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Tinman’s weekly camera-less attempt at the WordPress Photo Challenge…

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“Thwack!”

With one mighty punch Batman knocked one of Catwoman’s henchmen into another one, and they both fell backwards down a staircase.

“Biff!” A well-placed kick sent another though a mirror, onto a black-cat and flat against up against a door, causing the horseshoe above it to drop onto his head.

“Kapoww!!!” the final henchman, a stereotype of large muscle and small brain, flipped backwards under a ladder, had a bucket fall from it onto his head and stumbled blindly over to a window, fell out through it and dropped eleven storeys into the Gotham City river.

“Now there’s just you and me, Catwoman,” said Batman.

“Good job I brought my whip, then,” said Catwoman, flicking it with a loud snap.

“Good job I brought my Bat-Whip-Fighter-Offer, then” said Batman, seemingly oblivious to the suggestiveness of Catwoman’s remark. Her astonishingly long legs did not excite him either, nor her remarkably upright bosom.

This was because Batman was five years old, and Catwoman was his sister’s Barbie.

His name was not Bruce, though it was Wayne. He was Wayne Murphy, bachelor schoolboy by day, crime-fighter by, well, later on in the day. He fought the Riddler (an Action Man), the Penguin (a Happy Feet toy from Burger King) and he fought Catwoman.

He supplied all of the voices, all of the sound-effects of “thwack”, “biff” and “kapoww”, and even an imaginary friend, Robin, whose sole contribution to the proceedings was to say things like “holy evil dastards, Batman!” and generally recognise how brilliant Batman was, like a really dense version of Doctor Watson.

Batman put Catwoman into the Gotham City jail, an old hamster cage, late home to an even later hamster, and looked around for other crimes to solve. He jumped onto the Batcycle (well, Bat-tricycle, really), shouted “come on, Robin!” and set off down the garden path in search of further villainy.

Perhaps it was the speed at which Robin leapt onto the back of the Batcycle, perhaps it was the left rear wheel driving over the garden-hose, perhaps Batman was exhausted after his grappling with Catwoman (I know I would be), but for whatever reason the Batcycle suddenly toppled sideways, with disastrous results.

Batman grazed his knee.

His mouth opened and there was absolute silence for a second, as if his indrawing breath was sucking all of the sound out of all of the universe, and then all of that sound escaped in one long, tear-filled wail.

It was his very own Batsignal, summoning Batmum.

She ran to see what had happened and carried him into the house, his little arms around her neck, his little fists clinging to the back of her blouse. She dabbed at the graze with a wet cloth, and then she said the magic words.

“Would you like me to kiss it better?”

He nodded. She bent and kissed his knee, and he felt all of the pain drain away, as if she had sucked the poison from a snake-bite. She stuck on a plaster that would serve no purpose over the next few days other than to show the world how brave he was, and he snuggled down on the sofa, stuck one thumb into his mouth, and watched cartoons for the rest of the afternoon.

And Mum went back to her kitchen, with a heart full of love and a mind trying not to think of the fact that she had just kissed what was essentially an open sore.

Behind every Superhero there’s a supermum.

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