Chapter 5 -
London, Dianas apartment -
If it had not been for charity, the Mayor of Gotham's annual ball, then Diana may have followed her usual routine in her London apartment. Rather than getting dressed to help her casually blend in with the rather extravagant upper class of the world not that she needed to that is. To her this ball was more of an opportunity for the upper class to divide themselves into two, a few who are flaunting their wealth and status and their good nature while the others are wholeheartedly pledging themselves to a cause their true faces. She also starts to practise her smile that needs to be plastered across her face, in front of the mirror. Diana was all too used to this constant routine since her time in Patriarchs world. Especially after the battle of Metropolis and her being a member of the Justice League, a female member at that. In some ways a sole outcast mirroring her position outside of Themyscira. It is times like this she misses her sisters who would help in dressing her, more like struggling and forcing her as Diana reflects upon those memories a smile cracks up her natural beauty. Something she tells herself she inherited from her Mother.
She sighs as she gets up from the chair and starts walking around towards the balcony of her flat. Her room was comforting, her own choice and the simple decorations are her own preference, something she did not have total control of as much on her Island, she still misses her home but accepts this freedom she has now. She misses her kind yet strong mother and wishes to go back soon but thinks she cannot due to the circumstances that she left.
"Let's get back to dressing. What is up with the fashion of such tight clothes and long dresses."
If it were up to her she would rather go out wearing her battle armour or her casual loose fitting combat gear she thought to herself as she wore another dress not liking the one she wore before. She is not against the art of revealing and appreciating ones own body but some of the fashion she saw had her thinking and confused her. As she picked up another dress to try
"Oooh that one looks nice"
A sweet yet irritating voice said. Diana looked to where the voice came from but she saw nothing.
She did not move her gaze for some time waiting to see if her head was playing tricks on her or an Olympian paying her a visit, "what would they be doing..." Before she could finish her train of thought she had been disturbed through the ringing of her phone. She answered it due to the familiarity of the caller, Steve, who else would call her than her liaison. He was her plus one after all or was she his.
"Diana are you ready?" Steve asked.
"Do you need me to send someone or will you be okay"
Agh, Diana thought to herself. That protective tone appeared in his voice again
"No need, that is okay but thank you for asking, are you in Gotham. I shall be there in a while. Sorry for making you wait."
Diana looked again at her dresses that had been gifted by her new friend Etta Candy. Whom she befriended a couple of weeks after moving into Washington, she was glad that Steve had introduced her, she was a great person and Diana felt bad having to leave her behind when she moved to her current residence.
She made a quick decision and started 'fixing' herself up for the event.
The Ball -
Diana said her dues, stood with her fellow League members or the ones who had showed up with the exception of J'onn and Batman. The elusive two of the group. But she got the feeling that both of them are around in disguise.
She mostly stood around Steve as he introduced her to a couple of people. But eventually ventured on her own. Amongst the mass crowd of people. She was an Amazon after all.
Even though the main attraction had been the League the general talk and focus had been Diana and her subtle greyish crimson fade to a stark navy blue dress. A slight Grecian decorative flower pattern flowed through the bottom edge of her dress. Diana thought and hoped not to stand out as much, for the other dress in her eyes had been more stylish and elaborate which would surely 'stick out like a sore thumb', for the events focus and talk should have been as Diana was hoping about the charity and the kids that are in need of help but quite a few conversations and questions had been about her and where she got her dress from, who does her make up and where does she buy it etc etc.
Not that she needed any but she thought she would indulge herself in slight make up over her cheeks. Something she regretted now. As she continued to answer the questions while trying to change the topic back to the focus of the event. Failing miserably as it came back to her looks and what not. The mind of her could not still understand why reporters and people in general had been so fascinated with such stuff. Beauty and looks was a natural and everyday thing so why did they become such a big topic in an event such as this. She wished to be fighting a wild minotaur or the hydra than be answering these questions.
What irritated her most had been the fact that a select few beauty products had been promoted under her name which Steve and Etta said would help to improve her public image. Something that irritated her but she went along with.
For the life of her Diana was glad to see the Flash in his scarlet suit save her from the horde of media outlets surrounding her. For his appetite had become a sudden talk of interest after they spotted him near the gigantic food counter.
"Thank you Flash, I owe you one"
She mouthed as his face fell to despair as he saw what came upon him. She felt sorry for her fellow leaguer. But at such times one has to save themselves. Diana may be a warrior and ready to take on any challenge but there had been certain things she was not prepared to take on. She was still annoyed over what she read about herself in one particular blog. Diana dismissed these thoughts for now as her main focus had been on the now, on this ball.
"That was a close save. Poor Flash but if you do not mind can I get a photograph. Wonder Woman"
She heard a slight familiar voice say as she turned around. It took her some time but she recognized it as the fiery red head she saved. James Olsen and as she recently researched and found out he was the upcoming photographer of the Daily Planet. To her his works of capture may as well have been the best. A pure smile was across his face, with a slight ogling of her, which she was used to and totally dismissed without a second thought. She was glad he asked first especially here, so she gave permission and he snapped away.
"Thanks the chief will love these". Olsen replied as he went along snapping a few more pictures of other people for his paper.
Diana roamed around the grand hall of Wayne Manor, where the function had been held. Even though she did not want to she tried her best to avoid eye contact unless she had to. She did not want to be bombarded with another hundred questions about her looks.
She admired the old neo Gothic structure of the building. Seems like the Waynes had a great taste even if the current heir was spiralling it all down south. The walls seemed to have an age to them, a clear history even if the small decorations for this ball had covered them up slightly. But in the centre of the ceiling hanged a highly decorative and expensive chandelier shimmering steadily and from where she was standing at the other corner of the room she spotted a magnificent painting of a happy couple. The chandelier looked like an arrow and seemed to be pointing towards the painting of Thomas and Martha Wayne.
"Is everything to your taste your highness."
The head butler asked her with his deep commanding British accent. He had been a short fellow. Well shorter than her. Ranging around 5'9 or 6'. But he carried himself well and he seemed to have a neatness to how he dressed he seemed to be someone who required order in what he does, due to his Black tuxedo and the fresh white gloves. His full set of hair had silver streaks but the style and fashion his beard and hair had been trimmed in it told her he had a military background. High position yet retired, probably due to an injury or his age. As he carried a jet black painted wooden cane with him.
Diana replied with a "No thank you mister...
"Alfred Pennyworth Ma'am, and are you sure? You seem like you could use a glass of water."
Diana had to accept she surely needed something to quench her thirst so she took the glass that he presented her with from a waiter that was venturing around with trays.
"Hope everything is to your liking and please come straight to me if you need anything. I shall be around.
But if you will excuse me I need to be somewhere." And off Alfred went as he sped to prevent a small disaster.
She walked outside crossing the magnificent set of glass doors to the vast open garden. But before she went any further she noticed two people conversing with each other, well it was the famous Bruce Wayne in a deep conversation with another man whose face she could not make out due to him facing his back towards her. So she bided her time and when she spotted that Bruce Wayne noticed her presence, his mood and characteristic changed from a serious stance to a more care free one. She noticed he whispered something to his friend and then for some reason he started shouting at him, so they are not friends it seems she thought to herself and then she noticed he spilt his drink on the other person and walked towards her, while saying
"The nerve of some people thinking they can come to my house and insult me, your lucky I don't have you fired or sue the Daily Planet for such an accusation…
Ah, hello" He said while he acted as if he just noticed her.
"Don't worry about that, its just some dumb reporter thinking he can hassle people with his dumb questions". Bruce said as he tried to put his arm around her, before he could she took a step back.
"Suit your self" He said as he brushed it off and walked back inside.
She looked back at the spilled reporter, she could tell he was annoyed and he was swearing under her breath as she could tell from his annoyed expression. Bruce Wayne seemed to have ruined his suit. She walked over to reporter as he was cleaning the drink off his glasses and as he wore them again she asked if he was ok.
"Oh me I'm fine, perfectly fine, thank you for asking."
While he replied back to her Diana could not shake the odd feeling that she met him before.
"But I should be heading back. Princess." He stared at her for a while. The usual male stare where she knows she is being examined and ogled at. She dismissed it completely and asked him.
"Do you need help and I think at times reporters should mind their own business, Bruce Wayne maybe spoilt and arrogant but you shouldn't invade his private life" In as much of a kind tone she could muster, she was slightly fed up of reporters today it didn't help that she read a piece of her being 'insulted' and 'dragged through the dirt' before coming here.
All the while Clark just stood there dumbfounded, wondering what the hell did Bruce tell her.
Clark left her to her own thoughts, before things got worse for him. He could clearly tell something was wrong and she needed time and he clearly had other matters to take care of.
After Clark left, Diana just stood there staring at the cityscape below. The Manor sat atop a far off hill at the outskirts of Gotham city. She loved this view it reminded her of her home. Even though the city looked magnificent from where she stood now, she knew when looked close and if someone wanted to really know and appreciate the city then she may have to venture the streets and alleyways for the corruption and decay of Gotham can be found there. The part that needed cleaning and nurturing to, like a plant, the flower petals needed the roots to be vibrant and alive, in some way this city had been the plant that Batman was driven to nurture. From her point of view the city looked amazing and she could understand why the police force would dedicate their lives to protect it even if its condition had been as worse as she read. They saw hope; hope that glimmered through the cities various lightings as well the many children, the future of this city.
"Diana, be prepared."
A voice announced as she looked back the voice seemed familiar but the person did not. She was convinced it was J'onn but the person standing in front of her had been someone else entirely. But then as his skin started to change and form into water as he changed his appearance, she remembered that disguising himself had been one of his many talents.
"Clearly as League members we do not know each other." She thought to her, as she made a mental note to bring that up in the next weekly meeting.
"What is wrong J'onn and what is the plan?"
Sorry for such a long delay. Pretty sure people have forgotten about this story, I nearly did. Too busy with everything else you see and when I had a bit of free time I started to draw. Hopefully I wont have to make you guys wait again. Sorry for the many mistakes I have a lot of stuff I NEED to fix up on and thank you all for the kind reviews and feedback. Yes I have slightly gotten lost with the story and tried a different approach with this chapter, tried to be more descriptive but I guess I have failed to do that.