Spoilers ahead for this week's Detective Comics #976.
Batwoman is forming a new heroic team in Detective Comics, one that will serve as a "global peace force" but will specifically not work with Batman.
And Tim Drake is deciding whether to go all Booster Gold-ish, as he's being offered specific information about the future so he can prevent the worst of what's to come.
These situations come after the death of Clayface, a Batman ally-gone-bad that Batwoman herself killed against Bruce Wayne's wishes. Batwoman was kicked off Bruce's Wayne's team of "Gotham Knights," and several of Batman's allies went with her.
The story brought up the question - is there a point of last resort at which it's acceptable to kill a villain? Batman, as usual, fell on the side of "no, never." Batwoman, a U.S. military veteran\, unsurprisingly said the answer was yes.
And the team fell apart - some of them more than others, as they deal with a team member's death.
Now, Batwoman's leading a new team (with her father's assistance) that, so far, includes Azrael and Batwing. The team will not just function in Gotham City - in fact, Batwoman says they can "leave Gotham to Batman" - but will instead conduct missions around the world.
How did Detective Comics #976 go down?
The issue begins with Cass fighting the electric-charged Lord Shokka and some Yakuza who are trafficking kids in Gotham City. Suddenly, on the fifth page of the scene, Cass gets an assist from Clayface - it turns out this is a flashback.
Cass is telling the story of this battle to Leslie Thompkins - a counseling session of sorts. She's not feeling like a good guy without Clayface there to remind her and Batman is pretty upset when he hears about it. Leslie informs Bruce that he's not helping Cassandra by pulling her deeper into the Bat-world without helping her deal with her demons.
Next, the story reveals that Batwoman, Batwing, Azrael, and some Colony agents are working together to stop some nasty Talons who are robbing a ship on behalf of the Court of Owls.
Chalk one up for the Colony team.
Trouble At Home
Meanwhile in the Batcave, there's not a lot of love flowing between Tim Drake and his mentor Batman. Not only has Tim been sneaking into the Batcave at night to update the Gotham Knights program (when he's supposed to be recovering from his concussion), but Bruce believes that Tim's desire to restart the team is motivated by fear and desperation.
He thinks that Tim – after escaping from Mr. Oz's prison - should have gotten "help."
Lots of arguing follows, with Tim saying Batman needs help from other people, and Batman being all angry about other people getting hurt.
And he orders Tim to talk with Leslie Thompkins.
Tim says screw that. (Well, he actually says, "#$%@ that.")
As Tim rides away on his motorcycle, Bruce tries to get the computer to seal the passageway so Tim can't get back in.
Tim, being the computer genius he is, overrides that order.
Just when Batman's resisting the idea of teamwork, Batwoman's embracing it. She asks Azrael and Batwing to help change the approach of the Colony, turning its weapons non-lethal but more effective.
"Lethal force should only ever be used as a last resort," Batwoman says.
The team discusses attacks on the Court of Owls and the remnants of St. Dumas - with Jean Paul specifically asking for resources to find his father.
The story switches to Tim Drake, who's still ticked off at Batman. He's approached by Ulysses Armstrong, who says he's stolen the "entire history of the future" from the future Tim Drake.
He wants to share the information with Tim, and he's hoping the hero will "turn the tide" against the dark, twisted future.
The story continues in March 28's Detective Comics #977.