Setting - A somewhat retconned Earth-Two
Author - amit
Chapter - 1 of ???
Rating - PG-13 considering where this tale is going.
Word Count - 1193
Darkness swept over Gotham City like a thick woolen blanket over a slumbering babe. The sky turned from a bright, peaceful blue to an almost violent dark purple-red. One couldn’t see the stars because of the heavy layer of smog that rested above the city.
Down in the area known as Crime Alley, a shadowed, feminine figure swooped low, swinging from one building to the next before coming to a stop in front of what once used to be a coveted apartment building. The woman brought her grappling hook down and stuffed it into her bright red purse – a purse which held within it many other crime-fighting toys which the woman regularly had to use in her mission to rid Gotham City of its crime. She bent down low in front of the building, staring at the concrete steps at a pair of deep cuts that didn’t belong there. She studied them carefully, determined to prove the Batman wrong when he had told her that she wasn’t cut out for being a member of the Bat-family, or a detective of any sort. She studied the concrete in the cuts versus the concrete around the cuts and deduced that the cuts had to be fresh.
Batwoman stood up straight, checking out the area around her, wondering if whatever had caused those marks was still somewhere around her. She breathed in deeply, used to the smoggy air that Gotham afforded, and wondered how long ago the attacker that she was after had been here. She had heard rumors of the killer. The media had given him the name “Reaper”, a disturbing name if there ever was one.
“He’s long gone,” came a voice from inside the building. Batwoman pulled out a bright red batarang, her eyes wide with horror as she held it loosely in her hand. “Trust me, I’ve been following him for months, and he’s a fast one.”
“Who’s there? Show yourself!” Batwoman said, trying to not let her voice reach a shrill, high-pitched level.
“Relax. I’m a good guy,” said the feminine figure emerging from the shadows. The mysterious figure was dressed in a black body suit, a black bolero jacket, high-heeled buccaneer boots, and black fishnets. She had long, stylish blonde hair that swept over her right eye. “Batwoman, right? I’m the Black Canary,” she said in a rich, almost-sultry voice, a smile lighting up her beautiful features and glittering blue eyes. “I don’t think I’ve had the pleasure of meeting you yet.”
“I’ve heard of you,” Batwoman said, sticking the batarang back into her purse. “You’ve been in a lot of newspapers, and there’s a rumor going around saying that you use the Gotham Public Library as your base of operations.”
“You do your research well,” Black Canary said as she came to a stop in front of the woman in red and yellow. Batwoman stood a good five or six inches taller than the Canary, but it was the blonde woman who cut the more imposing figure between the two. “You’re new to this whole hero thing, aren’t you?” she asked after a second, leaning against the wall. Batwoman watched Black Canary’s easy, fluid movements. Though the blonde bombshell made small talk and posed as though she were being casual, her eyes darted around like a hawk’s taking in the entire area. In that moment, Batwoman realized who her role model should be.
“A little bit, yes,” Batwoman admitted softly, a light blush spreading across her porcelain cheeks and neck. “Is it that obvious?”
The Canary grinned knowingly at Batwoman. “It always is. Don’t worry, though, you’ll do fine. I mean, you have the Batman’s backing and all so –“ Black Canary trailed off as she noticed Batwoman’s reaction to Batman’s name. The taller woman had looked away shyly and cringed the slightest bit. A different sort of wry smile crossed the Canary’s face as she said, “He doesn’t love your running around as Batwoman does he?”
“He’d prefer I wouldn’t,” Batwoman admitted. “I mean, yes, I’ve only been at this for a few months, but you’d think he’d give a girl a chance before –“
The rest of Batwoman’s words were drowned out by the sound of a piercing scream that came from a nearby building. Black Canary stood up straight, taking down the stairs towards the direction of the scream. Yanking a batarang out of her purse, Batwoman followed suit, hurriedly trying to put her purse back on her shoulder while trying to get a strong grip on her weapon.
Black Canary’s boot heels thudded on the concrete, clicking and clacking as she ran swiftly. She pulled out two small canary-shaped shurikens from the canary pendant on her choker, keeping them at the ready in case she needed to throw them at someone or something.
The two women rounded the corner into a somewhat better part of Gotham City, hearing the piercing scream again. Batwoman looked up at a tall brick and steel building and saw a hooded silouhette from a third floor window. She pointed the view out to Black Canary, who nodded herself and ran up the steps of the brick and steel building, kicking it’s thick door in. Batwoman jumped over the door, following the Canary’s trail as they took the staircase up to the second or third floor, gunning on pure instinct as to which door exactly the screams were coming from. She prayed that Batman wouldn’t be there. The last thing she needed was seeing him at a time like this.
Black Canary came up against a door that seemed like a likely candidate and launched herself in the air splintering the door as she went through it, landing on her feet. She ran past the quaintly furnished living room, following the screams into the master bedroom. Black Canary threw open the door to see a hooded figure in a skull-mask holding a woman by her throat, a scythe embedded into her midsection. A curse escaped her mouth that made Batwoman turn a deep scarlet.
Without another thought, the Canary let loose her shuriken, only grazing the Reaper, who by then had dropped the bleeding half-dead red-headed on her pink satin sheets.
“Dirty girls,” he whispered softly. “Your time will come.”
Batwoman threw her batarang at him as he said this, but before it even crossed the room, the Reaper threw down a gas pellet and was gone in a puff of smoke.
“That was bad,” Black Canary said quietly as Batwoman moved to the dead woman’s side. She peered into the half-open green eyes and sucked in a deep breath.
“Victoria Vreeland,” Batwoman said, in horror. “I…I know her.”
“Sparkling socialite? What’s she doing in an area like this. It’s beneath her, don’t you think?”
Batwoman shrugged. “Let’s get her to a hospital first. I’ll call Batman and -”
Black Canary held up a hand. “How about not? I’ll get in contact with my friend Laurel Burton and then we’ll do some…research,” Black Canary said, thinking about some of the Reaper’s other victims.
There had to be a connection somewhere, and Black Canary was damned if she didn’t find it.