Agatha took a deep breath and clutched harder on her square suitcase; her heart was beating fast as she entered the Gotham City Police Department. The place was filled with people walking around everywhere, policemen and detectives. She looked around the place, looking for someone who would help her. She shrank her shoulders at the sound of a strange voice towards her.
“Can I help you, sweetheart?”
The girl looked at the bearded man who stared back at her. The words almost didn’t come out of her mouth when she tried to speak.
“I- I’m looking for… James Gordon?” She said in a small voice.
“Jim? He doesn’t work here anymore.”
Agatha’s face fell and turned bright red; slightly gasping and swallowing hard after. The shame was too much for her and now she just wanted to run away from there.
“Oh.” She let it escape. “I’m sorry, I- I thought-”
“That’s okay.” The man interrupted her. “Do you know him?”
The hesitation in her voice made the detective not trust her. It was just a slight stutter, Agatha was really shy and her voice would betray her every time she was nervous. However, the long-haired detective didn't know that and decided to keep her in the delegacy, just in case she was one more of those crazy people controlled by Jarvis.
"You know what, um..." He said. "Why don't you just sit down here and I'll give him a call, okay?"
The girl was confused by the sudden rudeness of the detective but obeyed him, sitting on the bench he pointed to. She watched as he walked away, flipping his phone open and dialing a number. Sighing, she looked away, shaking her head and closing her eyes.
She shouldn't have returned. She should have listened to her mother. Gotham was no place for young girls. It was too dangerous for her. Her thoughts were interrupted when another man sat on the bench beside her.
"Will this take much longer?" He said as he sat down letting a long sigh out. "I have stuff to do, you know."
"We know, Victor," The previous detective that was talking to Agatha said to him. "We know exactly what kind of stuff you're talking about."
Victor Zsasz sighed and shook his head. He didn't know what kind of energy or force moved him to agree to give a statement about what happened on the previous night. It was just him coping with a plan by the Mayor's chief of staff to expose Butch. Not a big ideal.
It didn’t matter anymore because he had just noticed the girl beside him. With a half smile, he turned his body towards her and stared down at her. She was wearing a simple white blouse with a navy blue vintage skirt; her short legs were crossed and her small foot was bouncing up and down like she was nervous. The hitman watched as she tucked a strand of her recently cut hair behind her ear; her nails were painted with a pale pink and it only made her look even more innocent. She looked young, very young.
Agatha swallowed hard as she saw the man staring at her, getting more and more nervous than she already was. She didn’t take a better look at the man, but she could tell he was one of them. The ones on Jim’s letters. The ones that tried to kill him, the ones who terrify the streets of Gotham, the thieves and the murderers and scammers. The former detective had already told everything about them.
But she didn't know Victor. For some reason, James Gordon hadn't even mentioned his name to her. Still, she sensed some bad energy coming from him. Maybe it was the way he crossed his legs and turned his entire body towards her and stared her down as if she was the prey and him, the hunter. Maybe.
The girl sighed and looked at her wristwatch. It had only been five minutes since Bullock had left her there. Every second seemed like an eternity. From the corner of her eye, she could see the way he watched her, tapping his finger on the back of the bench.
“These crazy detectives, huh?” Victor finally said, getting her attention.
Agatha looked properly at him for the first time. Pale skin, dark eyes, bald and a slick smile on his face that only grew in the moment she looked at him. She swallowed hard, and turned her gaze away from him, muttering a quiet ‘mm-hmm’.
“You’re not from here, are you?” He spoke again, after observing her cheeks turn pink.
The girl looked at him again and spoke in a small voice. “I left Gotham when I was young.”
“And you’re coming back now?”
She nodded again, a microscope smile on her face. Looking at her watch once more, she sighed.
“You don’t talk much, do you?” He said and Agatha closed her eyes, sighing.
God, how she hated when people said that to her. No, she didn’t talk much, it was her personality. She was shy and quiet her whole life and she didn’t see any problem with that. No one in her family pushed her to talk more or expose herself to the world, because they accepted her just the way she was. And for that she was thankful. Ignoring the anger inside her chest, she shook her head, answering his question.
“Agatha?” She heard a familiar voice echo through the station.
“Jim!” The girl exclaimed, quickly standing up from the bench, the suitcase still on her hands. A small smile formed on her face and it was the first time Victor, who watched the scene, saw her actually smile. It lasted a couple seconds, but still.
Jim Gordon approached the girl with a confused look on his face. “I thought you were coming tomorrow?”
“Oh, I texted you…?” She said, walking towards him. “I came earlier because I have a job interview tomorrow.”
“You could’ve just called.” He shrugged, giving her a small smile. The same smile she had.
“I’m more of a-”
“Letter person, yeah, I know.” He interrupted her and then quickly pulled her into a warm embrace. She hesitated, but returned the hug, inhaling the familiar cologne he still used after all that time. “Missed you, Peanut.”
“I missed you too, Jimbo.”
The moment was interrupted by detective Harvey Bullock, who cleared his throat to get their attention.
“Oh, sorry,” Jim said, letting go of Agatha. “Bullock, this is my sister, Agatha.”
“Half-sister.” She corrected.
“Right.” He said, watching Agatha shake hands with Harvey and taking the suitcase out of her hands. “Half-sister.”
“Harvey,” The older man said, smiling. “Jim never mentioned he had a sister.”
She smiled. “And I thank him for that.”
“She likes it that way,” Gordon explained, shrugging. “C’mon, I’ll drive you home.”
After saying goodbye to Bullock, Agatha smiled and tensed up as she felt her brother’s hand on the small of her back. What she didn’t notice, was that the assassin that was still sitting on the bench was watching the entire moment. There, he could notice how Jim’s sister didn’t like to wait in the department and how she didn’t like to be touched by him. Her smile was beautiful, but it was fake. He watched as they walked away and when they were almost out, he couldn’t miss the opportunity.
“See you soon, Agatha.” He said and watched she turned around to look at him.
The girl saw a half grin towards her and shivered. Jim didn’t hear what Victor had said and kept walking out of the building. The hitman watched her turn back and chuckled.
“You cut your hair,” Jim said as he took her sister to his… Their apartment.
“You’re not a detective anymore,” Agatha replied, looking at him. He just sighed and shrugged.
“I still am,” His voice cracked. “Just not a GCDP cop anymore.”
“Being a P.I. is not like being a detective at all, Jim.” She argued. There was a small silence before her brother spoke again, trying to change the subject.
“So, a job interview, huh?”
“Mm-hmm.” She smirked. “At a library.”
“A library? Makes sense.”
Agatha chuckled. “What better place for a future writer to work than a library?”
Another silence. Jim was desperately trying to make her talk. In the past years, they only have been sending letters to each other to keep the communication between them, but it was only that. She didn’t like phone calls or anything that involved her talking. He was okay with that, as long as they never stopped communicating. But he missed her. He missed hearing her laugh and see her smile with him. At the moment, she was the only thing that gave him hope.
“How’s mom?” He broke the silence between them.
“Same old, same old.” She sighed. “Going crazy about me coming back, though.”
He chuckled. “Well, she’s not wrong.”
“You’re the one who keeps putting these ideas on her head.” She teased, smiling.
“I’m not wrong either!” He exclaimed, laughing. “Gotham is a dangerous town.”
“Yeah, but as long as I have you, I’ll be safe.”
Jim smiled as he pulled over the outside of his apartment. He carried Agatha’s suitcase and walked her home. He showed her the place, his bedroom, the living room, kitchen and when he showed the bedroom, she smiled. He had bought a bed just for her. She knew it was his idea because the vintage style of the bed and the wallpaper screamed her name.
Agatha felt her heart warm up and looked at him, smiling. “I like the wallpaper. Thanks, Jimbo.”
He put an arm around her shoulders once more and smiled, a genuine smile. “I’m glad you’re here, Peanut.”
The morning went by quickly, and the girl managed to unpack her stuff and tidy up her room. It was past midday when she lied on her bed, sighing. Closing her eyes, she let her mind wander off to her mother. Agatha remembered how she said that town was dangerous to a girl like her. She remembered the criminals she had seen at the GCDP and how they seemed scary. Jim had told her about how some of them tried to kill him and just the thought of it made her shiver.
She, then, remembered Victor, the man who tried to talk to her. She remembered his dark eyes constantly staring into hers, his slick smile, the way he spoke to her. There was something about him that captivated her, now that she thought about it. She couldn’t figure it out what it was.
And with him in her mind, she drifted into a slumber.
Agatha woke up a horrible thirst on the back of her throat once she woke up. The room was now cold and she shivered with the wind that came from the open window. She looked outside and she didn’t see the sun that had peeked away from the clouds when she had laid down on her bed. The sky was cloudy, and grey. Quickly she got up and closed the window, pulling a sweater over her head right after; she walked to the living room, expecting to her brother to be home already, but there was no sign of him. But she noticed there was something wrong with the place. She noticed her white sweater on the back of one of the armchairs in the living room. She thought it was weird the sweater was in the living room, because she remembered separating it to put it in the washing machine. She had a clear memory of her putting it right on her desk.
Another shiver ran through her body, and she noticed the living room window open. Quickly, she closed it and got back to her room. Picking some of her pajamas, she decided to take a bath. Just the thought of laying in the bathtub for hours and then cover herself in moisturizer made her sigh. And it was exactly what she did.
Once she was in the tub, with the bathroom door closed, Victor came out of his hiding spot. It wasn’t like he was planning to stalk her, it just happened. He just couldn’t get that girl out of his mind. The way she acted shy and quiet made him want get to know her. There was probably a reason why she was so closed like that. And it wasn’t like he was going to kidnap her and force her to talk. He’d have to give baby steps. Manipulate her into trusting him. That could work. If she wasn’t too hardheaded like her brother.
Sighing, he walked to the back door and took a last look at the place again. With the certain he would see Agatha again, Victor Zsasz left their apartment.
“I see you’re a little nervous,” Isabella, the librarian commented when saw Agatha’s leg bouncing.
The girl got up early that morning, afraid she’d be late for her job interview. She skipped breakfast, afraid she’d have to go the bathroom and be late for her job interview. She left the apartment half an hour earlier, even though the library was only five blocks away. She was nervous and anxious about the interview and the fact her brother didn’t go back home last night.
“Sorry.” The girl laughed, nervously.
“Oh, that’s okay.” The blonde woman smiled. “Because you’re hired.”
Agatha’s heart dropped. “Really?” She smiled.
“Yes!” The older girl stood up from her seat, guiding her to the exit. “You start tomorrow.”
“Thank you!” She stood up and started following Isabella, smiling. “You won’t regret it, I promise you.”
She left the place with a big smile on her face and almost ran home. She had a great feeling about her future and everything seemed going according to plan. She felt like nothing could ruin her day from now on.
When cutting through an alley, Agatha didn't know how to react when a dirty homeless guy demanded her purse. Her legs started to shake and she almost passed out. Cold sweat started to stream down the back of her neck and her heart accelerated like crazy.
"Are you deaf?!" The man exclaimed, taking a knife out of his pocket.
"I- I-" She stuttered.
He approached her and she backed away, her back hitting the wall. She wanted to scream, but she couldn't even take the necessary breath to do it. It wasn't until the man was almost all over her, that his body collapsed into the ground. On the back of his head, a huge bloody hole made Agatha gag. Bringing her hand to her mouth, she tried to avoid puking when looking for the person who saved her life. She didn't hear a gunshot, which made her think the person was using a silencer. Or maybe she was just too nervous to listen to anything besides her own heartbeat. And then, she saw him.
On the other entrance of the alley, with a wicked smirk on his face, Victor Zsasz raised a hand to her. She saw he was wearing similar clothes to the day before, except his holster was not hidden by a jacket.
The girl felt a chill on her spine and turned away from him, running to safety.
Once she was home, she slammed the door to her apartment and sighed, as she locked it. She wanted to cry, but her brother’s voice interrupted her even before she could start.
“Everything okay?” Jim asked with a mug of coffee on his hand.
Agatha looked at him and sighed. She knew if she told him she was almost mugged and just had witnessed a murder, he would never let her alone again. He’d want to take her to her work, he’d never let her set her feet outside that apartment on her own again. Plus, he’d wanted to get the police involved in the murder and she’d have to tell them that she saw him.
“Yeah.” She lied, trying to smile. “I got the job.”
James put down his mug, with a surprised look on his face and walked towards her. “Congratulations!” He said, while hugging her.
The girl didn’t hug him back, which made the former detective frown.
“Are you okay?” He asked, letting her go. “You’re shaking...”
She hesitated. “I was just really nervous…”
“Hey, it’s over now.” He smiled at her, putting his hands on her shoulder. “You got the job.”
The girl gave him a smile, but it only lasted a second. “You didn’t come home last night...”
“Oh, yeah.” He adjusted his posture. “I spent the night at Valerie’s.”
Agatha frowned. “Valerie?”
“Valerie Vale.” He explained. “The journalist.”
“Oh… Okay.” She breathed out.
“Actually, I was just going to meet her for breakfast.” Jim walked towards the coat hooks and grabbed his jacket.
His sister raised her eyebrows. “So is that serious?”
He shrugged, feeling a little embarrassed. Agatha was her little sister after all and the last thing he wanted, was to think that she knew everything about his sex life. Sighing, he left a kiss on her forehead, even though he knew she didn’t like when he did that, and opened the front door.
“I have to go.” He said, leaving the apartment.
The girl chuckled and followed him. “Wait, Jim!” She waited for him to turn around and look at her. When she spoke, her voice was shaking. “Please come home tonight. I’ll make dinner.”
That was the moment Jim knew something was wrong. He may have lived far from her for a while, but he knew his sister. He knew that shake on her voice and the way she held her hands together. But he decided to keep it quiet and made a mental note on his head to ask her about it later. He then, nodded, giving her a sincere smile and turned around to leave.
When Agatha closed the door, she tried her best to not break down. But the image of the dead man on her feet wouldn’t leave her mind. Tears started to run down her face and she leaned on the door, sliding down to the floor; she tried to fight the panic on her chest when she saw little drops of blood on her white blouse. Running to the bathroom and tearing her clothes off her body, she turned the shower on and entered it.
The girl felt an instant relief once the water started to get warm.
“Everything is fine.” She told herself. “You’re safe now.”