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History

Michael Lane: 1982 - 2016

Born in the Narrows of Gotham City to parents Mitchell and Barbara (nice name) Lane, Michael graduated from Theodore Cobblepot High School. He received a football scholarship to Gotham University, where he played as a linebacker for the Nighthawks until his scholarship was revoked sophomore year for beating his coach unconscious. Enlisting in the Marine Corps, he served two tours of duty in the Iraq War before going back Stateside and graduating the police academy as a beat cop in his old neighborhood in 2006. In the Cataclysm, Michael was among the officers that remained in the city and enforced the law, earning a promotion to sergeant for his valor and courage, as well as saving the life of his future wife, Chanté Coles.

In 2009, Michael and Chanté were married and they had a son named Henry Mitchell Lane in 2010. In 2013, little Henry was killed during a gang war between the Aquista and Odessa mobs, resulting in Chanté taking her own life a month later. Further, Michael Lane’s older siblings Marion and Gwendolyn Lane went missing later that same year, only to be found dead two months later, both apparently victims of Victor Zsasz. Naturally, Michael Lane took a leave of absence from law enforcement.

When he returned to work after eight months, Michael put in for detective, aced the exam, and had his pick of task force assignments. It came to little surprise that Michael chose the Gang Task Force. In his two-and-a-half years working in the Gangbuster unit, Michael Lane has raised eyebrows among the GCPD, City Hall, and a certain cadre of caped crimefighters. He’s known on the streets for his ability to show up out of nowhere to make an arrest, causing many criminals to believe it is bad luck to refer to him by name and instead refer to him as either the “Devil” or the “Ghost”. I feel it’s worth mentioning that due to a rumor of an Internal Affairs investigation, I had Batman and Robin investigate Michael Lane for the possibility that he is in league with the Sons of Batman. We found no such evidence of that. It looks like Michael is just a damn good cop with a zeal for bringing no good gangsters to justice.[1]

The New Azrael: 2015 - Present

In the Spring of 2015, a new Azrael came to Gotham. First there were sighting of the white hood and chain mail armor clad assassin on rooftops. A week later, we had linked him to the deaths of several drug dealers, suspect rapist, and a con artist. Naturally, we were concerned that Jean-Paul Valley had taken up his sword once more, but he assured us that he had not worn his armor (what he calls the “Suit of Sorrows”) in over a year. Still, we did not trust the biker vigilante, so I had Red Robin, Batgirl, and Black Bat follow his movements, but when bodies were still showing up near Azrael sightings, we needed all capes on patrol, so we pulled the trio from shadowing Valley and instead put a plant within the Sons of Batman to learn what they could of Valley’s connection to this possibly new Azrael. That plant was Luke Fox, a former Marine, professionally trained boxer and son of Lucius Fox.

A month after Luke Fox infiltrated the S.O.B.s, we finally had the proof we needed to take Jean-Paul Valley off our suspects’ list when Azrael attacked the Sons’ clubhouse and threw JPV through a wall before Luke managed to cause the hooded assassin to flee. Due to his intervention possibly saving the life of the club president, Luke Fox was invited to have a seat at the club table and though we no longer needed him to investigate Jean-Paul Valley’s connection to Azrael, Bruce decided to keep Luke undercover with the Sons to act as an informant.

Though, we are still uncertain of Azrael’s identity, we do know that he is highly trained, incredibly athletic and strong, and possesses a blue (or is it red?) sword able to cut through steel with little effort. This new Azrael may be connected to the League of Assassins, but Tim has no intel on him and chatter has been scarce in regards to El Penitente and Talia’s whereabouts.

So, for the time being, Azrael remains a dangerous enigma. If seen, approach with caution, call for back-up, prepare to fight, and most importantly: DON’T GET KILLED![2]

Threat Assessment

Resources

  • Metahuman Strength, Agility and Endurance (Derived from the Suit of Sorrows)
  • Highly Trained Combatant
  • Religious Zealot
  • Armed with a Masterfully Crafted Sword

Trivia and Notes

Trivia

  • The Bat Family later manages to capture Azrael, discovering he is in fact Michael Lane. It is revealed that he was working with JPV taking down opposing gangs. Dick keeps Lane imprisoned in Batcave 4 for a few days before releasing him, as seen in Oracle Files: Tatsu Yamashiro 1 and Oracle Files: Sarah Essen-Gordon. Dick also takes the Suit of Sorrows from Lane and gives it to Talia.

Links and References

  1. Oracle Files: Michael Lane
  2. Oracle Files: The New Azrael
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