I own neither Harry Potter nor Batman. Obviously.
The London night was filled with mist. Streets seemed to go on forever, shrouded by the wisps of vapour rising from the wet pavement. Downtown London never knew silence. This wasn't downtown, though. Here, on the outskirts of the city, almost everyone was asleep. The silence was only broken by the 'click-click' of a woman's heels as she made her way from her office to go home for the night.
Penelope Clearwater was a secretary for a Muggle payday loan operation. It was not the career she wanted, but even being Head Girl at Hogwarts wasn't enough to get her a job at the Ministry of Magic. She found out quickly that there were no positions in the magical world for her. Or for those like her.
Her boss had kept her extremely late tonight. He had demanded a full audit of all of the financial transactions for the past three years on account of a large sum going missing. He also wanted her to deposit a large amount of cash as soon as the banks opened in the morning. She wasn't comfortable carrying this much cash on her, especially this late at night, but her boss had insisted she take it with her and deposit it on her way to work in the morning.
Her boyfriend wanted her to find another job. That was easy for him to say, she thought as she listened to the echo of her heels clicking down the street. It was easy for him to find a job. He was a pure-blood. Even though his family wasn't well thought of in the wizarding world, they still didn't have any trouble finding good jobs. Muggleborns like her, not so much.
Her heart began to thud as she realized the click of her heels had been joined by the much heavier sounding clop of boots. She sped up and heard the clopping from behind speed up to keep pace. She didn't want to look behind her. She knew if she did, she'd see someone. If she saw someone, she'd break out into a run. If she did that, she'd probably fall over in these stupid heels and then who knew what would happen.
She knew she was panicking, but she couldn't help herself. The clops were nearly behind her. She glanced back and, just as she feared, saw the dark figure of a man behind her. She broke into a frantic run. Too late.
With a savage twist, a large hand had reached out and grabbed her purse, knocking her off balance. There was a flash of unimaginable pain as his other hand slammed into the side of her head. A terrible yank followed, ripping her purse off of her shoulder. She found herself sobbing on the ground watching the man run off into the mist with her bag.
Marcus Flint took a shortcut through an alley and listened for any signs of pursuit. He had kept his eyes on that Mudblood since he was still in school. He wished he could take the time to give her a more personal service, but he'd heard she'd be carrying a lot of Muggle money, and that had to take priority. Maybe next time.
The Mudblood would call the cops, he knew, but he'd be long gone before any of them got to her. Marcus didn't even think Aurors would come out for a Muggleborn. He stuffed the purse he had grabbed under his jacket and kept going. His hideout was up ahead, and his new partner was waiting.
"Easy money," Marcus said, counting a wad of fivers.
"What was she doing carrying all this on her?" Vincent Crabbe asked.
He was a new kid to the gang. He had barely graduated from Hogwarts and was lost now that their side had lost the war. His father had been captured at the Battle of Hogwarts where Potter had somehow killed the Dark Lord. His mother, trying to rebuild their lives, had gotten her son three jobs. He had lasted only months before being fired. He was used to getting whatever he wanted, and that's just not the way the world worked after You-Know-Who died. Eventually, his mother had decided enough was enough and turned him out to the streets. He was taken in by a group of low ranked Voldemort supporters. They couldn't imprison them all, but there was a stigmata against them that kept them from getting or keeping good jobs. Vincent hadn't even been pulling jobs for a full year yet.
"Really," Marcus said, "we were doing her a favour. A different gang would have killed her."
"You didn't have to hit her that hard," Vincent complained.
"Don't be gettin' soft on me," Marcus snapped. "You know the drill. You got to hit them hard enough that you can get away before they can yell out for the cops."
"Aren't you worried about the Bat?" Vincent asked with a tremor in his voice.
"The Bat?" Marcus said scornfully. "You've got to be kidding me."
"I've heard stories," Vincent said, his voice hushed. "They say he sometimes can fly like a bat, and sometimes he's a man dressed like a bat. Either way, if he catches you, that's it!"
"Gimme that!" Marcus said, snatching the fistful of five-pound notes Vincent was holding. "If you're going to be talking like that, then you don't get any of the loot."
Neither of them noticed a shadow fly over the full moon, briefly obscuring most of it with the shadowy form of wings.
"Come on, Marcus!" Vincent protested. "That's my share!"
"Then shut up about The Bat," Marcus said, tossing Vincent's share on the ground. The younger boy started scooping it up. "Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to take a leak."
Marcus moved behind some boxes.
"Besides," he said as he took unzipped himself, "it's embarrassing listening to you talking about a boogeyman. There is no Bat!"
There was no response.
"Did you hear me?" Marcus called out, finishing his business and zipping up. "I said there is no Bat!"
He turned back and found he was alone. The money Vincent was holding was scattered on the pavement.
"Crabbe?" Marcus hissed. There was no answer. He spun around to look behind him to find a heavily muscled man in a black rubber suit standing before him. On his chest was an oval design with the outline of a bat in the centre. A cape billowed behind him in the breeze. The most striking figure, however, was the mask that covered the upper half of his face.
"What the?" Marcus yelled. He fished his wand out, looking down to clear it as the front of the shaft got caught in his pocket. He looked back up to find the freak was gone.
He was breathing heavily. He twisted his body one way and the other trying to find something to cast a spell on.
"You should be careful, "a low voice growled in his ear. He turned to find the Bat behind him again. He pointed his wand and shouted "Avada Kedavra!" He missed. The damn thing was fast. Too fast. It twisted and shrank. Wings sprouted from it's back, and it flew away, disappearing in the mist.
Marcus heard a crack of apparition and turned around again to find the Bat standing behind him. He tried to point his wand at it again, but this time The Bat punched him in the stomach. It felt like a sledgehammer. Before he could recover, a fist knocked his head back with an uppercut.
Marcus lay sprawled out on top of the money he had stolen, unconscious.
Vincent woke up. He was hanging upside down with a rope tied around his left ankle. Looking down, he saw the street far below him. He screamed and tried to reach for the rope. He couldn't lift himself that far. Following the rope with his eyes, he saw it was attached to a pulley, then went over to the roof. Marcus lay on the roof with the Bat leaning over him. The black-clad monster stood up and turned to face Vincent. In just a few steps, the Bat was standing at the edge of the building. It reached out and grabbed the rope holding Vincent up. With a slash of his other wrist, a razor-sharp blade cut the rope where it was tied to a post. Vincent felt the rope bobbing up and down as his weight was transferred to the black-gloved fist of the Bat.
"Don't kill me!" Vincent yelled.
"I'm not going to kill you," the Bat said, his voice low and deep. "I want you to do me a favour. I want you to tell all your friends about me."
"Who are you?" Vincent screamed. The Bat leaned in till his face was only inches from Vincent's.
"I'm Batman," he said. Batman let go of the rope, and Vincent fell. He screamed all the way down. He was sure he was going to die, and he soiled himself when he landed in a dumpster. The garbage bags split open, and the foul contents broke his fall.
Police officers, responding to Penelope Clearwater's report of a mugging, witnessed his fall. They dragged him out of the dumpster.
"Commissioner Bones," one of the officers said as a middle-aged woman in a police dress uniform arrived on the scene. "It's a mess. He's babbling about some 'Batman' having killed his friend."
"Batman again?" Bones asked. She frequently worked with the Muggle police, and they all recognized her as the Commissioner of a special division that dealt with unusual events.
"Look!" another officer yelled, pointing up to the top of a building. Everyone turned and looked to where the officer was pointing. A dark figure stood perched on the edge of the roof. The bright light of a police cruiser was turned on and aimed up to reveal a man in a bat costume.
"Come down," Commissioner Bones yelled, fighting to be heard over the wind that was billowing the man's cape. "You're under arrest!"
The costumed freak paid her no attention at all. He spread his cape out like wings and leapt off of the roof. The officers scrambled back, trying to avoid being hit by a jumper. There was a whoosh overhead, and the thud of impact they were waiting for never came. Commissioner Bones could swear she heard the flapping of wings as the shadow of a bat disappeared into the night.
Harry Potter sat at his desk, watching several TV monitors. If a wizard saw him, the TVs would be the oddest thing about the scene. A Muggle would question why the desk was in a massive underground cave. Stalactites hung from the roof of the cavern several hundred feet above him. He had removed his cowl but was still dressed as Batman. The largest screen was showing a press conference where Commissioner Amelia Bones confidently reassure the Muggle population that there was no vigilante known as Batman roaming the streets of London.
He was also reading a report in the Daily Prophet where Director Amelia Bones reassured the Wizarding population that there was no rash of Muggle baiting by former followers of the recently defeated You-Know-Who. She speculated that a rogue animagus may be responsible for the recent violations of the statute of secrecy that had been reported. Still, she was adamant it was not a return of the Death Eaters.
Harry thought back to when this journey started for him. Throughout his early life, he had been bullied by his cousin and emotionally abused by his Aunt and Uncle. Then he had found out he was a wizard. A world of magic and wonder was promised to him. He found out quickly enough that the wizarding world was full of mean, prejudiced people who would withhold that world from those they deemed inferior.
When his Godfather had escaped from prison, Harry had found out that the justice system was corrupt. Sirius had been given no trial. It was made clear to Harry that no one was safe from the Ministry when he was placed on trial himself for a minor infraction of the reasonable restriction of underage magic. He had defended himself and his cousin against rogue dementors. Apparently, reasonable had a different definition for the Ministry.
Then, Sirius had died. Murdered by Bellatrix Lestrange. Harry had inherited all of the Black estate. Harry went on to win the war against Voldemort with the help of his best friends. The public loved him for it.
Harry, though, never forgot the injustice served to Sirius Black. He never forgot the abuse he would have never known if Sirius had been allowed to raise him. Something dark began to grow in his heart. Something dangerous. Something that Dumbledore would have feared had he still been alive to see it.
After the war was over, Harry found that he had also inherited the Lestrange vault. According to the goblins, Sirius was their closest relative, and since Harry inherited everything, he was now incredibly wealthy. He used some of the gold to rebuild Sirius's house. The Order of the Phoenix had either not known of the massive complex below 12 Grimmauld Place or just hadn't bothered to tell Harry about it. He had a secret entrance to the underground space built into the mansion, then placed it under a Fidelius Charm. Harry himself was the secret keeper.
Ron was incredibly jealous of the money, as Harry knew he would be. Harry tried to make things better by giving both Ron and Hermione large sums of gold. This turned Ron even further against him, as he didn't want to get rich through charity. They rarely spoke anymore.
Hermione had taken the money and sent herself to a journalism school. She had done very well for herself. Her work documenting a rebel uprising in Corto Maltese had been critically acclaimed.
Ron, trying to prove he was just as good, also turned to journalism. He mostly wrote Quiddich pieces but was trying to break into more serious stories. He had recently written a series of stories about the Batman rumours that had been circulating in both Muggle and Wizard newspapers.
"Master Harry," a deep voice said. Harry turned to find Kreacher the house-elf coming with a tray. A drink was balanced in the centre. Kreacher handed it to Harry and began examining the suit for any damage. The old house-elf had made it to Harry's specifications and was adamant about it being perfect.
"Did Master's suit fit properly?" Kreacher asked.
"Yes," Harry answered. "The tightness in the belt was much better this time."
"Good," Kreacher said. "Master should get changed. His party will be starting soon."
"Thanks again, Kreacher," Harry said. "I couldn't do this without you."
"Master would find a way," Kreacher said. "Master destroyed the locket. He is a great wizard."
"Thanks to you," Harry said, "I'm an even better Batman."
A/N - I honestly don't know where I'm going with this. This was the result of a question someone asked in a Facebook writing group. I was intrigued enough to write the beginning of a story. I might end it here, or I might continue on. This has been heavily modelled on the opening to the 1989 Batman movie. Harry Potter as Bruce Wayne/Batman, Ron Weasley as Alexander Knox, and Hermione Granger as Vicki Vale.