Disclaimer: I don't own Buffy or Batman. Buffy and related characters belong to Whedon. Batman and related characters belong to DC Comics and WB.

Originally for TwistedShorts August Fic-a-Day Challenge (Day 24)

A/N: This is set after "Keys and Clowns," this is set post Season 7 for Buffy, comics disregarded save for a few ideas here and there. There's not a specific setting for Batman. Hope you like it!

Easier Said

"Hello, Dawnie," he said, causing Dawn's body to go rigid from shock.

She had to be hearing things. This couldn't be real. Spike had said that the Joker had been taken care of, that he wouldn't bother her again. Spike had promised her. But that voice full of mocking and sinister glee was unmistakable. She turned, pressing her doctor coat-covered back against the table.

Joker was dressed in his usual purple suit, with the additions of a matching trenchcoat and hat. He chuckled low, taking another quiet step into the room. Dawn pressed even harder up against the table.

"No," she said. "You can't be here. You can't."

"Oh?" he laughed, removing his hat. "Then you must be seeing things. You know, you should see someone about your hallucinations."

Dawn shook her head, edging her way along the table. She was in a building full of people—the mental institution she had transferred to in her home state of California. She swallowed hard, launching herself toward the break room's door. Of course, Joker side-stepped, catching her by the shoulders and throwing her back.

"I wouldn't try that again, if I were you," he growled.

Dawn felt hot tears well up in her eyes. "Spike said that he had made sure."

Joker laughed, locking the solid door behind him. None of the workers would check. This room was notorious for work inappropriate rendezvous. And even the higher ups in the asylum seemed to followed the "if this room's rockin'" rule. She was trapped.

"That would be the blond vampire guy, right? You know, he almost killed me. Probably would've had the Bat not stopped him," Joker laughed. "Sure, I promised I'd stay away from you… but I never said for how long. Some of my lackeys 'round these parts let me know that Mr. Blond and Fangy had moved on from you, leaving you all on your lonesome."

Dawn pulled a chair out from underneath one of the round tables, holding it in front of herself, as if expecting a lion to charge at her.

"I'm not worth this," she said, and the words felt sour on her tongue. "You could be spending this time getting him, getting Batman."

"Wow. I haven't had someone try to use that psychological crap on me in a very, very long time. I mean, even my own doctors have given it up."

Dawn's heart and stomach sank. That was all she had; her only ploy. And he'd seen through it like glass. One of her tears escaped, and she shook her head.

"So what now? You gonna kill me? Go ahead. And make sure they know it's you, Joker, because I have a lot of friends who'll come gunning for you."

Joker let out one of his loud cackles, and Dawn jumped. How could no one be hearing this? Why wasn't anyone coming to help her? What had he done to the rest of the workers? Her thoughts on the matter were growing increasingly dark, so she pushed them to the side. It wasn't like she didn't have enough problems at the moment.

"You think I'd come all the way to sunny California just to kill little ol' you?" Joker asked, sidling closer to her.

"Yes," Dawn breathed without hesitation.

This was greeted with a single, pronounced "ha!" and an acknowledging nod of the head.

"True. But that's not the case today."

He was directly in front of her now, less than an arm's length away. In a flash, he grasped her shoulders, throwing her down onto the table. A plastic fork added insult to injury as its stinging prick went right along with the dull pain that was spreading all up and down her shoulders and back. He leapt atop the table, straddling her, and Dawn had a brief moment where she marveled at the construction of the table—it didn't even wiggle with all the weight on it.

"Get off me," she growled, trying her best to fight him. "Get off!"

"Ssh, ssh, ssh," he laughed, bringing his face down to hers. "I know that 'no' means 'no.' But… are you so sure that you want to say no?"

She could feel his hot breath in her ear as he brushed his crimson lips against her cheek, gently pressing the side of his cheek against hers.

"Tell me you don't want this," he whispered.

A pleasurable shiver trailed down Dawn's back as she turned her face away.

"So that's it? You've come across the country just for a little nookie? What's the matter, Harley not putting out?"

He slapped her, hard enough that the sting lasted far longer than the connection of hand-to-face did. She grinned bitterly up at him, pressing her advantage no matter how reckless it was.

"I thought so. Seems like such an awful long trip just to get some. What, haven't you ever heard of taking matters into your own hands? I thought that that was the way you liked to do things."

"Shut… up," he said, his hands finding her throat.

"Just do it," she choked. "You know you want to. You have me trapped."

He scoffed, getting off the table. "Not my style, kiddo."

Her stomach twisted as he put his back to her, straightening the lapels of his jacket. Was she actually disappointed he hadn't taken her? She propped herself up on her elbows, quickly removing that damn fork from under her.

"That's it? You're leaving?"

He spared her a glance over his shoulder. "Why not? Obviously you're not interested anymore. And since oh so many people would, hehe, 'come gunning for' me, I'm not going to bother killing you."

She blinked. She was a psychiatrist. She knew reverse psychology when she saw it, and this was the plainest case of it she had ever seen—and she grew up with an older sibling.

"Wait," she said.

He turned, having not moved since getting off the table.

"Don't go," she said.

His smile widened, and she knew she had to be crazy. She knew that he was dangerous, likely to kill her at any moment. But…

His lips were on her in a moment, and her hands searched his body hungrily, removing his trenchcoat to fall to the floor. He was moving down her body, shoving her skirt up, when the handle of the door began to shake. He turned, his eyes narrowed in a glare. His hand was reaching into his jacket pocket for God knew what, but Dawn rested a hand on his arm, stopping him.

"Occupied," she called.

"Oh!" called a young woman's voice on the other side. "Sorry!"

They listened for just a moment as the sound of heels on the floor clicked away. Joker chuckled.

"Fun workplace you have here, Dawnie."

She laughed, nibbling on his ear. "Isn't it, though?"

End Notes: I hope everyone enjoyed this. There's another one that follows this one that goes by the title of "Drowning in Him." I'll be posting it here soon. Please review!