(Rated MA due to violence...some of it may be a tad gory but it is comic book violence, but a warning nonetheless. All characters are owned by DC & the picture of the Joker comes from here http://clubchevon.tumblr.com/post/6965814908/capn-crowbar-sorry-if-i-let-joker-fans-down-with )
Joker clipped Batman across the eyes with his crowbar, cackling like the madman he was. Batman snarled as blood trickled into his eyes. Joker flipped the crowbar in his hand like a cocktail waiter.
“So Bruce,” Joker laughed “Never picked you to be a Bruce. A Robert or a Steve, but not Bruce! So macho!”
“Shut up!” yelled Batman as he lunged forward, Joker stepped with a speed someone that old shouldn’t have and smashed the crowbar across the back of Batman’s skull. If his cowl wasn’t reinforced, Batman’s head would’ve cracked like an egg.
“This was the very same crowbar I smashed little Jason’s brains in with. Same one Damien used on me” Joker licked the metal from tip to tip “Delicious history! When Lexy called the band back together I thought, why not? One final dance with my beloved”
Batman shook his head and unclipped a pouch on his utility belt “You should’ve just faded away, you sick joke” Batman hurled some flash pellets into Joker’s face, dazzling the Crown Prince of Crime. Joker rubbed his eye’s as Batman stepped in and smashed a fist into his mouth, teeth shattering like glass. Batman grabbed a handful of Joker’s hair and pulled out a chunk of green by the roots.
“You fight like a girl!” yelped Joker swinging wildly, Batman parried and uppercut him, sending him onto the floor. King, from the Royal Flush Gang, tried to intervene but Batman was in no mood, a devastating kick dislocated his neck and sending him into a heap beside the Joker.
“Are you mad at me?” squealed Joker as Batman hauled him to his feet by the collar.
“I hate you more than anything!” growled Batman as he thumped Joker in the stomach several times, ribs cracking from the assault “You’ve hurt me so many times, in so many ways! I should have killed you in the alleyway! I should’ve dived after you when you broke into my cave and attacked my family. Stupidly, I’ve let you live for far too long!”
“Boo hoo!” mocked Joker as he shot acid from his lapel flower, catching Batman in the mouth. Batman screamed in agonising pain as the acid ate his flesh and lip. Batman’s hand curled into position and he threw it out with all the force he could muster, grabbed, wrenched and pulled back. The tiger strike ripped Joker’s Adam’s apple out, leaving a large bloody gaping hole in his neck. Joker saw his throat in Batman’s hand and started to chuckled, a rasping, gurgling laugh through the hole.
“I…win…” hissed Joker as he tried to stem the torrent of blood from the wound. Batman watched as his hated nemesis dropped to his knees and died. Batman roared like an animal over the din of lasers, sonic booms and superhuman blows.
“Do you want me to fix that?” asked the purple ray technician as Bruce Wayne lay on the table.
“If you touch my face,” stated Bruce as he lay on the table, his hand inadvertently caressing the acid burn around his mouth “I will break you beyond what this machine is capable of fixing”. The technician gulped and turned on the machine.
2048 Gotham Municipal Prison Transfer Station
Bruce looked at the wrinkly old woman, held tight by two Hawkmen. “And who is this?”
“She had no id sir” said the Hawkman on the right “But they call her Mrs Wesker?”
“Wesker? Are you related to Arnold Wesker?” asked Bruce.
“Gone” came the soft, crackled reply.
“What shall we do with her sir?” asked the other Hawkman.
“We’ll be fine, you can leave us” Bruce looked at the woman carefully waiting for them to leave. As the door slid shut “Peyton? Peyton Riley?”
She looked up through her old yellowed eyes and nodded.
“Last time I saw you was decades ago” Bruce tried to picture the beautiful but deadly Ventriloquist as she was, but the cold harsh reality was that the years had not been kind to her “The Hawkmen tried to move you to a shelter and you hit one with a bottle. Why?”
Peyton shrugged and then began hacking her guts up with a cough that sounded like sandpaper. Bruce handed her a handkerchief.
“Let us help you” he said “There is no need to be out in the cold”
“Gone” she muttered.
“I’m going to send you to a private clinic, get you cleaned up” said Bruce as he placed a hand on her shoulder.
“Oh form of man.” she smiled, her eyes glowed with unnatural fire “Arise the demon Etrigan!” The room exploded in hellfire and sulphur, Bruce leapt backwards using his desk as a shield.
“Time to pay for this and that,” sang Etrigan as he flung the desk away like it was made of paper “Time to die you silly bat!”
Bruce reached for a panel on the floor but Etrigan hit it with fire causing him to roll away.
“Many days and many evenings, Peyton waited patient for this meeting. The revolution sends its greetings, complete with fire and hellish beatings!” Etrigan leapt onto the fit but still seventy five year old, tearing into him with his claws. Bruce jammed a pen deep into Etrigan’s eye but the Demon cared little for the flesh wound.
“Hurt my eyes and hurt my face, I shall splay you across this place. Bones will shatter, flesh will tear! They won’t find you anywhere!” Etrigan sank his teeth into Bruce’s shoulder like a shark chomping on a seal. The old bat fought back valiantly but the enraged creature from the pit had the upper hand.
Bruce head butted Etrigan but it was like hitting concrete. Etrigan sneered and opened his mouth, breathing hellfire directly onto the face of Batman. Skin and tissue sizzled and popped as he writhed in agony. Etrigan squealed with delight and rammed his talons into Bruce ribs.
“They say the bat did have no heart. We shall see, as I take you apart” Ribs snapped as the demon pulled several from Bruce’s chest. The old man screamed and scrambled to his feet trying to put the flames out on his face, his chest shredded like he’d been had at by rabid animals. Etrigan licked the blood of his fingers and leapt in again.
“Is he o…?” asked Superman as he landed and then saw the carnage “Good god!”
Bruce Wayne, or what was left of him, lay in a protective bubble cast by Zachary Zatara. The room was coated in blood and bits of flesh and strange clumps of orange skin.
“What the hell happened?”
“Etrigan” said Zachary “But I’ll let flame head explain”
“How the hell did I know he was going to explode?!” moaned Firestorm
Superman grabbed Firestorm by the throat and embedded him into the wall “What happened?”
“B-batman’s emergency signal went off” gasped Firestorm “I was first on scene. Y-you wanna release me before I turn your hand to kryptonite?”
Superman shoved Firestorm further into the wall, his eyes flaring red “WHAT HAPPENED?”
“Etrigan was ripping Bats to pieces, the place was on fire. I transmuted the demon into water” Firestorm breathed deeply as he struggled under Superman’s grip “But he exploded, popped like a balloon”
Superman sniffed the air “Potassium”
“Water and potassium equals boom” said Firestorm “Demon dead, flames extinguished but someone planned this. My first guess would be, well, Luthor,”
“I snapped that bald bastard’s neck years ago” growled Superman
“Vandal Savage is still out there, as is Talia al Ghul” said Zachary "Plus this revo..."
“Why haven’t you healed him?” stated Superman
“I can’t! Etrigan’s demon claws have tainted Bruce’s wounds. I tried and I ended up doing more damage. Which is why he’s in the protective cocoon” said Zachary watching the angry kryptonian carefully “But if you gave me access to Fate’s helmet”
“No” said Superman coldly “Do what you can, but there is no way you’re touching my helmet. Purple ray?”
“The potassium has permeated his cells which refract the rays” said Firestorm
“CAN’T YOU TWO DO ANYTHING?” yelled Superman the force shattering the remaining glass in the room.
Bruce’s eyes blinked through the saline solution. Cyborg swivelled in his chair away from the large bank of monitors.
“Welcome back Bruce” said Victor “You’ve out for a long time. Now that you’re out of your coma, I can start on your new body”