Pairings/Characters: (this chapter): Clark/Bruce, Alfred, Edmund Caldwell
Series Notes: In the 23rd century, Earth is a technologically-advanced society that practices the ancient institution of slavery. The wealthy freeman Bruce Wayne acquires a highly-prized pleasure slave whom has fallen in love with him…but can the Prince of Gotham ever return that love? And will it all be moot as a weak abolitionist movement slowly gathers strength while the Galactic Empire remains in a perpetual state of Cold War? The entire series can be found here.
Categories: Drama, AU
Rating: (this chapter): PG-13
Summary: Bruce runs into Edmund Caldwell (needless to say, not a pleasant encounter!) while Clark does some research (and gets some help from Alfred).
Date Of Completion (First Draft): July 12, 2007
Date Of Posting: November 12, 2007
Disclaimer: I don’t own ‘em, DC does, more’s the pity.
Word Count: 1123 + 1543 (Total: 2666)
Feedback welcome and appreciated.
Emily Adams Cutler
“Yellow Roses And Other Poems”
Alfred quietly entered the study with feather duster in hand. Clark was seated at the desk, working at the computer. He was so intent that he didn’t notice Alfred.
The butler glanced at the screen, then stopped. Wha…?
“Doing some research, Clark?”
Clark nearly jumped out of the chair. “Alfred!” His hand went to his chest. “You scared the life out of me!”
“Goodness, we can’t have that.” He looked at the screen. “Do you think Master Bruce is up to this particular position?”
Clark blushed furiously. He tried to minimize the window but Alfred’s hand on his stopped him.
“Why are you looking at such sites, Clark?”
The blush was still crimson. “I…I …” He swallowed. “I think Master Bruce is losing interest, so I…”
“…thought you would research some exotic techniques?” At Clark’s embarrassed nod, Alfred released his hand. He gently pushed it aside and clicked the mouse. “Here’s the foremost Pleasure Slave site. There are helpful links from here.” Clark looked at him in astonishment and Alfred patted him on the shoulder. He walked to the bookcase and started dusting.
Clark stared for several seconds, then a slow smile spread across his face and he shook his head in wonder.
& & & & & &
You need to focus.
You’ve already let the Joker get the upper hand more than once. First because you wanted to get home to your pretty piece, and secondly because you let yourself get rundown and sloppy.
Bruce sighed. His Bat-voice was very strong lately.
He walked briskly down the road from Oakwood, his hands in his jacket pockets as the wind grew stronger. He liked this time of year, though by now most of the leaves were down, leaving the trees stark against a slate-gray sky. The earth smelled damp from a late-night rain. Even the kitchen garden was bare after Alfred and Clark had dug up the last remnants. The sea was growing grayer and more tempestuous, the days growing shorter.
Deep in thought, he nearly ran into Edmund Caldwell on the sidewalk.
“Hello, Bruce. Taking your daily constitutional?”
Bruce’s head snapped up, only a lifetime of training keeping him from scowling. He put on his social playboy’s face and said, “Hello, Edmund. Brisk weather today.”
“Very, but invigorating.” Edmund held his silver-headed cane loosely. “How’s Oliver and Lex these days?”
“They’re fine. Tip-top health.”
“Yes, I spoke to Lionel yesterday. He’s very proud of Lex’s latest business acquisition, a Rigellian company.”
“Yes, I read about that on the Global Business site.”
Bruce kept up the civil façade despite his rage at Edmund. He did not want Edmund Caldwell zeroing in on him. Lionel Luthor was one of the most feared and ruthless businessmen on the planet, and even he respected Edmund and tried to stay on his good side.
Edmund looked grandfatherly with his silver hair and cane, and yet was the most bloodthirsty business shark Bruce knew.
Not to mention a sadist.
“Oliver’s cousin Leila stopped by the other day. She left with one of my slaves, a little whelp.”
“Yes. The little thing was always breaking the china.” Edmund shook his head in sorrow.
No doubt she was so nervous and terrified of making mistakes in your Household.
“Well, looks like Leila will have to do some training.”
“Oh, I don’t think so. The slave is with Oliver now.” Edmund touched his cane, pale eyes casually looking at Bruce.
Bruce willed himself to appear relaxed. His father’s voice echoed in his head, ‘Don’t get fooled by Mr. Caldwell, son. He’s very pleasant and charming…but then pow! he’ll close on you like a bear trap.’
“I’m sure Dinah will take her in hand then.”
“Yes.” Edmund’s voice dripped disapproval. "She is the pseudo Lady of the House, after all.”
Bruce clamped on a genuine grin. Some religionists had no trouble with husbands and wives keeping pleasure slaves, but they had to be married first. He didn’t know if Dinah and Ollie would ever marry, but that was their business.
“Where’s your shadow?”
“Hmm?” His defensive shields immediately snapped up into place.
“That pretty piece of ass you bed.”
“Oh, he’s at home.”
“Waiting for his Master’s return?”
“He always does.”
Edmund’s eyes glinted. “Legs spread and waiting on silk sheets. Talented mouth, too, from the looks of him.”
“He’ll do.” Bruce disliked the crude description but carefully kept his tone light.
“How’s Andrew Carver?”
Startled, Bruce said, “Fine.”
“Really, Bruce, do you think it’s wise to be seen with him?”
“I wasn’t ‘seen’ with him; I merely dropped by his house.”
“Yes, Oakwood is in deplorable condition. A shame, really.”
Yes, especially since you led the charge to ruin him financially.
“The Starlight Foundation is a worthy cause. His family modeled it after the Jimmy Fund in Boston, and they’ve made great strides in treating children’s cancer.”
“Certainly commendable, Bruce, but do you have to visit the fool? Why not just send him a check?”
Bruce waved his hand airily. “Oh, it’s sort of a tradition by now.”
The glint was undeniably hard by now. “Those kind of traditions we can do without.”
“How did you know I visited Andrew?”
“Harrison was driving over and saw you leaving Oakwood.”
Damn, the whole family are like bloodhounds!
“How is Harrison?”
“My son is doing well at the company. By the way,” he stilled the cane and smiled, “Would you be interested in selling your whore? Harrison’s pleasure slave was damaged beyond repair and he can use a new one.”
A wave of protectiveness surged up so ferociously in Bruce that he nearly shook with the force of it.
I’d rather give him to Dax Mantell than you or your spawn, old man! At least Dax wouldn’t torture Clark.
Bruce smiled pleasantly as he folded his arms. “Sorry, Edmund, my Prize is not for sale.”
“Ah, well.” Edmund shrugged. “A pity, but if you change your mind, let me know.” As Edmund walked away, twirling his cane, he said jovially, “If he was mine, he’d never close his legs or wear a stitch of clothing ever again.”
Or know a moment’s peace.
Edmund turned back. “After all, any man who falls in love with such a creature is not worthy of respect, and his whore…well, he is far more vulnerable, don’t you agree?”
Edmund’s eyes glinted with some kind of evil, his smile pleasant and his step jaunty as he walked away for good this time.
Bruce watched the old man go, a chill running down his spine as his eyes narrowed.
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