"War Games, Epilogue: Decompression": In the living room at Wayne Manor, Bruce Wayne drinks a glass of whisky while Dick Grayson, who is still recovering from the wound on his leg, takes some tea. Dick admires
- Do it. Pull the trigger. Give me a reason.
- -- Batman
Appearing in "War Games, Epilogue: Decompression"
- Batman (Flashback and main story)
- Alfred Pennyworth (Flashback and main story)
- Richard Grayson (Flashback and main story)
- Crystal Brown (Flashback only)
- Leslie Thompkins (Flashback only)
- Onyx (Flashback only)
- Robin (Flashback only)
- Blockbuster (corpse; flashback)
- Hill Gang (Flashback only)
- Stephanie Brown (Flashback only)
- Tarantula (Flashback only)
Synopsis for "War Games, Epilogue: Decompression"
In the living room at Wayne Manor, Bruce Wayne drinks a glass of whisky while Dick Grayson, who is still recovering from the wound on his leg, takes some tea. Dick admires Bruce's strength of purpose and he recalls the few times that he has watched Bruce drink alcohol and the sight of it fills Dick with fear. They are both accompanied by Alfred, who is drinking some wine. The three of them recall all the past events that ended up with the destruction of Oracle's Watchtower and Black Mask taking control of the entire criminal activity in Gotham.
Bruce reflects upon the efects that death has upon them and Dick realizes that Bruce already knows of his involvement in the death of Blockbuster, though Bruce's mind was thinking about Stephanie Brown. Alfred quickly changes the subject and asks Bruce about Leslie Thompkins and Bruce replies that she wasn't in good shape when he last saw her at the clinic and that he hasn't talked to her ever since. Dick is curious as to what did Bruce do after leaving the clinic and Bruce tells them that he went out to the streets and took down a weapon dealer and his illicit business.
Bruce recalls that after taking care of the thugs, he tried to reach for the intercom to call Oracle and tell her to summon the Police, but he stopped as soon as he remembered. Alfred asks if Bruce remembered the fact that Barbara is gone or that he is now a wanted criminal as well. Bruce tells them that until that moment he had not tell Robin about the death of Stephanie and Bruce explains that he tried to tell the truth to Robin, but after the battle with Black Mask and the great efforts they have all been through, Robin was still eager, young and strong and Batman couldn't reveal the truth to him and instead he told Tim to go to his family and share some moments with them. After a few hours, Batman tracked Robin and followed him to the East Side clinic, where Robin was trying to sneak inside to talk to Stephanie. However, it was already too late and Batman told Robin everything that happened and despite the hard news, Robin didn't lose control. Of course, days later, Tim's father, Jack was murdered and Tim was completely alone.
Dick blames himself for not being present during Tim's time of need, but Alfred replies that he was in no condition to be outside home. Alfred then explains how he managed to find Nightwing after he was shot in the leg and fell unconscious on a fire escape ladder. Alfred listened to Nightwing's call for help and a few hours later, Alfred located Nightwing and carried him to the mobile batcave to heal his wounds and take him home. Alfred then reflects on the fact that after the war ended, there were only Bruce, Dick and himself left in Gotham, which reminds him of the old times that he holds as a dear memory.
Bruce tells Alfred that the situation isn't exactly as the old times now that Black Mask has taken control over almost the entire gangs in Gotham. Bruce tells them that the Hill Gang didn't joined Sionis' side and they keep fighting the criminal's control under the leadership of Onyx, who defeated Alexandra Kosov during a gang battle between the Odessa Mob and the Hill Gang. Batman had a conversation with Onyx and she explained him that the gang won't join Black Mask after he murdered their former leader, Orpheus and that she is going to keep fighting despite what Batman thinks. Batman is worried that Onyx might fail and end up dead or leading the gang to death, but Onyx replied that because Stephanie died trying to impress Batman, it doesn't mean that she would fail as well. Onyx knows what she is doing and she told Batman that he is not responsible for Stephanie's death.
Dick agrees with Onyx, but Bruce tells him the conversation he had with Crystal Brown, the mother of Stephanie. Bruce was standing over the grave of Stephanie at the graveyard when Crystal appeared and asked what was Bruce Wayne doing there. Bruce told her that he was visiting the grave of a young hero, but Mrs. Brown could barely stand hearing the word. She expressed her feelings about the whole situation, her worries of rising a child with a criminal father and watch her grow to try and emulate the Batman and be like him. Mrs. Brown recalls that Stephanie always pushed really hard trying to "fight the good fight", but in the end all that she has left is a dead daughter and husband and a grandchild she will never meet. Mrs. Brown blames it all on Batman and she calls him a criminal because he breaks the law and drags little girls into his war to their demise. Crystal has a breakdown and admits that she failed her daughter, Stephanie. Bruce admits the same as well, but neither Alfred, nor Dick understand what he is actually referring about.
Finally, Alfred asks Bruce how is he going to keep working as a vigilante now that the GCPD have orders to shoot him on sight and Bruce tells him that it is going to be like in the very beginning and he must be very careful. Bruce stands up and tells them that he has some ideas and that while there are still millions of people in Gotham in need of protection, he will protect them with his life if necessary; which fills Dick with renewed hope.
- This book was first published on November 24, 2004.
- This issue is part of the War Games storyline and it serves as an epilogue for the crossover, piecing things together after the main event.
- Blockbuster's death takes place in Nightwing (Volume 2) #93.
- The death of Jack Drake takes place in Identity Crisis #5.
- Nightwing mentions that he can count on one hand the times he's seen Bruce drink alcohol.
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Links and References
|War Games Crossover|
The events from this issue or series are related to Batman: War Games, a massive Batman Title crossover involving a massive conflict between the different factions of Gotham Organized Crime, culminating in the rise to power of Black Mask.
This template will automatically categorize articles that include it into the War Games Crossover category.