Chapter 8: Who Unleashed the Beast?
Batman then starts to head towards the door of Croc's Lair. The huge metal door shredded to pieces. Batman walks inside his Lair with Austin yelling orders in the back, orders to Batman himself, telling him he's not permitted and let the "real detectives do their job." He ignores him like he's gotten used to ignore pain. A familiar voice then comes over Batman's ear piece-
Oracle: Batman, I have cross referenced the radio signal from Aaron Cash's walky-talky to the exact location of where(and hopefully)he might be; be careful though: they say Killer Croc may have escaped Arkham Asylum, but I can't find him anywhere on the Gotham City's Security Camera System. It's like he's vanished.
Batman: He won't get away long from me.
Oracle: I'm pretty sure. I'm sending the information now.
A tiny alarm is heard as Batman pulls something from out of his Utility Belt. It looks like a pager, but the numbers on it is not a phone number, but like a tracking device. The numbers keep getting smaller "93...92...91..."; he walks a bit farther down the cat walk that suppose to act as a guardian to the Arkham staff as it has an electric fence on it that has enough electric current to kill an elephant. Batman checks it's current status using his Detective Mode, it says that it's still on and warns him with a alarm and a yellow and red sign that says, "DANGER". This new system warns him when there is a hazard up ahead that he can not see himself, thanks to Lucius Fox.
A tiny alarm then goes off on the tracking device. Batman looks at it and the numbers have turned from black to red to signal that he's now going in the wrong direction. He then looks over and see's another metal door that leads to area referred as Croc's Pit which actually used to be apart of the Gotham Sewer System, but when Killer Croc came and the system was already fifteen years off the current system itself and decaying, the asylum made it apart of Croc's Lair and make some modifications to it for him.
This door, not severed in pieces like the main entrance to the Lair, has been only torn off it's hinges. Batman can see the security walk tunnel that leads to the Pit. It's caged lights, although some blinking, still giving him enough light to see. Batman walks into the tunnel as a few feet later it begins to steep down a little, a little more, then before it goes down too much stairs replace it. Another door, this time protected by an electric field, is ahead and it's on. A security camera up above spots Batman and a megaphone comes on:
"Come on in, Batman."
A guard says on the megaphone attached to the wall. The field disarms and Batman walks threw another open door way that the door has been ripped open.
Inside: it is a perfectly round oval shape tank with a catwalk that goes completely around it, but suspended high enough that Croc will have a hard time jumping his heavy mass up to it. The catwalk also has extra guard protection, such as the electric fence, but also barbwire at the top and bottom of the catwalk. Batman walks to one section on the West side of the oval, a huge junk of the catwalk is missing.
Batman: That takes care of how Croc got out, but who blew up the catwalk?
Oracle comes over the earpiece-
Oracle: I'd be asking who was able to get passed Arkham security in order to put the bomb in place.
Batman: Break into the security network in Arkham-
Oracle: Way ahead of you, Bruce. While I was looking for Croc, I decided to look in the archives to see where he could of went and then I saw this.
Batman get's a message in his cowl as a video screen like on a computer comes up as it shows a security feed from Arkham. A man wearing a dark green jumpsuit with "Gotham Sewage Control" on the back in black lettering is seen walking threw the corridors. It shows this in an overhead view, then it moves to a front view, but the man is about a good twelve feet away. Batman notices he is wearing a mouth mask and sunglasses, but there's nearly nothing of his face showing. He is also wearing a "GSC"-Gotham Sewage Control-hat to cover his head. He is wearing black gloves that covering three quarters of his arms. He get's to the Croc's Lair entrance and shows the guard identification cards, but doesn't speak to the guards, no small talk, no "weather talk." The guard, looking at the Sewage Tech, looks back at the ID, then him, and gives back the ID card. He takes it as the Croc's Lair door, the one that is now shredded open, opens up to the new guy.
It keeps switching cameras right up until he's in the oval room Batman is currently in. He get's to a part of the catwalk that has a trap door in place. The trap door comes swinging up on hydraulics as the barbwire goes down on some sort of hooks. The worker then climbs down to work on it as Oracle speaks again-
Oracle: Up until about four years ago is when the Gotham Sewage Control would work on this particular line. They would check to see if the water wasn't coming into Gotham City's current water system. Gotham City stopped funding this and now Arkham Asylum has it's own staff who checks on it now.
Batman: No wonder why you found it odd.
Batman zooms in on the person and from a closer glance he appears to setting a black suitcase under the catwalk itself.
Batman: Very odd how nobody noticed this as after they opened the trap door and lowered the barbwire, they would also lower a ladder, so he could get down there to test the water.
Oracle: And the fact that apparently none of the other staff even remembered that Arkham has it's own Maintenance staff check on it every three months.
Batman: Something isn't right.
Batman then remembers "Dr. von Haulstein", Dr. Leland's new protégé and how he didn't like the looks of her.
Batman: Oracle, I hate to ask, but I need something else from you-
Oracle: I'm here to help.
Batman: Try to search anything on Dr. Ilsa von Haupstein. I saw her in the Staff Lobby room. There was something odd about her.
Oracle get's offline as Batman walks back over to where the big gap is, where the explosion happened and starts to analyze the area. He turns on his Detective Mode as it would show footprints, there is a few, but as Batman's analysis shows they belong to mostly either the Arkham staff or Gotham Police and all background checks are not totally clean, but they don't deal with anything that would lead them to this. There's only one man who would do this, and Batman will find out.
Under Gotham, in catacombs of sewers and drainage pipes is where the BPRD have their headquarters; a makeshift one that is: a few tables with computers and equipment scattered on them with a few agents on them; including BPRD consultant Dr. Kate Corrigan among them and a few other unknown agents-interns. Hellboy, who is sitting at a table amongst himself, looking at to the lake of sewage next to him, the color of the sewage water is green, and something is seen...swimming in it.
Hellboy: So, this is the best Manning could do? A sewage tank? The last resort of dead fishies.
The thing that was swimming in the sewage is Abe, who sticks his head out and looks at Hellboy.
Abe: Red, this is the only thing Manning could do on such short notice and for the matter, the water is clean or else I wouldn't be swimming in it.
Abe then swims away from the crew and goes off to a side tunnel and begins to swim up-
(Few Minutes Later)
He is still swimming up the same tunnel, trying to get an idea of where Rasputin could be by being in the underground of Gotham. He senses something, and get's out of the water; he looks up and feels the wall. Just then he get's a vision of the future: Hellboy, a dead beast lying in front of Rasputin, but Rasputin has Hellboy's right hand of doom with his own right hand as if he cut it off Hellboy's hand and put it on his own. Then, it shows another figure, Batman, lying weak on the ground, barely alive, almost dead, with blood coming out of his mouth and nose; then a beast appears before Abe and Abe snaps out of the prediction and back into the present.
He thought he had heard a beast roar, but maybe it was the one he saw in his mind: the beast was a dark green, was very tall; taller than Hellboy it even seemed, and had a muscle mass on him that could mean strength of a thousand man. Then, he hears the roar again, but this time he knows it's real. A bang and the sounds of breaking can be heard not too far from Abe himself and then reality really sinks in when the wall seems to explode and out comes the beast Abe just predicted in the future.
It's Killer Croc and the future is NOW.
Hellboy vs. Croc
Abe is beyond frightened and beyond belief; the words of Hellboy echoing back to him, "The last resort of dead fishies." Abe then did the only thing he could think of; he jumped into the sewage water and began to swim and kick as hard as he could. He hears a giant splash in back of him which only means that Croc is following the prey. Abe looks everywhere he can for a place to hide or at least to buy him time to think of what next to do, but there's nothing, and-
Something grabs and for a minute he thinks he's dead, but he opens his eyes (and didn't even know he closed them) and see's Hellboy with a burning cigar in his mouth, one hand has Abe, the other has his giant pistol gun and it's aimed ahead. Hellboy put's Abe down onto the ground and he see's that they are not at the makeshift BRPD headquarters.
Hellboy: I got it from here, Abe.
He says it so easily like it's nothing to him.
Abe: Red, did you see that thing?
Hellboy: A lizard? A bird? I don't care, because he's going to get the same treatment as I give all of them.
Abe: Yeah, I'll go get the mop and back up while I'm at it.
Then, Killer Croc jumps out of the water and right in front of both of them.
Hellboy: Oh, crap.
Croc then bashes Hellboy hard with a backhand then sends Hellboy flying onto his side. Hellboy blinks a few times, but is only happy that he held the cigar in his mouth at least. He then get's up as Croc looks at him-
Killer Croc: Hellboy, I've heard a lot about you.
Hellboy: Really? How about you tell me who or I'll make you tell me.
Hellboy then points the pistol at Croc, but jumps into the air and crushes Hellboy under him and begins to tear at Hellboy's face.
(Back at Arkham)
Batman is still analyzing the foot prints, but can't find any according to his data that may belong to the "Sewage Worker".
Batman: This is odd.
Batman continues to look as Batman is being watched by a security camera; in a security room is where the same man that let Batman into Croc's Pit is as he has his feet on the table and drinking a soda. He appears to be watching a Basketball game on TV. Another security guard comes in-
"Hey man, what are you doing?"
"Batman's here, so I'm not really worried about anything right now and besides that with the mess we had earlier I haven't had a break yet."
"Well, at least watch him! He may have done a few good deeds for the city-"
"Good?" says the other security guard, still with his feet up, and a pizza in his hand about ready to bite from it. "More than good, you idiot."
"Whatever. I think he belongs in here with these...things. He's not normal."
The not so sure of Batman guard leaves the room as the other guard just sighs, "idiot" and goes back to eating. He then hears the door open again and rolls his eyes, obviously he doesn't like this guard.
"Hey man, in or out, it don't matter. Just stop bothering me-"
The man's voice is cut, because his throat is bleeding on the controls now from a very familiar dagger that cut his throat so fast he barely had time to even think of what it was; all he is now is dead. Kroenen stands there and watches Batman closely as Batman get's back to his feet and presses on his ear piece-
Batman: Oracle; I think I now know why Hellboy is here.
Oracle: Go on.
Batman: I don't think his targets are even human. More-
Oracle: Oh, well that's a relief(sarcastic). I knew it wasn't going to be that easy.
Batman: It never is; I'm going back to the lab to see-