A/N: On the "Ask the Squishykins" tumblr, Twinings and I recently offered ourselves up for two full weeks of filling fic prompts for our readers, varying in length from a hundred to a thousand-plus words. The project has been dubbed the Free For All Fic For All—or FFAFFA for short. This is one of those stories—and this is the boilerplate author's note you'll see on all of 'em.
Prompt: Scarecrow attends Harvey Dent's high school reunion; Poison Ivy at a second chance prom; Tweedledee and Tweedledum doing anything
Notes: I started writing this for the fist round of the FFAFFA in March, intending to fill the Harley/Ivy pairing prompt. Instead, it became…um…this. I tried to stop it, really I did, but it decided what it wanted to be without my permission.
The car stalled somewhere on the outskirts of some little Podunk town in Jersey, giving one last anemic wheeze before it gave up the ghost and rolled to a stop. Harley hopped out from behind the wheel and gave the front tire a kick, "No good hunk'a junk!" only to be grabbed by the collar by Poison Ivy and dragged off down the road.
"The cops are still on our tail, Harl, now is not the time for temper tantrums." Ivy hurled a few seeds over her shoulder and they landed, taking root on either side of the road. In seconds, thick, meaty plants erupted from the ground, twisting the blacktop up into an incomprehensible spiral that would take several thousand tax payer dollars to repair. "That should keep them busy."
"What're we gonna do, Red?" Harley asked.
"Improvise. Look." Harley followed where her friend's finger was pointing—the sign for the Hotel Safari, which read "Welcome Second Chance Prom/George Washington High Reunion!"
Ivy veered off course, away from the hotel and stripped off her gloves, letting them fall without breaking stride. Harley did the same, tossing her mask and jester's cowl aside.
They cut across a set of railroad tracks, then beat a path through back alleys and abandoned streets, leaving a trail of incriminating garments behind them.
Harley smashed the front window of the first thrift store they crossed paths with, and they ducked inside just long enough to grab new shoes and a couple of dresses. Harley selected a bubble shaped pink monstrosity, Ivy a more subdued form fitting, off-the-shoulder navy blue frock.
Then, they doubled back. If luck was on their side, the police would try and follow the logical trajectory of the path of their discarded costumes rather than turning around.
Outside the hotel, they nabbed two women about their age who had arrived together and were smoking, knocked them out and stole their purses.
"Red lipstick and a pink dress," Harley muttered as they entered the hotel, rifling through the little silver clutch she'd stolen. "Ewww."
Under other circumstances, Ivy might have pointed out that the woman whose purse she'd snatched had no way of knowing what color dress her mugger would be wearing, but she didn't bother. With Harley close by her side, she skulked through the lobby, smiling disarmingly at everyone they passed, until they reached the entrance to the ballroom. "C'mon, Harl, let's mingle."
They were stopped by a man in his late twenties, who was nervously pushing his glasses up his nose. "Hey, ain't you—"
"No, we ain't!" Harley shoved him aside and looped her arm through Ivy's, striding into the grand ballroom that…wasn't so very grand after all. The low blue-green-ish lighting did the room a lot of favors, but nobody would be mistaking it for Cinderella's palace anytime soon. Not that such a thing kept Harley from being impressed."Ooh! Hors d'oeuvres!"
And just like that, Harley was gone to the refreshment table to gobble down cheese and crackers by the handful.
Though Ivy didn't begrudge Harley a free meal, she sighed heavily. Yes, technically it was better to split up and move amongst the crowd, but there was no telling what trouble Harley would get into with a gallon of rum punch in her, and Harley had a tendency to get into conspicuous trouble.
Ivy smoothed her skirt and drifted along the edge of the dance floor, pretending to know this person and that person and oh-it's-been-so-long and how's-the-wife-and-kids, maneuvering closer and closer to the bandstand. It was situated near the emergency exit, as well as the fire alarm and just seemed like a good place to be near, just in case.
"Fancy a dance?" A hand closed around her wrist and Ivy spun on her heel, trying very hard to remember not to punch whoever had grabbed her.
Jonathan Crane was not what she was expecting to find on the other end of her arm.
"You!" she hissed angrily, her voice just loud enough for him to hear but not so loud that it disturbed anyone else. "What are you—"
He swept her into his arms with a surprising amount of grace, eyes burning with intensity that sprang from barely contained fury. "I could ask you the same."
At first, Ivy fought his embrace, but after someone else on the dance floor eyed them suspiciously, she fell into step with his somewhat clumsy tango. She did her best to make a good show of it, at least. "I don't owe you any explanations, you overgrown sack of straw."
"I had plans for this…gathering," he spat, spinning her away from him and then back into his arms, "Now I can only guess that the police will be breaking down the door looking for you before I get the chance to follow through."
Ivy's eyelids dropped to half mast and she said through gritted teeth, "Who do you think I am, you?
He yanked her so close that their bodies nearly touched, their torsos remaining stiff with tension. "Am I so wrong?"
"No one knows I'm here." He dipped her with a surprising lack of awkwardness. "I'm not sloppy."
"Then I suppose it's not your dippy little sidekick doing handstands by the punchbowl?"
Ivy twirled in Crane's arms until her back was to him, searching for Harley. There she was on her hands, taffeta skirt up around her head, her red and white polka dot panties on display for the entire room to see, talking through her skirt about having been a cheerleader. "Harley!"
Roughly, Crane turned her around to face him, pulling her back into step. "Do you really want to draw attention to yourself—the voluptuous redhead with green lipstick—in conjunction with the athletic blonde? And me?"
She tasted blood, she bit her tongue so hard. Ivy changed the subject. "What are you doing here?"
His thigh slid between hers as he led her into a figure eight, never taking his fiery eyes off hers. "I received an invitation."
"To a prom?" She threw her head back and laughed at him, a vicious edge to the sound as she scored the back of his neck with her nails.
"To a high school reunion," he growled. "Someone delivered the missive to what they thought was Harvey Dent's last known address."
The laughter bubbled up from her chest, beautifully spiteful. "And you decided to do good old Harv a solid, is that it? Let his old friends think he'd gained a few inches and lost fifty pounds?"
"I thought I might finish off the last of his bullies," he said snidely, "if you must know."
"Why Professor Crane," she smirked cruelly, swinging her leg up to wrap around his hip, "I didn't know you had it in you."
"Yes, my track record certainly wouldn't tip anyone off in that regard." He swept her across the floor smoothly but not at all gently. "I absolutely do not have a habit of slaughtering bullies when presented with the opportunity. That must be the Ventriloquist."
From the corner of her eye, Ivy saw a pink flouncy blob wobble-bouncing across the floor toward her. Crane spun her out again just in time to come face to face with Harley.
"Red!" she squeak-slurred—she'd obviously been packing away the long island iced teas— "There's gonna be a drag race with the—"
Ivy and Crane stopped dancing immediately, both panting and sweating from the exertion.
Harley's eyes seemed to finally catch up with her mouth and she gasped noisily. Her mouth dropped open so far Ivy could inspect her tonsils if she wanted. "Omigd! Professor Crane! What're you doin—and yer dancing with—and Red! And you and he and are you going to—"
Harley babbled and sputtered in shock for a few seconds, pointing and spinning her arms like a pinwheel, drawing undue attention to the three of them. It didn't matter much, though; after a few seconds, the double doors to the ballroom blew open in a burst of machine gun fire.
Tweedledee and Tweedledum had arrived.
Why had they arrived? Nobody seemed to know. Or at least, nobody who knew spoke up. A few people hid under the buffet table in what could have been deemed a guilty fashion, but the rest scattered, heading straight for the fire exits in a screaming panicked stampede. Harley, Ivy and the Scarecrow were nearly trampled, but they miraculously made it out of the hotel ballroom unscathed.
It was such a beautiful unintentional escape that it was a real shame when the police caught them in the parking lot and carted them off to Arkham.
While Harley was recovering from the mother of all hangovers, Ivy made sure to deny everything with such sincerity that Harley eventually believed somebody had slipped her a roofie and she'd hallucinated most of that night.
Poison Ivy and the Scarecrow, meanwhile, never spoke of that night to anyone—especially not to each other.
And if either of them enjoyed that tango, they certainly never said anything.