This is my first Batman fanfic ever so go easy ok. Anyway this story was inspired by the song 'Passing Afternoon' by Iron & Wine. Hope you guys enjoy. Please review.

The Joker had escaped from Arkham yet again. Batman often wondered if the insane clown escaped so much why the guards didn't just bolt him down to the floor and leave him in his cell for good.

It was strange though, Joker usually was in Arkham for 3 or 4 months tops before he got bored enough to escape but it had been 9 months since the clown prince of crime had returned to the outer world. Batman hadn't thought it strange at first, he was just grateful for the reprieve he had gotten from dealing with the Joker.

He was doing his usual rounds through the city when he saw the Bat signal high in the cloudy sky. It was going to rain soon. This was what he had been waiting for, some report on the Joker so he could finally find and capture the lunatic. He drove through the streets of Gotham and the first drops of rain began to splatter on his windshield. By the time he got onto the roof where the Bat signal sat it was raining heavily. But a different kind of rain, it was as if the sky was weeping. Batman couldn't help the sickening feeling he felt in the pit of his stomach.

He looked around the rooftop and saw no one. He was ready for any sort of ambush but he wasn't ready for a man he had never seen before poke his head out of the door that led to the staircase and call out to him.

"Who are you and why did you switch on the signal?" Batman asked as the man opened the door wider to let the dark knight in out of the rain. The man was in his mid fifties and looked as if he had been living on the streets for a while now.

"J-Joker paid me to give this to you," the man said nervously as he reached into his pocket and pulled out an envelope.

Batman took the envelope cautiously, waiting for laughing gas or an explosion. Nothing happened and Batman had never been so relived.

"Go find someplace dry," he said to the man who nodded and made his way hurriedly down the steps. Still cautious Batman opened the envelope and pulled out a yellowed piece of paper.

Batsy, I'm at the abandoned Cavalier hotel room 222, come find me.


That wasn't right. Joker didn't tell him exactly where he was ever. He either did a job and Batman had to find him through the police or Joker sent a puzzle for him to figure out. Something was wrong.

Batman could only think of a few other times where he had driven over 100 mph but on this night he was pushing 120. The sickening feeling in the pit of his stomach was growing worse and worse the closer he got to the Cavalier hotel. As soon as his eyes caught sight of the hotel however the sickening feeling had passed but he felt hollow inside.

He burst through the boarded up doors and raced up to the 2nd floor. The rain tapped at the windows in the old rooms with doors flung open and abandoned. Only one door was closed, room 222.

Drawing a baterang he carefully turned the door knob and pushed the rotting door open. It was dark but he could see the figure of someone propped up against the headboard. The room smelled of musk and mold and the faint hint of sorrow.

"Joker," Batman called but there was no answer.

Reaching into his utility belt with his free hand he pulled out a small flashlight and clicked it on, waiting for the Joker to pounce on him.

His eyes widened when he saw his arch enemy slumped against the headboard, eyes closed, his mouth that held a usual manic smile was now lack, and his right sleeve was rolled up with an empty syringe sticking out of the porcelain white skin.

"Joker!" Batman called in alarm as he rushed over to the other man, putting his fingers up to the Joker's neck he searched frantically for a pulse. Nothing.

"No," he said softly as he hung his head.

"Cheer up Bats," he heard the familiar voice said and he jumped off the bed and held up his baterang once more, ready to strike. He was surprised to see the Joker staring at him from the bed, empty syringe sticking out of his arm still.

"A trick," Batman said accusingly.

"I'm hurt Batman, I rise from the dead and all you can say is that it was a trick?" Joker said as he stood from the bed, ripping the syringe and rubber band off of him and tossed them on the old bed with moth eaten pillows and sheets.

"How else would you be up and talking to me if it weren't a trick," Batman said.

"No tricks, just you and your subconscious having a conversation," Joker said as he held up his hands to show that he meant no harm.

"I don't believe you," Batman said as he glared at the white skinned man.

"Believe what you want Batsy but sooner or later you will realize that I'm dead," Joker said.

"Say you are dead, why did you do it?" Batman asked.

Joker's face fell before a sad smile crossed his features. "If I'm gonna die I want it to be on my terms not theirs."

"What do you mean?"

"Arkham decided they would try some new therapy on me, electrodes directly to the brain I'm not sure how many times a day, experimentation with new drugs that made me feel like I was being liquefied from the inside out, you know just the usual medical tortures," Joker said with a wave of his hand. "I died because of it you know."

Before Batman had a chance to interrupt Joker cut him off "Yup clinically dead for three minutes before they brought me back…best three minutes I'd had in nine months."

"Why should I believe you?" Batman asked, not wanting to believe that the doctors at Arkham had resorted to using torture techniques on the inmates.

The Joker rolled up his left sleeve and shoved his mangled arm under Batman's nose. "That's not from shooting up you moron that's from testing," Joker hissed. He then turned around and Batman could see burn spots in the green hair where the shocks had been turned up to the limit and had begun to fry the man's mind.

"They killed Harley," Joker said and Batman could hear remorse in the man's voice which surprised him thoroughly.

"They were using a new chemical on us that day, I came back, she didn't," Joker said as he turned back around to face the dark knight.

"How did you do it?" Batman asked as he looked over at the syringe lying on the bed.

"Cyanide, quick and effective," Joker admitted.

"You didn't have to kill yourself," Batman said.

Joker chuckled slightly and Batman noted that it didn't sound right; there was no mirth or threat in the man's laugh. It was numb.

"What do you suggest I should have done, go to you?" Joker shook his head "You would have knocked my teeth in before I had gotten my first word out; the police were likely to have shot out my knee caps and thrown me right back into the pits of hell. I had to do it this way, it's not like you were going to end me."

"Joker I'm…" Batman trailed off.

"You're what, you're happy, sad, apathetic, what?" Joker asked.

"I'm sorry," Batman admitted softly.

"So am I Bats, so am I," Joker said as he took a step closer. "I am going to miss our little dances we've had over the years."

"Why did you call me here?" Batman asked, noting how close the green haired man was getting.

"To say goodbye," Joker whispered as he leaned in a brushed his red lips over the dark knight's. Batman closed his eyes and let Joker press his soft lips against his in a kiss more tender than Batman thought possible for the mass murderer.

He felt the gentle press of lips leave and as he opened his eyes he saw the Joker's lifeless form on the bed once more. Batman sighed sadly and turned to leave the room. "Goodbye Jack," he whispered.

Depressing isn't it? Anyway please tell me what you think okies!