I don't own Justice League. This is just for fun.
Batman studied the images across multiple monitors with one thing in common: Superman. The Kryptonian was his closest friend outside of the little family the Dark Knight had formed, and after looking at the Man of Steel in various circumstances, Batman had reached an alarming conclusion. He just hoped he could stop this before it caused harm to the rest of the League.
As much as he hated to admit it, Batman knew he'd need help for this.
Flash glanced between Batman and the rest of the League. Their teammate had called them together, with the exception of Superman, and said he had a situation that needed resolved.
"So Bats, what's this big situation that you called us all here, except for, you know, the Big Guy." Flash paused as what he said started to clue him in, "You don't mean-"
Batman's rough voice cut in, "Yes, the situation I called you here to deal with is Superman himself."
After the gasps and shouts of disbelief had been voiced, Wonder Woman asked, "What exactly is the situation with Superman."
Batman showed them the images he had studied before. "These are recordings from before and after the formation of the League. What differences do you see?"
Curiosity caught them as they did as Batman asked. Both sets showed Superman doing his usual great heroics. Nothing suspicious, no sign of behavior that would warrant a secret meeting of the League. Flash actually caught on to Batman's meaning first.
"You mean he's…?" Flash trailed on, disbelief heavy in his voice. His quick mind already asking why, and bringing up a few reasons. Some of those chilled him, but the one he thought most likely, given his past encounters with Superman, just twisted his guts with guilt.
J'onn J'onzz was next to react. His eyes narrowed, deep in thought. "I don't think he is aware of this change. If it was an instinctual reaction, it would explain why I never sensed it."
Batman nodded in agreement, "Agreed. Given what I know of his history, he likely doesn't have any idea that he's doing it."
The rest of the League started. John Stewart leaned forward, "Wait, how much history we talking here? You mean, you know where Superman was before he showed up in Metropolis?"
Batman regarded them, and simply nodded.
Stewart just grinned, "One question, did he grow up on Earth?"
Batman narrowed his eyes, but slowly nodded again.
Stewart laughed, "I knew it! Next time I'm on Oa, going to collect on a few bets."
That got a few raised eyebrows, but Wonder Woman did her best to keep things on track. "I'm still not seeing the problem. He's doing the same things in both sets of video."
Batman stated, "Look at the how, not the what."
That quickly got everyone understanding what he was meaning. None of them quite understood why Superman would do this, but they all resolved to fix this, as soon as possible.
Clark Kent quickly changed his clothes to his Superman costume and flew up to the Watchtower. Batman had called, saying the League was meeting to deal with potential threat. Superman went through a list of potential threats that he knew of, and starting thinking on the best ways to deal with them.
He arrived quickly and went to the meeting room. Seeing he was the last to arrive was unusual, since he usually was able to get into space faster and easier than everyone except maybe John with his Latern ring. "Sorry I'm late," he half joked. Superman was getting a strange feeling from the way his teammates stared at him. "What's the threat?" He hoped changing the subject would dispel the strangeness he was feeling.
"The threat, Superman, is your behavior since the formation of the Justice League. Specifically regarding how you use your powers." Batman cut right to the point, in his usual blunt manner. That was a bit comforting, though the words confused Superman a great deal.
"I don't understand. What have I been doing with my powers that would be cause for concern?" Superman searched his memories for anything that would warrant this. "I don't think I've done anything inappropriate with my abilities. So what is this about?"
The rest of the League looked from Superman to Batman, and wondered how exactly they should handle this. Knowing there was a problem was a far cry from actually addressing it. John eventually decided on the direct approach.
"You've been sandbagging Superman."
Superman stared at the Green Lantern, desperately looking for any sign that this was a ridiculous joke at his expense. Nervous laughter died when he found only steady seriousness, Superman sighed. "What are you talking about, John?"
Batman held up a remote and turned on all the monitors installed in the room. Superman watched as it showed his exploits over the years. Recognizing the many events, he looked at Batman, "And?"
"After the formation of the Justice League, you've started limiting your efforts to largely brute force. You rarely use your speed, or your intelligence anymore, just barreling your way through obstacles rather than using your other abilities. All the finesse you had is gone. Why is that?"
Superman found himself rebelling against Batman's analysis. He holds back all the time, in everything. He could easily shatter hands with handshakes or high fives. Or take someone's head off if he sneezed at the wrong time.
"Superman, we are merely concerned that you are holding yourself back specifically in areas that we specialize in," interjected Wonder Woman. Diana noticed the stricken expression on her friend's face, and wanted him to know that they just wanted to help him. "We do not want you to come to harm from trying to not take our strengths as your own."
Superman stared at them confused. His mind whirled trying to make sense of all this. They wanted him to what? Be stronger, faster, smarter? Just flip a switch somewhere and do everything? "What is this for exactly? I remember using my strength and invulnerability a lot before the League was made. You even commented on it before, as I recall."
Batman nodded, "One of the reasons that it was hard to see. You do go to your strength first, but in the past, you were much better at recognizing when strength was not what you needed. You've stopped using your head to go around problems that you couldn't immediately go through. And I believe you aren't even aware of it."
Superman tried to see what Batman was talking about, and a couple times came up, but those wouldn't warrant all this. "Maybe, but this is a bit extreme for a couple times I've been a bit slow on the uptake."
J'onn added his piece, "You don't want us to feel less for not having the range of abilities you have. You limit yourself in those areas where we are strong so you don't overshadow us. At the beginning of the League, that was good for helping us learn about one another. Now it prevents us from learning more about you."
Superman rallied, "But you all know what I'm able to do. It's not like I've hidden my abilities over the years. I still use them, even if not as much."
Batman used the remote again. This time showing Batman and Robin talking with Commissioner Gordon, then fighting Bane, Riddler, and the Mad Hatter.
"Uh, why are we watching you now Bats?" asked Flash.
"That's Superman there. I was captured by Brainiac and Superman helped free me. He even demonstrated a skill that I don't think anyone has heard since. The ability to mimic voices through precise muscle control. He was also able to mimc Robin's voice."
Everyone turned to look at the Man of Steel as he appeared embarrassed by this revelation.
"An exercise I used as a kid to learn better self-control. Don't need to use it often," he sheepishly answered the silent questions in their expressions. "Got the idea from The Hobbit."
Flash started laughing. "Come on, you can sound like any of us? Sounds like a cool party trick. Why haven't you ever shown us?"
Superman just grinned, and in perfect mimicry of Flash's voice and intonations, "Well, just never thought to bust it out. Not like I'm going to use it to pick up women in bars, you know?"
The tension in the room broke as everyone laughed, quietly in Batman's case, at Superman's response and Flash's expression at hearing his own voice speaking to him. Batman quickly shifted from quiet laughter to normal, though he stared at Superman while the others composed themselves.
"Are you able to teach those control exercises to anyone?" Batman asked Superman.
Superman, now relaxed, shrugged, "Probably, never really tried before."
Batman nodded, "Than I have a proposal for the entire League. Cross training in different skills sets that we don't specialize in. We could do it while sharing a shift here in the Watchtower. What does everyone think?"
The League looked back and forth, gauging reactions from the others, before everyone started voicing their consent.
"Alright, we're in agreement. During Monitor duty, we work to help educate each other," Batman declared.
The League smiled and gave noises of agreement. The quiet didn't last long as people started bombarding Superman with requests for voices. Then J'onn got roped in and even Batman enjoyed their spot on impersonation of the Abbot and Costello classic Who's on First.
Superman stood in front of the League, his friends. He smiled and held out a variety of boxes in plain brown wrapping paper. The members were curious, but mostly clueless as to just what the Kryptonian had in store.
"A few months ago, you all got together in an intervention on my behalf. Since then, we've gotten stronger and closer as a team. I wanted to thank you all for that by looking into what I have of Krypton's science and make these gifts for you."
The rest of the team were surprised, but most were touched by the gesture, while Flash looked ready to tear in the packaging. Batman looked still, but the mask made it hard to gauge his moods.
When everyone opened the gifts and saw what goodies they'd been given, they were greatly surprised. Most found an identical copy of their uniform resting inside. Diana found a jacket and Capri style pants, both in the same color as her armor. J'onn found a variety of cookies, with a small, hand written recipe book with it. John pulled out a green, faceted crystal from his box.
Superman explained, "Most of you now have an advanced material designed to be lightweight, durable, resistant to impact, and absorbs and can use most forms of electromagnetic energy. Best combo of every alien race I've ever come in contact with in the form of clothing. Diana, same for yours, but since your armor is magic, just thought I'd give you some extra. J'onn, since you don't really wear clothes, I thought food was a good gift." J'onn raised a peanut butter cookie with a soft smile and a nod. "And for John, a backup storage cell for your ring. Not too much, but an extra 20-40% extra power should be good. Especially when you sync it up."
After a good minute of going over what they've given, Batman looked at Superman, "So why haven't you done something like this before?"
"You're the scientist. Didn't want to step on any toes." Superman offered with a small smile.
Batman nodded and then smirked, "And just what did you mean by 'use most forms of electromagnetic energy'?"
Superman grinned and started in on the features of their new gear.
Superman faced off against the woman in the archaic style of clothing, waiting for her to make a move. He recognized something about her, some slight thing that sparked nervousness. Her clothes, build, and the way she moved all reminded him of Wonder Woman. Regular spars let him appreciate Amazon fighting techniques. Getting ready to act quickly, Superman was able to dodge the pouch of likely magical dust. One blast of artic breath put the dust in solid ice.
"So will you come quietly now? I'm sure Diana would like to talk." He smiled and tried to be friendly. The woman screeched in rage and tried to punch him out. Repeated training in martial arts and speed allowed him to dodge instead of taking everything on the chin. Within moments, the young woman was restrained and screaming hatred at the Man of Steel and men in general.
"Let's go." He left the dust where it was. He'd pick it up for analysis after securing the screaming, struggling woman with the rest of the group.
"So, if you had been hit by that powder, it might have killed you?" asked Flash as Superman went over the analysis of the powder.
"Yep, as well anyone with a Y-chromosome."
Flash shuddered, "I am very glad we stopped her. That would have been very bad."
Superman smiled at him. "Before that little wake up call, it might have. Now, I know it's better not to get hit at all. Even when I now that I can take it."
Flash grinned, "Then maybe one of these days, we'll be able to race without me holding back."
Superman opened mouth to retort, stopped, sniffed the air, and took off. Flash, curious, took off after him. He found Superman in the Watchtower kitchen, eating a freshly baked apple pie with J'onn. Superman just smirked, "Speed's good, but not everything."
Flash grumbled a bit, but brightened when J'onn handed him a slice. They ate in comfortable silence. Flash glanced at Superman and felt glad to see the big guy relaxing with them. Ever since that meeting Batman called, life for the Justice League had gotten progressively better. They were tighter as a team, and individually their skills were only getting better. Flash grinned at attacked his pie with gusto.
So this came about by me going over all the Justice League cartoon episodes and realize they rarely had Superman be the main spotlight. They smurfed the Man of Steel into a muscle-headed space cowboy who wasn't that smart. Definitely not the Superman I grew up with. So yeah, this was me having the League help him help them all be better. Hope you enjoyed this, if not, oh well. This is for fun anyway.