Another oneshot, Nolanverse Joker and Harley. I really don't know what to consider this. Is it fluff? You decide. I just came up with a simple domestic situation...as simple as only Joker and Harley can make it. Enjoy...and please review! XD
The Joker walked into the abandoned theatre he called home with Harley. He had come in rather late and saw that she had fallen asleep on the sofa, but was too exhausted to bother picking her up and carrying her to the bed. He knew that she had waited up for him; she always did. He took off his coat and covered Harley's sleeping body, slightly grinning at her as she flinched.
Once upstairs in the bedroom, The Joker shut the door loudly behind him and didn't care if he had woken her. He was annoyed about his night on the town. He had lost three of his men in the jewelry store heist. One of his men had apparently squealed to Gordon and his goons came barging into the store, guns at the ready and, of course, The Batman close behind. Luckily, he and his remaining men were able to get out in time and hide their tracks. However, he was really irked at the fact that he would have to find a few more lackeys, which was always a chore.
He growled to himself as he took off his waistcoat and brought down his suspenders. He popped his neck as he took off his tie and shirt and then walked to the bathroom, sighing. He looked into the mirror and examined the deep cut on his shoulder he had gotten a few days before. He ran his finger across the healing wound and hissed through his teeth as he kicked off his shoes.
"Pud?" came Harley's soft voice behind him.
He slowly turned and saw his little harlequin leaning against the door frame of the bathroom, wearing a black tank top with red sleep shorts, her hair disheveled. She was wearing his big purple coat and had picked up his tie from the floor and was twirling the fabric between her fingers. The Joker always thought she looked adorable when she woke up, but he just wasn't in the mood right now to feel anything.
"Hey," he quietly greeted her. "Did I wake you?"
Harley shrugged. "I needed to wake up. I don't like falling asleep on the couch."
"I don't like you doing that either," he told her as he turned on the sink tap to wash the paint from his face. "You make me feel like a teenager."
She stepped closer to the sink and ran her fingers down his back. He jerked up his head and softly shrugged away from her touch and she decided to lean against the wall while he washed his face. After he had dried off, he looked at her and could see that he had hit an uneasy nerve with her. He didn't care at that moment. He just wanted to relax.
They stood there looking at one another until The Joker threw the towel onto the counter and sighed. "Well?" he asked harshly. "Are you just gonna stand there or are you gonna draw a bath for me?"
Harley jumped at the tone of his voice and looked into his dark eyes. She could see that he wasn't in the mood for her affection, so she hurriedly went over to the tub and turned on the water. He watched her bend over as she poured in a generous amount of bubble bath, and he had the urge to smack her really hard across her bottom for wearing such revealing shorts around the house. He had told her to be careful about what she wore when he wasn't at home, just in case some of his men were still stalking around the place. However, he shrugged off the urge and combed out his hair as the tub filled with bubbles and steamy water.
Harley turned off the faucet when she had gotten it at the perfect level for him and turned to face him as he took off his pants and boxers. She couldn't help but eye his toned body as he stood there with a towel over his shoulder. When he noticed her gaze, he glared at her with a frown and she quickly walked to the bathroom door. He grabbed her by the waist and gripped her body close to his. He put his mouth to her ear and squeezed her harder to his side, making her whine uncomfortably.
The Joker was about to reprimand her about her shorts but after hearing her whimper, for some reason, he became too tired to scold Harley about her clothes. Instead, he gently kissed her shoulder and whispered, "Do me a favor, lover?" Harley nodded as he said, "There's a small tear in the left sleeve of my coat. Stitch it up for Daddy, will you?"
Harley smirked. "Of course."
She wiped up the excess water that had splashed onto the counter from him washing his face. He groaned as he slowly climbed into the tub and the hot water made contact with his skin. Sighing, he put his head in his hands and closed his eyes. He took deep relaxing breaths that were soon interrupted by Harley saying, "Do you want me to scrub your back, Puddin'?"
He answered, his eyes still closed, "Nah, Harley. That's okay."
"Are you sure? If you want me to, I can…"
"What I want is for you to leave me the fuck alone so I can relax! Is that too much to ask, sweetheart?!" His eyes had shot open and he glared at Harley, whose eyes had grown wider as his voice grew louder. She still gripped his tie in his hands and was wringing it as he continued to scold her. "I know I'm home late but the last thing I need is for you to go all 'Mommy' on me and wait up for me and then try to bathe me! I'm a grown man, Harley! Gimme some room! And, I swear, if you wrinkle my fucking tie…!"
He stopped himself and stared at her as she straightened the silk fabric in her hands. She bit her lip and tried to keep the tears in her eyes from falling, but she didn't know that he had seen the sad glow in her eyes as she took off his coat and pretended to examine the tear she needed to fix. "Okay, Mistah J. I'm sor—I mean…I'll go and stitch this up for you." She kept her head down and shut the door behind her.
The Joker slowly reclined against the wall of the tub and relished in the feel of the scalding water on his skin as he thought about what he had just said to Harley. It intrigued him that after the two years they had been together that she could still put up with his complex emotions and abrupt commands. He knew that most women – well, at least the stereotypical ones in the movies that Harley watched on TV – would have either left their men or tried to poison them for treating them badly. Harley wasn't like that, however, and though it confused him, The Joker loved seeing how far he could push her before she finally exploded and walked out the door.
If she ever did, he thought to himself. She would come crawling right back. She's got nowhere else to go.
"Harley!" he suddenly shouted.
"Yes, Pud—ouch!" came her answer.
He raised an eyebrow as she opened the bathroom door, sucking her thumb. He smirked. "You get stuck?"
"Yeah," she said quietly. "You startled me."
The Joker grinned. "You know what, baby?" he asked. "I think I could use a good scrub. You mind?" He held up the loofah for her as she smiled and knelt beside him.
"Of course I don't mind," she cooed as she worked up a good lather of soap and began to massage it up and down his back.
He moaned softly as she scrubbed harder. He really did like it when she massaged him like this, her small hands slowly navigating the soapy loofah on his shoulders and lower back, her fingers sometimes running along his warm skin. "That's good, Harley baby."
"You're really tense, Mistah J," she whispered. "Rough night?"
The Joker opened his eyes and frowned as he was reminded of the huge screw up of a heist. "What did I tell you about asking me about jobs, Harley?"
Harley paused in her scrubbing and replied, "Don't ask about them unless…unless you want to talk about them. If I don't go out with you on a job, then it's…"
"None of your business," he finished her sentence. "Do it again and I'll…" He turned to face her, his harsh grimace burning into her wide baby blues. When he saw her calm expression, eyes wide and bright and full lips slightly parted, his own expression softened and he gave her a small smile. "Hey."
She smiled. "Yes?"
"Where's my kiss?" he muttered in a tired voice. She slowly leaned in and pressed her lips to his.
Why couldn't he finish threatening her? When her dazzling eyes pierced his stern ones, his callous words stopped in his throat and he suddenly wanted to taste the red lips that had unconsciously parted for him.
He quickly pulled away from her lips. "Are you done with my coat?" Harley shook her head and he sighed. "What's taking so long, then?"
"Well, you called me in here, and –"
"So? You should have told me you were busy with my coat. You didn't have to come in here."
"But, Puddin'. You wanted me to…and I wanted to make sure that…"
"What I want you to do and what you want to do are two entirely different things, Harley. When I tell you to do something, you do it!"
"But but but," he mocked her. "You're gonna have a very blistered 'but' if you don't get it back in there and finish sewing up that sleeve!" Harley quickly dried her hands and went into the bedroom.
She picked up her needle and thread and quietly sat on the edge of the bed, the coat across her lap. Harley knew that he had a rough night tonight. He would sometimes have a few men on his team who weren't always the brightest crayons in the box, but she knew better than to tell him that because she also knew that he would take care of his mistakes either with a bullet or a knife. She put on her glasses to get a better look at her work and smoothed out the deep purple fabric of his coat sleeve. She carefully began to repair the small rip that was just under the armpit.
After he got out of the bathtub and dried his body, he wrapped the towel around his waist and walked into the bedroom to his small dresser. Without looking at her, he asked Harley, "Where are my pajama pants? Did you do laundry today or…?" He finally raised his head and looked at her.
She sat on the edge of their bed, her beautiful legs crossed and her hair still a mess in a crude, pulled back fashion. She was gingerly biting her bottom lip as she cautiously stitched the purple sleeve with perfectly matched thread, her square-framed glasses resting on the end of her nose. Harley paused and lifted her eyes and licked her lips. "They should be in the bottom drawer, baby," she said, tenderly.
He gulped down a lump in his throat as he gazed at her, those sharp blue eyes shining over her glasses. Those glasses! They reminded him of their sessions back in Arkham Asylum. They were the first things he had noticed about her, along with her inquisitive eyes. He remembered going back to his lonely cell every night and closing his eyes as he settled onto his hard cot. The only thing that would help him fall asleep was the way his lovely doctor looked in her glasses.
An old, familiar feeling rose in the pit of his stomach as he watched her and he fumbled for his pajama pants while trying to hide the fact that he was excited at the way she looked. He had never tried to hide that from her before, but tonight was different.
When he had pulled on his pants, he knelt in front of her and looked at her face while she worked. She didn't raise her eyes to him while she brought the needle in and out the fabric of the sleeve, and she meant to keep her eyes on her project. Harley knew he was testing her as he did this every few weeks, just so he could see if he still had the upper hand. She giggled on the inside as she thought this. Most girls would be against their man thinking he had the upper hand, but she didn't mind. Sure, she was a classified nut case to the State, but in the humble home they had made together, she was happy to play housewife to him. It gave her a sense of accomplishment to know that she could make him happy when she was by his side during a job and when she was at his feet when he came home from a long day. She knew she could make him happy and she wanted to keep it that way because it was the only way that she could keep herself happy.
"There," she whispered after she bit the thread from the finished end of the stitch. She smoothed out the fabric for him as he moved closer to her side and wrapped his long arm around her hips. "Finished. Knew it wouldn't take too long. Better, Puddin'?" she asked him as he lazily put his cheek on her arm.
The Joker sighed as he tried to shake off the relaxed feeling that he had gotten from his bath. He picked up his coat and walked over to the hanger he kept by his dresser. He examined her work and then placed it in its spot on the wall, and he grinned at her as he turned and said, "Perfect as always, baby doll."
The satisfied smile she gave him made the excited feeling return to him, making him annoyed with himself. He shook his head briskly and suddenly commanded, in a deeper tone, "Take off those glasses."
Harley's smile disappeared, but she quickly obeyed him and spread her body across the bed to put her glasses on her bedside table. When she lifted her body again, her cheek came into contact with the back of The Joker's hand, making her squeal in surprise and making her neck turn sharply. She took a deep breath and gripped the comforter momentarily before lifting herself back up to face him. He let the palm of his hand land even harder on her other cheek and smirked as the resounding crack echoed around the bed. Harley's face began to throb, but she sat up on the edge of the bed and looked into his eyes as he raised his hand again.
The Joker's smirk left his face as he stared back at the petite figure bracing itself for another hit. Not a tinge of fear was seen in her expression and her eyes – god dammit, her eyes – were piercing into his again. Those compassionate, forgiving eyes of hers that showered nothing but love on him even after all the bruises and cuts he left on her. Sometimes he couldn't stand to look at them, but they always drew him closer to her, not just to her body but…to her!
Why did she do this to him? He had never met a woman that was worth his precious time yet here he was with this passionate being that clung to his every word and catered to his every need. Every day and every night, they slept in the same bed, ate at the same table, and laughed at the same jokes. What made her so different from all the other women he had ever come into contact with? Every woman that he had been with who were nothing but easy pieces of meat that he could just toss aside without having to worry about them for the rest of his life?
But this woman in front of him…for two years they had lived together and made love almost every night in the home they made together. What the hell was so different about her?!
"Puddin'?" came her kind voice. "What's wrong?"
What's wrong? he thought. I want to hurt you but I can't. That's what's wrong!
"You look very tired."
Yeah, he said to himself. That's gotta be why I'm so confused. This was a long night.
"You want one of my famous neck rubs? I know how much you love those."
That isn't all I love, Harley, he admitted inwardly. What is it about you? Why do I hurt you when you love me so much? Why do I have to feel remorse after I hit you? Why do I feel like this?
"Dammit, Harley!" The Joker shouted as he brought his raised hand back to his side, clenching his fist and grinding his molars. He pivoted on his heel and stomped into the bathroom and slammed the door behind him, leaving Harley confused as she sat with her feet dangling off the edge of the bed.
"What's the matter, baby?" she shouted at the door from her position on the bed. "Would you like for me to fix you a drink?"
The Joker's frustrated growl reverberated through the bathroom door, making Harley bite her lip to keep from giggling.
He put his elbows on the bathroom counter and put his fingers in his curly hair as he grimaced. Why couldn't he feel satisfied after hurting her anymore? What was happening? Could it be that he actually loved her?
"No!" he shouted to himself.
"No drink, Pud? Or no neck rub?" he heard Harley's sweet voice ask him through the door.
He growled again and thought that he could hear her muffled giggling in the bedroom. "Go ahead," he mumbled to his reflection as he stared into his tired eyes. "Laugh it up, little girl. You know what you do to me, don't you? Why you…! Of all the thick-headed women in the world, I end up with…the most beautiful, most breathtaking…gahh!"
He lifted himself up and threw open the bathroom door and was greeted by a serene Harley innocently looking at his tired body and tolerating his irritable demeanor. He walked to her and knelt in front of her as he grabbed her arms roughly. "Harley…I…god dammit!" He hung his head and put his face in her lap and sighed.
He was too tired and too bewildered to continue berating this fragile creature in his hands. He felt helpless in his exhaustion. He wanted to do all sorts of things to her at that moment; hit, punch, kick, slice open, choke, rip apart just to prove to her that she had no power over the same emotions he had been able to control before he had ever met her that fateful day in Arkham.
Suddenly, he felt a soft flutter of fingers slowly running themselves through his hair and nails lightly scratching the back of his neck, giving him goose bumps. "It's okay, Daddy," a delicate voice sighed to him. Harley's lips were barely touching the very tops of his ears as he took deep breaths in her lap. "We don't have to do all that. Let's just go to bed. You need your rest; you're gonna be really busy tomorrow."
The Joker lifted his tired head and looked into her eyes, the same eyes that smiled at him everyday no matter what he did. He closed his eyes as Harley's small thumb slowly swept along the scar on his left cheek. He smirked. "You know I can't feel that, baby girl."
Harley smiled. "I know…but I can."
He smiled back at her and then climbed into bed. He rolled onto his stomach and put his arms under his pillow and turned his head to Harley's spot beside him. He heard her turn off the light in the bathroom and watched her set the alarm clock for early morning. Harley took off her red shorts, climbed in bed beside him and turned off her bedside lamp. "Good night, Puddin'," she whispered.
"Good night, Harley," he muttered back and slowly shut his eyes. He opened them a minute later and whispered, "Harl?"
"Mm hmm?" she replied.
"I know you offered a neck rub, but…will you just scratch my back instead?"
Harley opened her eyes and grinned as she moved closer to him. "Of course." Her fingernails started on his neck just under his hairline and slowly traveled down the middle of his back, making him moan softly. She made her way up and down his shoulders and down his sides and she could feel his skin crawl underneath her touch. He sighed as he brought an arm from underneath his pillow and placed it around Harley, pulling her closer and making her giggle.
No sooner had he pulled her across the bed that his neck went POP.
"Ahhh, fuck," he cursed into his pillow.
"Oh, I heard that, Daddy," Harley said.
"I felt it," he quipped. "Is that offer still open?"
Harley laughed as she gently straddled his hips and began to massage his neck and shoulders. "It's always open, Puddin'."