Chapter 12: Scarred Surface
Disclaimer: This is my perspective on characters that belong to DC comics.
So all rights and stuff go to them except for the character(s) that I make
Batman punched at me but I ducked and punched, but he caught me and punched me, pushing me against the wall! I grabbed him and swung him into the wall, and then punched him backwards. He staggered back and I drop-kicked him in the chest, then brought my foot up into a roundhouse but he caught it! As he threw my foot to the floor, I flew forward and slammed into the wall and pressed his full weight against me.
"I knew you just wanted to get me in this position." I smirked.
Batman's breathing began to quicken and I could feel his heartbeat.
"I could have kicked your ass by now, but you're a good guy." I said, causing him to fly backwards a few feet, "Don't test me."
As I was about to obliterate them, something hit hard beside me, sending me across the room and to the wall, "How about us?" Superman asked, hovering by the hole in the wall. As I looked up, I saw Wonder Woman, Martian Manhunter, Flash and more Justice League members coming through the door.
I got to my feet, "Time for a little quiz." I said, electricity crackling at my hands.
"It does not have to be this way, we can help you." Wonder Woman shouted to me.
"He's a murderer." I said quickly.
"Yeah, he's a major creep." The Flash added.
"...But, he's human. He deserves worse than death." Superman said.
"Hey, supes, shut it." I said angrily, "You have no idea what's worse than death. How about being tortured for months? I highly doubt he's going to be tortured."
"Turn away from the anger and the revenge." Batman said.
"And go with the Light? You want me to be a good little padawan?" I spat, "Sorry, I guess I'm just a darker guy than I used to be."
"This can be done." Martian Manhunter interjected.
I lifted my hand and telekinetically cracked the murder's neck, "Oh, I think we're way past saving, don't you."
"I'm sorry." Superman said sadly.
"Bite me." I said, raising my hands and disappearing.
"We have to stop him." Superman said.
"I know." Batman said darkly, "And fast."
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
In Gotham State Asylum, Markus Fox lay on his cot and wondered where it all started. He wondered how his life had come here. He would be acquitted Monday, but the weekend was long. They had no evidence that he was in the mob, just the ranting of a teenager. He had always kept his dealings very private, through about six or seven people and a couple of companies. Spoiled little brat. He had gotten everything he ever wanted and he was still unhappy! How could he be unhappy? He was different, but is that an excuse? It was and it was all Markus' fault. He had let his son fall into the hands of that maniac. Ra's had been jealous that Phoenix's mother had chosen a family over the League of Assassins. When he got out, he'd do everything in his power to help his son. There was a clatter that made him sit up and hit his head on the bunk above his and rolled out of the bottom bunk. He stumbled over to the bars and looked out but he saw nothing. He turned in time to see Phoenix, dressed in a very odd outfit.
"Hey daddy." I smirked.
"Phoenix." Markus asked, trying to see him better in the darkness.
I shook my head, "Nope." I said, walking around the cell, "Quaint, almost...livable."
"What have you done?" Markus asked.
I stopped and tilted my head in his direction, my eyes wide, "What haven't I done?" I said.
"I know everything is scary, but you're in there somewhere." Markus said, "Phoenix, you're stronger than this!"
In a flash, I had him dangling by his collar, "You dare presume to question me?!" I shouted, "You have no idea what scary is...The scary part is that it's me." I said, letting him fall to the floor.
"You came to kill me?" Markus asked, "I saw your little rampage in the paper."
"Criminals don't need news." I said, not paying attention to him.
"Ra's Al Ghul has brainwashed you! This isn't helping Gotham, it's destroying you." Markus said quickly.
"I cannot be destroyed." I said, staring at him intensely, no sign of emotion on my face, "I am powerful. I am almighty. I am...rambling."
"I don't mind. You're a quiet kid." Markus said.
"You just weren't around." I said, again tilting my head in his direction, "I ran a company without you for years. You were always off on some business venture...you couldn't stand to be around me because of what I am."
"I love you." Markus said.
"What am I Willow?" I said, telekinetically shoving him against the bars of the cell and walking in front of him, looking up, "When I said `Hi', I meant bye." I looked at him intensely and could feel the energy draining from him. Suddenly, behind me the wall crumbled and Superman flew in, tackling me through the cell bars! We went through another wall and crashed onto the roof outside. I couldn't move and then I felt someone pick me up by the front of my suit and hold me in the air. I opened my eyes to see Superman's fist, still in mid-air. He hesitated. I caressed his hand, "I've always wanted to know what you feel like...what you smell like..." I said, leaning in to kiss him, but I stopped as I put him hand on his face and absorbed some of his power. As he fell to the floor, I smiled as my energy level came back and suddenly, I was levitating. I could feel his power.
"What'd...what..." Superman panted.
I smirked and looked into the sky.
Superman looked up too, "No!" he said quickly.
I flew into the sky, passing cloud after cloud until suddenly I was in space and I looked around, seeing the Watchtower and I flew to it, landing on it and walking inside. As I walked inside, I saw that I was standing on an elevated stage, looking out on the other superheroes as they conversed with each other. When they saw me, the room went quiet. I smirked at the idea of what I was about to do.
"Huma." A familiar, dark voice said, causing me to turn to the giant screen behind me. This screen was big enough to be seen from space, yet here it was, in the middle of the Watchtower, "I suspect you would like answers. Answers to all those unanswered questions...meet me where it all began."
"Ra's, you're really pissing me off." I growled, turning to the heroes, "You guys just got your reprieve." I said, rising and flying as fast as I could away from them. As I lowered towards Earth, I could feel the power diminishing and I felt myself weaken as I landed at the complex, which was a few mile from Gotham. The Compound looked the same, a bit ravaged, no doubt by the many cops that had invaded it in search for me. The place reeked of memories. The torture, the anguish, and the truth guided me through the compound, looking through doors and then my eyes stopped on my mother's dungeon. It took all I had not to mess the place up. There was a single book lying on the floor and I walked over and picked the "Bible" up from the floor. I opened and looked through the pages as I walked back to the what I assumed would be the living room, where the furniture was set up, just before you reach the kitchen.
"I never believed in story books." Ra's said, allowing me to bring my eyes up to see him, "That one gave me a run."
"It's not a story book." I snapped.
"Then that makes all the justice you have done become sin." Ra's said maniacally, standing and walking past me, "Everything is a sin...So, are you helping when you sin?"
"Jesus died for our sins." I said, realizing the flaw in my plans, "Some actions are never justified."
"So, do you consider yourself a good-doer, or a sinner?" Ra's Al Ghul asked.
I was silent.
"Ah, I see you have sought to find me without a complete understanding of who you are." Ra's said smugly.
I shook my head and laid the bible on the desk, "Tell me." I said.
"I do not think you are ready." Ra's said, shining a sword.
"To defeat a monster, I had to become one, but that's exactly what you wanted, to control me." I explained, more to myself than to him.
"You are a great student." Ra's said, looking away from the sword to me, "Just like your mother."
"She wasn't here." I said.
"I knew her, her spirit..." Ra's sighed, "She could not quell the light of her heart. She tried to be my dark priestess but she fell in love with a mere mortal, the worst thing that ever happened to her. She had to be released."
"You loved her. She didn't love you, move on." I spat.
Ra's looked at me with hatred, "Now she is gone, forever." He said.
"Do you have any idea what you put me through?" I asked.
"Without strings and attachments, you were free to develop your powers to a point where the spells you cast are almost real." Ra's said.
"Almost?" I asked.
"They are only illusions, they are not real." Ra's said.
"So, I didn't kill?" I asked.
"Love is an odd thing; it corrupts, just like power. It spreads and infects and before you know it, you're trapped." Ra's said with disgust.
"My mom, this whole thing...what was it? Was it a cruel joke, or were these really my mother's?" I asked
"I do not lie." Ra's said, "You were treated the same way your mother was treated. She too knew the identity of Batman."
"My father is every liar. You are every evil. My mother is every mystery. I only have one question, what am I?" I asked.
"You, my dear sweet boy, are every power." Ra's smiled, "Join my League of Assassins and we shall take the world by storm."
"Never." I growled, "That's the one part of your equation that doesn't factor in, how you ever thought I would join you. I despise you."
Ra's looked as if he was studying me. I could feel his eyes penetrating me with an odd eagerness; something just under the surface was waiting to escape from him.
"I did bad things." I said, realizing what I had done, "Batman's your biggest mystery, the only one you can't solve yet."
"Bruce Wayne is Batman." Ra's smirked.
I looked at him, my anger still and calm as the relief washed over me, "Son of a Bi..."
"Yes, I'll leave you with my League." Ra's said darkly.
Suddenly, I was surrounded by ninjas, "I don't hate you." I said.
"What is that?" Ra's asked.
"I don't hate you." I said, "For everything you've done to my family, I forgive you."
"What do you know about forgiveness?! You no longer accept the world around you. You're open to it all? To just leave the side of vengeance to be just another mortal?" Ra's said quickly.
"You underestimate me. I don't love you, I feel the opposite..." I said, flashing him the book, "The opposite of love is indifference. I don't care. I forgive you, you're forgiven."
"You would forgive the man who killed your mother?" he asked.
"I said I would forgive, but I will never forget." I frowned, "I have so much to pay for. So many sins to atone for, but unlike you, I accept that and I intend to pay my penance."
"Do you dare to presume that you are better than the Beast himself?! Do you dare infer..."
"I do." I said, "You're not a threat to me. You no longer pose a mystery to me. You're just another criminal and I'm not justice. I was vengeance and I'm not anymore." I said, turning my back and walking away from Ra's and the League.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
As I stood in front of my mother's grave and placed a dozen roses at the site. The rain beat down on my face as I heard the swish of a cape and didn't have to look over to see that it was Superman. I had come full circle, but to a place that I had never been, which defeats the whole full circle theory, but it brought me here. My circle had brought Superman here too.
"I'm not going anywhere." I said.
"What?" he asked.
"It's over." I said, "No more vengeance to be reaped."
"It doesn't excuse what you've done." Superman said.
"I didn't do anything." I said quickly, "The murder's death was an illusion."
"Still..." Superman started.
"A criminal did get sliced into sushi, but..." I paused only to stare at him. He was...really super, "He lived."
"That's not justice." Superman said.
"Look, Cub Scout, spare me the Bills of Rights, I know what justice is." I said.
"I guess the rules could be bent in a way th..."
"What's it like?" I asked, "To be Superman, to be...indestructible." I asked.
"You don't look like you have many scars or scratches." Superman said, looking me over.
I looked down at the grave, "Then you're really not looking hard enough." I said.
"Are you going to be alright?" Superman asked.
I looked at him, "How do I answer that?" I asked.
"Can't you see things?" Superman asked.
I shook my head, "No. It turns out I can't even see what's in front of my face." I said quickly.
"You have an odd way of looking at things." Superman said.
"I can feel things." I said, moving closer and looking up into his eyes and kissed him passionately, pulling back, "That's how I can tell you liked that." I said, walking away.