Bruce woke up sixteen hours later and started pacing back and forth in the living room. It occurred to him that his letter—the one where he talked about Crane—had already been delivered to Gordon. He paced for quite a long time, considering the possible consequences. Then suddenly, without a word, he went down to the cave, picked up his cowl, and left.
Now, Batman walks through a snowy white corridor in the second floor of the GCPD building. He unexpectedly runs into Selina sitting in a bench—her wounded arm has been bandaged. She smiles seeing him and stands up.
“How was the sleep?” she asks.
“Good,” Batman replies. “What are you still doing here?”
“Still? They didn’t detain me! I mean, they tried to arrest me for some old housebreaking incident but didn’t have probable cause,” she says and then whispers, “What can I say? I’m good at my job.”
“Is that a confession?” Batman emulates seriousness.
“Yes. Go ahead and arrest me.”
“But really, what are you doing here?” Batman asks.
“I just returned to give a statement.”
She gets closer to him. “Don’t worry,” she whispers. “I won’t tell them about Harley.”
Batman nods in gratitude. He notices two officers in the corridor, staring at them curiously. They must be wondering what the Bat and the Cat are chatting about.
“I’ll talk to you later,” he tells Selina and approaches the officers. They step back.
“What do you want?!” One officer blurts.
“I need to speak to Gordon. Do you know where he is?”
“I went to his office just a while back,” the other officer says. “He wasn’t there.”
Batman thanks them and strides past. “He must be on the roof then,” Bruce thinks as he reaches the foot of the stairs at the end of the corridor.
As he expected, Gordon is leaning over the railing, alone, smoking a cigarette and staring at the city lights. If you pay enough attention, you can catch the lights going out, one by one, as the Gothamites dim their lamps and slip into their beds. Soon, only the street lights will remain. Even they will be obscured by the invading fog and crickets.
“It’s you, isn’t it?” Gordon says without turning back.
“I’m sorry, Gordon,” Bruce finally speaks.
“You are a terrible friend, do you know that?”
“We have failed, Batman. This crusade has been in vain. We thought we could clean up this city. We thought we could help those lunatics … We were wrong and now my daughter is dead.”
“We got Joker, didn’t we?” Batman says.
Gordon turns around and throws away his cigarette in anger. “For goodness sake, is that what this is to you? Just a case? Oh we got the bad guy. Case solved. Everything is good now!”
Batman wavers. “That’s not what I meant, Gordon.”
“I know, I know!” Gordon growls and then takes a moment to collect himself. “It’s just how I’ve been coping. I’ve been blaming all this on you. It’s … I’m sorry. You’re my only real friend in this city. You can’t tell but I’m actually glad to see you.”
Batman wonders if Gordon received the letter. If he did, he shouldn’t have been acting this leniently. “Did you get the letter?” Batman directly asks.
Gordon squints and reaches into his coat pocket. He brings out an yellow envelope. “It was from you? Came from an anonymous source, so I didn’t open. These letters never carry any good news, you know? Tips and all that. Sure, they are invaluable. Without your tips throughout the years, we’d have been helpless but they also mean more work and I’m not currently—”
“Listen, Gordon,” Batman interjects, “this is a different letter. And…”
Gordon shoots him a confused look. “And what?”
“If you read it, you’ll learn some things about me that will make you hate me, drive you to end our friendship.”
“But you wrote the letter, right? I don’t understand. Why would you write something like that about yourself?”
“Because it’s true.”
Batman walks forward, leans over the railing and stares at the cityscape—almost all the lights have gone out now. Beside him, Gordon pockets the envelope and lights another cigarette. “I’ll mull it over then,” he says. “Also, listen, I haven’t had the time to arrange a funeral but I’m working on it. I want you to be there. You can come as you are. It won’t be a problem. Bring your boy too if you can.”
Silence. Batman has never hated himself more.