The Other Side
by Te
November 8, 2003

Disclaimers: Not mine.

Ratings Note: R.

Epilogue to "Reflections." Read that first.


Batman stares at himself for a long, quiet time.

His hair is mussed, and the uniform has seen better days. He's slumped in
the restraints like a dead man.

And then he looks up, *wakes* up the way he always does, the way he
probably always will: at once, and all over.

And he smiles.

"Did you fuck him yet?"

"No." There's no reason to lie.

"Mm. You will. He tastes..." Slower, lazier smile.

"I won't kill you."

A flicker in the eyes. One that no one else would see. Perhaps. "I'll get out
of here one day, Batman."

"It's possible."

"Inevitable. And... you don't really think I'll let *you* have him, do you?"

He can't keep from smiling. "'Let' is an interesting choice of words."

"This isn't about Mom and Dad, anymore, Batman. You're out of your

"*Everything* is about Mom and Dad. You might have forgotten, but
I haven't."

Dreamy sigh. "You're so young..."

"And you've lost."

Another smile. "I like them young. We both do. I've never been much
for narcissism, but..." He looks him up and down with slow, purposeful

Batman snorts, but he can feel the prickle of heat on the back of his
neck. Where a hand would go.

"And you feel it."

"It won't happen."

"I'm a healthy man in my prime, Batman. Never is a long time."

"I won't kill you."

"You said that already."

"Some people need to have certain concepts --"

Flicker, flicker, and he can see him thinking. See it happen and can't
stop it. "I'll tell you what happened."

Batman pauses, regroups. "I don't need to know what happened
to you, Bruce. Amazingly? I can guess."

"I'll tell you what happened to *them*. What will happen. Unless..."

And he doesn't look at the wall, the one where the cases will go. He
doesn't have to. He breathes.

"I want to die." Simple, and matter-of-fact.

"The Joker toxin..."

"... kills most people within an hour of exposure --"

"-- unless the antidote is supplied. You'll last --"

"Two. Perhaps."

Batman closes his eyes. Breathes. Nods.

And Batman.

Dies with a smile.


.On to Familiarity.