Part 1 – Predators Strike
"How do I look," asked Dick as he showed off his Halloween costume to Alfred, Bruce, and Selina. Dressed as his favorite comic book superhero, Dick found it somewhat ironic that he was the Gray Ghost for Halloween when every other night he was dressed as a real superhero.
"Like the hero himself," commented Alfred who was in turned dressed as a zombie butler. While the Englishman would never admit it, Dick knew that Alfred loved dressing up for Halloween because it reminded Alfred of his brief career as an actor.
"One would think you were a superhero," chuckled Selina as she lounged on a couch near Bruce.
"I still think we should have gone on patrol first," grumbled Bruce.
"Oh please Bruce, we've been working hard ever since we took out Sin Tzu, Hellhound, and the Dog Pound Boyz. I think the GCPD can handle Gotham without us for one night," replied Dick with a grin. "Besides you're just upset we didn't like your original costume idea for you and Selina."
"Hades and Persephone?" asked Selina rolling her green eyes. "Honestly Bruce, you can such a geek sometimes. Besides most if not all of people at Davenport's party wouldn't know what we were dressed as."
"Really? Because going as Dracula and his bride isn't corny?" responded Bruce gesturing to his outfit.
"Holy Bella Lugosi Bruce," said Dick which received groans from everyone. "You do realize that nearly everyone who knows that you're Batman is in this room, right?"
"I know but," Bruce started to say until Selina cut him off.
"Let's go, Bruce," said Selina. "It's one thing to be fashionably late, it's another to be LATE. Besides, Dick needs to pick up his own date for the Halloween party he's going to and Alfred has to get back in time for trick or treaters."
"Barbara isn't… we're not… I mean…" Dick stammered making Selina and Bruce laugh as they walked out the door. Even Alfred had a small smile from Dick's flustering.
"Come on Master Richard," Alfred ordered as he headed to the limo, motioning Dick to follow him. "We don't want to keep Miss Gordon waiting."
"Alright Alfred," said Dick. "Ace, you and Isis watch over the place until Alfred gets back." Ace barely lifted his head from his bed when Dick said that, and Isis, Selina's smoky Egyptian Mau, just stayed asleep on one of the chairs.
When Bruce and Selina arrived at the Davenport Mansion, the party was in full swing; making everyone turn to look at them as they entered. Paparazzi took pictures and some shouted out questions. As a valet parked Bruce's Lamborghini, the party's host walked out to meet them.
"Brucie!" yelled J. Devlin Davenport dressed as a king. "Or should I say Count Brucie. About time you got here, and you brought the lovely Selina Kyle."
"Hello Devlin," Bruce said extending his hand for Devlin to shake. Devlin ignored it and instead gave an uncomfortable Bruce a quick man-hug; then gave Selina air-kisses on each cheek.
"Selina, I got to know why is it that you'll be Bruce's victim but not mind," asked Devlin taking Selina's arm as he led her into the party, much to Bruce's annoyance.
"Well Devlin, it's because I prefer that brunettes over blondes," Selina replied, winking at Bruce and disengaging herself from Devlin.
"I see," Devlin said taking the hint Selina drop. That and the slight glare from Bruce. "Well if there is anything I can't get for either you two, just ask."
"How about telling us where the bar is?" asked Bruce. Devlin laughed and pointed.
"Over there," explained Devlin. "You can make your own drink or have a bartender make one for you."
"Thanks," Bruce said as he and Selina made their way to the bar, saying hello to various other party guests. Once they got there, Bruce made the two of them fake martinis.
"Bruce! Selina! Glad you too could make it," said a red-headed cowgirl.
"Kate!" cried Bruce as he gave his cousin a huge hug. "Glad you're here."
"Hey, no love for your best friend?" asked a mad scientist.
"Tommy! How've you been?" asked Bruce.
"Great Bruce, I would ask you what you've been doing," replied Tommy Elliot. "But Selina answers that question."
"Glad to see you too Tommy," said Selina as she sipped her drink. Bruce let out a small sigh. Tommy had been Bruce's friend since childhood, but Selina never truly liked him. While she could never put her finger on it, Selina always told Bruce that something off about Tommy.
"How's that ward of yours Bruce?" asked Tommy. "Got to be tough playing dad."
"Dick's a good kid so that helps," replied Bruce.
"Speaking of kids," said Kate Kane. "Did you hear that Batman has a kid? Called Robin?"
"We heard," replied Selina smiling behind her drink. "Batman has been taking him to work."
"Makes you wonder what kind of man brings a kid to fight criminals," said Tommy.
"Well at least Batman and Robin get to spend quality father-son time together busting heads," joked Bruce, then raised his glass. "Enough about the vigilantes. A toast to Devlin and his great Halloween party." The others raised their glasses in a toast.
"Anyway I glad to see you two at Devlin's party," said Kate Kane. "I know he can be a bit much. I thought you would you would use Dick as an excuse to not come."
"Just because Bruce is a parent doesn't mean he can't have a life as well," explained another guest. Bruce, Selina, Tommy and Kate turned in surprised when they recognized the speaker's voice. While all were shocked, Kate stiffened when she saw the man's costume.
"Roland Daggett," growled Bruce. Roland just smiled, dressed as Nazi SS officer, seemed to enjoy everyone's distaste over his attire. Daggett was one of Gotham's most corrupt businessmen and his company was one of Wayne Industries biggest rivals.
"Don't you think your costume is a bit inappropriate, Roland?" hissed Kate. "But then again, it does really show people who you really are."
"Now Miss Kane," tutted Daggett. "It's Halloween, a time to dress up as something scary. And what's scarier than something from human history?"
"What the fuck do you want Daggett?" snarled Tommy.
"Doc Elliot, I'm surprised you're still sober," said Daggett. "I just wanted to introduce you and Bruce to my new lawyers. Ladies and gentlemen meet Warren Lawford, Gunther Hardwicke, and Armand Lydecker, partners at Lawford, Hardwicke, and Lydecker.
The office was quiet as the guard made his rounds at Marco's Rare Antiques. Three masked teens stood outside the back, each wearing an animal costume. One dressed as a vulture attached a smartphone to the electronic lock on the store. The other's held their breath until the red light on the lock turned green.
"Good job Vulture," whispered one dressed as a fox. "Let's go, the best stuff is in the safe and there's only one fat, old guard here." The three silently ran to the safe, where the third member dressed as a shark, pulled out a drill from the bag he was carrying. As he started drilling, the other three could hear footsteps of the guard.
"Hey! Who's there?" called the guard as he trotted toward the safe. As he came near. Fox broke a vase over the man's head.
"Jesus Fox," said Vulture. "Did you have to hit the poor man so hard?"
"Oh shut up Vulture," snapped Fox. "It's a shame that this antique vase had to be destroyed. But then, Ming was such a lame dynasty. Shark! Are you done yet?"
"Almost, almost… done!" replied Shark putting away the drill and opening the safe. Inside was dozens of gold and silver coins plus jewelry.
"Good, grab everything," ordered Fox. "Vulture grab what's in the cash register. I'll take care of the guard." Fox began to tie the man up as Shark and Vulture filled trick or treat bags with loot.
"Not a bad haul," said Shark admiring the swag in his bag."
"It's alright," replied Vulture. "The stuff is worth ten times what was in the register." The guard groaned as he regained consciousness. Once awake, the man glared at the three crooks.
"Here," said Fox in a condescending way, throwing a wad of money in the guard's lap. "That's what, three? Four months worth of your paycheck? Why don't you take that and forget you saw us?" The guard spat Fox.
"Fuck you punk," snarled the guard. "Unlike you three lowlifes, I have this thing called honor. I would try to explain it, but to you little shitheads, it's just a word."
"Why you fucking…" Fox raged, then kicked the guard in the face as hard as he could. Blood and a few teeth came out of the man's mouth. "I thought everyone one in Gotham had a price. You need to remember your place! Under my fucking boot!" Fox began stomping on the guard's face, breaking his nose and jaw.
"Fucking hell Fox! Chill!" yelled Vulture as he and Shark pulled Fox off the guard. "He isn't worth killing."
"Yeah," Shark chuckled nervously. "Come on, we need to get back to the party."
"Fine," Fox panted as he regained his breath. "Let's get out of here."