Pairings/Characters: (this chapter): Alfred, Clark/Bruce, Dick, Jim Gordon
Series Notes: In the 23rd century, Earth is a technologically-advanced society that practices the ancient institution of slavery. As Bruce and Clark continue to juggle being lovers as well as Master and slave, Bruce continues his Abolitionist work, and a shocking Family Secret is revealed. Meanwhile, the Queen Family welcomes a new member, and Steve and Hal meet their Destinies, although neither one realizes it yet. The entire series can be found here.
Genres: Drama, AU
Rating: (this chapter): PG-13
Summary: The fall-out continues.
Date Of Completion (First Draft): May 12, 2008
Date Of Posting: March 13, 2009
Disclaimer: I don’t own ‘em, DC does, more’s the pity.
Word Count: 1037
Feedback welcome and appreciated.
What we must.
"Domestic War Zone"
Alfred was stunned to find Clark in the guest room the next morning. Bruce was coming out of his room already dressed with a troubled expression on his face.
“Clark and I will be sleeping separately for awhile, Alfred.”
“Oh, sir, not again.”
Bruce said brusquely, “It was his choice.”
Alfred was truly stunned now. Clark’s choice? What in the name of the Queen…?
“I’ll be having breakfast in the city.”
Alfred watched Bruce go down the staircase.
Clark was just as tight-lipped as Bruce, eating very little at breakfast. After he left to go back upstairs to dress, Dick looked at Alfred.
“Alfred, what’s going on?”
“A disagreement, I fear.”
“Yeah, but over what?”
Alfred glanced at Dick. He stood up to clear the table. “Neither will say. How are you this morning?”
“I’m fine.” Dick rubbed his throat, a thin red line standing out against his skin. “I’ll be ready to go back out tonight.”
“Master Bruce doesn’t object?”
“No, otherwise he would have already told me. Though he shouldn’t object. We have close calls. Can’t let that stop us.”
Alfred’s back was to Dick as he filled the dishwasher. He smiled. The boy had spunk.
“After your lesson, come join me in the garden.”
Dick brought over his plate and glass and put them in the dishwasher, then hurried to get dressed.
Alfred sighed. Dick almost dying, and now this? The fight had to have been about that.
So Bruce had allowed him to leave his bed?
That would never have happened before they had acknowledged their love for each other, but he was still certain that Master Bruce had not been happy with such disobedience, and that was bound to cause considerable strain on their relationship.
It was the first real test of whether they could survive as Master and slave and Beloveds as well.
Dick was waiting for Clark when his teacher arrived in the library. Once Clark sat down, he asked, “Is everything all right?”
“As long as you are.” Clark smiled.
“I’m fine, Clark. But you and Bruce…?”
“…are not seeing eye-to-eye.”
“On what?” Clark bit his lip. “It’s about me, isn’t it?”
Clark looked down at his book. “You were nearly killed.”
Dick felt affection sweep through him. “I’m fine, Clark.”
“Good. I want you to stay that way.” Clark opened his book. “Page 262, please.”
Dick obeyed, upset over the fight but deciding to talk to Bruce when he came home. Clark was being very stubborn.
Bruce came home in time for patrol, Dick noticing a pale Clark going to the guest room.
Down in the Batcave, Bruce was more Bat, grimly pulling on his gauntlets without a word.
The entire ride to Gotham was silent, Robin deciding to stay quiet for now.
Batman parked the Batmobile on the outskirts of the city and they went in.
Robin was accustomed to periods of silence working with the Bat. He welcomed it as they patrolled in concert, Robin feeling good about getting back into the swing of things.
He needed that.
The first take-down of the night was fairly simple: a gang of teenagers harassing a gay couple, spouting epithets that made Robin burn with anger.
Were these people stuck in the 21st century? What vile creatures were they?
Stupid ones, at any rate.
Batman nodded and Robin swooped down in their midst, startling them as he punched and kicked. Curses were thrown his way but he merely smiled.
The old trope that banning handguns would result in only criminals possessing them was not completely true. Criminals could get guns if they were willing to pay exorbitant sums. Petty crooks could not afford anything but knives, and they flashed those weapons now.
Robin easily dodged the knives, knocking out two of the gang while the others began to converge.
“The Bat!” yelled a terrified voice.
The rustle of silken batwings set the rest of the gang running. Robin trussed up the two unconscious thugs.
“Let’s make a delivery,” Batman rasped. He turned to the terrified couple. “You all right?”
“Y…Yes, Batman.” The speaker was holding hands tightly with his partner. “Thanks to you and Robin.”
“You’re welcome,” Robin chirped with a smile.
The men smiled back.
Batman lifted one thug, Robin the lighter one, and they flew off, headed for Police Headquarters.
Jim Gordon wandered over to his office window to get some fresh air. Thank the heavens air pollution was long a thing of the past. How had people been able to live, breathing in carcinogens every second?
Downtown Gotham was a familiar sight, old-fashioned buildings mixed with the new, Wayne Tower at the center of it all.
Jim liked the sight. Gotham appealed to him with its mix of old and new. Crime was part of the fabric, but that was true of every major Earth city. Gotham used to be a sinkhole of crime and corruption, one of the worst in America, but it was still no shining city on a hill.
Guess that’s a good thing, or I’d be out of a job, Jim chuckled.
The Govs would stick their noses in, their surveillance and other methods of keeping tabs including the populace instead of just criminals an irritant, but they essentially left the policing to his department.
A blur of color caught his eye, and he smiled as he saw the small but energetic figure swoop down and deposit a bound teenager none-too-gently on the sidewalk, a darker, larger figure doing the same with his heavier burden.
Hmm, another two who’d be jobless if there was no crime.
His officers hurried out and took custody of the thugs, receiving an explanation from the Dynamic Duo.
Glad to see Robin’s okay.
Jim watched the two costumed crimefighters fly away on their lines, all right with the world.
Even if all was not right at Wayne Manor.