You've stuck with me this far, and here is where it all pays off! I can't express to you guys and girls how appreciative I am that you have continued to read these segments despite the long time they are taking me to post. If you haven't read them, though, here are the links to the previous sections:
And now I present to you Part 8, the conclusion of World's Finest.
Superman shoots skyward, and the camera changes position so that he flies directly through -- and past -- it. It then circles and we see Superman heading directly towards the sun, and it is obvious that he is gaining energy the closer he gets. At last he stops in place and allows his body to float, striking the same crucifix pose that he did while floating in space in Man of Steel. He closes his eyes and allows himself to soak in the sun. As he does so, we get two quick flashbacks, no longer than a second or two each, both from the first film: 1) the moment after his first failed attempt at flying when he looks towards the sun and closes his eyes as he soaks in its rays, and 2) right after the battle with the World Engine, when he is seen, nearly powerless, reaching for the sunlight.
Superman floats there for a few moments, and the movie goes totally quiet. Then, at last, he opens his eyes, and we see his fists clench. He spins around so that he is facing earth once again, and with one final breath, speeds off, leaving the sun behind and now seemingly more powerful than ever. His body is but a speck on the screen in no time.
We get another glimpse of the fight back down on earth, and as promised, Batman is indeed holding his own against Luthor. Nevertheless, Luthor is holding his against Batman, which is fairly surprising, given that Batman has had years and years of training under his belt while, as far as we know, Luthor merely threw the suit on and went on a rampage. This won't be touched in this film, but it could open up more character development for a future film -- Lex Luthor might be a little more experienced in hand-to-hand combat than we assume he is.
Luthor and Batman battle it out, and Batman relies mostly on gadgets to handle Luthor, since hand-to-hand combat would do very little considering Luthor's huge amounts of body armor. Luthor's face is bleeding on the side, but other than that looks fairly unscathed. He has revealed that there is some sort of firearm system built into the suit, and is currently shooting rapid fire at Batman, who is just narrowly dodging the bullets. In the background, the crowd still stands in awe, possibly having never seen Batman at work...or, in the daytime for that matter. Police have also arrived, and surround the scene. We get a quick shot of Lois, whose eyes are not on the fight, but trained on the sky. We hear a boom, and we know that Superman has entered the atmosphere once again. We see a streak of red and blue head downwards at a great velocity, but in an extreme exhibit of skill, Superman slows down just seconds before he crashes into the ground, and just hovers a few feet above it, looking at Luthor and Batman as they continue to play chess with one another. Superman hovers a safe distance away, but we can already see that the kryptonite is affecting him. Seeing Superman there, Batman places a foot on Luthor's battle suit's thigh and propels himself over to the forearm piece, where he hits a button, which in turns slides all of the kryptonite compartments shut. Despite being swung around by Luthor (who screams menacingly, now seemingly totally out of control), Batman manages to gain a great enough grasp on the forearm piece to dislodge it, taking away Luthor's leverage. With one final throw, Luthor sends Batman crashing towards a building. Batman lands back first against the wall and crashes to the ground, obviously shaken. He still holds the forearm piece in his hand.
Luthor turns to Superman, who now lowers carefully to the ground. Luthor looks down at his forearm, realizing that his advantage is now gone. Superman looks over to Batman, who nods at him. Superman nods back.
"It's over, Luthor," Superman says, stepping closer to Luthor and his battle suit, which tower a good three feet over him. Superman and Luthor lock eyes, and from their faces we get a clear message: it is far from over, and in fact, it has only just begun. Luthor seems to have regained his cool, but his eyes are still filled with anger, and with a lingering expression he just looks at Superman, but clearly admits defeat this time, showing no signs of further struggle. A smile is on his face. The chest piece of the armor swings open and Luthor jumps out of the suit, landing on the ground just in front of Superman. At the same time, the SWAT team floods the scene. The armor stands erect behind Luthor, who in turn stands erect before Superman, the smile refusing to leave his face.
"I guess it's a good thing you had your cowled savior here to save you, eh, Supes?" Luthor says as his hands are cuffed behind his back, motioning to where he had thrown Batman. Both men glance in that direction, but the Dark Knight is gone, having regained his composure and disappeared. Superman smiles and shakes his head, obviously impressed by Batman's swiftness. He turns back to Luthor, the smile still on his face, and crosses his arms:
"Yeah, I guess you could say I owe him a big debt. Hopefully one day I'll be able to repay it."
Luthor nods, and the cops hold him in place, allowing him to finish his words with Superman.
"And I hope you know we aren't done here," Luthor says, his words playful as if the entire thing was but a game. "No no no! Yes, I may have lost this time, but that doesn't mean you won. Batman won here, let's just make that clear. I beat you, but Batman beat me. I just want to specify that, okay?" He sounds like a little child complaining that someone cheated. "Like I told you before: you and I were made to challenge each other, so next time, put up a better fight, will ya?" He flashes Superman a final wink before allowing the cops to shepherd him to the nearest police car. He sits elegantly in the back seat of the car and the door is closed, but not one time do his eyes leave Superman's. A smile is on his face. Superman looks right back at him, but his face has grown serious. He watches as the cop car pulls off, seemingly contemplating Lex's final words. Then he turns, and all at once a mix of crowd and media surround him, bombarding him with questions. He smiles and begins to answer them, and the scene fades to black.
The news reporter from earlier flashes to the screen, her face all smiles. She looks directly towards the camera and begins speaking:
(NOTE: As the news reporter talks, we get multiple shots of all of our main characters watching the report: Martha in Kent Farm; Lois and Jimmy in the Daily Planet office, Perry in his own office, Bruce in his office, Alfred at Wayne Manor, etc.)
"As of yesterday, it has been confirmed that Metropolis' own Superman did not set LexCorp Tower aflame as was once suspected. Forensics scientists have determined that the fire instead started inside the building, but the perpetrator still remains unknown. The owner and founder of LexCorp, Alexander Luthor, would not release any official statements regarding this newly found discovery, and has in fact been uncharacteristically media quiet ever since he was put behind bars a week ago after his failed attack at murdering the Man of Steel and harming innocent civilians. His official trial is set to take place starting this upcoming Monday." Footage from the fight plays, but the news reporter continues talking:
"For those of you who do not know, the incident last week started as a reconciliation interview for Superman, conducted by the Daily Planet's own Lois Lane." Silent footage from Lois and Superman's interview plays in the background, "The interview was an attempt to clear Superman's name after the accusation of him being involved in LexCorp's partial destruction. The interview was going successfully until Luthor interrupted it, clad in a salvaged piece of Kryptonian armor and spacesuit that his scientists had discovered on the moon. Using this space suit's enhanced strength and abilities, Luthor attacked the Man of Steel, visibly weakening him to the point of near collapse." We now see Superman crawling backwards away from Luthor's green-glowing armor, Superman's face reflecting that glow. "Luckily for Superman, Gotham City's renowned nocturnal vigilante, the Batman, arrived just in time to help save the day, marking what could very possibly be his very first act of heroism conducted during the daylight. He allowed Superman just enough time to get away and gain a little more energy, and then helped end Luthor's rampage. Luthor was immediately escorted to jail, and Superman was subject to yet another -- this time unexpected -- interview. Sadly, Batman disappeared before anyone could question him, an act of elusiveness which is reportedly a well-used tactic of his, say many Gotham City residents.
"In other news, it has been announced that Metropolis' Ground Zero -- the site leveled out by General Zod's World Engine a few months ago -- will be under construction shortly as the plans go through to build a recreational park there -- Centennial Park -- roughly the size of around ten football fields. As a recent addition, the mayor of Metropolis has announced that in the core and center of the park, a statue of Superman will be built in honor of his promise to protect this world to the best of his abilities. Details have not arisen about the statue just yet; the mayor has only clarified that..." the words fade away slowly.
We now see a young female receptionist, early twenties, watching the news report from across a big lobby. She sits behind a huge oak desk, which houses about four other receptionists, all young and female. After the news reporter finishes with the story, she smiles and turns back to her computer, and begins typing. We hear a cough, and she looks up. She smiles.
"How may I help you?"
"I have a meeting with Mr. Wayne?" comes the response, and the camera shifts so we can see that it is Clark talking. He pushes at his glasses and smiles at her sheepishly. The camera now pans around so that we get a greater view of the lobby, and we can see a huge Wayne Enterprises logo plastered on the wall behind the desk.
"Clark Kent," he replies, and at the same time his satchel slides off of his shoulder, spilling its contents to the ground. He sighs and looks exasperatedly at the receptionist, who laughs, finding his clumsiness obviously adorable. He bends down and slides all of the contents back into the satchel and rises back up. He smiles again. Pushes at his glasses once more.
"Okay, Mr. Kent, Mr. Wayne is indeed expecting you. Elevators are around the corner to the right, and you'll find him on the fifty-fifth floor."
Clark nods at her. "Thank you." He walks towards the elevators.
Bruce sits at his desk, messing with a Rubik's Cube, slouched back with his feet propped up. We see Clark make his way down the hallway and he begins to knock, but before he can,
Clark smiles and grabs the handle, pushing the door open. Bruce places the Cube on the desk and stands up, walking across the office to meet Clark halfway, and they shake hands. Bruce smiles, and the door closes behind Clark.
"What brings you to Gotham, Mr. Kent?" Bruce asks.
"I wanted to thank you," Clark says, his face serious but wit the appreciation showing in his eyes. "I would probably be dead right now if it weren't or you."
"No cover story?" Bruce says with a wink, making his way back to his desk. He motions for Clark to sit. "You don't need to interview me or anything? Just dropping by for a visit?"
Clark nods. "Nobody knows I'm here. I just wanted to book the meeting and come say thank you."
Bruce nods, once again thumbing the Rubik's Cube. "Well it's the least I could do. You aren't near as bad as I'd suspected." He winks.
Now Clark grins. He looks down for a second and then looks back up. "How did you know about the sun? How did you know it would give me strength?"
Bruce doesn't seem startled by the question. "Like I told you before, Kent, I know everything about you. Hell, I probably know stuff even you don't know."
Clark eyes him scrupulously, but doesn't ask any further. Instead, he reaches into his satchel, pulling out a small, square, latched box and sliding it across the desk to Bruce. Bruce takes his attention off the Rubik's Cube and looks at the box for a second, and for the first time, he actually looks taken back, slightly puzzled.
"Lead," he says, nodding towards the box as he looks back up at Clark. Clark nods.
"Hmm." Bruce pouts his lips out a bit and raises his eyebrows, as if impressed. He unlatches the box and raises the lid, and a green glow casts over his face. On the other side of the box, Clark smiles happily, unaffected by the green glow. The camera pans around, and we see that within the box is a huge chunk of kryptonite. Bruce closes the box and looks up at Clark. "Why?" he asks.
"Let's just say that this is my token of truce," Clark responds, re-latching his satchel as he does so. "I want you to know you can trust me, Bruce, and I figured there was no better way than this. And, in case I ever do go rogue -- which I won't -- I want you to know that you're in control. This is me saying that I trust you, and I'm just asking that you do the same for me."
Bruce continues nodding his head, tapping his finger on the box. He closes his eyes for a second and then reopens them, a look of appreciate covering his face. He stands up and sticks his hand out across the desk. "Nice doing business with you, Mr. Kent."
Clark stands up and grasps his hand -- for a moment, the camera is zoomed in on just that, the two men's grasp -- and he smiles. "Mr. Wayne." They let go of one another and Clark turns around, making his way to the door. He closes it behind him.
Bruce stands there for a second, and then sits back down at his chair. He smiles at the box, and we know at that moment that Superman/Clark has officially gained his trust. He slides backwards in his chair and slides the drawer to his desk open, placing the box inside it. But then he grabs something else out of it, and pulls that the thing out of the drawer, holding it up so that it is clear for all of us to see.
It is a ring box, but no regular ring box. It is lined with lead, very similar to the box Clark has just given him. Bruce eyes the box for a second before placing it atop the desk, and then pops the box open.
Inside there is a golden ring, topped with a beautiful green stone that gives off a bright green glow -- a kryptonite ring.
Yes, he respects the fact that Clark has given him a piece of kryptonite as a memento of trust, but the fact remains that Batman trusts no one...he was prepared just in case, and had gotten his hand on his own piece of kryptonite and forged it into a ring in case the need to use it ever presented itself. It is here that the movie finally establishes just how prepared Batman always is. Clark has earned his trust -- it's the thought that counts -- but he was ready just in case.
Bruce shuts the ring box and places it back in the drawer, right next to the box that Clark just gave him. He smiles down at the drawer one more time and then slides it shut, and the scene cuts.
Lois stands out on the balcony of her apartment, her hands on the rail as she looks out at the nighttime sky. Her eyes are empty, looking off into nowhere. A smile is on her face.
"I believe we have an interview to finish, Miss Lane," a voice says from behind her. Startled, she turns around to see Superman there. She looks into his eyes, and they seemingly have a silent conversation for a few moments, standing about ten feet apart. Then she walks towards him and into his arms, and after a moment of prolonged gazing, they kiss. They slowly back towards the sliding glass doors that lead into her apartment. She slides the door open and they pass through, closing the door behind them. The curtain shuts, and the scene fades to black.
Slowly fading in from black, we see a dark and gloomy building, old and looking like a haunted house. We hear echoing screams in the distance, but otherwise it is silence as the camera pans. It is nighttime outside, apparently the dead of night. The camera continues panning and then centers on the main driveway leading into the building, blocked by a gate. Atop the gate are two words: 'Arkham Asylum.' A pair of headlights slowly pull up to the gate, allowing us to read the words clearly. From the back the vehicle is clearly recognizable: it is the Batmobile. Without any needed interaction, the gates begin to open, screeching the entire way, as if they haven't opened in centuries. The Batmobile eases past the gates, further down the drive.
Now we see an old hallway made of dark brick. It is dirty and unkempt, and stretches on a long way in both directions. We hear a door slam in the distance and then heavy footsteps. In a blur of movement, a figure steps past, cape billowing behind them. The camera shifts behind the figure and we get a clear view of Batman from behind, his cowl bobbing up and down with his steps and his cape dragging along the ground behind him. The camera follows him, giving us a short virtual tour of the prison. We hear laughs from through the place and we hear more screams, but once again, other than that it is silent. He passes a few cells without looking into them, walking straight towards a cell at the very end of the hall, deep in the heart of the prison. He approaches the bars, but we do not see in. The camera circles around so that we see his face, formed in a grimace.
"Why'd you do it?" he asks, straight to the point.
"Do what?" a high-pitched voice innocently asks, playfulness in the voice. The camera stays focused on Batman.
"You know what I'm talking about."
"Do I? Because I realllllllllly think you should be more specific, Batsy. I've done a whollllllllllle lot of things by now, and you know that." A chuckle.
Batman sighs, looking straight froward and still grimacing. "Why'd you frame Superman for trying to murder Lex Luthor?" It is said more so as a statement than a question.
"What??? Me? Batsy, I'm hurt that you'd think that. Ask any of the guards; I never left this cell! I've been hear the entire time!" The high-pitched words drag on, each one playful.
Batman closes his eyes, exasperated. He doesn't say anything, and it is silent for a moment.
"Oh, fine, I'll bite. You're no fun!" Another chuckle, this one a bit louder. "Yes, yes, I did it. But why, you ask? Jealousy, desire, over-protectiveness? I don't know! It's what needed to be done!" A cackle, similar to what Superman heard within LexCorp, just not quite as loud. The camera shifts so that we see a shadow on the ground -- the shadow of a thin, lanky figure, apparently sitting against the wall further in the cell.
Batman's eyes open again, but remain squinted. "What do you mean?" he asks.
"Oh silly Batsy. Silly, silly Batsy. They call you the World's Greatest Detective, but sometimes you're just oh so silly, you know what I mean?"
"I did it for us, you silly bat! That Superman fellow dragged you alllllllllll the way to Metropolis, so I had to follow you, OBVIOUSLY."
"Like you said, though, you were locked up."
"Batsy," come the reply in a condescending tone as if the man were saying 'oh please, like that's never stopped me before.' Batman shrugs. "Don't you see? I had to come get you back! Had to make you lose his trust! And well...well, my plan didn't work apparently..."
"But why?" Batman asks, slamming his fist against the bars, which shake as a result. "Why did you need me to lose his trust?!"
The camera pans around, and the figure stands up, stepping from the shadows. We get a clear view of the Joker, unlike one we've ever seen in a live action film before. He's almost a mix of Ledger and Nicholson together, but truest to the actual comic book depiction than we have ever seen before. He is in an orange jumpsuit, but his face is tall and thin, with mangled green hair and bright red lips, his face covered in white makeup. His eyes are wide and crazy, and his teeth a deep yellow.
"He was stealing you from me!!!" The Joker breaks into a chorus of laughter, and even as the scene fades to black, the laughter continues. Even as the credits roll, the laughter continues, slowly fading away to silence.
I hope you enjoyed my plot for my own Man of Steel sequel, and feel free to post your opinions and overall reviews in the comments! Be sure and let me know what your favorite and least favorite parts were! If you'd be interested in reading more of my future work, be sure and leave me some tips in the comments or even leave some plot lines that you'd like me to adapt into a plausible movie or book! I'm open to all suggestions, and I am always grateful to critiques in my work whether they be positive or negative! Thanks for staying with me through all 8 of these pieces, and hopefully see you soon!
What was your favorite arc of the World's Finest Plot?
If you were to read a future piece of my work, what superhero would you prefer to read?
If I were to continue writing original plots for "movies," would you prefer them to be standalone plots or sequels to 'Man of Steel' or 'World's Finest'?
As I said above, if you have any other questions, comments, or suggestions, be sure and leave them in the comment section below! I love to hear everyone's responses and I look forward to writing more in the future!