Title: Rainbow’s Freedom (Rainbow Prisms Arc) (1/42)
Pairings/Characters: (this chapter): Clark/Bruce, Dick
Series Notes: In the 23rd century, Earth is a technologically-advanced society that practices the ancient institution of slavery. Clark finally learns about his identity and heritage. Will that knowledge tear him and Bruce apart? Meanwhile, Rebellion and Abolition twist and turn in the pageantry of events.
The entire series can be found here.
Genres: AU, Drama, Slavefic
Rating: (this chapter): G
Summary: Bruce and Dick try and adjust to learning about Clark’s true heritage.
Date Of Completion (First Draft): September 12, 2010
Date Of Posting: August 23, 2011
Disclaimer: I don’t own ‘em, DC does, more’s the pity.
Word Count: 909
Feedback welcome and appreciated.
Author’s Note: The magnificent story cover is by the wonderfully-talented ctbn60. Thanks so much, luv! :)
Come and gone,
But what of
The morning after?
The green glow from the lead box cast a sickly pall over Bruce’s face. Dick’s hand slid from his shoulder to clutch his arm.
“It’ll be all right, Bruce.”
Tears shimmered in Bruce’s eyes. “I know. I should be happy, but…”
“I know.” Dick’s arm went around Bruce’s shoulders. “It’s all changed now.” A touch of sadness tinged the boy’s voice.
Bruce closed his eyes, tears squeezing out as he could see light patterns flickering behind his closed lids. He took a ragged breath.
He was aware of Dick beside him as he tried to calm his breathing. His boy was a pillar of strength. It did not surprise him that Dick seemed to know exactly what was going on. Somehow, Dick always knew.
Bruce watched images flicker like some bizarre old movie. Not a holo, a movie, with grainy film and jittery sprockets.
Images of Clark swept by, from the auction block to his arrival at the Manor to all the times, good and bad, they had shared, including the blossoming of love and passion.
Is all that over now?
Bruce opened his eyes, abruptly shutting the box. He wiped his eyes with a gloved hand.
Dick was looking at him with sympathy shining from his blue eyes. “It’ll be all right, Bruce.”
Bruce managed a small smile. He hugged Dick fiercely, and when they parted, he rose and put the lead box back in the vault. Closing the steel door, he said, “I’ll shower and change.”
“I’ll wait for you.”
He came out of the shower room ten minutes later, dressed in robe and slippers. He silently put an arm around Dick’s shoulders, and the two of them climbed the stone steps together.
Up in the library, the storm could be seen raging over the ocean, lightning flashing over the roiling waves. Dick said, “Lex sent an envelope by special courier. It’s in the study.” He bit his lips. “It’s about Kryptonians.”
Bruce looked at his young partner, then nodded. “Don’t say anything to Clark.” He shook his head as Dick began to object. “I don’t want to wake him up in the middle of the night and hit him with all this.” Bruce squeezed Dick’s shoulders. “Tomorrow morning.” Dick nodded. “Go on up to bed.”
Bruce gave Dick a final hug, watching the boy trudge away, lacking his usual verve.
He rubbed his hand over his face and went to the study, easily finding the envelope. He took out the contents and scanned the top page.
Lex and Jamie had figured things out on their end and sent their speculations and proof, chilling his bones.
All this time…Clark had a memory. It was just brutally suppressed by the drugs the smugglers gave him.
Just as suppressed as his powers.
His mind raced with possibilities: Clark would remember his past; perhaps a family was out there waiting for him, and he would be so happy!
I’m happy for you, Clark. I know it’s upset you not to remember. You’ll have memories again, belong somewhere.
Bruce smiled. Clark would be happy. It could not have been easy on him to have no past. He had made new memories here, with a new family, but Bruce understood roots and legacies. He was surrounded by both every day here at the Manor.
He rubbed his eyes and put the envelope back on his desk. He was too tired to read everything.
Bruce shuffled into the library, staring up at the painting of his parents and younger self. Crossing his arms, he whispered, “Can I handle the changes?”
With a sigh, Bruce left the library and trudged upstairs.
Dick could hear Bruce’s footsteps as he came up the grand staircase and down the hall.
He knew why Bruce was not completely happy at this turn of events.
Practically speaking, he had yet another slave under a Hunt Decree, putting his family and fortune at risk. Guiltily, Dick burrowed deeper under the covers.
What if Clark had to go away? Wouldn’t he want to help his people avoid extermination? That would mean leaving him, Alfred, and Bruce.
Dick closed his eyes. Guilt welled up in him again, because Clark would not be sick anymore, and that was the most important thing, right? Who cared if he no longer wore a slave collar and bracelets anymore?
Dick wiped his eyes as he rolled over onto his side, desperate for sleep.
Bruce slipped into his bedroom, as silent as the Bat. The storm was beginning to move out over the ocean, the moon coming out from behind a cloud and sparkling on the sea. Ordinarily this would be a soothing scene, but there was too much turmoil in Bruce’s heart.
He looked over at the sleeping man in his bed. The moonlight accentuated glorious cheekbones and lush lips, long lashes sweeping starlit skin. Silky, blue-black hair was endearingly tousled, a stray curl tumbling over his forehead.
Bruce’s heart ached. Torn by guilt and joy, he gazed down at Clark.
Sleep peacefully, my love. Tomorrow your world will be a very different place.
Bruce slipped into bed, curling around Clark as he tugged the covers up on this chilly autumn evening. Clark sighed, snuggling back toward Bruce in his sleep.
Bruce tightened his grip as he tried to fall asleep.