saga/title/fandom: Identity chapter 10 (Batman Beyond)

author: Girl_Gambit

rating/genre:(PG-13) - Drama/Romance

warnings: violence, language

summary: Terry hasn't had time for himself lately, things seem a bit of a mess. It's a T/M fanfic - but i don't hate D

comments/disclaimers: I don’t own any of the characters, they were the creation of DC comics. This is a fanfic inspired by the Batman of the Future series, credit to the creators.Author’s note: This is my first Batman fanfic, it’s quite a daunting task, but I look forward to any constructive criticism on improving my writing as I’m an amateur at this. I haven’t been watching the show that long but it made an impact on me enough to want to write something. I apologise for any mistakes.

Chapter 10 The Mother Of Mischief

Mischief removed his mask discreetly in an inconspicuous part of his residential area as he neared his apartment block. He was feeling elated and even the thought of returning home to find his mom was still out on the town was not going to upset him. He entered the apartment, expecting his mom to be out but could hear some shuffling inside. He walked round to the kitchen to find his mom in her nightgown making some cocoa. She looked around on hearing her son enter. She smiled on seeing his surprise at her being there.

“Want something to drink sweetie?” she asked warmly. Mischief almost laughed at the irony in her words.

“No, I’m tired, I’m going to bed.”

Mischief was just turning to walk away when he did a double take. His mom’s eyes looked a little red and she had the face she always had when she’d been crying. He started to feel anger surfacing as he looked at the woman he called his mom.

“Some drugged up guy hurt you didn’t he? Who was it? I’ll get him Mom, I’ll make him pay!”

“No, I told you, I work in a safer domain now. It was…”

“I know you’ve been seeing someone Mom, I know you’ve been working later than usual…this guy, if he’s hurting you, I’ll find him.”

“No, Johnny treats me well, he really cares about me!”

“Well he’s got a sick way of showing it! Why don’t you just quit this dead end job and get it together?”

“You don’t understand, it wasn’t …”

“I understand Mom. You let men treat you like your some cheap piece of meat. Tonight, this Johnny probably got aggressive, but you’re sticking up for him. What the hell am I expecting? I couldn’t really expect you to get a regular job and be a normal mom, ‘cause then my life would be pretty damn good and that would be just a little too close to perfect for my life, wouldn’t it?”

“What can I do? Your daddy is somewhere out there doing I don’t know what and I’m here trying to save up so you can have a future, maybe get you into university if you want it, plus this apartment and everything in it doesn’t come for free!”

“Alcohol doesn’t either. Ever think of giving up the bottle Mom?”

“So what? I have a few drinks, that doesn’t mean I have a problem! When you’re working and you’re paying your way, then you can tell me how to spend my money!”

“Oh don’t worry mom, I can take care of myself just fine.” He took a gold necklace out of the pocket of his new jacket and threw it onto the kitchen table. “Something towards the rent Mom. Hear that Mom? Not towards alcohol and not to make yourself pretty for Johnny.”

“Don’t talk that way to me! You tell me where you got that from!”

He walked off towards his room in a bad mood, slamming the door hard.

“Get back here young man!” she shouted in vain.

It had been a long time since Lara had spent any proper time with her son. By now, he was so used to doing as he pleased, she couldn’t control him when she was around. It had been years since he needed a babysitter and Lara was somewhat relieved because that was an extra expense she no longer had. At the same time, seeing her son grow into a young man full of rage and hatred was not what she had wanted. She denied her neglect of him to herself, reminding herself she had to work and that her estranged husband had left her stranded so this was mostly his fault. Sometimes she felt guilty for not being able to give her son a life with a father and a mother living in a house with a good income, but those thoughts only made her depressed, making her want to drink. With no useful qualifications and a past of street work as her employment history, getting another job seemed almost impossible. John Goldberg seemed like her knight in shining armour. He was someone who cared about her, who had wealth, stability and could provide security, maybe even a father figure in her son’s life. She sat at the kitchen table and looked into her cup of cocoa, now wishing it was a shot glass of vodka. She restrained herself as she thought about cleaning herself up so that she could try and have what people considered a normal life with Johnny and her son.

Mischief threw his bag onto the floor in his room and punched the wall. He sat on his bed, breathing deeply as he tried to calm himself down. He wanted to hate his mom but he couldn’t. He had a lot of resentment towards her but he didn’t hate her. It made him furious to know that someone was hurting his mom. He hated his father for abandoning them. Knowing what his mother did for living made him ashamed and yet he knew she was doing it because she felt she had no choice. As far as he was concerned, his mom had choices but she just didn’t want to make take the steps to improving her lifestyle because she wanted an easy way out. His mom wanted fast money and her business could be lucrative. It didn’t matter now that he was back with the Jokerz. He could take care of his needs and he was set for a while with the success of that night. No one was there for him when he was in juvi and he didn’t need anyone now. He pulled his bag towards him to look over his share of the goods again. As his eyes wandered over the contents, he found Max’s purse, which he’d forgotten about. It seemed worthless considering the amount that had been stolen from the stores but he wondered if Max’s purse might hold some valuable information.

Maxine Gibson did appear illusive at school. Always top of the class or at least in the top three for best grades and so conscientious about her work. She didn’t seem to have a boyfriend. Mischief was uninterested in the cred cards and actually felt guilty for stealing from someone he knew, especially when he was no longer in a desperate financial situation. He found a photo of Max and Terry McGinnis. He studied it enviously. Terry had his arm around Max and was happily looking straight into the camera but Max was looking at him. It didn’t make sense for Max to be attracted to someone like Terry McGinnis. He was a washed up no-hoper who was struggling to pass the year. Granted, he could see Terry was popular with the girls at school because they thought he was cute but Max didn’t seem that superficial. Maybe what he saw was Terry being attracted to Max. He was always with her and who wouldn’t want to be? She was beautiful, smart and just kept a guy guessing. It definitely made no sense that Max would like Terry. They were probably just friends. Mischief could see nothing of particular interest until he found a little piece of paper folded and hidden in one of the purse compartments. He opened it to see it was a picture of Batman. No matter how smart Max was, Mischief couldn’t help thinking she was foolish for buying into this Batmania that had the girls in Gotham swooning over Batman.

He was starting to think he was no closer to knowing anything about Max when he remembered how protective Batman was over Max and how insane he’d got when Mischief was taunting him with threats of hurting her. It was any superhero’s job to save a person in danger but Batman seemed a little too emotionally involved for someone who was just trying to rescue any civilian. Mischief pondered over Max’s affection for Batman and started to speculate what their connection could be. He wanted Max to see that Batman was flawed like everyone else.

He wanted Batman to lay awake at nights wondering what Mischief would do next. Batman just got in the way of everything and tonight Ghoul and Hammer were in juvi because of him. His father had been obsessed with Batman and all Mischief wanted to do was but an end to the obsession and fascination. Ruining Batman’s reputation seemed to be his safest bet and he could do this without having to be seen in public. His eyes narrowed as he looked at the picture of Batman on the back of his door, which doubled as a dartboard when he needed to vent his frustration.

Mischief put everything back into the purse and put it into his bag. He settled down on his bed with a book which he had taken out from the bookshelf in his room. He needed to read for his school assignment but he mainly wanted to keep his mind active, knowing he wouldn’t be able to sleep yet anyway. He needed to keep his brain working so he could form a strategy for how he would disrupt Batman’s life.

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