Genre: AU OC
Pairing: Desdemona/Joker, Bruce Wayne/Lily, Matilda/Dick Grayson
Disclaimer: If I owned them, I'd be too busy fucking to write my name...
Author Notes: Comments are love, bitches! Thanks to everyone who took the survey. Previous Chapter links are beneath cut!
Extra Special Thanks to jokerluv! I love you doll! It wouldn't be nearly as good without you!
Joker drew the shot slowly, eying Desi as she smoothed her lipstick and rubbed her teeth for measure. She licked across her teeth quickly before wrapping his belt around her arm, pumping her fist to locate a vein. Joker snapped his fingers for her arm, and Desi offered it calmly. "What's got you in such a mood, hmm?" she asked. Joker thumped the syringe, irritated. "It's a full dose this time." he huffed, "In theory, you should be fine by now but it's still... a... risk." Desi lay across the table beside her extended arm, and giggled softly, "Risk, shmisk." she chanted, "It would only kill me. Live a little." His expression showed fleeting concern as he prepped the vein and inserted the needle. He lifted her head by her hair until she sat up and depressed the plunger. Desi flexed her arm, closing her eyes and settling limply into the chair.
Joker stared at her curiously as she took a deep breath, and laughed a low sinister laugh. Her eyes remained closed, and she moaned as her laughter quickly subsided. Desi took another deep breath, cracking her neck slowly before opening her eyes and looking back to the Joker. She licked her lips slowly and stood up, walking around the table and flopping into the Joker's lap. He checked her pupils and she grabbed his vest with both hands and kissed him. She tilted her head, opening her mouth to invite his probing tongue as she passionately massaged her tongue against his. He wrapped his slender fingers around her face and smeared her lipstick with his thumb. The kiss lasted several minutes, and Desi pulled quietly from him. They continued to hold to one another, "You owed me that." Desi uttered breathless.
"You are insane." Joker whispered amused. Desi tugged his vest, "Well you're evil. What do you say to that?" Joker continued to rub her face gently, "You're ready." he said satisfied, "You feel ok?" Desi blinked slowly, "I'm exhausted, actually. Think I might go to sleep." Desi kicked her shoes free, letting them fall to the floor before the Joker lifted her to her feet. "I'm going out. I need supplies." The Joker explained, "Rest while I'm gone." Desi nodded, rubbing her eyes as she walked over her overstuffed chair and slumped across it. Joker went for his coat, his grin nearly carved into his face. He continued to the door when Desi called out, "J? Gring back s'mores." she called. Joker laughed, stepping out and pulling the door behind him as Desi dozed lightly in the chair.
Matilda limped her way down the hall slowly and stopped in front her door. She inserted her key when her door opened suddenly before her. "Where in the Hell have you been?" Dick cried, staring at her unbelievably. Matilda limped past him, making her way down the hallway to her bedroom. "I was in the hospital." Matilda answered, "I woke up there, and came straight here." Matilda peeled her clothes off slowly, wincing mildly as she tossed the items in her hamper and laying across her bed. Dick stared down at her, "Why were you in the hospital?" he asked, dropping to his knees so he could look Matilda in the eye. Matilda lay on her face, sighing somewhat painfully. "I went after that file, and I ran into the Joker. He pushed me out of a window, but don't worry, I've only got a mild concussion and a twisted ankle." Dick was flabbergasted, shaking in his rage. "How could you be so stupid?" he demanded.
Matilda sat up, angry at his tone. "Excuse me?" she asked. Dick stood his ground, his tone unwavering. "Mattie, this isn't Mom, Dad, and 'good old Uncle J' anymore. These people will kill you. You can never go out alone like that again." He looked at her, sighed and turned away, pacing in his frustration. Matilda's expression softened as she watched him, and she tried to offer explanation. "I thought I could handle it, and I figured you would fuss so I just went. It was foolish in hindsight, and for that I am sorry." Matilda shrugged and Dick stopped in front of her. "Dammit Mattie." Dick sighed, dropping to the bed to hug her, "Do you have any idea how worried I was? I looked everywhere, and in this business you have to always be prepared for the worst." Matilda cradled his head, "I'm sorry." she whispered. He sat up, examining her closely. "You're hurt?" he asked.
Matilda shook her head calmly, "I'll be fine, just a little sore." Dick nodded, calming himself. Matilda laid back of the bed and took a deep breath. "I got the file. I will need some info, but I will be packing and leaving as soon as I get the last bits." Dick began rubbing her sore muscles as he listened. "That feels really nice, Dick. I'm just going to rest a bit first." Dick nodded, saying nothing as he worked out the stressed muscles in silence. "He really scared me." Matilda said timidly, "That's never happened before." Matilda sighed, and Dick rubbed her soothingly. "It's ok. You're home and safe, nothing will happen to you here." Dick heard her breathing heavily, and lifted his hands as she dozed. Dick brought the comforter over her and kissed her cheek before crossing the room to his phone.
"Bruce, it's Dick." He said into the cell, "Yeah, she's here, and she's safe. Listen, she's about to go on a trip and we might need some info." Dick pulled the door closed and walked into the hall. "Is it all right if we come by? I dunno, whenever she wakes." Dick stopped in the kitchen, "Really? Great. Thanks, Bruce. How is Lily?" Dick began putting together the breakfast tray as he listened, preparing for when Matilda wakes.
Crane couldn't believe himself. He stood across the street from his own home, and he was racked with nerves. Escaping Arkham was easy enough. he thought, Dammit, this is my home. It's my wife. Why am I so afraid? But he knew precisely why he was afraid. The emptiness in his wife's last call echoed in his head, and he knew that whatever waited for him in that house was going to be heartbreaking at best. I might die today. He thought, and immediately wished he had said more to Matilda. Crane took a deep breath, and crossed the street. The door was unlocked, and Crane opened it to reveal his home a shambles. The walls were full of holes and covered with gibberish. Many lighting fixtures were pulled down and there was a small fire smoldering in the center of the living room which lightly filled the place with smoke. All of the framed photos and mementos were either destroyed or missing.
Crane stared in disbelief, walking into the center of the building and looking at the remains of his entire life with his woman. "How do you like it?" Desi asked from the darkness. Crane turned surprised to find his wife draped across his office chair, her right leg hoisted up over the arm of the chair and her head resting on the other. Her eyes were dark, but shined with an animalistic and dangerous prowess. Crane stared at her, unable to speak. She was beautiful, but she looked deranged and Crane teared at the sight of her. Desi threw her leg off the arm the chair and shrugged as she stood, "Ehh, everyone's a critic." she mumbled, stretching. Crane swallowed hard, and Desi did a double take. "Aren't you in prison?" she asked confused. Crane looked around sheepishly, "I came to check on you."
Desi 's eyes narrowed, and she laughed spitefully. "Ahhh, a criminal!" she gasped, "Shame on you." Desi tapped her nails loudly along the counter top as Crane stared. "Well?" she asked blankly, "Check on me." Crane winced at the loud tapping, "I just thought...but you look..." Crane sighed, "What has happened to you?" Desi stopped tapping, looking snidely at him. "I had a husband. I had a child." Desi rolled her eyes, "Now those things are gone from me. One might call that loss." Desi cut cruel eyes at him, "I call that rebirth. I'm alive again, and I'm never going back." Crane blinked, dropping his head to the floor. "I love you." he mumbled. Desi failed to blink, "I know."
"You promised to bring her back. You said you'd take care of me, but you didn't. You went away, and even now the best you can offer me is to take it on the run or wait alone for you once you go back." Desi said. Tears fell from Crane's eyes as he replied, "I'm sorry. I did fail then and I understand why you're angry at me." Desi looked at him sympathetically, "Oh, I'm not mad at you. I'm mad at me. I stayed. I looked in the mirror every day and died a little." Desi lit a cigarette, sucking the smoke with her mouth open wide. "You were always weak, you can't be held accountable. I...let this happen."
Crane looked at her, visibly upset. "You had quit smoking." he said, stunned. Desi said nothing, walking up to him and blowing smoke all around his face in response. Crane flew into a rage, grabbing Desi by her shoulders and shaking her violently. "This isn't you." he demanded, "What the fuck did he do to you? Darling, where did my wife go?" Desi's humor left her as he shook her, and she broke from him. She tossed her half-smoked cigarette into the fire in the living room. She groaned hatefully at him, pacing away and sending smoke over her slender shoulders as she walked away from him.
"That's right, my darling." Desi cooed, "I can't possibly do anything without someone to lead me." Desi turned on her heels and stared at him. "So you're proud of this?" Crane asked, bewildered. "The bastard manipulates you, turns you from a responsible businesswoman into a self-agrandizing whore, and you want respect for that?" Desi blinked, shaking her head slowly. "What did you say to me?" she demanded, her voice going suddenly shrill. "Who is Schiff?" he asked. A look of unencompassing hate washed over her, and Desi rushed Crane swinging. Crane panicked, loading up and gassing Desi before she could tackle him.
Desi stopped cold, standing before him as the cloud dissipated. She sniffed loudly, and began to laugh dramatically. Crane shook, fear mounting as Desi continued to laugh darkly. She wiped her mouth, and shook her head aggressively before returning her cold gaze to Crane. "Very cute." she chuckled, "My turn." Without warning, Crane felt a tap on his shoulder and turned to see the Joker, and feel the spray hit his face. Crane clutched his face, collapsing to the floor as he felt pain spread from his abdomen. He looked up as he started to chuckled uncontrollably.
The Joker grabbed Desi around the waist, pressing to her back and swinging her around as she laughed. Crane heard her laughter mix with the Joker's mischievous groans and fought to regain his composure fruitlessly. The Joker noted his struggle, turning Desi and kissing her fiercely as Crane watched. His vision grew fuzzy, and the last thing he saw before blacking out was both Desi and the Joker looming over him, Joker's makeup coating the lower half of Desi's face. They looked down at him peacefully as Crane's laughter died, and he passed out.
The box arrived at the offices of GNN quietly enough. It sat on the large wheeled cart in the newsroom all morning until the news manager opened her scissors and dragged them across the tape, breaking the seal. The offices were abuzz at the first confirmed acts of the Joker since his escape were the news of the day. Everyone in town was talking about the crew of clowns that swept Arkham Asylum, releasing twelve of the most dangerous criminals in Gotham. Several additional criminals used the diversion to escape, and police were baffled with only decorative Joker cards left on the twelve chosen criminals. Each card with the message, warning of what's to come. It had only been hours since the escape, and it was already being reported as "The twelve days of mayhem."
The news manager huffed, opening the large box and sifting through the colorful tissue paper to produce a small DV cassette. The manager studied the tape curiously, looking down into the box for anything more. Her screams filled the entire floor, and she collapsed at the feet of Mike Engle. Mike looked into the box, covering his mouth as he stumbled back and tripped over the woman on the floor. "Call the police." he called out, "Now!" The crowd scattered, and Mike reached reluctantly for the fallen tape. "Get this dubbed straight away." he ordered, "I want it done before the police arrived."
The police arrived, collecting the box and transporting it to the medical examiner. "What's the story?" Bullock asked as he walked into the office. The medical examiner sighed, removing his glasses to rub his eyes. "They aren't from the same body." he explained, "It looks like we got ten men and about nine women, but we won't know for sure until we run DNA." The medical examiner shook his head, "What kind of person delivers a box full of body parts?" Bullock scoffed, "A fucking nutcase, that's what kind of person." He looked across the table at the many parts. "any sign of sexual trauma?" he asked. The medical examiner shook his head, "I'll get back to you with the DNA soon." he offered as Bullock turned to leave.
Bullock pulled his cell phone, calling the precinct. "Yeah, its Bullock. Get me the Commissioner." Bullock stopped at his car, listening to the hold recording as his thoughts lingered on the body parts. He spied a newsstand littered with papers containing the headline, "Gotham Holds Breath Over Joker's 12 Days of Mayhem" and it dawned on him: Ten lords a'leaping and nine ladies dancing. "Goddamn." He said aloud as the call returned. "Commission Gordon hasn't arrived today." the officer informed. Bullock examined his watch. "What do you mean, he isn't there?" he demanded, "He hasn't come in at all?" Bullock listened impatiently, suddenly worried. "All right, thanks." Bullock said, unlocking his car and heading to Gordon's house.
"Now, it's very simple." Desi explained, "If you ever want to see your wife again, you'll bring a substantial sum of money from your bank to the pier. I'm talking millions." She smiled at the Joker, who snacked on an apple as the banker's wife sat sobbing in his lap. "And no cops. You call the cops, and we'll not only kill your wife we'll kill them all. Got it?" The Joker gently stroked the victims hair, shushing her as she wept desperately to his delight. "Central pier at dusk." Desi instructed, walking over to the victim. She ripped the tape from her face and held the phone to her face.
"Herbert! Herbert please help me!" she begged, "Please, they're gonna kill me!" Desi lifted the phone back to her ear, "Hear that? Don't fail her now." Desi dropped the phone to the floor, replacing the tape over the woman's mouth and snatching her out of the Joker's lap. The Joker hopped to his feet elated, lifting the woman on his shoulder and walking to the door. He tossed her into the trunk and slammed it as Desi climbed into the passenger seat. "Ok, that's the last banker's wife..." she said, reviewing her list, "a-nd the crew liberated the Arkham twelve." Joker huffed, "And let that idiot of yours escape."
Desi rolled her eyes, refusing to qualify his comment. "So, that's twelve crazies running, eleven and ten happen tonight, nine and eight are already at GNN..." Desi looked up the Joker as he drove, "we're making good time." Joker kept his eyes on the road. "You know, I'm working awfully hard for this gift." he chided. Desi looked up from her notebook, "Oh, and you goddamn love it. In the past two days we've dismembered people, kidnapped, tortured, and rigged more charges than I've ever seen before." Desi climbed across the seat to him, "And by tomorrow we'll be ridiculously wealthy, on the top of every news story in town, and Crane will be out of our hair for good."
The Joker groaned in anticipation, "Merry Christmas." he said ominously. Joker's eyes never left the road, and as he navigated the road at top speed, the woman in the trunk slammed about noisily. Desi settled in her seat, listening the woman's sobs peacefully as she anxiously awaited the evening's activities. She went for the radio, listening to the news as it reported the Arkham breakout. She switched along, listening to each report. "You're a hit again, best beloved." Desi said proudly. She nibbled along the Joker's ear as he pulled off the road along the pier. "All three channels." she purred softly into his ear. The Joker grinned wide, parking the car and lingering there to enjoy the report.
"Bruce?" Lily called from the door, "Dick and Matilda are here." Dick kissed Lily's cheek as he stepped in, followed by Matilda. Bruce walked up, shaking Dick's hand before he wrapped an arm around Lily. "Honey, why don't you take Matilda into the living room while Dick and I handle some business." Bruce advised, "We'll get this out of the way and then we can have a nice lunch." Lily nodded, and showed Matilda through the foyer. Lily observed her limp concerned as she walked into the living room. "My goodness, are you ok?" Lily asked. Matilda looked back at her, "Oh, I'm fine." she said dismissively, "Tell me, how are you and Bruce?"
Lily blushed as she flopped down happily. Matilda smiled, "That good, huh?" she commented. Lily bit her bottom lip bashfully, her eyes lingering on the idea of him. "I've never been happier in my life, Matilda. I mean, I worry from time to time about Bruce because he's so intense, but.." Lily leaned back, shaking her head as she looked to the ceiling, "God I love him." Matilda smiled, reaching for her hand. "I'm so glad to hear that. You both deserve it." Lily shook her head, "I don't deserve him." She shook her head, "I don't plan to let him in on that though." Matilda laughed softly as Dick walked to the door. "Mattie, hon, can you come here for a second?" he requested. Matilda looked to Lily, who waved her on. "Go ahead, I'm going to check on lunch." She said, rising to her feet. Matilda went with Dick as Lily went for the kitchen.
"What did you come up with?" Matilda asked as she walked down to the Batcave. Bruce sat in front of the computer, imputing info from the file. "An address." he replied. He pressed a button, and a sheet began printing up the info. Matilda examined the paper, reading over the information. "Lily looks fantastic." she commented, not looking up. Bruce turned in his seat thoughtfully, "I understand, it isn't easy to confront the consequences of the past." he offered, "Anything I can do to help you, just ask." Matilda nodded, looking at Bruce thoughtfully.
"When does your flight leave?" Dick asked. Matilda checked her phone, "Seven pm." she responded, "This info is an incredible help, thank you Bruce." Bruce stood, brushing himself off, "I have an apartment in London." he explained, "I want you to stay there. The doorman will cover everything, and you can take all the time you need to sort this out." Matilda pursed her lips, unsure of what to say as she nodded shyly. Bruce smiled, nodding once affirmatively. "Well, if we're done here we should head upstairs. Lily is waiting and you'll be needing to prepare for your flight soon."
Matilda started up the stairs but Dick held back. "Bruce..." he began, "you and Lily, she knows everything right?" Bruce looked back at him confused. "It's just that, with Matilda leaving I was thinking maybe..." Dick continued. Bruce studied him cautiously, "Everything alright with the Nightwing venture?" Dick stuck his hands in his pockets and nodded. "I just thought that it would be nice to." Bruce smiled, glad to be missed and relishing that his presence being missed. "Let me think about it." he answered, "I have Lily so, but I'm always here to help."
Desi stood with the line of women inside the the storage silo. "Now, after this we have to head downtown. The boys took care of five for us." she called to the Joker. He skipped merrily along, looking out for the first of the bankers. "I can't decide who looked worse: the mayor's sons or the Gordon family." he howled, laughing loudly as he spied the first arrival. "Ok, line 'em up!" he called. Desi began pulling each woman to her feet. The first bank arrived, unloading his large bags on money and handing them to the Joker. After examining them, Joker called his number into the silo and Desi cut the tape on the corresponding woman and sent her running out.
"Don't forget now, we know where you live." Joker warned, laughingly, "Merry Christmas!" The woman ran out, clinging to her husband as she cried hysterically. "Oh, thank god! Susan thank God!" he exclaimed. He pulled her to his car, looking at the Joker as he shut the door. The Joker looked back at him smugly, smirking at his obvious superiority. He took a step forward, sending the man rushing to his door and speeding away. "We got another one!" Joker called satisfied as the car pulled up. Each banker brought with him several bags of money, and each wife nearly wiped out running to their husband.
As the last one pulled away, the Joker began tossing the heavy bags into the silo as Desi walked to the door and lit a cigarette. "Absolutely beautiful. We robbed eleven banks today from this silo." Desi exhaled slowly, "Easiest money ever made." Joker chuckled as he continued to throw bags past her. Desi looked at all the bags as she rolled the cigarette between her fingers. "What's the take?" she asked. Joker finished tossing bags, walking over to take her cigarette. "Hundred, maybe more." he replied, "Not bad, Desi baby." Desi pulled the Santa hat, putting it on the Joker as he smoked her cigarette.
"I have something for you." Desi sang as she adjusted his hat. The Joker grimaced, looking down at her. "I bet you want it." she continued, laughing. Desi produced a small radio remote and waved it before him. "What is that?" Joker asked as Desi leaned against his chest. Desi gently touched her nose to his. "Push it." she teased. She took his hand, pulling him to the docks. Joker licked his lips, pushing the button. The ground shook beneath their feet as all six ferrys exploded and began sinking into the bay. Joker watched the fire light up the sky with a look of contented bliss. "I've always wanted to see that." he admitted.
"Come on, let's lock up." Desi said, "We gotta get downtown, its already after dark." Joker watched another few moments quietly before turning happily and following Desi. "So that's twelve, eleven..." he started. Desi turned on her heels as she walked, "Ten is all set up for tonight." she interjected. The Joker continued, "Eight and nine are all sewn up." The Joker laughed, "And six was..." Joker stopped, sighing blissfully, "very impressive." Desi smiled as she locked the silo, "So what?" she asked, hugging to him. Joker rolled his eyes, "So where is seven?" Desi lit up as she broke from him and went for the driver's seat. "I'm so glad you asked." she said, hopping in. Joker followed and she peeled out, speeding off toward the center of town.
Lily woke suddenly, looking around the living room. She moaned softly as she stood and wrapped her shawl around her, looking around for anyone. Bruce was in the batcave, going over info with Dick. They both looked up as they heard the door click and saw Lily walk slowly down the steps. Bruce removed his reading glasses as he looked up. "Did Matilda get the airport all right?" she asked. Dick nodded, "Yeah, she's on her way. She wanted me to thank you for the lovely day." Lily nodded, "I'm sorry I nodded off, that was rude of me." Both Dick and Bruce waved dismissively, almost in unison. "We're just going over some information." Bruce offered, "Are you feeling all right? I was thinking we might go for a drive later."
Lily's eyes lingered past Bruce, settling on the screen behind him. Bruce read her reaction and looked to the screen. GNN was displaying footage of both the Joker and Desdemona, and reporting the news of the ferryboat explosion which killed hundreds. "I've got to go." dick said, walking quickly to the vault. Instinctively, Bruce jumped up, following him before he stopped and looked at Lily. Lily stared lovingly at him, "Go." she instructed, "They need Batman." Bruce smiled gratefully and took off to suit up. Lily walked to the bottom step, sitting on it and taking a calming breath.
Moments later, he walked through suited up and ready to leave. He stopped, pulling Lily to her feet. "Thank you." he said simply. Lily touched his face tenderly, "Just come back to me." she said confidently. Batman's expression softened but remained serious. "I swear to God..." he replied, "I'll be right back." He kissed her roughly, breaking from her breathless. "Be safe." she whispered as he turned and went for the batmobile. They both climbed in and sped off as Lily watched.
Idlewild, Part One Two Three Four Five Six Seven Eight Nine Ten