Here’s another ‘Meeting God’ fic. This time, it’s Jason Todd, aka the Red Hood.
I hope I did the character (and the Creator) justice.
…I also don’t really like the title of this one.
Jason heads to the edges of the All Caste buildings. He sits and stews, thinking about what Ducra keeps telling him; to drop his fiery anger for what Joker did and for what Bruce could not do.
His training has kept his skills up, so he’s surprised when he didn’t hear a person walk up to him.
He turns, taking out the All Blades. He stares down the old man in simple robes. Jason doesn’t move, assessing the potential opponent. “Who are you? You are not part of the All Caste. I have met all of the monks here.”
“I am not the All Caste, no,” the old man states, “but you know me, Jason.”
“I have never met you before.”
The man walks to the ledge Jason was sitting on. He sits down slowly, placing his cane on the ground next to him. “Sit, please.”
Jason doesn’t move to sit, but calls his blades to disappear.
“Jason, you will only see this sunset once,” the man assures.
Jason looks out at the horizon. The red, orange, and pink swirls with wisps of clouds. He then sits a few feet away from the man, leaning his back against a decorative slab on the edge of the nearest building. “I haven’t usually looked at sunsets.”
“Why not?” The old man smiles, “They are lovely.”
“…I’m not used to them. Bad memories.”
“Not many sunsets in the Gotham streets,” the old man comments sadly.
“…You know I’m from Gotham,” Jason says, his hand inching to a knife he keeps on his leg.
“I know a lot of things,” the man states. “I also know that there are a multitude of differences between a sunset and an explosion.”
Jason’s fingers grip the knife handle. “You know I died.”
“Many have,” the man states. Jason detects obvious sadness. “But few ever come back.”
“Pfft, yeah…” Jason lets go of the knife and crosses his arms. “Lucky me…”
“Are you not happy that you are alive?”
“Not everyone wants to live,” Jason mumbles, “it’s not a happy thought, but… I didn’t have a happy life.”
“It wasn’t completely bad,” the man states.
“You didn’t have to live it,” Jason sneers.
“You helped lots of people.”
“And still many more have yet to pay for their crimes.”
“Even after growing up in Gotham, you still have a kind heart, Jason.”
“I doubt the world shares your opinion.”
Jason watches the man as he quietly marvels at the sunset. “…What do you want?”
“Want?” The man asks, “I want to sit here. With you.”
The old man looks at Jason. “I thought you’d like some answers.”
“Answers,” Jason scoffs.
“Well, go on. Ask me.”
“Ask you what?”
“Anything. Anything at all.”
Jason looks out at the sunset, not really watching it. He smirks, then looks at the man, “How did I come back to life?”
The old man nods slowly, “That’s a very good question.”
“Talia found me wandering, dropped me in the pit to heal me, but no one knows how I came back to life in the first place.” Jason crosses his arms smugly, the smirk still present. “So tell me, old man, how did I come back to life?”
“…Because you still had much to do on Earth.”
“…That’s not an answer of ‘how.’ That’s if I asked ‘why’,” Jason says.
“I don’t see them as different questions.”
“Really?” Jason scoffs.
“The how ties into the why. Why did you come back? Because you had more to do. How did you come back? Because the person who can defy death knew you had more to do.”
“Who is this? Ra’s?”
“No. He has cheated death, perhaps. But he has never died and risen again, of his own accord.”
The man looks at Jason again. “Who?” He smiles, “I think you know who, Jason.”
Jason looks at him, then snorts, “Wait, wait, so you’re saying that there’s a Creator, that somehow believes that I’m that important? That I have something more I need to do?”
“No,” the man turns to the sunset again, just as the sun’s edge disappears, “I am telling you that I know you are that important. You always have been. After all…” the man chuckles, then looks at Jason with fondness, “I did create you.”
Jason stands up, “I’m done.” He starts to walk away.
“Jason, what did you experience when you died?”
“A lot of heat,” Jason snarks.
“It was empty, wasn’t it?”
Jason stops walking.
“You couldn’t move, or breathe. You couldn’t use your senses?”
“Jason.” The man was standing, and walks over to Jason, “when you die again, on this path your cutting for yourself, that is where you will be again.”
Jason stares, trying to keep the fear off his face, “So what? I’m supposed to follow you? Listen to you? I already have teachers that give me cryptic life lessons, I don’t need another. But I’ll make sure this second life is put to good use.”
Jason then leaves the man there. The man sighs, then looks out at the stars amidst the inky black sky.
Jason sets his helmet down in his safe house. He takes care of a couple wounds he has, then looks out the bullet proof glass window. Gotham is beautiful, but disease ridden. Jason believed he was the cure. It’s been a few years since he came back, caused trouble with Joker and Batman, then disappeared so he ‘family’ wouldn’t find him.
Tim has called him some, Dick’s insisted they meet up to talk. Jason has yet to. He doesn’t know what he’ll do about his family. Bruce hasn’t tried to reach out since Jason held him at gunpoint, ordering him to kill Joker to prove he cares.
He turns from his city and switches on the radio. He takes off his armor and showers. As he’s preparing a lunch, the radio goes through an ad before changing songs.
Suddenly, a song comes on that doesn’t fit the radio stations genre. ‘Fear is a Liar’ plays softly. Jason turns to the radio to turn it off, but then stops as the chorus starts.
He sits down at the bed and listens. The song’s second verse hits him hard. He wipes a tear from his eye deciding to turn it off, until “that grace could never change” touched his ears.
He sits back, remembering that evening when someone claiming to be God talked to him. He wants to brush off the coincidence that this song just played here. But…
He walks to the glass doors leading to his shielded balcony. He leans against the railing, watching the sunrise over the city skyline.
“Are you… Are you still up to talking?” He asks the air.
Nothing but the wind replies him. It brushes his cheek and ruffles his hair a little. He sighs, looking at the street below him.
‘I knew it.’
“Impatient as ever.”
Jason turns to his left. The man is standing there. Jason notes that he doesn’t look that same. Before, he was an weathered man with a cane. Now, he stands tall and looks younger. But Jason knows, he can just sense, that this is the same person as before.
The man turns from the sunrise, smiling, “Where would you like to start, Jason?”