"Batman Universe, Part 7": As Batman tries to introduce himself to Jonah Hex, the latter aims his revolvers at him and Hal Jordan, asking how the oddly-dressed strangers know his name. Taking off his mask, Bruce asks if he has ever met someone named Vandal Savage and Hex replies in the affirmati
Appearing in "Batman Universe, Part 7"
- Vandal Savage
- Black Order (First appearance)
- Alfred Pennyworth (Mentioned only)
- Jinny Hex (Mentioned only)
- Guardians of the Universe (Mentioned only)
Synopsis for "Batman Universe, Part 7"
As Batman tries to introduce himself to Jonah Hex, the latter aims his revolvers at him and Hal Jordan, asking how the oddly-dressed strangers know his name. Taking off his mask, Bruce asks if he has ever met someone named Vandal Savage and Hex replies in the affirmative. Batman gains his trust by stating he must have encountered advanced technology he couldn't explain about to anyone and that a Fabergé egg in possession of his great-great-granddaughter sent them into this time from the future.
Jonah tells Gary who's been accompanying him to leave the two alone and talks with them in private, stating it is likely true even if outlandish. Realizing they need to change their clothes, Jonah finds them something that suits his time. The two realize that going to the last place he saw Savage will take six days on horse, and Hal decides to use his Green Lantern Ring which only has 39 minutes of charge left, to transport all three to the place.
After recovering from the delirious effect of travelling with the Lantern ring for the first time, Hex takes them inside the mining town. Hal is however mysteriously transported away and Savage arrives on the scene to confront Batman along with his cronies.
Appearing in "Hush, Chapter Nine: The Assassins"
- Gotham County
- Washington, D.C.
- North Africa
Synopsis for "Hush, Chapter Nine: The Assassins"
This story is reprinted from Batman #616.
Batman rappels down from the Batplane and boards the company jetliner, Lexcorp-One. Once inside, he kidnaps Talia Head and takes her back to Gotham. He tells her that Ra's al Ghul will not tolerate a threat to his daughter. Talia points out two flaws with the problem: she and Ra's are not on speaking terms, and Batman would never hurt her.
Returning to Gotham, Batman leaves Talia in the care of Catwoman. The message is quickly received as Batman soon finds a scimitar sticking out from a computer terminal in the Batcave. Concerned, Batman hurries upstairs to check on Alfred. After seeing he's alright, Batman quickly deciphers the context of Ra's "message", but is confused to learn that he is being summoned to North Africa. Alfred theorizes that Ra's may be luring him away from Gotham, but Batman has no choice.
Later, Harvey Dent sneaks into the home of former police commissioner James Gordon. He tells Jim that Batman will need their help in resolving the current string of crimes. He also tells Gordon that the gun used to kill Tommy Elliot was Jim's old service pistol.
Batman arrives in Africa and meets with Ra's. The two engage in a sword fight, and Batman surprises Ra's by running him through. With Ra's incapacitated, Batman begins questioning him. Ra's is not responsible for the recent attacks on Batman. In fact, he wants Batman's opponent equally dead, for the person recently used and defiled one of the last Lazarus Pits.
Back in Gotham City, Lady Shiva breaks into Catwoman's penthouse by Ra's command to rescue Talia. She gets into a fight with Catwoman, and easily takes her out. To her surprise however, Talia turns the tables on her, smashing a chair across the back of Shiva's head.
Batman returns to find Catwoman has been healed by Talia. Talia says that Catwoman would have died if she had not returned, but decided to come back for Batman's sake. Talia kisses Batman and warns him that his mysterious opponent knows about his affection towards Catwoman and will use it against him. She asks Batman if Catwoman is worth the risk, and he silently answers yes.
Appearing in "The Gray Son"
- Mayor Hady
- Deputy Mayor Thomas Kavanaugh
- Nathaniel (Flashback only)
- Amelia Crowne (Flashback only)
- Burton Crowne (Flashback only)
- Gotham City (Flashback and main story)
Synopsis for "The Gray Son"
This story is reprinted from Nightwing (Volume 3) #9.
William Cobb thought his future was bright once he'd fallen in love with Amelia Crowne. He rarely met Amelia's father, given that for most of the year that he courted her, he had been busy with Haly's Circus. One day though, it became painfully clear that Burton Crowne did not approve of the pairing. When Amelia became pregnant, William was forced to sever all ties. She was made to marry someone else. However, his friend Nathaniel provided him with an opportunity. He was recruited by the Court of Owls, driven mad in their maze, and then trained to become a Talon.
His chest filled with knives, Nightwing is surprised to see that William Cobb has managed to escape the Batcave. Through gritted teeth, he urges Mayor Hady and Thomas Kavanaugh to hide in the vault on the fourth floor, and not come out for anyone. The Talon launches himself at Nightwing, and the two crash through the window of Gotham City Hall. He condemns Dick as a betrayer of his own blood. He challenges his descendant to impress him.
On the street below, the Talon easily repairs his bone fractures and mocks Dick. He mentions that he could see when Batman punched Dick in the Batcave. Despite being in stasis, the Talon could see everything. And most of all, he saw how Dick has become nothing but a second rate imitation of the naive Batman. Injured, Nightwing tries to put some distance between him and the would-be assassin. Unfortunately, his wounds are significant, and he collapses. The Talon drags him down into the subway system, explaining that it is necessary to learn that Gotham is not a place of choice. Much was sacrificed to create the future that Richard Grayson rejected.
As a Talon, Cobb had felt liberated. He had the freedom to make a difference, working outside the law to remove obstacles for the Court of Owls. To work in between the black and the white of Gotham. The Court provided the grey area he was seeking. In his own way, as a Talon, he could shape the future. He considered that the Court would need a way to shape the future continually into the future. To facilitate this, he broke into the Crowne estate and kidnapped his own son. He passed the child on to Nathaniel, and ordered that the boy be raised in Haly's circus in preparation for his legacy. This would be the Gray Son of Gotham.
The Graysons were bred to become the perfect Talons. None of what Dick does now matters or works. He is merely an imitation Wayne; a knock-off bat. With the Court of Owls, though, he could become the greatest Talon of all. Nightwing responds that plenty about Gotham has changed. For example, the need for insulated wiring in the subway system. He punctures the insulation in the pipes above them, spraying Cobb with the liquid nitrogen inside. As he succumbs to the cold, William Cobb warns that Dick would be better off embracing his destiny. Hoisting the immobile Talon over his shoulder, Nightwing responds that the one thing he does embrace is that destinies don't exist.
Appearing in "Cut Short, Cut Deep"
- The Mirror (Flashback and main story)
- Rupert Ansell
- Gotham City
- Sacred Hands of God Hospital
- The Hollows Cemetery
Synopsis for "Cut Short, Cut Deep"
This story is reprinted from Batgirl (Volume 4) #2.
Batgirl realizes that she has not fully recovered psychologically from the shooting that crippled her years ago. When the Mirror pointed a gun at her, she froze, and failed to save Detective Douglas Paulson from being shot to death, and failed to stop the leader of the Brisby Killers from being thrown out of the hospital window to his death.
The Mirror prepares to make his escape, but Paulson's partner, Detective Mel McKenna - who blames Batgirl for his death - points her own gun at the killer. She is unfortunately suffering from a likely concussion, and can't aim her weapon properly. She is forced to impotently shout after him as he leaves and Batgirl gives chase.
Batgirl vows to catch the Mirror, chasing him across rooftops and finally leaping down and kicking him from behind. Unfortunately, she misjudges her speed, and both of them are thrown off the edge of a building. Desperately, they both grip an outcropping gargoyle. Strangely, the Mirror seems to have unfinished business. Sympathetically, Batgirl reaches down to help him, but he reveals that she is on his list of intended victims, and wrenches her by the arm from her foothold, throwing her into a free-fall.
Desperately, Batgirl releases her Batrope, grappling onto another outcropping. Unfortunately, her trajectory brings her to street level, and she slams hard into the side of a moving taxi. Naturally, this angers the cab driver, and Batgirl is forced to drag herself up, nurse her cracked ribs, and shuffle away.
Back at the hospital, Detective McKenna refuses medical attention, despite being quite shaken. Eventually, Commissioner Gordon appears, and commands McKenna to allow the attending physician to look at her. He orders that she take mandatory bereavement leave and return after the department psychologist clears her. Before she leaves, McKenna warns that there will need to be a second warrant; one for Batgirl's arrest. The Commissioner is visibly shaken.
Batgirl follows Mirror's trail to the Hollows, an exclusive cemetery reserved for Gotham's rich and privileged. He senses her presence quickly, and calls out to her. She leaps out, but she is no match for him, and he lands a heavy punch in her gut. Knowing that she can't take another hit like that, Batgirl resorts to her wits instead, trying to tire him out by dodging his attacks. Charging him, she manages to steal his list from within his robes. He swipes it back from her hand, enraged that she would dare to look at it. Then, the sound of sirens fills the air, and before she can react, the Mirror is gone.
Without anywhere else to go, Barbara Gordon changes out of her costume and winds up at her new apartment. When her roommate Alysia Yeoh answers the door, she is surprised to see Barbara there, crumpled, wounded, and seconds away from blacking out. Barbara wakes in Alysia's bed. Alysia spares little time in drawing attention to Barbara's obvious injuries, and warns that she is one minute away from calling the police. Barbara assures her that she is not being abused, and is not a criminal - but she won't tell her what's really going on. Barely convinced, Alysia offers to make Barbara some soup. Awkwardly, Barbara asks to borrow something cute to wear.
Later, in her borrowed dress, Barbara has a date with Gregor, her physical therapist. He has worries about the ethics of dating a patient, but Barbara reassures him. They walk through the park, and he asks her why she doesn't talk about when she regained the use of her legs. Barbara responds that she doesn't believe in miracles, and wonders why - if someone is handing them out - she was a recipient. Gregor tries to assure her that some miracles do happen, and that her recovery doesn't have to come at a price.
Later, Barbara does some research at the library, following a lead she picked up on from Mirror at the cemetery. He had mentioned fire, and she assumes that it must have been significant to his reason for being there. She cross-references fires with people who match the Mirror's physical description, and finds the story of a federal agent, Jonathan Mills, who was the sole survivor of a car crash.
Batgirl heads to his apartment, finding that the windows have been rigged with alarm trip wires. The alarms seem to be deactivated, though, and she breaks in. Inside, she finds a veritable arsenal of weapons. Suddenly, the Mirror appears on a large video monitor and addresses her. He explains how he had been forced to watch as his family burned to death in the back of his car while he survived. He feels responsible, and believes that he should have died too.
The Mirror shows her a news clipping showing a man who collapsed on some train tracks, but was saved by a stranger. In response, the Mirror has placed a bomb on the train that the man rides to work daily - for a sense of closure. The Mirror plans to use whatever means necessary to bring an end to all miracles.
- No special notes.
- No trivia.
- Batman Recommended Reading
- Batman (Volume 1)
- Batman (Volume 2)
- Batman (Volume 3)
- Batman and Robin (Volume 1)
- Batman and Robin (Volume 2)
- Batman Confidential (Volume 1)
- Batman: Gotham Knights (Volume 1)
- Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight (Volume 1)
- Batman: Shadow of the Bat (Volume 1)
- Batman: Streets of Gotham (Volume 1)
- Batman Incorporated (Volume 1)
- Batman Incorporated (Volume 2)
- Batman/Superman (Volume 1)
- Batman/Superman (Volume 2)
- Batman: The Dark Knight (Volume 1)
- Batman: The Dark Knight (Volume 2)
- The Brave and the Bold (Volume 1)
- Detective Comics (Volume 1)
- Detective Comics (Volume 2)
- Superman/Batman (Volume 1)
- World's Finest (Volume 1)
- Nightwing Recommended Reading
- Batgirl Recommended Reading