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Batgirl (Volume 4) Issue 15

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"Collision Part Two: Engagement"
Batgirl Vol 4-15 Cover-1
General Information
Series: Batgirl
Issue Number: 15
First Published: December 12, 2012
Previous Issue: Batgirl #14
Next Issue: Batgirl #16


Synopsis

"Collision Part Two: Engagement"

Some time ago, the Joker met with his doctor at Arkham Asylum offering the tantalizing opportunity to write a paper around his journals. Unfortunately, the book was nearly indecipherable without his help, so he began to walk her through it.

Currently, the Joker has Barbara Eileen Gordon tied to a chair in the middle of the Cherry Hill Skaterink. He has beaten her, cut off her finger, and rigged her with a five-pound nail-bomb, all because she is the Commissioner's former wife. Despite his surprise at Batgirl's arrival, and his apparent obliviousness to the fact that his victim is her mother, he has big plans for her. He has proposed marriage to her with her mother's wedding ring - still encircling her severed finger. As she seethes with rage, he can't help but notice that she has failed to answer his proposal.

Joker described each page of his journal to Doctor Yi, until finally he came to a page which he claimed detailed what he might do if he ever met a nine year old girl named Sasha. This, naturally, was Doctor Yi's nine year old daughter's name.

As incentive to answer him, Joker places a gun to Mrs. Gordon's head, and without much debate, Batgirl agrees to marry him. Batgirl's mind is swimming with thoughts of what the Joker did to her, what the Joker did to the mother she had only just been reunited with, and the fact that it was her own brother James - an escaped serial killer - led her to the scene.

From nearby, James watches the door of the skaterink. He receives an unexpected call from Alysia Yeoh, his sister Barbara's roommate, whom he was manipulating. She believes that he is someone she can trust, and as such has called him for help after finding out that Barbara was attacked in their apartment. Reluctantly, James agrees to come for her.

Doctor Yi wanted to leave to make sure her daughter was safe, but Joker warned her to stay, or else something might happen to her. He explained how the journal had become a way for him to keep track of all the things he knew; his whole life. He had even written the exact qualifications he required for his life partner and soul-mate, and his plans for the wedding.

Rather than listen further to the Joker's speeches, Batgirl begins calling out to his thugs, warning them that while the kill-zone for a five-pound nail-bomb is at least forty metres, the Joker is less than three metres from it. Realizing that his more disloyal thugs will likely leave him to die, Joker is momentarily perplexed, allowing Batgirl the opportunity to leap onto his back.

Coldly, she informs him of the organs she's injuring with every punch; first a kidney, then his liver, and lastly his spine. Coughing blood, Joker falls to the floor, and Batgirl pins him there with her boot. She grabs his gun and puts it to his back, having dreamed for a long time of shooting him there, grazing his spine, not enough to kill - just enough to paralyze. It would be worth the guilt, the jail, and the disgrace if it saved lives.

Suddenly, a sniper's bullet warns her to stay back, and she realizes that his men are more loyal than she thought. Grinning, Joker passes her a list of things he requires for their wedding, and he promises that if she follows the instructions thereupon, he will free Ms. Gordon. Defeated, Batgirl promises her mother that she will return, then gathers some ice in a bag to preserve the severed finger. Before leaving, she warns the Joker that she is not like Batman - that she will not play by her mentor's rules when it comes to him.

While Batgirl is gone, the Joker receives an unsolicited phone call from James, who warns that he knows what the madman is planning, and that he will not allow it. Batgirl and Ms. Gordon are his to play with, not Joker's. Irritated, the Joker dismisses him and hangs up, prompting James to decide he has to help his sister, much to Alysia's confusion.

At Arkham, Joker explained to Doctor Yi that he thinks women are prone to infidelity, hoped to get some advice from her as to why he should get married at all, if a woman is likely to cheat. To combat that tendency, he thought it would be best to cut off his bride's arms and legs right after the wedding, to assure that she can't succumb to it.

Batgirl arrives at a disused church, where the priest apologizes to her for his part in what's to come. The Joker is holding his congregation hostage, and so he must be there to bear witness to the imminent beating that she will receive at the hands of the growing gathering of armed thugs in the church.

Appearances

"Collision Part Two: Engagement"

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