"The Meek": In response to a worried message from Dr. Leslie Thompkins, Batman calls back to warn that he believes some of the patients that missed appointments with her recently might have been murdered by a killer in Leslie's neighbou
- I can't fix this city in one night... but I can find one killer.
- — Batman
Synopsis for "The Meek"
In response to a worried message from Dr. Leslie Thompkins, Batman calls back to warn that he believes some of the patients that missed appointments with her recently might have been murdered by a killer in Leslie's neighbourhood. Though he isn't sure just how many victims there might be, he asks her to warn her patients and send him their addresses.
Elsewhere, a grave digger receives his meagre paycheck, expressing his dissatisfaction, though this particular graveyard is one of the lower-profile ones in the city, where those interred are typically unclaimed bodies. While his slovenly boss sleeps at his desk, the gravedigger sneaks off to his truck and dumps the corpse of the woman he murdered the night before into a fresh grave, where she will go unnoticed.
Batman has been distracted of late. The police have turned against him, the Joker is still missing, Selina Kyle has graduated from cat burglary to being a mob kingpin, and Jim Gordon was sentenced for murder at Blackgate Penitentiary. With all that on his mind, Batman must shove it aside to focus on catching a killer. Even as he resolves to do this, the gravedigger kills another homeless man, leaving only his victim's dog behind.
Elsewhere, Dr. Thompkins manages to get hold of one of her patients to warn that he may be targeted for murder, but the killer is listening, too.
Having already determined that the killer is driving a red pickup truck, Batman follows traffic cams to trace the murderer to the alley where he killed the homeless man, where he discovers the dog, waiting for its master to return. Hoping the animal caught the killer's scent, Batman deputizes the dog in his search. Batman follows the dog to a wrecked office, where he spots two medication bottles pointing back to Leslie's clinic.
As Leslie attempts to send a mass email to her patients, she is attacked by the killer, who explains that he can't let her warn people. Unlike everyone else in Gotham, he doesn't want people to know about his crimes. He just wants to feed his appetites and disappear. And, he will kill two birds with one stone by killing her. Scowling, the woman warns that she is not Dr. Leslie Thompkins as he believes, and removes the disguise, revealing that it was Batman, deceiving him. Batman explains that as much the killer may want to remain invisible, he sees everyone.
After capturing him, Batman informs Leslie that it's all over. She wonders why the killer had targeted her patients, and Batman suggests that perhaps the fact that she treats people with dignity offended him in some way. Confused and troubled, Leslie looks to Bruce for comfort.
Batman then contacts Eric Border at Arkham Asylum to have the killer imprisoned there in the Joker's cell. He wants to be forgotten, so what better way to punish him than to put him in the once cell that would get him the most attention? Batman thanks Eric for his help, admitting that Jeremiah Arkham would probably not have agreed to it. Nervously, Eric wonders if the Joker will be upset to learn that someone's in his cell. Deadpan, Batman responds that the Joker is always disturbed.
Using mud from the killer's truck, Batman locates the cemetery where he dumped his bodies. Sgt. Harvey Bullock notes that there are hundreds of unclaimed bodies in cemetery, making it hard to peg how many are actually murder victims, but the caretaker hired the killer a few years ago. This troubles Batman, who insists on watching every body exhumed to remind him of why he can't let himself be so distracted that he misses silent killers like these.
Appearing in "The Meek"
- Gotham City Police Department
- Penguin (Flashback only) (Cameo)
- Selina Kyle (Flashback only) (Cameo)
- Bat-Signal (Flashback only)
- This issue is reprinted in Batman: Graveyard Shift.