“I don’t care who the fuck ya are, when ya come int’ my headquarters an’ start throwin’ yer weight around like some goddamn vigilante I start t’ get pissed off an’ I resist doin’ what you say. Doesn’t help I already hate yer fuckin’ guts.” He raised the pistol again, his finger twitching against the trigger as he glared across his desk. “Now get t’ the goddamn point before I lose my patience.”
His scowl only deepened as the Joker took just about as long as he could to lay out what he wanted, and as always Harvey was beginning to develop a dull throbbing behind his eyes that indicated the Joker was beginning to grate on his nerves. His good eye drifted shut as his jaw tightened, reining in his anger once again. Of all people in the world, Joker brought out the very worst in Harvey Dent. And then he finally mentioned the blueprints, the thing that Harvey considered his greatest prize to date while stuck in this hellhole, and all of a sudden his bad mood lifted.
His eye fluttered open slowly and his brow raised slowly towards his hairline as the clown continued to speak, laying out his demands for the plans and any copies Harvey might have lying around, as well as Dent’s favorite chair. And for once, the mob boss burst out laughing, nearly doubling over in his chair and the weapon dipping downward towards the floor. “Ya know, for once ya actually told a really funny joke, J. I think it’s hilarious that ya think I’m gonna do any a that for ya.”
Harvey pushed himself out of the chair, shaking his head and still laughing, turning his back to the other man and crossing toward the door to his office. He pushed the door closed and tore the knife from the wood, flipping it upward in the air in an arc before catching it again, his eye glistening with tears. “The copies a that map? I got ‘em hidden real good. An’ the boys watchin’ over ‘em got standin’ orders - if they don’t hear from me every few hours, they’re supposed t’ give a copy t’ each a the other Rogues in town. Cobblepot might not particularly care, but I’m pretty sure Freeze has a bone t’ pick with you.”
The Joker leaned back and pressed the tips of his gloved fingers together, pursing red tinted lips with eyebrows raised. So little Harvey Dent wanted to play dirty. It was all in good fun, right? Why not play dirty too. “I’m impressed, Dent. Who came up with that idea? Two Face or the ex District Attorney? Wouldn’t want to give credit to the wrong person.”
Slowly, a smile etched it’s way across his lips. His eyes were dancing with shameless excitement. “Got ‘em secured tightly, you do? Ah, so it all boils down to whether or not your boys hear from their ol’ boss? And that,” he paused, chuckling while continuing, “if they don’t hear from you, they’ll hand out copies to the zoo animal and the lump of ice?”
His laughter got louder, and he stood up from the chair. His palms hit the table and he leaned on it, still cackling ‘ha ha ah ah ooh wee’s’ and looking at Harvey from across the room.
“You really must be a lonely soul. First you sought to help out a helpess girl, and how did that go in the end? Nevermind that. And then, just to make sure your ah, what is it? Your only semi-secret access’ to Amusement Mile stay in your possession, you have to check in with your henchmen every couple of hours! Harvey. I was so sure you would know all about keeping your business life and your love life seperate!”
“Tell me. Do you have someone to go home to when the day is done? Or are your only friends the people who you try to serve ‘Justice’ to on a daily basis? Surely not. Sure, you’re not that much of a looker, but if ya can make a girl laugh, you can make her do anything!”
He drummed his fingers on the desk. “If you won’t give me back my copies, then what can I do about it? I’m sorry I’ve wasted hours upon hours of your time. Oh, has it really been hours? Oh no! You haven’t contacted your little teams and told them you were okay and that you were gonna be home for dinner, have you? No?”
“Whatta’ shame. I bet Cobblepot and Freeze are gonna be very confused when your men, who were given the orders from boys higher up on the chain to protect the ‘actual’ (and by actual I mean the layout of the CourtHouse but with Amusement Mile written at the top and ‘Just kidding, it’s actually to Soloman Wayne CH scrawled underneath that) maps of Amusement Mile, deliver the layouts of your place to them. But who knows, I mean it could’ve happened to anybody!”
His jaw tightened and he ground his teeth raising the gun to point a bit closer to Joker’s head. “Quit fuckin’ tellin’ me what t’ do in my own goddamn office!” It was everything he could do to rein in his anger at this point and not just pull the trigger - though he wondered why he was even bothering anyway. No one would be upset with him for taking out the Joker, especially not now that they were locked away in this damned city. Besides Cobblepot, the Joker was Harvey’s only real competition for territory and men. They’d been discussing an alliance of sorts for awhile now, and all during that time Harley had been feeding information to Two Face and his men, all supposedly under the clown’s nose. That had been foolish, assuming that was true.
Still, he had really thought he could help Harley out this time - in fact, he’d set up a room for her in the main apartment complex for his territory and had fully intended on making her one of his generals in his gang. She was trustworthy, after all, at least to an extent, and she knew her shit. It was annoying that her life had been wasted so thoroughly by the clown. And he knew that Joker was right, she had continually returned to him, but Harvey also knew that she was messed up in the head. She couldn’t help herself half the time because she had been conditioned to needing the Joker. Him claiming he had nothing to do with it was complete and utter horse shit.
Letting out a sigh, Harvey finally settled back into one of the two chairs in front of his desk. He lowered the pistol, though didn’t put it away - instead it remained tightly in his hand, ready to fire if need be. “Okay. I did what ya asked, J. Now what the fuck do you want?”
The smile spread instantly back on the Joker’s face. Leaning forward, and looking at the criminal from under his brow, he began to speak in a condescending matter. “Now, that didn’t kill ya did it? And after all this time it took for me to tell you to sit. We could’ve been done by now!” The thought made the clown laugh with spite, knowing that it was going to be a very long night for the both of them indeed.
“You have some things that belongs to me. I simply want them back.”
Keeping his eyes focused on Two Face as he gave an exaggerated shrug and turned the corners of his lips down in a ‘that’s-it’ kinda way. “Let’s see,” he mused, flicking his knife open and uncurling his fist, bringing his hand up to the blade. He could feel the cool of the metal on his fingertips through the leather of his gloves. He pushed his feet on the edge of the desk, making the chair rock slightly from side to side.
“For starters, my ah, pocket knife that’s halfway lodged in your door.” His index finger raised, and he made a sweeping motion in the air that mimicked checking something off a list. “Sorry about that by the way!” He leaned back comfortably in the chair clearing his throat, he continued. “Also, it’s been ah, brought to my attention that before Harley had suffered her untimely death, the little minx had been copying down the blueprints to our little hideout on Amusement Mile! She was never very good at covering her tracks, always wanting to cause a scene, that one.” He leaned forward his hands now clasping and resting on his stomach. “Most of our little secret ways in the place were shown on the damned layout of the area. But there are a few, not even she knew about.” His eyes twinkled with mischievous delight as he looked at the figure in the chair across from him. The smile on his face edging into more of a toothy grin. “I wonder who she would have been copying it down for? Oh, I think I know! Pick me, pick me!” His nose crinkled with short lived laughter. “I’ve no doubt, however, that you’ve made copies of said map. Yet none that were in this desk, I see. Of course not. They’re probably hidden in your mattress. But where would the original be? Why, do you happen to have it on you?”
The Joker inquired curiously, his voice raising in pitch on the last few words. A thought sparked in him, a last second addition to his demands.
“Oh yeah!” He stroked the arms of the chair. “I also want this chair. It’s just so comfy, Dent! A guy could get used to a piece of furniture like this. The wrong color, though. Black is too gloomy. Maybe some paint, purple I’m thinking, and it would fit right back in at my place!”
It was hard not to just pull the trigger and make Joker shut up for good. He’d be doing everyone in Gotham City a favor if he did it, after all - and when Batman was done knocking him around and tossing him in… wait a second, he was already in Arkham City, and the Bat had no jurisdiction here at all. The rules had been changed entirely, and everything had turned into dog-eat-dog in this place, hadn’t it? Hell, he’d come up with half the rules himself, most of which basically said he had to shoot Joker right now anyway. And yet…
Killing Harley Quinn had been a step too far. She was messed up in the head, yeah, had done a lot of stupid and bad things for Joker, but she deserved better than to have a bullet in her brain. It made Harvey seethe, and he wanted to make the clown suffer. Truth be told, though, he was also quite curious to know what exactly Joker had been rifling around his desk for. He narrowed his eye as he took a few slow steps closer towards his desk, his jaw tightening. “Yeah, so maybe she did. Maybe she thought I could help her out - she was gettin’ tired a yer bullshit, after all. Can’t hardly blame her.” He pursed his lips. “What were you lookin’ for, clown?”
“How positively adorable. Tell me, Dent, exactly how would you have helped her? How you thought you could help her?” He chuckled at the ignorance. Once more, he motioned for the crime lord to take a seat. This time, however, he was more annoyed at him than before. How he had volunteered to take the spot of the hero and help Harley get away from him. The damn girl hadn’t been helpless, for gods sake. If she had really wanted to leave him, he had no doubt in her mind that she would’ve.
“Help, help, help. I bet you’re quite a helper. Keep in mind, Harvey, that I kicked her out many times. In fact, I can’t even remember how many times I’ve pushed her out of a window or tossed her into the street.” The mood had shifted in the room, changed into more of a deadlier feeling than before. The Joker’s voice had changed, also, and instead of being light and humorous, it was much slower and quieter, laced with irritation. It irritated him how Dent pointed all his fingers at him, when in fact, it had hardly been him at all. He addressed Two Face as he would if he was talking to a child. “And every time, days or weeks later, time would pass, and she’d come back. Almost like clockwork. Asking for me to let her come back, begging and pleading. I never made her return, in fact, most of the times I kicked her out I wanted her to stay gone. She chose her actions every time. How is it my fault, if every time she chose, she chose wrong?”
The leather fingers of his glove came together as he rubbed his fingerstips againsthis thumb.
And for a second, the mood from before came back, and the Joker offered a wide smile. “I’d tell ya, but then I’d have to kill ya!” And he chuckled through his nose, laughing to himself at the joke. Then he ceased his laughter and lost his smile, except for the painted red one at the edges of his lips.
“Now put down the gun. And take a seat. You try my patience, Dent. How amusing. Amusing for me, yes. But stupid for you. I’ll answer your little question if you do the things I asked, because one way or another, I’m going to get what I came here for. And by now,” he drawled, examining a gloved hand while he did so, yet keeping the ex D.A. in his line of sight. “You should know that it doesn’t pain me to get rid of ah, work colleagues. In fact, it even brings a smile to my face!”
“Oh I’ve been just peachy, Doc-tor. Never better! In fact, I feel even more healthy and energized as before!” He grinned and stroked his gloved fingers at the fabric above his heart. “I’m touched, Crane. I’ll be sure to drop by more often!”
“Joker… I haven’t heard from you in a long while….” Crane smiled at the clown “How have you been?”
Something was very, very wrong. When Harvey’s car had rolled to a stop in front of the courthouse, none of his men had emerged to open the door for him - in fact, none of the guards that were posted outside were anywhere to be seen. Despite the temporary truce that he’d just laid out with Cobblepot, he couldn’t help but wonder if the fuckin’ Penguin hadn’t double crossed him already and done a hit on his base of operations.
But no… no, Harvey had already gone to the trouble of ensuring that none of the Penguin’s men would have come out here. This was something different. Besides, if it had been a hit half of the courthouse would be gone. Frowning, the crime boss slipped easily from the back seat of the Cadillac and pulled his jacket closed, looking up at the edifice and the acid-burned face of Lady Justice overlooking the square. The light in his office was on. Eye narrowing, he turned his gaze back down and entered the building at a relaxed pace.
As the door to his office suddenly popped open, the barrel of a silver-plated pistol glinted slightly in the light as he leveled it at the man sitting behind his desk. Jaw tightening, Harvey stepped further into his office, never losing his bead on Joker, though the corner of his eye twitched when the bottle of whiskey shattered on the floor beside his desk, and his jaw tightened into a grimace. “Get the fuck outta my chair, J.” He took a few steps closer, not making a move to sit in one of the other chairs, but he fell silent for a moment as the clown spoke.
He blinked, his mouth suddenly falling open in both surprise and disgust at the Joker’s admission and flippant attitude. Growling, his jaw tightened into another grimace and his other hand balled into a fist. “I don’t care how crazy that girl was, she didn’t deserve that. I kept tellin’ her all the time that she had t’ get away from you, ya fuckin’ lunatic.”
“Ah, you two were gal pals, were you?” The purple suited man asked, sweeping his feet from the desktop and onto the floor while leaning forward onto the wooden surface. He completely disregarded the command Two Face spit out, yet commented on the colorful word he used to describe it. “My my my, what a big word! Is that the only adjective you know?” He couldn’t help but smile even wider at the sight of the weapon, and changed from flicking his knife open and closed to toying around with it in his hand. The Joker resumed his relaxed position, elbows resting on the arm of the chair and feet on the desk. His free hand cupped his own chin, his index finger above his upper lip as he took note of the situation with a chuckle. Denty was telling him what his little sidekick had deserved!
“Well, had I known how close you two were, I might not of killed the little brat! Besides, she had always loved it when I threatened to kill her before. Now she must be positively ecstatic! It’s a win-win for everyone!” Truth be told, he had always known he was going to kill her. How could he not, when she was just as unpredictable as he? Granted, he was the one who told her to jump and she was the one who said how high. Harley had been a follower, always needing someone stronger than her to lead her around and tell her what to do. He hadn’t known, however, just who she would follow after him.
“She tell you all about our little ah, hideout? Our headquarters, if you will? All the nifty little secret ways in and out? Of course she did! Not a closed book, that one.” He gestured his hands to the ground around him, covered in items that had been in the now empty desk. “I took the liberty of going through your desk to find what I wanted, just so you wouldn’t have to!” He clasped his hands together, the knife still in his left, and brought them up to rest his chin atop of. “But sadly you didn’t want to make things to easy for your ol’ pal J.”The clown sighed scornfully before taking on a much secretive tone of voice. Like he was letting Harvey in on a private joke. ”She had looked so confused when she saw the gun, what an actress she would’ve made! You should’ve seen it. She hadbegged me to think about this, but I had done all the thinking I wanted too. She had looked so scared, so helpless and alone.” The Joker pressed his lips together, as he tried to contain his joy. It didn’t help at all, and in fact, made it worse. He cackled the pent up laughter loudly. “Funniest thing I’ve seen all year!”
Maybe it was the way the sound erupted through the room; how the walls seemed to echo it along themselves until it finally reached his mind, throughout his body, and out through his “soul”. The noise clattered about the empty void inside him, it rattled in his eardrums and triggered something of a quiet chuckle through his nose. The figure in the crimson and black hit the ground with a thud, a hole gaping right between her pretty little blue yes.
Maybe now, since he made her yet another eye for her to use, maybe now she can see the error of her ways!
The Joker hummed a care-free tune, tossing the gun on top of the body on the floor and stepped over her like she was nothing more than a dog in the way. (Not even bothering to wipe her splattered blood off of his clothes and even the spots on his cheek.)
He left his headquarters and started off towards the one of a very lucky certain ex D.A.
The judge’s office in the Courthouse, probably once smelling of books and strong ocean mist febreze, now had the ever-lingering scent of cigar smoke and bourbon. The walls inside the room were covered in “I Believe In Harvey Dent” posters, there was a bookshelf by the door and a desk in the far end of the room. There was a chair in front of it, behind the mahogany table was a black leather swivel chair that was facing towards the door. The figure in the purple pinstriped suit sat, his eyes trained on the door and the yet another campaign poster (which had been ruined by a knife blade sticking in the wood, right between poster Harvey Dent’s eyes. The Joker had laughed at this, how fitting he thought).
There he sat, clicking his favorite pocketknife open and closed while black dress shoes sat on the desk, the clown’s pant legs rising up far enough to see his striped socks peeking out from underneath. The floor around the desk held piles of junk and desk drawers scattered all over it; guns, amo, maps and coin polisher lay uselessly on the ground. Not even a single knife.
The thing he was searching for wasn’t in there, either.
The man with the furrowed brow and red lips curled slightly at the edges sat and played with his knife; his smirk slowly expanding into a wide grin while his eyes danced dangerously as his old pal Two Face finally opened his office door, his permanent snarl still etched on the raw side of his face.
“Denty! My, what a coincidence.” With that, he ‘accidentally’ knocked the whiskey bottle off the man’s desk with his shoe, still lounging without a care in the world in the crime lord’s chair. “The man of the hour!” The knife, still held close to him, was gestured toward the chair across from himself. “Why, forgive my lack of manners! Please. Have a seat, won’t you?
We need to have ourselves a little ah, chat. Some advice on girls, if you will!” His face crinkled with delighted laughter at his own private joke. “Y’see, things haven’t been so great with me and Harley. As of late, all she’s able to do is bleed all over the carpet! We just got the floors done, too. So me, the problem solving man I am, put a band aid over the giant hole in her head!” He tsked and waved his hand in the air, speaking in a pitiful voice. “But no dice. What would you reccomend me to do, hmm? How am I to fix my relationship, Dent? Surely you must know, being the ladies man you are.”
“Buh buh buh buh,” he mocked shaking his head at her, his eyebrows furrowing as his lips formed into a scowl. “Well, don’t just stand there you little imp! If you’re back, then we’ve much to do. Your little ah, disappearing act was something I wasn’t aware was gonna happen. Plans plans plans, all ruined because you left.”
Whenever she left, it was because he initiated it. And he wasn’t even trying this time! ”Since when do you get to decide when you leave?” The question rolled off his tongue, coming off more like a hiss than something that could be considered a ‘friendly’ tone.
“I, b-bu-bu.. She..” Harley stumbled across her words as she felt the heated glare of her puddin’ burn in to her, she gulped. “I d-don’t, sir..” The not-so-natural blonde hung her head, squeaking her response; it was times like this when he terrified her.