TITLE: Mask

AUTHOR: Kichi

RATING: M

PAIRING (if applicable):

NOTES: NOLAN-VERSE I simply adore Heath Ledger's Joker. So should you... :D

ARCHIVE:

SUMMARY: The Joker's first few days at Arkham

DISCLAIMER: I do not own these characters, I make no money from writing this, so don't be a douche and sue me or something.

Have you ever worn the mask one-two one-two,
M to the A to the S to the K
Put the mask upon the face just to make the next day,
Feds be hawkin' me
Jokers be stalkin' me,
I walk the streets and camouflage my identity,
My posse in the Brooklyn wear the mask.
My crew in the Jersey wear the mask.
Stick up kids doing boogie woogie wear the mask.
Yeah everybody wear the mask but how long will it last?

"Who wants to see what this piece of shit looks like without his makeup on?" The guard asked his fellows.

"No!" came a shout and the guards were upon their victim like a tidal wave. He kicked, he squirmed, thrashed, shrieked, and snarled. But his strength was useless against so many. His heart was pounding in his ears, his throat was raw from screaming, his breath was coming in quick bursts and they held him until he was worn out.

For a horrible (and slightly hilarious) moment he was reminded of the 'weepy young devotchka' from "a clockwork orange". They were doing the same thing to him, he wasn't crying (and he prayed they didn't mean to rape him), but the end result was the same. They wore him out with sheer numbers and now they could have their way with him. He giggled weakly. He was suddenly boneless with exhaustion, his head lolled back and another chuckle escaped him.

"That's a good boy, just relax." He tensed and tried vainly to get free but the guards were still holding him firmly in place.

"You- I'll kill you!" he snarled. "No!" he howled again as an orderly appeared with a bar of soap and a steaming wash cloth. He screamed as they dragged him to his knees and pushed his head down. His cries reached an ear-shattering pitch when a bucket of lukewarm water was dumped on his head.

Several hands began to scrub him at once. He snapped at their fingers with his teeth until someone grabbed him, jamming their thumb behind his jaw, under his ear. The pain was instant, and intense. He froze like a deer in head lights and after a tense moment he tried to pull away. He could barely see as suds and hot wash clothes swiped his face. Soon each pass of the wash cloth was painful as they vigorously scrubbed his skin.

"Ah!" he winced repeatedly, trying to squirm away.

"This black shit is like tar." one snapped.

"The cheap-ass lipstick stained his face!" another chortled, and scrubbed his scars harder. He tried to jerk away, to snap his teeth but three or four men were leaning all their weight on him. If he slid any lower his throat would be pressed against the rim of the sink. He despised their momentary control over him. He howled in pain as the soap got in his eyes and mouth as he tried to wrench out of their grip.

"Serves him right." one muttered. Finally the tap was shut off and a dry towel was rubbed in his face. His cries of indignant fury were smothered. As soon as the towel was gone his dropped his head, stared at the floor, and refused to meet anyone's gaze. Instantly a hand tangled in his hair and jerked his head back.

"Well fuck me runnin'! If it weren't for those scars and those teeth, he'd be a pretty little thing, wouldn't he?" there was laughter (at his expense- completely intolerable) and he hissed, his teeth bared in a snarl. His face twisted in fury and he struggled in vain.

"Andy would like him anyway." more laughter.

"I am going to kill each of you... slowly." he rasped. There was more laughter and he screeched and renewed his frenzied thrashing.

"Maybe we should let Andy have a go at him." an older male with dark hair and a mustache suggested.

"No." A man with a hint of grey in his brown hair said. "We save that for a special occasion." he leaned down so he was in the Joker's line of vision. "If he smarten's up and behaves he'll never have to worry about who Andy is." a low, angry bubble of laughter burst from the Joker, he sneered, his eyes flashing.

"You think you can scare me?" he laughed again, this time the sound was rich with pure amusement.

"I hope your not, because it's always that much more satisfying when you get knocked off that high horse, Mr. Bad-ass fuckin' killer clown. Your gonna fall like all the rest, and then your gonna realize that you ain't such hot shit after all. Your gonna be real fuckin' sorry if you don't shut that ugly mouth of yours." He followed his statement with a swift punch in the face. Blood began to leak out of the younger man's nose almost instantly. He cursed in agony which turned into a shuddering laugh as his eyes began to water.

"Dead.. All of you." he laughed slowly. What followed was a beating even the batman couldn't deliver. The Joker mused that if he'd had eight legs and arms and was using nearly every one to beat him at the same time- no problem, but then he'd be a Hindu god- right? He giggled senselessly as the guards beat him, which turned into a choked gasp as a boot rammed into his stomach.

*****

He regained consciousness as they were carrying him to his room. The sudden, intense onslaught of pain sent a moan of agony past his unwilling lips.

"Hey, he's up. Let's throw him in Andy's room for a bit-"

"Gary said 'No', Jake. Besides, if we do that he won't survive the night. I don't want to get in trouble. Let's toss him in there when he heals."

"Fine.." the one named Jake mumbled and let go of the Joker's legs. He unlocked the door, swung it wide, and grabbed the barely-conscious man's legs. They hauled him inside and tossed him on the bed, then each began to put his ankles and wrists in restraints. He was in far too much pain to fight them. He closed his eyes.

*****

He woke to intense light burning his retinas. He quickly shut his eyes again, but a horrible, pounding headache swiftly followed. His mouth hung open as the rest of his body began to throb in agony. He tried to move and felt thick cuffs of leather around his wrists and ankles and a heavy leather belt over his waist, pinning him down. He turned his head to glance around the white room. There was a single heavily barred window behind him, he could just see the top of it if he tipped his head all the way back. He groaned aloud as fierce pain swept through him when he moved.

Suddenly he heard rusty hinges squeaking and then a ringing clang. He raised his head and saw someone looking at him through a small 5" by 8" window on the door. He let his head drop back as a surge of powerful, uncomfortable emotions swept through him. He heard voices on the other side of the door. Someone mentioning his name. He turned his face away. His eyes began to burn, and the realization sent a blast of hot rage flowing through him. He tugged his restraints. He kicked his feet. He was restrained rather well. There was only one thing he could do. He sucked in a lungful of air and began to scream.

He screamed again as soon as he drew in enough air. So loud were his cries that he didn't hear the bolts in the door being turned. Suddenly the face behind the door was hovering above him as he struggled violently.

"Son, you need to calm down, or I'll have to administer a sedative." The Joker was beyond words. He spat at the man and continued to writhe, howling uselessly. Suddenly the room was filling with more doctors staring down at him. He twisted and tugged at his restraints.

"I want my makeup!" he suddenly roared, his shoulders lifting off the mattress as he shrieked.

"Nurse." the first doctor said, and a young woman maneuvered around the others with a small bottle and a syringe.

"Get away!" he bellowed, his eyes widening. He did not want them pumping him full of drugs. They usually affected him differently then they were meant to, with symptoms ranging from no effect whatsoever to horrible vertigo and illness. "No! No!" he cringed, trying to squirm away.

"We need his arm." The doctor said, ignoring him. He felt someone put their hands on his shoulders and push him down with ease, despite his struggling. The lovely, young nurse tied a strip of rubber around his forearm. He snapped his teeth at her, but she was already done and pulling back. The doctor drew close and he felt the sting of the small needle. The grip on him eased off at once, and he lay gasping for a moment.

Suddenly he felt good. Not just sort of good- really, really good.

"Oh..." he moaned softly, the strength instantly went out of him, his head fell back and he closed his eyes.

*****

He woke slowly. At first he could not open his eyes and struggled briefly before giving up and slipping back into unconsciousness. When he was finally able to force the heavy lids upward the room was dark. His jaw dropped when he realized he'd lost a whole day. Then he felt vomit rising up in his throat. He quickly turned his head and vomit shot out of his mouth. He lay still for a moment, shuddering, gasping painfully. His stomach felt like it was full of writhing snakes and he grit his teeth as he shivered. The stench of bile and digested food made him retch again and in his misery he thought of the Batman. Sudden and fierce hatred welled up. If the bastard had not stopped his fall he would not be there fighting with sickness and spinning walls. His stomach heaved again and he gagged hoarsely, but apparently he had nothing left to expel. His head fell back onto the pillow and his eyes slid shut. Then the dizziness grew much worse.

"Oh!" he gasped, his eyes snapping open. His stomach lurched again and he again twisted to his side, retching violently. Bitter bile spattered across his sheets.

For several minutes he lay quietly, desperately trying to will the sickness away. His eyes rolled up in his head as another wave of dizziness hit. "Shit," he groaned in dismay. "Oh, shit.." He weakly tugged at his restraints, a low moan of pain and rage escaped him as he realized the futility of his actions. He kicked his feet and tried to lift himself off the mattress, but he only was able to rise up an inch or so. His features twisted in agony as his stomach gurgled unpleasantly again. He hated sickness! He preferred a beating any day. "Stop, please stop." he begged, but he was fairly certain he still had hours of misery ahead of him.

*****

He was awake when two orderlies entered his room. The room had finally ceased spinning and his stomach had finally calmed, but he was still spattered with vomit as was the floor and his bed.

"Jesus H. Christ!" one of the orderlies groaned, and began to choke. The Joker laughed weakly.

"This isn't my fault." he rasped, his throat raw. The men stormed out, slamming the door shut behind them. "You gotta be kidding me.." he murmured in shock. "You ass holes can't leave me like this!" He was about to begin a frenzied struggle to escape when he saw a face peering in the window. It opened swiftly and the men re-entered. One had a tazer gun and the other quickly began to undo the buckles holding him in place. His breath began to quicken. He did not look forward to finding out just what it felt like to be zapped, but he had to get the hell out immediately. He waited until his legs were free before he snatched the tazer free from the guard's numb grasp and plunged it into the throat of the man releasing him. He felt the other man hitting him again and again and jammed the tazer into his solar plexus. He watched them fall even as his head spun. He shook his head and quickly finished undoing the buckle across his waist. He swung his legs over the edge of his bed and the moment he put his weight on them they crumpled beneath him like straw. He gasped in shock as he collided with the floor, momentarily unsure how it had happened. He heard people in the hallway, he had to get up. He pushed himself up on trembling arms and pulled his knees up, then he rose, shaking violently.

The world spun and for the first time he wondered what the hell they had given him. He felt a hand on his ankle and he almost collapsed again. The man released him and recoiled when he saw the tazer still in Joker's hand and quickly descending, but the drugged young man was still quick. The man jerked violently beneath him and the loud crackling the gun emitted was eliciting murmurs from those outside. He clutched the tazer and stumbled to the door.

As soon as he peeked outside he heard cries of alarm. For a moment he considered holding the guards hostage, but decided to make a run for it instead as a burst of adrenaline raced through him. He pounded down the hallway, nurses screaming and hiding the moment they saw him. He burst into their station and grabbed the smallest one by the hair.

"Gimme keys!" he roared and began to frantically search her pockets. Then he saw them hiding in her uniform attached to a chain. He yanked them off, giggling at her cry of pain. He heard people coming and leapt to his feet and ran to the door. He cursed as he fumbled with the keys, none fitting until at last he found the one, breaking it in his haste to get it out of the lock. He slammed the door shut behind him and ran.

Up ahead he saw elevators and his eyes scanned quickly for the stairs. He saw the exit sign and flew towards it, his lungs burning. He almost fell down the stairs in his haste and for a moment he clutched the railing, gasping for air. He heard someone pounding on a door and a breathless chuckle escaped him. He continued down.

After his third flight he was starting to get clumsier. Then he heard a door open as looked down and saw guards running in. He gasped and spun around and headed back up to a door he'd just passed. There were more waiting for him.

"No!" he cried. His brain understood the futility of his escape attempt before he would consciously allow and when his legs gave out he shrieked in rage. The cry echoed monstrously in the stairwell along with the tread of the guards who advanced upon him.

They grabbed him and hauled him to his feet when they realized he was already spent. He was too tired and drugged up to fight anymore. The guards ended up half-carrying, half-dragging him back to his cell.

He had long since regained his breath and stared at the room with fierce loathing. His sheets had been changed and he saw a new set of the detested white hospital pajamas. Most of the guards stayed outside the room but the two that still supported him began to quickly undress him. He was instantly tense again and wanted to scream, but he was too exhausted to do more then snarl and gnash his teeth.

The tossed him on the bed like he weighed nothing and quickly strapped him down. He began to kick his legs the moment they pinned his wrists down, but two more guards quickly entered the room and caught his feet. He tried to free himself, but he knew it was pointless. He stiffened as the weight of his helplessness came crashing down.

"Are you ready to behave now? Or do we need to sedate you again? Might I remind you, it's been nearly 36 hours since you've eaten. You need food immediately. Can you behave and eat or must we use an IV?" His stomach roared loud enough for those in his room to hear. Their quiet laughter sent him into a fit of rage. He roared in fury and began to thrash wildly until he heard to door slam shut. Then he fell back, gasping. He was alone. He hadn't realized how hungry he was, he'd been too busy puking his guts out. But he was suddenly all too aware of the gnawing ache in his belly. It was yet another pain he had to deal with. He was good at fighting pain, ignoring it. He'd been treated far worse than this, and yet... For awhile there he had been free. Truly, blissfully free. Now he was in a cage, tied to a bed, beaten, drugged, and starving.

"This is... Bull shit." he moaned, his voice breaking as he struggled not to give in to his weaker emotions. But it was useless. His eyes began to burn, and the more he fought it, the quicker the moisture built up until it overflowed and slid down his temples and into his hair. The face everyone had come to dread had fallen away to reveal a tortured young man. He struggled to put the emotions away, bottle them up like he always did. Only anger and hatred were allowed- they served a purpose. His dark humor that mocked everything right and good was wilting beneath the weight of his fury. He closed his eyes, hating the warm tears dripping from them. "You did this to me." he thought again of the bat, his lips curled in a snarl. "I'll make you cry... Just you wait."

A/N: I might add a second part to this or just do another one-shot. Either way I have more ideas, but I think I've tortured him enough for now.