It is amazing the level of clarity that can be achieved by laying in a puddle of one’s own blood. Mistakes that have been made become clear: I really shouldn’t have choked out my lawyer. Little petty slights seem trivial: Cobblepot really isn’t worth my time. And death is simply a fact: Croc is going to kill me.
With all this running through my mind I find a strange sense of calm. Lately, the last year or so, I have lost much of my way. I lash out without thinking. I’m boxing out of my weight class. I have for some time been letting my anger get the better of me. That is what put me here.
No more rage. Gotham makes monsters and mad men. I know I am mad, only a mad man would believe he could conquer the underworld of the greatest pit of crime and corruption on the planet. I was a monster even before the explosion. Only monsters survive in Gotham. I was a thinking monster before, and I think it is time for a change.
Maxwell has served me well, but I think it may be time to shed this life. Strange how simple the idea is to me. My memories tell me that I have been Maxwell always, but so much of the world around me tells me otherwise. I’ve been avoiding such thoughts for long enough.
There are only two men I know of who could have inflicted the wounds I saw on Bruce’s corpse, Thomas Elliot and myself. Elliot was a friend of mine from medical school, but if that is the case why do I have so few memories of him? Why do I always think Bruce, not Batman? Why does Kyle’s claim that he worked with Batman ring false?
I know I am being played, but by who? It isn’t either of the al Ghuls, they have let me flounder about in my madness. It isn’t any of the obvious players. Someone else is sitting at the table and playing, but who? Worse yet, what if it is I who is playing Maxwell.
The gaps in my memory seem to be filling in piece by piece. Things that I should have known before jump back to me moments or hours after I should have known them. Wheels within wheels. For example: Why didn’t I tell my lawyer that I have quietly been buying up Wayne-Powers stock for over a month? I am the third largest shares holder. Why didn’t I tell him that I have a contract that I signed with Wayne Biotech for use of my protoplasm formula in a government R&D project? It is obvious that this is what my building was being used for. Why didn’t I tell him that I had been hired to do a private autopsy on Bruce? I was. I can by who, but I was.
I feel like I am trapped within my own head, dancing the steps of some grand plan I set in motion before… before the bomb. Or was it someone else?
Why, why if I loved my wife and daughter so dearly can’t I even remember their faces? Why?
I’m obviously getting low on blood. My mind is fracturing. I can feel a scratching in the back of my mind and all I can wonder is, where is Cassius? My luck has run out. The reaper comes to collect his toll, and Cassius will be coming to collect his pound of flesh. I can feel it.