Title: Rainbow’s Freedom (Justice Arc) (28/61)
Pairings/Characters: (this chapter): Roy/Johnny, Clark/Bruce, Dick
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): R
Warnings: Slave abuse, description of torture and rape.
Summary: Johnny tells Roy who was at the orgy.
Date Of Completion (First Draft): June 4, 2011
Date Of Posting: August 15, 2012
Disclaimer: I don’t own ‘em, DC does, more’s the pity.
Word Count: 1225
Feedback welcome and appreciated.
Author’s Note: The magnificent story cover is by the wonderfully-talented ctbn60. Thanks so much, luv! :)
Judge Oscar M’Butu
On Edmund Caldwell
22 – C.E.
"WE’VE GOT HIM!"
“Hey, how ya doin’?” Roy roused from his semi-slumber in the chair by Johnny’s bed at the sound of his lover’s voice.
Johnny blinked in a haze of medication.
Better than the pain, Roy thought.
“Am I…at Gotham General?”
“That’s right.” Roy brushed back Johnny’s unruly hair back from his forehead. “Everyone’s taking care of you: Dixie, Brackett, Joe Early.”
“I…was hurt again.” His hand suddenly flew to his eye. “My eye…!”
“…is fine.” Roy gently brushed the bandage under Johnny’s eye and that ran down his cheek. “You had a knife wound but it’s been lasered shut and should heal nicely, according to Brackett.”
Johnny took inventory of his injuries. “I…was hurt again.”
Resignation flooded Johnny’s face. “They’ll just patch me up and send me back.”
Roy grabbed his hand. “Not if I can help it.”
Johnny smiled slightly. “That’s very kind of you, Roy, but there’s nothing you can do.”
“Ah, but we have friends in high places.”
Johnny chuckled. “We do? Where?”
Johnny’s one good eye widened, the other swollen shut. “What are you talking about?”
“I called him and told him what Hawkins and the rest of those scum did to you.”
“He’s willing to help?”
Roy smiled. “You bet.” Hope flared in Johnny’s eye. “You’re going to be all right.”
Johnny grimaced. “This is the second time I’ve been hurt this badly, Roy.” Fear lurked in his gaze. “What if I can’t ever again…?”
Roy squeezed his hand. “We’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.”
“Okay.” Johnny sighed. He rested his head on the pillow. “Boy, I thought I was a goner.”
“I know.” Roy said sympathetically.
“Well, when Edmund Caldwell walked in…”
Roy’s blood ran cold. “What?!”
Johnny nodded. He shifted, trying to get comfortable with his arm cast and tightly-wrapped ribs. His legs were bandaged, too.
“He walked in and I thought I was dead meat for sure. I’ve seen excerpts of that tape on-line.” He shuddered.
Roy clutched his hand a little tighter. “Johnny, he isn’t supposed to have contact with any slaves other than his own. It’s a condition of his parole.”
Johnny’s hand went reflexively to his chest. Roy gritted his teeth. He knew now who had sadistically torn his lover’s nipples. “You weren’t just a victim of rough sex. You were tortured!”
Shame flooded Johnny’s face. He ducked his head. “Yes,” he whispered.
Roy put a hand on his chin and lifted his head. “It’s not your fault. You had no power against that sadist. But I have,” he concluded grimly.
Johnny grasped Roy’s hand. “Roy, you can’t go against Edmund Caldwell. He’ll destroy you!”
“He nearly destroyed you!” Roy’s eyes narrowed. “What did he do to you?”
Johnny bit his lip. “Roy…”
“He shoved a broken bottle up your ass, didn’t he? Dixie said that Joe Early had to take bits of glass out of you.”
Johnny nodded miserably. “It hurt, Roy. It hurt so bad.”
Roy gently drew Johnny into a hug, careful of his cast. He kissed his cheek. “I won’t let him get away with this. I promise you that.”
Johnny closed his good eye and allowed himself to feel safe in Roy’s arms. It was an illusion, of course, since he was still owned by the Government and they could do what they liked with him, but for this moment, he would allow himself the indulgence.
When Roy pulled back, he pushed back strands of dark hair, Johnny smiling despite his swollen lip.
“You take good care of me, Roy,” he said softly.
Regret haunted Roy’s eyes. “Not good enough.”
Johnny shook his head. “Don’t, Roy. None of this was your fault.”
“So what? I should blame the system?” Roy asked bitterly.
Johnny’s quiet statement calmed Roy, but he was determined to make Edmund Caldwell pay. Hawkins, too, and everyone who took part in Johnny’s pain.
“We’ve got him,” Roy said.
“How? The authorities won’t take my word for it.”
Roy sighed. “I know. We’ll figure out something.”
Johnny sighed, too, resting back on the pillow as he stared up at the ceiling. A plane droned in the distance as the muffled sounds of the hospital went on around them: the rattle of a cart, the call over the loudspeaker for a doctor, the voices of nurses as they walked by quickly.
“I’ve got it!” Johnny snapped his fingers.
“Oh, I don’t know, Johnny.” Roy’s tone was dubious. “She seemed more interested in her sheets than you.”
“Well, to be fair, Roy, I was bleedin’ all over her good sheets.” He laughed at his partner’s eyeroll. “But, seriously, she was the one to find me and called for help. She also gave me water and stayed with me until you and Charlie arrived.”
“Well, that was decent of her, but doesn’t mean she’ll help us.”
“She could have had a servant do all that, but she didn’t.”
“I think you’re giving her too much credit.”
“Maybe, but what can it hurt to ask her if she’ll back me up as a witness? Caldwell was there, having contact with a slave not his own.”
Roy considered the idea. He stood up. “I’ll go call Bruce.”
“Bruce?” Johnny asked in amusement.
“That’s right,” Roy said loftily. He winked and headed downstairs, flipping open his cellphone.
“Keep going. You’re only at ten thousand pounds.”
Clark lifted the weights, his muscles straining. Down here in the Cave he had privacy from the eyes of Security, but the added boost from rays of sunlight was absent.
Bruce admired the ripple of muscles as Clark worked without a shirt. Dick flipped off the parallel bars and stuck the landing, watching as Clark lifted the weights.
“I agree.” Bruce knew about Kryptonian strength but it was one thing to know about it in the abstract and another thing to see it demonstrated in front of him. His cellphone rang and he took it out. “Wayne here.”
“Hello, Bruce, it’s Roy.”
“Hi, Roy. Is Johnny all right?”
“As well as he can be. He told me something interesting.”
“Edmund Caldwell was at that orgy.”
Bruce’s blood ran cold. Despite the severity of Johnny’s injuries, he had come off lucky.
“I’m sorry to hear that.” Bruce watched Clark lift the weights over his head.
“So am I, but it gives us ammunition.”
Bruce raised his eyebrow. “It might. However, as sympathetic as Jim Gordon is to Abolitionism, he can’t go after Caldwell on the world of a slave.”
“What if someone else would testify that Caldwell was there?”
“I doubt that Arlen Hawkins would give Edmund up.”
“What about Mrs. Hawkins?”
Bruce’s eyes widened slightly. “Why would Adele Hawkins turn in her husband?”
“She’s pretty disgusted with what happened. Johnny says she saved his life. Anyway, it’s worth a try. If she’s angry enough, she just might give us what we need.”
“Thanks for this, Roy.”
“You’re welcome, and thank you.”
Bruce said his goodbye and snapped his phone shut, looking at his curious slaves.
“We’ve got him!”
Clark and Dick’s eyes widened, then Dick did a backflip and Clark lifted the weights over his head excitedly.