Disclaimer: I DO NOT in any form or fashion OWN any of these characters ALL CREDIT goes to DC. DC owns everything I repeat I do not own these characters. I am not making any money of this story I can promise you. So please do not sue me I ask again please do not sue me.
Hey readers it's me Nomad88 back with the final…..Final chapter in Batman Beyond: Volume 1. As I stated in the last chapter it has been a wild and fun ride but now its time for it to come to a close. All of the storylines have been closed with a few hanging threads that were deliberately left open, but anyway that's enough of me talking…I now present to you…my loyal readers the final chapter, READ, REVIEW( A writer's Main source of Motivation) and of course ENJOY!
Chapter 25: Epilogue: A Funeral and a New Era Begins
Saturday- TV: 7:00 am
"Good Morning Neo-Gotham City I'm Tom Monroe and with me always is my co-host Kim Brooms. Kim
Kim: Thanks Tom. We are now heading into the 5th day of what we here at the news station are calling the Battle for Gotham. As many of you know just 5 days ago the police were in a Battle Royale against the extreme vigilantes known as the Knightbreed. The battle was vicious and bloody and left many wounded or dead. Tom.
Tom: That's right Gothamnites as you can see on your screen now this was the battle of the century and as our dedicated officers trying their best to subdue the crazed individuals and in a sudden surprise the Jokerz arrived on the scene to cause more Mayhem as they released some sort of toxic gas upon the fighters. Our officers would have died if it wasn't for the timely intervention of Batman. Kim
Kim: It seems the mysterious hero arrived to administer an antidote to the gas distributed by the Jokerz….we tried to get a statement from Commissioner Gordon about the whole affair but again the Commissioner was silent on the matter.
Tom: Our next top story is the explosion that rocked the Neo-Gotham Convention Center…so far the explosion has been shrouded in mystery with some saying it was a gas leak and others saying it was a military air strike but more on that later. Kim
Kim: Our next top story is one that brings great sadness to this fair city and that is the death of Bruce Wayne….
McGinnis Household- 7:05 am
Terry McGinnis stood in front of the mirror in his bathroom making the final adjustments to the black tie that belonged to his funeral suit. He pulled the tie upwards and positioned it in the center and then took a deep breath and then slowly released the air from his lungs. The young man stared at himself in the mirror for the longest and he studied the sad look upon his face. It had been a few days since the death of his mentor Bruce Wayne and the weight of his death was just now starting to sink in, the mysterious old man that he had met by chance and transformed his life forever was dead. The man that had given him, some punk kid a purpose…a calling, was dead…murdered by Derek Powers and his assassin Inque. At that thought Terry leaned forward onto the sink and he released another sigh, his expression turned from a sad one to a hard glare.
'Damn' he thought to himself, 'Powers and Inque' he continued before letting his grip tighten on the edge. In the past couple of days he had been searching for Powers and Inque but they both were in the wind, but he wasn't too worried about Powers because he knew that Neo-Gotham was his hometown, he wouldn't be going too far and justice would be served to him very soon. Terry's true worry though was Inque, according to Damian she was an international assassin meaning that by now she could be anywhere in the world and there was no telling if she would ever re-surface again and that was something that didn't sit well with him. The fact that she thinks she can just kill and runaway, she was sorely mistaken if she thought that she could participate in the killing of Bruce Wayne and get away with it.
'I don't care how long it takes Inque…..I will find you' he thought sternly to himself.
Terry was broken from his musings by the knock at the door.
"Who is it?" he asked turning to the door.
"It's your mother"
Terry pushed off of the sink and opened the door allowing his mother Mary McGinnis to enter and she was dressed in a black funeral dress of her own.
"Are you okay Terry?" she asked concern evident in her voice.
"Yeah Mom I'm fine" he replied in a low tone.
"Terry..." she started.
"Really, I'm fine mom" he interrupted putting on a reassuring smile. Mary studied her son's face and the smile that he gave her but she knew that he was hurting inside. In the few months that he had been working for Bruce Wayne she had noticed a significant change in his personality. He was more focused, more responsible, he had been going to school everyday and he had been staying out of trouble; not once had any trouble out of him which is very surprising seeing as how she knew that her son was a magnet for trouble. She had Bruce Wayne to thank for that, it would seem that being around him had influenced Terry for the better, so it saddened her that this man….this fatherly figure that Terry needed had been taken away from him just like Warren had been taken away. Mary bit her lip and then smiled at her emotionally tough son, she gently grabbed his head and pulled him towards her and kissed him on the forehead.
"Come on, we're going to be late" she said turning around and leaving the bathroom with Terry right behind her.
"You know Mom you and Matt don't have to go with me"
"I know we don't have to Terry but we want to" she said to him.
"Speak for yourself Mom" chimed Matt McGinnis from the couch; he too was wearing his own funeral suit.
"Hush Matthew" Marry stated rubbing his hair a bit "Terry Mr. Wayne was very nice to us….he gave you a job and got you into a good College, it would be a crime if we didn't go to his funeral"
Terry released a sigh and rubbed the back of his neck.
"Alright." He replied.
Mary nodded her head and then grabbed her purse that was on the edge of the couch, once she had her purse she began to walk to the front door.
"Come on, I don't want to be late" said Marry exiting the modest apartment.
Matt got off of the couch and hurried after his mother leaving Terry alone in the apartment. Terry stood still in his spot for a long moment mentally preparing himself for the funeral of his mentor. Once he gathered his wits he held his head high and proceeded out of the apartment.
Across Town- Young Household- Same Time
Barbara Gordon-Young zipped up her black funeral dress and then looked at herself in the medium sized vanity mirror within the room that she shared with her husband Mayor Sam Young. Barbara stared at her reflection for a minute before lowering her head and exhaling.
"Bruce" she whispered. Her mind went to the day that she got the call that he had died, Damian had called her and informed her of his death and she remembered how she almost crashed her car at the sudden surprising news. At first she thought this was some type of joke or mistake or that he was wrong but then she remembered who she was talking to…very rarely did Damian ever joke nor did he ever make a mistake and this was something she doubted very seriously that he would be wrong about…. his father being dead.
After a few minutes of going back and forth Damian had told her where she could find him and she wasted no time in going to see him but she wasn't prepared for what she saw.
Flashback- Tuesday- Slums- Dr. Thompkins Office- 1:35am
Barbara barged though the doors and into the office of a woman that she had known for years; her friend Dr. Leslie Thompkins. She looked around a second but she didn't have to look very long before Carolyn walked into the room.
"Hi Carolyn. Where is your mother?" she asked quickly.
"IN HERE BARBARA!" a voice called out. Barbara heard the call and her eyes landed upon an open door with a set of stairs leading downward, she started for the stairs but she was stopped by Carolyn.
"Wait, you can't go in there yet."
"I have to inoculate you first, we got a patient whose highly radioactive" Carolyn answered reaching into her white coat and pulling out a fresh syringe and a vial of liquid. Barbara patiently waited as Carolyn filled the syringe and then injected her with the liquid.
"Thank you Carolyn" Barbara said before passing by her and going down the steps.
Basement- Examination Room
Barbara entered the cool basement to see Leslie at the edge of a slab like table and on the slab was the dead body of Bruce Wayne. He had been stripped of his clothes and appeared to be getting prepared for an autopsy. Barbara took a few shaky steps forward as her eyes were locked upon his dead form. Her eyes roamed over the bruises and burns that adorned his body and she knew what Damian had told her about him going out as Batman and taking on Powers was true. Barbara bit her lip as she reached out and gently touched his face that was starting to grow cold.
"You're not dreaming Barbara" came Leslie's voice from the side.
Barbara turned her head and eyed the woman in the wheelchair.
"Are you sure…because this damn sure feels like one?"
"I've been trying to wake myself up for the past 15 minutes" Leslie replied with a small smile "But he is dead"
"…it was bound to happen right…we all die one day" Barbara said softly while removing her hand from his cold face.
"True….but the day we die was always the day before him…..not after" Leslie added.
Barbara nodded her head at the statement; despite Bruce's ripe old age of 82 she had no doubt in her mind that he would outlive her. He would always be here in Gotham but now that notion, that thought was shattered. A surreal feeling…much like the feeling that Leslie and Terry had felt surrounded her as well.
'Is….he is. He's really dead' she thought slowly to herself taking a step back and turning away from his motionless body.
"How…..How did he die?" Barbara asked eyes away from Bruce and Leslie.
"..…He suffered a massive heart attack, much like the heart attack I told him about several years ago. I won't know the full damage until we…..do an autopsy. Carolyn is getting everything ready right now"
Barbara still in a surreal like state rubbed her hand down her face and nodded her head signifying that she understood what was being said to her. The hardened woman turned her head once more and cast another glance at the man she had known for decades.
"Those radiation burns…..can you do anything with them?"
"Like I told Damian, Carolyn and I will fix him up as best as we can, I've been prepared for something like this for a few years now. Bruce being who is can't simply just die and be buried….people will want to see him"
"Which reminds me…..I'm going to have to call Damian again"
"So we can iron out the detail on exactly how we're going to break the news to the public that Bruce Wayne is dead. Look's like this night has just gotten that much longer. Leslie…as soon as you finish…..give me a call"
"First call I make" Leslie replied.
Barbara nodded her head again and then swiftly turned and exited the exam room passing by Carolyn on her way out.
Present- Young Household
Barbara shook herself from the memory and allowed her focus to return to her reflection in the mirror. In the days that was led up to the funeral she had discussed the details with Damian and Terry on what they were going to say and they had all decided on a plausible explanation that wouldn't arouse too much suspicion and scare Derek Powers away, the person that they had all agreed that they would take down and they would take him down hard.
Once the details were settled and the days rolled by and the reality of the situation started to sink in Barbara found herself feeling sad and depressed. While she and Bruce had had their difference over the years and there was bitterness surrounding everything that had happened during her cape cowl days she still held a special place for him in her heart. He was a very big part of her life and for him to die and to die the way he did only added to her sadness. As she continued to stare at herself and think about Bruce she could feel tears beginning to well up within her eyes and she quickly put her hands to her eyes.
'Don't cry…don't you dare cry, he wouldn't like it if you cried' she thought to herself.
"Barb….you ready….to go" came the voice of her husband Sam Young as he entered their bedroom. He was in his funeral clothes as well and that was only because Bruce being one of Gotham's elite and he being the mayor of Neo-Gotham had no choice but to make an appearance to keep those that backed him happy…namely the other Gotham elites. The mayor of Neo-Gotham looked at his wife's reflection in the vanity mirror and he could see the sad expression.
"Hey are you okay?" he asked walking to her and placing his comforting hands on her shoulders.
"I'm fine…I-I just hate funerals" she replied lamely trying to dry her eyes without letting her mascara run. Sam studied her face before he scrunched his eyes up a bit.
"…..Barb you do know I know when you're lying right"
Barbara didn't answer him she just continued to look at herself in the mirror and force the tears in her eyes to recede. Sam looked at his wife patiently waiting for her to answer and he could see several emotions playing across her face and he could see her internally debating whether or not she wanted to reveal the reason for her sadness. After a few more moments she finally answered.
"Yes, I know you know when I'm lying. I'm sad because…..I knew Bruce Wayne"
"You knew him?" Sam questioned in shock "How…and did you know him well?"
"I knew him very well…..about as well as I know you or as well as you know me" she answered softly, "I was in love with him once"
Sam's eyes widened considerably at the sudden and honest news from his wife, to say that he was surprised would be a complete understatement.
"You…..and Bruce Wayne, and you were in love with him…..did he love you back…better yet how long ago was this? I thought I knew about all of your old loves, why are you telling me this right now?" he asked.
Barbara listened to each and everyone one of his questions and she turned around to face him.
"Because you asked." She stated "Sam, I know that being married to me means putting up with my…mysteriousness and you've done it…been doing it for years and I thank you for that, I thank you for not pressuring me to….reveal certain things about myself until I was ready. I remember a few weeks ago you told me that you would always be here…waiting until I was ready, well, I'm ready. I'm ready to tell you about my past, a large part of my past that I've kept hidden and locked away. So, tonight after you've given your speech to the public….we're going to have a long overdue talk" she said to him.
Sam could do nothing but nod his head slowly, he had been waiting for this for a long time, to know her mysterious past and finally his patience was going to pay off. Barbara leaned in and gave him a quick kiss on the lips.
"I'll be in the car" she said before passing him and heading out of their bedroom.
Wayne Manor- Same Time
Yinn slowly let his eyes part and allowed his eyes to come into focus on the bright ray of sunshine that filtered in through the window he was meditating in front of within the living room of Wayne Manor.
The old soul let a small smile grace his lips as he looked at the sun.
'The start of new day' he thought in his mind. Yinn turned his head as he heard the soft footsteps of his friend/employer/partner Damian Wayne; he saw that the younger man was dressed black funeral attire and talking to himself while walking towards the entrance to the bat-cave. Yinn rose to his feet and proceed to follow after him.
"I know this is a shock but rest assured in the coming weeks you all will get to know me and my plans." Damian said to himself as he walked down the steps and into the batcave. He looked up and made his way over to the bat-computer and he turned the machine on, "This may come as a shock but I can assure you that…..No." he stated letting out a sigh while waiting for the computer to boot up.
"Problem Master Wayne?" Yinn asked. Damian turned to see him quickly coming down the steps.
"Several" Damian replied
"Why don't you start with the most pressing problem and maybe I can help you" said Yinn.
"My speech" Damian answered.
"Speech? Speech for what?"
Damian heaved a sigh and turned to fully face his friend; he bit his lip and then heaved another sigh. He knew Yinn well enough to know that he wasn't going to like what he was about to tell him.
"I think it's time for Damian Wayne to receive some attention from the public eye" he stated seriously looking Yinn in the eyes.
"…are you insane?" Yinn asked with wide eyes.
"I knew you would say that but if we're going to stay we need to give the city a reason to keep this mansion in-tact, not only that but I'm taking my father's company out of the grasp of that rat bastard Powers. I hacked into the Wayne-Powers database and I read over the contract that my father signed with him. If he should die then Powers would gain total control over the company and all of my father's shares since he doesn't have any legal heirs."
"Wait…you aren't legally bound already?"
"No, my birth isn't something that Bruce could explain to the public…or show any legal documentation and any time I was in public back in the day they really didn't care about me…just Bruce and his philandering ways"
"What about Master Grayson isn't he the next to inherit…?" Yinn started then stopped because of Damian shaking his head.
"No, Dick…forged his own way and got his own millions when he took over Haley's Circus. He took himself out of Bruce's shadow and nullified any chance of receiving anything."
"So how are you going to prove that you're Bruce's heir?"
"One of the many things that Amanda Waller and I went over in Metropolis." Damian replied.
"What else did the two of you talk about?" Yinn asked shifting in his spot slightly.
Damian folding his arms across his chest and then leaned on the bat-computer.
"The first thing we talked about was my father's death"
Flashback- Days Ago- Metropolis- 2:45 am- Amanda Waller's Apartment
Damian lifted the window to the modest apartment and he deftly slipped inside the dark room.
Damian's feet hit the white carpet and it was only a second later that he heard the unmistakable sound of a shotgun being cocked. His head whipped to the left to see a very old and very plump Amanda Waller standing at the ready.
"Please move so I can blow you to hell" Amanda stated in a threatening tone.
"Well that's not a very nice way to treat an old…employee" Damian replied.
"I know that voice….Lights" she stated.
The lights in the apartment switched on allowing the two to see each other clearly.
A few tense seconds passed before Amanda lowered her shotgun and released a breath she had been holding.
"Do you want Coffee?" she asked while slowly shuffling her old feet towards her kitchenette while placing her shotgun on the counter.
"No, I don't want Coffee" Damian replied following behind her.
"What do you want then Damian, it has to be something important…seeing as how I haven't seen you in almost a decade." She said grabbing the coffee pot and filling it with water. Damian eyed a stool next to the counter and he pulled it out a sat down and he stared at the older woman in front of him.
"What I want is answers."
Amanda turned on her stove and set the pot on one of the eyes; she then turned around and faced the younger man.
"Answers to what?" she asked.
"Derek Powers" he replied.
Amanda's eyes widen for a second and then they returned to normal, she swallowed hard for a second and then folded her arms across her chest.
"Why do you want to know about Derek Powers?"
"Roughly 4 hours ago he and an international assassin by the name of Inque murdered my father"
"WHAT!" Amanda exclaimed truly shocked by the information just presented to her, for a full second Amanda was completely flabbergasted….shocked, which is a hard concept for her because she is a woman who has seen and heard every single shocking thing one person could hear in a lifetime.
"I didn't stutter Waller" Damian responded.
"I can understand Inque…I've heard of her and her, brutal efficiency but Powers. Even though Bruce is as old as I am I would think he could handle someone like Derek Powers"
"Maybe if Powers was still human instead of a Meta…..but don't worry the old man gave as good as he got"
"What do you mean instead of a Meta?" Amanda questioned.
"Derek Powers was helping Kobra; he was using Wayne-Powers resources to create a very potent Nerve Gas. The delivery deal didn't go down as planned and he was exposed to the nerve gas, instead of dying though he managed to reverse the effects using intense radiation; a side effect the 'cure' is that he's able to generate and emit radiation from his body"
"Sounds like Bruce had his hands full. So what do you want to know about Powers?"
"Why wasn't he detained when he made that blatant lie about working with the government against Kobra?"
Amanda released a sigh and shook her head.
"I knew that would come back to bite me in the ass." She said under her breath.
"Powers is a threat that I'm going to take down but I need to know how high up in government his power reaches." Damian stated
"I've been out the game for a while but I know for a fact that the new director of things wouldn't work with Powers to save her life. He's too slimly for her"
"But not for you" Damian said slowly while narrowing her eyes. He saw her shift a bit in her spot and that told him a lot…her body language was telling him she was about to reveal something…a long hidden secret.
"Powers probably got away with saying that because he mostly likely cashed in a one time no questions asked favor." She replied to him.
"And what the hell is a no questions asked favor?"
"Exactly how it sounds; myself and few key people who are still active owe him 1 single favor for something that he helped us with a long time ago."
"….Let it go Damian, it's a can of worms you do not want to open" Amanda warned. Damian shot up from his seat and stormed over to her, his 6'3 height towering over her 5'3, but she stared up at him unafraid.
"He murdered my father I'm not letting anything go, now tell me."
"I'm not going to outright tell you, why don't you put those detective skills to good use and find out for yourself. Beside you're not here for that, I answered your question. Powers doesn't have any friend in government at least none that I know about so he's all yours to take down"
Damian grinded his teeth together in slight anger but he could tell from the look on her face that she wasn't going to tell him anything, one of the major pains in working with Amanda Waller, like his father she was a Fort Knox of secrets.
"Is that all Damian…or is there something else?" Amanda asked after a long minute. Damian sucked in a breath and turned and backed away from her.
"Yeah there is something else…you owe me" he stated glancing over his shoulder.
"I know. So, is this the part where you cash in your favor?"
"What do you want?"
"To be alive" he stated cryptically while turning around and staring at her.
About an Hour Later
"I'll do what I can to forge you some birth certificates." said Amanda setting her cup of tea down on the counter.
"See that you do...and I need a rush job this one Waller. Time is of the essence." Damian replied, moving away from the counter and heading towards the window.
"Damian!" Waller called out.
Damian stopped in his tracks and turned to her.
"It goes against my better judgment but…..Project Batman Beyond"
Damian's eyes widen at the name and then they narrowed.
"What is that?"
"You're the detective…..figure it out, once you do…..comeback and see me" she said with a small smirk.
Damian pursed his lips into a thin line and then turned back to the window; he stepped onto the seal and then jumped out.
"Project Batman Beyond?" Yinn repeated with intrigue "If that's what Powers worked with this Amanda Waller on then it can't be anything good"
"My speech is problem number 1…..that right there is Problem number 2"
"What's problem number 3?"
BRING! BRING! Went the sound of the bat-computer's phone system going off; Damian released a sigh and then turned around to the computer.
"Problem number 3….is Rose" he said before hitting a button.
The computer screen fizzled for a second before an image of Rose Wilson aka Ravager pulled up on the screen. Rose like Barbara and Damian had only aged gracefully, she was in her late 40s and roughly the same age as Damian, she still had her long white hair but if you looked closely a few strands were turning gray. She still had the fair skin complexion with minimal to hardly any wrinkles, the same vibrant blue eyes only she didn't have a white eye patch covering her left eye, she had long ago gotten a cybernetic replace for the eye that was taken from her by her father.
"DAMIAN WHAT THE FUCK!" she shouted angrily.
"Good Morning Ms. Rose it's nice to see you again" Yinn interrupted in a cheerful tone.
"IT'S JUST ROSE! AND HI YINN!" she shouted turning to him briefly before turning back to Damian.
"What do you want Rose I'm busy" he replied in a nonchalant tone.
"WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED TO MY MONEY!"
"You mean our money" he countered.
"I MEAN MY MONEY!"
"Look I had to liquidate the account alright…I had to use it for…."
"WHY MY MONEY WHY DIDN"T YOU USE YOUR OWN FUCKING MONEY!" she roared.
"It's our money, plural and I couldn't use my money because my money is tied up paying those people to find your goddamn father and brothers, not to mention funding the fight against Leviathan! KOBRA! AND MY FUCKING MOTHER SO YOU'LL JUST HAVE TO TAKE ONE FOR THE TEAM ALRIGHT!" he shouted, angrily slamming his palms down onto the computer.
Damian and Rose stared at each other with angry expressions for a long minute, neither saying anything, Yinn stood to the side shaking his at the two of them.
'Children…both of them' he thought.
"Fine….you don't have to yell Damian" Rose finally said folding her arms across her chest, "Next time, pick up the fucking phone before you do something like that, do you have any idea how embarrassing it is for your daughter to see your card being cut up because of insufficient funds"
"I'm sure your pride will recover…as will the account in a few days" He replied dryly "How is Madeline?"
"Fine, her training is going well…although she misses her father…. and her nanny"
"I'm not a nanny" Yinn chimed in seriously.
"Could've fooled me" Rose threw back, "When are you coming back Damian, you've been gone longer than usual"
Damian hung his head for a second before looking back up at her.
"I'm not coming back"
"I'm staying here in Gotham"
Rose studied him for a moment pursing her lips into a thin line before replying.
"Does this sudden want have anything to do with your father dying?" she asked but already knew the answer.
"Damian. You have responsibilities here…your mother is starting to make moves and…"
"I know; which is why I'm going to alert her to my presence here in Gotham. If she knows I'm here she'll coming running."
"You're going to turn that city into a War-zone"
"I'll have some help to keep her at bay as well as Kobra."
"So you're going to fight your mother and Kobra…in Gotham…...you're going need my help"
"No, you stay where you are."
"Rose I'm telling you to…"
"Since when did I start taking orders from you? Maybe if we were married I would consider what you have to say"
"You just couldn't resist throwing that in there." He said shaking his head while letting a small smile grace his lips.
Rose only smirked and then her smirked turned in smile too.
"It'll take me some time to get in contact with Zoë and Christian….I'm sure they'll want to know what's going on"
"Take you're time and tell each of them that I'll be contacting them as well. My father's death has made me have to adjust our whole operation but everything will be back to normal…however, I think it's time to change our banner."
"Into a Bat I presume."
Damian stared at her before reaching towards a button on the console.
"See you soon Rose and tell Madeline…..I Love her" he said before ending the call.
Damian looked at the blank screen and he smiled again.
"So, I guess pretty soon the whole Wayne Family is going to be here. I must say I've missed Zoë and Christian I haven't seen them in a whole year."
"Yeah….It'll be nice to see them again." Damian replied turning to him, "I need you do me a favor"
"Anything" said Yinn.
Damian jerked his head over to the Batmobile; Yinn turned his head to the vehicle and that's when his eyes landed on something attached to the end of the vehicle.
"What is that?"
"A gift for NGCPD that I need you to deliver…along with this letter." Said Damian while reaching into his back pocket and removing a sealed envelope with the letter inside. Yinn took the envelope and then eyed the batmobile again.
"You want me to do this right now?"
"Yes." Damian stated pushing away from the Bat-computer and walking towards the stairs "The funeral is getting ready to start….I…I have to…."
"Go on Damian…I'll take care of it" said Yinn nodding his head. Damian nodded his head back to him and then proceeded up the stairs and then out of the Bat-Cave.
Across Town- 7:25 am: Neo Gotham Hospital
A bandaged and solemn looking Brian Millwood entered the busy hospital and made his way to the front desk.
"Good Morning how may I help you?" asked the nurse at the front desk.
"I'm looking for an Evan Greene"
The nurse looked down towards her sign in sheet and she scanned the document for a long second until her eyes lit up upon seeing the name.
"Yes, he is in room 515"
"May I see him?" Brian asked.
"Yes just sign your name" she answered pointing to the sheet next to his hand. Brain picked up a pen and then signed his name. Once he did that he moved away from the desk and began to walk down the hall.
Brian Millwood was a young man that was completely lost. Since he enacted his retribution against Terminal for some reason the satisfaction that he had felt had vanished and in its place was a feeling of emptiness that he just couldn't explain. He thought at this point in time with Terminal gone he would be the happiest person on earth instead of the most depressed. Brian felt as if he was alone in the world. The young man made his way to the elevator and pressed the up button.
DING! Went the sound of the elevator arriving; he stepped onto the elevator and watched as the doors closed.
The elevator doors opened and Brian stepped off and continued down another hallway his eyes searching for the room. It didn't take him long to find the room, he came to a stop and shakily gripped the door handle. Taking a deep breath Brian opened the door and went inside.
Inside the Room
Brian entered the room and the first thing that he saw was the unconscious form of his best friend Evan Greene. Evan was motionless, still, almost as if he was dead but the soft beeping of the heart monitor proved that he was alive. Brian's mood worsened as he took each step towards his best friend's bed.
"Ev" he whispered. Brian stopped at the foot of the bed; he looked down at the bed and at the chart that was hooked on the end. Brian grabbed the chart and he began to read.
'Patient stable…significant blood loss…..slipped into a Coma!?'
Brian's head shot up from the chart and looked at the motionless Evan again; he dropped the chart and went towards his friends head.
"Evan…..wake up man…..WAKE UP!" Brian shouted but his shouts did nothing to rouse his comatose best friend. Brian's face fell even more as he continued to stare at Evan, 'This…..this is my fault. It's all my fault, if I hadn't….'
His hands went to his face and he rubbed his eyes in frustration, he gritted his teeth in anger because all in one fell swoop his life had come crashing down. His parents were dead, his sister and Aunt had both left town on his command and he didn't know where they had gone which was for the better because he had this nagging feeling that he was being watched and his family had been through enough death so he wanted to stay his distance, the same thing went for his girlfriend Max. He had wanted to go to her…to confide in her but his training with the Knightbreed told him that he was being followed so he didn't want to endanger her either so he stayed away. Brian was only visiting Evan because he knew that the Knightbreed or the remaining members were the ones that were following him and they wouldn't injure or hurt Evan because they didn't know that Evan had helped him. In their eyes Evan was still part of their brotherhood while he….was an outcast…a traitor.
Brian took his hands away from his eyes and once again looked at Evan, he had his revenge but he had nothing else…..a true example of a Pyrrhic victory. Brian hung his head low and slowly started for the door. He reached the door and grabbed the handle.
"I'm sorry that I caused you to end up this way Evan….I truly am" he said in a whisper; with a turn of the knob the door opened and Brian swiftly exited the room.
Outside the Hospital
Brian exited the hospital and he pulled his jacket a bit closer to his body to shield himself from the cold wind, the winter season was heading to Gotham. The lost young man turned his head to the left and to the right and that when he spotted a payphone. Rubbing his hands together creating a bit of friction heat he made his way over to the phone.
Across the Street
Standing across from the hospital in inconspicuous clothing….blue jeans, black shirt, black jacket and black shades was the Queen of the Knightbreed…..Helena Bertinelli aka the Huntress. The beautiful and deadly woman stood still in her spot glaring a death glare at her target, the traitorous Brian Millwood.
Helena bared her teeth a bit at the sight of him; she had been following him for the past couple of days waiting and plotting to exact her revenge; because of Brian and his betraying of the brotherhood half her vigilantes were dead and the other half were scattering to the winds. Since the incident a few days ago anyone who was associated with the Knightbreed or with the Jokerz were considered to be public enemies and were to be apprehended or shot on sight. Helena gripped her fist tightly at that thought but the true source of her anger at Brian was of his murder of her little sister Charlotte-Gage-Radcliff better known as Misfit. She remembered how Misfit, with her dying breath manage to reveal to her the betrayal done by Brian and that he was the one that stabbed her.
'You will be avenged' she thought darkly to herself. Helena had been planning on killing Brian days ago but she knew that he was cunning and that Vanquish had done a very good job of training him, he kept moving around and was always alert. She didn't want to risk an open fight, no, she simply wanted to walk up behind him and stab him in the heart…just like he stabbed Misfit.
Helena walked forward brushing past a middle aged man and started across the street.
Brian took the phone off of the hook and then he reached in his pocket and removed a yellow card. He waved the card in front of a scanning pad and after he did that the phone beeped and he began to dial a set of numbers.
RING! RING! RING! CLICK!
"Hello you've read Max's phone you know what to do"
Brian heard the message beep and he let out a sigh.
"Hi Max…it's me."
Helena crossed the street and she stood at the end of the block eyes locked on Brian back as he was talking on the payphone.
"I….I know I said that I would see you again but, I can't. It's not safe." He began then stopped. He released a tired sigh and rubbed his tired eyes for a second before he started talking again.
"Max, I can't begin to describe how sorry I am for not be able to do this in person…I-I want to it's just that…..I can not put you in danger, the people closest to me have already been through enough and…I just want you to be safe; which means that….we can't be together."
Helena breathed steadily as she approached her enemy, she blocked out the sounds of the busy street around her and the people that passed her by. She was completely focused, the most focused that she had ever been in her life.
"Max, I know you're going to be upset…maybe even hate me and you're going to disagree with me but right now…..right now is not the best time for us…..or rather for me. They are watching me…the Knightbreed or what's left of them…I know they are, they know I betrayed them for my sister and they'll be looking for me…possibly to kill. Heh….I've made a complete mess of my life all in the pursuit of something that I'd thought would make me happy….but when I finally got it, all I received was….nothing. All I have now is this deep hole of nothingness in my heart and I don't even think that your love would be enough to fill it…and it wouldn't be fair for you to try. There is a part of me that's…that's missing or lost and I have to find it…on my own.
She was close now and her calm heartbeat pumped just a little bit faster in the anticipation of the kill. Helena straightened her right arm and allowed the hidden arrow in her sleeve slide down and into her hand.
"Max you deserve someone that can….return your affections fully and not someone as damaged as I am weighing you down. God….I really wish that I could just…..look into your eyes one more time, those beautiful brown eyes. Max please don't hate me for this…please don't…I just need you to understand….and…"
Brian heard the beep which signified that the message was full; he let a groan and then hung up the phone. He leaned his head against the payphone and he swallowed hard.
Helena quickened her pace, she was a few steps away from vengeance, she could already feel the arrow in her had piercing his flesh and heart.
'For Charlotte' she thought rearing her hand back, but before she could make her move against the unaware Brian she felt three sharp pricks hit her neck. Instantly her hand went to her neck and she felt three thin but sharp needles.
A whisper of a gasp escaped her throat as her eyes started to droop and she began to sway. Her swaying caused a few people to stop and stare at her. Helena suddenly fell backwards and into the awaiting arms of a man in his late 40s to early 50s.
Brian heard a few people gasp and he turned to the right to see a woman pointing to something behind him. He turned around to see a woman collapse into a man's arms. The Man quickly turned slightly away from Brian and he gave him and the people a reassuring smile.
"Don't worry…..she's my wife. She has fainting spells like this all the time." He smoothly lied. The man glanced at Brian and then swiftly turned all the way around and began to walk down the street with Helena in tow.
Through droopy eyes Helena stared up at the man's face and her eyes widen in recognition.
"A-Azrael…." She whispered.
The man looked down at her because of her whispering his name.
"Don't worry my love…all will be explain in time but for now….you must sleep"
Helena grunted but the drugs in her system were powerful and before she knew it she was unconscious.
'That was weird' Brian thought before shaking his head. He moved away from the payphone and he faced the machine again. He debated with himself as whether or not he should call again but ultimately he decided against it. He figured that he had said enough so that Max would understand where he was coming from and plus he knew that if he were to call again he may just actually get her on the phone and then he would hear her voice and it would be that much harder for him to do what is necessary…..and that was to break up with her and leave Neo-Gotham City.
"It's the only way to keep her safe" he said in a low voice to himself. Brian sucked in a breath of air and started for the right. He walked a few paces down the sidewalk until he reached a parked red motorcycle…..compliments of a group of Jokerz he had run into the other day.
Brian swung his leg over bike and then grabbed his helmet. He put his helmet on his head and he slammed the visor down.
'There is nothing left for me here…..I need to go somewhere else anywhere but here….I need some time to think…..and a fresh start' he thought solemnly to himself. Brian started up the engine and revved it a few times before pulling out of the spot and zooming down the street.
Neo-Gotham Cemetery- 7:45 am
Max looked down at her cell phone to see that she had 1 new message, she held it up and was getting ready to flip it open but she stopped when she saw her best friend Terry McGinnis walking with his family towards her. She quickly placed her phone in her black purse and smiled a sad smile at her friend
"Hey Max" he replied reaching her and giving her hug, "Thanks for coming" he continued.
"Of course I came. This Wayne guy gave you a job, got you into Hamilton University…effectively keep you from going back to Juvie or real prison…I owe him" she joked.
"Hello Maxine" came the voice of Mary McGinnis. Max and Terry broke from their hug and she eyed his mother.
"Hello Mrs. McGinnis it's good to see you again."
"Pink hair?" Mary questioned, "Wasn't it green"
"Yeah it was but it turns out green wasn't my color…so I opted for something more of my style" she replied with a smile.
"I love it" chimed Matt. Max turned her eyes to him and affectionately pinched him on the cheek.
"Thanks little man. You're getting cuter every year I see, probably a lady killer already huh?"
Matt smiled at her comment and he blushed a bit. Terry turned away from them and he looked at all of the people that were arriving at the cemetery. He could see the opened coffin that was hovering over a six foot hole and Bruce's picture set up next to the coffin.
"Pretty big turn out" Terry stated still looking at the arriving guest.
"Yeah, I'm just as shocked as you…..who knew a recluse had so many friends." Max replied.
"These people are not his friends…Wayne didn't have any friends. I don't who these people are but if I had to guess…employees maybe and the rest are just socialites with nothing better to do….and of course here's the news"
Mary, Matt and Max turned to the right to see a few news vans pull up and a news team getting out of the van with their equipment.
"Why are the news people here?" Matt asked.
"Because Bruce Wayne…pretty much the backbone of Gotham is dead Matt…this is a big thing" he answered.
Terry continued to let his eyes roam over the people that were still pouring in and his eyes landed on Commissioner Gordon who was looking at him. She was standing to the side with her husband Mayor Sam Young, Barbara looked at him and she nodded her head slightly. Terry's lip curled up a bit in a slight smile and he nodded his head back at her. Barbara turned away from him and then she and Sam started for their seats.
"Hey…look whose here" came Max's voice.
Terry turned his head to the left and standing a few feet away was Dana Tan dressed in a black dress.
"Hey Mrs. McGinnis, Matt, how about we go find a seat" said Max.
Mary looked at her son and then at Dana and a smile appeared on her face, she knew that the two had some history and she knew that this was a private moment.
"That sounds like a good idea…come on Matt" she replied grabbing Matt by the arm and leading him towards the white chairs that were set up in front of Bruce's grave. Max gave Terry's arm a squeeze before she followed along behind the two.
Dana slowly walked towards Terry who was also closing the distance between them, the two teens came to a stop once they were close enough to the other and they spent a moment just looking into the other's eyes.
"I'm uh…I'm glad you came, even though you didn't have to" said Terry rubbing the back of his neck.
"What kind of supportive Girlfriend would I be if I didn't show up?" she asked with a smile.
Terry smirked at her comment and dropped his hand to his sides.
"Girlfriend…" He started "So, it's safe to say that you and I….are together again."
Dana lowered her head a bit and then stepped forward and grabbed both of his hands with her hands.
"We are….but you have to promise me something"
"Just promise me you'll never hurt me again…..or lie to me"
Terry pursed his lips together in a thin line and then brought her right hand up to his lips and he kissed it lightly.
Dana smiled at him and he smiled back at her.
"GOOD MORNING LADIES AND GENTLEMEN" came a loud voice over a microphone.
Terry and Dana turned to see Sam Young standing at the podium addressing the gathered crowd.
Terry and Dana, both hand in hand walked towards the sitting guest looking for a place to sit.
Secret Lab- Same Time
"HWRAAAH!" yelled Derek Powers as he hurled a chair across the lab "GODDAMN ALL OF YOU! HWRAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!" he yelled again but this time releasing a wave of radiation.
"AHHH!" screamed two scientists who were unfortunately in the path of their enraged radioactive employer.
"Mr. Powers you must calm down….you're anger is the reason for you predicament" shouted a scientist from a platform up above. Derek looked up and curled his hand into a ball shape. Neon green radioactive energy formed in his palm.
"I KNOW!" he shouted throwing the ball. The ball hit the platform and melted the metal and made the scientist fall through the bottom and to the ground below in a heap. The scientist groaned and then rolled over in time to see Derek Powers stomp towards him. Derek stared down at the frightened man but in his enraged state he did see him he saw Batman…..or Inque.
Derek's foul mood was because of the news that was given to him about a day ago. After his battle with Batman and his defeat, he quickly made his way out of Wayne-Powers and found his way back to his secret lab for another skin graph, but to his horror the skin graphs were now impossible. Thanks to his battle with his enemies and him expending so much radiation his over all body temperature has risen; which means that his radiation eats through his skin twice as fast as it used to. His scientist put new skin on him but before he made it out of the door his radiation burned through it. Hour after hour and Day after Day he demanded his scientist to fix his situation but so far they haven't been able to create a new polymer that could protect him for any long period of time…and their failure only added to his rage.
Derek held up his hand getting ready to burn the cowering man beneath him when he heard a cell phone ring. He halted his assault and he turned around to a spare cell phone that he kept in the lab.
"Finally the little shit decides to call me back" he growled before turning back to the cowering man, "YOU! PUT THE PHONE ON SPEAKER!"
"Y-Y-Yes….M-Mr. Powers" he stuttered while scrambling from the floor and running to the cell phone.
The scientist flipped the phone open and pressed the speaker phone.
"Dad" came the light baritone voice of Derek's son Paxton Powers.
"Paxton…did you get my message"
"….I did….and yes I'm on the way to Gotham now, I should be there by 12:00. What is this emergency about?"
"Nevermind that boy….listen to me and listen good. I'm currently in a situation that will keep me from the public eye…I need you to step in for me and take control of Wayne-Powers"
"Bruce Wayne is dead. There is a clause in the contract that we both signed that states if either one of us dies…the other partner gets's full control of the company."
"That's good for you Dad"
"LISTEN!" Derek shouted "There is another clause in the contract that states if one of us dies then our heir or legal benefactor gets full control of whatever our shares we had…thus keeping the old contract in play which is what I don't want. Bruce Wayne didn't have any heir's that I know of…and I'm incapacitated for the moment…you need to get to Wayne-Powers and sign the company over to yourself because you are my heir."
"Why can't you do it when you get better?" Paxton asked in a bored tone.
"Because….I don't know when that will be and Wayne Powers needs a figure head…..also I don't want any last minute surprises. Bruce Wayne was a crafty son of a bitch…he may have a legal Benefactor out there somewhere…but it's been about 5 days which is the limit that I had set into the old contract. All that's needed is your signature; the old contract becomes null and void thus allowing you to have total and complete control over Wayne-Powers. Once I get better you'll sign the company back over to me…..am I clear."
"AM I CLEAR!?"
"Good" Derek stated before giving the signal to end the call. The scientist hung up the phone and released a breath.
Derek gritted his teeth, his jaw bones and teeth clinching together tightly. He held up his head and let his eye sockets glance at every scientist in the lab.
"YOUR ONE JOB IS TO FIX ME! GOT IT!" he shouted glowing a menacing neon green for a moment.
"Yes…sir" they replied.
"GET TO WORK!"
Neo-Gotham Cemetery- 8:45 am- Hill Top
Standing far behind in the back on a lonely hill top over looking the funeral going on down below was Damian Wayne. He had black shades to cover his eyes, a long black coat that billowed in the wind and a black funeral suit. Damian had his hands jammed into his pockets as he listened to the voices on the wind of the people down below paying their last respects to his father. He took a breath and then released it into the brisk wind. Suddenly though, the wind picked up a bit and he quickly noticed that he wasn't alone anymore. Damian glanced to the left to see none other than Superman standing next to him. Superman was wearing a black form fitting outfit with a silver S in the middle of his chest. He had long ago had to let Clark Kent die so that allowed him to be Superman all of the time. The Man of Steel looked the same as he always did, handsome; with icy blue eyes, tight even complexion and jet black hair, the only change was that he had gray hairs on the sides of his head.
"Fancy seeing you here Kent" said Damian turning back to the funeral.
"Hello Damian, it's good to see that you're alright. And despite what you may think…Bruce has been and will always be my friend. Of course I came" Superman replied in a soft tone.
"Hmph" Damian grunted.
The two men stood there in silence on the hill top both watching the funeral processions.
"Is he really dead?" asked Superman breaking the silence.
"…Yes he is…I was there at his death. Hard to believe isn't it?"
"I didn't believe it when I first heard it…thought it was some sort of plan of his, still do"
"Hate to break it to you but, there is no master plan on this one Kent. Use those x-ray eyes of yours"
Superman glanced to the younger man and then back to the funeral; he narrowed his eyes and zoomed in on the funeral. His eyes found the dead body of Bruce Wayne and then he did a thorough x-ray vision scan.
"Well?" Damian asked.
"It's him…..it really is him" Superman replied allowing his vision to return to normal. The two fell into another silence as Superman's words were allowed to sink in; but the silence only last for a minute before it was again broken by the Man of Steel.
"Damian, I've been hearing about your exploits."
"Have you now?" he questioned with raised eyebrows "Pray tell what have you heard about….my exploits"
"Batman returning to Gotham…..you know what being Batman leads to…" Superman started before a chuckle escaped the lips of the man next to him, "Something funny?"
"Hahahahaha….It wasn't me that was being Batman Kent. My father found himself another protégé."
Superman let out a sigh and rubbed his chin.
"Do you know who it is?"
"Well then you have to tell him….or her…"
"He…already knows the gory details of the last time Batman cast his shadow over the world and…he wants to continue and I for one don't blame him. Do you know how much good Batman brings to the table?"
"No one is disputing the amount of good that Batman does Damian, what concerns me and everyone else is the amount of distrust he brings with him. Keeping tabs on people….Operating in the shadows"
"That's where these crazies operate Kent…in the shadows. A place you know nothing about. Someone has to do the job no one else wants to."
"Damian, now is not the time for this….Batman was and will always be a hero…but that's in the past and it needs to remain in the past. This is a different era…the masked vigilante is a thing of the past and…."
"I disagree. I think this 'different Era' needs a blast from the past. I think now….right now, is the perfect time for the Dark Knight to Rise again. Rise from the ashes of the past….better, smarter, stronger."
Superman released another sigh and looked at the younger man next to him again. He could see that he was going on the defensive and an argument is definitely not what he had in mind when he arrived. He briefly hung his head for a second before holding it high again.
"Damian I'm not here to argue…..I'm just…..here to say goodbye to an old friend"
"Then pay your respects" Damian stated while taking a step forward.
"Damian wait." Superman called out.
Damian stopped in his tracks and he turned to back to his companion with his black jacket billowing in the wind.
"If Bruce is truly dead….he deserves a proper funeral. A true Funeral surrounded by his real friends and family. And buried somewhere where Heroes are meant to be buried. I would like it if you would attend."
"I think this is the place my father would want to be buried…right next to his parents" Damian responded in an assured tone, "But a true funeral for him is a good idea….he deserves that at least. But as far as me attending…I have work to do. Goodbye Superman"
Damian swiftly turned away from him and continued his walking towards the funeral procession.
"Amen" The Pastor announced.
"Amen" the gathered crowd repeated after him.
"Before we lay the dearly departed to rest is there anyone else who wants to say anything?" the Pastor announced to the gathered crowd.
"I would like to say something" came a voice.
The Pastor looked up while everyone turned around. From the back a man walked down the middle and towards the podium; of the people present only 2 knew the man. He continued forward until he reached the podium where the Pastor moved out of the way and allowed him to take his place.
Damian slowly reached up and took his black shades off and he let his eyes roam over the cameras and the people gathered in the crowd.
'No turning back now' he thought to himself while holding his head high.
In the crowd
Mary McGinnis suddenly sunk a bit further in her seat at the sight of the man at the podium.
'Oh My God….it can't be' she thought a bit frantically.
"Mom are you okay?" Matt whispered to her.
"Never better" she quickly whispered back.
"Good Morning everyone good morning, none of you know who I am so before I begin my eulogy I'd like to take this time to introduce myself. My name is…..Damian Wayne and Bruce Wayne is….was my Father."
Later- Cemetery- 8:30am
"This is insane…who knew Bruce Wayne had a kid" said Max.
"Who knew he was so hot" said Dana
"Hey" chimed Terry.
"Kidding Terry, kidding" she replied playfully nudging him. The three of them along with Mary and Matt McGinnis were standing off to the side. The funeral had ended and most of the guests were leaving but those that stayed around were murmuring about the hottest topic which was the bombshell of Damian Wayne being revealed to them. Rich socialites surrounded him as well as news cameras all wanting a statement from him about where he's been etc...
Terry looked at him and shook his head a bit, he couldn't hear what he was saying but he knew that whatever he was telling the people they were buying because they all smiled and laughed. While he was looking at him though Terry's mind drifted to the message that Bruce had left for him on the Bat computer and he wondered if Damian was going to comply with the message or was he going to stop him from continuing to be Batman. It was something that he had been dreading and dwelling on for the past couple of days; was Damian just going to show up one day and demand he return the suit…if that happened Terry had already prepared himself for a fight but he knew that Damian could defeat him in an instant.
'I wonder is he just screwing with me…making me sweat.' Terry thought to himself still looking at Damian, but as he was looking, Damian turned his head and stared right back at him. Terry's eyes widen a bit and he turned away. He looked at his friends for a second and then turned his eyes back to Damian only to see him excuse himself from the people surrounding him and walk in his direction.
Damian reached Terry and his group and he looked at each of them with a warm and charming smile on his face.
"Hello, you must be Terry McGinnis. I've heard a lot about you, Damian Wayne." He said.
"Nice to meet you" Terry replied with a nod of his head.
"My Father spoke very highly of you; may I ask who your friends are?"
"Uh…..this is my best friend Max Gibson and my girlfriend Dana Tan"
"Hello it's nice to meet you lovely young ladies"
"You too" they both replied in unison.
Terry shook his head and then turned to the side a bit and allowed his mother and Matt to step forward.
"This is my brother Matt and my Mom."
Damian looked at them both but he let his eyes set on Mary, he narrowed his eyes a bit at the sight of her.
"It's nice to meet you both….I'm sorry, Mrs. McGinnis have we met before because I'm suddenly struck with a sense of déjà vu"
Mary let a calm smile grace her lips even though she was extremely nervous and her heart was pounding a mile a minute in her chest.
"Um…no, I just have one of those faces." She replied.
Damian lingered on her face for a moment before shaking his head.
"And a beautiful face it is" he said charmingly.
"Why are you here?" Terry asked quickly extending his head so his face was blocking his mother's face from Damian's line of sight.
"Ah, yes. Well like I said Terry my father….spoke very highly of you, so much so that my curiosity of your skills as his gopher was piqued. I would be overjoyed if you would be willing to show me those skills."
"Wait, what are you saying?" he asked.
"I'm offering you your old job back Terry. My Father may be dead but….I'm new to this city and during my acclimation I might need someone who knows the place….a helper. You'll still be a gofer though in every sense of the word…going for this and going for that, but the same deal my father offered you is still on the table…you know with the funding for Hamilton University and your…parole situation. I know about this because we kept in contact regularly. Although, if you accept I must warn you….I like my father can be quite difficult to work with…at least that's what I'm told, but if you're willing….I'm willing…so, do you think you're up to the challenge?"
Terry looked him in the eye and he smirked.
"Well then Terry….Welcome, to my World" said Damian holding out his hand. Terry looked down at the outstretched hand he confidently reached up and firmly shook it.
Damian broke the handshake and took a step back.
"It was nice to meet you all but I'm afraid I must be going…..Terry, I look forward to working with you"
Damian gave them all another smile before he swiftly turned and walked away.
Few Feet Away
Barbara was standing off to the side with her husband and as before they both were conversing with one of the socialites at the funeral but really Sam was doing most of the talking. Barbara was surveying the area when her eyes landed on Damian talking to Terry and what she assumed to be his friends and family. At the sight of him Barbara couldn't help but shake her head at the fact that he decided to reveal himself the way he did and his decision to stay in Neo-Gotham. She had no doubt in her mind that from now on things would be a whole lot more interesting.
BUZZZ! BUZZZ! We the loud vibration of her cell phone. Barbara whispered an apology and grabbed her purse and opened it, she removed her cell phone and answered the call.
"Commissioner Gordon speaking"
"Commissioner this Detective Bullock"
"What is it Detective….and aren't you supposed to be on sick leave to let your injuries heal?"
"My injuries are fine….I heal faster when I'm at work. Listen though….something was just dropped off at our building and it's addressed to you."
"Addressed to me?"
"Is it something dangerous?"
"From the looks of it no…..but it could be dangerous….you just have to come see it for yourself"
"….I'm on my way" she replied hanging up the phone, 'It's always something' she said in her mind before getting her husbands attention.
About an Hour later- NGCPD- Roof
Commissioner Gordon pushed open the door that led to the roof and she calmly stepped onto the concrete roof. The first thing that caught her attention was that several of her officers and Detective Bullock were standing around a large circular object that was covered by a brown tarp. She shook her head and walked over towards them.
"Morning Commissioner, how was the funeral?" Montoya asked.
"Like any other funeral" the commissioner replied "What do we got?"
"I don't know it was dropped off on the roof"
"We don't know, but we did find this letter"
Commissioner Gordon looked to her right just as Montoya produced an envelope. Barbara grabbed the letter and read the front.
"To Commissioner Gordon from an old friend" she read out loud. Barbara quickly opened the letter and pulled out the sheet of paper and she began to read.
"Son of a Bitch" she said in an amused tone. Barbara folded the letter back up and walked towards the circular object; she grabbed the tarp and quickly removed it, "Heh….Heh….HAHAHA!" she laughed.
"Holy Hell" Montoya whispered in shock "What are we supposed to do with this thing?" she asked.
Barbara looked at her and then smiled.
"Plug it in."
Across Town- 10:15 am- Neo-Gotham Channel 7 News Station- Meeting Room
News Chief Fredrick Dippson, a plump man in his 40s with graying brown hair, tired brown eyes, a light pale complexion and a 5' o clock shadow stood in front of all his reporters. His tired eyes roamed over all of them and then a gruff look appeared on his face.
"Did anyone happened to watch Bruce Wayne's funeral" he asked in a demanding tone, no one raised their hand "That's just what I thought…none of you were watching so all of you missed the scoop of the fucking century. Right now every news outlet is wondering what I'm wonder and what you're all going to be wondering in the next 2 seconds…WHO THE HELL….. IS DAMIAN WAYNE!"
"To be fair chief the Bruce Wayne funeral was a fluff piece…..we're all out trying to get real stories" came the voice of Fredrick's top in field reporter Veronica Vale.
"Can it Vale, this is a real story. This guy….Damian Wayne claims to be the long lost son of billionaire recluse Bruce Wayne. Where the Fuck has he been all of this time…..Who is his mother….What does this mean for Wayne Powers. I wanna know everything about this man. EVERYTHING! Where he lives…What's his favorite food…Who he's screwing...his whole freaking background…I want it…I want his story and I want it 30 minutes ago." Fredrick demanded.
"Chief I think we have better stories out there" said Veronica
"Like what Vale?"
"Like Batman" she replied.
Fredrick stared at her for a second before rubbing his stubbly face.
"Fine..I want both stories…..the first person to bring me a scoop on both of these guys….gets a 1,000 credit bonus….plus a paid vacation. "
"Now you're talking chief" Veronica replied leaning up in her seat.
"GET TO WORK!" Fredrick shouted.
Veronica stormed to her desk with the intentions of getting her purse and her keys, she wanted that bonus and that vacation but not only that she did find it a bit curious for Damian Wayne to just show up out of the blue one day.
'Maybe there is a story here…..just who is Damian Wayne?' she thought to herself while reaching her desk 'I guess it's up to me to find out'
Veronica grabbed her things and she turned around only to run into her friend, rival and sometimes partner Edward 'Eddie" Knox.
Eddie Knox was the same age as Veronica around his early to mid 30s, he brown hair cut into flattop hair style. He had fair skin, green eyes and a cleft chin. Knox was about 6'0 and was wearing a white shirt, red suspenders and brown pants.
"Going somewhere Veronica?" Knox asked.
"I'm going to get the story Eddie…do try to keep up."
"You'll never get that scoop before me" Knox challenged with a smirk.
"We'll see" she replied accepting the silent challenge.
"Care to make a wager?" he asked.
Veronica smirked and passed him.
"Terms" she said over her shoulder while briskly walking towards the elevator.
"If you get the scoop before me…I'll pay for another vacation on top of the one the chief is already offering, because you know his vacation is going to be on the cheap side." Knox said quickly while following behind her.
"And if you get the scoop before me?" she asked reaching the elevator and hitting the down button.
"You and I will go on a date….a real date."
Veronica turned to Eddie and she looked him in the eyes.
"Eddie, dating in the work place is never a good idea…something I keep telling you every time you ask me out on a date."
"That's why I'm resorting to making a bet. I'm letting fate decided." He replied smoothly.
DING! Went the sound of the elevator, Veronica bit her lip and stared into his green eyes. She took a step back and stepped onto the elevator.
"You're on Knox" she stated.
"Happy hunting" Knox replied just as the elevator doors closed.
Paxton Powers, the son of Derek Powers stepped through the doors of Wayne Powers and the first thing he saw was the front lobby that was under construction. He looked at the damage briefly but then strolled passed all of the workers and people, he had better things to do than to stand around and gawk.
Paxton was every bit his father's son, he looked just like him. He was 26 years old stood at 6'0, with green eyes, tan skin, a clean shaven face and instead of his hair being a grayish-white he had jet black hair. He had a lean athletic build that was accentuated by the form fitting Italian blue suit on his body.
Paxton strode towards the elevator and he pressed the up button. The elevator arrived and he quickly stepped on and he pressed a button.
The elevator doors closed and Paxton looked at himself in the doors reflection and he let a scowl grace his handsome face.
"I bet he doesn't even know what I've been up to these past 8 years….probably doesn't even care, prick" Paxton said to himself in regards in to his father Derek Powers, whom he hated with a passion, "Does he really expect me to sign the company over to him, Wayne-Powers…a multi-billion dollar company. HA! The old man must not be feeling well, because if he actually expects that then he's in for a rude awakening. This is my shot at being in control and I'll be damned if I'm going to give it up. Heh, patience…all it took was patience. I knew he would slip." Paxton said
DING! Went the sound of the elevator arriving on the specific floor, the floor of the company's attorney. He remembered the floor from the last time visited the Wayne-Powers building. Paxton stepped off of the elevator and he walked down the hallway and towards the door to the attorney's office.
"Darryl I'm ba….." Paxton started but stopped because he realized that their attorney: Darryl Hutchinson wasn't alone; there was another man in the room sitting in the chair in front of the attorney's desk. Paxton and the mystery man eyed each other before Darryl rose from his seat.
"Paxton?" the attorney questioned truly shocked to see the younger man.
"Yeah it's me" Paxton replied, "What's going on?"
"I was hoping your father would walk through that door."
"He called me to act as his proxy for the time being. He's sick or injured or something."
"Well I hope…he has a speedy recovery" Came the voice of the mystery man.
"Not too speedy" Paxton replied under his breath "I'm sorry I do not know who you are but my attorney and I have much to discuss so if you could please come back later" Paxton continued.
"Actually your business and my business coincide" The man replied standing up "Allow me to introduce myself…I'm Damian Wayne…the new Owner of Wayne-Powers…soon to be changed back into Wayne Enterprises."
"WHAT! You can't do that"
"Afraid I can" Damian replied "You see I read the old contract and it states whoever has the majority controlling shares of the company..…..well they can do whatever the hell they want and I for one never really liked the named Wayne-Powers….but Wayne Enterprises….has a certain ring to it"
"My father has the controlling shares of the company and he's a Partner" Paxton said in an angry tone, "And Bruce Wayne didn't have any heir's….you're some type of imposter…a grifter" Paxton accused. Damian stood up from his seat and walked towards Paxton and stood in front of him.
"I can assure you that Bruce Wayne is my father and Derek may have been Bruce's partner but he's no partner of mine and I know that your father had most of the controlling shares but you see….since my father died all of his shares went to me and in the past couple of days I've been buying up all of the controlling shares… through varies charities and so forth look kid…it's all a bit technical but perfectly legal. So go through it all you like and you tell your father that I'm looking forward to having a face to face with him." He said, "Good day gentlemen…I have a mansion to redecorate"
Damian swiftly exited the office leaving a fuming Paxton Powers in his wake.
Nightfall- Edge of Neo-Gotham-Bar- 7:35pm
"Reload" came the voice of a man in his late 50's possibly early 60s. He had gray hair, a wrinkled but still handsome face, blue eyes and a slim build. The old man was wearing a black suit but had the tie let down and undone.
The bar tender heard the order and he grabbed a container of whiskey and he walked over and filled the glass that was in front of the older man.
"Thanks" The old man said grabbing the shot of whiskey with a metal mechanical hand and then tossing it back in one gulp.
Brian Millwood entered the crowded bar and he looked around for a second, searching for a seat. His eyes landed upon the only open seat which was next to an old man in a black suit, releasing a tired sigh Brian walked over and sat down next to the man.
The bartender saw the new customer and he walked over to him.
"What will it be?" he asked.
"Whiskey" Brian stated.
The bartender nodded and produced a shot glass while grabbing a bottle; he poured the whisky into the shot and pushed it to Brian.
"Thanks" Brian said grabbing the whiskey and gulping down. Normal Brian wouldn't drink but considering the week he was having he was doing a lot of things he normally wouldn't do and he desperately needed something to fill the whole in his heart. Brian coughed a bit as the alcohol rolled down his throat and settled in his stomach.
"Smooth. Bar keep I'll have another" he called out.
"Rough day young man?" came a voice.
Brian turned to his left and his eyes locked with older man that was sitting next to him.
"Rough life" Brian replied right as the bartender walked back over and poured another shot in his glass. The old man raised his glass and the bartender poured him another shot as well.
"I can relate" the old man replied gulping his shot of whiskey.
"No. I don't think you can" Brian said as he too gulped his glass of whiskey.
"You'd be surprised. So, young man why are you here…shouldn't you be in the city or at school somewhere doing what people your age do? Enjoying your youth."
"I'm different from people my age…and I'm here because I'm looking for a new beginning."
"At the bottom of a whiskey glass?" The old man questioned "I can tell you now that you're off to a bad start."
Brian turned his head to his 'companion' of sorts and then he jerked his head in the direction of the man's glass.
"What about you…..why are you here and why are you staring at the bottom of a whiskey glass that looks just like mine?"
"I was supposed to be at a funeral today…but I just couldn't bring myself to go and before I knew it I found myself here."
"…I'm sorry for your loss"
"Yeah me too. Especially since I never got a chance to say good-bye…..or I'm sorry."
Brian looked at him and was about to say something when the doors where kicked open causing everyone to turn towards the entrance.
Four intimidating looking Jokerz enter the small bar and they each hand weapons in their hands. One had a gun, the other hand a club, another had a pipe and the last one had spiked brass knuckles.
"Everyone this is a robbery" The Joker with the gun stated in a low voice "Hand over all of your money and valuables and you'll live to see another day. If you don't well…." he trailed off.
Brian saw the Jokerz but he didn't see them he saw Terminal and he balled his fist in absolute anger at the sight of him and almost in a trance like state he rose up from his seat.
"Hey" the old man next to him said but his voice fell upon deaf ears as Brian walked towards the four Jokerz.
Brian walked towards the Joker with the gun, each stride with purpose. The Joker with the gun turned it on Brian but he ducked and then came up using his left hand grabbed the armed Joker's hand and then he came across with a hard right hook punch. Brian hopped to the side and kicked the Joker with the pipe in the knee cap popping it out of place and sending him to the ground in agony.
'Those moves' thought the old man seeing Brian in action.
Brian hopped up again and drove his knee into the side of the Joker that was still holding the gun. He kneed him in the kidney and the sudden pain made him drop the gun and Brian kicked it across the floor. Brian heard a grunt and he flipped over a swing from the club and then rose up and wrapped his arm around his enemy's outstretched arms. He locked them tightly and then with a jerk upwards broke both of the man's arms.
"AHHH!" he Joker shouted in pain. Brian let him go and then grabbed him by the front of his clothes and brought him in for a hard head butt that knocked him down. Brian turned to the last Joker who held up his fists. The Joker reared his hand back and threw out a straight punch. Brian dropped down to the ground in a split and punched the Joker as hard as he could in the groin.
"GAH!" the Joker thug gasped in pained before dropping down to the ground. Brian rose up, he was breathing heavily and his fists were still clinched. He could hear the men on ground in agony and suddenly they shifted from being Terminal to being normal and regular thugs.
Brian's eyes widen at the sight of them and his breath quickened, he swallowed hard and he took off for the exit.
"HEY YOU DIDN'T PAY!" shouted the bartender.
Outside the Bar
Brian stepped outside and he greedily sucked in the fresh air. He lifted his head up to the sky and he took slow even breaths trying to calm his beating heart. He stood there for a good minute trying to get his adrenaline to calm down.
"I've got to get out of this city" he said to himself. Brian looked to the right and he ran to his motorcycle.
Brian hopped onto his bike and he tried to start up his bike but right before he turned it on he looked up to see the old man that he had been talking to standing right in front of his bike. Brian recoiled a bit at the sight of him….he didn't even hear him or see him leave the bar.
"Going somewhere kid" the man asked in a sight cheerful tone.
"Away from this fucking city." Brian replied quickly.
"Hmph" The old man grunted while shaking his head "You and I are more alike than you know. Those moves back there….where did you learn them."
"What is this 20 questions leave me alone" Brian snapped.
"The Huntress taught you those moves didn't she…or at least your style is based upon her style. Fierce and quick brutality."
Brian's eyes widen and he jumped off the bike and got into a fighting stance.
"Are you with the Knightbreed…..are you here to kill me?" Brian asked readying himself for a fight.
"Whoa…easy…easy there killer. I'm not here to fight…don't even think I could fight anymore without breaking a hip" he joked.
"Then what do you want?" Brian demanded
"To help you….I think you and I are kindred spirits"
"Kindred spirits?" Brian scoffed before shaking his head "...Who are you old man?"
"Where are my manners, my name is Richard Grayson…but most people call me Dick" the man said while walking forward and holding out his hand, "What's your name?"
Brian lowered his hands and relaxed, he didn't get an enemy vibe off the man in front of him. He looked at his friendly outstretched hand and slowly Brian walked forward and shook his hand.
"It's nice to meet you Brian."
"You said you wanted to help me"
"Well, inside you were talking about a new beginning…I think I can help with that" Dick said in a cheerful tone.
"Tell me something Brian…..do you like the Circus?"
Neo-Gotham- McGinnis Household- 8:30pm
Terry McGinnis was sitting alone in his room and he was staring at the Bat-suit that was on the edge of his bed. The young hero let out a sigh of relief because he still couldn't believe that Damian had actually agreed to Bruce's final wish to see the two of them working together. He thought for sure that Damian would show up and take the suit away but he didn't, he said he was looking forward to working together. Terry smiled as the funeral replayed over in his mind and the 'official' meeting of Damian Wayne. He was a bit shocked when he decided to reveal himself but he knew that Damian was just like his father so that meant that it was some type of plan, most likely a plan to lure Derek Powers out of hiding. At the thought of Powers Terry sat up straight in his bed and then he scooted towards the edge and he grabbed the bat-suit.
He let his fingers dance across the material for a long minute and then he let his eyes fall unto the bat-symbol and his mind was brought to the message on the Bat-Computer that Bruce had left for him.
Days Ago- Bat-Cave
Terry stood in front of the bat-computer staring at his mentor Bruce Wayne. He shakily raised a hand and he hit the play button allowing the message to start playing.
"Hello Terry, if you're watching this message then it means I'm dead. I didn't survive my battle with Powers. I expected something like this to happen…..I knew that I might die and I went anyway because I had to….I had to go and confront him, I know you might not understand why but perhaps one day you will. Now under no circumstances do I want you mourn my death. Do not mourn me…..mourning is pointless because no matter how much sadness you feel it won't bring me back, move on. Instead of mourning me I want you to remember what I stood for…..what we stand for and always remember what that symbol on your chest means and never be corrupted. Terry I want you to continue to be Batman….you've shown me that you have what it takes to continue the mission but I must ask though that if you continue… you have to continue with Damian. Terry I've shown you the basic of being Batman but…..you're still not ready. I wish that we had more time but life doesn't work on what we wish. I can not bring you to the level that you need to be…only Damian can do that. I've asked him to help and I hope that he says yes, but if he says no…then I'm going to ask you to give up being Batman. I know you're not going to want to do it but you won't survive. You're training isn't complete. The things that you've come up against are only the tip of the iceberg. Being Batman is a constant challenge and it will test your mind, body, and spirit and in order to pass each test you need the proper tools. Tools Damian can supply you with. However, the tool that's the most important is the tool that you already possess. The Will. You have the will to do the necessary work…..you have the will to seek out injustice and take it head on. I admire you Terry, I do…..never lose that will and always remember what you're fighting for. And I just have on last thing to say….and that's thank you…..for bringing me back. Good Luck and I'll always be watching"
Present- McGinnis Household
Terry let a smile grace his lips a she thought back to the message.
'Nicest thing he ever said to me…and you're welcome Bruce. Thanks for giving me a cause….and I'll never forget what I'm fighting for' he thought to himself while standing up from his bed. He lifted up the bat-suit and he continued to stare at the red symbol.
"YES TERRY!" Mary McGinnis shouted back.
"I'M GOING OUT!"
Wayne Manor- Bat-Cave
Damian Wayne was typing into the bat-computer when he heard Yinn walking up behind him. He turned around to see Yinn carrying a tray with two cups of tea.
"Tea Master Wayne?"
"Thanks Yinn" he replied grabbing one of the cups and taking a sip.
"What are you doing?"
"I'm putting the final touches to my linking program"
"As of now Yinn all of our side projects are going to be run from here so I'm redirecting all of our hubs to send all the collected information back to the bat-computer….and finished." He stated.
They both looked up to see a map of the world on screen and several green dots traveling across the map and all the way to the Neo-Gotham spot on the map.
"What is that?" Yinn asked.
Damian hit a button on the computer and a screen pulled up and Mayor Sam Young could be seen in front of a large crowd.
"The Mayor is giving a speech tonight on the state of things. It's only been a few days since the war broke out downtown and the convention center being blown up. He's just reassuring the public that things are back to normal."
"Well maybe not completely normal" Yinn replied with a smirk. Damian glanced at him with his own smirk.
"No, not completely"
Neo-Gotham- Downtown- Mayor's Office
Mayor Sam Young walked down the steps of the Mayor's Office and next to him was his wife Commissioner Barbara Gordon-Young. The two made their way to the podium and Sam glanced at her briefly before stepping towards the microphones. He eyed all of the reporters and cameras flashing for a minute before he began to speak.
"Good Evening Neo-Gotham City, as I'm sure many of you are wondering about the safety of this fair city that was being threatened just five days ago, and I know that many of you have never truly felt safe in Gotham but my fellow citizens listen to my words now, hear them and understand them. Gotham is safe. Yes, the unfortunate events that happened a few days ago was the culmination of several key events that were set in place by the Jokerz but thankfully our dedicated officers of the NGCPD put a stop to their plans. Terminal, the leader of the Jokerz has been killed and his Jokerz have been scattered. Everyday the police are rounding up more of the Jokerz so your fear of them Gotham City can be put to rest, as well as your fear of the Knightbreed and their brand of extreme justice. The Knightbreed and their leader has been chased away from these streets so no longer do you have to fear them…..
Wayne Manor- Bat-Cave
DEEET! DEEET! DEEET! Went a rapid sound. Damian tore his eyes away from the broadcast and he hit a green button.
"What is it Master Wayne?" Yinn asked.
"Trouble….I'm picking up a police scanner."
Commissioner Gordon was standing off to the side watching her husband give a very inspiring speech when she heard her police radio go off. She took a step back and grabbed her radio.
"This is Gordon" she responded in a hushed voice.
"Commissioner we have a hostage situation"
"The Neo-Gotham Gold reserve…just as the employees were getting ready to leave they were taken hostage and the man that's taken them hostage is going is going to detonate a bomb. How do you want us to handle this?"
"We received a letter from Batman today" Came Sam's voice. Commissioner Gordon turned her head to her husband and a smirk crossed her lips.
"Get Detective Bullock and tell her to go to the roof…."
"I know that many of you are a bit untrustworthy of this mysterious vigilante and I know that many of you consider him no better than the Knightbreed but Gotham….Batman is actually here to help. Since his return he has been helping the police to battle back the Jokerz and Knightbreed so you all have nothing to fear from him. The letter he wrote to us states this:
"Please Inform the citizens of Neo-Gotham that they their safety is no longer an issue…..I've been gone a long time and in that time the criminals have forgotten what justice means…I have returned to remind them. No longer shall the weak be preyed upon in the dark. Whenever the forces of evil rise to cast a shadow over this city….….Call Me."
"HOW DO WE CALL HIM!" a reporter shouted out.
Sam looked at the reporter and then turned to the right as Commissioner Gordon stepped into view. She leaned down towards one of the microphones and then looked at the reporter.
"We'll call him just like we used to…..with the Signal"
Suddenly a bright light shined in the sky over all of them. Everyone turned and looked upwards to see a Bat symbol high in the sky and they began to murmur in amazement.
All across Neo-Gotham City...the Bat-Signal could be seen. Flying cars came to halt and people poked their heads out of their cars and pointed. Children, Adults, Young people, Old People…..Everyone stopped what they were doing and looked at the signal in the sky staring at it in wonder and awe.
Damian looked at the Bat-Symbol on the screen and he let a small smile grace his lips.
"Hmph...Game On. McGinnis….McGinnis can you hear me?"
"Loud and Clear"
Standing on the edge of one of the tallest buildings in the futuristic city of Neo-Gotham City was Terry McGinnis, he was dressed in his uniform but he had his mask off and grasped tightly in his hand. He too was staring upwards and at the symbol in the sky…the symbol that he wore across his chest…the symbol of the Batman.
"McGinnis….McGinnis can you hear me" came a voice. Terry lifted up his mask and then he put it over his head and at that moment he ceased to be Terry McGinnis and he became Batman.
"Loud and Clear" he answered.
"…..Do you see it?" Damian asked.
"I do…..and it's beautiful."
"They're calling you, your presence is needed."
"What's the situation?"
"The Neo-Gotham Gold Reserve is being held hostage by some guy who calls himself Mad Stan…he says he's going to blow up the reserve along with the people inside. Why don't you go check it out…show me what you got."
"I'm on my way."
Batman looked at the signal one more time before he jumped off the building, he spread his wings and curled his feet and rocketed off to the reserve…..prepared to save the day once again.
END OF VOLUME 1: WHOOOOOO! WE DID IT! WE HAVE REACHED THE END OF BATMAN BEYOND VOLUME 1. It has been a long road and epic road but alas it has come to an end. I hope everyone enjoyed the Epilogue….better yet I hope everyone enjoyed the story. My version of the events based off of the AWESOME and KICK ASS show Batman Beyond. Only lasted for three seasons but it was one of the best animated programs ever produced and hopefully DC will recognize that and revive it or at least reboot it. Anyway, I hope that I've answered a lot of questions but at the same time sparked new ones for you readers to ponder about until the next volume. I wonder though how many of you can pick out the homage scenes and characters that came from Tim Burton's Batman….and yes Danny Elfman was playing in the background when I was typing this chapter….LOL. I hope this story has been as Epic as I promised it would be and a special and sincere Thank You goes out to all of you readers and reviewers for making this story one of the most reviewed in the Batman Beyond section of this great website. I THANK YOU ALL for that and I thank you all for sticking with me even though there was like a 6 month hiatus there…lol. Anyway again I hope you all enjoyed the story, my characters and my ideas. If anyone has any questions comments, rants, raves or anything in-between feel free to drop me a PM or leave it in the review, this is me….Nomad88 saying later….
Batman Will Return.