Title: Rainbow’s Freedom (Justice Arc) (57/61)
Pairings/Characters: (this chapter): Hal/Steve/Diana (Hal & Steve do not appear in this chapter), Aphrodite, Athena, Clark/Bruce, Dick/Roy (Roy does not appear in this chapter)
Series Notes: In the 23rd century, Earth is a technologically-advanced society that practices the ancient institution of slavery. Clark begins training under the Bat and secrets are uncovered as the Abolitionist Movement makes rapid progress with old and new methods. Can Freedom outrace rumors of War as the Galactic Empire rushes headlong to a new future?
The entire series can be found here.
Genres: AU, Drama, Slavefic
Rating: (this chapter): PG-13
Summary: Important news is imparted on a breezy hill overlooking Boston Harbor and in a gazebo at Wayne Manor on a glorious autumn day.
Date Of Completion (First Draft): November 20, 2011
Date Of Posting: February 26, 2013
Disclaimer: I don’t own ‘em, DC does, more’s the pity.
Word Count: 983
Feedback welcome and appreciated.
Author’s Note: The magnificent story cover is by the wonderfully-talented ctbn60. Thanks so much, luv! :)
We see leaves
Of scarlet and gold,
And skies of blue.
It is good
To get fine news
On a golden day.
"Life’s Little Moments"
Wonder Woman shivered as she ascended the hill overlooking the harbor. The golden leaves swirled about, almost melancholy as Gaia’s slumber approached. She always announced it with a blaze of glory.
“Show-off,” Wonder Woman muttered with a smile. The Gods of Olympus shared the sentiment but approved of the show.
She reached the top of the hill and waited, watching the boats traverse Boston Harbor. The day was one of those quintessential New England splendor, the sky and water brilliant blue and framed by riotous gold, scarlet and orange. She had been amazed when she had first seen this season and still felt that way every year.
She had been compelled to come here by an undefinable something but was not afraid. She sensed benevolence.
“You are correct, Daughter of Hippolyta.”
Wonder Woman jumped slightly, then went to her knees. “My Lady,” she murmured.
A luminescence announced the presence of Aphrodite. A second voice said, “Rise, child.”
Wonder Woman obeyed, smiling as she saw the images of Aphrodite and Athena, magnificent in their divine glory.
“How may I serve you, my Ladies?”
Athena’s golden helmet reflected the sun. She gripped a spear as she answered, “It is time to be reunited with your Sisters.”
Wonder Woman’s heart leapt. “When, my Goddess?”
“Soon. When we deem the time to be right, Paradise Island well return to this realm of existence.”
“How shall I know?”
Aphrodite answered, “Your heart will tell you, Princess.” Her golden tiara sparkled.
“They will return, refreshed and ready,” Athena said. “Their history in Man’s World will be restored, with the exception of the knowledge of your enslavement since 1863. The Amazons will be figures of power and mystery as they should be and ready to defend the cause of Freedom.”
Wonder Woman hesitated. “That young solder Steve told me about who knows the truth…what shall become of him?”
“The Mists of Nepenthe missed him as he lay deep in coma escaping Paradise Island,” Aphrodite said. “He is destined to be a touchstone of truth. He will tell his story but not be believed.”
“There must always be a reminder of our past to anchor us to reality.”
Wonder Woman nodded. “The return of my mother and sisters…is a Great Cataclysm coming?”
“I am sorry, Diana, I cannot say. But know this: your alliances with other heroes will be of great benefit in the future.”
Wonder Woman was heartened by this pronouncement. Sometimes the Goddesses worked in mysterious ways but held out hope.
“When will my mother and sisters return?”
Aphrodite smiled. “Soon, faithful Daughter of Hippolyta.”
Wonder Woman bowed her head. “I await that happy day.”
“Go in peace, Wonder Woman,” said the Goddesses.
When Wonder Woman looked up, they were gone.
Clark shuffled through the leaves until he reached the gazebo. Set at the edge of the woods, it overlooked the ocean. He stepped up into the gazebo and watched the sunlight sparkle on the sea. A slight breeze blew, sending the windchimes inside the gazebo tinkling merrily. The sound soothed him as he watched a yacht sail by.
Sitting down on the bench that ringed the gazebo, he allowed his senses to drink in the surroundings. He smelled the salt air and the rich earth, saw the trees’ wonderful autumn colors, tasted the rich piece of chocolate in his mouth and felt the smooth wood of the bench. As another breeze blew he relished the coolness on his skin and listened to the windchimes. From across the water he could hear voices on the yacht while a plane droned high in the sky, a plume of white smoke trailing behind it as it climbed higher and higher.
“Beautiful day, isn’t it?”
Clark smiled as Bruce joined him in the gazebo. “It is. I was just thinking how peaceful it was.”
“The Manor does herself proud on days like this.”
Clark smiled at Bruce’s personification of the Manor, but agreed with it. Much like the house on the farm, it had a personality of its own.
Bruce sat next to Clark, enjoying the view of the sea. “You know, I never get tired of looking at it,” he mused.
“It’s eternal,” Clark said with a little smile.
Bruce nodded, rubbing Clark’s knee. Contentment reigned in the gazebo until Clark slid off the bench and onto his knees, bowing his head and crossing his wrists behind his back as he parted his legs.
Bruce blinked. “Clark?” He gently put a hand on his lover’s chin and lifted his head. “What are you doing?”
“Do you know how special you are?” At Bruce’s deprecating laugh, Clark insisted, “When you bought me at the auction I was confused and afraid. The only memories I had were the horrors from the slavers’ camp. I was terrified that I would be bought by a sadistic Master but instead I got you.” Clark nuzzled Bruce’s hand. “Do you know how much it meant to me that you were kind and protective?”
Bruce swallowed. “Clark, I…”
“When I was vulnerable, that meant the world to me. Now that I have my powers, it still means everything to me. Having someone able to protect me even now…I feel safe and happy.”
Bruce blinked back tears. He ran his fingers through Clark’s hair and Clark kissed the palm of his hand. Clark rested his head on Bruce’s lap as his Master continued caressing his hair. The sound of the ocean washed over them like the waves upon the shore.
The silence was broken by Dick’s excited voice. “Bruce! Clark! Great news!”
“What is it?” Bruce asked as Dick raced into the gazebo.
“The Hunt Decree has been lifted from the Kryptonians!”