tagCelebrities & Fan FictionGhosts of Nights Past

Ghosts of Nights Past

byAnn Douglas©

The following is a work of erotic fiction and includes scenes of sexual activity. It includes characters that are copyrighted by DC Comics. This story is intended for the non-commercial enjoyment of fans and should be considered a parody. No copyright infringement is intended and no profit will be made from the distribution of this story.

Author's Note - The characters in the story are based on those in the original comics (pre 1985) and not any current versions.

All characters in sexual situations are 18+


*****

The night air was charged with portents of an impending storm, one with a predicted intensity that sent most Gothamites hurrying home to safety. There was one, however, who raced not to the safety of home, but into danger. Clad in dark gray with a mantle of black, the tall, powerfully built man was the city's self-appointed guardian. Dedicated to his mission, some would say obsessed, he was hardly a man to let adverse weather stay his course.

Racing across rooftops and back alleys that he knew as well as the halls of his ancestral manor, the masked avenger thought it fitting that it should rain tonight of all nights. That the skies themselves should shed tears in memory of events now two decades gone. Of a searing moment in which he lost that which was most dear to him. The moment in which Batman had been born.

-=-=-=-

It was supposed to be a celebration, an early birthday gift for a son deeply loved by his parents. They had gone to see a showing of the classic movie "The Mark of Zorro", little realizing how the film, and the tragic events that followed, would shape the life of a child not yet even in his teens.

The neighborhood had then been called Park Row. It would be years later that it would acquire the more infamous name of Crime Alley. Many would mark the start of that transformation with that night. The night that Thomas and Martha Wayne died.

It had happened almost too quickly for the young boy to fully realize what was happening. The armed figure that had stepped out of the shadows with a demand that his parents give up their valuables. A careless motion by the thief had pointed his deadly weapon in the direction of the boy's mother, which prompted a counter-motion by his father that placed him between the two in an attempt to protect his wife.

Then came the ear shattering explosion of two gunshots, bolts of lightning that destroyed his world and killed the man that Bruce Wayne might be one day have been as certainly as they stilled the hearts of his parents. The thief had then fled, but not before looking deep into the eyes of the boy he'd just orphaned. What he saw there frightened him in a way that he could never have imagined. It was a fear that untold numbers of his fellows would come to experience in years to come.

The boy grew to be a man, armed with vast wealth and a lifetime of knowledge and skills. Combined with a vow made over the bodies of his parents, he would spend every day of his life fighting the good fight, so that no one would ever have to suffer the pain that he had felt. No matter the cost, no matter the sacrifice, Batman would keep his city safe.

-=-=-=-

Through his myriad contacts, Batman had learned of an attempt that was to be made to hijack a new and experimental power transfer system that had been jointly developed by S.T.A.R. Labs and Wayne Enterprises. A unit that, if it lived up to its designer's hopes, would go a long way toward solving some of the country's energy demands.

Coming to rest on a rooftop adjacent to the Gotham Energy Research Center, Batman used his dark cape to blend into the shadows and become virtually invisible. He watched with interest as a large fork lift moved the prototype from the loading dock onto the back of a flatbed truck that was scheduled to take it to S.T.A.R.'s Metropolis complex for further testing. Overhead, the light rain began to grow more intense and the sky echoed with the peals of thunder.

"It should be any minute now," Batman thought as he watched the workman who had secured the unit climb down from the truck and move inside to avoid the rain.

Almost as if on cue, three large men emerged from a parked car up the street, an assortment of automatic weapons in their hands. Clad in black outfits resembling those worn by military units, they carried an air of professionalism around them that confirmed the rest of Batman's information. That they were mercenaries led by a former Spetsnaz officer named Konstantin Kurakin who, since the fall of the Soviet Union, now worked for the highest bidder. The rent-a-cops employed by the Research Center were ill-equipped to handle adversaries of their caliber.

Following the silent hand instructions of the tallest of the attackers, who Batman quickly identified as their leader, the two soldiers for hire quickly took up positions on the opposite ends of the loading dock. So efficient were their actions that they overpowered the numerically superior guards without firing a shot.

Batman waited until the guards and truck driver had been herded into the safety of the storage shed before he made his move. If he had acted before, the odds were that one or more of the employees might be hit in a crossfire. That the masked man was also outnumbered and outgunned really never entered his mind. After all, it was really just a matter of perspective. Especially since he had visited the loading dock this afternoon as one of the co-sponsors of the project after hearing of the possible hijack attempt. In his wake, he had left a little surprise that he now made use of. Planning and preparation, one of his many teachers had drummed into him years ago, were essential to survival.

Dropping down on a silk cord from his vantage point, Batman pressed a dark gloved hand against a switch on his utility belt. The switch in turn activated a small, localized transmitter that sent out a high-powered signal that triggered two powerful shock and stun grenades as well as a matching pair of smoke bombs.

The explosions and sudden near black out conditions had the desired effect, throwing the two junior members of the trio off balance. Especially since they had begun to foolishly relax after thinking they had eliminated any possible opposition.

It would've been nice to have gotten all three of them at once, Batman thought as he hit the ground and sent a booted foot into the chest of the closest mercenary, but you had to work with what you could get. The force of his kick both disarmed the large man and sent him hurdling into a wall of storage drums, a wall that then came crashing down, knocking his target senseless.

A quick glance around the loading dock, which had already begun to clear of smoke due to the rain and high winds, brought no sign of the group's leader. So Batman turned his attention instead to an emerging threat as another black clad form leveled a machine pistol in his direction.

Rather than dive for cover, the Darknight leapt toward the danger and, in one fluid motion, dropped to the ground to effect a body roll that brought him back to his feet only two feet from the would be executioner. All the while, managing to avoid a cascade of weapon's fire in his direction.

It only took another few moments' work to put the second mercenary into the same condition as his compatriot. Although the worst this one would have to worry about was a broken jaw rather than the shattered extremities the first might have suffered. Then, not even pausing for breath, Batman turned to face the leader of the assault group, whom he had finally spotted out of the corner of his eye during his body roll.

Another powerful leap brought him to the back of the flatbed, where hidden behind the prototype, the former Spetsnaz had taken cover. Watching his carefully planned operation come apart in a dozen heartbeats, coupled with the harsh reality of what he had previously considered to be nothing more than an urban legend, was almost enough to break Kurakin's confidence in his ability to defeat any enemy.

But like any good soldier, the Russian fell back on his training and under normal circumstances, that might've been enough. Too close now to make use of his gun, he instead met Batman's charge with the same bloodied blade he had carried with him in Afghanistan.

The weight of the blade in his hand returned his confidence, since he was both a deadly knife fighter as well as an expert in a half dozen forms of hand-to-hand combat. But the man in gray and black he now faced had spent a lifetime learning his craft from experts the world over, and they included all that Kurakin had learned as well as a dozen more. While not every blow the Russian attempted was blocked, the most deadly ones certainly were. Just as most of the American's counter blows seemed to find their target and strike where they would have the most effect.

Not even the full force of the storm, which had chosen that moment to strike, was enough to break Batman's concentration. Which was why, when the very air between the combatants exploded in front of him, he was taken by surprise as he rarely was. Against all the odds, lighting had hit the truck and the large prototype on it. In less time that it would take to describe what had happened, the vast amount of natural energy charged the transfer system, overloading its safety limits and causing it to overload, releasing the enhanced energy surge in one blinding burst.

The explosion threw Batman and Kurakin in opposite directions with both landing hard on the pavement. An action that probably saved their lives as the unleashed energy reduced the truck and its cargo to twisted slag. Stunned, it took Batman a few moments to catch his breath, but as soon as he did, he didn't even wait for his head to fully clear before taking off after his prey, racing down the only street he could've taken.

Gotham's Guardian quickly covered the next block and a half in record time, sure that the Russian couldn't have had that much of a head start on him. He was running on instinct, twisting and turning according to the mental map he carried in his head. A map that suddenly failed him as he shifted to his left to find a street that shouldn't have been there.

A look of disbelief filled his face as he stopped and looked at the unfamiliar street sign in the once again light rain. For the first time in his adult life, he was lost in his own city.

"Kane St?" he repeated as he looked at the street sign a second time. "This wasn't here a week ago." a puzzled Batman added as he considered that the explosion might have injured him more than he'd thought.

It was a consideration that he didn't have a lot of time to dwell on as, first a gunshot, then a loud scream filled the air. No matter what his condition, a call for help wasn't something that he could ever ignore.

"That couldn't have been more than a block away," Batman thought as he unfurled a batarang and again took to the rooftops.

Whatever the street names, the Caped Crusader located the source of the cry with ease. Below him were two muggers holding guns on a young couple. The woman had screamed when one of the gunmen had fired a shot that grazed her escort's arm after he had refused their demands.

Faced with a replay of his own tragedy, the reason he had come into being, Batman went into action without hesitation. Dropping down on one of the two criminals, he savagely slammed his elbow into his face, causing the not yet even twenty year old's nose to break and spout blood. The distance between the pair had been too much to take both of them down at once, so he whirled around to face the new peril even as death again stalked him at close point range.

Suddenly, unexpectedly, the gunman hesitated in pulling the trigger, freezing instead with a look of horror on his face. A moment of indecision that was all Batman needed to close the distance between them.

"No, you're dead, everyone said you were dead," he cried out in the last seconds before the impact of a gloved fist robbed him of his weapon. "It was even in the papers."

A second punch was already in motion to rob the thief of consciousness as well, but the frightened young man beat him to it as he fainted dead away. Batman had spent his career exploiting the cowardice and superstitions of criminals, but this was way over the line.

"He acted as if he'd seen a ghost," Batman said as he turned his attention from the now prone pair to those they would have robbed without pause. To his confusion, the expression on their faces as they ran away from him wasn't all that different.

"Perhaps he has," a woman's voice said from behind the black-cloaked hero.

-=-=-=-

Faced with the possibility of a new threat, Batman whirled around, ready to face anything. Anything, that was, except for what actually confronted him.

"Oh my God!" Batman exclaimed under his breath as, for the second time in the last five minutes, he raised self-doubts about his mental capacity.

Standing a dozen feet in front of him was a tall, dark haired woman, at least fifteen years his senior. She was garbed in a bright yellow and red costume with her face partially covered by a pointed red face mask. On her chest was a symbol he knew all too well, for it was one he called his own.

As the shock washed over him, Batman now felt like he was seeing a ghost. For the woman standing there was an older version of someone he knew to be dead, whose funeral he had personally attended. In was only after he accepted the reality of what he was seeing that he finally understood what had happened.

"This isn't my world," Batman realized as he allowed himself to relax his combat stance. "Somehow, I'm on Earth 2."

From his adventures with the Justice League, Batman was well aware that there were alternate Earths in different dimensions. One of these was Earth 2, a world that mirrored his own in many ways, but still had some significant differences. It was the home of the legendary Justice Society of America.

On this world, many of the heroes he knew had similar, if not identical counterparts, most which had started their careers in an earlier time. It was also a world that had seen its own Batman fall a few years before, giving his life to save the city he loved.

"Assuming the costume you're wearing is real," Batwoman said as she stepped closer to get a better look, "you're a long way from home."

At first, Batwoman just assumed that the man in front of her was an impostor, someone wearing the mantle of Gotham's deceased champion. Then she noticed the subtle differences in the uniform, the more modern utility belt and the golden halo around the bat symbol. Differences that only a handful of people in all the world would've known about.

"The costume is real," Batman said as he went on to explain how he believed he came to be there.

The woman in red and yellow listened intently as the younger man explained his theory that the energy discharge during his fight at S.T.A.R. Labs had opened up a dimensional portal and threw him through it. The only question was how did he get back?

"Science has never been my strong point and this is all pretty much beyond me," Batwoman said. "I think I'm going to need some help with all of this."

-=-=-=-

Two hours later, after the would-be muggers had been turned over to the Gotham PD, Batman was faced with his third shock of the night. The help that Batwoman referred to came in the form of a face that was also familiar, yet different, to the man under the cowl. Only now it was that of a fully-grown man only two years younger than Batman, and not the boy he had taken in and raised as his own. The costume the man wore was an adult version of the red, yellow and green Robin costume, for on this world, Dick Grayson had never become Nightwing.

"It looks like your theory was right," a maskless Robin said as he shut off the diagnostic machine he'd used to examine his unexpected visitor. "There's a residual energy signature of some kind in your body that I don't recognize. The good news is that it looks to be steadily decaying. I would venture to guess that when it drops to zero, you'll automatically return to your own Earth."

"That almost looks like Zeta radiation," the equally cowless Batman said as he glanced at the computer readout while he pulled his form fitting shirt back on.

"Zeta radiation," Robin said as he shut down the equipment, "I'm not familiar with that."

"I wouldn't expect you to be," Batman replied, "it's pretty rare." he added as he went on to explain. "On my own world, a man named Adam Strange discovered he could use a teleportation beam based on Zeta radiation to travel to a world called Rann in the Alpha Centauri system. When the radiation wears off, he automatically returns to his point of origin."

"Interesting," Robin said.

"Could you tell how long it's going to take to wear off?" Batman asked.

"Based on the rate of decay," Robin answered, "I would say no more than two or three days."

"What about using the JLA/JSA transporter to send me home sooner?" Batman inquired as he thought of the device used by his associates to travel between worlds.

"Given this Zeta radiation, as you call it, in your body, I'd rather not take the chance," Robin offered his opinion. "But you can run my findings past the other scientists in the Society if you like. Most of them have much more experience than I do in trans-dimensional travel."

"No need, chum," Batman smiled, "your word has always been good enough for me. I can wait a few days to get home."

Robin stiffened at Batman's familiarity. It might have been meant to convey a sense of appreciation for his help, but as it was, it only served to accent what the Earth 2 hero had been feeling since his appearance. That this Batman was a living reminder of what he had long since lost. His reaction to the words, though unvoiced, wasn't lost on his guest.

"I guess we just need someplace for me to stay until I can go home," Batman said, realizing that it would be uncomfortable for Robin if he were to stay here in the Batcave.

"You're more than welcome to stay at my apartment in town," Batwoman, who had also removed her face mask to be more comfortable, suggested.

"It might be safer here in the cave, or up in the Manor," Robin replied, putting aside his discomfort with the idea, "we run the risk of someone recognizing him. After all, Bruce was a public man in this city for decades."

"And most people would remember him as a man in his fifties," Batwoman pointed out. "So I hardly think anyone is going to look at him and make the connection. At worse, if someone actually did, I could say he was a younger cousin or nephew. In fact, didn't Bruce actually have a cousin who looked like him almost enough to be his twin brother."

"Yes, and interestingly enough, his name was Bruce as well, they just had different middle names." Robin admitted.

"Then it's settled," Batwoman said in a tone that put an end to the discussion.

-=-=-=-

The late morning sun hung high in the sky as Bruce opened his eyes and returned to full consciousness. It took a few moments for him to remember where he was, the surroundings being so unfamiliar. Then it all came flooding back in an instant.

Riding on the back of the Batcycle, they had arrived at the high-rise in which Kathy Kane lived shortly before dawn. The events of the last hours finally caught up with the world-hopping adventurer and he was more than happy to accept the offer of the guest room. Sleep had come almost the moment his head had hit the pillow.

It had not been a totally tranquil sleep, however, as his mind continued to consider the history of this Gotham and how it differed from his own. At the top of the list was the fact that early in his career, his older doppelganger had married Selina Kyle, the Catwoman, after she had paid her debt to society and given up a life of crime. On his Earth, Bruce had more than once found himself intimately involved with the Feline Fury, but marriage or even a long-term relationship had never been an option.

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byAnn Douglas© 3 comments/ 3085 views/ 5 favorites

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