26 Chapter 27 - Into the Pit...Again

OH, MY FUCKING GOD. I FORGOT ABOUT THE MCS WEAPON ENTIRELY LAST CHAPTER. FUCK ME. I hope yall can forgive me this once because I AM NOT re-writing that shit. 

 

IM SO STUPID. For the sake of things let's say that after spending so long on the dinosaur island without it he grew accustomed to fighting with his bare hands and hadn't thought about his weapon. 

 

OR that during the start of the fight it got smacked outta his hands somewhere alright ;-; 

 Also, sorry if the fight wasn't a blowout. Didn't want bro to bulldoze through Bane at his current level. 

(POV Talia) 

Things were less than ideal, and I found myself extremely conflicted. On one hand, I wanted nothing more than to take my child and ensure his safety personally, however, Stygian was still fighting bane. In the end, I dropped Damian off at Wayne Manor and left, though not before firing an arrow into their window to garner their attention. Rushing back to where I'd left Stygian, all I found was utter devastation, the floor, the ceiling...everything everywhere was covered in blood. Whose? That was anyone's guess. 

 

Following the trail of destruction, I soon came across what appeared to be a hole left by a bulldozer. More concerned than ever I rushed through the structurally questionable building until it led me outside. What greeted my eyes was the behemoth once known as Bane lying face down in a pool of his own blood and brain matter. Scanning my eyes around for any clues, I discovered bloody footprints leading from his body into the streets of Gotham. 

 

After a few minutes of following them, I found myself in an alleyway out of sight. As I peered into it, I found a trembling Stygian supporting himself with the alley's walls. Darting forward I helped support him, before speaking with a shaky voice. 

"I've got you; we're getting out of here." 

 

 

 

(POV Stygian) 

Opening my eyes, I found I was in an empty white expanse of white. 

 

"Back again, are we? So soon? We certainly look worse for wear." Said a voice, my voice. 

 

Turning around I saw a familiar figure, my reflection, though what it reflected was certainly an unfamiliar sight. On the left side of my face was a scar leading through my eye and down my chin. The eye itself could hardly be called one at this point, considering it was missing some of the key components, like an iris or pupil. In its place was a blank white unblemished sclera. Raising a hand, I found that I could still see through it, though it was like looking through a keyhole. The rest of my body was covered in multiple holes and gashes that appeared to have completed most of the healing process. Though, I wouldn't be surprised if they left scars as well. 

 

"Hm, worse for wear is an understatement. Why am I here again? What happened?" Not yet wanting to think about the relative loss of my eye, I inquired about my situation. 

 

Mirror me, as I'll call him placed a hand under his chin in thought. 

"Well, yknow that pain we felt when using our ability earlier? Well, that was our ability undergoing a bit of an upgrade. Don't fret too much, we can still use the other one, though it will be working a bit differently. Here, I'll show us." 

 

"Wait!" Eyes widening, I tried to stop Mirror me to no avail. 

 

Before my eyes, the sclera of both his blind and working eye turned pitch black while the iris within the right turned its signature blood-red. Then from out of nowhere he attacked me. Following him with my eyes I attempted to dodge his attack, only for him to appear behind me like a ghost, mounting my shoulders and jabbing his fingers through my ears. Gasping for breath as though it were all a dream, I found myself completely unharmed while he stood in the same spot as before. 

 

"After experiencing it first-hand I doubt I need explain further?" Mirror me chuckled as his eyes returned to normal...well, my new normal. 

 

Seeing no refutes from me, he continued. 

"Good, though I should tell us that ability only works for our working eye. Our other one has been weakened quite a bit. However, as I said, don't fret. We can still use an edited version of that fear ability of ours with the left eye. See?" 

 

Once more without any warning, I saw his eyes change, though this time it was just the blind eye that turned pitch black. When it locked onto me, it was like being pulled into another dimension. Suddenly our white expanse had turned pitch black and from within the darkness, one eye after another opened up. Soon they were surrounding me from all sides. As quickly as they'd opened, they closed, and I appeared right back in the white room. 

 

"Alright, that's enough demonstration for us. Let's go get some real field testing with it! Oh, I should warn us, I'd keep our right eye covered until we're expecting to use it. It's taken a while to recover from your initial overuse of it. Besides, we don't have total control over it at the moment, and wouldn't want to have any repeats of certain events, would we?" My mirrored self with a heavy voice. 

 

With a wave of his hand my vision swam, and I found myself within the comforting embrace of the Lazarus Pit. Ah, no wonder I seemed to have healed so much. Submerged beneath the black waters I could make out the presence of numerous figures arguing vehemently about something. With a sigh, I began to surface, rising to my feet and directing my gaze at the hundreds of shadows filling the throne room. 

 

The instant my form appeared a surprised Talia bolted toward me, whilst Ra's signaled for some shadows to bring me a robe. Stepping out of the pit I spoke, 

"I hope you're alright Talia, thank you for not letting me die in an alley." 

 

With a shake of her head, she bowed toward me. 

"Please, I'm only alive because of you. There's no telling what Bane would have done if he'd gotten his hands on me. Forgive me for being insensitive but, your eyes...are you-" 

 

"Blind? Partially in my left, though it's nothing I can't grow accustomed to. As for my right...it's not safe for me to open it." As I said this, I saw Ra's rise from his throne. 

 

He approached me with a serious expression marring his face, not stopping till he was a foot away. 

"Talia tells me she told you about Bane and his...infatuation with her. That you, in a fit of rage, went out to exact judgment upon him. According to her, you and Bane engaged in a bloody brawl which ultimately ended with you snapping his neck, though not without consequence. Tell me, do you have designs for my daughter? To take such an aggressive course of action, surely you-" 

 

"No, not at all. I consider Talia a friend, arguably my only one. After hearing about the situation regarding Bane and your decision to simply exile him...I felt inclined to right that wrong. After I became heir, you told me I'd have to earn my keep and make my own renown, so what better way than killing the man with the title Bane." Stopping Ra's in his tracks I hurried to formulate a semi-believable lie to corroborate whatever Talia had said. 

 

Raising an eyebrow Ra's spread his arms wide, glancing at the various shadows before locking eyes with me. 

"Righting my wrongs now, are you? There was a reason I didn't kill Bane, but you're right I did tell you to cast your own shadow. I'll ignore that disrespectful statement for now, because you'll deal with the aftermath of Banes death yourself. I hope you're prepared." 

 

"That's perfectly fine, I was aware you had your own reasonings and was prepared to deal with whatever consequences would follow. Besides, what I gained...and lost from that fight was well worth it." Not breaking eye contact, I stood my ground against Ras's cold gaze. 

 

The throne room was dead silent as our stare down continued, the tension palpable as the shadows prepared for the worst-case scenario. Of course, they were unable to see that Ra's was putting on an act. I could tell he couldn't care less about Bane's death, if anything he was elated. Though, it was also true he seemed to have a reason for not killing him. 

 

Taking a step closer Ra's grabbed my hand before raising it high above his head, a smirk on his lips as he shouted, 

"Behold, Stygian the Basilisk, Bane of Bane!" 

 

The tense atmosphere was shattered by his words as the shadows in audience kneeled echoing his cry. 

 

"Hail Stygian the Basilisk, Bane of Bane!" 

 

"Hail Stygian the Basilisk, Banes Bane!" 

 

"Hail Stygian the Basilisk, Bane of Bane!" 

 

"Hail Stygian the Basilisk, Banes Bane!" 

 

Just like that the news spread of Bane's death, along with the first news of Ra's al Ghul having taken an heir...and this said heir having beaten Bane in a battle to the death. I'd said I was prepared for the approaching storm, but in truth, until the particle accelerator exploded, I would be severely lacking. 

 

 

 

(POV Talia) 

I'd lied to my father and forced Stygian into an impossible situation; I could only pray that he would corroborate my words and not slip up. Thankfully he seemed capable of lying at the drop of a hat, managing to convince my father and nearly me that he'd gone out of his way to kill Bane due to personal reasons. Following the rather intense exchange between them Ra's applauded his actions, going so far as to bestow him a new title. 

 

Off to the side, I could see the ever-bitter Nyssa foaming at the mouth, it seemed Stygian's continued growth and acceptance within the League wasn't sitting well with her. I could only hope she wouldn't do anything foolish. Clearing the throne room Father informed Stygian of what had transpired in the last month he'd been unconscious, before delivering some crucial information. 

 

"You should know, that Bane's father is a man named King Snake. While a formidable foe himself, it's not just he himself you have to worry about but the organization that backs him. Kobra Cult. We're eccentric, to say the least...but they, they're a cult. Absolutely filled with fanatics, each who believes in some ancient snake god and a prophecy in which he will liberate them and the world." In a single breath Ra's revealed information that even I and clearly Nyssa were unaware of. 

 

"Call them what you like, there is still a method to their madness. Each member, including their leader, explores certain mystic arts, that even I'd rather not touch. To make matters worse, they're in possession of an unknown number of specialized Lazarus Pits. News of your actions will spread to their ears, and a centuries-long peace will be broken. Perhaps it was inevitable, however, you will be the one to deal with the fallout. Anything regarding the cult and its vengeance is of your own making, so I expect you to handle your mess." With a firm voice, Father made his position known. 

 

Bowing slightly, Stygian was surprisingly accepting. 

"Fair enough. I'd ask more regarding this snake god stuff and your coincidental acquisition of my egg...but I assume you'll play a fool." 

 

Squinting his eyes, Ra's smiled a bit at Stygian words. 

"Believe what you wish. Just know that once Kobra finds out what you really are, more problems will arise. Any interactions you have with them will be handled by you and any compatriots you may have...excluding my daughter. Who knows, maybe you can gain something from this." 

 

Waving his hand, we were finally dismissed, and I hurried to Stygian's side. Entering his quarters, I assured him that I was alright and that Damian had been safely returned to his home before shifting to a more pressing matter. 

"After bringing you back, I received a report about another contract being put out for Damian. It was the same one your friend Harley used last time. With you in the pit, I decided to go see what had managed to happen since we'd just saved him." 

 

"You just told me everything was fine with him. So, what happened?" Stygian asked in confusion. 

 

"It wasn't Harley who placed the contract but that plant girl. Apparently, after we left some dangerous people came and took Harley. She's cashing in that favor you owe." 

 

 

 

(POV Stygian) 

Fuck. If I had to guess, Amanda had begun her collections for Task Force X already. I'd made a promise and I intended to keep it, so here I was once again in Ras's throne room informing him of my plans while throwing in a few half-truths. 

"I only found Bane due to a Crime Lord in Gotham named Harley Quinn, I agreed to owe her a favor if she led me to him. Funny enough it seems she cashed in the favor the same night just before she was kidnapped by A.R.G.U.S. I've been unconscious for a month but it's time I fulfilled my end. I intend to let them capture me and ensure she's still alive, afterwards, I'll need a bit of help actually escaping their clutches. I'm hoping I can count on you and the League for that." 

 

"As I said before, as long as it's not regarding Kobra you're still the Leagues heir. However I do have to ask, is she to be one of your shadows? Surely that's the only reason you're upholding this promise. Though I've heard of the Harlequinn, and she certainly doesn't fit the role, so I can't say I support this." Ra's inquired. 

 

Shrugging my shoulders, I was honest. 

"I honestly don't know. It's a mixture of a few things, I guess. First, I did make a promise. Second, Harley is amusing. Third, I might find more potential shadows in Task Force X ripe for the picking if I 'save them'." 

 

"Hmm, as you wish. Though we won't be able to just break into whatever prison they'll be keeping you in. Until you are issued your own mission and given leave, there won't be any rescue. We'll be waiting and watching until then. Word of advice, Amanda means what she says, so play nice until then. Rabid dogs get put down." With that final warning Ra's and I parted ways. 

 

 

 

(POV Amanda Waller) 

As I read through the files of our most recent additions to the Task Force as well as their current...conditioning progress, someone pounded on my office door. Frowning at the interruption, I shouted, 

"I hear you! Who the hell is it?!" 

"Flag, ma'am. It's important." He said as he pushed the door open, closing it behind him. 

 

"Sure, just come right in," I said sarcastically. 

 

Clearing his throat apologetically, Flag's voice took on a dire tone, while he handed me a piece of paper. 

"A certain serpentine individual was spotted just waltzing about Gotham. We're unsure of where he came from but after using our satellites, we've confirmed it's him." 

 

Raising an eyebrow, I took the photo from him. Sure enough, clear as day, it was the so-called 'Lord of Serpents' though his current state was less than Lordly. Why was he here? Foolish beast, you just made things much easier for me. Turning back to Flag, I clicked my tongue. 

"Well, what are you waiting for? Go get him." 

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