ethnocentric slurs • misogyny, sexism • sexual harassment • attempted sexual assault • attempted drugging.
♪ ♫ Twinkle, twinkle, little bat,the mad hatter, Alice’s Adventures in wonderland
How I wonder what you’re at.
Up above the world you fly,
Like a teatray in the sky ♪ ♫
Some Call It Work, But It’s More Like Art
“Mr. Mayor, crime is way down, and I know some of our uhh…” Gotham Police Commissioner Peter Grogan struggled for the appropriate colloquialism “…mutual friends may be alarmed, but I assure you, we’ve got our best team on it.”
The Commissioner loosened his tie, and looked longingly at the meatloaf sandwich sitting, just unwrapped, in parchment paper on his desk.
He picked up a box of paperclips and hurled it at his office window while Mayor Karlo continued reading him the riot act over the phone. When Commissioner Grogan was on the phone, this was his tool to get the attention of any officer green enough to flinch.
Today, it was a young woman, fresh out of the academy – not that Grogan was in the habit of letting women walk a beat, “desk officers,” is what he called them, and they were relegated to filling out paperwork and doing administrative work and occasionally going to schools to talk with children about the Gotham Police Athletic League.
Commissioner Grogan covered the receiver, and began to bark orders; his phlegmy voice hurling flecks of spittle from the man’s mouth (some even clearing the desk).
“Kelly was it? Get me a glass of milk and Jim Gordon, in that order!”
“Yes sir,” the blonde officer replied, rolling her eyes as she turned to head for the kitchenette.
Grogan leered at the woman leaving the room and gave a low whistle after the door was closed.
“You trying to hail a cab, commissioner?” Came the shouting voice of Mayor Karlo on the phone. “Because you can be in the first yellow taxi outta Gotham City if you don’t fix this!”
“Mr. Mayor, I assure you, this isn’t going to be a problem,” the sandwich continued mocking him from the desk. “I’m even now about to have a discussion with my best guy.”
“Best guy?! You told me you had a best team on this! You’re supposed to be the best guy, Pete. I want a goddamn taskforce, do you understand me? If crime is down then this can be priority one.”
“Sorry sir, I meant the guy leading the team. He’s coming in here even as we speak to give me an update on this whole stinkin’ thing.”
“Taskforce, Peter. We’re going to need to address the press on this pretty soon, and I want you to have your terminology straight; if they ask, say it’s the same men who rid our streets of that gang of orientals! People remember them, it’ll build confidence.”
“Mr. Mayor we didn’t have a team for the Yīnyǐng ––“
“The Chinamen, sir. That’s what their gang was called. They just kinda,” Grogan paused as he saw Kelly rounding the corner with a glass of milk in hand and Gordon behind her. “Stopped. They just stopped their operation.”
“The press doesn’t know that you crumb! When they ask, this is the same taskforce!”
“Yes sir. They’re here now, Mr. Mayor. I’ll prepare a report for you following the update,” Grogan heard the receiver slam down on the other end of the line and placed the handset back on its cradle as Gordon pushed the door open slowly without a knock.
“Jim, finally! Wait in the hall for a spell, I need to talk with Kelly about an assignment,” the commissioner barked.
“Yessir, Commissioner,” the lieutenant replied with a puzzled look on his face, but after a beat: “Kyle, though.”
“Kyle. Yes! Send her in.”
Officer Kyle entered the office, lightly closing the door behind her, hoping to keep it open just a crack so Gordon could hear the ensuing conversation; she’d been in situations like this before, and something about the commissioner’s eyes made her go all Halloween cat. She often thought that being a police officer made her feel safer, it conferred a certain level of respect and authority. Later she would reflect: who polices the police?
Kyle had arrived at Gotham City Police Department the same day that Lieutenant Gordon had, and, she didn’t really trust him per se, but she’d observed varying levels of corruption in the department, from root to tip, and Gordon was the only cop in the building who hadn’t been here long enough to be poisoned by it all.
“Sir, you wanted to see me?”
“Listen, Kyle, I’m thinking of putting that can of yours to work. Maybe in vice. We uh…we’re investigating a…um…a ring of underground brothels, and I think you might be the girl for the job, whaddaya say?”
“Woman,” she replied, hesitantly, “and would that mean I’m getting promoted to detective?”
“You’ve barely been here a month, Kyle. And we don’t really make girls –“
“Women,” she spoke more assertively, but still with deference.
“Pardon me, Kyle. We don’t really make women into detectives. But this would be a special assignment.”
“Sir, with respect, there are no other officers, man or woman, who are undercover at GCPD. According to your briefing to the academy, undercover work is reserved for detectives, and usually veteran detectives,” she was nervous, but she didn’t show it. Growing up in half-cocked foster homes taught her to mute her emotions and be willing to fight.
“Sure, doll,” the words oozed out of Grogan’s greasy mouth like Sunday gravy, “we can make you a dick. We can make a big deal out of it, too. ‘Gotham’s First Dame Detective!’ sounds like a helluva headline to me…but it won’t be official until after the case is beat. We don’t want the bad guys recognizing that million-dollar mug, now do we?” the commissioner smiled like a jackal, but nonetheless, Kyle’s eyes lit up.
“Absolutely sir,” she was measured and calm. “Thank you so much for this opportunity.”
“And Kyle,” the commissioner started scribbling something down on a piece of scrap paper, then stood up, somewhat laboriously (probably owing to a bum knee), extending the paper to the young officer. “Meet me here tonight at seven. Bring a couple dresses with you. We need to see what you’ll look like in this operation. Make sure it’s believable.”
She took the paper, gritting her teeth together in disgust.
“Sir, I don’t have anything particularly presentable, I assumed the department would pay for–“
Commissioner Grogan pulled out a twenty dollar note, nodding at the rookie officer to take it.
“You should be able to get two or three nice dresses with this,” Grogan smiled hungrily. “Go ahead and get that taken care of. Seven o’clock, Kyle. I’ll be waiting. Go on.”
Officer Kyle took the money, trying her best not to glare, and made a show of “unlatching” the door when she pulled it open to leave.
Jim Gordon barely made eye contact with Kyle, having heard most of the exchange and feeling a mix of irritation and embarrassment. She was young enough to be his daughter, after all, and it wasn’t difficult to find a woman who was willing to take a copper to bed, especially, Jim suspected, for a man who so many were sure would be the next mayor of Gotham.
Lieutenant James Gordon slinked into the office, closing and latching the door fully behind him.
“Jim,” Grogan sounded agitated – without the attractive blonde in the room it was too easy to remember why he had asked for Gordon in the first place, “I’m sure you’ve heard about this bat that the hoods are talking about,”
“Yes, well…” Jim was rarely at a loss for words, and a gifted liar, but it took him longer to react to the question than even he expected, “…I’d sort of assumed it was a local legend. There were those Chinese a couple years back, and –“
“This isn’t like the Chinese, they were ghosts, never anything that anyone reliable had seen,” the commissioner snapped, “this is something new, and the mayor is breathing down my neck about fixing it, Jimbo.”
Jim Gordon hated being called “Jimbo,” but let it slide.
“I can start asking around, but where do you want me to start?” Gordon asked at a loss, “from the looks of it, violent crime is improving right on time for Karlo’s re-election campaign, why does he care about this Dracula fella?”
“Jimmy, here’s the thing,” Commissioner Grogan began, “a lot of the guys say you’re um…they say you’re a good cop. Flass said some of the boys at the docs took care of him for some overtime work and that you only took a third of what he offered you. I gotta say, as much as the devil has this department, I appreciate a man of…integrity.
“But, look, I don’t know what’s got the mayor’s bowtie in a twist, I just want him to leave us alone, and, honestly,” the commissioner smiled an uneasily broad grin, “I trust you, Jimbo. That’s why I want you to lead a taskforce to find this animal and bring him in. Just tell me who you want on your team and tell me your plan. Consider this the top of your list of things to do today.”
“Kyle,” Gordon replied almost too quickly. He couldn’t help but think of the moment they’d had in the hall just before he’d been given this cockamamy assignment; maybe he could relieve her of the dogshit straw she’d drawn with the commissioner.
“Kyle’s greener than a mick’s wallet, and twice as stupid, you don’t want a broad on this. I really thought you’d take Thigpen or Flass.”
“We’ve been chatting, and she’s got a good head on her shoulders, and she takes direction well,” Jim retorted instantly. “Like you said, the corruption here is pretty prolific, and the other fellas aren’t trying to give a deskie a piece of their take. I can trust Selina in a way that I can’t trust Flass.”
Grogan’s face turned the color of the meatball sandwich on his desk. He was flush with agitation, but he couldn’t pretend at being above corruption if he insisted on needing a blonde rookie for some bullshit vice gig.
“Yeah, Jimmy, take her,” he sighed. “But it’s on your ass if she screws this up.” The Commissioner furrowed his brow and grasped his sandwich with his hands but waited before picking it up, instead raising his eyes to meet Gordon’s. “What are you still doing here? I need an outlook yesterday and a report of some kind first thing in the morning; plan on pulling an all-nighter, Jimbo.”
“Yes sir,” Jim shot back, and left the commissioner’s office, closing the door behind him.
Selina looked up from her desk to see lieutenant Gordon, hovering (impatiently, if you asked Selina) while she put a few items into her handbag. He lightly touched her arm.
“Selina, let’s take a walk before you call it a day,” Jim muttered in a voice that was quiet but articulate enough for her to decipher.
As they reached the front doors of the Central District Headquarters, Jim Gordon explained how he’d relieved Selina of her obligation to the commissioner, apologizing that she had to deal with men like him.
Selina eyed the older man. He was well-intentioned, sure, but she didn’t need another foster father – there was a certain way that men looked at her when they were being “helpful,” and she knew all too well the expectations of helpful older men – Gordon didn’t exactly do the creep-move of leaning in too close or affectionate accidental touching of some of the men she’d been abused by, but trusting people wasn’t how Selina Kyle survived the manifold trauma of growing up as a wayward girl in the slums of Gotham City.
“I didn’t ask for you to save me, lieutenant,” Selina’s words were baited with venom; almost begging her superior officer to challenge the point.
“Look, Kyle, Selina,” Gordon was adapting his conversational pattern to hers; he was good at deescalating, even if he was more of a natural talent at fighting. “I’m sure you’ve dealt with your fair share of slimy men, and I didn’t mean to imply that you can’t handle yourself – I’m sure you could’ve – but the commissioner is in bed with some of the worst people in this town, and he was being pretty blatant that he wanted to get into bed with you as well.”
“I know how to deal with a blowhard like him, and you thinking that I don’t have a plan to protect myself just tells me you don’t respect me anymore than the cops who have a bad habit of being really crummy at whispering.”
“Selina, I,“ Jim paused, looking for the right phrasing, “I could hear what he was saying in there, and I saw an opening to get you out of it. I’m sorry, I just couldn’t help but think of my daughter. She’s about your age, and –“
“Thank you, lieutenant,” she interrupted, mentally noting that the bookworm she’d seen Gordon leave with the other day was his daughter, and not some trollop he was cavorting with.
The pair stopped on a corner, and Selina noticed that they’d walked almost three blocks since leaving the station.
“I appreciate what you’re trying to do, sir…” Selina tried to choose words that showed some gratefulness without giving her lieutenant the wrong idea, “…and I’m thankful for the chance to work with you on this bat-thing, but I wanna stay on Grogan’s good side, so I’m gonna spend this money on a pair of dresses and I’m gonna meet him at the address he gave me tonight at seven.”
Jim’s face was screwed up in a look of utter confusion.
“And if you can get away from that desk of yours,” she tugged Gordon’s navy blue tie, pulling his head closer to hers, “you can meet me for a drink at The Canary Cage at eight o’clock, sharp.”
Detective (but, publicly, “officer”) Selina Kyle pecked Gordon on the cheek and skipped into traffic, carelessly dodging cars with all the luck and grace of an alleycat.
“See ya tonight, Jimmy!” She winked and smiled, waving dramatically while walking backwards to the adjacent corner, narrowly avoiding some people on a motorcycle with a sidecar. She disappeared into the rotating door of Fritz’s Department Store.
The confusion on Gordon’s face endured.
Of course Selina Kyle had a plan. You don’t join a police force that is only known for bribery, corruption, and extortion planning to reform the department.
Selina knew what Grogan expected from her, and she was planning to use that expectation, and the twin facts that Grogan was married and in the book to wrap him around her finger.
She thought of herself as a good judge of character, but the truth was, Selina Kyle was mostly cynical.
If you assume people have the worst intentions, you don’t get disappointed was a North Star for how she interacted with people. Let them prove her wrong, and maybe she can see about some optimism further down the road.
With her first foster family, she learned to protect what was hers, and to always get her fair share. Because “what’s yours” and “what you’re given” are almost always two different inventories.
Her second foster home was, actually, not too bad. Which is to say, she liked it there. But almost a year after Selina’d arrived, her foster mother was told she was disqualified from the program. Something about the neighborhood, but it was the last time she really remembered having her heart broken.
Her third foster family was where she learned to fight. The parents weren’t interested in helping a street kid get on a better path, and instead tried to push her into…well, it didn’t matter anymore. She saw an opportunity to push her foster father into oncoming traffic, and she sneaked out with mother’s jewelry while the woman tended to her husband in the hospital.
She spent some years sleeping in questionable places – alleys, unlocked cars, she even managed to spend two whole months on a boat in the marina, she spent more than one night in an opium den – and she learned what pursuits people get to chase when they have enough money to bribe police officers. Lucky for her, slinking around that place taught her how to hide, how to pickpocket, and how to capitalize on opportunities (like well-to-do men passing out in the throes of poppy and keeping their billfolds in the same jacket pocket every time).
It was how she’d handled Flass – Selina thought it was incredibly stupid that so many of these so-called “detectives” allowed their home addresses to be listed in the Gotham White Pages; she figured it was more evidence that the cops had nothing to fear from the criminals (because they were one and the same).
The address that the commissioner had invited her to was a fancy apartment building not far from headquarters, in the up-and-coming Adams-West neighborhood, overlooking the sprawling Adams Park. Foolishly, the building was just a quick skip from the already upper-crust Adams-East-Parkside neighborhood, and the luxurious gothic row homes that signified the kind of wealth that let you show off while still staying in the city proper.
Just one block back from the park was where Mrs. Grogan lived in an expansive, mansion-brownstone with her husband and their housekeeping staff.
Four people working for a Gotham power couple seemed excessive to Selina, but the Grogans didn’t seem like the kind of people who noticed their excess.
For example: Mrs. Grogan typically had an excessive amount of wine before dinner on a Wednesday like today, and the housekeeping staff worked for a service, which meant it wasn’t atypical for someone new to be working on any given day.
All of these factors and Mrs. Grogan’s absolute rejection of any kind of inconvenience meant open doors and free access to Commissioner Grogan’s listed place of residence, if you could manage to look the part.
This made it all too easy for Selina to “model some fine jewelry” and surreptitiously leave a special package for Mrs. Grogan before she slipped out of the servant’s kitchen and into the shadows behind the giant row house.
“It’s unlocked!” came the reply from beyond the door to the apartment, and Selina Kyle took a deep breath and put her hand on the doorknob, twisting it while reflecting on this apparently powerful man’s complete-but-consistent lack of operational security.
She pushed the door open to see Commissioner Grogan slithering out from behind the bar on the far side of the luxury flat. The great greasy man looked freshly showered; he wore a smoking jacket and held two glasses of brown liquid in his hands.
“Cuban rum,” Grogan shared, holding up one glass and motioning toward Selina. “The Bacardi Company, best in the world.”
Selina strode to the commissioner in a low-cut black cocktail dress with a high-cut slit, accepting the glass with a smile and a quiet “Thanks.”
“Cheers, then,” said Grogan, clinking his glass against Selina’s. She took a teensy taste, but Selina had been in enough of these situations to know a Mickey Finn by the pungent smell. On her tongue, she immediately noticed a bitter taste which would’ve been more common two years ago, but never in the best rum in the world.
Unfortunately for Grogan, he’d already been in the bottle, likely working up the guts to make whatever plays he’d had planned out for Selina.
He’d probably never seen the utility in building up at least a mild tolerance to chloral hydrate.
“Well look at you,” Grogan smiled like a starving wolf, then turned his back to Selina, “You’re dressed to kill, ain’t ya?”
“Just to maim,” Selina played along. “This is a real nice place ya got here, commissioner.”
Selina craftily swapped the two rocks glasses with one another, handing hers to Grogan.
“Please,” Grogan’s eyes narrowed and his smile broadened practically to his ears, “we don’t need to be so formal here. You’re out of uniform, kitten.”
“What would you prefer I call you…sir?” A perfect facsimile of a come-hither smile played across her lips.
“You can call me ‘Daddy,’” said Grogan, taking a deep swig of his drink and only making the slightest reaction to the taste.
The rookie downed the contents of her swapped glass, causing Grogan’s eyes to widen in delighted anticipation. Selina figured that he’d done this before, no one was this sleazy their first time, so he had to know it would take twenty minutes to start working, even if he’d almost certainly put too much in her drink. Grogan finished his cup, and handed it to Selina.
“Why don’t you go mix us up a couple more of these? I’d love to see how that dress looks from behind,” the man wasn’t smooth, but wealth and proximity to legitimate and illicit power provide the kind of confidence that Cuban spirits could only aspire to.
Grogan sat down in an industrial-styled armchair, all leather and heavy metal, it must’ve weighed a hundred pounds.
“Sure thing, daddy,” Selina was sick to her stomach, some of it a literal roil no doubt from the drugged sips she took, but mostly because of Grogan’s malignancy. He wasn’t an altogether bad-looking fellow, but the way his words and intentions oozed out of him made his skin glisten.
Selina pulled the bottle of rum from below the bar, and slid open the closed cabinet door, looking for more of the drug to spike it with. She found a tin labeled “snuff” and assumed it to be an incognito hiding spot for the offending substance. A lick of her fingertip and a pat into the tin proved her right, and while Grogan looked away for just a moment she pinched a bit between her thumb and forefinger and dashed it into his drink, stirring it in with her finger under the guise of playing at seduction. A splash or two of angostura, a sugar cube, and a squeeze of lime would do more to mask the sedative than Grogan’s idiotic hope-she’s-a-bimb strategy.
“I always wanted to be a bartender; I think you’ll like this,” she said as she sultrily slunk to deliver the drink (but she drifted just out of his reach after she handed him the glass).
He took a tentative sip, smiled, and gulped the rest down, beckoning Selina to sit on his lap.
“Seems like you’re multitalented, kitten,” Grogan patted his lap and lowered his eyes, to insist that she take the seat.
A gifted performer, Selina only recoiled on the inside, and took a gulp of her cocktail (which was mostly water).
She moved toward the man, tracing her finger around his shoulders, flirting believably while touching him as little as possible.
“You know, daddy,” she held his gaze like a stage mesmerist as she said the words which dripped like warm honey from her bright red lips, “it’s a real shame you’re married.” Her spiked heels hit the wood floor in a punctuating “click!“
Grogan adjusted himself in his seat, casting any pretenses of chivalry completely off. To a man like that, power meant “over everything that you outranked.”
It was an imbecilic philosophy for anyone who wasn’t at the top of the hierarchy.
“I wonder if I could make an honest man out of you.”
“I think you’ll find dishonesty to be quite a bit more fun, kitten,” Grogan oozed, reached out for Selina’s hand, which slipped, like water, out of his clammy grip.
He narrowed his eyes, then started smacking his lips together like his mouth was dry. Grogan sighed, and Selina was in front of him, smiling.
“Relax, sir,” she said, the sudden formality seemed to jar his thoughts into place for a moment as she took his hand, pulling it over the arm of the heavy chair.
Grogan’s eyes fluttered just a little, and he shook his head, as if trying to clear the cobwebs out, while Selina massaged his other palm with her soft, delicate thumb.
“Daddy,” he sputtered. “Call me daddy, pussycat.”
A click. Then a ratcheting sound.
“Ooh, yes. Let’s play a game, daddy,” her tone was sharp, her grin was cheshire.
And her commissioner was just realizing his wrist was cuffed, under and through his seat, to his ankle.
“This is a little tight, isn’t it? I’ve got some scarves in the closet, if you’ll undo these, I’ll grab ‘em,” Grogan sounded calm. Selina could see on his face that he was fighting the alcohol and the sedative just to show the slightest hesitance.
“It seems you’re in a bit of a jam jar, dormouse,” Selina purred with menacing resolve, “and I’m late for another tea party, so here’s how it’s going to go –“ she produced a folding Ensign E20 pocket camera from inside her handbag.
“I paid a visit to your house, over Parkside, just before coming here. It looked like the help was preparing a beautiful meal for you and your the missus. I wanted to have a chat with her, ya know, girl-to-girl, but she didn’t seem to notice me when I crept upstairs to hide a little something,” Grogan was fighting to take this in; the rum no longer dulling him, but the chloral hydrate not being something he could resist.
“What are you talking about?” He managed to say, sounding to Selina like a root canal patient at a very generous dentist’s office.
“Well, Mr. Dormouse,” Selina snapped a picture, the bright flash marked with the sound of its high-pitched charge. “I left some playful things in a spot where your wife will absolutely look within the next month,” she paused and snapped another picture, “and I don’t think she wears as much red as I do.”
She smirked and took another picture.
“You’re going to promote me to detective, immediately, and you’re going to partner me with Jim Gordon,” Selina’s smile faded from her face, replaced with a hard, flat line, and a grave tone which contrasted sharply with her bright red lipstick. She was feeling a bit of a buzz, though she couldn’t pin down whether the major contributors were the rum, the Mickey, or the adrenaline. “You’ll pay me an additional four bits an hour, which comes out to twenty bucks a week.”
“Twebby…a week?“ Grogan was beginning to slur his words, “the department can’t afford tha-thabt. For a desky?”
“The department is only giving me the raise that goes with the promotion,” the smile returned to Selina’s face as she brought her lips very close to the commissioner. “You will pay me the extra twenty…unless you think your wife would want to be paid a visit. With these pictures? And maybe I can tell her where to find the gift I left at your house?”
“Ah-ah,” Selina corrected him before he could say the disgusting word. “Let’s not make this disrespectful. I wouldn’t want you to miss your dinner since you didn’t get your dessert, Peter.”
She dangled the key to the handcuffs from her index finger; of course any good cop or robber would have a handcuff key on their keyring, but the commissioner’s keys were, alas, on the bar with his wallet. Grogan began to turn red with anger and embarrassment, even as his eyes grew heavy, and Selina folded up the camera and excused herself into the washroom to touch up her makeup.
When she reemerged moments later, she opened the commissioner’s wallet, removing almost three hundred dollars in cash which she stuffed with the camera into her handbag.
“Let’s call that a start,” she remarked, twirling the handcuff key around her finger. She filled a glass pitcher with ice from the bucket and water from the bar, and made her way back to Grogan’s side, who was, at this point, too out of it to lunge at her for the key. “I’m going to leave this right here,” she made a show of crouching down to place the key on the floor, well out of reach of Grogan’s restrained hand and foot. He would have to drag the giant chair across the floor to get to it, and by then Selina would have disappeared into the night.
“Listen to me you hussy,” Grogan spat, as much a result of his intoxication as his anger, “this ain’t over! Do you have any idea who you just tried to extort? You’re in for a rude awakening tomorrow, kitten. You’re fucking dead!”
“I think you’ll reconsider,” Selina said flatly, lowering her eyes to be level with Grogan’s, “but why don’t we talk about it in your office tomorrow morning,” she flung the ice cold water into the commissioner’s face and dropped the pitcher onto the floor, where it shattered into a thousand pieces. “After you’ve had a chance to cool off.”
“Watch your step, sir,” she opened the door to the apartment, flicking off the light switch and casting a burlesque silhouette against the lighted hallway. “Well, would you look at the time! It’s going to be a late night, so don’t wait up. Ta-ta!”
The door slammed shut and she was gone. A drunk, drugged, dumbfounded commissioner screamed a curse word into the dark.
Cuts to his hands and budget.
Bruises to his knees and ego.
It would be an hour before he was free and dry enough to make the trip across the park.
It would be two before he realized she’d lifted his watch.
Selina Kyle (who had the beginning of a run in the knee of her left stocking) hustled toward the Caged Canary. Her heart was beating in her throat, and she could taste the faint, metallic tinge of adrenaline that had carried her several blocks that she only barely remembered.
That was reckless, even for you, she thought, but still found her cheeks hurting from the smile that hadn’t left her face since she left Grogan’s apartment. Selina had some trouble with impulse control. It made her really good at facing danger head on and really bad at evaluating the potential consequences.
No plan is fool proof, Selina reflected. And he’s connected, Selina. What if he just has you killed?
The thought sent a momentary chill down her spine, but she couldn’t do anything about it now.
She waited in the dark cloakroom behind another patron, then found herself standing in front of a lost-in-thought host who wore a white frilled tuxedo shirt and black cummerbund.
“I’m sorry to have kept you waiting, lieutenant,” Jim was sitting alone. He stared into a glass of dregs and the remnants of melted ice.
When he looked up at her, he made a visible effort to not fall out of his seat and clumsily stood to pull out a stool.
“How was y-your,“ Jim had stammered as a school boy; these days it happened very rarely, but he found himself flustered in a way that was unbecoming of a qualified detective. He regained something like composure, “–You. Um, well goddamn, Selina, I didn’t know I’d be so underdressed. I haven’t been here too long. Wife is visiting family in Cleveland, so it was wait for you or start working on that report for tomorrow morning. Short meeting with Grogan, huh, I hope that means good news?”
“Lots of good news, partner,” Selina purred, “why don’t you let me buy you a drink, to celebrate?”
Jim Gordon wasn’t the kind of fellow who said no to a dame in a low-cut black cocktail dress with a high-cut slit.