The clock on the night stand read three in the morning as Bruce came into the room quietly. As usual, Marie's hair was sprawled on the pages of the medical journals and books on the desk. She had been doing this for six months ever since she moved in with Bruce after the chaos of the Joker and the death of Harvey Dent. Bruce knew that Marie was suffering from nightmares even though she would deny it when asked. Bruce was disturbed at the fact that her remedy to her lack of sleep was to dive into medical studies and not try to clam herself with something else, it was always non stop work for her. He also had a feeling her nightmares were getting worse over the course of time. He sighed as he made his way over to the bathroom.
Once he shut the door, he flicked on the lights to look at the new bruises and see how his bullet wound was doing. Fortunately for him, he had his own private doctor when he would come home, but that would not stop her from complaining and pleading him to stop. At times, it would make Bruce prefer Alfred to clean up his wounds like he used to, but he allowed Marie nonetheless because eventually she would notice them. Bruce ran his hand over his massive bruise that was beginning to form on his left arm. He proceeded with his nightly routine, hoping that he wouldn't get reprehended tonight.
Marie fluttered her eyes open as she heard water running inside the bathroom. She got up to gather her first aid kit from the closet and prepared herself for the new bruises. Marie did not only have to face the physical bruises but also the emotional ones that still seemed to linger. Rachel's death was a complete shock to Bruce, even though Marie was still jealous of Rachel, she couldn't help but feel a twitch of sadness for him. Marie knew she couldn't erase the past between Rachel and Bruce, but she knew she could make her present with Bruce a lot better. In the past few months Marie has done a great deal of thinking, and she has come to the conclusion that staying by Bruce was the best decision she ever made in her entire life.
Bruce turned off the shower knob and got out. As he dried himself, he could already sense that Marie was up and about the room preparing her medical kit. He had no idea how he was going to face her this time. Somehow he had gotten used to it and knew she did too. Marie didn't wince as much like in the first few months when she saw a huge bruise. Tonight would be indifferent.
Marie sorted out a few pieces of cloths with alcohol as she waited for Bruce to come out.
"I don't think it will be necessary to use that much bandages." Bruce shut the door behind him as he threw the towel in the hamper.
Marie turned and couldn't help but smile at his jest. "I always like to be prepared."
"Right, I forget I am dealing with a doctor who knows what she is doing. I should shut my mouth and stay still." Bruce crossed over to the bed and sat down on the edge of it.
"You are quite right. Now, this is gonna sting a little." Marie placed the cloth soaked in alcohol on his wound. Bruce winced in pain as the contact with the cloth stung him. Marie dabbed the cloth gently as she watched him. With one of her hands she took hold of his chin and she kissed him softly to distract him from the pain as she dabbed a bit harder to stop the blood that began to ooze out. Bruce kissed her a bit harder while the pain still hit him. For a moment Marie got distracted and forgot completely about what she was doing. She dropped the cloth to the floor as Bruce pulled her up onto his lap. His hands began to glide up and down her thighs as her hands wrapped around his neck. His kisses trailed down to her neck as she let out a small moan that enlightened him further more. Marie's hands slowly began to sink down Bruce's arms, she gasped as she realized the blood was trickling down onto the silk sheets.
Marie suddenly pulled back. Bruce furrowed his brows in confusion. "Do you want take this a step further?"
Marie rolled her eyes. "No...at least not yet. The blood stained the sheets, I need to finish cleaning you up."
"Just leave it like that, its only a little that spilled." Bruce resumed kissing her neck hoping to get her back to where they had started.
She pushed Bruce away from her neck. "No, Alfred will freak out if he sees the stain and if we let it get bigger. First thing tomorrow I will get new sheets and not let him come into the room."
Bruce chuckled as he let her finish. Amused that she was scared of Alfred. "Why are you scared of Alfred, he changes the sheets every two months."
"Well, he just changed these last week. And your sheets are Egyptian cotton, sheets that always tend to be very pricey. The prince, I am sure, likes to sleep in comfortable relaxing sheets." Marie remarked as she put everything away.
"You're not being fair." Bruce threw back at her.
Marie raised her eyebrows and placed her hands on hips. "And what do you mean by that?"
"You sleep in the same bed." Bruce smirked devilishly.
"Well, you got me there." Marie bit her lip and placed the kit back in its place.
Bruce stood and walked over to where she was. "Speaking of sleep, did you have another nightmare?"
Marie sighed as she didn't really want to talk about it. "Maybe."
Bruce rolled his eyes and crossed his arms over his chest. "Can you at least tell me about it. I think you should talk about it, maybe you might get rid of it."
"Bruce, its something I don't want to talk about because its complicated."
"What is complicated about a nightmare? Marie, just talk to me."
"Bruce, stop making this so difficult." Marie pushed past him and headed over to the bed.
"Wow, I'm making this difficult? I am the one here offering you support." Bruce watched as Marie prepared the bed and ignored his comment. "What if you told me half of it?"
Marie placed the extra pillows they don't use on the chair. "No."
"Fine, I guess we are going to start to keep secrets from each other again." Bruce gave up and laid down on the bed.
Marie threw the extra cover on the floor. "Fine, I will tell you. But the reason I didn't tell you was because I didn't want to worry you." She laid down next to Bruce as she mentally prepared herself to tell him of her constant nightmare that plagued her mind for the past six months. "I have a feeling Harvey still wants something with me, I know he is dead but I can feel it and in my dream it just gets worse. First, he had me locked up in a room and instead of a window, there is glass where I can look into the other room. Joker appears too. And you're in the other room, as Batman, strapped down to a table. Harvey was in the same room as I, he stood in the corner watching me as I looked at you. In the dream, he knows that I have an attachment to Batman, he kept telling me to tell him who you are. Because he didn't want to unmask you, it would have been too easy. He said he wanted to make you and me suffer for what had happened to Rachel. Joker appeared in the other room with you and just tortured you endlessly, and as I looked at you through the glass, you shook your head for me not to reveal your identity as you heard Harvey yell at me to tell him who you are. And then..." Marie burst into tears before she could finish telling Bruce her nightmare. Bruce slid her closer to his body as she cried into his chest.
He waited for a few moments until she calmed down. "I understand if you don't want to tell me anymore."
Marie shook her head. "Might as well tell you everything."
Bruce looked at her. "Are you sure?" She nodded. "Alright, and then what happened?"
"He began to torture me very harshly and I heard you screaming my name, but that was when I would wake up every time." Marie waited for Bruce's reaction. His flawless face showed pain and sadness for what he was putting her through for being who he was. She had already gone through enough.
"I'm sorry." He whispered as he stroked her hair.
"You don't have to be. Harvey and I had problems long before you came along."
"But I just made them worse."
Marie shook her head. "No you did not. Look, I understand that you cannot stop being this other dark figure you created, I get that. Otherwise I wouldn't be right here with you. Now, would I like for you to give this up...yes very much but I know you cannot even if the people of Gotham gave up on you. It seems that my Uncle gave up on you."
Bruce remained silent for a few moments. He contemplated that now there was a man hunt out for him and that he had to be really careful this time. Then something popped into his head, and idea that had been poking at him the past few months. "Marry me."
Marie came out of her almost sleep trance and propped up against the head board. "What?"
"Bruce." Marie was speechless as she tried to come up with the right words to say. "I-"
Bruce placed his fingers onto of her pink lips. "Just say yes."
"I don't think I can."
This was a stab to Bruce's heart. "What?"
Marie looked away from his gaze. "You know that I was engaged once before and I have not been so sure of marriage ever since. Marriage is a very serious commitment Bruce."
"I know it is and I want to take that step with you." Bruce grasped her shoulders.
"Why so suddenly do you ask me this?" Marie turned back to him to look him fully in the eyes and see his reaction to the question.
"Why do you doubt me?"
"I am not doubting you. I am asking you a simple question."
Bruce took hold of her hand and looked at her straight in the eyes. "Because I love you it is that simple."
Marie knew his answer was truthful but she had to ask one more question. "Okay, I will answer you but after you answer another question of mine."
"Go for it." Bruce shook his head as he waited for her next question.
"Why did you not propose to Rachel, why did you wait so long to be with her? What stopped you from being with her?"
Bruce looked at her once again in the eyes. "It was a mistake and I don't want to make the same mistake. I guess I felt something stronger with you that I couldn't keep myself away from you. I mean there was a period in our relationship where I wanted to distance myself from you but I couldn't. And I tried so hard but it would have been really stupid if I did decide not to be with you. With Rachel things were different and with you there is so much more. I want to be with you and I am prepared to do what is necessary to be with you and protect you." Bruce reached out to her. "Now, can I have an answer to my question."
"You're right, things were different with Harvey. I also wanted to separate myself from you but I couldn't grasp it." Marie reached out for his hand. "I guess my answer is yes."
"You guess?" Bruce raised his brow as he reached out to her and laid her back down. Marie nodded. Bruce pinned her arms above her head as he laid on top of her. "Don't you think I deserve a better answer?" He kissed her fully on the lips. Marie melted as his kisses were always so good and tempting.
Marie pulled back and answered out of breath. "Yes, absolutely I will marry you."
Bruce smirked seductively. "That's better."
A/N: AWWWW! :) YAY!!! Well thats the end....for now, I think. I hope you enjoyed this story as I enjoyed very much writing it for all of you. Thank you all for the support you have given me while I wrote this story. It makes my day to know that my story entertained all of you and made you crave it like a soap opera. Sorry for the cliffhangers I threw at you all!
Well, now I started a new called "Our Remains." It was this new idea that did not leave me alone, so you are all welcome to check it out. Thanks again for reading and reviewing! :)