TIMELINE: AU, Pre-Series

DISCLAIMER: I don't own anything. The characters, belong to their rightful owners.

-PROLOGUE-

Ten-year-old Dinah Redmond had no idea where she was headed. Or what to do. It was really late at night and she was wandering around New Gotham. She had just been thrown out of her foster parents' house because she had yet another dream. She didn't know why she had them, the dreams, but they tended to always come true. Her foster parents hadn't liked it. They would lock her in a closet for hours until she would promise them to stop seeing things. But the dreams still came.

There had been times when her foster parents would even hit her. Dinah had been hit so many times she had lost count. But this time they had thrown her out. She didn't know if she was happy or sad about that. No one wanted her, not even her real mom, who had just left her with the Redmonds. Her mother had said she would be back for her. That she was just staying with them for a little while. But she never returned.

Dinah wrapped her arms around herself, trying to guard against the cold. She had to find somewhere to sleep. She didn't like it in New Gotham - it scared her. She hadn't really been to the city before, but she had heard of weird things happening here. New Gotham City was close to where she had been living with her foster parents and the only way to get out was to go through Gotham.

Dinah kept on walking down the sidewalk, looking for a place to sleep. She was getting tired and was having trouble keeping her eyes open.


Selena Kyle was jumping buildings. It was rather late for her to be out but she had wanted some fresh air. She loved being out here, jumping over the rooftops. She had once been Catwoman, the most notorious thief in Gotham, but she had promised herself when Helena, her daughter was born, Catwoman would be no more. She was only Selena Kyle now.

Selena continued on, about to jump to the next building when something caught her eye. A very young girl, just wandering down the sidewalk by herself. 'Where were her parents?' Selena wondered. 'What kind of parents would let her just wander alone out here?' Selena's eyes changed to narrow slits, almost cat-like. Sensing. Something was wrong. She could feel it.

She jumped down to the ground and out between two buildings. She was a block in front of the girl, but the girl didn't pass her, instead turning into a dead end alleyway. Selena headed in the same direction. When she entered the alleyway, the girl was sitting down next to a dumpster, hugging her knees against her chest. Selena slowly approached the girl, not wanting to scare her.

"Hey sweetie," she said softly.

The girl looked up, then cowered back against the dumpster, shaking. "Please don't hurt me."

"I'm not going to hurt you, sweetie," Selena said, stepping a little closer. "Where are your parents, honey?" she asked. "You shouldn't be out here alone."

"I have no home anymore," the girl cried, pulling her knees closer to her chest. "My foster parents don't want me anymore. Not even my own mother did!" Her sobs became louder.

Her heart broke for the little girl. Selena got down her knees next to the girl, who had stopped shaking, seeming reassured by her presence.

"What's your name, sweetie?" she asked, pulling the girl into her lap.

"Dinah," the girl answered softly.

"Well, Dinah, I'm Selena. Why don't you come home with me for the night and tomorrow we'll figure things out," Selena said, getting up from the ground with the girl in her arms. There was no way she was going to leave the girl here. Even if she said no.

"I don't want to be sent back to them. Please don't take me back!" Dinah clung on to Selena tightly.

Selena held her as Dinah cried. "We'll figure things out sweetie," she assured her as she started walking back to her apartment with Dinah in her arms. Halfway there she saw that Dinah had fallen asleep. Poor girl, she thought. She moved a lock of hair away from the girl's face. As she did so, she could see black and blue bruises. Way too many to be just accidents.

'What did they do to her?' Selena thought angrily. There was no way she was going to let the girl go back to those people, she decided as she entered her apartment building. 'She can stay with me and Helena.' Hopefully later, she would be able to get more information from Dinah. She just needed to get the girl to trust her.