Welcome to the 2022 April A to Z Challenge! Each day (minus Sundays) in the month of April will feature a short work of fiction based on a random word beginning with the corresponding letter of the day. Those random words will be provided by various friends and family members throughout the month. Today’s word, vroom, was provided by my friend, Andy. Each story is loosely connected to the one before but will make more sense if you read them all in order. To go back to the beginning to see where this madness began, click here…
The only sounds that echoed through the Batcave were those created by the hum of the enormous super computer and the grunts coming from Damian, who was sparring against a wooden dummy on the training platform. Bruce sat in a desk chair, staring up at the huge projection screen that displayed images of the Joker, Lex Luthor, Winslow Schott (aka, Toyman), and G. Gordon Godfrey.
Without turning his head, Bruce knew that his butler and oldest friend, Alfred, was approaching. “What do a clown, a megalomaniac, a former toymaker, and a controversial talking head have in common?”
Alfred set a tray with coffee next to Bruce’s chair. “Oh my,” he said, “does the Riddler have you stumped again?”
“Again?” Bruce cocked an eyebrow. “When has he ever stumped be the first time?”
From a distance, Damian shouted, “What about when he pretended to go legit?!”
“His hearing is too good for his own good,” whispered Bruce before continuing his conversation with the old butler. “In the same day, all four of these known criminals were witnessed in or around Schott’s abandoned toy factory. Superman put a stop to Toyman’s kidnapping scheme, but not before Toyman met the Joker waiting for him inside the factory.”
“I certainly hope this story ends with Clark apprehending both of those psychopaths,” said Alfred.
“Unfortunately, that’s not the case,” Bruce sighed. “While Clark was making sure the hostages were safe, Joker and Toyman went underground. Literally. All of the underground lead pipes kept Clark from being able to scan the area for them. Then, several hours later, Luthor and Godfrey arrived in a limousine. They were seen going inside the factory, then exiting only ten minutes later.”
“Coincidence?” Alfred asked.
“I think not.”
Just then a side monitor began to flash a stylized JL on the screen. Bruce pushed a button that opened the Justice League’s emergency audio channel. “Jordan to Batman, come back.”
“I read you, Hal,” said Bruce.
“Kyle and I just had an interesting conversation with Ganthet, one of the Guardians of the Universe.”
“Darkseid is making his move. Soon. We need all hands on deck,” Hal said. Bruce detected a slight tremor in Jordan’s voice. Knowing the threat that Darkseid represents, he knew that fear was an appropriate response. And it really says something when a Green Lantern is feeling the fear, considering a Lantern is chosen for his or her ability to overcome great fear.
“Reach out to Superman and Wonder Woman. I’ll alert the reserve Leaguers and the Titans. Have everyone who is able meet at the Hall of Justice in two hours.”
“You got it, Bruce. Jordan out.”
Bruce stood from his seat and turned toward the training platform, ready to order Damian to suit up. He was surprised to see that his son was already attaching the cape to his Robin costume. “Can I drive?” asked the Boy Wonder.
“You’re ten years old,” said Bruce as he pulled a cowl over his head.
“Your point being?”
“Sorry, I was unclear.” Bruce walked past Damian toward the Batmobile. “The no was implied.”
“You know I was capable of piloting a helicopter when I was seven.”
“An impressive feat,” said Batman, “but Batman drives the Batmobile. When you are Batman, you can drive.”
“Noted,” said Robin as he jumped into the passenger seat.
Batman fired up the Batmobile’s engine. Now the only sound that echoed through the cave was a deafening VROOM. The Dark Knight floored the gas pedal as he considered the days ahead, knowing that a dangerous battle was on the horizon.
These characters are not my own. Batman, Robin, and all related characters are the property of DC Comics. This is a work of fan fiction and is just for fun. Please don’t sue me.