this dream isn’t feeling sweet we’re reeling through the midnight streets i’ve never felt more alone feels so scary getting old.
You were lost.
It wasn’t your fault, it was dark and Gotham was a big city. It really didn’t help that all the buildings looked the same in such low light, or that you had just moved there a few days before. You moved quickly down the sidewalk, tugging your jacket tighter around yourself and glancing around. It wasn’t safe on these streets at night, you knew that for a fact, so you just wanted to get home.
You froze as you heard the sound of footsteps, your body going rigid. You couldn’t tell if they were getting closer, as they simply echoed throughout the seemingly deserted street. You started walking again, slightly faster this time, but you didn’t make it very far.
A hand clamped over your mouth from behind and a strong arm wrapped around your torso. You were too afraid to even try to scream. The stranger leaned in close to your ear and you could feel their breath on your neck.
You whimpered into their palm, thrashing around in their grip to try and free yourself. It was no use, and it only made them hold onto you tighter.
“Don’t make any noise, and we won’t have any problems, you got it?” They hissed, making you nod and shut your eyes, tears slipping down your cheeks.
“No need to cry, I’m not gonna kill ya…” They feigned sympathy, a maniacal laugh sounding from their throat. “Probably.”
Something about them seemed so familiar, yet you couldn’t put your finger on it. Your brain was too overwhelmed with panic to consider the possibilities. Instead you focused on the fact that you were literally being kidnapped, and would most likely die over the course of the ordeal.
“Let’s go.” The voice said rather gruffly, tugging you down the street.
You were uncomfortably nestled under their arm so they could keep a hand over your mouth, but it was obviously slowly them down. They stopped, and without looking at you said, “If I uncover your mouth, you do not scream. Okay?”
You nodded quickly, and they promptly removed their hand. You obeyed the orders given and dared to look up at them. Their face was mostly concealed by a high collared coat, the dark making it hard to make out the rest of it. They were tall and very broad, so you found it to be in your best interests to just listen to whatever they said. You’d likely have no chance fighting against them.
“Alright. Now let’s go.” They grabbed a hold of your arm and pulled you along behind them, you stumbling to keep up.
Whoever this was, they were giving you quite a lot of leverage. If you weren’t so intimidated, you’d by all means have tried to escape already.
Maybe they didn’t intend on actually killing you after all…
With slightly less worry clouding your judgement, you managed the comb back through your memory, hoping you could remember what about them was so familiar. It wasn’t their voice, you’d remember one that chilling. It couldn’t be their face because you hadn’t seen it yet. Their laugh…surely you’d remember one so haunting…
That was it. You’d heard that laugh, you’d heard it so many times. You knew their laugh so well, because it belonged to one of your best friends. Oh god, it wasn’t…
They stopped, which immediately confirmed your fears. You stumbled to a halt and swallowed hard, your heart in your throat. They turned to face you and pulled the collar down on their jacket, exposing their face.
Your heart dropped. He looked the same, yet somehow, so different. His skin was still pale and his eyes still bright. The freckles that scattered his face were barely visible in the dark, but they were still there. He wore his hair styled up, instead of neatly parted, and he had grown so much since you last saw him.
The thing that chilled you the most was the smile that slowly curled on to his lips. No longer did it evoke happiness in you, because it didn’t resemble that. It was malicious and caused you nothing but fear.
You couldn’t speak. You felt like you were going to throw up, your hand travelling up shakily to cover your mouth. Jerome rolled his eyes, sighing exasperatedly.
“Yeah yeah, get it over with. ’Oh Jerome how could you? You were so sweet, so charming, such a perfect boy’…” He mimicked you quite offensively, still grinning, but it didn’t phase you.
“What the fuck!” You exclaimed, eyes wide and staring up at Jerome with anger and confusion written all over your face.
“Hey hey keep it down!” He whisper-yelled, looking around himself frantically.
“Or what?” You countered, no longer as afraid as before. This was Jerome, you knew him inside out. He wouldn’t dare hurt you.
At least that’s what you thought.
“Or there’ll be a pretty big slash across your pretty little neck.” He spoke through gritted teeth and brandished a blade suddenly. He let the tip touch your throat and you immediately shut up, nodding quickly.
He laughed silently, moving in closer. He pressed slightly harder, making your heart beat insanely fast. Then just as fast as he pulled it out, he flicked the blade back in. His eyes lingered on you a moment too long before he roughly grabbed your wrist again, yanking you down the street.
“God why don’t you just rip my arm off.” You whispered angrily, glaring up at Jerome. Despite the threat he just made, you still felt as if you should question his every move. If he was still as easy to rile up as he used to be, then maybe you could make him angry enough to draw attention to the two of you.
“Believe me, I would.” He muttered, and suddenly all hopes of being saved were diminished. He began to unlock a door.
If he took you inside, it was probably abandoned, meaning there’d be no one to hear you. He pushed it open and stepped away, letting go of your arm. You rubbed it gently and glared at him, but he just presented the doorway to you, as if inviting you in.
“Not like I have much of a choice.” You spit, walking into the front hall of the building. It appeared to be some sort of apartment, but it looked more than abandoned. It was a wreck.
“You’ve got a temper, don’t you?” Jerome tsked, fiddling with the door to lock it again.
“You know, this place is so close to falling apart, I could probably just tap the door and it would fall over.” You rolled your eyes and he threw a sneer over his shoulder at you, before giving up and spinning around.
“Do you know why I brought you here?” He asked, his voice rising to a normal level.
“You wanted to talk to me and you’ve always had a flair for the dramatic?” You guessed, cocking an eyebrow at him. “I mean the knife to my throat was a little extra but-”
“Well I couldn’t exactly ask you to a coffee shop or something considering I’m one of the most high profile criminal figures right now.” He rolled his eyes shaking his head.
“What’d you do rob a bank with that little knife of yours-”
“I killed her.”
You paused mid sentence and just stood there, dumbfounded. “What…”
“I did it. I finally killed her.” He wore a grin that gave off childlike excitement, and it made you feel sick.
“Who did you kill?”
He gave you a look as if it should’ve been obvious. “My mom.”
“Oh god Jerome…” You couldn’t even look at him. It felt like he was a stranger.
When the two of you were younger, he told you his mother beat him. You vowed that as soon as you got the chance to leave the circus, you’d take him with you, away from everything bad. Of course, when the time came, you were unable to bring him along with you. You knew things were bad with him and his mother, but you thought that he would simply get out as soon as possible, and leave it all in the past. You never imagined he’d resort to murder.
“You look less than happy.” He stated, making you widen your eyes and you suddenly go off on him.
“Happy? You expect me to be happy? I don’t see you for 2 years and come to find out you murdered someone, and you want me to be happy?” You yelled at him, and watched the way his tough outer shell crumbled.
He stood there in front of you, his lips parted slightly, looking as if his whole world was falling apart. He stood in front of you as the wounded boy you knew before, and you saw how much you still meant to him, even after all this time.
“I’m free…” Jerome said quietly, and you felt yourself slowly deflating. “You can be too.”
You shook your head in disbelief, staring down at your feet with wide eyes. This wasn’t happening. You looked up at him rather sadly, still slowly shaking your head.
“You’ve lost your mind.” You breathed shakily, and watched the hurt paint his features.
It was his turn to shake his head. He reached out for you, but you were fast in taking a step back. He lowered his hand.
“I thought you’d understand.”
“Understand what, Jerome?” You spat, your hands shaking and your eyes watering. He went to speak but chose against it, instead clenching his jaw and averting his eyes to the floor. You stood in silence, never tearing your eyes away from him.
“I thought you could join me.” He finally spoke, making you glare at him. “We could be a team. We could unstoppable, just you and me. Like it used to be.”
“It can’t be how it used to be, Jerome. Because you’re not you.” You tried to keep your voice steady. He glared right back at you, his face hardening upon hearing your words.
He shook his head roughly, jabbing a finger at you. “I’m still me, you’re the one who changed!” He yelled, startling you. “You used to support me no matter what, now you’re basically telling me to go to hell! News flash Doll, I’ve already been there!” His face went red in anger and you stood shell shocked, unable to speak.
You watched him yank back his jacket and expose his neck. You could see a very prominent scar on his pale skin, and you swallowed hard, letting him go on.
“I literally died, Y/N!” He pointed at the scar. “I got stabbed in the neck by someone I trusted, and some fucking way, I was brought back to life!”
Your eyes went wide, and you filled with confusion, shaking your head slowly. That was impossible. He was crazy. You started to back up slowly, and Jerome didn’t even care, just followed you, still yelling.
“Yeah, you missed a lot!” He laughed, throwing his arms out at his side. “I was running this place! I took over the GCPD, killed the commissioner…” He noticed your change in expression after he said that, and it only made him laugh harder. “Oh yeah, I must’ve forgot to tell you; I killed a whole shit ton of people. For fun!”
You felt your back hit the wall and took a deep breath, processing everything. Your hand covered your mouth to muffle a sob, and you shut your eyes, hearing Jerome let out that horrible laugh you had once loved to hear. You had to get out of there. This wasn’t the boy you used to know so well, this was a maniac.
“I was finally free. I was the one in power.” Jerome’s voice fell to a low tone again, making your panic decrease slightly. “I wanted that again, but this time for both of us. So what do you say, Doll? You with me?”
He looked to you with hopeful eyes, a small smile on his face. His mood had changed so alarmingly fast that you were still reeling from his outburst just moments ago. You refused to look at him, shaking your head and swallowing hard.
“No..” You breathed, his face falling once again. You didn’t wait to see how he reacted, just made a run for it, fumbling with the door for only a second, before you were back out on the street. To your surprise, he hadn’t gone after you. In fact, he remained in the same spot at the end of the hall.
You stood for a only a moment, before turning and running again, in hopes of getting as far away as possible. You were no longer scared, just sad. Jerome was always the better of the two of you. You understood people grew, and changed. Hell, you had done just that. But not like this. He was so bright and full of life, no matter how shitty things were for him at home. Now, you no longer saw him as that beautiful boy you spent hours with talking about absolutely nothing. The boy who you trusted with everything, and the boy who vowed to protect you from any harm.
Say you’ll come find me When I’m dancing in the streets I don’t need money, don’t need sleep Just need your pretty face now
Wedding planning. Joey hated it. He wouldn’t have minded it if he was marrying someone he loved; but being in an arranged marriage that he didn’t want to be a part of had him struggling to find any joy in planning the ceremony. It didn’t help that he’d not been able to get David out of his head, not after their night together. It just put into perspective how much he did love the other boy, and how ridiculous the marriage that Joey’s parents had signed him up for was.