So I see a prompt for "grudge sex" (okay, I'm *slightly* paraphrasing). But my brain only turned up "grief sex" which is something completely different. Kind of. So nothing big, 1300 words, post-Final Crisis and completely dependent on *that* plot point (DCU and sortamaybe Bruce/Clark), bleak, nothing super-explicit, and something to offend just about everyone. Or not. Also, I unashamedly abuse the second person because someone has to.
"I used to jerk off to this," he says, fingers splaying against the headboard, stretching into a yawn. He's half-asleep, the uniform a dark puddle on the rug that you and your wife argued about for half an hour in the Carpet Barn off 54th. She won and now it lies graceless beneath your bed that reeks of sweat and semen, both his and yours.
You should hang it up, you think. The cowl stands in the middle, empty and accusing. You never would have, before. Never. But now you have and it's done. Or as done as it can be with his hand running over your arm as he rolls into you with an "Mmmm."
He keeps talking as you place your hand over his to push it away. But you don't. You leave it there. "Used to imagine catching you two in the act—"
"Don't," you say, finger in sudden warning against his lips. He nods slightly, eyes older than they should be and understanding, and just takes that finger, sucks on it, rubs his jaw against the heel of your hand. He has stubble and you wish it could hurt, burn.
"Dick, don't," you say again, but it's already too late.
It's just as much about grief for him as it is for you.
It should have been Diana, if anyone, you tell yourself as you roll the sheets and comforter into a ball to take to the laundromat down the street. You wince as you hear the heavy boots, wisp of silk, five floors above, the roof top of your building. You and your wife planted a tomato garden there, petitioned the co-op for it. All since withered on the vine, neither of you having tended them regularly. An eye-sore, the building petition will say, get rid of those things, a fire-hazard.
Some farmer you turned out to be.
A swish of line and he's gone.
It should have been Diana. That, you could explain and maybe she'd forgive you.
"You know better than that, Kal," Diana says. "He loved you."
The washing machine vibrates, having taken your last quarter. There's a ripped copy of Ladies' Home Journal on the chair next to you. A mass of rags that could be a man is asleep under the folding counter.
"Hey," you say, "Do you need—?"
"Fuck off," the mass says as he rolls over toward the wall.
You laugh, softly. How Gotham. And your throat tightens as you shake your head to loosen it again. How Gotham, but this is Metropolis, your city, and how does it come to this?
By the time he says, "Fuck off," again, he's rolling into the inexplicably open door of the nearest shelter and you're flipping through that Ladies' Home Journal.
Bruce – caboose – papoose – adduce – recluse – chartreuse – profuse – mongoose – induce – seduce.
You're hovering six miles above Centennial, but you have telescopic vision so you can see perfectly well into the limousine that you'd very much like to fling into a lake at this precise moment. You could rescue her then, bride-carry, even though you haven't had the courage to ask her out yet.
It's ten years ago and the head of Bruce Wayne disappears underneath her skirt as one stiletto tries desperately to scratch the bullet-proof glass. He's saying filthy things as he rises, suspenders falling off his shoulders, and her neck arches beneath his mouth.
In space, no one can hear you scream. Technically, you know that you need to fly past the mesosphere for sound not to carry. But the thin, horrible noise tells you close enough.
"Did you want something, Clark?" Bruce says. It's five o'clock in the morning and he's sitting on the edge of his monstrous bed sipping a scotch. He dips his fingers down and grabs an ice cube. His cheeks hollow out as he sucks on it.
"Let's try to keep this professional," is all you say before you fly off the veranda.
"Wait," he whispers. You could be as far as the Solomon Islands before he says this, but you hear it regardless.
This is also ten years ago, minus eight hours.
He never says it again. At least, not to you.
You've forgotten the fabric softener and have lectured your own mother on the evils of dryer sheets often enough that you decide to live with the inevitable static. Your building has a laundry room in the basement so you don't even need to be here.
Here is where normal is. Or at least where it should be.
You hum as you fold.
The adultery rate among emergency workers is horrific and your own particular brand of rescue workers fares no better with that percentage. Divorces occur almost as often as marriages. You know this. You've counseled enough, given advice, the firm hand on the shoulder. Be strong, you say, you have to be.
God, you're an idiot.
"I should tend the chores," you say as Ma and Lois put the last of the casseroles away. You're all wearing black and you can't bear to look at Pa's chair in the darkened living room.
You're in work clothes now and you don't turn as you hear the careful footsteps behind you in the barn.
"Thanks for coming, Bruce."
"I sent Alfred around the block."
You turn. He stands at least three feet from you, hands in his trench coat.
"The nearest block is a good five miles away."
The corners of his mouth twist up, briefly, before gravity turns them down again. "Well, he might be a while then."
"Why didn't we?" you ask as Bruce heads out of the barn. It's a horrible question, and the tone of your voice betrays what you mean even though the words themselves are vague. He may think you mean now.
He stops, stares out at the near field. It's sunset. A full minute ticks by before he says, "It would have been a disaster."
You can only nod. The hay needs cutting and you should do that before you and Lois head back to town.
"Take it from me," he says after another silent minute. Dust on the horizon announces that Alfred has found that block and is returning. "Some what-ifs should never be indulged."
The two of you don't hug; you don't even shake hands. What would be the point?
She's waiting for you as you turn the key in the lock, laundry bag slung over your shoulder. None of the lights are on.
"You forgot the mattress pad," is all she says.
She doesn't go to the closet; she doesn't pack her things. Instead, she helps you remake the bed.
"Oh, Clark," she says, "Let's talk about this later."
You can't move until she does; it's impossible. Lucky for you, her arms go around you.
An hour later, you make dinner while she showers.
It's tomorrow or the day after. You're floating above Gotham. Bruce would want you to at least check.
"Do we have a problem?" Batman says as he's crouched on a cornice. The gargoyle beneath his boot is either smiling or vomiting.
"No, Jesus, fuck no!" whimpers the man dangling from his left gauntlet. He's already pissed himself. The urine trail snakes down to his collar.
"I wasn't talking to you." The snarl, it's uncanny.
"No, we're good," is all you say, all he would want you to say. Batman is a few inches shorter than he should be and more than a few pounds lighter, but certainly no less terrifying. He gives you one short nod and ignores you until you fly away.
You hear the confession before you've flown three blocks. You smile. You won't be back for quite some time, but he'll be all right. After all, Dick has been taught by the best.