"The Birth of Daredevil"By Nathan Charles (Nate102485@aol.com)
"We find the defendant not guilty."
There was an uproar in the courtroom as the Foreman of the Jury read the verdict. Three fights broke out and the judge slammed his gavel down.
"Order!" He shouted, "Order I say! Bailiff, remove those men!"
The Bailiff responded immediately and with some assistance from the guards outside the courtroom, the six men were escorted to the nearest precinct. Matt Murdock rose from his seat and shook hands with his client, one Wilson Fisk. The two begin to walk out of the courthouse.
"Thank you, Mr. Murdock." Fisk said, "I know I'll always have a good lawyer in you."
"No problem, sir." responded the smiling Murdock.
"It's a shame they would think of me to be a drug lord and Mafia ringleader." Fisk said, "At least I've found one man I can trust."
"I believe you Mr. Fisk." Murdock replied, "How could they connect a murder of some Mafia lieutenant to you?"
"That's what I wonder, but it's all done." Fisk said, "We both win this one. I am found innocent and you retain your reputation for never losing a case. Goodbye, Mr. Murdock and Thank you."
" Just doing my job, sir." Murdock cheerfully said before leaving the courthouse.
"Well, that takes care of that." Matt thought to himself, "Now just have to stop back the firm, do some paperwork, talk to Foggy and--"
Screaming interrupted Matt's thoughts coming from a warehouse across the street.
"What in the name of God is going on over there?" Murdock mumbled to himself before going to investigate.
* * *
"Your ass is ours, Mr. Pondexter!" said the pudgy man, before smacking the blind man in front of him, "I am very disappointed with you. Squealing to Fisk for no reason other than to avoid an ass kicking. That was a big mistake, Ben!"
The pudgy man kicks Ben Pondexter in the throat. Pondexter coughs up a mouth full of blood.
"I couldn't help it!" he weakly moaned in protest, "He had me tied up and said he had knife. Was going to skin me alive!"
"Shut up!" said the man, punching Ben in the stomach, before turning to several men in trench coats, "Well boys, he's all... wait! You hear that?"
The sound of light, almost silent footsteps was coming close.
"Get behind some of these crates!" the man quietly ordered, "We've got a visitor."
Murdock rounds the corner to see the pudgy man standing in front of a tarp covered objected.
"Say you!" the pudgyman yells at Murdock, "What are you doing in here?"
"I thought I heard shouting." Murdock responded, "But, it seems it's just you in here."
"Who the hell are you to be snooping around here anyway?" the man asked.
"My name's Matt Murdock." He answered back, "I'm an attorney."
The pudgy man gets a shocked look on his face.
"Wilson Fisk's attorney?" he says.
"Yes. Why do you ask?" was Matt's next question, "Hey, aren't you Leland Owlsley?"
"Uh... yes, I am." said the man.
"Well, Mr. Owlsley," Matt began, "Would you mind telling me what's under that tarp? I mean, it's shaking a lot."
"Why sure!" Owlsley replied with a smile, "Go take a look for yourself."
"I think I will." Matt walked over and pulled the tarp off to see the bloody battered form of Ben Pondexter. "What in the of... NGH!"
The butt of Owlsley's gun came down on the back of Murdock's head with a sickening thud.
"You can come out now." Owlsley assured his men, "Tie these two together. Bobby! Lenny! Drive over to the Roxxon factory and pick up one barrel of radioactive leftovers."
Bobby and Lenny return to the warehouse within the hour. Owlsley douses Murdock with a bucket of water.
"Wakey, wakey!" laughed Owlsley, "You've both done us wrong. You, Benjamin, told Fisk about our coke deal. Mr. Murdock, you've prolonged our pain by keeping good ole' Willie out of prison. And now we are going to get our revenge. You see this stuff?"
Owlsley puts on gloves and pulled out a handful of glowing, green goo.
"This stuff is going on both your eyes!" Owlsley proclaimed, "This stuff can and will become so fine it will seep through your eyelids and back toward your brains. You'll both be dead within the hour! Bobby! Lenny! Do the honors! So long you saps!"
Owsley walked out of the warehouse, laughing.
Murdock watched as Bobby and Lenny each grabbed a handful of the green stuff. Matt started to scream for help. The last thing he ever saw was the green glob in Bobby's hand hitting his eyes. A burning sensation overwhelmed him and he quickly lost consciousness.
* * *
Matt awoke days later in the hospital.
"Matt!" shouted his father, boxer "Battlin'" Jack Murdock, "Are you awake?"
"I think so." moans Matt, "What's over my eyes?"
"A wet cloth, but there's some bad news I gotta tell you." Jack said, "You're permanently blind, Matt. You're lucky someone heard your cries for help. The paramedics found you and that other guy twenty minutes after they dumped that stuff on your eyes and managed to drain it from your head."
"Dad," Matt says, alarmed, "What day is it?"
"Wednesday." responded the elder Murdock, "Why?"
"Time?" asked Matt.
"6:00 PM." replied Jack.
"Dad, you're going to be late for your retirement match!" Matt said, "Can you notify the doctor that I'm awake and feel fine."
"You want to go, don't you?" asked "Battlin'" Jack.
"Of course, Dad. It's the last one I'll ever hear." Matt responded, obviously talking about hearing being the only thing he could because of his loss of sight.
The doctor was notified and refused Matt's request at first, but after much pleading the doc finally found some sympathy and let Matt leave the hospital and go to the arena.
* * *
Hell's Kitchen Arena, 9:00 PM
Matt was escorted to his usual front row seat, now clad in dark sunglasses. It was at this point Matt realized something strange, he could "see" where he was going. It was like radar; he could detect everything around him, such as the popcorn vendor about five rows up from his position and the usher just behind him. Another realization occurred to him in that moment, he could smell the butter from the popcorn, hear he blood coursing through the usher's legs as he moved, and feel the wind from his motion. His senses had been increased at the price of his sight. This hit Matt like a brick, and he decided he must see his father immediately.
In the locker room, Jack Murdock readied himself for his final fight when a man and a woman approached him.
"Hey," says Jack, "who are you and whadda you want?"
"My name is of no importance, but I work for the Kingpin." the man said.
"Who's the Kingpin?" Jack asked, a suspicious look on his face.
"A very powerful man who needs a favor." the woman answers.
"What's he want?" Murdock says the instant the word favor is uttered.
"He bet on your opponent, Junior Bronsky. He will pay you a damn good sum of money if you throw the fight." the man answers.
"Nada," Jack says, "This is my final fight and I'm gonna win no matter how dumb your boss was."
"Are you sure?" the man asks grimly.
"Yes." Said Jack, "I'm as sure as I'll ever be."
"Your choice." said the woman, "Hope you like the consequences."
The man and the woman turned to leave and Jack turned back to locker. Suddenly, the man whirled around, drew his pistol from his coat pocket and emptied it into Jack's body. Matt found his way to the locker room just in time to detect his father's assailants rush past him and out of the arena. He entered the room to see his father's body in a pool of blood.
"Kingpin..." Jack managed to say with his dying breath breath.
The paramedics pronounce Jack Murdock dead on the scene and Matt spent the rest night at the Hell's Kitchen precinct unable to do anything to help due to his blindness. Matt was told by the precinct's sergeant to go home and get some sleep. On his way back, he quickly designed a plan in his head to avenge his father's death.
"Dad, you taught me so much." Matt thought, "You taught me the ways of the world and you taught me how to fight. You taught me acrobatics so I could impress the kids at school. I think I'll put these talents to use to avenge you."
Matt spent weeks planning, while still maintaining his hours the firm. One day he shared his plans with the only person he can trust. His legal partner and best friend, Franklin "Foggy" Nelson.
"Wait," Foggy said in a skeptical voice. "You're going to be the next Spider-Man?"
"Not Spider-Man," Matt said, "I'll be scarier than him, the criminals will be thinking they're seeing the devil himself, because I'll be dressed like him. I will need at least one weapon though. So, I bought some billy clubs and I've been practicing my throwing and aim. I'm becoming very accurate with them actually. I impress myself. I've also altered the club a bit. I've added a wire on the inside, which I can use to swing from buildings."
"Sly plan." Foggy responded, "Crazy, but sly. Got a name?"
"No." Murdock said, "That's the one thing I need."
"How about... uh," Foggy began, "Devil-Man?"
"No thanks." Matt answered.
"The Devil?" Foggy recommended.
"Uh uh." snapped Matt.
"Hm... I like it!" Matt said with smile, "Daredevil it is!"
Matt finished his plans over the next week. One night, in his apartment in Hell's Kitchen, Matt stands in a red jumpsuit, two D's on his chest. He snaps open the holster on his right leg, whips out his billy club and chucks it at a punching on the other side of his apartment. It hits the bag and bounces back towards Matt, who catches it.
"It's no fluke, I'm still accurate." Matt remarked, pulling the red horned mask over his head, "Now, I need to find out who this Kingpin guy is that is responsible for my dad's death. Ready or not New York, here comes DAREDEVIL, THE MAN WITHOUT FEAR!!!"
Matt leaped out the window and into the night.
Next issue: The first public appearance of Daredevil begins with a bang as he meets the Stilt Man. Plus, the fate of Ben Pondexter. Be here in 30 days!
Daredevil (and other related characters appearing) and the
distinctive likenesses are Trademarks of Marvel Characters, Inc. and are
used WITHOUT permission.