Chapter 27: James Gordon
James Gordon always felt that he lived in his older sister's shadow, as far as his Mother and Father were concerned. Belinda was the good-looking one. Granted, less academically inclined than her younger Brother, despite early signs of remarkable intelligence, she was, nonetheless, the person that anybody who was somebody, wanted to be with, and get to know. Later on in life, it was nearly always to be his experience, that people only wanted to make friends with him, so that they could actually get to know her.
This is probably what led to his tendency to lead a double life, rather timid, reluctant, even sheepish on the one hand, but secretly rather fancying himself as a hero, on the other, and secretly harbouring ambitions to enter the world of Law Enforcement.
He had finished High School, a few years after Thomas Wayne, Harvey Dent and Oswald Cobblepot, with reasonably good grades, but, like so many, both in the years above and below Oswald, James too had had to rely on Cobblepot 's outstanding abilities in Maths and generosity of spirit, before he could manage a grade high enough to enter Police Training. He developed quite a friendship with Oswald, and would always remember the debt he owed him.
He was going to begin life in the Force at the bottom, on the Beat, as it were, which would help fund the courses he would need, if he wanted to make Detective. James Gordon seriously wanted to make Detective. Gotham was absolutely awash with crime, before it would become awash with corruption and Harvey Dent ! The young James wanted to make a difference.
It was during this period in his life that he would first meet, and then develop a lifelong association with, someone who would, in the course of those many years, become his 'Right Hand Man', Officer Patrick O'Hara, someone, indeed the only one, in whom James Gordon could place his trust implicitly.
It was during this period of his life that he built up an invaluable network of contacts, both in the regular and criminal communities alike. He was a very congenial young man, and this congeniality caused him to be able to make friends very easily, out on the Street, and appear rather harmless, even ineffectual. Funnily enough, James Gordon came rather early to the conclusion, that to 'get ahead' in the Force, it really did pay to seem somewhat harmless and ineffectual !Over the years, he would come to play up to this image, when he finally made Detective, and catch many an individual unawares.
But an eye-opener indeed it was, and something that caused him a not inconsiderable conflict of emotions, was the occasion on which, after painstaking detective-like work on the Beat, he finally discovered the whereabouts of the Penguin, and was instrumental in the arrest of the man on whom he had once relied and most admired. Such was the cost of the Uniform and the Badge, he thought to himself. You have to be prepared to bring even a friend or an acquaintance to justice, if required. In that sense, James Gordon was totally incorruptible and beyond compromise.
Of course, his career in the Police corresponded almost entirely with the transition from crime on the streets, a prolonged period finally brought to an end by Harvey Dent and his S.W.A.T. Teams, to corruption in high office. Much to his own surprise, time and time again, this rather unlikely candidate for success would be favoured above peers, whose record far exceeded his own, until he finally made Gotham's Commissioner of Police, with Dent as his Assistant, and O'Hara as Chief. Unfortunately for James Gordon, nether his Father nor his Mother lived to see the day.