No Kill Policy
by Melissa Minners
Disclaimer and Other Information: It should be noted that all of the characters and many of the locales in this fan fiction are not mine. They are owned by The WB. This fan fiction is somewhat of an homage to the series, though I have used a little liberty here with events. The story takes place some time after Love and Betrayal, so if you haven't read that particular fanfic, I suggest you do before reading this one. Warning: Parts of this fanfic may be highly graphic at times. Reader's discretion is advised. I hope you enjoy. The music excerpt playing in the bar in the background is from Coldplay's Clocks.
Detective Jesse Reese turned in his gun and spare clip to the guard posted outside Tier One of New Gotham Prison. The guard locked away the weapon and ammo and buzzed open the first of two gates. Another guard led the way as Jesse walked down the long corridor toward the second gate. As the first gate slammed shut behind him, he wondered what he had been thinking by coming here.
It had been two days since Dinah Redmond had been attacked and raped by Nico Sylvestri. He had promised Helena Kyle that he would find Sylvestri. For the past two days, it was all he had concentrated on. He'd tried all of his contacts...all except one - the one he was here to see. He didn't want to go back to Helena empty-handed.
He worried about her. Jesse had thought he'd seen her at her worst the night Harley Quinn had taken control of the Clocktower. He'd been wrong. Helena was taking this attack on Dinah very badly. She had been almost inconsolable at New Gotham Hospital the night Dinah was raped. Helena blamed herself for the attack. There had been so much anger in her eyes that night. So much pain. He had called last night to check up on her, but she wasn't at the apartment. She wasn't scheduled to work last night either, so he assumed she was at the Clocktower. He wanted to go to her; to hold her in his arms and comfort her. But he knew that the best thing that he could do for her right now was to find Sylvestri.
And that was why he was here at New Gotham Prison. It was the last place he had wanted to come. But if he was going to find Sylvestri, this was his last hope. The officer led him past the second gate and into a tiny, dimly lit room. Here, seated in a chair opposite a table in the center of the room was the man he had come to see.
"Why, Jesse, two visits in almost as many days. To what do I owe this pleasure, Son."
Jesse was all business as he sat down in a chair on the opposite side of the table from his father, Al Hawke.
"I need some information," he said.
Al Hawke shook his head in mock sadness. "Never a friendly visit. No father/son chat. A shame really..."
"No games, Dad," Jesse interrupted. "Sylvestri attacked a friend. I need to know where to find him."
Hawke sighed. "I warned you about Nico, Son. I warned you to stay away from him. He's bad news. I can't help you."
"Look! He attacked Dinah Redmond - messed her up pretty good. Now the way I see it, you owe her. If not for what you did to her mother, then for saving your life when Frankie Spitz hired that hitman. So, are you gonna help me or not?!"
Helena stood looking over the balcony, lost in thought. Reese hadn't contacted her in two days.
Helena ached to go out on patrol - to flush Sylvestri out of whatever hellhole he was hiding in. She wanted him to pay for the hell Dinah was going through, but she wanted to be here for Dinah as well. Sensing movement behind her, she turned and was slightly surprised to see Dinah standing in the doorway. She had spent most of the past two days in bed.
"Hey, kiddo," Helena said, smiling.
Dinah walked over to stand beside Helena at the railing. She looked out over the city of New Gotham.
"You want to be out there don't you?" she asked. "You want to be out there looking for him."
When Helena didn't answer, Dinah continued, "When I first came here, I was scared and alone. My so-called family was a joke. I had nowhere to go and no one to turn to. Then, I found you and Barbara, and all of that changed. Now I have a family - a real family. With people who I care about; people who care about me no matter what. I don't want to lose that."
"You won't," Helena assured her.
Dinah said nothing for a couple of heartbeats. Then, she turned to face Helena.
"Don't go after him, Helena. He...I couldn't stop him. Couldn't use my powers. Couldn't fight him off. He did something to me. He's meta, Helena. Every time I tried to 'push' him away, I'd get this pain - like a knife slicing through my skull."
Helena put a hand on Dinah's arm.
"It's okay, Dinah. I..."
Dinah shrugged off Helena's hand.
"Don't you get it?!" Dinah yelled. "He blocked my powers. He'll block yours, too. He wants you to come after him! He'll kill you, Helena. I...I've lost so much. I can't?"
"Dinah," Helena grabbed the tearful girl by the shoulders and looked directly into her eyes. "I'm not going anywhere right now, okay?"
"What's going on out here?"
As Barbara headed out onto the balcony, Helena let go of Dinah's shoulders. The teen ran past Barbara and back into the Clocktower. Helena sighed and leaned back against the railing. Barbara raised a questioning eyebrow.
"She was warning me against hunting down Sylvestri," Helena explained.
"Ah," Barbara nodded in understanding.
"But she said something that may help us."
Helena stood behind Barbara as she worked at the Delphi.
"There aren't a lot of metahumans with the power Dinah is suggesting. If Nico Sylvestri does have this power though, he's kept it well hidden. Nothing in the data banks."
Helena let out a frustrated growl.
"But, once we do find him...there's something I need to know. When you confronted him the last time, you said that you felt something."
"Yeah, it felt...weird...like he was trying to push through an invisible barrier."
"And Dinah said that he was blocking her powers - that trying to use them actually hurt."
"I wonder," Barbara muttered, tapping away at the computer keyboard. "Yep, I thought I might have seen something like this before. It was a while back. Nightwing had contacted me about a metahuman with similar powers. Blocking other meta powers wasn't her only skill though. She had an effect on non-metas as well. She would look her subject in the eye and somehow send a shockwave through the subject cerebral cortex..."
Barbara paused as she noticed the frown on Helena's face.
"I know, I know, English, please. Okay, it's like this. Sylvestri is using his power to zap his subjects, overloading a portion of their brains. It has a different effect on different people. In metas, it effectively blocks their abilities. In non-metas, well, maybe that's why he hasn't been arrested in a while. At least not since he reached 18 or so. That could be when he reached his metahuman potential."
"Okay, so why didn't it affect me the same way it did Dinah?"
"Well, the only thing I can think of is that you weren't close enough. In close quarters, it may have a different affect on you?"
The Delphi Monitor emitted a steady beeping, interrupting Barbara and directing her attention to a virtual map on the screen to her right.
"Reese triggered the batring. He's a block away from the police station."
"I'm on it."
Reese paced back and forth. He wanted to go straight to the Clocktower - bring the information straight to Helena - but he wasn’t certain how Dinah would react. He knew for a fact that she would hate that he had gone to his father to get the information he’d needed, that was for certain.
"You found him?"
"Damn!" Reese jumped as Huntress stepped out of the shadows of the alley beside him.
"Well?" Huntress wasn't in the mood to tease Reese for his jumpiness today.
"Can I even get a 'hello' first?" Reese said, a little worried about Huntress' impatience.
"Reese!" Huntress' eyes changed and Reese took a step back.
"Whoa! Easy!" Jesse raised his hands placatingly. "I want this guy, too, okay?"
Huntress just stared at him.
Jesse took a deep breath and continued, "Talked to Dad. He's got this guy in the organization. He's loyal to Dad, but pretending to be on the fence about Sylvestri taking over. Dad's gonna have his man set up a meet. He'll call me with the time and place. We can nail him then."
"How long 'til you know?"
"Soon, Huntress. Soon."
Lights go out and I can't be saved
Tides that I tried to swim against
You've put me down upon my knees
Oh I beg, I beg and plead (singing)
Come out of things unsaid, shoot an apple of my head (and a)
Trouble that can't be named, tigers waiting to be tamed
Helena sat in the Dark Horse bar and waited for Reese's call. She'd already called Barbara to tell her the situation. A million thoughts swirled through her head as she stared at the drink on the bar before her. Chief among those was how Reese could possibly think that they could just charge in and arrest Sylvestri. With his metahuman ability, he would easily overpower the New Gotham cops. No, this would have to be done her way, or not at all.
Confusion never stops, closing walls and ticking clocks
Helena took a sip of her drink and thought of Dinah - how she had begged her not to go after Sylvestri. Then, she thought of how she had found her, lying there in the warehouse. How she had found Dinah in the shower after they had brought her home. And the constant nightmares.
Helena shook her head. How could she not hunt him down? The question was, what to do once she had him. He had to pay. But how? Even if she turned him over to New Gotham PD, would they be able to hold onto him? She didn't think so. But what should she do?
"Hey, Kyle! Phone call!"
She had been so lost in thought, she hadn’t even heard it ring.
"Hey, it's me..."
Helena listened as Reese relayed the information his father had given him.
"We don't have a lot of time so?"
"Reese...no 'we' this time - just me."
"Helena, you shouldn't do this alone."
"I have to. Even if your people could hold on to him...Dinah would still have to testify against him. She's already been reliving this stuff in her nightmares. I won't let some hotshot lawyer make her relive it in a courtroom."
There was a pause on the phone as Reese absorbed what Helena was telling him. "We could still get him on the murder charge. We both witnessed that."
"And with what your father told you, do you think he'd do any time, assuming the cops could hold on to him long enough to go to court?"
Reese thought about that long and hard. He had to admit that she had a point, but there weren't many alternatives. The ones he could think of made his blood run cold.
"Helena, what are you going to do?"
"I don't know yet. Just stay away, Reese. I don't want him to hurt anyone else that I care about."
She hung up the phone without waiting for his response and turned to leave. As she walked toward the door, she removed her comm earrings.