Aug. 6th, 2008

[Casefile]

Aug. 6th, 2008 06:47 pm
whydowefall: (bruce animated dual nature)
One in the afternoon found Bruce Wayne standing at the front of an aisle, softly illuminated by a ray of sunlight shining in through the stained glass cathedral window above him.

"It was a beautiful service, Alice," he said, gently touching the widow's shoulder. "Jameson was a good man, and served Wayne Enterprises well. I'm so sorry for your loss. If there's anything we can do for you—Wayne Enterprises as a whole, or me, personally, please don't hesitate to ask. It's yours."

Alice looked up at Bruce, offering a grateful but completely weary smile. "Thank you. We should be fine. Everyone's been just wonderful, Bruce. As much as anybody can say it about something like this, everything's gone off without a hitch. In fact, the only bit of aggravation's been— No, no. Never mind. In the grand scheme of things, it's just not important."

Bruce canted his head. "Alice, I meant it. Tell me what the problem is. I'll have it taken care of."

"How are you with insurance agents?" Alice asked with a mirthless laugh. "They won't write off Jameson's car. Like I said, it's a minor thing. But I want loose ends tied up."

"Of course I'll look into it. Have they said why they won't write you a check?"

"They will. They just won't total the car. They say it wasn't damaged enough, that it's fixable. As if we'd really want that car back, now…"

"But…" Bruce frowned dimly, even though now his mind was totally engaged, taking in and processing the turn this conversation had taken. "Sorry, but I thought he died in a car accident? How could a car that somebody died in not be damaged enough to be written off? You had to have a closed-casket service. That means things were pretty serious, right?"

Alice's brow knit. "That's just it. There wasn't a broken bone in his body. We didn't have to have the closed casket because of injuries, Bruce. It was because there was this strange discoloration to Jameson's mouth that the undertaker couldn't cover. It…"

The widow sighed, and blinked back a fresh round of tears. Bruce abandoned all further questioning at once, taking Alice by the elbow and offering a sympathetic smile.

"Forgive me. Tell you what. I promise I'll look into it for you, okay?"


One in the morning found the Batman standing at the front of a parking space in the GCPD impound lot, sharply illuminated by a slice of yellow light shining down from a streetlight behind him.

He was there to keep his promise to Alice Grant.

He could see where the insurance company would have balked at a payout, at writing the car off as totaled. Besides some damage to the right front side of the car, where it had clipped the building, the car appeared to be structurally sound. The airbag had deployed, and the windshield was spidered with cracks. But this… this little damage, the man should have survived—possibly with some internal injuries, but he should have lived, not been dead when the emergency crews arrived.

This didn't make any sense.

Batman scurried all over and around the car, documenting everything with a tiny digital camera he'd unclipped from the utility belt. Then it was off to the scene of the accident itself. A week later, there wasn't all that much left in the way of evidence. There was just the remaining damage to the corner of the building where Jameson's car had clipped it. The damage matched what Batman would have expected to find, based on the car.

What he didn't find were skid marks of any kind on the street or sidewalk, save a couple of dark scuffs where the car had mounted the curb.

This wasn't adding up. He made a mental note, as he tucked away his camera and headed back to where he'd parked, that he'd need the reports from the autopsy, and the crime scene investigation.

It might not have been what Jameson Grant's widow was expecting… but he was looking into the matter.
whydowefall: (alfred at shoulder)
Wayne Manor was still in the process of being rebuilt. Bruce couldn't risk being found out while that was going on, so while he was living in the penthouse atop Wayne Tower, he'd built a makeshift cave deep under a mostly-empty construction site not far away. The huge room was clean, and brightly-lit, a sharp contrast to the cavern under his estate. This room had a large workstation, outfitted with multiple computer and video screens, a state-of-the-art computer system, and a satellite feed.

But its owner was instead seated cross-legged on the floor, files and reports and photographs in neat piles, circling him. Bruce had shed Batman's armor, leaving a haphazard heap up on the workstation. The cape was carelessly tossed over a chair; the cowl perched in front of one of the screens. Bruce was in track pants and a black t-shirt, his hair a bit dishevelled, a pad of paper balanced on his knee. He was marking a passage in a report with a blue highlighter. A pen was in his other hand, and he was switching back and forth between the two of them, concentrating intently.

And he had a makeshift ice pack balanced on his left shoulder. It was a large Ziploc bag full of ice, wrapped in a bath towel. Every so often it shifted, and he had to reach up and reposition it.

This backup cave was reached by way of an elevated platform inside a dumpster at street level. Bruce heard it descending, but he didn't turn away from his work, instead shifting to reach for a photograph.

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