Wednesday, March 23, 2005

143. The omniscient narrator

Hugo Strange sat at his desk completing his notes. He was wearing the costume of his former archenemy, minus the cowl and gloves, which he had removed while he wrote. His attention had been focused so thoroughly on his "patients" that he had barely noticed his own state of arousal, but between the capture of Batman, the challenge of breaking the man, and the thrill of assuming his old identity, Strange was now more turned on than he'd ever been before.

He had neglected other things as well: the flashing light on his answering machine, the piles of mail in the box outside the office, all the other trappings of his life as Gus Tanhoger. Weeks earlier he had ordered his receptionist to notify all his patients that he would no longer be seeing them, and then he had fired her, citing no reason whatsoever. All that mattered to him now--or ever--was the defeat and transformation of Batman. It had become a holy mission, a quest, for him.

Strange walked into the room where his two prisoners slept and admired how skillfully and obediently they had managed to cram themselves into the impossibly small confines he had provided for them. He knew he would have to let them out soon or their muscles would begin to cramp, but first he had work to do, and it was best to keep them cooped up as a precaution.

He stood before the mirror near their cages and took a long, very hard look at himself. While a sober observer would have strongly disagreed, in Strange's eyes the batsuit fit him perfectly, accentuating every ripple of a sleek, muscled body. He looked magnificent, he told himself, reaching for the gauntlets and pulling them on as slowly as possible. The mask came next. He held it in his gloved hands and gazed at it, the ultimate sign of his superiority over the naked addict curled up in a cage at his feet.

It was almost too good to be true, he told himself--and yet it was true. He had won. The limp and lifeless cowl was evidence, was it not? He toyed with it for a moment, stretching it, rubbing it, testing how it looked and felt and even smelled. As he held the mask to his nose and breathed in the lingering traces of its former wearer's sweat, he felt--he knew--that he was absorbing this history into his own bloodstream. His erection grew stiffer and his mind, or at least his instincts, grew ever stronger: soon he was running his tongue along the interior of the mask, eager to taste and digest its secrets. He was delirious with lust and drunk with power. Soon he felt his cock jut against something equally stiff: the bottom of the utility belt strapped around his waist. Again he admired himself in the mirror.

I'm him, he thought, I have become my enemy. I have made his strengths my strengths. I have taken his very lifeblood from him.

Suddenly his arousal seemed like a distraction. If I am to enter the night in this new role, I must clear my head, he thought. He pulled the outer briefs down, and the tights beneath them, just enough that the bunched-up fabric grazed his balls. He clutched his shaft in one hand and the mask in the other and began to masturbate.

It did not take long until he knew that orgasm was inevitable. At the precise second that he was ready to explode, he brought the mask down over his head.

"OH GOD," he moaned so loudly that he would have awakened the caged crusaders had they not been so heavily drugged. "It's true! It's true!!!

"I .... AM .... BATMAN!"