Batman visits the projects.

Gotham City, 1 am. The Batman, Gotham's guardian, is patrolling an inner city projects. Station Park is its name. The police fear it, the gangs own it, and everyone else either doesn't know or care about what goes on here. Gun fire erupts! Four teens run from the nearby Basketball court where they were playing a game. Twelve year old Jamal Jenkins doesn't run. He fearlessly or perhaps foolishly watches the scene unfold. The Batman takes a moment to admire the young mans naive bravery. Then he springs into action. He exits the sleek black roadster, affectionately known as the Batmobile, reaches for his his grapple gun and fires into the nights sky. Jamal stands in awe as the grapple hoists his 6ft2 frame onto the rooftop where the gunfire serenades the neighborhood with an all too familiar tune, violence. Batman goes to work. A punch here, a kick there, and the rest scatter. Batman, seeing the ring leader, corners him. The man, 5ft8, mid 30's with baggy jeans a hooded sweatshirt and boots stares up him defiantly. Batman shouts who do you work for? Give me a name. He inches forward. Suddenly Batman hears a screeching, lookout! Which comes from Jamal. The Batman is struck from behind by a new assailant. As he stammered on hands and knees on the broken glass filled and beer stained rooftop floor, a crowbar is raised above his head. As the young heartless attacker prepares the final blow, he's hit with .....a basketball. The attacker turns to see Jamal on the roof, winded from running, but prepared to fight for his community, for the Bat. This moment is all Batman needs. He quickly dispatched said attacker with a move so quick Jamal could barely see it. Once again Batman takes note of the fact that Jamal is cool under pressure. But no Thank yous are given. He merely dives off the roof using his cape as a parachute. When Jamal reaches the street, the batmoblie is still parked and Batman is inside with the rooftop open. Jamal walks up and says with a grin, nice moves. How did you learn to fight like that? In my line of work, you pick things up along the way batman says. Your a tough kid. Handled yourself well. Better than any of these kids around here. Hey... it's like you said, you pick up things along the way. What's your name? Jamal. Where are your parents? Mom's at work, dad doesn't live around here. We'll you'd better get back home. I've got shoot outs all over this area and I think there just a distraction for something bigger. So I'd rather you be somewhere safe. Or I could help you solve this thing, says Jamal. I know this area, plus I'd be safe with you. Batman pauses.... Get in. As they sped down the road at speeds that would make your average lead foot driver blush, the glove compartment opened, Jamal looked at Batman, batman nodded and Jamal reached in and grabbed the garment. It was a Robin uniform. The Batman must have hit yet another button, because suddenly they're seats were separated by a partition that emerged from between the seats. Jamal's windows began to tint until it was pitch black. Now with his identity protected, he changed into his new digs. He could still hear batman slightly behind the wall. He seemed to be talking to a british man. A video monitor switched on, Jamal looked over in batman direction, but the wall was still up. A brief video ran that seemed to be giving him a crash course on self-defense and detective work. Jamal watched and listened very carefully. Later they arrive at an abandoned factory once owned by the Acme Company of Gotham City. Batman deduced this asthe location. Whoever is behind the sudden drug related violence, with all or most of the incidents occuring near this area, it must be the place. Batman and Robin exit the vehicle, Batman says qiuetly but firmly, "Stay by this door...If I need you, I'll call you. He points to the radio that Jamal hadnt realized was attached to he outfit. He looked at the radio and said "how does this thing wor..", but batman had already disapeared inside of the building. As batman made his way through the dark building, he heard machinary at work, and men talking. There was an old wood floored walkway that seemed to lead to where the voices were coming from. Batman followed slowly. Below him he saw a large vat of foul smelling chemicals. Several young men from the neighborhood were working. And a very large man stood in the shadows giving instructions. Batman knew the voice before he stepped into the light. But when he did, it was confirmed. BANE! When Batman takes another step forward, a piece of the wooden plank under his feet breaks. Batman grabs hold of the railing and pulls himself up. But the pieces fall to the ground below, and Bane takes notice. He looks up, and his eyes narrow as he sees the Dark Knight above him. He orders his henchman to attack, but Batman is ready. Using his cape like a hand glide, he swoops down on the thugs, taking one out with a two legged kick. The 6 ft 10 Bane looked on as the Batman dispatched his men with remarkable skill. Batarangs flew, punches were thrown, as Batman moved like an acrobat. Taking on several henchmen in way that almost seemed choreographed. When the last man fell, Bane stepped forward. Batman stood ready to engage him. At that moment they turned around at the sound of footsteps. Robin! shouted batman. "Another robin", says bane, "after I kill the Bat you can work for me". "You've been pumping drugs into this neighborhood.. why?! Said robin. Because..I've been experimenting with my venom formula, said bane. Before the formula is ready I need Guinea pigs to test it for me. Jamal lunged forward. "No robin" shouted batman. He turned his head back at bane. Only his white eyes and his silhouette visible. He's mine!  They size each other up. Bane is first to swing, batman ducks it and follows with a kick to bane's mid section. No affect, bane grabs Batman's foot and hurles batman into the air. The batman tucks his knees, completes a double back flip and lands on his feet about 10ft back. Crouching, he runs full speed toward bane. Bane opens his arms to grab him, but he slides between his legs and jumps on banes back. Batman reaches for banes venom supply. As his hand reaches out for the tube, a larger hand grabs his at the wrist. " Gotcha " Bane says. He pulls batman in front of him like a rag doll, puts him in a bear hug and begins to squeeze. Robin! Batman yells, his venom tube, pull it loose! Robin can't be seen.Your robin is a coward..He has abandoned you". Don't bet on it! Robin shouts as he lands on bane from above. He pulls bane's venom tube loose. No! shouts bane. Yes! shouts batman. With bane's strength fading fast, batman delivers a knockout punch. Later, batman and robin speed away as the police take the bad guys into custody. Jamal, now back in his civilian clothes says" You never said what happened to the other robin. He's taking some time off. But he'll be back soon. Oh, says Jamal," then I guess you wont be needing me". Batman will always need a robin. I don't know when I'll need you, but when I ready. Man, I'm always ready. End.


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