Joker tended not to think much when physically involved in what Harley laughingly thought of as romance. Oh, toward the beginning of such encounters he might put on a good show, especially if it seemed necessary to help keep her in line. Bringing her to her knees was a delicate thing: knowing when he needed to give her a certain look, a harsh word, a more violent approach, or pretending for a moment that she was the center of his world. And they tried to tell her he didn’t put any work into their relationship. He put gobs! …When he felt like it…and to keep it on his terms, but still…
He hated to admit that this wasn’t one of those times. She had approached him in a more casual way than her usual fare of throwing herself at him and somehow it had affected him more than if she had. He was fairly sure she knew what she was doing, but at the moment didn’t care. Sometimes the body wanted what the body wanted and even he couldn’t do anything about it.
The benefit of this was that he didn’t have to put on a show for her, which meant he could get it out of the way quickly and return to more important matters. His mind wandered to other things at first, as his mind was wont to, while she panted and heaved underneath him. He recalled that there were some chemicals he was running low on and a suit he thought the tailor should be finished with soon.
Her cries were getting louder, interrupting him, and he annoyingly thought she might be trying to get his attention. As if he weren’t already giving her enough of it! He put his hand around her throat tightly to silence it. Part of him knew she mewled her ridiculous noises because she’d assume he’d want it. Part of him even realized he did and would find it insulting if she neglected to, but he’d rather not dissect his thought process in something so…mundane.
Thankfully, he wouldn’t have to. He was entering that phase where all thoughts melted away into a white haze. His grip tightened further around her soft neck, pushing her further down into the threadbare throw pillow underneath her head. He threw her ankles over his shoulders, quickening his pace until that haze slowly vanished and he became aware of his surroundings once again.
“You should know better by now than to interrupt Daddy when he’s busy,” he panted, stretched across the couch in an attempt to cool down, his head hanging off the arm of the sofa. No reply came from her form, splayed at the opposite end.
“Harl?” he repeated, looking up curiously, before sighing deeply at her still frame. “Passed out again, have we?” he inquired casually of her, despite the fact that she couldn’t carry on a proper conversation. “Don’t give me that look,” he chided, lifting his body just enough to hike up his pants around his waist once more. “You only have yourself to blame. Besides, by now you’d think your body would have a higher tolerance for this sort of thing.” He smacked her damp right thigh sharply, as though completing his point, but no movement accompanied the gesture.
It was then he decided that something was more amiss than usual. Her stillness was beyond absolute. He was pretty sure there should be some movement associated with breathing at the very least. Just how long had he had a firm hold on her throat?
“HARL?” he demanded louder this time while pulling her up smartly by the arm, already quite certain he’d receive no answer. He released her and she quietly slumped back into place, head nestled by the throw pillow.
“Huh-“ he grunted to himself absently, sitting next to her. “Guess I got a little carried away, kiddo,” he giggled and turned expectantly to hear her laugh chime back before realizing that, while he’d been associated with a mountain of smiling corpses, he’d never met one that could laugh.
He drummed his fingers absently on his knees for a split-second, before his thoughtful expression screwed itself into a grimace. “Shit,” he breathed, jumping over the back of the couch and dashing back into a corner of the deserted warehouse that they had designated as his office.
He headed straight for a worn, wooden table that he had laden with chemicals and scribbled paper, only to find that the item he was looking for wasn’t there. Confused, he looked around the room to see it had recently been straightened.
“This was organized chaos!” he growled angrily toward the person he knew was responsible, even though she couldn’t hear. His irritation echoed slightly off the walls of the mostly vacant, open space.
“I know why you’re doing this!” he continued his one-sided conversation, frantically looking around the room and finding an equally worn cupboard, minus one door. Inside was stored a collection of chemicals and medicinals he liked to play with. A quick survey showed that they were arranged alphabetically and his hand headed straight for the “A”s, picking up a vial.
“This would be just the way you’d want to go, wouldn’t it! Bet you had it planned all along!” he snarled, swiftly pulling a syringe out of a now-deceased stray cat he had been experimenting on.
“You almost got me. Sometimes I don’t give you enough credit,” he admitted, stabbing the syringe into the vial as he raced back to Harley’s side.
Joker sneered down at her, conflicted about what he was doing, but given the limited amount of time to consider the situation, saw that he had little choice in the matter. “If you think you’re getting away from me this easily, think again,” he hissed as he plunged the syringe with a firm stab through her chest plate into her heart.
Harley jumped up with such vigor that he was pushed backward. She was on her feet instantaneously, briefly screaming and sprinting aimlessly until she ran into a nearby wall. She abruptly put the wall to her back and slowly slid down into a sitting position on the cold cement floor. She wore a bewildered expression, her eyes darting back and forth, accompanied by rapid, shallow breaths.
Joker decided the best (and funniest) thing he could do was simply sit on that very same couch where the deed had taken place and look as innocent as possible. Not the easiest task when he found her reaction most humorous, particularly when she had run into the wall.
Harley’s breathing eventually started to slow and her eyes focused on him. “What-what happened?” she asked forcibly through her near hyperventilation.
“Happened?” Joker repeated with a clueless expression, in keeping with his innocent act. “Why, whatever do you mean?”
Harley didn’t seem to be sure how to answer that, nor much of anything other than she was suddenly on the floor, her heart was racing, and there was a sharp pain in her chest. “I-I think I might be having a heart attack,” she admitted breathlessly.
As anyone would do when under the impression they were suffering from some sort of affliction, she looked at the source of the problem and gasped. “GET IT OUT! GET IT OUT! GET IT OUT!” she demanded on impulse in a panicky fashion, upon finding a large syringe protruding from her chest.
Joker sighed with the realization that she wasn’t appreciating his act and, more so, that she wasn’t going to stop screaming ‘get it out’ until he did exactly that. He rose to his feet and began to walk toward her, when she suddenly changed her tune.
“Don’t touch it!” she pleaded, scooting away as best she could, whilst not disturbing the foreign object sticking out of her body. “Don’t! Don’t! Don’t!”
He narrowed his eyes and he stalked toward her anyway. She was flat on her back now, as that seemed the safest thing to do in terms of the needle, and scooting across the floor, pushing away from him meagerly with her bare feet. She was clearly trying to move as little as possible to avoid jarring it, so it didn’t take much effort for him to reach her.
He grabbed her by the ankle and pulled her toward him. She let out a little squeak of fright as he did so, as though screaming louder might somehow cause the object to harm her further.
“It’s got to come out, Harley,” he explained, crouched above her and putting on what he thought was a good impression of a soothing voice.
She whimpered in reply. “Wait!” she implored as he reached for the syringe.
He looked up at the high, arched ceiling imploringly and retracted his hand. “What?” he sighed with as much calm as he could muster.
“On three?” she begged. “My count?”
“Sure,” he agreed pleasantly and he grasped hold of the syringe, making her cringe against the floor.
“One,” she began apprehensively.
Tears were streaming from her eyes, down the side of her face, to the floor below, and he was starting to wish he had filmed this little escapade, realizing that it was one of those moments he would look back on and laugh.
“Two,” she sniffed, her body tensing up even further.
“Three!” he finished for her without warning and suddenly jerked the syringe up so quickly that she didn’t even have the wherewithal to scream until after the fact.
“There now. That wasn’t so bad, was it?” he consoled, the ordeal over and done with.
“What the hell did you put into me?!” she demanded, now that she was sure all her bodily functions were in working order.
“Does it matter?” he answered simply, retrieving an orange, crumpled silk shirt from the floor, along with a pile of her clothing, which he tossed at her. He began fastening the buttons of his own shirt as he turned away from Harley and headed back to work on what she had previously interrupted him from.
She followed him angrily while aggressively redressing; her features tightened around her face. “Of course it matters! How would you-,” her admonishments were interrupted by her foot kicking something that made a gentle clinking sound across the cement floor and Joker surreptitiously turned his gaze to the source of the noise. After sliding an arm into the sleeve of her t-shirt, she picked up the empty vial that had made the sound and read the label: Adrenaline (Epinephrine).
Her brief, confused expression transformed into one of understanding and awe. “YOU-,” she exclaimed excitedly and without thinking, before quickly closing her mouth again.
“Don’t, Harley,” he demanded darkly, one arm extended, his finger pointing directly at her. “Don’t even start.”
“I was just going to say,” Harley began with deliberate normality, “That I got a call today and your new suit is ready.” She walked over to a wastebasket and threw away the offending vial with indifference. “I’ll pick it up for you tomorrow, if you’d like.”
“Yes,” he agreed thoughtfully. There was something he should be doing right now. Something to make this moment end. Many ideas flashed across his mind’s eye quickly, most of them involving something along the lines of pouring acid down her throat or ripping out her tongue. But he couldn’t help shaking the feeling that anything he’d do would make having revived her all the more pointless, thus making him feel even more awkward than he already did. If he acted as though he had to counter the action, it showed that it wasn’t necessary in the first place and he did feel his reasoning perfectly justified at the time…
“-To sleep if I’m heading for the tailors tomorrow. They don’t keep the same hours we do, y’know.”
After he realized she’d been talking to him, he noted how casual she sounded. For the second time that night, it occurred to him that she probably knew what she was doing and that, in this instance, it might be best to just go along with it. Particularly since he clearly didn’t know what else he should be doing.
“Unless you need me for something,” she finished helpfully.
“No,” he matched her casualness despite the fact that this was potentially the most uncomfortable situation he’d ever found himself in. “You toddle off to bed.”
“’Kay,” she chirped back and he watched her skip away.
Yes, it was a delicate thing, keeping his Harley in check. And he was worried he had just made it even more so. He mused quietly to himself that it might be time for him to throw her to the Bat again. After all, she had said to him many times before that sometimes separations were healthy for relationships.
Disclaimer: DC owns all these characters and WB owns DC and Time Warner owns WB and I’m pretty sure the rest of the world.
Disclaimer: DC owns all these characters and WB owns DC and Time Warner owns WB and I’m pretty sure the rest of the world.
Author's Chapter Notes:
This is, without a doubt, the most ‘adult’ fic I’ve ever written, though I’ve tried to handle it tastefully. So if you’re into that kind of thing, hooray for you. If not, I will try to feel shame on your behalf.
Chapter End Notes:
I must point out that I didn’t write this without giving any regard to reality. Several health professionals were questioned on this and indicated it could work.