How long has it been since I last saw the accursed blade that now sits within my study?  Whenever it comes back into my possession, I feel both incredible relief and unmistakable dread.  With the return of the relic comes good news and bad news.

The good news that comes with reclaiming the sword is the knowledge that, for at least the last fifty years or so, the ancient weapon had been well protected.  It did not make its way into corrupt hands.  It wasn’t given the opportunity to cause chaos and disarray of its own.  In spite of every other tragic, earth-shattering event that tore apart the world at large during the interim time period, the influence of the sword was kept out of it all.  

Thank the Maker for small miracles.  Of course, with the good news invariably comes the bad...

Now a new caretaker has to be located.

If it weren’t for the demon, I’d simply take possession of the sword myself and become its permanent protector.  It is, after all, an important relic from my own history.  However, the insatiable hunger my demon has for the thoroughly corrupt weapon is too much for me to bear for an extended period of time.  It takes all my willpower to constantly repress Etrigan when the blade is as near as it is, so the sooner I can rid myself of it, the better.  I just wish I didn’t have to transfer this burden and the misfortune it always brings to anyone else.

This afternoon, after performing the scrying rituals necessary to locate the new caretaker, that sentiment increased ten-fold.  The darkness of the round obsidian mirror devoured my reflection, as it always did, and slowly revealed the image of a pair of well-dressed business men sitting in a boardroom full of similarly dressed others.  I was startled to realize that I knew this pair of men all too well.  The elder of the two was none other than Bruce Wayne, one of the wealthiest men in the world and my one of my oldest friends here in Gotham City.  The young man sitting at his right arm was his one of his adopted children, a teenager by the name of Timothy Drake.

I tried scrying for alternate candidates several more times, but to no avail.  The same two figures kept appearing in the mirror each and every time.

Truth be told, it wasn’t that I thought Bruce was not worthy of being the caretaker of the blade.  It also was not that I thought he was too weak to handle it.  Quite the contrary.  Knowing what I do about him, he was the most appropriate candidate for the next caretaker.  The best choice I’ve come across in well over five hundred years, in fact.  

My problem was that I did not want to add any more misfortunes upon that man and his family.  He has suffered more in half his natural life than most would experience over the course of several lifetimes.  His sons have not faired much better, now that I think of it.  To willfully invite more misery upon the Wayne household seems wrong on so many levels.  Doesn’t that man and his own deserve a little peace after all they have been through recently?

Although... If it was really “peace” this family wanted for themselves, then they would not in the profession of donning capes, cowls, and masks and hunting criminals in the dead of the night.  Truly, if they wanted to be well parted from the curse of pain and misery, then the lot of them wouldn't be living in Gotham City in the first place.

Fates preserve me. The Wayne family is a good one.  It always has been and always will be.  I really hope I am not making a huge mistake by inviting these men just a little deeper into my world.

--from the journal of Jason Blood
May 1, 20xx


The End

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