❯ In the Shadow of the Bat – Batwoman and Question: Catching up ( Chapter 5 )
Kate and Renee: Catching up
“About time you got here,” Kate Kain teased as the redhead opened the door to her penthouse suite. Set high above one of Gotham’s Towers it was a sigh to see, with plush carpeting, lovely furniture and a elegant, understated style.
“Sorry, I got held up in a meeting,” Renee Montoya answered as the slim, athletic woman took off her overcoat to reveal a stylish suit, then removing her fedora and letting her brown hair flow free.
“Thanks for coming,” Kate leaned forward to kiss Renee lingeringly.
“Hmm,” Renee savored the kiss, only letting her go reluctantly. “I should have come back sooner for that kind of greeting.”
“Remember that next time you vanish,” Kate said as she waved Renee towards the couch.
Renee walked over to the couch with a unconscious kind of athletic grace even as she noted, “I didn’t have much choice.”
“So,” Kate said as she poured them both drinks, “where did you go after you saved my life and stopped Intergang from torching Gotham?”
Renee Montoya smiled back as Kate cat hown, her skirt rising up to show off a flash of lovely leg, “Did the stupid thing and joined the hunt for Black Adam.”
Kate shuddered visibly, “Then I’m glad you didn’t find him.”
Renee sighed softly as she picked up her glass. “He was a good man, once,” she remarked, “until they took everything away from him.”
“Maybe so,” Kate admitted, feeling a bit shaken as she considered everything Renee had gone through in the last year or so. She had gone from being a police officer to being the partner of the question, met legends in the hero and villain community, and eventually adopted the guise of a hero herself.
“I’m glad you recovered, and I wish I could have stayed around,” Renee added, looking away uncomfortably.
Kate reached over to squeeze Renee’s hand, “Nothing to feel bad about, Renee. I swear, you have guilt down to a science.” A smile, “Besides, you even managed to help me preserve my secret identity despite my being stabbed. That takes skill.”
“Heh,” Renee actually blushed. With a shy smile she added, “Sorry about that stunt I pulled earlier.”
“What, fixing the Batsignal and shining it at my home?” Kate looked amused, “At least I knew you were back, even though it took you long enough to actually contact me.”
“I had my family to see too,” Renee admitted.
Kate looked surprised, “They know about….?”
“Not my being the Question,” Renee said, “but they do know I’m a lesbian.”
“They didn’t take it well,” Kate didn’t even phrase it as a question.
“No, not at all,” Renee agreed, “though the circumstances were pretty stunning.” With that she calmly sketched in how Two Face had framed her, outed her then tried to kidnap her to be his girlfriend.
Kate looked at her in stunned disbelief. “I’d heard bits and pieces,” she conceded, “but… he knew you were a lesbian, right? What was he thinking?!”
“Dent was crazy,” Renee sighed, “I stopped trying to figure it out months ago.”
“So, are you talking with your family now?” Kate broght them back to that point.
“Tentatively,” Renee put her drink down without having any. “MY brother and I are talking, but my parents are still….”
“It must be hard,” Kate said gently.
“Very,” Renee agreed. She continued briskly, “I know the beat cops in their area, they keep an eye on them, but that and my brother’s reports aren’t the same as actually being there.”
Kate nodded, thinking a bit guiltily of her own situation. While out to her family her wealthy parents asked her to stay in the closet publically, to help preserve the Kane reputation. It had been that secrecy that broke up her and Renee, all those years ago.
“Did you decide to return to the force?” Kate asked curiously.
“No,” Renee said, “after what happened with Corrigan, I can’t believe in it the way I did.” A grin, “Though Commisioner Gordon did ask me too.”
“Hard to turn him down,” Kate guessed.
“Oh yeah,” Renee agreed warmly, “he’s been like a father to me.”
Kate looked curious, “How did he take it, by the way?”
Renee surprised her with a laugh. “He gruffly hoped that I’d have better luck than he’s had with the fairer sex,” she revealed.
Kate shook her head, smiling. “So if you’re not rejoining the police,” she asked, “how are you managing?”
“Here,” Renee took a business card from her pocket and handed it over.
‘Montoya Investigations,’ Kate read, ‘Questions answered. Reasonable rates.’ She looked up and asked teasingly, “A bit obvious?”
“I hate to say it,” Renee noted, “but most people aren’t that smart.”
“And the villains?” Kate noted.
“I’ll handle that when and if it comes,” Renee shrugged slightly, sitting back in her comfortable chair.
Kate rattled the ice in her drink, noting that Renee hadn’t had any of her’s at all. “Are you….?” she nodded to the glass.
Renee looked embarassed. “I had a bit of a problem when I left the force,” she admitted, “I tend to go easy on the stuff, now.”
Renee shook her head, “I didn’t say no, did I?”
Kate made a impatient sound, setting her glass down with a thump. Meeting Renee’s eyes she finally asked the question she had wanted to all night, “So what do we do now?”
“I don’t know,” Renee sighed.
Over the past year Renee and Kate had been reunited, worked together in costume and out, and slowly healed the painful rift between them. After the Question and Renee saved Kate’s life she had took them into her home, nursing the deathly sick Vic Sage even as a romance slowly reignited between Kate and Renee. Shortly after a night together over Christmas Renee had left, determined to save Sage’s life, and they had only been reunited after Kate had been kidnaped by Intergang. Renee, in her first oputing as the Question, had saved Kate’s life, but then she had vanished once more.
“That’s not a very good answer,” Kate frowned.
Renee picked up her drink, this time tossing it back with a faint shudder. “Kate, we were in love once,” she said, “and I’m scared we’re just letting past feelings carry us away.”
“I don’t think so,” Kate shook her head, “in a lot of ways, what we have now is more real than anything we knew before.”
“Maybe so,” Renee acknowledged, “but I’m a notorious lesbian now, Kate. How is your family going to react to your being seen with me?”
“They’ll just have to manage,” Kate said dryly, “I refuse to live my life based on preserving the sanctity of the Kaine name.”
Renee smiled slightly, “You really have changed.”
“You too,” Kate nodded, “you aren’t saying I told you so, at least.”
Renee reached out to take Kate’s hand as she said, “All right, we’ll give it a shot.”
To be continued….
Note: I just finished the end of 52, and I was OVERJOYED to see that both Renee and Kate had made it to the end alive. To my annoyance they had a sequence involving them meeting that contradicted my first chapter to this fic, so I’ve tried to include that. 🙂