written by destinyawakened
“Are we going to a take that mask off him or not?” an officer asked from behind Gordon. He was standing behind the glass wall of the interrogation room along with a small group officers from the “catch Batman” task force the department had setup over a year ago. Gordon had his arms folded over his chest, shaking his head.
“He has the same legal rights as anyone else. We're waiting on his lawyer.” And his butler, Gordon thought. Bruce had asked him to call Alfred Pennyworth, his butler and the only man Batman trusted to mend his wounds. It was going to difficult to be explain to the other officers when he showed up, but Gordon had a few ideas.
“He killed five people! He doesn't deserve anything!” The officer was raising his voice to Gordon and moving towards him. Gordon stared at him with cold eyes, a glare he'd only given the Joker once in interrogation, and maybe a couple times to his kids when they were out-of-line. The officer stepped back, shut his mouth, and glared back at Gordon.
Stephens stepped between the two. “Jenkins, why don't you go take a breather?” he said to the younger man, holding up a hand between them. Jenkins nodded and walked to the door and out of the room. Stephens turned back to Gordon, suspicion evident in his eyes.
“Don't look at me that way,” Gordon said, turning his eyes back to the two-way glass, watching Batman's every move. He would have rather been in there with him tending his wounds the best he could until Alfred arrived. He was only disappointing himself with those thoughts, and it didn't do Bruce any good to be distracted.
“Sooner or later that mask has to come off.”
“I know that.” Gordon started. “But I don't think everyone in Gotham needs to know. Do you know what this is going to do to the man under that cowl?”
Stephens went silent. His face wore an expression that suggested he hadn't really thought about it. “Commissioner. He killed five men. Are we really showing him empathy?”
Gordon sighed,stepped closer to Stephens and whispered, “It's all a lie. One huge, over-done, lie.” He sighed and rubbed this bridge of his nose with his thumb and forefinger. “It was a cover-up for Dent. Harvey Dent killed those people.”
“Dent?” Stephens had a look of pure confusion on his face. “Why would Batman cover up for Dent?”
“To leave Gotham with a shred of hope that good people do exist,” was all Gordon said. He didn't feel he needed to explain himself any further than that. He was sure Stephens would understand. In fact, most officers would understand, but there were very few Gordon trusted.
“You know, don't you?” Stephens asked in a hushed whisper, leaning in closer to Gordon so no one could hear them..
“I don't know what you're talking about.” Gordon mumbled. He gave the other man a sideways glance and a hard stare that more than suggested the real answer to the question. “Get these men out of here. They don't all need to be here for this.”
Stephens nodded his understanding and started rounding up the stray officers and pushing them out the door. With-in minutes the room was cleared and Stephens was returning with two men behind him: Mayor Garcia and an elderly gentlemen that Gordon assumed was Alfred. Gordon shook the hand of the Mayor and with Alfred, who also added a little bow to his handshake out of politeness. Gordon noted that Alfred looked pale, high strung, worried – much the way Gordon was feeling himself. Alfred watched Batman through the glass and Gordon could practically feel the ache radiating off the man. Didn't Alfred become Bruce's guardian when his parents died? Gordon couldn't remember.
Gordon placed a hand on Alfred's shoulder. “C'mon.” He lead the man past Stephens and Mayor Garcia, who both looked curiously at Alfred; they obviously hadn't pieced the puzzle together yet. And unless they had been to one of Bruce's parties they most likely didn't recognize Alfred at all.
They walked out the door, down the hall and to the door of the interrogation room. Gordon unlocked it with his key and pushed the door open. He held it open for Alfred, who rushed in and was immediately at Batman's side, examining the wounds the best he could through the Kevlar armor of the Batsuit. Gordon walked over, unlocked the handcuffs on Batman's already-naked wrists and placed them on the table. Batman looked up at him and nodded his head, and Gordon knew what it was he was agreeing to. He was going to remove the cowl; he had no real choice, he was wounded and sooner or later it would need to come off anyway.
“It's just Alfred, Mayor Garcia, Stephens and myself,” Gordon said as he knelt beside the chair Batman was sitting in. “I'm not sure what's going to happen, Bruce.”
Alfred was already undoing some intricate buttons and latches that Gordon had never realized were on the suit. Batman raised his hands to his head and pulled the cowl off slowly, releasing a full head of sweaty brown hair. Bruce's eyes were dull and listless. The black paint smeared under his eyes had bled down his cheeks from the sweat, mostly likely caused by a fever from his wounds and the warmth of the suit. Gordon felt his heart skip a few beats; this was the first time he'd seen Batman take the mask off and actually show the face of Bruce Wayne. It was very, very real now. Everything. Of course he'd believed it before, but seeing it in front of him with all the details set it in stone...
Bruce lifted his face to look at Gordon, his eyes gleaming in the fluorescent lights. He motioned for Gordon to come closer. Gordon scooted forward and Bruce wrapped an arm around his shoulder, pulling himself to his feet, allowing Alfred to easily remove the armor. Bruce was very weak, and Gordon found he could barely hold on to him. Stephens ran into the room, confusion still plastered on his face, but concern evident as well. He went to Bruce's other side, taking his arm around his shoulder to hold him up. Gordon heard Bruce moan in pain, the pieces of armor finally off, leaving the billionaire in his boxers and dripping blood from several wounds to his shoulders, back, and ribs. Some weren't so bad, just mild cuts; others were worse, deep gnawing gashes. The wound from Monday was still there, but luckily untouched, to Gordon's surprise.
Stephens and Gordon lowered Bruce back down to the chair and allowed Alfred to continue cleaning up the playboy. Stephens left the room and Gordon got close to Bruce again. “I'm going to make this right. Some how.” Even though Gordon knew it wasn't entirely his fault, he felt responsible; he had let this happen. He could have ended it months ago. Hell, he could have never started it. It wouldn't have mattered; Gotham was just as bad as it had ever been, with or with-out Dent. Mob bosses went free, still roaming the streets. Nothing had changed. Everything Batman tried to cover up for nothing.
Bruce's head fell back against the chair, eyes closed. Gordon wasn't sure if he had passed out or was merely resting his eyes. Gordon touched his shoulder softly as he turned to leave, letting his fingertips glide down the playboy's bicep. Gordon was suddenly aware that it may be the last time for a long while that he would be able to touch him. Alfred looked up at Gordon as he reached the door and gave him a slight nod of thanks and understanding. Gordon returned the nod, walked out of the room and locked the door behind him.
He stood outside the interrogation room door for a few moments to gather his thoughts and feelings. Gordon was hardly the sentimental type of man, but right now all he really wanted to do was break down. He hadn't felt like this since Barbara took the kids and left. Why was it everything that promised him a happier life seemed to fall apart in his hands? Just when he was able to grasp at it, something would go awry and he'd be left with nothing. One too many times... Everything felt out of his control; but when had anything in Gotham really ever been in his control?
A sigh escaped his lips involuntarily. He walked the few paces down the hall to the next room. Mayor Garcia and Stephens turned to look at him. The Mayor turned his head back to the glass and continued to stare at the the two men in the interrogation room.
“Bruce Wayne...” he said. “Should have been obvious.”
“Had us all fooled,” Gordon replied. He walked over to stand with the two men and turned his gaze to the glass. Alfred had stopped the bleeding on many of the wounds and was stitching up some others. Bruce was barely holding himself up; it was only a matter of time until he passed out completely. Gordon was surprised he had lasted this long.
“He'll have to be locked up in Arkham until we can arrange a private trial,” the Mayor said. Gordon was surprised; he had been sure everyone would just want to lock Batman up and throw away the key. But the mayor was talking about a private trial, which meant he had some respect for Bruce Wayne and his need to keep his identity safe.
“I'll call to arrange a private room, if possible,” Gordon said. He wasn't actually sure that Arkham had private rooms, but with enough of Bruce's money he was sure something could be arranged. He knew some cover-up story would need to be thought of, otherwise people were going to begin to wonder why Bruce was even in Arkham. It meant that Gordon's job had just gotten a little harder. There were not many doctors or orderlies he trusted at Arkham to keep Bruce's secret. Gordon could tell he was going to be spending his time between Arkham and work. Just because Bruce had to be in there, didn't mean he needed to receive treatment –at least not right away. Maybe between himself and Stephens they could work out a schedule to keep an eye on Bruce and keep people away from his cell. Gordon thought he was being a little too hopeful. If only he could keep him at MCU. But that was a disaster waiting to happen as well. Every cop in Gotham wanted a go at Batman since he supposedly killed five people. No, Arkham was definitely the safest place for him.
“He trusts you, doesn't he, Gordon?” the mayor asked, pulling Gordon from his thoughts.
He looked at the mayor, a little confused at first; he wasn't really paying attention and had to think for a moment to catch up. “I don't know. Maybe. Yes.”
“Keep close to him. He might not cooperate with anyone else,” the mayor said as he walked around Gordon towards the door. “I'll be in touch once I get the trial arrangements made.” He opened the door and slipped out.
Gordon shook his head. “Please tell me we have leads on Doctor Elliot.”
Stephens folded his arms over his chest and shook his head. “Not a word. Not a trail. Nothing. Maybe Wayne knows where he is.”
Gordon narrowed his eyes and glared at Stephens in a sideways glance, “Mr. Wayne wasn't working with Doctor Elliot. He was set up by him.”
“What was he doing in that warehouse then?”
“Saving my life.”