Pairings/Characters: (this chapter): Clark/Bruce, Jim Gordon, Edmund Caldwell, Harrison 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): R
Warnings: Sexual violence
Summary: Bruce’s deepest fears consume him during one terrible night.
Date Of Completion (First Draft): July 12, 2007
Date Of Posting: November 15, 2007
Disclaimer: I don’t own ‘em, DC does, more’s the pity.
Word Count: 1559
Feedback welcome and appreciated.
And the face
Of the moon.
Like a cape,
“The Death Of Freedom”
WINGS ACROSS THE MOON
The Batman swooped down to the window in the brooding old building. He perched on the ledge, black cape fluttering gently out behind him. He raised the sash of the window, sliding in to blend with the shadows.
A single lamp burned on the oak desk, papers neatly arranged on the blotter. A gold-framed triptych faced away from him, but Batman knew that it contained three pictures: one of Jim Gordon, his deceased wife, and their daughter Barbara; one of him and Barbara a few years ago, and one of the pretty little girl today.
The Commissioner entered the office, his tread light on the worn floors. The building had been built in 1901, and the high ceilings kept the place from being too claustrophobic. The yellow-and-brown tiles were worn smooth from centuries of footsteps.
The paneling was dark wood, most of it the original like the floor tiles. Apparently the GCPD’s famed centuries of corruption had never carried over to lavish surroundings.
Batman made a slight noise. He had no wish to cause Jim Gordon a heart attack.
Jim looked over at the window. “Hello, Batman.”
“Commissioner.” Batman melted out of the shadows. “Do you have any leads on the Joker?”
“No, but I’ve got my snitches working, as you do.” Jim smiled slightly. “He’s gone to ground but could pop up at any time.” He ran a hand through his silver hair. “At least the Penguin and the Riddler have been quiet, and since you thwarted Catwoman at the Museum on Halloween, no signs of her, either.”
The phone rang. “Excuse me.” Jim picked up the handset. “Gordon here.” He listened, surprise, then resignation showing on his face and he said, “All right, log it in.” He hung up the handset and took off his glasses, rubbing the bridge of his nose. “Sorry ‘bout that. Gotham General just notified me that the Caldwell slave died.”
“An unfortunate accident?” Batman’s gloves were clenched under his cape.
“Hardly.” Jim snorted. “The Caldwell scion, Harrison, got a little too rough with his pleasure slave, which doesn’t surprise me. Most of their slaves wind up with broken bones and other injuries, especially the pleasure slaves that Old Man Caldwell and his eldest son use up on a regular basis.” Jim sighed as he replaced his glasses. “Legally, the death of a slave caused by his Master must be recorded but of course there can be no investigation, not even for outright murder.” His tone was bitter.
“Perhaps a law can be passed?”
Jim smiled wearily. “I ‘m no abolitionist, but I’d welcome more restrictions on Masters. As it is now, they can torture these poor souls and if they die, the attitude is, so what? Some of them are better off dead after the mutilation some of them suffer.”
“Did you attend the National Abolitionist Society convention?”
Jim smiled ruefully. “No, the Police Commissioner can’t be seen at such a controversial event.” He crossed his arms. “Thanks for coming by, Batman. The Joker’s too elusive for either of us to tackle alone. So far his crime spree and his Joker venom are essentially harmless, as his victims recover within 24 hours, but he’ll turn to murder if left to roam free.”
Batman nodded. “I’ll keep in touch.”
He exited through the window, determined to protect his city.
& & & & & &
The screams shot up loud and clear through the night air. He found the luridly-grinning victim and his sobbing wife on the sidewalk in front of a popular Italian restaurant.
& & & & & &
The second victim was found in the parking lot of a seedy liquor store.
& & & & & &
The third victim was in Gotham Park, his little dog yipping frantically at the painfully-grinning face.
& & & & & &
Batman worked relentlessly but remained a frustrating step behind. He finally gave up for the night, returning to the Batcave at 3:36 A.M. Exhausted and frustrated, he showered and went upstairs.
Clark didn’t awaken as Bruce slid into bed, and the bone-tired man fell asleep in minutes.
& & & & & &
“Master, help me!”
The desperation in Clark’s voice cut through Bruce. He ran down a long, empty road, past woods and iron gates, the sky a slate-gray.
At the end of the road, a dark forest behind him, a naked Clark was on his knees, scratches and bruises on his chest and arms, hand-shaped bruises on his thighs, blood running down his legs.
Hands reached out from the darkness, grasping at Clark, slipping around his chest and waist, brutally twisting his nipples. A bearded face emerged, lips eagerly feasting on the back of Clark’s neck. Other figures emerged, dressed as Rigellian slavers, leering grins attaching themselves to naked skin.
Clark’s hair was disheveled, a single curl dangling over his brow. His eyes were desperate behind his tinted glasses, his arms outstretched in entreaty. Rainbow colors sparkled around his neck and wrists as the only brightness in the darkness. The medallion that Bruce had given him on Halloween glinted at his throat just beneath his collar.
Horrified, Bruce tried to run to Clark but his feet were rooted to the ground. A crowd of gray, faceless onlookers suddenly appeared in a semi-circle around Bruce. An enthusiastic slaver’s “Mmm” as he sucked on the back of Clark’s neck turned Bruce’s stomach.
“Release my slave! The Prince of Gotham commands it!” he thundered.
The onlookers and slavers burst out into mocking laughter. One of the onlookers sneered, “No one will obey you, Wayne. Your days of imperious command are over, you who fell in love with a slave!”
“Master…” Clark pleaded.
Suddenly one of the onlookers stepped out from the crowd, gray morphing into purple-and-green as a leering grin chilled Bruce’s blood.
“So, Brucie Wayne, not so tough now, eh, m’lord?” The Joker’s maniacal laughter rang out, his eyes glittering as he saw Clark. A gloved hand cupped Clark’s chin, the Joker’s eyes narrowing.
Bruce strained to move, fear washing over him. Clark was so vulnerable; he couldn’t protect him; if the Joker touched him…
The Joker morphed again, and this time Bruce was able to move his legs. Hands grabbed before he got far and he cursed, trying to free himself.
Edmund Caldwell’s pale gray eyes glittered. His thumb gently rubbed Clark’s chin, then grabbed his jaw, jerking his head up painfully. Fear shone in Clark’s eyes.
“Mmm, delicious Prize.” His manicured hand ran down Clark’s throat and chest, then stroked his hip. His cane forced Clark’s legs apart. “Always open and ready, as a whore should be.” Edmund turned to look at Bruce, his smile wide. “No need of any wardrobe for this one.” He turned back, his cane tracing Clark’s lips. “That mouth is going to give so much pleasure.”
Another figure came out of the shadows.
“We’re ready, Dad.”
Edmund smiled. “Excellent, Harrison.”
The slavers began dragging Clark into the yawning darkness.
“Stop it!” yelled Bruce as he struggled wildly.
“Master!” Clark screamed as he struggled, too, laughter from the onlookers, slavers, and Caldwells nearly drowning him out.
“No! Stop it! He’s my slave! You can’t touch him!”
“Slave-lover!” spat Edmund. He yanked on Clark’s medallion with his cane and the chain broke, the jewelry falling to the ground.
Clark’s lower body was disappearing into the blackness, his fingers clawing at the dirt. “Master!” he sobbed, blood trailing as he was dragged inexorably away.
Bruce was crazed with fear, trying to break free. He screamed his throat raw as the laughter grew.
Just before Clark disappeared into the darkness, his blue eyes glittered with tears. He said softly, “Master,” as if in farewell, then the darkness swallowed him up.
The moon broke through the clouds, silvering the gray figures around him. Edmund smiled and went into the darkness, cane twirling.
“Clark, hold on! I’ll save you!”
Slave-lover, slave-lover, slave-lover…
The whispers grew, mocking and contemptuous. Bruce cursed and railed, demanding that he be let go.
The screams began, freezing Bruce in his tracks.
Bruce’s screams mingled with Clark’s, two throats raw with agony, pain searing through Bruce’s heart as the hands let him go and he fell to his knees, still unable to move, unable to block out the screams and mocking laughter echoing from the depths of darkness, the starred medallion glinting in dirt and blood.
The moon’s light was shadowed as a large, winged shape crossed the face of the moon, then began to tremble, falling away as the agonized screams broke the moon in two…
& & & & & &
Bruce shot up, a silent scream caught in his throat. He tried to catch his breath, clutching his chest.
He looked down at Clark sleeping next to him, the nightmare still wild in his heart. Clark frowned as he moved restlessly in his sleep as if sensing Bruce’s agony. Bruce’s hand reached out to touch Clark’s face, tears blurring his vision, but he drew his hand back and curled up, his back to Clark as he tried to calm his shaking limbs and racing heart.