Author: Kat Lee
Challenge/Prompt: beattheblackdog 76: Sink
Warning(s): Alternate Universe, Character Death
Word Count: 1,081
Date Written: 20 August 2017
Disclaimer: All characters within belong to DC Comics, not the author, and are used without permission.
The world has gone crazy. She can still hear the sounds of the explosions ripping across the nation in the back of her mind, still feel the shake of the ground beneath her feet, still see him, her hero, going up in flames. Only now Harley’s finally free to admit he was never her hero. Pammy’s right: He was always holding her back.
But she never has. Pamela has never done anything to her but be kind, reassuring, and all rescuey. She’s the reason, Harley knows, she’s alive now. She hadn’t even seen her coming, but suddenly she’d been there beside her, followed by her plants. Two of her large Venus fly traps had picked up Harley’s hyenas along the way, holding them in their cavernous mouths to keep them safe.
Harley had been still screaming, still been crying. Ivy hadn’t given her a chance to think. She had not wasted a single word. She’d simply scooped her up into her arms and kept running, her plants surrounding them and granting them passage through the truest, most dangerous madhouse Harley had ever witnessed.
News reports just before they had come here, wherever here is, had said that Gotham City had been leveled. There was nothing left of the infamous city; even the Batman had disappeared. War had broken out not just across the nation but throughout the world. Soldiers, heroes, and their own like, the villains, were at each other’s throats. Normal people were not only being caught in between but were looting and ravishing whatever was left. One woman had even been interviewed saying she had stolen from the local supermarket because they wouldn’t open their doors and she had to feed her babies.
No stores were open. No hospitals were accepting new patients. No person was too good to be touched by all that was happening. Harley rocks back and forth, her arms wrapped around her legs, as she watches the sun sink in the horizon. The sky has red; the shade reminds her of all the blood she’s seen shed in the last week.
She feels a comforting hand on her shoulder, sees Ivy sit beside her out of the corner of her blue eyes. “Red,” she asks softly, “what are we gonna do?”
“We’re going to stay here,” Ivy answers both gently and readily, “where the rest of the world can’t touch us, and when they’re done killing each other, it’ll just be us and our babies left.” She reaches over and strokes the blonde hair between Harley’s limp pigtails. “It’ll just be us, but it’s going to be fine. You’ll see.”
“The whole world,” Harley repeats, leaning closer to Ivy and laying her head against her shoulder, “with just and me, your plants, and my babies?”
Harley smiles. “Sounds like fun.” It’s growing darker now, but for the first time in weeks, she’s not afraid. There’s nothing left to fear. The one person who always hurt her more than any other, even if he did love her in his own, insane way, is dead. He’s not coming after her this time, and Ivy’s plants and trees will keep the rest of the world away. She’s safe, and they’re going to be just fine.
She nuzzles into Ivy’s bare shoulder, glad she found a formula years ago that keeps her skin from being toxic to Harley as long as Harley remembers to take a sip of it every day. Silently, Ivy wraps her arms around Harley and brings her even closer. She kisses her head, knowing she’s tired and doesn’t push her any further.
“Why don’t you sleep?” she asks softly instead. Harley’s eyes are already sliding closed. Over the blonde’s head, Ivy lifts her green eyes to the sun. She’s always known this day would come when humanity, such as it is called, would do itself in. She’s known, too, that her babies and she would find a way to survive. The one thing she hadn’t expected was that she and her children, Mother Nature’s children, would not be alone.
She looks down at the slim figure now curled beside her, her head resting on her breast. This woman has brought out all kinds of instincts in her she’d never known she still possessed. Before Harley, Ivy would have simply beat a hasty retreat from Gotham, but she hadn’t been able to leave her behind. She had started scouring the city for her when she’d first realized that the end was drawing near. She’d almost despaired of finding her until she had seen her standing still, tears streaming down her face.
But she hasn’t cried in three days now, Ivy reminds herself. She hasn’t spoken his name today. She hasn’t tried to make an excuse for all the things he’d done to her. She knows she’s thought of him -- she probably always will --, but she doesn’t seem to miss him any longer. She seems to be content to be with her.
Ivy hopes she is, because eternity will be a long time to spend with only Harley for company besides her plants otherwise. It’s funny, she thinks, how much this girl has changed her. She once wanted to be the only “human” left alive. She wanted the Earth to belong to her plants and herself, but now she can’t bear the thought of letting Harley go.
They’re alone except for her plants and Harley’s hyenas, but Ivy doesn’t feel alone. She has everything she needs right here in this little pocket of peace away from the rest of the maddening world. She has everything she needs right here around her, and in her arms. Harley has needed her for a long time, longer than either of them has been willing to admit, but now in the silence of a new night rising, Ivy can finally admit: She needs her too.
Harley stirs as Ivy strokes her bangs. “Red?” she murmurs.
“I’m here, Harley. Sleep, baby.”
“I am, but . . . But you’re not gonna leave me too, right, ever?”
“I’ll always be here with you,” Ivy promises, bends, and kisses her forehead. “For as long as you’ll have me,” she adds, doubt creeping into her voice.
“Good,” Harley says and snuggles deeper, “‘cause I want you forever.”
Ivy smiles. “Then forever it will be.” Forever, she thinks as Harley dozes back asleep, spent with only herself, Harley, her plants, and those crazy dogs who belong to her best friend. She beams. Now that sounds like true paradise!