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You always told me, Bruce... focus on what I want to achieve, and it'll happen. Well, want to know what I want now, huh? I want you dead.
— Arkham Knight

Chosen by Batman to be the second Robin following the departure of Dick Grayson, Jason Todd differed from his predecessor and mentor in his attitude towards crime. Angered at Batman's refusal to kill his nemesis the Joker, Todd tracked down the Joker and attempted to bring him down. However, the Joker defeated and captured Todd, torturing and seemingly murdering him in a tape sent to Batman. In reality, the Joker faked Todd's death and continued torturing him both mentally and physically in an effort to turn him against Batman.

Eventually escaping (or being set free), Jason ended up in Venezuela, where he founded and trained a mercenary army with state-of-the-art tech and weapons, alongside donning his own version of Batman's armor before deeming himself "The Arkham Knight". He then took to monitoring Batman and his allies after the Arkham City incident, before allying himself with Scarecrow and his plot to infect Gotham with fear toxin.

On the night of the actual attack, the Knight's mercenaries quickly brought Gotham to it's knees, with the Knight growing increasingly impatient with Scarecrow and demanding to kill Batman. Eventually, Todd's anger gets the better of him and he attempted to kill Batman in a tank battle, with his failure leading to the destruction of the Cloudburst, a weapon crucial to Scarecrow's plan. After fleeing for some time, the Knight ambushed Batman in the subterranean area of Gotham with a giant drill, and managed to destroy the Batmobile after a brief chase.

As Batman attempted to free Commissioner Gordon from the Scarecrow, the Knight cornered him and revealed his identity. Batman's shock angered him further, and Jason attempted to kill Batman once again. After his final defeat, Jason fled, initially broken, though he ultimately switched sides and rescued Batman from Scarecrow's clutches. Abandoning the persona of the Knight and instead becoming the Red Hood, Jason swore to protect the people of Gotham from crime, but in a much more ruthless fashion.

Battle vs. Winter Soldier (MCU) (by BeastMan14)

Alexander Pierce mentally cursed as he watched TV reports of the Siege of Gotham. First, he has to deal with Fury forming the Avengers, now he had to deal with a sociopath using toxins to destroy a city. Agent Sitwell, who had, up until this point, been waiting for Pierce to speak, cleared his throat and said,“Perhaps this would be an ideal time to activate Project: Insight.” Pierce shook his head. “No. It isn’t anywhere near completion, and if that maniac spots the Helicarriers, he’ll activate the Cloudburst. What we need is a way to neutralize the Cloudburst as a threat. It would be even better if we could secure it somehow.” He paused for a moment, then smiled as a plan clicked together in his head. “Prep the Soldier.”

‘’Later, in Gotham…’’

Jason Todd paced back and forth in his control center, contemplating. He had just lost a battalion of tanks, but that didn’t matter. He had hundreds more. He had more men. Better gear. A tactical advantage. He had everything, but Bruce just wouldn’t fall. He scowled at the thought of Bruce eluding him. ‘’But he won’t. I’ve planned for everything. Tonight’s the night he pays for abandoning me.’’ Stepping forward, he tapped the commander of his men on the shoulder and gestured for him to move. “Let me take control.” The commander shrugged. “Yes, sir. Not that I’ve had any luck.”

Placing himself in command of the tanks, Jason kept a wary eye on both the HUD and the cameras he had placed on the tanks themselves for just a glimpse of the Batmobile. He didn’t care what Scarecrow wanted, Bruce WAS dying tonight. “Where are you?” Suddenly, a voice spoke over his comms. “Sir, we’ve got activity.” Jason shot out of his chair and immedately responded, “Where?” There was hesitation on the other end. “That’s the issue, sir. We’ve got reported activities on both the tower by Wayne Enterprises and at ACE chemicals.” Jason gestured for the commander to get a vehicle prepped, and said,”He’s going for the Cloudburst. I want a dozen men in camo and en route to ACE chemicals. Tell them to bring jammers, turrets, camo suits, everything!” “Understood. What about the tower?” “Forget the tower. Alpha target is the priority!” Loading his pistols, the Arkham Knight stormed out of the room. ‘’There’s no escaping this time, Bruce.’’

‘’10 minutes later…’’

The Knight stepped into the main area of ACE Chemicals, pistols drawn, flanked by two of his men. “Does anyone have a visual on this guy?” “No.” “Negative.” “I’m not seeing anything.” The mercs were cautious in their approach, prepared for anything the Batman might throw at them. Unfortunately, their target wasn’t the Batman. With a massive crash, the Winter Soldier propelled himself through a fragile wall and crashed into two mercs. Disoriented, they were quickly finished off by the Soldier, who threw his bloodstained knife into the neck of a soldier descending the stairs. In a matter of seconds, the Soldier vanished. “We’ve got three men down!” The remaining soldiers gathered around the three corpses, shocked. “Jesus. I thought you said this guy didn’t kill!?!” The Knight, using his helmet to check the men’s vitals, paused before responding, “...He doesn’t. Spread out! I want somebody to find the target, and DO NOT hesitate to kill him. This isn’t Batman!” Pointing his grapple gun at a nearby gargoyle, the Knight took off to survey the area, leaving his men to find the threat.

With a moment of uncertainty, the troops split up, with 4 going to investigate further inside, while the other 4 set up turrets. Nervously scanning the vents, the squad leader stopped dead when he spotted...something under there. “Oh shi-” He was cut short when the figure burst out of the vent, grabbed him, and tossed him directly into the rest of the squad. In one fluid motion, the Soldier grabbed his dropped rifle and opened fire, tearing the mercs apart. The men assigned to turret set-up panicked, and the Soldier brought down two of them before throwing aside the empty gun and sidestepping a shot from a sniper rifle. Rolling out of the way of turret fire, the Soldier propped his foot against the wall and used it to give him enough momentum to jump over the turret. Drawing his Skorpion, the Soldier riddled the turret’s surprised operator with bullets in mid-air, then landed and came to a skidding halt. Briefly stopping to tear out the turret’s circuitry, the Soldier ran at the last of the Knight’s men and slammed into him before he could get a shot off. With one well-placed punch to the throat, the Soldier finished off the last merc.

Standing up to disable the turret, the Soldier was suddenly knocked back by an unseen assailant and tumbled down the steps. Disoriented, he looked up to see an armored figure, wearing a mixture of what appeared to be the Batsuit and urban camo, standing at the top of the stairway. The figure pointed at him, smugness dripping out of every word. “Believe it or not, I’ve heard of you. You sabotaged an operation of mine last year. I don’t know who you work for-” He drew a pistol and pointed it at the Soldier, “-but I’m not going to let you ruin this.” His gloating betrayed him and gave the Soldier just enough time to recover and dodge the shot. “You’re fast, I’ll give you that, but you don’t know who you’re dealing with.” Quickly drawing his grappel gun, the Knight fired it at the Soldier, who pulled him in. Prepared for this, the Knight ducked under the Soldier’s inital punch, then smashed his fist into his opponent’s face. The Soldier staggered backward, and the Knight pushed forward with a barrage of punches and kicks, each one connecting with, but barely phasing, the Soldier. Surprised, the Knight paused in his assault, giving the Soldier enough time to recover and throw a punch. Enhanced by both a cybernetic arm and his own strength, the Soldier’s punch collided with the Knight’s chest, knocking the wind out of him and sending him flying back.

Jason rolled out of the way of the Soldier’s follow-up attack, and mentally kicked himself for slipping up. ‘’I’ve never seen anyone hit that hard. I’ve got to change my strategy.’’ Quickdrawing his pistols, Jason opened fire, and the Soldier threw up his arm and blocked the shots. When Bucky lowered his arm, the Knight was gone, but his voice echoed throughout the building. “Brute strength alone isn’t going to win this for you! I can outthink you, outmove you, and bring you down!” Cautiously turning to survey his enviroment, Bucky quickly jammed another clip into his Skorpion. A glint out of the corner of his eye alerted him, and gave him just enough time to dodge a round from a sniper rifle. Rolling into cover, Bucky returned fire on the gargoyle where the shot had come from, but the Knight had already moved. “You’re not fast enough!” Jason couldn’t help but sneer as he leveled his next shot at the Soldier’s head. It was time to end this. Suddenly, the Soldier turned and opened fire on him, forcing him to move again. ‘’Damn it. He must’ve figured out my position. Time to move.’’

The Soldier walked slowly, keeping his pistol level. He had to focus, or this “Arkham Knight” would kill him. He had been briefed about what this merc was capable of, and knew he couldn’t slip up. The Knight had moved from the gagoyles, which meant he was somewhere on the ground with him. Unless he was in the vents. The realization dawning, the Soldier looked down just as the Knight burst out of the vents, grabbed the Soldier by the neck, and slammed him into the ground. His oppenent pinned, Jason threw punch after punch. “You think you can just come in here and ruin everything?” *PUNCH* “I’ve planned for years!” *PUNCH* “You’re not changing anything!” *PUNCH* With the last blow, Jason drew his pistol and put it to the Soldier’s head. “Say goodbye.”

Suddenly, there was pressure on his stomach, and then Jason felt a sharp pain, knocking him off of the Soldier. Looking down, Jason saw a gunshot wound, and looked up to see the Soldier stand back up, Skorpion in hand. Forcing himself to his feet, Jason moved to throw a smoke bomb, but the Soldier moved too quick. He grabbed him by the chestplate and threw him into the wall, tearing the armor loose with a snap. Jason forced himself to his feet and drew his pistol, but the Soldier lunged forward, grabbed his arm and was greeted with a punch to the jaw that knocked his facemask clean off. Like a wild animal backed into the corner, Jason fought with everything he had. Every last bit of his strength behind every blow. He couldn’t lose here. Not yet. Gritting his teeth and using his training from Bruce, he vaulted over the Soldier and delivered a kick to his back. He moved to draw his other pistol, but the Soldier whipped around, drew his knife, and plunged it into his chest.

Letting out a gasp of both shock and pain, Jason fell onto his back. Gritting his teeth through the pain, he moved to grab his grapple gun, but Bucky brought his foot down, crushing Jason’s arm. “The Cloudburst. Where is it?” Jason looked at the Soldier with a look of confusion. “That’s...what you’re here...for?” He chuckled, or at least tried to. “I had...my men move it to a different location...as soon as we were en-route. I...told you...I was smarter…” Angered, the Soldier paused and held a hand to what appeared to be an earpiece. “Secure his helmet. We may be able to use it to track his men.” Jason’s smile vanished as the Soldier reached down and tore off his helmet, clearly acting on someone’s orders. Confirming that Jason’s wounds were fatal, the Soldier calmly walked off.

As Jason lay on the ground, alone and dying, a tear slid down his cheek. ‘’No. This wasn’t how it was supposed to happen. Bruce and I were supposed to-’’ And on that final thought, Jason Todd, formerly known as Robin, slipped away.

‘’’Several hours later…’’’

The militia commander shoulders slumped in grief as he delivered the news over comms. “We got men to investigate the silenece at ACE Chemicals. The Arkham Knight...is down. I repeat, the Arkham Knight is down. They’re bringing his body in now.” Suddenly, a new voice came in. “Well, then it looks like I’m in command now.” The commander turned nervously to see none other than Deathstroke standing in the doorframe. “Sir?” Carrying himself with a self-assured air, Deathstroke walked into the room and said,”Everyone resume your usual activities. Leave Batman, and whoever this new target is, to me.” Deathstroke left just as quickly as he had entered.

‘’Back in Washington...’’

Alexander Pierce glared at a nervous Sitwell. “So you failed to obtain the Cloudburst?” Sitwell nodded. “Yes, but we have men working to determine the location as we speak. We’ll deploy a team as quickly as-” Pierce held up a hand, silencing him. “No. I’ve got another man lined up to handle this part. Isn’t that right, Agent Garret?” The other agent, who had been standing quietly in the corner, stepped forward and grinned. “Yes sir. I’ve got my best men on stand-by. Just give me the signal and we’ll get this Cloudburst in no time.” He turned to walk out, but stopped. “And please, call me John. You do outrank me.” He followed it up with a sneer. ‘’For now, at least.’’ Garret gave a half-hearted salute on the way out. “Hail HYDRA.”

‘’Winner: The Winter Soldier’’

Expert's Opinoin

In spite of his superior gear and training from Batman, the Arkham Knight ultimately wasn’t prepared for a superhuman foe. The Winter Soldier was stronger and more experienced, enabling him to prevail in this battle of brainwashed heroes.

To see the original battle, weapons and votes, click here.

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