a "The New Batman Adventures" fanfic
by Wyzeguy79



BEGIN at top of GOTHAM SKYLINE, then PAN DOWN to POLICE STATION. The building is partially covered in SNOW. BACKGROUND MUSIC contains a version of "JINGLE BELLS", to indicate that this is set on Christmas Eve. Sounds of CARS HONKING are also occasionally heard. We hear a VOICEOVER of BARBARA GORDON, as she will narrate this episode:

BARBARA (voiceover)
Ah, Christmas...give or take a few days...

The main OFFICE AREA is busy with POLICE handling various cases and SUSPECTS. Scattered throughout the large room are several COPS, HOOKERS, WHINOS, PUNKS, DETECTIVES, and anyone else that would fit in a scene like this. The room is also modestly adorned with Christmas decorations, such as Christmas lights and a "MERRY CHRISTMAS" greeting on the walls. The noise level is pretty high.

CLOSE IN on one corner of the room, where we see BARBARA sitting at her desk, typing away at her computer.
Sitting atop the monitor, apparently guarding it, are two PINKY AND THE BRAIN figurines (hey, she made a P & B reference in a previous episode, so this detail isn't terribly out of place).
She pauses now and again to look around the room and take in her surroundings with amusement.

BARBARA (voiceover)
Call me sentimental, or maybe just weird, but I enjoy being here at Christmas. This place takes on a unique charm that doesn't occur at any other time of year.

A COP leads a WHINO IN A SANTA SUIT past a young couple with a CHILD who's holding a ratty old teddy bear. SANTA suddenly grabs the teddy from the kid, who bawls. The mom looks at SANTA with amazement and unmatched fury and raises her large purse, ready to clobber the offender.

BABS winces as a WHUMP! sound is heard OFF-CAMERA.

BABS (voiceover)
Anything can happen around here.

The COP drags the fallen SANTA by the arm, as the kid and his parents walk off triumphantly with the teddy bear.

BABS smirks.

BABS (voiceover)
See what I mean?

BABS returns her attention to her monitor and continues typing.

BABS (voiceover)
I work here as the station's resident computer geek, updating police computer files and fixing computer problems when they arise. Some of the filing I could do at home, which I often do, but my workload doubles during the holidays, so I'm kept fairly busy.
Besides, I help put up the decorations, so I HAVE to show up.

DETECTIVE HARVEY BULLOCK passes by BABS' desk, waving hello and dropping off a candy cane.

BABS (voiceover)
That's Harvey Bullock. Friend of the family and the uncle I never had. We get along because I don't eat donuts, leaving more for him.

BULLOCK (smiling)
Hey, Squirt.

BABS (accepting the candy cane)
Happy Holidays, Harve! Still going to play Santa at the orphanage tomorrow?

BULLOCK (frowning)
Just like every year. Gets old after a while.

BABS (grinning)
Aw, c'mon, Harvey...admit it. You enjoy hanging out with the kids.

Yeah, right. Yer old man makes me do it every year just to annoy me. Wanna take my place this year?

Hmmm...tempting. But I don't have the body style for it, even WITH a pillow. Besides, I couldn't HOPE to match the jollyness you bring to the role.

Just for that I'm draggin' you along as my helper. See how YOU like it.

Does that mean I get to wear an elf costume?


I'm there!

Yeah, yeah, just don't start singin' Christmas carols....

BULLOCK walks off and BABS types some more on the computer.
Her demeanor saddens as she inputs some current information into the computer. CLOSE IN on the computer screen, and specifically the words, "CHILD ABDUCTIONS". A long list of names follows below it.

BABS (voiceover)
Of course, my job DOES have its downsides...

A commotion gets her attention, and she looks to her left to see a young GANG MEMBER of about 20 years of age grab a BAG LADY and hold a gun to her head. The air intensifies as every COP in the room draws his or her gun on him.

BULLOCK (shouting)

First let my brother outta the slammer! Y'aint got NO right to keep him there!

Oh, izzat a fact? Who's your brother?

Avery James. You picked him up earlier today.

BULLOCK (searching his memory)
"Avery James....Avery James..." The carjacker?

That's right...

BABS studies the GANG MEMBER from her vantage point at her desk.

BABS (voiceover)
I've got a clear shot from here. He's preoccupied with Harvey.

Her hand picks up a snowglobe paperweight.

Her eyes narrow with determination.

So yer sayin', what, that even though he stole a car and beat up an ol' lady in the process, we don't have any right to arrest 'im, 'cause he's your BROTHER?
DUMBEST thing I've heard all day!

I MEAN it, man! Bring him out here, NOW, or this ol' bag here gets blasted, I ain't PLAYIN' with you!

BABS raises the paperwight, careful not to attract attention.

A COP advances toward the GANG MEMBER, causing the latter to move defensively. In the process, the BAG LADY ends up blocking BAB'S view of the man, effectively ruining the shot.

COMMISIONER GORDON (off-camera voice)

The GANG MEMBER turns toward GORDON, who walks into view, gun raised.

I'm going to tell you one last time...

The GANG MEMBER'S finger tightens on the trigger.

GORDON (icily)
Don't even think about it...

A test of wills between the GANG MEMBER and GORDON. Neither blinks.

SLOW PAN across the room, as everyone watches with held breath. End the PAN on BABS, who's just as nervous as everyone else.

Finally, the GANG MEMBER'S gun shakes and the boy lets the woman go, dropping his gun in surrender. The rest of the room exhales, and the COPS apprehend him.

BABS (voiceover)
Commisioner James Gordon. Gotham's Finest. My Dad. Impressive, no?

GORDON holsters his gun, as BABS puts down the snowglobe, gets up, and walks toward him.

That...was...INTENSE! Makes me wish I had a video camera handy.

Hm? Oh, hi Babs. I was just doing my job. I'm surprised you're still here this late. Weren't you supposed to get off at seven?

BABS (looking up at the clock)
Late...? Oh, I didn't realize it was after eight. Must have been busier with the computer than I thought. Well in that case, I'm gone! Bye, Dad!
(kisses her father goodbye on the cheek)

GORDON (smiling)

BABS runs back to her desk, logs off of her computer, grabs her jacket and purse, and runs out the door, waving 'bye to the room. GORDON watches her go, amusement brightening his aged features.


The stately mansion, usually somewhat forboding at night, seems to have a friendlier air to it tonight, due in part to the Christmas light strung across the outside walls (not very lavishly, mind you; just enough to say it's there and to brighten up the place). CLOSE IN on a large window, through which a giant Christmas tree can be seen.

BABS (voiceover)
I'm going to spend Christmas Eve at Wayne Manor...

The living room is decked out in full Holiday Spirit. "JINGLE BELL ROCK" plays on a radio. TIM DRAKE (the current ROBIN) and ALFRED PENNYWORTH (the loyal butler) hang ornaments on the tree. They've been at it a while due to the tree's immense size, but they're having too much fun to mind, and they're about three-fourths done.

BABS (voiceover)
...surrounded by my closest friends.
There's Alfred, a great butler, and a kind soul if there ever was one. Great cook, too.
And Tim Drake. He's a good kid. Like a little brother who's fun to pick on.

BRUCE WAYNE (BATMAN) sits in his favorite chair and watches them. He's actually somewhat smiling, something he rarely does.

BABS (voiceover)
Bruce Wayne's nice, too. Maybe a little too serious for his own good, but he commands respect like nobody else.

TIM and ALFRED continue decorating.

We need more tinsel.

We've already used more tinsel than any THREE trees would need, and we're not even done decorating yet!

You want this tree to look awesome, right?

Yes, but the thought of having to vacuum all of this tinsel up when he take the tree down makes me want to consider a career in dentistry.

Tim could vacuum.

ALFRED (enjoying the thought)
Capital idea, sir! I'm sure he would ENJOY the experience!

TIM (not liking this idea AT ALL)
Wha--? No he won't! He's allergic to vacuuming!

Nice try. You have your assignment, Tim.

TIM (dropping his head into his hands in defeat)
Oh, man I'm doomed...

Meanwhile, DICK GRAYSON (once known as the first ROBIN, now known as NIGHTWING) paces back and forth by the phone, waiting nervously for a call and thus missing out on the fun.

BABS (voiceover)
Last but not least is Dick Grayson, whom I'm looking forward to spending the evening with most of all...for obvious reasons.

The phone rings and DICK quickly grabs it before it finishes its first ring.


BABS (voice on phone)
Hi Dick! Sorry I'm late.


BABS talks to DICK on her cel phone while driving.

BABS (apologetic)
I had a lot to do at work and lost track of time. I'm on my way.

DICK (voice on phone)
Got the stuff?

Check! Presents, food...that dress you like so much...

DICK (even more excited) Great! I'll see you then! Love you.

BABS (smiling broadly)
Ditto! Bye.
(hangs up phone)


DICK hangs up the phone truimphantly. His night just got a whole lot brighter.

Guys, that was Babs! She's on her way!

BRUCE (bemused, but not as excited as DICK)
Yes...so we gathered.

You and Babs have gotten a lot closer lately, haven't you?

DICK grins, thinking back to a week or so ago...


CLOSEUP of THE JOKER'S maniacal cackle, as he tosses a JOKER GRENADE behind him to cover his escape.

The GRENADE arcs toward BABS, who's wearing her BATGIRL costume. Suddenly, DICK, as NIGHTWING, leaps into the frame and dives with her to safety.

The grenade explodes OFF-CAMERA, illuminating NIGHTWING as he covers BATGIRL. They stay like this for a while longer, and realize that the rescue tactic has turned into an embrace. They look at each other and smile, not really wanting to get up.
They look up and see BATMAN standing over them.

Enjoying yourselves?


DICK shrugs.

Yeah, Tim, I guess Babs and I HAVE gotten closer lately, now that you mention it.

Why, he and Ms. Gordon used to be quite the couple in their college days.

Yeah, so I hear.
(to DICK)
Way t'go, man!


BABS taps her steering wheel with her fingers, her demeanor less than cheerful.

We see through her windsheild that she's in a traffic jam, with no relief in sight.

BABS blasts the horn a few times in frustration, then considers demolishing her steering wheel just out of annoyance. She leans back and rubs her temple.

This sucks...

For some reason she finds herself looking at an alley entrance on her left. She sees a young HOMELESS GIRL of about ten wrapped in a moldy blanket that does little to protect her from the cold. The GIRL pets a stray cat.

BABS' eyes widen as she sees an encroaching shadow on the wall behind the GIRL.

A human shadow.

The shadow reaches out predatorially, and an arm grabs the GIRL by the blanket. One quick snatch and the GIRL is pulled into the alley.

BABS watches all this in horror, the color drained from her face.




BABS unfastens her seatbelt, grabs her BATGIRL mask from the back seat, and gets out of her car, slamming the door behind her.

She races toward the alley, putting on her mask, completely oblivious to the fact that she just left her car unlocked and unattended in the middle of a traffic jam.

ALLEY -ext.
BABS enters the alley at a full run, looking around for any sign of the GIRL and her captor.

She sees three retreating figures heading toward a dark corner of the alley: the SHADOWY FIGURE (who's carrying the girl with the blanket) wears a black coat and black hat, while the other two are larger and wear gray threadbare jackets.

BABS grabs GOON #1's shoulder. He wheels around with his elbow. BABS ducks and delivers a solid punch to his ribs.

The other two turn around to see what's going on, and BABS kicks the GOON in the stomach, sending him into GOON #2. Both crash into a pile of cardboard boxes.

The SHADOWY FIGURE sets the GIRL down and pulls a long stick out of his coat. He charges BABS, swinging the stick. BABS sidesteps the stick but is backed up against a wall.

The GOONS get up and approach BABS from both sides. BABS grabs GOON #2's arm and throws him against the wall, raining five powerful punches onto his head and chest in rapid succession. GOON #2 falls while #1 tries to grab her from behind.

BABS ducks and sweeps his legs out from under him. She then performs a backflip onto a handstand over his body and brings her knees down hard on his chest.

She stands up just in time to see SHADOWY FIGURE swings his stick at her, hitting her in the arm and sending her back into the wall.

GOON #2 gathers #1 while SHADOWY FIGURE grabs the GIRL again and the three take off.

BABS tries to follow them, reaches a dead end, turns around, and finds several places the abductors could have exited the alley. She catches her breath, visible in the cold air.

BABS (voiceover)
This is not my day.

She rubs her arm where she was struck. A scowl crosses her face as she realizes something…familiar about the SHADOWY FIGURE…


Alfred answers the door, and is surprised to see BABS in complete physical and emotional disarray. DICK, BRUCE, and TIM also see her and they immediately rush to her.

ALFRED (taking her coat)
Miss...Miss Gordon? What on Earth happened?

BARBARA! Oh my god, are you all right?

Oh, I'm hunky-dory. It's the girl I'm worried about.

"Girl"? What are you talking about?

BABS sits in a chair and takes a deep breath.


The Manor's occupants are now in the BATCAVE, huddled around the BATCOMPUTER. All are dressed in their respective vigilante costumes, except of course for ALFRED, who doesn't have one to begin with. Sitting in the chair manning the computer is, of course, BABS in her BATGIRL outfit.

CLOSEUP of the COMPUTER SCREEN which shows a diagram of the alley where BABS chased the abductor.

BATGIRL (tracing her finger on the screen along the path she took during her pursuit)
...So then they took off, I chased them down this way, then I came to that part, a dead end, and when I doubled back, there was no sign of either of them. There were any number of ways they could have exited the alley.

So the question, then, is: "which path is the most likely, and the most suited to his goals?"
He obviously wanted to get the child to a secluded place as quickly as possible without being detected, so that rules out three of the exits as possibilities.

And he was running from you while carrying a ten-year-old kid, which I doubt he'd be able to do for any length of time, so he probably stopped running shortly after you lost the trail.

BATGIRL (nodding in agreement)
So it's possible his hideout was nearby. Maybe in a building...but I didn't hear any doors open..

ROBIN (pointing to the screen)
What about under the street? Looks like that storm drain is big enough for two people to fit down.

BATGIRL (remembering the details of the alley at the time of the chase)
That's right...the storm drain grille was open, now that I think about it. He could've slipped in there when I wasn't looking.
(sinking her head into her hands)
Why didn't I think of that sooner?

NIGHTWING (putting a soothing hand on her shoulder)
Calm down, Babs...you were under a lot of anxiety. It's easy to miss details like that in the middle of a chase. I know the storm drain exit wouldn't have occured to me either at the the time.

The trail's getting colder by the minute, so let's not waste anymore time. We have a lot of tunnels under GOTHAM to investigate.

BATGIRL (getting up and rushing to BATMAN)
No, I want to go solo on this one.


Please...just trust me on this one, Bruce. This is something I need to do alone.


Dont ask me to explain it right now, because I can't. Call it intuition or whatever you want, just trust me when I say that it's important that I do this on my own.

BATGIRL turns and walks to her motorcycle, putting on her helmet. NIGHTWING runs to her side, concerned.

What's going ON, Barbara? This isn't like you. There's something you know that you're not telling us. What is it?

BATGIRL (becoming angry)
What, YOU'RE perfectly allowed to go on your own private crusades, but I'M not?

Aren't YOU the one who told ME that there's "Safety In Numbers"?

BATGIRL (starting her cycle's engine and revving it twice)
And you didn't listen, as I recall. Now it's my turn.

BATGIRL snaps her helmet's visor into place, the image of NIGHTWING reflecting off of it.

BATGIRL revs the engine again and kicks the cycle into gear, taking off in a hurry.

NIGHTWING watches her exit the CAVE, and punches the wall next to him in anger.

What's going ON with her?

She knows who the mystery man is.


BATGIRL speeds along the highway, determined.

BATGIRL (voiceover)
I wanted to tell him. I shouldn't have yelled at him like that. He gave me that look he gets when he's concerned about me, and I almost told him everything.

A large sign reading, "GOTHAM CITY: 2 MILES" passes overhead.

BATGIRL (voiceover)
But would Dick understand? Maybe he would, maybe he wouldn't. He doesn't know what I've been through. He hasn't experienced what I did last time I went up against that monster!
And now he's kidnapping children! I have to stop him!
(shifts gears on her 'Cycle and tears down the road even faster)


TIGHT CLOSEUP of a puddle of water created from a slowly leaking pipe. BATGIRL'S foot steps in the puddle, making a tiny sploshing sound. Make sure that her reflection is visible in the puddle before her foot splashes.

BATGIRL continues walking, the eyeholes in her mask covered by green NIGHT-VISION lenses.

BABS (voiceover)
I HATE the sewers.
At least I brought my nose plugs. And a gas mask, since I'll more than likely need it.
But did I bring a coat? Noooo...That's too sensible. I mean, here I am in a wet sewer on Christmas Eve.

BATGIRL looks into every tunnel junction she comes to.

BABS (voiceover)
Okay...if I were a grungy child abductor hiding in a sewer...where would I live?
(hears an echo of children crying, and stops short)
Oh my god...

BATGIRL races down the tunnel the sound is coming from, ending up at a tunnel intersection. The children's distressed sobs are louder now.

BATGIRL (whispering to herself)
Stupid echoes...can't tell which tunnel it's coming from!
(hears the laughter of a madman resonate through the tunnels)
Just PICK one, Barbara!

BATGIRL heads into the tunnel in front of her, figuring it's the most likely one.

BATGIRL sees a faint blue light on the other side of the tunnel grow stronger as she gets closer to it.

She peers out of the tunnel and sees a fairly large room, criss-crossed with numerous grungy pipes. Arranged in rows on the floor are several tanks filled with toxin. Strapped to a far wall are eight CHILDREN, pure terror dominating their faces.

Standing in front of then with his back to BATGIRL is a man in a dingy black coat and hat. His shoulder-length black hair looks as soiled as the rest of the sewer. In one hand is a long stick, though it appears he uses it for effect rather than support for walking. All in all, even though we can't see his face, he's a pretty frightening figure.

BATGIRL takes in all this from her vantage point and scowls.

BABS (voiceover)
It's him. I KNEW it, ever since I caught a faint whiff of his signature scent back in the alley earlier.

FLOOR-LEVEL SHOT of the man, PANNING UPWARD to reveal...

BABS (voiceover)
Jonathan Crane. The Scarecrow.

SCARECROW points his cane at the GIRL in front of him, the one he'd kidnapped earlier.

Ah, little one...I'm glad you're finally awake. I apologize for so rudely spiriting you from the alley, but I have so much to do tonight.

The girl shivers, but due to the cold and to her captor's mere presence.

SCARECROW (cackling slighly, delighted)
My name's Jonathan. What's yours?

The girl doesn't answer.

SCARECROW (getting angry)
I asked you a question.


SCARECROW (putting a hand on her cheek)
"Claudia." Beautiful name.
Well, Claudia, it's like this: I am a psychologist. I study the human mind, and its emotions. Specifically...the emotion known as...Fear.

SCARECROW removes his hand from her cheek and walks over to a table covered with various lab equipment, like flasks and beakers.

I don't mind telling you, Claudia, I am absolutely fascinated by Fear. Some of my colleagues have even suggested that I'm obsessed by it...
(turning back to CLAUDIA, and smiling)
...but I wouldn't go THAT far.

BATGIRL watches as SCARECROW returns his attention to the table, and selects a vial of blue liquid and a flask of purple liquid.

I merely want to examine the essence of Fear. Why it exists, what its purpose is, why different people are frightened by different things, things of that nature.

CLOSEUP of SCARECROW as he pours the two liquid containers into a drinking glass. The colors swirl and blend together, and SCARECROW stirs the mixture with a spoon. The liquid turns a dark brown, almost black.
While all this sounds innocent enough, the effect of the scene should be absolutely creepy.

SCARECROW (picking up the glass and staring at it triumphantly)
To that end, I've developed chemicals with various effects on the human body. Some cause hallucinations triggered by the subject's worst fear...some are activated by the subject's adrenaline, paralyzing them with fear when they should be fighting or escaping...
...and, because every experiment must have a control factor, I've even developed a chemical that completely inhibits the subject's ability to experience fear.
This particular one is the hallucinogen I mentioned.

SCARECROW strides back toward CLAUDIA with the glass.

Up until recently I've been content to perform my experiments on adults. But it occured to me that children have less control over their emotions than grownups. They either feel something totally...or not at all. And since most of the fears adults posses stem from their childhood...
(standing inches from CLAUDIA'S face)
So what better test subject than a child? I've always wondered what drives a child to be terrified of a "Monster" under the bed.

SCARECROW lifts the glass to CLAUDIA'S lips.

So drink up, child, and let the experiment begin.

A BATARANG embeds itself in the wall next to CLAUDIA and the SCARECROW, startling them both. SCARECROW looks behind him--

--just in time to see BATGIRL swing on her grapple line (hooked to a ceiling pipe) and slam SCARECROW into the wall with both feet. BATGIRL'S wearing her gas mask, fully prepared.

SCARECROW drops the glass (which shatters on the floor), and staggers, dazed. BATGIRL grabs him by the collar and pins him to the wall, one forearm pressed against his throat. It's safe to say BATGIRL is unhappy with the guy.

Ah...Batgirl. It's been a while, hasn't it? BATGIRL

Still upset over last time, aren't you?

BATGIRL (leaning on SCARECROW'S neck)
Yeah. Thanks to your fear toxin I spent several hours living the worst nightmare of my life. It's a little difficult to forgive that kind of thing.

SCARECROW (making a choking noise)
*Ggggkh!* It was my pleasure...

And now you're kidnapping children and subjecting them to twisted fear experiments...on CHRISTMAS EVE of all nights? How bent ARE you?

BATGIRL is suddenly struck from behind by a wooden object. She lets go of SCARECROW and falls to her knees, dazed.

Standing behind BATGIRL are SCARECROW'S THUGS, who helped him in the alley.

I'm smart enough to have enlisted help. I created a special kind of formula, based on my fear chemicals...but highly addictive. I found these two junkies in a subway station. Now, they obey my every command, protect me at all costs, in exchange for another dose of the drug.
Who says it's hard to find good help these days?

The FLUNKIES pin BATGIRL'S arms behind her. She struggles fiercely.

P.O.V. SHOT of SCARECROW, who raises his cane and brings it down on the CAMERA (BATGIRL).

A sharp THUD is heard, accompanied by darkness.




NIGHTWING speeds through the streets on his motorcycle, followed closely by BATMAN and ROBIN in the BATMOBILE.
BATMAN keeps one eye on the road and the other on a scanner in the dashboard. The scanner's screen shows a map of the Gotham sewer system, with a green dot in the middle highlighting BATGIRL'S location. ROBIN watches the screen intently.

She still hasn't moved. This can't be good.

We're almost there.
(presses a button on the console and speaks into it)
Nightwing...are you getting this?

NIGHTWING looks at a similar scanner screen on his motorcycle.

Yep, my scanner's picking up the location, too. Six blocks away and underground a hundred feet.

NIGHTWING'S VOICE continues on the Batmobile's communicator.

NIGHTWING (voice on speaker)
Isn't that where The Sewer King used to live?

Yes. Child abductions would fit his M.O., but I doubt he's the one we're dealing with.

ROBIN (looking at BATMAN questioningly)
And..what makes you think that?

BATMAN (still looking ahead at the street)
You saw Barbara...she was genuinely unsettled. She obviously knew who the kidnappers were. To my knowledge she's never met The Sewer King. And her behavior suggested that she had some unfinished business to settle with the man.

NIGHTWING (voice on speaker, rhetorically)
Right...so who do we know that she'd have a score to settle with, that's capable of scaring her that much?

You mean...Scarecrow?

When he gassed her with fear toxin last year, she was exposed to a powerful hallucinogen that greatly affected both her health, and her psyche. She almost died. She never got a chance to pay Scarecrow back for it.

NIGHTWING (voice on speaker)
And Babs is like her father. She holds things back...buries her negative emotions. Those things can eat away at her over time. She might still be harboring some unreleased hatred for Scarecrow.

A purple car speed through an intersection in front of NIGHTWING and theBatmobile, causing other cars on the street to swerve violently.

A closer look reveals the car's inhabitants to be THE JOKER and his female sidekick HARLEY QUINN.

BATMAN reacts to this in his usual manner:

Oh, great...

NIGHTWING turns right at the intersection. Since THE JOKER went left, it's obvious NIGHTWING isn't interested in chasing the clown.

BATMAN (voice in NIGHTWING'S helmet radio)

To help Babs. You two can handle the Joker on your own.

NIGHTWING steers his cycle into the alley, while the Batmobile turns left after THE JOKER.

BATGIRL sleeps, handcuffed to an old chair, guarded by the GOONS. CLAUDIA'S OFF-CAMERA shouts wake her up.


BATGIRL stirs, her surroundings coming into focus:

CLAUDIA is still chained to the wall, obviously drugged and reacting to nightmarish visions in her head. SCARECROW is sitting in a chair facing her, while scribbling notes in a notebook in his lap. The rest of the children are also chained up, asleep.

BATGIRL struggles against her handcuffs, alerting the GOONS. They hold their guns on her threateningly.

SCARECROW turns to BATGIRL without getting up.

Ahhh...Ms. Bat. I see you're awake. The sedative wore off sooner than expected.
(to himself)
Mental Note: Make sedative more potent.

Let them go!

Wonderful...you're back on that subject again. Wouldn't you like to see how my experiment turns out?

BATGIRL simply stares back with unmatched contempt.

SCARECROW (shrugs)
I guess not.
(gets up and walks over to BATGIRL)
You know, after a while it gets annoying when someone fails to appreciate my work. I mean, I pour my heart and soul into it, and what do I get for my troubles? I get called a "Madaman!" A "Dangerous Psychotic!" For my efforts I get thrown into Arkham Asylum to rot...

SCARECROW leans as close as possible to BATGIRL'S face.

SCARECROW (venomously)
...by people like you....

BATGIRL (sarcastically)
Gee...I WONDER why?

BATGIRL suddenly raises her knees up into SCARECROW'S stomach, then plants her feet on his chest and pushes him off.

The GOONS react to this, raising their guns, while BATGIRL slips her hands out of the cuffs and stands up, facing the two in a defensive stance.

The GOONS fire their guns. BATGIRL ducks, unhooking two Batarangs from her belt, then jumps into a forward flip, throwing the Batarangs at the GOONS behind her. She lands facing the SCARECROW.

The GOONS are each hit in the face by a Batarang and drop their guns.

SCARECROW smiles savagely and raises his stick, bringing it down toward BATGIRL. She sidesteps the swing and crescent-kicks SCARECROW in the face, sending him reeling, then doubles him over with a kick to the stomach with the same leg., and finishes him off with an elbow to the back of the neck. SCARECROW sinks to his knees.

The GOONS charge BATGIRL, who picks up SCARECROW'S stick and holds it like a baseball player.

Batter up, boys...

Two black hands suddenly reach out from behind the GOONS and knock their heads together. The GOONS fall, revealing NIGHTWING standing over them, grinning.

Can't let you have ALL the fun.
(turning serious)
Why didn't you let us help you with this instead of running off on your own?

Before BATGIRL can reply, SCARECROW reaches up and sprays her with gas emitted from tiny jets under the "fingernails" of his glove.

BATGIRL, surprised, reels backward, drops the stick, and coughs. NIGHTWING springs forward and traps SCARECROW in a headlock. BATGIRL recovers, glaring back at SCARECROW.

What was that, Crane? Your fear toxins are usually more potent than this.

SCARECROW (grinning)
Correct, Miss Bat. However, that wasn't fear toxin I sprayed you with. Rather, it was the anti-fear toxin, that REMOVES fear.

I wasn't afraid of you to start with.

SCARECROW (sarcastically)
Right, tell me another. When you first showed up, you were horrified at my experiment, and to cover it up, you became as angry as possible. Remember I make it my life's work to study fear.
But now, I removed that fear, so all you have left...is your hatred toward me. Your need for revenge.

All right, strawbag! That's enough psychoanalysis for one day! You're coming with us! There's a nice padded cell back at Arkham waiting for you.

NO! I'm not done with him yet!

NIGHTWING (dumbfounded)

BATGIRL (striding toward SCARECROW)
You heard me, Nightwing. This....CREATURE....has to pay for what he's done to these children.


BATGIRL suddenly punches SCARECROW hard in the face, causing a startled NIGHTWING to let go of SCARECROW, who falls to the floor.

NIGHTWING (looking up at BATGIRL)

BATGIRL picks up SCARECROW'S stick and raises it, about to bring it down on SCARECROW'S head.
Has to be done, Nightwing!
(swings it downward like an axe)

NIGHTWING catches the stick and stares BATGIRL in the eyes.

NIGHTWING (venomously)

BATGIRL pulls back and swings the stick at NIGHTWING this time, who ducks quickly. Even more enraged, BATGIRL arcs the stick downward. NIGHTWING blocks the stick and sweeps BATGIRL'S legs out from under her.

BATGIRL hits the ground and NIGHTWING holds her down.

That's enough, little Miss. Just for that you're getting coal in your stocking.
It IS still Christmas Eve, right?

GET OFF ME! If you don't let me go, Scarecrow will--

They both look back to where SCARECROW should be. He's gone.

...Get away....

BATGIRL shoves NIGHTWING off of her and stands up, livid.

Thanks, Dick. Thanks a LOT.

BATGIRL takes off into an access tunnel. NIGHTWING prepares to follow, but hears the frightened cries of the homeless CHILDREN still chained to the wall. He looks at the CHILDREN, at BATGIRL'S retreating form, then back at the CHILDREN, and sets about freeing them.

LOW SHOT of BATGIRL'S feet as they race down the tunnel at top speed.

BATGIRL reaches an intersection and looks around, trying to determine which direction to go. She hears SCARECROW'S voice echoing through the sewer:

SCARECROW (off-camera echo)
Come, Miss Bat...surely you're not AFRAID of the dark!

BATGIRL (shouting)
I'll FIND you, Scarecrow! COUNT ON IT!!!

SCARECROW (off-camera voice)
Then look behind you...

BATGIRL whirls around in time to see SCARECROW swinging a reaper's scyth toward her, and ducks under it. The scyth strikes the cement tunnel wall. BATGIRL manouvers behind SCARECROW and throws a punch at the back of SCARECROW'S head. SCARECROW sidesteps the puch and thrusts the pole end of the scyth into BATGIRL'S stomach, doubling her over.

SCARECROW pins BATGIRL against a tunnel wall, holding the pole part of the scyth against her neck.

Now what are you going to do, Miss Bat? KIll me? You had your chance, and you didn't...have...the guts.

BATGIRL struggles fiercely, then stops, suddenly calm.

You know, Crane...I've decided you're not worth killing.

SCARECROW (taken aback)

You heard me. You're not worth it. In fact, you're pretty laughable.


Yeah. Here it is, Christams Eve...and THIS is how you spend it? Performing psychological experiments on homeless kids, and wrestling around with me in a SEWER? I mean, come on, talk about not having a life!

SCARECROW (threatening tone)

Yeah, I'm supposed to shut up and be scared by a nerd in a Halloween mask that looks like it was ripped off of one too many horror flicks. Give me a break!

SHUT UP!!!!!!!

You took away my FEAR, remember? What did you THINK would happen? You just wanted me to break my rule against killing. You wanted to see if I could do it. You wanted to see if your will was stronger than mine.
(shoves SCARECROW against the opposite wall)
WELL IT ISN'T! I'm stronger than you because I DON'T bow down to my fear! I DON'T let it consume my life! I deal with it every day, yes, but it DOES...NOT...CONTROL ME. Can you say the same?

SCARECROW simply stares at her.

BATGIRL (smirking with contempt)
Hunh. You can't, can you? That's why you study the concept of fear so much. Because you ARE controlled by it. Deep down, you're still a scared little wuss, terrified of one little thing....

CLOSEUP of BATGIRL'S lips as she pronouces a single word:


SCARECROW slides into a complete rage, screaming at the top of his lungs and swinging the scythe. BATGIRL once again evades the swing, stepping into the tunnel intersection. SCARECROW continues his attack, scraping the blade of his scythe against the cement walls in an effort to put an end to BATGIRL.

She leads them into a large room where SCARECROW keeps storage tanks of the many varieties of Fear Toxin, which line the walls. The room deadends at the far end.

Looks like i was right. You CAN'T stand people laughing at you. You CAN'T stand the thought that no one will take you seriously. The only power you ever aquired over ANYONE was their fear.
So you took refuge in it. Studied it. Tried to figure out what it was about it that's so powerful.
Just so you'll never be laughed at again.

SCARECROW (catching his breath)
Interesting theory, but it doesn't matter. It's the end of the line for you.

BATGIRL (mock-disappointment)
Awww.....but I'm not done TAUNTING you yet!

SCARECROW roars, swinging his scythe low at BATGIRL'S legs. BATGIRL jumps over it, and cartwheels over SCARECROW'S head, ripping off his mask.

SCARECROW'S scythe blade buries itself in one of the tanks, releasing a crimson cloud of Fear Toxin into his face.

SCARECROW staggers backward, coughing furiously. The cloud fills the room as SCARECROW - or, more accurately, JONATHAN CRANE - drops to his knees. He covers his face as hallucinogenic visions begin to overwhelm him.

BATGIRL (on her way out of the room, carrying SCARECROW'S mask)
NOW I'm done. Merry Christmas!!!
(runs out into the tunnels)

NIGHTWING unchains the last CHILD, who hugs him, shivering. NIGHTWING smiles, then looks up as her hears BATGIRL enter.

Batgirl...is Scarecrow...?

BATGIRL (solemnly)
Alive. But in no condition to hurt anyone. Now come on, this place will fill up with Fear Toxin any moment!

NIGHTWING and BATGIRL lead the CHILDREN out of the lair, as the red toxic cloud makes its way into the lair. CLOSE IN on the tunnel the cloud entered from.

The room is filled with a red fog. JONATHAN CRANE sits at the center of it, hallucinating. His hands cover his ears, as ghost images float over his head.

Images of people...laughing. All at him. Among the group of laughing faces are BATMAN, ROBIN, BATGIRL, NIGHTWING, COMMISIONER GORDON, JOHNNY CARSON, DAVID LETTERMAN, BOB HOPE (and just about any other famous comedian), TWO-FACE, POISON IVY, PENGUIN, KILLER CROC, FARMER BROWN (and if FARMER BROWN laughs at you, you know you have problems!), LOCK-UP, HARLEY QUINN, and of course, the original Laughin' Boy himself...THE JOKER, whose head appears the largers, and who unquestionably laughs the loudest.


SCARECROW (tormented whisper)
no...make it stop.....oh god, please, m-make it stop.....


The manhole cover lifts up and slides to the side. NIGHTWING, BATGIRL, and the CHILDREN crawl up out of the sewer. NIGHTWING closes the lid behind them. BATGIRL collapses to her knees, exhausted, taking deep breaths.

BATGIRL (between breaths)
Fresh air...AT LAST!

NIGHTWING (speaking into his communicator)
N.W. to Batman: Batgirl and the kids are alive and safe, and Scarecrow's been dealt with. Over.


BATMAN and ROBIN crouch behind the Batmobile, as machine gun fire peppers its bulletproof exterior.

The JOKER, the one firing the gun, looks distressed as the gun clicks, out of bullets.

BATMAN rises up into view, glaring at the JOKER menacingly.

JOKER chuckles, an 'I-am-just-so-screwed' look on his face, and throws the gun at BATMAN and runs.

NIGHTWING listens, then looks at BATGIRL and shrugs.

Guess he must be busy.


The snow falls, joining the inch of snow already on the ground. FOLLOW two trails of footprints across the yard. BABS and DICK walk together through the snow toward the mansion.

BABS (voiceover)
The children were given to Child Protective Services, Scarecrow was taken back to Arkham, were he's expected to awaken from his catatonic state sooner or later...
Batman finally caught Joker and Harley Quinn...


ROBIN sits near STEPHANIE BROWN, a.k.a. THE SPOILER, as they both unwrap their presents.

BABS (voiceover)
Robin got to spend Christmas with The Spoiler. I tell you, those two make a great pair.

SPOILER (examining her present unenthusiastically)
Great...another jigsaw puzzle....

ROBIN (checking out his own present with a similar reaction)
Hmmm...a slinky...what I always wanted...


BABS and DICK reach the back door to the mansion.

BABS (voiceover)
And then there's us...

BABS (taking DICK'S hand)
Listen...Dick...I'm...I'm sorry for all the stuff I said to you tonight. All the stuff I did. I'm sorry I hurt you.

Babs, I know you better than anyone else. I know the kind of stuff you've been through. I'm just glad you got through it on your own, without killing anyone. I'm proud of you for that.
Just...next time you're in trouble and I want to help...let me. I don't want anything to happen to you, Babs...I love you.

BABS (smiling at him, then looking up)
Dick? What time is it?

DICK (looking at his watch)
Just about midnight.

BABS (smiling)
Oh good. Merry Christmas, Dick. Love you too.

The two embrace, then kiss for a good minute. PAN UP to the top of the doorway, where a mistletoe hangs.




KEVIN CONROY: Batman/Bruce Wayne

TARA CHARENDOFF: Barbara "Babs" Gordon/Batgirl

LOREN LESTER: Dick Grayson/Nightwing


EFREM ZIMBALIST JR.: Alfred Pennyworth

BOB HASTINGS: Commisioner Gordon

JEFFERY COMBS: Scarecrow/Jonathan Crane




ICE T: Gang Member

MELISSA JOAN HART: Stephanie Brown/The Spoiler