|First Published:||September 18, 2013|
|Previous Issue:||The Riddler #1|
|Next Issue:||Bane #1|
The Penguin has learned to deal with losses, since opening the Iceberg Casino. But now, the minor sum of $35,000 at the Black Jack table is causing him great displeasure - not because of the money, but because of who is winning it. They are a failed magic act called the Illusionists - well known for their sleight of hand scams. They have chosen the wrong casino to scam.
Unceremoniously, he has them escorted from the gaming floor, where he warns them that they must hand over their winnings and never return to his establishment. Without hesitation, one of the scammers simply says "No." He taunts Cobblepot for having lost his empire to Emperor Penguin. Penguin has Lark escort the men outside, and they further mock him for failing to even send goons to deal with them. Grinning, he responds that he will deal with them himself. Moments later, he has killed them all with skillful handling of his umbrella. Cheerfully, Penguin admits to Lark that it's been three years since he killed someone personally, and orders that if these men had any family, that family should be killed.
By morning, their bodies were dumped outside of the GCPD Headquarters, leading reporters to speculate on how much worse it might get in Batman's absence. Annoyed, Governor Carter Winston is caught on film promising to put a stop to this rise in crime - and he will begin his crusade with the Iceberg Casino.
The Penguin is unmoved by the threats, though. The Winston family and the Cobblepots have a history going back as far as the founding of Gotham. Oswald and Carter, though, have a personal history as well. When Oswald had been bullied at boarding school, it had been Carter who came to his defence. The governor's promise was an act - and Cobblepot expects him for dinner that very evening.
At dinner, however, Carter Winston reveals that his announcement was no act. He feels that Oswald has gone too far, and done too much damage to the city. At this point in his life, Carter can see no resemblance between The Penguin and Oswald Cobblepot as he knew him in school. So, he intends to shut the Penguin's empire down, replacing the casino and surrounding slums with themed restaurants and family entertainment. Oswald's response is calm, and he calls for champagne, graciously toasting to old friends a new ventures. However, it is only moments before Carter sips his drink and collapses from the drugs it contained.
Carter wakes in a darkened room to find the Penguin standing over him. Angrily, Carter realizes he was drugged, and demands his phone so he can call the police. Smirking, Oswald asks Lark to turn the lights on, revealing that they are in a hotel room, where the murdered corpse of Carter's assistant Miss Collins has been splayed out on the bed, and Carter is covered in her blood. What's even more incriminating is the fact that Carter really did murder her, thanks to the fact that the poison he consumed was Venom. That is in addition to text records of a sexual relationship between Carter and Miss Collins. All of this mounting evidence, though, can be forgotten, so long as Carter realizes that Gotham is the Penguin's city, and no one else's.
Days later, Carter Winston calls a news conference, and rather than give up on his plans for the city, he simply states that sometimes, the bullies get it right, pulling out a pistol, and shooting himself in the head on live television. Flicking off the TV, Oswald orders that a massive flower arrangement be sent to the funeral. Coldly, he muses to himself that Carter had made the same mistake that the Illusionists and the bullies of his youth had made: he underestimated the Penguin.
- The Penguin
- The Illusionists (Only appearance; dies)
- Otto Kruft
- Emperor Penguin (Mentioned only)
- Carter Winston (Only appearance; dies)
- Vicki Vale
- Miss Collins (Only appearance; dies)