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13 January 2009 @ 10:45 pm
FIC: 'Stirring'  
Title: Stirring

Pairing: Owlman(Bruce Wayne)/Jokester (with some refs to Owlman/Superwoman)

Summary: ‘He has never really been interested in sex – not in a simple way, at least’. Owlman reflects on his desires.

Rating: R/NC-17. For violence and sexual content.

Wordcount: 2000 words

A/N: Hai gais. As you may know by now if you’ve been following Overlithe’s Blood Meridian, Earth 3 is a place within the DC multiverse where reside the moral opposites of our more familiar friends on New Earth. Bruce Wayne is an evil crime lord known as Owlman, the Joker is a comedian turned do-gooding vigilante called the JokeSTER, and instead of the Justice League we have the Crime Society (featuring a badass Lois Lane as Superwoman).

Much like their inverse counterparts Batsy and Joker, Owlsie and the Jokester are forever locked in a mutually-obsessive battle which can only end in smex death.

Intrigued? Check out Overlithe’s big fat Earth 3 metapost for scanlations and discussions (and more fics!): http://overlithe.livejournal.com/39672.html

Warnings: DARK. Brief allusions to non-con (observed). Violence, death, destruction etc. BSDM fantasies with no safe word. AU.

Sponsored by Obsession, for (Owl)men.



*~*~*

Some more backgroundy waffle pertinent to the fic (skip if familiar with canon):

After the death of his parents Earth 3 lil’ Bruce (Owlman) is brought up by the hoodlum Joe Chill (actually Thomas Wayne isn’t dead, but he doesn’t reappear until Bruce is all grown up and homicidal).

Our protagonist Jackie is a not-very-funny comedian who gets the idea for the perfect gimmick (Owlman schtick!) after he witnesses Owlsie killing a club owner friend of his. Unsurprisingly Owlsie is none too thrilled about this, and eventually responds by eviscerating Jackie’s manager–cum–love-interest Harley and carving Jackie’s face up into a Glasgow smile.

Jackie’s insane natural response is to put on make-up, get some spiffy outfits and gadgets, and become a vigilante called the Jokester.

The Jokester originally fights alone, but he eventually finds temporary happiness by falling in with a group of fellow vigilantes called The Riddler Family - comprising good old Eddie Nygma, Evelyn ‘Three-Face’ Dent (Jokester’s ex!) and his long-lost daughter Duela.

It all goes tits-up and tragic eventually, but let’s not dwell on that. On with the fic!

*~*~*

Friends meet to part,
Love mocks at faith,
Two foes once met are joined 'til death.

~ Byron, The Giaour

(or 'why enemy pairings are ten times better than buddy pairings')


*~*~*

He has never really been interested in sex – not in a simple way, at least.

Sex, like money, is a thing which the small-minded tend to confuse with power.

When he was growing up by Joe Chill’s side, he encountered a lot of men who liked to surround themselves with molls and topless dancers, as if the bought smiles and gyrations of bleached-blondes meant something. He had also known men who liked to force themselves on unwilling women – their enemies’ sisters, girlfriends or daughters; frightened and friendless hard-luck stories; or hard-faced bitches who probably reminded them of the girls that spurned them at school.

In smoky pool rooms, parking lots or abandoned warehouses, the spectacle was always the same – a ring of men laughing at the screams and flailing limbs of a fragile form pinned beneath a stockier one. Predictable. Pathetic.

He simply watched and observed, his shell hardening against the world.

He had lost his virginity at the age of fourteen. He hadn’t particularly wanted to, but Joe was doing his debauched father routine, slinging an arm around his shoulders, breathing whisky in his face and saying ‘c’mon kiddo, why don’t you let this lovely lady make a man out of you?’.

The woman in question was a tired-looking brunette, just the wrong side of thirty. She was a whore, of course, and he respected that she didn’t bother to pretend that she liked him. Her hips were flecked with silvery stretch marks and low down on her belly there was a semi-circular scar from a c-section, curving upwards like a smile.

It was over quickly and afterwards he didn’t feel any different.

He was fifteen when he first killed someone: medium range, a shot to the skull. He watched the guy’s head snap back, the balletic way in which the form twisted as it fell, and he felt something, a stirring... like the indefinable emotion that wells up in the chest along with the sweep of an orchestral crescendo.

He had stared at the corpse for some time afterwards, still marveling at how instantaneous and absolute the change was – from alive, talking, scheming, walking around to nothing, a heap of decaying organic matter. Just an object now, with no more power or influence in the world than a rock or a coffee table or a trash can. Amazing.

But it wasn’t enough somehow.

The first time he felt hot entrails slithering through his fingers as the victim still uselessly flailed and babbled on the concrete floor the stirring feeling came again, much sharper than before.

There are things that are much more terrible and more intimate than any sex act – and he has done them all.

*~*~*

The thing with Superwoman, it wasn’t about sex. Not for him and not for her – for her it was simply ‘I’m getting away with this because I can’. She was determined to have an affair just to prove that she could have anyone and anything that she wanted.

He had been genuinely surprised when she first kissed him. As he watched her perform the act of seduction – the looks from beneath her eyelashes, the sweeping back of her thick, dark hair – he wondered why she had chosen him. What did he represent to her? Betrayal, he decided, a big ‘fuck you’ to Ultraman.

Well, he was up for that.

Their physical encounters were nothing more than acts of regular maintenance (sex being, unfortunately, the sine qua non of an affair). It was always more athletic than it was gratifying: he didn’t concentrate on anything except working up a sweat. She would scratch at his broad shoulders and mutter cut-and-paste porno dialogue like “you want me, don’t you, stud?” and “come on take me, you animal!” and he would do his best to tune it out. Half the time he didn’t achieve orgasm, and when he did it was through imagining other people and scenarios.

Often these visions were of the freak, the bad comedian. He especially loved to replay the moment he had marked him – recalling the supremely good feeling of the bladed knuckle duster cutting through flesh and extending the lines of the smile, blood streaming onto his hands and making them slippery. Who’s laughing now?

Inspired. Beautiful.

Violence was all in the details.

Sometimes he would remember the look that came on in the comedian’s eyes just seconds before he passed out – the bewildered expression he had worn throughout had suddenly died, a new demented certainty taking its place as he spluttered and choked through all the blood: ‘HA HA HA!’, spraying flecks of it onto Owlman’s lips, which he had then licked, almost unconsciously.

This memory alone was usually enough to get him there, shuddering and biting his partner’s shoulder to stop himself from groaning out ‘freak, you fucking freak!’.

Lois would take the credit, lying back and smiling with self-satisfaction.

*~*~*

Once he had the freak at his mercy, pushed into a corner with his back literally against a wall, the blood trailing from his split lip looking almost black in the dimness. Owlman remembers his long shadow falling across the freak’s pale form, the grin spreading inexplicably across that ruined face and some facetious aside about ‘bleeding again – what’s up with that!’.

He doesn’t know that he would have killed him. Not right away, anyhow.

The freak’s friends turned up and spoiled it, so he’ll never know, but often he dreams about the limitless possibilities of that moment.

First he would have cuffed him to something sturdy, he thinks.

After that the fantasies tend to diverge, depending on his whim...

Sometimes he traces his symbol into the freak’s skin with the tip of a knife over and over, until the welts are raised and will chafe against his garish clothes.

Or he tortures him for names, then kills everyone the freak has ever known, touched, passed by in the street; leaving him all alone at the centre of a crop circle of corpses.

Sometimes he makes it so that the freak is broken; so that he crawls on all fours and lays his head in Owlman’s lap. Owlman brushes his gloved hand through tacky strands of purple hair and tells him in a low voice what he wants; then the freak obeys.

Sometimes he dreams that the freak is curled up like a dog at the foot of his bed, waiting for his master to come home and feed him, and pet him, and chastise him – to give his pathetic existence meaning.

But always, after he has reduced his adversary to a slave, he plays the fantasy out from its beginning again, so he can experience the thrill of hearing the freak saying ‘no’ and laughing at him.

He wishes he could do it in real life – kill the freak and then summon him back from the dead in order to perpetuate an endless cycle of torture and resurrection, of breaking and remaking – yielding by turns both acquiescence and defiance.

Sometimes – not often – it’s something more conventional he thinks of. He unpeels the varicoloured clothes discovers all the hidden places where the freak is soft and vulnerable. He hurts him, but not too much – only enough to make bruises begin to bloom and a little blood run, for visual effect, mainly (his fantasies are always graphic). He doesn’t usually picture a context – the wheres and whys and hows aren’t important – but it always feels real and immediate...

Sex – simply the push and pull of two bodies. Clacking teeth and wet mouths; a cock trapped against the taut muscles of his belly. Just to rock his hips and penetrate deeper into a heat that clenches around him...

So ordinary a desire it almost embarrasses him to entertain it.

He sees the tendons flex in the freak’s neck and the rolling of his eyes, damp strands of purple hair clinging to a white temple. He imagines for a delirious moment what it would feel like to have bare hands clenching at the shifting flesh of his back, for his adversary to urge him closer, to want him.

To not laugh for five fucking minutes. Or to laugh, but at someone else for once.

To want him. That part is important, somehow – it makes the blood pound in his head.

It would prove something – though what exactly remains elusive.


*~*~*

In the Crime Society they mockingly refer to Owlman as ‘the detective’ when they think he is out of earshot.

Salvatore Maroni used to smile whenever he saw him, opening his arms and calling out: “here, Brucey my boy, come and sit by your Uncle Sally!”

He recognised Owlman’s potential back when no-one else did.

“You listen to me kid,” he would say, lightly tapping Bruce’s cheek with his fingertips, “you’re gonna go far in this racket, you know why? ‘Cause you’re always watching. You know everybody’s business – what they want, where they’ve been, who they know... you watch long and hard enough and you’ll see their weaknesses. And then you’ll take ‘em down, am I right?”

Then he would laugh, and Bruce would offer him a juvenile smile and say “sure thing, uncle Sally.”

And even though when it came time he had so many people in Maroni’s circle that any hour of the day or night he could’ve put in a call and the guy would have been dead within five minutes, he paid Sal the honour of killing him personally.

“It’s business,” he said. He likes to think that the other man respected that, even though he was too busy trying to hold his slashed throat together to give his successor a benediction.

Maroni was right – he has always been a watcher, a detective. He does his research.

There are things he knows about the freak that he thinks no-one else does: his eyes aren’t really green; they’re hazel, but in certain lights they absorb the colour of his emerald jacket. One side of his facial scars has healed differently from the other, so when he smiles it’s always lop-sided.

Owlman keeps files on him in his database: a tap of his computer keys will bring up an array of grainy images caught on CCTV. His real name is Jackie and he was born in a tenement in the narrows. His father had convictions for DUI and child neglect – Owlman probably would have gotten around to killing the bastard had not cirrhosis done the job for him just weeks before he finally managed to track Jackie Snr. down.

There are hardcopy files, too, a whole filing cabinet drawer of them. He has a playbill from every night the freak played a gig – he sent henchmen to collect them from the offices of local comedy clubs then had each and every establishment burned to the ground.

A blood-stained report written on carbon paper says that a hospital psychiatrist diagnosed him with post-traumatic stress and a possible bipolar disorder, recommending he be remanded to a secure psychiatric ward for his own safety, but the freak absconded from intensive care after ripping out his own stitches.

None of these things satisfactorily explain to Owlman why the freak won’t stay the fuck down when he smacks him; why he alone has the tenacity to keep springing back up like a clown-faced punching bag.

Or why he doesn’t try to erase or hide those shameful, ugly slashes on his cheeks – instead highlighting them with lipstick.

*~*~*

He has just made particularly uninspired love to Lois in one of her apartments in Metropolis when his cell phone rings. His contact at the Gotham Gazette informs him that the Jokester has just hijacked a local television network.

When he starts to get dressed, Lois shoots him a murderous look. “You’re going, just like that?”

“Sorry, weren’t you done?” he sneers at her. “Did you want to cuddle or something?”

“Fuck you, Bruce,” she retorts with a sort of bored malice.

He looks over at her, taking in the vertical lines made between her eyebrows by her frown, the ugly set of her mouth. He should be placating her and reassuring her that she is desirable, but he doesn’t have the patience. He will deal with the consequences later.

He pulls the bottom half of his suit on, hating that Lois is watching him. There is a deep, dull ache in his loins because what little arousal he had earlier has long faded, but he remains unsatisfied.

Then he thinks about the fact that within a couple of hours his fist will be connecting with the freak's laughing face, and suddenly there it is again - the familiar stir.

 
 
 
(Deleted comment)
ladyk_d_azrael: owlsiejokesterladyk_d_azrael on January 14th, 2009 09:23 am (UTC)
Hee! Glad you thought it was hot... I think that's what I was going for, underneath the layers of disturbing stuff..
(Deleted comment)
ladyk_d_azrael: owlsiejokesterladyk_d_azrael on January 14th, 2009 09:22 am (UTC)
Yay for the Earth 3 fans! <3

it made me think of what The Joker did to Batman in the Superman/Emperor Joker comics.

That's what I was thinking of too! Killing him just once would never be enough for Owlsie!

the various nuances of Owlman's physical desires, and his simultaneous acceptance/ rejection of them.

The great thing about Owlsie is that he's not as Denial City as Batman (he's much more pragmatic). I think he'd be able to admit his desires to himself even if he chooses (for reasons of pride) not to acknowledge them openly.
painted on my heart: half grinbloodonmyfangs on January 14th, 2009 01:24 am (UTC)
What hotness.. I loved this.

The twisted psychological aspects at play with this pairing in this world are just as fascinating to me as regular old Batman/Joker... and you did an utterly fantastic job of letting the reader see just what's going on inside Owlman's head. You fleshed out the character very well and his voice really felt IC to me. And considering there's not a wealth of canon Owlman material out there aside from the Earth 3 series from which to draw upon for inspiration, that's impressive.

Also, love that quote from Byron. So true, so true... enemy pairings shall always be infinitely more alluring to me than any other combo.
ladyk_d_azrael: jokestersmileladyk_d_azrael on January 14th, 2009 09:17 am (UTC)
Glad you enjoyed!

You fleshed out the character very well and his voice really felt IC to me. And considering there's not a wealth of canon Owlman material out there aside from the Earth 3 series from which to draw upon for inspiration, that's impressive.

Heh, even from canon you get that he's a power-mad psycho. And obsessed with Jokester. Much of my characterisation is indebted to overlithe of course - and the many rambly convos we've had on LJ concerning allt he Earth 3 posse.

enemy pairings shall always be infinitely more alluring to me than any other combo.

I have never seen the attraction in buddy pairings. There's no tension and it's just asking for obvious fluff! BAH!
fear and desireoutcastspice on January 14th, 2009 01:27 am (UTC)
this is excellent, and extremely hot. i'm so glad to be reading it!! i love Owlman's fantasies, wow.

i'm having a bit of trouble separating owlman from pat bateman, tho. :)

Owlman probably would have gotten around to killing the bastard had not cirrhosis done the job for him just weeks before he finally managed to track Jackie Snr. down.

you know what's excellent about this? ok, so if Owlman is thinking to himself, there's a difference between "gotten around to" (implies lack of care) and "managed to" (implies effort). so, he's really not being honest with himself, but it's so hidden! or, i'm reading way too much into it :)
ladyk_d_azrael: owlsiejokesterladyk_d_azrael on January 14th, 2009 09:11 am (UTC)
Hee! This was fun to write. Glad you enjoyed!

i'm having a bit of trouble separating owlman from pat bateman

Is it because they both like to touch other people's insides? They both have a thing for entrails, don't they? I think their motivations are different though - Bateman eviscerates people almost out of a desperation to feel human connection - because everything in his world is so superficial and sanitized, he cuts people open just to 'know' them (he replaces emotional interiority with corporeal interiority).

Owlman likes to touch wounds and entrails because it's symbolic of his power over weaker humans (that's what I meant by 'things more intimate and more terrible than rape'). He likes to reduce people to powerless objects. And he's obsessed with Jokester because Jokester is the only one who won't submit to objectification.

Jokester: yeah, stop objectifying me you perv!

if Owlman is thinking to himself, there's a difference between "gotten around to" (implies lack of care) and "managed to" (implies effort). so, he's really not being honest with himself, but it's so hidden!

Oh, absolutely! He could never admit that he failed to do something! Also, I like the questionable motivation - why kill Jokester's abusive father? Because he thinks it will fuck with the Jokester's head? Because he simply can't bear there being in existence people who are/were close to his enemy?

Oh Owlsie, I think it is you who is the freak.
fear and desireoutcastspice on January 14th, 2009 12:00 pm (UTC)
re owlman/bateman, yes, part of it was the entrails thing, for sure :) but part also is that they're both played by christian bale (in my mind) :)

There are things that are much more terrible and more intimate than any sex act – and he has done them all.

Yes, that was an excellent line, and certainly showed a lot about him!

how can anyone stop objectifying Jokester? i know i can't! haha.
(Deleted comment)
ladyk_d_azrael: owlsiejokesterladyk_d_azrael on January 14th, 2009 09:26 am (UTC)
Gosh, thanks! :3

Have I told you that I love your icons, btw? I think you should make a new animated one that goes 'Jokester's agenda:' 1. be thorn in Owlsie's side, 2. look really swell.

(Deleted comment)
ladyk_d_azrael: owlsiejokesterladyk_d_azrael on January 15th, 2009 09:05 am (UTC)
<3

HEE! Excellent work.
(Deleted comment)
btsxbeta: jokesterbtsxbeta on January 14th, 2009 04:34 pm (UTC)
*flails* AWESOME. Hot and twisted and just... wow. You rock.
ladyk_d_azrael: owlsiejokesterladyk_d_azrael on January 14th, 2009 10:38 pm (UTC)
:3

It makes me happy that you enjoyed it - I've been voyeuristically enjoying the Earth 3 chats between you and Overlithe!
i was always like thisbionic on January 14th, 2009 06:48 pm (UTC)
ahh..that was wonderful. Really love the glance into Owlman's motivations, his intense obsession with the Jokester.
ladyk_d_azrael: jokerjerkladyk_d_azrael on January 14th, 2009 10:40 pm (UTC)
Well, it's just how I imagine him. I hope it is at least compatible with canon! : )
I bleed el tricolor y tengo el corazon blanco.: Oz's Chris and Tobycoldryuuza on January 14th, 2009 09:03 pm (UTC)
- jesus fucking christ! -

it's official. Owlman scares me more than the Joker. omg, even in this universe, Bruce can't stop obsessing about him in every single fucking way. This universe is interesting because it has so much potential!
ladyk_d_azrael: owlsiejokesterladyk_d_azrael on January 14th, 2009 10:42 pm (UTC)
It was a bit terrifying living inside his head for a few days while I was writing this! o_0

The potential is endlessly intriguing, no?

And the obsessions are delicious...
Lebmat de Quevedoplatypusbang on January 14th, 2009 11:15 pm (UTC)
...Owlman, you creepy, stalkerish bastard. You have sexy toughts.

The fantasies with a broken Jokester gave me specially delicious images. Awesome.

the wheres and whys and hows aren't important

Sure, Owlman, we know. We like PWP, too.
ladyk_d_azrael: jokestersmileladyk_d_azrael on January 15th, 2009 09:14 am (UTC)
You mean this bit?: Owlman brushes his gloved hand through tacky strands of purple hair and tells him in a low voice what he wants; then the freak obeys.

Hee hee hee! And what would you like the Jokester to do with his head in your lap, Owlsie?

Sure, Owlman, we know. We like PWP, too.

LOL!

Lebmat de Quevedoplatypusbang on January 16th, 2009 05:53 am (UTC)
Yup. That bit exactly :)
astraea on January 15th, 2009 12:04 pm (UTC)
Owlman sure is a real evil bastard...poor Jokester :/
Compared to him normal Bruce W has it quite easy with Joker!
ladyk_d_azrael: owlsiejokesterladyk_d_azrael on January 15th, 2009 01:28 pm (UTC)
Still, Jokester does know just how to wind Owlsie up. That counts for something, right?

Pity he comes from the world where evil always triumphs!
trensukaje_less on January 15th, 2009 06:36 pm (UTC)
*shiver* Eh, Owlsie's kind of scary. His mind (or, ah, libido) works in interesting ways.

I kind of wonder what would happen if Owlman ever met the Joker. I think there'd be...a lot of blood.
ladyk_d_azrael: owlsieownedladyk_d_azrael on January 16th, 2009 09:31 am (UTC)
Hmm, I believe Overlithe has that scenario covered in a forthcoming fic!
trensukaje_less on January 17th, 2009 10:29 pm (UTC)
For real? Awesome! That's cetainly something to look forward to.
muffinbitch: i'd hit thatmuffinbitch on January 20th, 2009 12:23 pm (UTC)
Yes, I can just IMAGINE what you're thinking of with the Jokester's head in your lap, Owlman!!! Huh. That was...scary and hot and brilliant and fascinating. Oh my, I think I'm addicted to this fandom. Owlman!Bruce is SO much scarier than the Joker...
And the interesting little twist that he wants Jokester to want him back - hmm, I guess because just forcing him wouldn't be satisfying, he wants to own every piece of him, mind, soul, body, and unless he's destroyed Jackie's resistance to him, he hasn't won - hurting him doesn't prove anything. aargh, it's too late at night to form coherant thoughts, but the psychological interaction in this and the usual universe is just fascinating...Anyway, brilliant fic, is what I wanted to say!
ladyk_d_azrael: lookingswellladyk_d_azrael on January 20th, 2009 12:47 pm (UTC)
And the interesting little twist that he wants Jokester to want him back - hmm, I guess because just forcing him wouldn't be satisfying, he wants to own every piece of him, mind, soul, body, and unless he's destroyed Jackie's resistance to him, he hasn't won - hurting him doesn't prove anything.

Heh, overlithe has a theory that, like many very controlling people, Owlsie is secretly a massive sub. I like the idea that although he fantasises about destroying the Jokester, and making him submit, secretly what really excites him is the resistance. Hence his fantasies about breaking and remaking – he would lose interest if Jokester actually ever gave in. Likewise, he wants to understand the Jokester, and for the Jokester to remain an aberration and an enigma.

I see it much like Joker's ambivalent attitude towards Batman - he both wants to fuck with Batsy's values and for Batsy to keep resisting his efforts to push him into moral collapse. I love the admiration in his voice in TDK when he laughs and says 'You really are incorruptible, aren't you?'.

Blah. Sorry, character studies always make me go into waffly overdrive.
muffinbitch: He's BEHIND youmuffinbitch on January 20th, 2009 12:54 pm (UTC)
No, no, I'm all ABOUT waffly overdrive! ;D
That COMPLETELY makes sense as a character study, to me. He would absolutely lose interest if he ever won, both Owlman and Joker, actually.
They both strike me as kids taking apart their toys to see how they work. And once you've done that...what is there left to play with?
...By the way, I think I'm in love with your icon, there.
ladyk_d_azrael: lookingswellladyk_d_azrael on January 20th, 2009 06:25 pm (UTC)
Luckily for them both their adversaries are fairly resilient!

Joker: Waaa, I broke my Batsy and now I have nothing to play with!!!

The icon was a request kindly fulfilled by _rubber_chickenso credit if you want to nab it.