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2. leaf and vine, Ollie/Dick

3. "Knockin' on Heaven's Door", Batfam

6. not a flaw but a feature, clark/zee

8. by halves, bruce, ollie

Knockin' on Heaven's Door

Date: 2013-03-31 05:55 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
~Thump Thump Tathumpthump Thurump~

"It sounds like there's more of them out there now" Dick sighed.

"Useless" Damian groused as he tossed aside the thermal goggles. "They generate no body heat. Grayson, how long must we remain here?"

~Thump Thump Tathumpthump Thurump~

"I see no reason why we cower behind these walls" Cass said, wiping blood off of her katana. "I was doing just fine out there on my own."

"Until you lost her!" Tim snapped. "If you were doing such a good job, then where the hell is she?!"

Cass stopped wiping and looked down at her feet.

~Thump Thump Tathumpthump Thurump~

"Arguing isn't going to help anything" Dick said, raising his voice. "Bruce said he wants us here in the Manor's command center until he figures out our next move. And we're not going anywhere until we hear from him."

"-tt-" Damian tutted. "We should be in the cave."

"Tim, I know you're upset" Dick said, ignoring Damian's suggestion and putting on his reassuring tone of voice. "I am too. But Stephanie is highly trained. She knows how to survive, how to handle herself. When we're able to, we'll go out and find her. For now, let's focus on what we can do, not on who to blame."

"I know who to blame" Tim snapped, sending a withering gaze Cass' direction before turning back to his terminal. "I've been trying to get a good look at the Manor grounds, but the smoke from the fires in the city is making satellite pictures worthless. Robin already pointed out why the thermal sensors are no good."

"So are the rest of your gadgets, Drake" Damian said.

"What we need" Tim continued, ignoring Robin's taunts, "is a physical assessment. We all saw how bad things were in the city. The fact that they're all the way out here at the Manor might mean they're on the move."

"Or it might mean that the whole problem is spreading" Dick said, completing Tim's thought.

"I'll head to the roof" Cass said hopping up and grabbing her night vision binoculars. She headed out, glad to put some distance between herself and Tim.

~Thump Thump Tathumpthump Thurump~

"The cave tunnels are still clear" Dick said, watching Cass walk out. "We can still make it out of here and to Blüdhaven by water when we need -"

"We're not leaving without her!" Tim snapped back. "I'm not leaving here without Stephanie!"

"No one is going anywhere yet" a voice interrupted from the computer. Bruce's cowled visage in the cockpit of the Batplane appeared on the monitor. His brow was dripping with sweat. "The city's overrun. The cops didn't stand a chance. When headquarters fell, Gordon refused to let me pull him out of there. He went down, guns blazing. I barely made it out myself." Bruce's image on screen was replaced with tactical maps while he continued his report. "I made a sweep over Blüdhaven. Dick, it's gone. So's Metropolis. Pockets of resistance are holding out as best they can, especially in the South. In the cities, the highest skyscrapers are full of refugees. But without some real help, they won't last long." The images of those cities flashed flashed red on Batman's maps. "Still no word from Batwoman or Flamebird?"

Dick shook his head.

"Oracle? Huntress?" Bruce asked. "Selina?"

"Nothing" Dick replied. "We listened to the battle at the police station. Since then, everyone's been radio silent."

~Thump Thump Tathumpthump Thurump~

~Thump Thump Tathumpthump Thurump~

The warriors in Wayne Manor stood silently. Bruce's face returned to the screen. "If this infection is spreading like we think, I'm not sure we'll be able to stop it" he said. "I'm trying to coordinate with the League but they're spread thin too. No one can find Superman. Word is he's still in Metropolis. I managed to get through to Green Arrow. He was on his way with a platoon of fighters to do what they could in Star City."

"These things are on the West Coast too?" Damian asked, hopping to his feet in surprise.

"Yes" Bruce replied. "It sprang up just as quick there too. The Green Lanterns are doing what they can to hold the lines, but even they are barely hanging on. They... Damian, they lost Rayner."

Robin blinked. For a split second, his shoulders slumped and his eyes looked moist before he regained his composure. "We have our own problems to deal with here" Damian said.

~Thump Thump Tathumpthump Thurump~

Tim cleared his throat. "Bruce" he half whispered. "Bruce, I don't know how to tell you this, but..."

"Did he die?" Bruce asked, cutting to the point. The question sounded so cold, so clinical. But the emotional weight behind it almost caused the room to burst. The silence was palpable.

"Twenty minutes ago" Tim finally answered. "And then he... he..."

"He turned" Dick said. "We have him restrained in his bedroom."

"Alfred was a faithful servant" Bruce said, "and a good friend. He doesn't deserve this fate. And he doesn't deserve to live like one of those things outside."

~Thump Thump Tathumpthump Thurump~

"Dick?" Bruce asked, his voice almost inaudibly cracking. "Will you -?"

"I'll do it" Damian said. "He served the Wayne family. It will be a Wayne that serves him this last time." He grabbed his sword from the nearby table and pulled it from its scabbard.

"I'll go with you" Dick said, putting a comforting hand on Damian's shoulder as they walked out of the Manor's command center. Damian did not object.

~Thump Thump Tathumpthump Thurump~

Tim looked up at Bruce on the screen. "What should we do now?"

"Stay locked down inside the Manor" Bruce replied. "Stay out of the cave. I don't know how secure it is. Help Dick with whatever he needs. I'm about to contact the League again and review our options. Until then, get someone on the roof. You need a physical assessment out there. I'll be back in touch as soon as I know something. Batman out."

As the screen went black, Tim could see the reflection of Cass standing behind him. She had returned during Bruce's last commands. Tim turned to face her. "Do you have something?" Cass' face was drained of all its color; her eyes were wide open. "What is it? What did you see?"

She walked over to a terminal and pulled a cord, plugging her gauntlet computers into it. "Look" she said.

"Are we cut off? Are their numbers more than we thought?"

"Look" she repeated. On the screen, Tim could see the Manor grounds from the roof. A horde of the undead shuffled through. Reanimated corpses trudged around, bumping into one another. Some snapped and clawed at each other; others seemed to wander with no purpose. Tim watched as Cass swept the area with her camera, then stopped.

On the screen, Tim watched as Cass focused in on one of the walkers. "No..." He heard Cass say. Tim watched in horror as Cass' camera zoomed into one shuffling walker.

~Thump Thump Tathumpthump Thurump~

"Is- Is that...?" Tim asked.

"Tim, I'm so sorry" Cass said.

~Thump Thump Tathumpthump Thurump~

On screen, Stephanie shambled through the crowd. The night vision tinted the scene green but the cape, the cowl, the utility belt, the blonde hair, it was all there.

"No..." Tim sobbed. "Noooo!" Cass walked across the room and tried to hold Tim. He slapped her arms away. "We have to open the door! We have to let her in!"

~Thump Thump Tathumpthump Thurump~

"Tim, you know we can't" Cass said. She tried again to embrace him. He punched her in the abdomen.

As Cass doubled over, Tim leapt for the controls. She recovered and grabbed his ankle. Tim fell forward, but twisted and kicked at Cass' grip.

~Thump Thump Tathumpthump Thurump~

Cass flipped up and grabbed Tim by the shoulders, spinning him around. She slammed the heel of her hand into Tim's chin. He fell backwards, losing his balance. "Tim!" she yelled. "I'm sorry! I'm so sorry! But she's gone!"

As Tim fell, he landed on a terminal. On the screen, the read outs and messages were replaced with live video; his elbow had activated the Manor's cameras. Every monitor in the room was filled with the same image - a dead Stephanie Brown slamming her fists into the front doors of the Manor and moaning. "Nooooo!" Tim screamed.

He flipped around, frantically searching for the right controls. "Tim, no!" Cass shouted. "You can't!"

"What has Drake done now?" Damian asked, walking back into the room. He stopped short as he saw the image on the screen. "Brown?"

"Is that...?" Dick asked.

~Thump Thump Tathumpthump Thurump~

"We have to let her in" Tim said, panicking. "We have to save her!"

"Drake, you've lost your mind" Damian said.

"Tim!" Dick shouted, diving for the controls. "Do not open that -" Tim spun and kicked Dick away.

"She's just acting!" Tim said, typing in codes as fast as she could. "She's just pretending in order to fool those things. We have to let her in!"

"Tim, she's gone!" Dick said, picking himself up. "Think of the rest of us in here. It's too dangerous!"

~Thump Thump Tathumpthump Thurump~

"No" Tim said. "She can't be gone. I - I love her!" Tim punched in another string of codes. "We are meant to be together forever." He flipped one last switch.

"Drake, NO!" Damian shouted. But it was too late.

The video feeds showed the doors of Wayne Manor spring open and hordes of the undead pouring in. Snapping and growling, the walking corpses tore into Bruce's childhood home. Dick grabbed his eskrima sticks. "Form up!" he commanded. ""Stay tight! Protect each other! Don't let them surround you!" He charged out of the room. "Tim! Come with me!"

"Damian!" Cass shouted, grabbing her katana. "With me!"

Damian unsheathed his sword. "I will show no mercy!" he growled as he ran after her.

"Stephanie!" Tim cried out, ignoring Dick's orders. He ran towards the foyer as she stumbled in. "Stephanie, you're safe!"

The whoosh-crack of Nightwing's eskrima sticks breaking skulls could be heard from the dining room. His screams as the dead dragged him down echoed down the same halls he once played in as a child.

The swish-spat and swoosh-ping of blades could be heard from the kitchen. "Damian! No!!!" Cass yelled as the boy's pained death screams added to the cacophony of moans and guttural sounds. She refused to cry out herself as the dead took her too.

Tim fought his way to the foyer, pushing through the walking corpses until he saw her. "Stephanie!" he called out. He dropped his staff and ran towards her. What was once Stephanie Brown, Batgirl, growled and snapped as she looked up at Tim. He reached her just as her eyes flashed. "You're with me now! You're safe baby! You're safe!"

As Stephanie bit down and ripped at his shoulder, tears streamed down Tim's face. "We'll always be together" he cried.

"Nightwing, report" Bruce's voice could be heard over the speakers as the dead roamed Wayne Manor. "Dick, are you there? Black Bat, Red Robin, report. Tim? Cassandra, are you there? Robin, report. I need someone to give me a status report. The League is ready to respond. Nightwing, this is Batman. Report. Anyone...? Damian...?"

Re: Knockin' on Heaven's Door

Date: 2013-03-31 10:40 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Chilling! So good!

Re: Knockin' on Heaven's Door

Date: 2013-04-02 08:58 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
oh dear I have feels



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