Nothing But Heartache

by dead2self

Rating: K

Summary: One night in Bruce Wayne's apartment confirms what Rachel has always known to be true.

Notes: What is this? I'm not writing gen?! Well... this isn't so much romance as it is a study of Rachel and Bruce's relationship. I took her anger at Bruce to mean that she really did love Harvey and was kinda blinded by that relationship, and I feel like if she had lived through the film she would have reconciled with Bruce and gone back to her indecision... So I hope that is expressed in this fic. I don't hate Rachel/Bruce. In fact, I think they're perfect together, but I can't really work out how it would work out well... Oh well..

If anyone has seen this already on lj, I added a few subtle changes that make me more happy with it and make Rachel seem less angsty. haha... Enjoy!

The kiss was soft, comfortable, perfect, but distant. I knew he had another mistress, and he knew I knew. But even as he walked away, I couldn't help but wonder… Could I do this?

I couldn't simply flirt with the idea of loving Bruce. Oh, I loved him; I'd always love him, but to be in love with Bruce. Could I do it?

I had tea with Alfred until he left to help Bruce, and then I slept fitfully while I waited for the press conference in the morning. Every time I woke with a start, hoping that Bruce had just walked in to tell me that he changed his mind. That he'd called Harvey and cancelled the whole deal. That, perhaps, my words, my careful flirting with being in love with Bruce, would mean more to him than his mistress. A small part of me clenched with fear every time I didn't wake up to see him, flashes of a torn, emancipated caped crusader gracing the morning paper playing over and over until sleep overtook me again.

I woke up in the late morning, exhausted, and he still was not there. I fixed myself breakfast in the silent kitchen, overlooking the city that had Bruce so duty-bound. It glared back with taunting sunlight. Could you sleep like that every night? it asked. Could you wake up alone?

I flicked on Bruce's larger-than-necessary television to distract myself with the political pre-show to the press conference. My heart dropped when I saw Bruce slip into the room, caught by the cameras that loved him so much. I wanted him to leave; I wanted to postpone this decision, this terrible, crippling decision.

Harvey stepped forward. I shot to my feet and nearly screamed at him through the television. Harvey was handcuffed, and Bruce stood by idly.

Rage bubbled up in my stomach, and abruptly I realized that I did love Harvey Dent. More than Bruce Wayne. The shock of it caused my legs to buckle and I fell back into my seat in shock. Then, while I could still see my feelings with such clarity, I clawed through my purse for a pen, tearing through Bruce's study for some stationary and an envelope. Bruce deserved this; deserved to know how I felt.

The words were kind, but I funneled all my frustration into the parchment. Harvey being used as bait – a stroke of the pen. Bruce's mistress, now forced on Harvey as well – crossing the t's. My indecision causing pain to the one I loved most – dotting the i's. My decision causing pain, though deserved, to the one I loved longest – signing my name.

There is nothing he can offer me but heartbreak. I know it. When I hand Alfred the letter, I believe he knows it. I'm afraid Bruce is the only one who doesn't know it. I don't want him to know it and I want him to know it. I wonder if Alfred will never show Bruce the letter, because he knows how badly it will hurt him as much as I do.

The possibility that he'll never read it is little comfort.

Because I can't do it. And with Harvey waiting, I don't want to.