The Justice Academy

After the justice league discovers that villains have their own schools for creating villains, they decide to start their own school for heroes. This year, one Barbara Gordon is forced to enrol by her father and she really, really doesn’t want to be there.

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13. Chapter Thirteen

Barbara was quiet for the rest of the weapons session, despite the encouragement from the others around her.
“Focus Red.”
“You’ve got two years Red,”
“Hurry up Red! The cops’ll get us if you go this slow!!”

She shook her head and tried to listen to Aquaman, he was about to go out on patrol now that the three hour morning session was over. They were going to lunch, but all she could think about was those three voices in her head and that nickname. Red.
Cheshire, Aisha and Pam. Of course it could be a coincidence, her hair was red, that was where the nickname had come from in the first place. Just like Barbara called Kara Blondie, Aisha could have called her Red on a whim.
“Enjoy your lunch, and well done all of you. Bio-weapons are hard to use, you all did well with them.” He smiled and patted Kaldur’ahm on the arm as he passed before they all grabbed their lunches.
They spent the day in ‘Paradise’ when they trained, lunches were provided along with plenty of water to keep them hydrated.
“Barbara,” Kaldur’ahm called and she glanced at him, she found it hard to meet his eyes “are you alright?”
She blinked up at him, she had no idea how to respond to that.
She had expected a bollocking from Aquaman, she had injured not one but two fellow students. One of which was his own sponsored student, but instead of yelling and rage he had just told her it was alright and had someone come and look at her eyes.
The whole thing had been weird to say the least. He was meant to yell, meant to get angry at her, not be…nice.
“Uh…yeah?”
Kaldur’ahm scowled at her this time, Hal by his side looking equally perplexed.
“Barbara…did you think Aquaman was going to yell at you or something?” He asked almost laughing at how it must have sounded to him.
Barbara turned and grabbed her lunch, and sat by herself to eat it. She wondered how grumpy she seemed, or anti-social. She didn’t care. Kara and Roy didn’t approach her, instead, Aisha did.
“Hey. You look like you could use a companion.” She greeted and sat beside her, already finishing her lunch and devouring a bottle of water.
“I thought you’d block it.” Aisha admitted and Barbara shrugged her shoulders.
“I forgot it was made of fire.”
Aisha sniggered and handed her a bottle of water, which she took and drunk greedily. Aisha was silent until she was finished, which Barbara liked.
“Two years passes by quick Red,” Aisha almost breathed “make sure you know what side you’re on.”
Aisha stood when Wonderwoman came in and gave her a hug, which was returned earnestly. All Barbara could see now was the slight hesitation in all Aisha’s words, all her actions. The forced smile.
Aisha was working with Cheshire. Aisha had been given the same offer, but she was still here…did that make her friend or foe?
“Barbara? Are you really okay?” Kara asked, finally joining her.
Roy was sat with the lads, looking over frequently and Barbara nodded slowly.
“Yeah, just a bit shaky I guess…I didn’t mean to hit Kaldur’ahm.” She told Kara who smiled, it was a nice smile, not the big grin that she usually got from her.
“Well duh, you just…freaked out when you couldn’t see. Instinct.”
Barbara felt a strange relief, knowing that Kara didn’t spurn her for her actions. She really hadn’t meant to hurt Kaldur’ahm, he was nice, she liked to think of him as a friend despite their few interactions. She didn’t want to lose a friend she’d hardly made, not when she was trying so hard to be good.
“He doesn’t care you know, I think he’s just a bit confused about the way you reacted to Aquaman.” Kara told her, and then she looked at Barbara funny.
“Did you really think he was going to get mad or something? Aquaman doesn’t ever get mad. Like, ever.”
Barbara smirked at her friends speech and looked up when Wonderwoman stood in the centre of Paradise.
Wonderwoman did what most Leaguers did, when she entered a room she demanded attention.
“I know Aquaman took you though a physical session this morning, so my session will be more study based. It is always good to know of other cultures, as other cultures have other rules and other monsters. Monsters you need to know about.”
Barbara sat with Kara as Wonderwoman spoke, each of them enthralled by the veritable goddess before them. She was talking about the Greeks, the monsters that the league had faced and the magic that had raised them from mythology and the Underworld to fight the league.
“Circe is not so much evil as…” she paused to think of the word “mischievous, especially when she is bored. She once turned me into a pig.”
Had anyone else said that Barbara might have laughed, but she felt a certain level of disgust when she heard that it had happened to Wonderwoman. She also wondered what foul fate had befallen Circe, because there was no way that would go unpunished.
“Morgan Le Fay is evil.” She told them and Barbara frowned.
“Wait, Circe is Greek…Morgan Le Fay is from Arthurian legends. Does that mean the laws of their magic is different?”
Wonderwoman smiled and nodded.
“That’s exactly right Miss Gordon, just as Fate’s magic has it’s own set of rules to follow.”
Barbara enjoyed things like this, she enjoyed learning these things and who better to learn about magic than from an Amazonian princess? So she let the information roll into her brain, because Wonderwoman made everything seem normal and interesting and she almost forgot about the incident with Kaldur’ahm.
But two hours later they were done for the day and heading back to the dorm.
“You and Aisha are getting along well.” Roy commented and she nodded stiffly, damn did she not want to think about her right now.
Was she a good guy? Was she a bad guy? Friend or foe?
“I guess, I prefer you two.”
Kara and Roy were great friends, they’d just sort of taken her in. She wondered how they’d treat her if they knew the truth. She thought to Green Arrow, and that moment of suspicion when he thought she was involved with Cheshire. The dorm was quiet, it always was on a Friday because it was news night. Well, every night was news night but on Fridays they got Gotham news.
Gotham news was considered the worst of all of them because of Gotham’s crime rate, and because of the sheer insanity of the criminals there. Hence the reason students only got to see it once a week, other news channels covered bits and pieces of Gotham’s biggest stories but it was never covered in depth.
Barbara claimed the sofa with Kara and Roy and the three of them curled up together, Barbara and Roy had found it a bit weird at first but when you were friends with someone as friendly as Kara you got used to the contact. Barbara was still adjusting, but Roy had known Kara before and was already halfway there.
“With the recent bomb scare the people of Gotham are once more on high alert, Commissioner Gordon has enforced a curfew law on the Mayors order to try and keep civilians safe.”
The picture cut from the reporter to Jim Gordon and Barbara stared intently, trying to figure out whether or not he looked injured, if he’d been sleeping well, how many grey hairs he had compared to last week.
“The only successful bomb to go was unfortunately the one at Arkham, killing three patients four members of staff and allowing for eight prisoners to escape. Amongst these eight were Killer Croc, Baby Doll and Scarecrow. Police are on high alert and should you see them you are to dial 9-1-1 immediately.”
The picture cut back to the reporter and Barbara sagged. At least he wasn’t injured, although she knew he must have been rushed off of his feet with eight escaped Arkham prisoners. She though to the four members of staff, did she know them? Did her Pops know them?
The staff at Arkham were a hard bunch, but even they couldn’t keep it up forever and to know four of them had died during the bombing? It must have been really hard back home. She was going to call home tomorrow, even if that meant just leaving a message on the answer machine for Pops to hear. She missed him, she hoped he missed her.
“You alright there Barbs?” Roy asked her softly as the sports came up and the students cheered and groaned as their respective teams won or lost.
“Yeah. Pops looked tired, they’ve never had enough police for somewhere as busy as Gotham.” She told him and Kara almost wept when the TV reported that the Metropolis Magpies had lost to Star Players.
“Green Arrow will be pleased.” Barbara noted and Roy chuckled at her, it was always rather peaceful on Fridays.
“Hey look, the Gotham Rooks play the Central Spinners on Thursday.” Someone noted and Barbara cursed.
“And I’m going to miss it!”
Some of the students laughed at her outcry but mostly everyone just sucked it in.
“Twenty minutes till the movie guys, if you want popcorn go now or steal from your friends!”
There was a rush as Kara and Roy joined the others for popcorn and Barbara kept their seats warm and secure from being stolen by others vying for the best spot. Not that it lasted, by the end of the film there would be at least eight people piled on with them as they watched whatever film had been chosen.
That was her favourite thing about movie nights, everyone was friends on movie nights.

 

 

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