Disclaimer: I can't think of a clever disclaimer, so rather than make an ordinary one think I'll just claim Batman as my own and hide under a rock from the lawyers. Or something.

Author's Note: Wrote this I don't know how long ago, then tweaked it slightly before posting. Been utterly buried in work of late. Just wanna say I appreciate you guys a TON (hearing in never fails to make me all giddy and excited), so thanks and sorry I've been so bad about replying to reviews. You're seriously beyond awesome and I hope this makes for an interesting read. :-)


Jonathan stares at his television screen and imagines how it all played out. She must have fallen like a meteor, eaten up by the atmosphere so that her body's hardly recognizable now. He sees her surrounded by shards of glass from two stories up. He sees her—bloodstained face vivid as a church window. He sees her, and feels his own breath stop. Hitch. Inhale. Waver. Die.

They don't declare her dead or use a proper name. They can't decide what exactly Harleen Quinzel fell victim to. He watches, cannot blink, cannot comprehend. He grips the arm of his couch as if it might anchor him from the depths of not this time. Not her. The devil with starlight in her hair and a smile he can't stand. Dream, demon, her own.

And the revelation hits him too late, alone in an apartment that could be anyone's while news anchors change subjects to sports or weather. It never mattered what he was to her. His unobtainable queen of spades, empty secret-keeper.

She had such a beautiful laugh.