turning to continue down the hall so the officer couldn't question or argue. "Wayne!" he said in surprise, nearly bumping into him. "What are you..."
"You called me, remember?" Bruce answered.
No, I... it's a cover, Terry realized, remembering the police officer standing a few feet away from them, "Yeah... I was just about to call you to find out where you were." But how did he know something happened? Is it on the news already?... the alert system he set up...he must have found out pretty soon after it happened; But wait a minute, if he knew, why didn't he call me?! "What kept you?" he asked as part of the cover, but also wondering why he didn't call. And if he knew why did it take so long for him to get here?
"I was taking care of a few things. As we discussed, you and your brother will be staying with me, until the police find your mother."
"Right..." Terry replied, wondering how he knew he wanted to take Matt to his place. Guess he came to the same conclusion... Wayne Manor is the safest place for him right now.
"I took the liberty of getting your brother discharged, we can leave whenever you two are ready," Bruce informed.
Terry nodded, How is he always two steps ahead of me? he wondered. "I'll let him know." The police officer's got to be done taking his statement by now, he reasoned, as he turned to head back. "And Wayne?" he started, stopping briefly turning back to Bruce. "Thanks." With the hospital stuff taken care of, now all we have to do is get Matt to Wayne Manor, then I can start looking for Mom... I just hope it won't be too late to pick up Inque's trail.
Mary gasped for air as Inque released her form her gooey form onto the cold concrete floor. Mary instantly turned toward Inque. "Where am I? Where's Matt? Why have you taken me?!" she frantically questioned, as she stood up. "Answer me!" she demanded, as Inque ignored her, simply stepping out of the room and closing the door behind her.
No! Mary thought, as she rushed to the door instantly pulling and twisting the doorknob, but the door didn't budge. She was locked in. "Answer me! Where am I? Why have you taken me?!" she demanded again, as she banged on the door, not really expecting an answer.
Matt, she thought, his panicked scream echoing in her mind. Please be safe.
"That's not really going to help," a male voice commented from behind her.
Mary's eyes widened, she had thought she was alone. She turned around to face him, his blonde hair and angular features seemed vaguely familiar.
"They never answer," he added.
"They?" Mary repeated. Inque's not working alone? Then someone could have gone after Matt and Terry too! she thought fear rising up within her.
He shrugged, "Whoever else is on the other side of that door. Inque doesn't really seem like the kidnapping type... so I figure she's got to be working with someone."
"...So you don't know for sure that she is working with someone?"
"I've only seen Inque... and I don't exactly remember much about how I got here," he explained, rubbing the back of his head.
Mary slowly nodded, hopefully that means Terry and Matt will be able to get help and somewhere safe, she thought. Please let them be safe.
I have to get out of here, she thought, looking around, the basicly empty room; the only thing in it was the lone bench the guy was sitting on. There were no windows and only the one door. Why would she take me? I'm no one important...
...This must have been what Terry was trying to warn me about; people coming after us, because he's Batman... Oh Terry...why? why did you have to be Batman?
She turned back to her cellmate. Why is he here?... and why is he so calm about it? she wondered. "Why are you here?"
He shrugged again, "As I said, they never answer," he paused, as he stood up. "A few months ago, I would have said for the ransom money... I used to be worth quite a bit... but after a run-in with a certain bat... I'm worth considerably less; So your guess is as good as mine," he commented.
Bat?... Terry? What would Terry have done that would make this man lose his fortune? she wondered. Who is he? And why does he seem familiar? Wait a minute... she thought, her eyes widening as it hit her. "You're Jordan Price! You tried to have Bruce Wayne killed!" she realized.
"I wouldn't have had to, if he had just stepped down, like any sane person would've. Someone of his age shouldn't be running a..." he stopped himself mid-rant and took a deep breath.
"Weren't you in prison? How did you get here?" she wondered aloud. "The Jailbreak," she realized.
He laughed, "I step two feet out of my cell, get whacked on the back of the head, and the next thing I know, I'm here. So... what's your story?"
Mary hesitated, unsure of what to say; he tried to have Bruce Wayne, her son's boss, killed, he clearly had no love for Batman... who was just recently revealed as her son, not to mention he was a criminal... she wasn't sure how much she really wanted him to know about her. "Not much to tell. I'm no one special," she finally answered.
He smiled knowingly, "Well, clearly that's not the case, otherwise you wouldn't be here," he pointed out. "Though... it's not like I know why I'm here, so I guess we'll be finding that out together... if they ever decide to tell us," he added in annoyance.
"So... you're just going to wait for them to decide to tell you what they want with you? You're not going to try and get out of here?"
"Door's locked and unless I'm missing something, there's no other way out... but if you've got a plan, I'm all ears."
"No... no plan," Mary replied, turning to the door. "Not yet," she clarified. She wasn't just going to wait for Inque and whoever else was on the other side of that door to do whatever they had planned or to tell them what they wanted; whatever that was, it wasn't going to be good. There was no way she was going to let them use her against her own son. She was going to get out of here; she just had to figure out how and whether or not she could trust Jordan Price as an ally.