Disclaimer: I do not own the Kuni no Alice series or its characters. They all belong to the lovely Quinrose.
Black and White
Every man has two halves to his being; he is not one person so much as two persons trying to act in unison. I believe that in the heart of each human being there is something which I can only describe as a "child of darkness" who is equal and complementary to the more obvious "child of light."
If one were to ask if sharing a body was a pain, Black Joker would not deny it, but he would say sharing a body with White Joker bearable though.
They rarely fought and lived in the body quite peacefully. White would mostly take charge of the circus while Black mainly controlled the prison.
He never complained about the arrangement, and overall, found himself quite pleased with it. Black only enjoyed with dealing with those involved in his favorite hobbies – capturing and imprisoning those who broke the rules. He savored what little contact he had with people, grateful that White didn't mind him staying in mask form.
Black dreaded those rare times when they had to switch places – whether it was to appear in the flesh for only the heavens know why, or, as in this case, when White wanted to be in the prison for a little while.
"God damn that idiotic clown," Black growled irately under his breath. His whip tapped against the black fabric of his arm, forming a quick, annoyed staccato.
The circus around him was animate and bursting with life. Noise and miscellaneous chatter resonated from all around him. The circus nearly teemed with blinding colors and various equipment.
He did not understand how White tolerated something this maddening. His eyes felt as if they were burning. Blood surged into his skull, the incessant pounding growing more and more pronounced.
This was one reason why he loved staying in his prison. He relished the quiet serenity, the occasional clatter of metal, and the cold darkness of the penitentiary.
Here? He could barely hear himself think.
'So friggin' annoying,' Black Joker scowled. His red orb narrowed into a leer, sending fear into the hearts of two employees.
"What the hell are you two looking at?" he said with a slight growl. The whip cracked against his hand. "Stop gawking at me like the insignificant insects you are and get the hell back to work!"
The two faceless clowns jumped in fright, scrambling back to their posts.
Joker crossed his arms apathetically over his chest, repressing the urgent need to lash his ire out on a few other employees gawking at him. This happened every time he was in charge of the circus. Did it really matter he was there in place of their other superior? Did it matter he didn't want to change out of his prison uniform? That did not give anyone the prerogative to place him under such close scrutiny.
Black Joker cast his gaze around the tent and strolled forward. Many of the circus employees hurried passed him; some quickly dropped their gazes and avoided eye contact. Black knew everyone feared him and found his presence intimidating. He did not waste his precious time on niceties and pleasantries like White. He was not one many would deem as 'nice' anyway. He didn't give a damn that he instilled an irrevocable fear into their poor souls. He gladly welcomed the distance.
The circus was a total bore in his eyes. There was nothing in this tent that could capture his attention.
…except one case.
He skidded to a halt, languidly raising his gaze to the high wire. A petite figure stood atop the tiny wooden platform. Black and white gloved hands were crossed over the soft brocade over her chest. White dust sparkled gently underneath the fluorescence, casting a phantasmal glow over her black and white striped costume.
'The new girl…' Black advanced to get a closer look.
He remembered when White had first brought her to the circus. She was nothing more than a reticent, faceless shell, completely despondent and silent. After White put her to work as the newest funambulist, Black had found himself rendered into a quiet awe. It was incredible how easily she walked up the wire, performing death-defying stunts that always made their audience swoon and scream.
And all without a safety net.
Watching her act was the only portion of the show that captured his attention, forcing him to watch it through its entirety.
She took a dainty step on the rope. A red brow arched as he watched her wobble forward, struggling to retain her balance.
'How odd… never seen her like this even in her other practice sessions…'
He continued watching in perplexed curiosity as the girl teetered violently on the shaking rope. She finally lost her bearings, descended down towards the floor… and landed conveniently into Black Joker's arms.
"J… J… Joker-sama!" the girl stuttered violently, a pink flush painting her pale cheeks as she stared into the warden's stolid face. "Th… thank you so much. I don't know what I would have…"
Her words were clipped by a surprised gasp when she was released onto the floor.
"What the friggin' hell was that crap? I've never seen you that careless before! Do you want to die?" shouted Black Joker harshly, his voice making the poor girl cringe and wither in shame.
She nervously wrapped her arms around her legs, dropping her eye-less gaze to the floor. "W… well… it's just I've n… never seen you in person before. Black Joker-sama is u… usually in mask form, and I g… got ner… nervous."
"But that is no excuse! White and I have the same damn face!" Joker rebuked. The young funambulist winced once more, burying her head between her knees as she awaited further reprimand. "…So stop being nervous. You've done this a thousand times, and my presence shouldn't affect your performance. Go and do it again."
The young girl snapped her head towards the Joker. His expression was still firm and stiff, but she swore his visage soften ever so slightly, his lips relaxed from its customary scowl.
She perked up and gracefully jumped to her feet. "Thanks so much, Joker-sama! I shall!"
Black Joker shrugged his shoulders and sighed, watching her dash forward, scale the long ladder, and begin crossing the rope again. He felt a satisfied smile tug at the corners of his lips. 'Much better.'
Her gaze descended down on his person for a singular moment. She stumbled slightly and quickly regained her composure, concentrating her attention on the rope.
'Damn... that again? Why did she stumble? Why is her face so red?' A sigh escaped the clown's lips, unable to understand the strange girl and dismissed those question from his mind.
"You're crazy! Really? Him? Of all people?"
Joker turned his attention towards the hushed voices, tuning his ears towards the direction of their conversation.
"I'm serious. Have you seen him? The prison warden is getting soft."
A whip cracked against the speaker's skull. The clown employee crumbled down to the ground, gingerly touching a steady stream of blood rolling down his cheek.
"What the friggin' hell did you say, you faceless bastard? Get this through your thick head. There is no freaking way I'm getting soft! I'm sorry if I want this crappy excuse of a show to be actually good!" The two faceless clowns blanched, rendered speechless as several other profanities flew from Joker's enraged lips. Once Joker was done verbally lashing them to a stupor, the two clowns ran off and rushed to blessed safety.
The prison warden released an annoyed breath, mumbling once more of his inconceivable hatred for the circus.
His gaze lifted upwards. She was now executing her first stunt. One hand firmly grasped onto the thin wire, gracefully lifting her both legs into the air as she retained her balance.
It was always a sight to behold. She nearly exuded confidence, her face deep in intense concentration, her body bending in graceful and elegant shapes...
Joker released a sharp breath, turned on his heels, and began to walk away.
Though he was supposed to be considered as the Black Joker, the darker and scarier one, perhaps there's more depth to him than what meets the eye...
'Gah, what the hell am I thinking? Isn't that why I'm known as Black and he White?' He roughly shook his head of such thoughts.
If life was as simple as black and white, he would be content in his prison walls, satisfied by the general fear he instilled.
But life was far more complex then that. There were so many hues and shades in between, complicating the image he worked so hard to build up.
He couldn't stop himself from glancing up at the tightrope, watching her transition to her second stunt, trying not to pay attention to the unprecedented warmth building in his chest...
A/N Notes: (This mini story is an implied JokerOC)
I apologize if Joker is OoC. Like many people here, this is all my interpretation of his character.
And for this story, I read that Black Joker was the one to speak badly. Even though White is technically nicer, he's the actual evil one. So I was thinking if that's true, then Black musn't be that evilly psychotic (though, to me, he still is.) So I tried portraying his character in a different way... and this first part was born.
...no idea how it turned out, but it's done. Stay tuned for part two!
Thanks for reading~