Chapter 16 Final Countdown

I do not own DC Universe or Twilight. Read and review, please. Thank you!

Hello fine citizens of Gotham and wherever else you maybe, as you can see I’ve got a smile planted on my face. But deep down I’m heartbroken.”

Dick slams down the weight bar recognizing the voice. He shoots up wiping the sweat from his brow eyeing the TV in the gym.

You see I’ve lost someone dear to me. What I would like from you all is to help me guide my little Harley Quinn back into my arms. Here is my challenge: the citizens of Gotham have until midnight tonight to bring her to me. Or, I will unleash all the inmates in Blackgate Prison. I’m sure they would love to help me! So, whataya say Gotham, I bet your just dying to go look…ha ha ha ha ha ha!”

He closes his eyes for a moment as the reality of this is hitting. His hands tremble a bit as Joker’s fun fires and the screen goes black.

“Bella…” He says as if in literal pain.

Dick rushes out of the room and grabs his cell.

“Come on baby answer please.” He doesn’t even bother showering. Dick heads to the cave and checks the video surveillances of Arkham. He narrows his eyes seeing Joker still in his cell.

“What the hell is going on?!” He questions with grinded teeth.

“Dick?”

“Thank God. Bella baby where are you?”

“With Selina we’re in a cab.”

“Get to the manor now.”

“But Dick.”

“Baby I’m not going to argue with you on this. Get your ass over here and now. We’ll figure this out together. Hell bring her with you I don’t care. Just please listen to me.”

He hears her sigh.

“People will die tonight.”

“We’ll discuss this when you get here.”

She hangs up and he grits his teeth slamming his phone down. Dick rushes outside pacing the front yard. He takes in a breath once the cab pulls up. He dashes over and opens the door. He tosses a hundred at the driver. Dick and Selina eye one another but he nods as he takes Bella’s hand. Once they make their way in Dick takes both their jackets.

Alfred takes them from his hands and hangs them up. Dick goes back to pacing in thought. Selina sighs as she looks around.

“Been awhile, still nothing’s changed.” She mouths.

“So where’s Bruce?”

“Out of town.”
“Oh well now’s a good time isn’t it?”

Dick sighs cutting Selina a look. Bella starts laughing as she watches the two. They both turn to her.

“NO by all means both of you please continue. This is highly entertaining.” Bella scoffs and makes her way to the couch plopping herself down. She covers her face in misery, her mind a tangled mess.

“AH, the fucking irony. That’s rich!”

Selina and Dick share the same expression as they look upon Bella.

“So what’s your plan Wonder Boy how do we keep Joker’s grimy hands off my girl?”

“Your girl?” Dick hisses.

“That’s right, now quit spraying your gun all over the place, such a filthy habit.”

Dick rolls his eyes.

“Easy, I give myself up.”

They both look to her as if she’s lost her mind.

“Not an option!” Dick yells.

“It’s the only option!”

“Don’t be an idiot kitten. Just what do you think he’ll do to you once he gets his hands on you! He killed the original remember!”

“That’s one life! ONE! VS the multitude of lives that will be taken after midnight tonight if I’m not handed over!”

“He thinks you’re the fucking original! So in actuality even you’re not what he’s looking for!”

“Well Harleen’s DEAD so you tell me what the fuck am I supposed to do Selina! I mean this was your brilliant plan to begin with right? Did you not think to have a maybe if we get ROYALLY SCREWED PLAN? HONESTLY HOW MANY FUCKING TIMES ARE YOU ALL GOING TO LOCK THIS BASTARD UP AND LET HIS ASS ESCAPE! KILL THE SON OF A BITCH ALREADY! JESUS CHRIST! WHO ELSE’S BLOOD MUST BE SHED BEFORE YOU DEEM HIM WORTHY OF DEATH!”

Selina looks to Dick.

“Ask your precious Nightwing and Batman…”

Bella narrows her eyes.

Dick sighs at this.

“What does that mean?”

“They don’t believe in killing. Under any circumstances! They take this justice and honor bullshit a bit too far always have! Both know he should be dead. Yet no, they both just lock him right back up and wait until shit hits the fan yet again and again it’s a never ending cycle.”

“Selina…” Dick warns.

“Don’t even pretty boy! She deserves to know! She’s living under your damn roof. And don’t even pretend you and Bruce aren’t trying to get her to under your wings. I know what all this is. So convenient for the both of you now isn’t it! You have my kitten right where you both want. What choice could she possibly have now?”

“And what would be so bad about that?”

“Oh come on, you honestly think she wants this!”

“YOU think she wants to stay by your side Selina! To become a thief again?”

“That’s all you can focus on isn’t it. That’s all you and Bruce will ever see!”

“That’s all there is!”

“SHUT THE HELL UP BOTH OF YOU!”
Bella pulls at her hair.

Alfred sighs and takes Bella by the arm leading her away from the confrontation.

“She belongs with us!” Dick hisses as she’s out of the room.
“We’ll just see about that.” Selina says with a menacing smile.

“Jesus Selina! If you care about her so much… wouldn’t you want this for her! A better life? A chance at salvation? Even you can’t possibly be that selfish!”

“And what do you think Bruce will do when my girl fucking takes the Joker’s heart and eats it! You honestly think he’ll allow her back behind the manor gates?! We both know there is no forgiveness for such an act according to that man! First time she takes a life that’ll be it. He’ll drop her like a sack of bricks. I know Bella I’ve seen her fight. Hell I’ve seen her kill before! She’s highly capable of ending this sorry son of a bitch!”

Dick rears back.

“Wait what?”

Selina sighs rolling her eyes.

“Shit, let me guess she didn’t tell you?”

“NO!”

Selina has a good laugh.
“Oh yeah your little precious Harley, wonder boy has taken a life. The bastard deserved it too.”

Dick looks towards the stairs where Alfred took her.

“It was one of Joker’s little thugs ironically. The bastards beat her to a bloody pulp the first day she came off the bus. Her first day in the shadows of this lovely city. I never told her but the bastards were going to rape her ass then kill her. They did a real number on her. So don’t you dare go and make her feel like shit over something you know she had every right to do! Besides, she didn’t even remember doing it.”

He rears back feeling ill. Dick thinks back to the day in the video store.

“I think I’ve seen that side of her already.” He says softly but looks towards the stairs still.

“I think that her mind shuts itself down. It’s like a defense mechanism. Whatever that damn doctor did to her…When she has these episodes, she doesn’t hardly remember a thing. But it’s been getting better within time.”

He turns back to Selina.

“How’d she kill him?”

Selina smiles proudly.

“Ripped his fucking jugular out with her teeth.”

His eyes widen and he stumbles back a bit.

“That’s right little boy wonder. My girls a real fire cracker when you piss her the fuck off.”

“Jesus…”

“Don’t even Dick! I mean it! She’s been through enough. I don’t want your sorry noble ass giving her any grief over this. I honestly thought she had already told you or I wouldn’t have said anything.”

Dick pinches the bridge of his nose but nods.

“I wouldn’t do that to her Selina. You might not realize it. I mean why would you? But I’m trying to help her. I can see you honestly care for Bella but you can’t keep tugging her back your direction. You’ve got to let go of the ropes if you truly wish to save her. Let her do this Selina. Why are you so against this for her? What is so bad about Bruce and I taking her in? What has you so twisted in that mind of yours that you see this as a bad thing? We’d take care of her! I love her Selina this isn’t some game to me. You need to know that. I’d do anything for her. That is why I haven’t pushed her towards any direction yet. I might suggest and hint but I never try to force her any way. The only thing I’ve ever been guilty of is forcing her out of her criminal ways. She’ll only end up in prison or worse! That and it’s also not who she is. We both know she’s better than that.”

“Ouch…” Selina says with a wince.

“You have a choice too you know. It’s never too late.”
“Now who sounds like daddy?”

Dick rolls his eyes but shrugs.

“You’re right. I suppose over the years I do sound a lot like Bruce. I’d prefer to see the best in people even you Selina. If you love that girl so much then why not turn over a new leaf? You couldn’t do it for Bruce! Why not for her?”

“Please you’re going to make me vomit.”

“He still loves you ya know?”

Selina grits her teeth and grabs Dick by the collar.

“Don’t you ever fucking pull that shit again.”

“IT’S TRUE! WHY DO YOU THINK HE’S NEVER BEEN ABLE TO QUITE MOVE ON! HELL BRUCE STILL BLAMES HIMSELF! HE ALWAYS WILL Selina! I PAY MORE ATTENTION THEN HE THINKS. IN FACT WITHOUT MEANING TO HE’D TAKEN OUT HIS FEELINGS FOR YOU OUT ON BELLA! HE DOOMED US TO HAVE THE SAME FATE YOU BOTH HAD! YOU’RE THE ONE THAT GOT AWAY! HE’S NEVER FORGIVEN HIMSELF! HE’S NEVER FELT THE SAME FOR ANYONE!”

“OH PLEASE WHAT ABOUT THAT FUCKING DIANA!”

“NOT EVEN HER!”

Selina drops her hold and shakes her head. A knot forms in her throat.

“You’re lying.”

“Whatever Selina.”

He starts towards the stairs but pauses with his back turned to Selina.

“Stay put, I’m going to need you.”

She half laughs.

“You? Needing me?”

“Yes Selina… It’s clear how we both feel. It’s time to put our differences aside even if for one night. Bella needs us.”

She swallows back on this.

“I’m not going anywhere.” He nods and makes his way up.

“Why do we fall down Bruce?”

Bella narrows her eyes as Alfred tells her his story.

“So we can learn to pick ourselves back up. I told him. He’s more than just Batman. He’s my son. Maybe not by blood but just as Dick is to Bruce.”

Bella smiles and brings her knees to her chest.

“In some ways Bruce reminds me of Charlie.”

“Charlie?”

“He was my father. He was chief of police. He’d that same sternness and determination in his eyes. Especially when he was on a case. Bruce has that. That certain look in his eyes.” She presses her lips together in thought.”

Dick continues to listen as he stands by the doorway.

Bella rolls over on Dick’s bed as Alfred tosses something out from the closet.

“What’s this?” She questions and he simply smiles.

Bella runs her hands over the black bag that’s covering something.

“Think of it as a new beginning.” Alfred says and exits the room.

Her eyes narrow as she opens the bag. She breaks into a smile and takes out the suit.

“Awesome!”

She jumps down from the bed holding it against her. It looked even better than the one she had made herself.

“Alfred…” Dick hisses catching him at the door.

“Why are you giving that to her now? I want her grounded.”

Alfred nods looking back to the room.

“Shouldn’t we take all precautions Master Grayson? She’d be much more protected…” He hints.

Dick sighs gathering his point.

“In the Harley persona?”

Alfred nods as Dick’s gathering it.

“Precisely, who better to protect Bella Swan than Harley Quinn herself sir.”

He releases Alfred’s arm. He peers into the room. Bella’s looking into the mirror holding up the top. Dick makes his way behind her. His arms go around her waist. He kisses along her neck. Dick twirls her around to face him. His hands go to her cheeks and he looks her in the eyes.

“Suit up Bella baby.”

She looks to him confused.

“I’ll explain later…”

She nods as Dick starts to unbutton her shirt. He forces back his emotions, his touch staying warm and gentle as he takes the corset from her hand. With the swipe of one hand he takes off her shirt and bra. He takes in her beauty then places the corset on her. He grins as she fixes her breast in the suit. Dick undoes her pants and yanks them down. He then hands her the Harley pants. Once she steps in and pulls them up he fastens them. Dick reaches into the bag and hands her the belt. She puts the belt on and steps into the boots. She laces them up. He takes in a breath grabbing her gloves. She takes them but heads to the bathroom. He leans against the doorway as she does her makeup and hair first. Then she places the gloves on.

After she turns to him he nods.

“You’re to stay at the mansion until I give further notice.”
“Wait what?”

He winks and kisses her cheek.

“Dick! Then what was the point?!”

“To protect Bella Swan at all cost and you had better do that Harley!”

He grabs her roughly by the corset and looks her in the eyes.

“You protect her!” He shakes her a bit staring her down.

Bella blinks a few times but breaks into a smile.

“There you are. Now stay! Do as I say Harley! You’re not to leave this mansion! You will stay by Selina and Alfred’s side. You will do whatever it takes to keep Bella Swan safe. You owe her! After everything she’s done for you! You had better repay her!”

A teardrop sheds from her right eye. He reaches back and pats dry the tear. He touches up the makeup.

“Go downstairs Harley and behave. I’ll be back.”

“Where you going sweet thang?”

“Time for Nightwing to join the party.”

“Yay!” She jumps into his arms kicking her feet about.

He nods and places her back down. He kisses her forehead and runs a hand along her waist.

“Go on now.”

She giggles and dashes out of the room. Dick closes his eyes and grips the sink his knuckles turning white. He turns on the sink and scrubs his face fighting it back. He dries off his face and heads to the cave.

He gets in gear and exits the cave heading back into the mansion. He looks directly upon Selina.

“You’re not to let her out of your sight.”

Selina doesn’t argue she gives a simple nod. He takes in one last breath looking upon Harley.

“Later Blue Jay!”

He nods as she blows him a kiss. Nightwing pretends to catch it and puts it to his lips with a wink then vanishes.

Nightwing stands before the Joker’s cell. He does a complete circle walking around it. The Joker paces around eyeing him. Nightwing stops and taps on the glass as he looks around. Nightwings eyes narrow as he looks above and sees a small v shaped crack. He rears back.

“Oops…” Joker says and Nightwing jumps back.

“Let me out!” He demands slamming on the glass as Batman now.

Nightwing swallows back.

“Clayface…” He utters as it all starts to unravel.

Batman slowly starts to melt becoming nothing but a pile of russet goo on the ground. Nightwing takes out his eskrima sticks as the goo crawls up the cell and starts to seep out of the crack.

Selina and Alfred turn to the knock at the door. Alfred nods towards Harley and Selina as he makes his way to the door. Joker’s thugs force their way inside. Selina rushes to the door seeing Alfred putting up one hell of a fight. She rears back impressed but looks back with concern towards Harley as she comes out to see what the commotion.

“NO!” Selina yells as Harley starts to fight.

The three of them do their best to fight them off. However they each turn as a machine gun goes off firing about the mansion. Harley’s eyes widen and she slams Alfred and Selina down to safety. The thug with the gun smiles.

“Joker says it’s time to come home.”

Four more men with guns come in the door. They aim their guns at Alfred and Selina. Harley sighs irritably.

“Tell daddy I’m coming home…”
“NO!” Selina yells and one of the thugs knocks her out.

Harley grits her teeth and slams him down holding her knife to his throat. She feels a gun to the back of her head.

“Let’s go!”

She laughs and raises her hands in the air.

“Well by all means boys… you sure know how to rattle a girl’s heart. Take me away!”

They nod to one another and cover Harley’s face with a black cloth sack. They tie it enough to slightly choke her. She grits her teeth as she moves her neck around to loosen it some. They force her hands back and cuff them. They drag her out of the manor. Alfred rushes to his feet once they leave. He picks Selina up checking her pulse. He then carries her to one of the guest bedrooms. Alfred calls to Bruce as he cares for Selina.

Nightwing goes to slam down his sticks but is plunged back into the wall. He’s sent completely through the wall into another area of the asylum. Clayface’s true form now hovering over him. All that went through Nightwing’s mind at the moment wasn’t even this. He knew this meant Joker had perfectly set this up. By now he’d his grimy hands on Harley…


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One thought on “Chapter 16 Final Countdown”

  1. It’s a bit creepy to me how Dick fuels her split personality. Because that’s how Harley is coming off. He was speaking to her Harley persona as if she was a completely different person. Wasn’t he just telling her a few chapters back to find a way to merge the two. It’s not healthy that she thinks she’s actually Harley.

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