Hello once again all! After great reception for my earlier fanfic the Crown of Utama from April and Jolie, here's my latest. I've always wanted to do a Batman/Lara Croft crossover fic, since I am great fans of both fandoms. The clash of personalities coupled with their similarities would make for interesting writing.
Basically, Lara travels to Gotham City after being invited by Bruce Wayne to a charity antiquities auction. However, the mysterious item up for bidding is wanted by a mysterious and threacherous foe from Batman's rogues gallery.
A Knight and a Lady – Batman/Tomb Raider crossover fan-fiction
Batman is the property of DC Comics. Lara Croft and Tomb Raider are the properties of Eidos Interactive. The following piece of fan-fiction is copyrighted to its author, Jedd JONG Yue.
Thin, wispy clouds floated by outside the windows of the Gulfstream G550, seemingly without a care in the world. The plane cruised casually through the troposphere, swiftly crossing the Atlantic. Lady Lara Croft leant back in her multi-position leather seat in the cabin of the executive jet. In her hand, she held a small envelope embossed with the logo of the Wayne Foundation in gold. It contained her personal invitation to the latest of many charity auctions organized by the Foundation. The items up for bidding would include various artifacts the intrepid adventuress had unearthed.
In her other hand, she held one of the more precious items up for bidding. The Eleazor Phial, as it was called in Arabic. The vessel was small but ornate, covered in beautiful carvings. She still didn’t quite know why it was called a “phial”, as Lara saw no feasible way to open it. Her thoughts drifted back to the events which had led to her finding the phial…
The dust settled around Lara as she surveyed the scene in front of her. A high-strength explosive had cleared away thousands of years of neglect, exposing what remained of an ancient middle-eastern town. Her companions gave her the thumbs up as she sauntered towards what attracted her attention the most: a covered well.
Lara heaved the wooden paneling aside, and dropped a bright red flare into the depths of the well. It hissed, casting light on the circular stone walls. At last, it hit the floor. “I’m going in,” Lara declared. The men who had agreed to help her on this expedition rigged her up. Lara attached the carabiner to her belt and descended into the well, holding another flare with her free arm. Lara studied the stone wall on the way down. It was covered with carvings, glyphs depicting what looked like a man rising from a smoking pit in the ground. Wells almost never featured this oddity. All of a sudden, the rope gave way and Lara tumbled to the ground. Thankfully, the sand softened her landing.
The flare still had some way to go. Lara felt the wall with her hands. Suddenly, one of the blocks pushed in. A creaking was barely audible, as Lara turned around and saw one of the bricks slide out of the wall. It was hollow, and in it was a mysterious capsule, small but covered with ornate carvings. She had just enough time for a quick look before she heard the distinct sounds of gunfire far above. The rope was no longer there. Lara’s closed in around a circular device on her belt, as a long tether shot up, its harpooned end wrapping around the support beam up above. She prayed it would hold as she ascended, pocketing the phial. She was met with quite an unpleasant sight.
The bodies of her companions lay around, as bullets kicked up the sand all around her. Lara leapt, dodging the deadly spray. She landed in the soft sand, getting to her feet. With a well-aimed shot from one of the two pistols she produced, she incapacitated one of her masked assailants. The harsh desert sun beat down on her, as beads of sweat formed at her brow. She turned round; delivering what she hoped was a lethal kick to the head of one of the goons. One of the goons noticed the phial peeking out from her pocket. “The Demon!” he exclaimed. Lara was momentarily puzzled. Before she could finish the thought, a man on a dirt bike rode by. “Lara! Come on!” he shouted. Lara bolted in the direction of the vehicle, and they rode away to safety.
Lara’s thoughts snapped back to the auction she was about to attend. She quite liked the idea of attending the auction, cavorting with the high society she was supposed to be a part of. After all, the events of the past month involving the evil shipping magnate Lynn Tan and the mystical Crown of Utama had left her needing a little relaxation.
She was headed for Gotham on the eastern coast of the United States, a city that was equal parts dangerous and glamourous, much like Lara herself. Gotham was also home to the mysterious vigilante known as Batman. Lara found herself mildly fascinated by the unorthodox method in which the Dark Knight doled out justice. If she was lucky, perhaps she would be able to glimpse this figure of the night for herself.
Far less interesting, by Lara’s estimation at least, was Bruce Wayne, the orphaned multi-billionaire who was also her host. The man seemed to fit the stereotype of a bored, rich playboy in every sense. It was gracious of him to invite her to the auction, of course. Wayne had even offered to let Lara stay at his mansion for the short period she was there. He was extremely handsome as well. Still, Lara had sifted through her fair share of suitors that fitted Wayne’s profile, and each one had been selfish and aloof.
Her attention turned to the two men who were accompanying her on this trip. They wore dark glasses, stoic and expressionless. Lara sighed and shook her head. Winston had insisted that bodyguards chaperone her on this particular journey, as “Gotham is no place for a woman to be alone in the dark”. Lara was slightly peeved, as she thought her loyal valet of all people would know she was the last person alive who would need a bodyguard. Lara had survived far meaner than the streets of Gotham. Besides, Lara was always one to treasure her own personal space.
As if reading her mind, the men seemed to stir. Lara ignored the movement. However, all of a sudden, the “bodyguards” began to stand up from their seats, brandishing guns. “Give us the phial”, one of them barked angrily. Lara held the object up in her hand, inspecting it for a moment. The men looked at her expectantly.
Lara simply said, “No”. Her eyes narrowed and she got up, delivering a kick to the head of one of her assailants. He was thrown back into the cabin wall. Lara reached for her guns, but realised they had been taken. No matter, she thought to herself. The silenced pistol the attacker was carrying coughed angrily, embedding bullets in the plush surroundings of the aircraft. The slight turbulence that plagued the plane was doing nothing to help her situation. Lara reached for her trusty pistols, however dropping the phial in the process.
“Bugger!” Lara said under her breath. The man instinctively dove down, grasping the phial. Lara aimed for his hand and shot twice. He grasped it in it, howling and the dropping the phial once more. It rolled under a nearby seat. Lara was surprised at how robust the phial actually was, since she had expected it to break at one point or another. Lara reached under the seat, groping around in the darkness to find the precious object. “Come on…” she said through gritted teeth. The attacker whom she had kicked earlier got to his feet, and stamped his foot down on Lara’s back. Lara cringed and used one hand to find the phial and the other, still holding the gun, to shoot her assailant. She twisted the pistol in her hand and fired. She knew she had hit her target when the man yelped in pain. At around the same time, Lara’s hands closed around the phial, which she slid into the safety of her pocket. Lara dragged both her assailants, one by one, to the door of the Gulfstream. Lara yanked the door open. The wind blew through her long, brown hair. The two attackers pleaded with her not to kill them. “No, that’s gravity’s job,” Lara smiled. With that, she shoved them out the door, as they yelled, tumbling through the wispy clouds to certain doom.
Having almost been killed was not a new experience, but this particular one had led her to regard the phial she held in her hands with a certain suspicion. Was it more than just a glorified paperweight? Lara had tried to extrapolate the markings but found nothing, except Eleazor. This might have been the name of the owner. Alister, her eccentric archaeologist friend, had suggested that it might have been a phial of some sort, perhaps containing a mystic potion. The only problem was, Lara had tried most methods short of breaking the phial open. Lara had now decided the object had caused her more grief than anything else and would be glad to get rid of it at the auction.
Much to her relief, the rest of Lara’s flight remained largely uneventful. Finally, the spires of Gotham’s skyline caught her eye. Small, red lights blinked irregularly, warning aircraft not to approach. Lara wondered if they were warning her, as well. Cars zipped through the motorways, in between the towering, art-décor skyscrapers which featured far too many arches and gargoyles, which seemed out of place for the time. Smoke curled into the air, adding to the light and noise pollution which Lara could sense even from the cabin of the Gulfstream G550. The runway was up ahead, faintly illuminated by small lights. The airport seemed to have a tense atmosphere, but since they were given clearance to land, Lara shrugged the thought off. The landing gear hit the tarmac, and just moments later Lara opened the door to her Gulfstream, ready to descend the stairs before her. However, what she saw made her realise her troubles had just begun.
A Knight and a Lady Chapter 2
Bruce Wayne stepped towards the old grandfather clock, tucked away in a corner of Wayne Manor’s ornate main hall. He pressed his hand against the glass, just as he had done so many times before, as a scanner behind it read his handprint. The clock slid open to reveal a small room. Bruce pushed a button on a small control panel, as a mechanical whirring was audible. A tiny elevator capsule arrived, as he stepped in, allowing it to take him into the bowels of the mansion. After a few short seconds, he arrived in what became affectionately known as the “Batcave” – the base of operations for his alter ego. The underground caverns had been used as part of the Underground Railroad, ushering slaves to safety. Bruce had converted it into a high-tech working space, outfitting it with a filtration system and emergency power generators. His loyal valet, Alfred Pennyworth, was already waiting for him.
“Trouble, sir,” he said primly.
“As always,” Wayne said, already adjusting his voice into the low scowl that he adopted as the Batman. Alfred motioned towards the large screen of the Batcomputer, powered by just a few slaved Cray computers short of the Pentagon itself. The display showed a map of Gotham City, and a flashing red light was over the Gotham International Airport. Wayne sat down, tapping the keyboard briskly. He was now tuned into the police band frequency.
“Hostage situation at Gotham International. All available units please report. Suspect has been described as Dr Jonathan Crane, alias The Scarecrow. Recently escaped from Arkham.” Bruce recognized the voice as that of Detective Renee Montoya, and that was all he needed to hear. He got up from his seat at the Batcomputer and disappeared into the costume section of the cave to suit up.
He snapped on the ribbed nomex and Kevlar bi-weave armour he wore each evening, clasping the gauntlets around his forearms and donning the heavy-duty gloves. He fixed the utility belt around his waist, its compartments already filled with the state-of-the-art equipment he often employed. Bruce whipped the cape around his neck, its weighted scalloped tips falling neatly into place. Lastly, he fitted the cowl over his head, his transformation for the night complete. He emerged not as Bruce Wayne, but as Batman. The Batmobile, sleek yet robust, sat waiting for him on the turntable that sat in the centre of the cave. Batman jumped into it, as the turntable rotated to face the exit. The jet thrusters roared, as the vehicle sped out into the night. “Godspeed sir,” Alfred sighed.
At the airport, Lara glanced down at the steps before her. Instead of the pomp and ceremony she expected to be greeted with, the airport was in utter chaos. “Ah! Rats! They’re all over me!” shrieked a maintenance man hopping about the tarmac. As far as Lara could see there were no rats in sight. Other airport staff was also displaying similar odd behaviour.
“Don’t let me fall!” A woman standing on the perfectly level tarmac yelled.
“Spiders…everywhere! Get them off me!” a janitor exclaimed, holding his hands out in front of him in sheer terror.
All over the airport, travelers and staff alike were running helter-skelter, fearful of what they perceived to be the tangible manifestations of their individual phobias. Lara had seen her fair share of bizarre occurrences, but this “welcome” to Gotham City was the strangest yet.
“What the devil is going on?” Lara muttered to herself. She cautiously took the first step down the staircase which had been wheeled in front of her executive jet. All of a sudden, a thick noxious fog carpeted the tarmac. Lara brought her hand to her mouth, gasping for air. The source of the fog was soon apparent. A lanky man dressed in what Lara made out to be a Scarecrow’s outfit stood in front of her, brandishing a scythe in one hand. The man’s clothing was patched together haphazardly, with straw sticking out of his sleeves. He wore a frightful burlap mask, with grotesque stitching for a mouth. The whole get-up was topped with a witch’s hat. He swung the scythe at Lara threateningly. Lara brought the guns to her hands.
“I don’t know who you are, but for your own safety I suggest you back off, hobo man.” Lara was answered with a low, disembodied laughter.
“Your plane,” the Scarecrow pointed a spindly arm at the Gulfstream. “I need it.” Lara’s eyes narrowed and she began to shoot. The bullets embedded themselves harmlessly in the scythe.
“Suit yourself,” he said with what Lara was certain was a wicked smile beneath the thatched mask. A spray was emitted from under the Scarecrow’s sleeve. The jet was more nauseating than the fog that surrounded him. Lara fell to her knees, coughing and gagging. The scene before her seemed to twist, like something out of an Escher painting. Lara concentrated, trying her best to overpower the mist that was creeping its way into her mind. All of a sudden, an all-too-familiar scene materialized in front of the Tomb Raider.
She saw her much younger self before her, entranced by the stone monoliths in a chamber in the Himalayan monastery where she and her mother had taken refuge after their plane crashed. The young Lara approached the pillars, as they split apart with an eerie glow before her. “Lara, have you found anything for the fire?” her mother’s voice, thin and disembodied, lingered in the air. Lara’s younger self approached the centre of the circle formed by the monoliths, touching the sword which was plunged into a stone dais. The sword suddenly turned, and sunk into the dais. Lara’s eyes widened. The green aura began to snake around the structure, as a large stone ring rose up from the ground, its centre a dazzling green light. “Lara, what are you…No, get back! Good Lord, what is it?!” Lady Amelia Croft exclaimed.
“There’s something in the light!” Lara answered, entranced. Her older self stared at the scene played out before her, unable to look away. Tears welled up in her eyes. “No…” Lara managed weakly. The toxin had taken its toll, and Lara’s most painful memory had manifested in what she perceived to be a tangible form. She was powerless to stop the image of her mother moving cautiously forward, towards the upright stone ring and the light swirling within.
“Stay here!” Lady Croft cautioned her young daughter. “What…who are you?” she asked the entity through the looking glass. “What? What about my daughter? You stay away from her! She meant no harm!” Her words echoed eerily, as tears welled in the older Lara’s eyes.
“What’s happening mother?” her younger self asked, frightened. “Who’s there?”
All of a sudden, Lady Amelia Croft’s expression contorted into one of sheer panic. “Oh, God no!” she yelled as she pulled the sword out from the dais with all her might. The bright green aura engulfed her, pulling her into the looking glass. Tears streamed down the older Lara’s cheeks.
“No!” she exclaimed as she wearily brought her weapons to eye level. She fired the guns twice, the bullets penetrating the ghostly scene and dissolving it. The traumatizing tableau slowly disappeared, and Lara could make out the gasp of the Scarecrow. It turned out that her bullets had caught him in the arm. Lara continued firing as the Scarecrow scowled, trying to dodge her shots. He swung his scythe, leaving Lara with a gash on her thigh. The fresh pain stung her as she fell to the ground, clutching her wound. Barely perceptible and seemingly out of nowhere, a dark shadow swept into the scene, swinging a bat-shaped throwing weapon at the Scarecrow, causing him to drop his scythe. The Batman!. The vigilante tackled the Scarecrow and pinned him to the ground, just in time for the arrival of several armoured police vehicles. He proceeded up the steps and held Lara in his arms, as he swung away on the cable attached to his grapnel gun.
“A knight in shining armour…” Lara muttered as she ran her hands over the ripped armour. Her rescuer displayed no emotion. They landed on the ledge of a nearby tower.
“Take these as soon as you can,” he said, handing her two small pills. “They will neutralize the residual effect of the toxin.” Lara received the tablets and stared quizzically at them. “The phial,” he continued, holding his gloved hand out expectantly.
“No,” Lara retorted. “Bruce Wayne wants to see it personally. It’s for the charity auction. Thanks, but by the way, I could have very well taken care of myself.” She brushed her hair aside and gazed at the airport, the police cleaning up the chaos. When she turned around, the Batman had disappeared. She popped the pills into her mouth with a swig of water from her hip flask. “Afraid of commitment, as usual,” Lara smiled to herself.