Disclaimer: I'm afraid I must admit that I still don't own DC or any of their output. I'm sorry. I'm working on it.

This is a CATfic. (www. freewebs. com/ catverse) It takes place the day after "Whine and Dine" and "Cold Open" and is the last thing I'm posting today. So there.

This fic is substantially different from its original incarnation. How is it different? That's for me to know.


To Tango

Dawn. A sleepy, snowy Saturday morning in Gotham City, no one about. The innocent weren't yet ready to stir; the more interesting denizens of this place were done for the day.

"Snow" might have been a bit of an overstatement. The weather couldn't seem to make up its mind. But something cold and wet was oozing from the sky, and the outside world wasn't a very pleasant place to be.

Fortunately, the heroes of this story were not required to go outside.

Lying in that delicious, dreamy state between asleep and awake, head nestled on a pillow firm and warm and masculine, Techie almost felt it was the time to make a speech. But "You're wonderful" didn't seem to cover it, and the only other thing she could think of was something corny about the final frontier. Besides, he was sleeping. She could hear him snoring softly in time with the rising and falling of her pillow.

This wasn't how she had expected to spend her night. Being romanced by the Joker had left her anticipating only one possible conclusion--an untimely death. One involving banana creme pies and a whoopee cushion.

And then she'd made a mistake that should have gotten her carted off to Arkham, which would have been some slight relief. But against all odds, she'd woken up in the arms of someone who was not Batman, not the Joker, not a doctor and not a cop. Not one of the few men in Gotham who could have come up with a good reason for dragging her to safety, either, but nevertheless, a man with a reason.

He was walking home from the Iceberg--stumbling home, really; the bartender had taken his keys. He was so drunk he could barely stand, all because of "Gemini" (who, she gathered later, had been a girl, but wasn't anything anymore.)

In her state of befuddled electrocution, she had mentioned, barely coherently, that she was a gemini.

He had been pleased.

And they'd ended up in his bedroom. Somehow. She didn't quite remember anything between the liquor cabinet and the bed. But she did remember when the fear and fury had melted away, and in a moment of pleasant warmth and fuzziness, she had discarded her shoes. Among other things.

He really was wonderful, and not just because of the way he had treated her in bed—which had surpassed her wildest expectations, not that she had expected much.

It wasn't the way she had intended to make her start. She hadn't waited for marriage. She didn't even love him. She barely knew him. There was no emotional investment. No poetry. Just two people meeting in the night, one completely plastered, the other wishing for the same. Just two people…that's all it took to tango.

It was kind of nice not to be in love with him. It had been purely recreational, and what fun it had been. After the first time, when she relaxed and the drinks hit, while his began to wear off, things got interesting. It didn't hurt that he had called her Gilda before falling asleep with his nose in her hair. It didn't hurt at all.

Smiling, she ran her fingers over his chest, not hesitating in the slightest where the smooth olive flesh gave way to angry scar tissue. It was rough, harsh, but not the kind of ickiness everyone always imagined. It wasn't pretty, but it was still just damaged human skin, and she was pleased to learn its texture.

That is, until an equally scarred hand clamped down on hers. She sat up and looked down at him, still smiling. He squinted against the morning sun.

"Morning, handsome."

"Don't shout," he growled. She winced.

"Sorry." She should have realized he was going to be hung over. Just because she didn't have to deal with the blasted things didn't mean other people shared her immunity.

He pulled the pillow over his face and rumbled something that sounded vaguely like, "Get out." She chose to ignore it.

"I can make you some coffee, if you want."

"No." His voice was a definite growl, with a hint of menace behind it.

"Tea would be better. Decaf. I used to have this peppermint tea that worked wonders." Okay, so it was the Captain's tea, and neither of them had ever used it. Still, Cap insisted that it would help, so Techie had to go along with her.

"No," he repeated.

"Okay, then," she said after a slight pause. "Have you seen my bra?" He didn't answer. She stood on her tiptoes, straining to see the white thing caught on the ceiling fan. "Never mind. Found it. And my glasses…are…" He still didn't respond. She sighed and dressed quickly. "I'm not leaving without those things, you know."

The pillow moved.

"Under the bed."

"Thanks, sweetums. Sure you don't want that tea?" He just glared at her. She knelt to retrieve her glasses, giving him a lovely view if he cared to look.

When the world had returned to focus, she stood, ran her fingers through her hair, and smiled down at him one last time.

"Te-ea?" she sang.

"Leave."

She tried to fight her smile, but within seconds she was giggling like a madwoman.

"That pun—intentional?" Judging by the look he was giving her, probably not. "Okay, sorry. I'm out of here. It's been real, Harvey. We should do it again sometime." She leaned over to kiss him, once on the left side of his mouth, once on the right, and finally in the middle. There was a distinct lack of a response. She didn't stick around long enough to see if it was due to disinterest or surprise.

She stopped once to look back. He was fingering his coin, debating whether or not to flip it. She waved cheerfully and made herself scarce.

And it wasn't until she had crossed the street that the tears started to well up.

"Way to go, Lydia. Another fine mistake brought to you by…" By what? She wasn't even sure why she had spent the night with Two-Face, why she had expected it to end well…why she had run out on the Joker, who she'd wanted for so long…why she had joined up with him so willingly, and stayed so happily…why she had left…her friends.

Well, that was one mistake that could be fixed. She turned her feet toward the lair and decided to strike the recent past from her mental record.

It was time to go home.