When I awoke, I could instantly feel that I was sitting up, and that rope tied me to the chair in which I sat. My eyes needed little time to adjust in the light, as there was very little of it. I gave a groan, trying to ease into a state of awareness by moving the muscles that I could move.
"She awake, boss?" A voice asked. My eyes widened immediately. I had no desire to be confronted by Crane and his crazies. Squeezing my eyes shut, I let myself go limp in the chair again, feigning unconsciousness.
"What do you think?" I heard Crane question. His voice was followed by a sharp smacking sound, suggesting that he had hit one of his henchmen. Little noise followed after that, save for ever loudening footsteps approaching me.
"Addison Wayne," Crane spoke my name slowly. Still, though, I didn't dare to open my eyes. "We've brought you here for a reason."
I made no answer to Crane's statement, breathing heavily to continue the charade of my sleeping. A sigh escaped from his lips, and I heard him draw nearer. It wasn't until he held my face roughly within his hand that I opened my eyes. He was smiling now.
"You're a smart girl, Addison," He began, drawing my face so close that I could almost feel his mouth move as he spoke. "Which means that I know you didn't honestly expect me to believe you were asleep. I'm no idiot, and you're completely aware of that."
Swallowing hard, I forced my eyes to meet his directly. "Tell me why I'm here." I demanded, remaining unmoving.
"That's exactly what I wanted to hear." He said, releasing my face. He inhaled, preparing himself for the revealing of his motives.
"I, like most people," He started, gesturing to emphasize his words. "Have certain… ambitions. I don't like when people get in my way."
I felt my teeth creep forward in search of my lips as I listened to him speak. Drawing them back, I opened my mouth to permit his continuation. "Yeah? And?"
"Your boyfriend has made things increasingly hard for me." Crane told me, narrowing his eyes.
"My boyfriend is dead." I responded, no trace of emotion in my voice as I referred to Peter. Crane simply chuckled.
"Not that boyfriend. I thought we'd both acknowledged each other's intelligence." He scolded, shaking his head. "I'm talking about the one that you were so obviously in love with when we had our session."
My breathing stopped at his words. "What the fuck are you talking about?" I hissed, trying to conceal my shock at his discovery.
Propelling himself forward, Crane grabbed onto my hair, yanking my head back, forcing me to look him in the eyes once more. "I'm a psychiatrist, Addison. I've written books. I've won awards. I know that he's fucked you. It's completely evident; maybe not to everyone, but it is to me."
The blatant vulgarity of Crane's words threw me off momentarily, making it necessary for me to string together a sentence in my head. "Why would that make a difference to anything? My sex life is my business." I spat, my body tensing. Again, Crane laughed.
"The fantasy of me fucking you comes in second to what I need you for now." He informed me. My teeth bit into my tongue, remaining in place until crane released me.
"So, what is it that you need me for?" I questioned, returning my voice to its prior coldness.
"Support. You've got a lot of money, Addison, and, like I said, my ambitions reach higher than most. As a result, I need more funding; funding which you will be supplying." Crane explained, stuffing his hands into his pockets.
"And you don't have enough funding to begin with?" I asked sardonically, raising an eyebrow. Crane offered another laugh in response to my question, his eyes meeting mine again.
"You see, Addison, unlike The Joker, I like to have a plan, a flawless plan; thought out and executed to perfection. This little meeting here," He paused, waving his hand in gesture to the room in which we were. "Was merely a step that needed to be taken to ensure the success of my endeavor, something that The Joker jeopardized."
I slowly nodded my head, saying nothing, waiting for Crane to continue, an action which he picked up in short order.
"Before breaking you out of Arkham, The Joker managed to steal over half of the money that I'd set aside for this project. I highly doubt, in fact, I'm positive that he'll refuse to give the money back. Since you two seem to be friendly with each other, it seemed only too fitting to take the money from you."
"Care to tell me which project of yours I'm supposed to be funding?"
Crane took a moment to adjust his glasses before launching into another answer.
"As you may be aware of, the majority of my income came from the mob. As they stopped paying me for my services, I've decided that taking over Gotham's drug trade is the most appropriate course of action to take." He elucidated. My lips begin to throb in protest of the teeth that had crept forward, sinking into the tender skin.
"No?" He questioned, quirking a brow.
"You heard me, Crane. I'm not going to be your patroness." I said, shifting in my seat, searching for a method of escape. My efforts, however, were interrupted by a sharp slap across the face.
"You are in no place to reject my demands right now, in case you hadn't noticed." Crane hissed, placing his hand on my neck, pressing his fingers roughly into my skin. I panted, trying to bring air to my lungs. A grin appeared on Crane's face as he slid his hand to my shoulder, pulling my shirt down slightly over my shoulder.
"It's still there." He said approvingly, gazing at the bite marks that he had left on me. Lifting a leg, I shoved my foot roughly against his chest. He stumbled back, grunting as he fell against the floor.
"You bitch." He spat, pulling himself up. I planted my feet against the floor, sliding my chair back until I was against the wall.
"Shit." I cursed, knocking the chair over, my head and body roughly hitting the ground. My head began to throb with pain, causing me to wince. I shut my eyes, hoping to dull the pain. I cried out when I felt Crane's hand tangle in my hair, yanking me up. He cut the rope tying me to the chair, throwing me across the room. I gasped for breath, my chest heaving with the effort.
"You think you can reject my demands, Addison?" Crane asked, his cool demeanor returning. One of his henchmen pulled me up from the floor, slamming me against the wall prior to punching me in my stomach. I closed my eyes as bile rose into my throat, sealing my lips shut and forcing it back down.
"Now, now," Crane cautioned, placing a hand on the back of my head. "We can't do her too much damage. Only a certain amount will do."
I shivered at his touch, disgusted and hate-filled.
"However, I didn't say we were done yet." He chuckled sadistically, hitting my forehead roughly against the wall, the white tile now stained with the blood seeping from the newly formed gash where my head had hit.
The sound of gunshots caused me to open my eyes. I knew the sound of the shots. They had come to be as familiar to me as my name. I watched as a henchman crumpled in front of me.
"Joker." I said, my voice growing stronger.
"I'm here, doll face." He returned, stepping into view. His tongue flicked across his lips before he spoke. "Y'know, I'm not the kind of guy that you can mess with. That's my job, and I'm damn good at it, Cr-ane."
"Well then," Crane began, letting me drop to the floor. "You might not have wanted to complicate my plans as you succeeded in doing."
The Joker shook his head at Crane's words, pulling his switchblade from his coat and flipping it open. He dropped his gun, plunging the blade into the other henchman's chest. I squeezed my eyes shut, not wanting to watch another person die.
"Y'know, Crane, I wouldn't have had to do that if you hadn't gone to all this trouble to annoy me. I mean, it's funny, believe me, I had a good laugh about it on the way here, but did ya have to drag Addie into this? Just look at her; she doesn't like watching me kill all these people."
"She's got a lot of money; something I need for this operation to work, Joker." Crane informed him, gesturing to me. The Joker merely "tsked", drawing even closer.
"I'm not gonna lie; she's the sweetest bit of pussy I've had in a looong time, and I can tell that you'd like to go for an, uh, romp or two with her as well." He said, waggling his eyebrows suggestively.
"What gives you that idea?" Crane questioned, his cold voice faltering momentarily. The Joker raised his eyebrows and drew back as though he were in disbelief.
"I'm pretty observant, doctor, and I noticed that you, ah, left some kinda mark on my little cupcake here." The Joker said, his voice infused with pure laughter and venom, referring to the bite mark that Crane had left on my shoulder. I weakly raised an eyebrow, looking to him.
"I didn't think you knew what it was."
"Believe me, Addie, I'm not stupid." He reminded me before turning his gaze back to the man before him. "Maybe I never told you, but I'm a greedy man, Crane. I don't like sharing my things. It's even worse when someone damages my things. Do you think I'm gonna want to have to look at these bruises when I'm fucking Addie? Do you think it'll make me happy? Do I sound happy?"
Crane's lips pressed into a thin line. He shook his head.
"No, you certainly do not."
The Joker sighed, pulling a detonator out of his coat.
"I'm sure you know that I like playing games, but I'm busy today, and I don't have time to play games with you, Johnny. So, I rigged the whole place to blow." He told Crane before muttering: "I knew we'd run into this kind of shit."
Crane's eyes widened. I inhaled sharply as he pulled me up from the ground, twisting my arm until the sickening sound of something snapping fell upon my ears. I gasped, then wincing at the pain as Crane threw me to the floor. The Joker's eyes narrowed, and he progressed forward swiftly, grabbing Crane by the collar of his shirt, holding his knife in front of the doctor's face.
"I thought I just told you that I don't like people ruining what belongs to me." He growled. Crane closed his eyes, not responding.
"Aw, why so serious, Johnny boy?" He asked. He gave a blood-curdling laugh before stabbing Crane in the stomach. His eyes opened, staring at the ceiling; he was still breathing.
Approaching me, The Joker picked me up off of the floor, throwing me over his shoulder. Walking out of the room, he pressed the button, setting off the bomb.
The sounds of multiple explosions met my ears, each only seconds apart. The Joker kicked open the door that lead us outside, walking several more meters before lowering me to the ground. I watched as the warehouse we had been in was blown completely away, leaving a raging fire behind.
I propped myself up with difficulty, a million words perching on my tongue, none of them able to be spoken. The Joker bent down, slipping his switchblade into his pocket, licking his lips before brushing my hair away from my face, a gesture so gentle I would never have guessed him to be capable of doing such a thing.
"If you're a strong as I think you are," He began, placing a Joker card in the palm of my hand. "then you'll make your way out of this alive."
"What?" I questioned, arching an eyebrow.
"I don't know how to put this to you, sweetheart, I've gotta go away for a little while. There's some… business that I need to attend to outside of Gotham. I just came here to get you out of your predicament." He explained. "But don't worry, baby. I'll be back. I could never forget you, and I don't think you could forget me. So don't, alright?"
"I won't." I vowed, too weak to argue.
I remained silent as The Joker leaned into me, placing a rough kiss upon my parched mouth followed by a pat on the cheek.
"See ya later, Addie."
I felt nothing but sick, demented longing as The Joker stood, walking away, leaving me on the ground. I knew that his promise would inevitably come true.
And I was praying for that day to arrive sooner.
Well, there you have it; the end "The Joker and the Queen of Hearts". It took quite a while to write, and for that I apologize. Hopefully the conclusion to this story was worth the wait.
Several things: I will undoubtedly be writing a sequel to this story. I have yet to start writing it, however. In the meantime, though, I've started to dabble with some Joker/Harley stuff. I have now to decide whether to focus on that story or the sequel. Your input will help, so don't be afraid to comment and tell me what you think.
I'd like to thank everyone that has reviewed this story. You guys are awsome; feedback keeps me more driven than I would be otherwise.
Well, that's it, I guess. Thanks for reading!