|The League of Shadows|
|Leader(s):|| Ra's al Ghul|
Talia al Ghul
|Former Members:||Bruce Wayne|
|Base of Operations:||Tibet, Gotham City|
The League of Shadows was an ancient and powerful secret society that restored balance to places where, in their minds, the environment was affected by human corruption. It had been a check against this corruption for thousands of years, with some of their activities including the sacking of Rome, the Black Plague, and the great London fire.
The League tried to attack Gotham City by plunging it into an economic depression, but this was stopped by billionaire industrialist Thomas Wayne when he nearly bankrupted Wayne Enterprises to build a monorail system for the city. At the same time, a foreign mercenary in an ancient part of the world was exiled by the warlord that he worked for because he married the warlord's daughter, who was imprisoned along with their unborn daughter in an ancient well-like pentitentery known as the Pit as price for his exile. The mercenary became Ra's al Ghul, the leader of the League of Shadows, and one day his daughter, who was named Talia by her mother, found her way back to him after escaping from the Pit with the aid of a fellow inmate called Bane. The League stormed the Pit to exact revenge over the death of his wife and in the process rescued Bane, who was gravely mutilated by the other prisoners for helping Talia escape from them. Talia and Bane were then trained in the arts of the League, that of theatricality and deception, but Bane was excommunicated by Ra's for reminding him of the hell he left his wife to die in and for loving Talia. A rumor had said that Bane was expelled for being too extreme. Talia resented her father's decision. The League was then based on a mountain in the Himalayas (though other bases around the world may have existed).
The men who have sworn allegiance to the League came from many different backgrounds; former soldiers, mercenaries, assassins, petty criminals and ordinary men. However, all of them shared a common similarity in which all desire to find justice and a hunger for vengeance to redress a crime inflicted upon him or his loved ones. Every member of the League of Shadows are fanatically loyal to their cause. It was this fanatism in which every warrior knows that he is expendable, his life forfeit, if it means fulfillment of their leader's ultimate plans.
A number of years later, Bruce himself joined the League to fight injustice. While traveling the globe, he was recruited from a Bhutanese prison by a man calling himself "Ducard", who saw great potential in the angry young man. During the final test in his training, Bruce saw what the League really was about, that their leader wanted him to lead a mission to destroy the city of Bruce's birth. Bruce then destroyed their base and left the man he believed to be Ra's al Ghul to die there. However, he saved Ducard, his teacher while in the League.
Bruce returned to Gotham City and became Batman to fight the city's crime, and used Ducard's lessons in the martial arts, stealth, intimidation, and theatricality. Meanwhile, the League was busy bringing a fear toxin (created from a hallucinogenic blue flower grown near their Himalayan base) into Gotham by employing some of Gotham's criminals, most notably Carmine Falcone and the Scarecrow. After Batman put both men behind bars, the League was forced to act sooner than expected and Ducard revealed to Bruce that he was Ra's al Ghul. Using a microwave emitter stolen from Wayne Enterprises, they began vaporizing the city's water supply, which the toxin had contaminated. Everyone who breathed in the toxin turned on each other in blind panic. Batman, with the help of Jim Gordon, was able to stop the League before it could vaporize all the water in the city. In the process, Batman left Ra's for dead on a train that crashed, causing him to perish in the crash and resulting explosion.
The Dark Knight RisesEdit
Following the death of Ra's al Ghul for which she blamed Bruce Wayne, Talia ended her resentment of her father and attempted to bring justice over his death and finish her father's work with the aid of Bane, who had become known as a mercenary following his excommunication from the League. Talia posed as Miranda Tate and came to Gotham, and became a shareholder and board member of Wayne Enterprises to fund the creation of a nuclear fusion reactor for which Bane abducted Dr. Leonid Pavel to turn into a nuclear bomb six later.
Batman asked Selina Kyle to take him to Bane after Bruce lost his fortune due to the risky trades made during the League's attack on the Gotham Stock Exchange so that Talia could takeover Wayne Enterprises and the reactor. In Bane's sewer lair underneath Gotham, Batman was challenged to a fight by Bane, wherein he outlined his aim of fulfilling Ra's al Ghul's destiny by destroying Gotham. Bruce was sent to the Pit after his defeat so that he could see it unfold and suffer.
The League of Shadows employed Gotham's older orphans to work in the sewers, as well as John Daggett's construction crews to pour explosive cement throughout the city that was later detonated. The city was held hostage as Bane posed as its liberator in a false revolution. The ranks of the League of Shadows were augmented as former Blackgate prisoners and others joined their army. Talia continued to use her false persona to undermine Batman's allies in various ways such as alerting Bane of a meeting with U.S. Special Forces within the city and misleading Gordon's group of cops into believing that a decoy truck was the one containing the nuclear bomb.
After Batman's return, Talia revealed herself to him and unsuccessfully used her trigger to detonate the bomb and left city hall to ensure its detonation. Bane was shot by Selina on the Batpod, never to be seen again, and Batman fired on Talia's bomb truck in his aerial vehicle and led it to crash where she drew her last breaths, confident her plan for the nuclear annihilation of Gotham was unstoppable. The other members of the League of Shadows in the city were killed or captured by the GCPD. Batman saved the city by sending the bomb far away from Gotham over the water where it detonated.