A/N: The first of the many cross posts I have on LJ. I decided I wanted all my NC-17 stories in one place and all the non NC-17 Stuff in another place. So, if you want to read my really naughty stuff, LJ away. Same name and everything.
Disclaimer: I don't own Batman, and I'll tell you why that's a good thing; nothing bad would ever happen to the bad guys and all Batman would ever do is hang out with the Robbins.
Riddler/Scarecrow if you squint really hard and don't look directly at it.
Nothing graphic I'm sorry to say.
He was running. Jonathan wasn't entirely sure how he'd gotten loose – it was all a bit of a blur at this point – but he knew he was running and he knew Batman and the police were close on his tail. He also knew that the straightjacket was still wrapped tightly about his torso and yes thank you, he knew he looked ridiculous. At this point he was just praying that a news crew wouldn't show up and get pictures.
Preoccupied with his thoughts, the Scarecrow forgot to watch where exactly it was that he was running and was soon reminded of the importance of this as his foot met ice. Shit was the only thought that got through as he went skidding across what he supposed was either a really big pond or an incredibly small lake. And yes, he screamed. It didn't take long for him to loose his balance, not being able to use one's arms would do that to a person, and Jonathan soon found himself sliding across the ice on his backside. He came to a slow stop, his body turning slowly so that he was facing his pursuers. Everyone paused for a moment and stared. Jonathan stared right back. Wits somehow returning, Jonathan scrambled to his feet, or at least tried. He fell twice before the Gotham City police suddenly remembered that they were trying to catch him and returned to pursuing their escaping prisoner. Our men in blue, Jonathan thought sarcastically as he continued trying to stand, Gotham's Finest. He tried standing again and this time fell face first.
The Arkham ex-resident looked over his shoulder to see blue uniforms slipping across the ice, not too far behind. Fuck! Jonathan began to crawl on his stomach, propelling himself forward with his knees; it was surprisingly effective despite the fact that he probably looked something like a large worm. He made it to the snow bank and got to his feet, behind him an officer hit the ice hard enough to make it crack. Jonathan ran.
His running led him to the Gotham slums, not a place he was totally unfamiliar with. Finally he came to a decrepit apartment building that had definitely seen better days and somehow made it to the third floor without taking a header down the stairs. He stopped at Apartment number 42. Now to get a certain someone's attention… he kicked the door with his Arkham slipper clad foot and swore. Hearing police sirens from the street, maybe a block away and unsure if he'd been found out, Jonathan rammed the door with his shoulder and bounced off. He did it again. After a minute of this self abuse, the door opened. Edward Nygma, clad in green and purple stripped pajamas – and where the hell did one get emerald green and purple pajamas anyways? – with a gun in one hand and his cane in the other, looked out.
"Crane?" Edward blinked incredulously, Jonathan, assured by the reaction that he wasn't about to get shot, brushed past the man and entered the apartment. Despite the outward appearance of the building, Edward's apartment was pleasantly clean and actually rather cozy. The Riddler snapped the door shut and turned to face the other man who was inspecting his couch. "What are you doing here, Crane? And why are you…?" Edward gestured to the other man's wet Arkham garbs.
"I was-" Jonathan cut himself off with a violent sneeze, making Edward wince. "Escaping," he finished, sniffling. "Would you mind…?" The lanky man wiggled his arms a little.
"Oh, right, of course," Edward put his gun down and moved to stand behind the other man, quickly and efficiently undoing the straps that constrained his fellow villain. Once his arms were free Jonathan promptly covered his face and sneezed loudly. "Uh… are you alright, Crane?" Jonathan lifted his head and sniffed again. "Maybe you should get out of those wet clothes, you sit and I'll…" Edward didn't actually know what he was going to do, but his current alliance with the Scarecrow meant that he had to do something. Jonathan didn't wait for any more prompting and sat down. "What happened to you anyways?" Edward asked as he headed toward the kitchen deciding that cold men liked hot tea just as well as everyone else.
"As I said, I was escaping," Jonathan answered somewhat petulantly. Edward rolled his eyes from where he was filling a tea kettle with water and getting out the only two mugs that had survived the last time he'd had to move because Batman had found and trashed his hideout. "I fell in a snow bank and-" Jonathan sneezed again.
"Bless you," Edward responded out of habit. He found a clean towel and dropped it over the back of the couch and on to Jonathan's head before turning back to the whistling kettle. "And so you came here. Last ditch effort I suppose?" A police siren went off just within hearing distance and both men tensed, waiting, until it was out of earshot again.
"Something like that," Edward handed over one of the hot mugs of tea and Jonathan was just enough of a gentleman to thank him. Not loudly, but he thanked him none-the-less. "I don't suppose you'd be willing to put up with me for…"
"A day, maybe two," Edward finished for him, sitting on the other end of the couch, sipping at his own mug. "Can't be caught housing a fugitive, can I?" Jonathan snorted into his cup and Edward let the corner of his mouth twitch up in a slight smirk. Fugitives housing fugitives, who'd have guessed? Not Edward, who'd been sound asleep not long before Jonathan came stumbling into his building. The Riddler glanced sideways at the other man and caught Jonathan trying not to shiver and failing.
Edward quickly set his mug down on a fairly beaten up coffee table and stood. "Right right, sorry. You stay here," Jonathan gave the other man strange look as Edward bounded down the hall and out of sight. The Riddler came back with a small space heater and a bundle of clothes. The clothes he dropped on Jonathan and the space heater he plugged into the wall and turned on full blast.
The Scarecrow looked down at the bundle of clothing in his arms. A pair pajama pants and a terry-cloth robe that had seen better days. The pajama pants were black, the robe purple; Jonathan pretended not to notice. Edward finished fussing with his space heater and stood up.
"Sorry, Jonathan," Edward said after a moment. "But I'm going to have to ask you not to die of hypothermia on my couch. You can use the restroom down the hall to change," Jonathan thanked the other man quietly and went to change. When he came back the tea was a little bit cooler and the room a bit warmer. He sat and picked up his mug.
"Sorry to have woken you, Edward, but I couldn't very well continue traipsing through the city with my arms tied behind my back," Jonathan said as way of apology.
"No problem at all. I'll just consider it my good deed for the season of giving," Edward said brightly despite wanting nothing more than to return to his bed. Jonathan blinked at him and Edward remembered that the Arkham residence weren't privy to information such as the day and month. "It's Christmas eve, Jonathan," the Riddler turned in his seat to see the clock. "Christmas day in an hour and a half."
"I hadn't realized I'd been in Arkham for so long," Jonathan admitted softly. Five months. It wasn't his longest stay, but he'd rather been hoping to get out in time to cause some Christmas mayhem. Oh well, too late to worry about it now. He sipped some more of the rapidly cooling tea. Edward finished his own cup and got up. He came back with a thinning quilt.
"I hope you won't think me a poor host but…" Jonathan waved dismissively.
"It's late, go back to bed Edward."
"Alright, but when I get up I expect to find all my belongings where I left them," Edward warned, not that there was much anything for Jonathan to take but the heater and the blanket. Jonathan narrowed his eyes at the green and purple clad villain.
"What are you implying?" he asked in a soft, none-to-friendly voice. Edward decided that now would be a good time to shut up and make his escape. Edward waved over his shoulder at the other man as he disappeared down the hall.
"Good night Jonathan!" Rolling his eyes and smiling a little – though you could be certain he wasn't about to admit to it, even to himself – Jonathan settled himself down comfortably and pulled the quilt up to his chin, preparing for a long winter nap.
"Edward… Edward," something was shaking him. "Edward!" The Riddler's eyes snapped open and he grabbed whatever was shaking him. "Easy, Edward. It's me." Edward sat up and let his eyes focus. Jonathan was standing beside his bed, wrapped tightly in the quilt Edward had left with him.
"What?" Edward shivered as parts of him once under blankets met cold air, air that should have been slightly warmer than that. "Why is it so cold?"
"Your power went out," Edward narrowed his eyes at the general direction of the voice.
"What did you do?" he accused. Jonathan made a disgruntled noise and shifted.
"I didn't do anything. I woke up when the space heater shut off. When it wouldn't turn back on I tried the light. The power went out all on its lonesome; I looked out side and everything. No police and the buildings nearby are out too," Edward swore and scooted back under the blankets. There was a long pause.
"Uh…" Edward cleared his throat. "Jonathan would you… like to join me?" Intellectually they both knew that two bodies would warm a small space like a bed faster than one and keep it warmer longer. Intellectually they both know that huddling for warmth was a perfectly sensible thing to do. However, they'd both been imprisoned in normal jails enough times to be a bit… hesitant about crawling into bed with another man willingly. Jonathan didn't say anything for a long moment.
"You… don't mind?" he asked carefully. Edward scooted over to make more room on the fairly small bed. Taking the motion to be the invitation that it was, Jonathan dropped the quilt he'd wrapped around himself on top of the other blankets and crawled in next to the other man. Being the paranoid villains that they were they both turned to their sides to glare each other in the face. There was a long moment of complete silence.
"We never speak of this again," they both announced at more or less the same time. That out of the way the two pressed closer together and made themselves as comfortable as possible.
"Your feet are cold," Edward stated after a moment.
"Oh, my apologies," Jonathan started in a mocking tone. "Next time I'll be sure to make them nice and toasty before getting into bed."
"Be sure that you do," Edward snapped back. Jonathan made a growling noise at the other man.
"Shut up and go to sleep," when Edward didn't say anything else, Jonathan squirmed slightly, getting comfortable again and closed his eyes. Edward shifted to set his head more comfortably on the pillow and shut his own eyes.
Somewhere out in the cold Gotham night a clock struck one.