“I’d give you a seven outta ten,” The clown chimed as he reached down to take Harley’s hand; darkened eyes trained ahead at the approaching Bat, “But Batsy’s the clear winner here.” Since his first plan to lose Batman had failed, the madman needed to turn to his second plan (which still involved the jester, of course.)
Having roughly pulled Harley to her feet, he pushed her ahead so she was stood between himself and Bats. Giving The Joker chance to take several strides back towards the mouth of the alley.
“How about best of three?”
Harley heaved a gasp and kept one hand clapped to the wound as the Joker pulled her up, stumbling on her heel and even more so when she was pushed forwards. It was then that she ignored the bleeding and grabbed for her sledgehammer, taking a swing at the Bat’s head, but it was a useless attempt with how sluggish she felt. The Batman managed to catch the end of the hammer and yanked it out of her hand, throwing it aside, and then attempting to do the same with the jester.
She ducked away too swiftly. If they had anything on the Bat, it was speed, so she quickly made way for the clown to escape the alleyway.
With a twisted smile the clown dropped the batarang into Harley’s hand and followed her gaze up towards the rooftops. A police car whizzing passed briefly cast a red and blue flash of light across the alley and lit up where both clowns were looking.
“Remember,” the madman whispered just loud enough for her to hear, “We don’t want to kill the Bat. Just,” he airily waved his hand, “fatally wound him. Slow him down a little.” With a rough pat on her back, The Joker took a step back from her and fixed his sights back up to the sky.
The harlequin closed gloved fingers around the sleek metal, and when the police vehicle sped past she caught sight of the bat properly. She gripped the bataring tight and waited until the Joker had instructed her and stepped back before she threw her arm back and launched it at the shadow.
Roughly two seconds later (she’d stopped breathing, because she hadn’t heard any impact at all) the same batarang came whizzing back and she wasn’t fast enough, leaping to the side but it still managed to slice a gash right across her shoulder. She swore and stumbled to the ground, one hand clutching at the wound but her attention wasn’t solely focused on it, because the bat had finally jumped down from his hiding place and advanced on the clown.
The madman knew before Harley that the Batman was close. Slipping away from him had been far too easy, so he wasn’t surprised when the jester pointed upwards and signalled towards a black silhouette just above them. It quickly disappeared into the shadows again with a swish of a cape, and for a few moments everything fell silent.
He caught himself standing in front of Harley, almost as if his subconscious had tried to guard her, and promptly took a few steps back from her; narrowly missing the batarang that span passed his arm and embedded itself into the crumbling brick wall behind.
“Well, that was rude,” The Joker nonchalantly drawled as he plucked the metal from the wall and examined it between gloved fingers, “Fancy a spot of target practice, Harls?”
Harley’s gaze never stayed settled, consistently shifting toward any sound- though it wasn’t helpful that police cars sped past every ten seconds or so. It threw her off, made her edgy, and she turned to see the clown stood in front of her. She quirked a brow beneath charcoal greasepaint but she didn’t have time to consider it before the batarang sliced past, releasing a breath through gritted teeth.
A small chuckle left the jester’s lips and she tilted her head a fraction, eyes focusing on the slim blade and she came a little closer to study it. Her attention was only captured by further movement above their heads, as if the bat was leaping to either building next to them.
She held a hand out for the batarang, but she didn’t look at the Joker, eyes fixed solely on where she was certain he was loitering in the dark.
Losing Harley had been a small price to pay to get the Batman off his trail. Sure, she might have come back a little scratched and worse for wear, but he was certain that once he explained that he had no other choice but to leave her behind — for her own safety — she’d forgive him. It had worked, at least, Harley had been the perfect decoy in grabbing Bats’ attention.
Doing as Harley was, the clown slipped a knife from his inner pocket and began to search the back streets. Sticking to the shadows and slowing down whenever the odd car sped passed. He heard the shuffling of feet too, but as his eyes caught sight of that familiar red and black jumpsuit, he assumed his Harley was the source and quickly stepped up behind her.
“You’ve gotta be more quiet, slugger,” the clown hushed, “You never know who you might run in to.”
The blonde yelped at the voice and quickly clasped a hand over her mouth, twirling around to face the Joker with wide, cerulean eyes. Though it was quite obvious who had addressed her in the first place, seeing him had relief washing over her petite frame and she dropped her hand, breathing a sigh.
Her gaze was drawn to the blade in his hand and she opened her mouth to speak before approaching sirens could be heard, so she turned to face the mouth of the alleyway, where she instead felt a rush of air around her, another movement of a cape. She turned back to the clown, lifting a hand to point upwards, mouthing the word, “B-man.”
The sirens wailed after her, flats of her shoes leaving a smack on the concrete as she ran, breathless, clutching a pistol at her side. Ducking into a narrow alley, the red and blue lights flooded the dark space and lit up her face- blooded and bruised beneath the greasepaint. Thankfully, the vehicle sped past without any clue whatsoever, and the harlequin quickly dashed off in the opposite direction once it was out of sight.
She wasn’t sure where he’d gotten to, at what point she managed to scuff the toe of her shoe and stumble over and at what point she saw the tail of a purple trench coat disappear around the corner. By the time she’d gotten up to follow it, he’d scarpered.
Harley retraced her steps, clasping the gun at her front, gloved forefinger pressed lightly against the trigger. She weaved in and out of Gotham’s side streets, attempting to ignore the swish of a cape somewhere above her head as she ducked deeper into the darkness, only to be greeted with shuffling footsteps.
Eventually, she rose from the floor, clutching a bloody baseball bat and beating it against her palm triumphantly. She resisted the urge to shout out her triumph though, spying the search lights that whizzed passed the cracked glass and illuminated the dark room just for a second. Baby-blues narrowed and she crept toward the window, peeking through the murky glass just in time to watch the red and blue lights speed past her vision and onwards down the narrow street. Snickering lightly, Quinn turned on her heel and stalked heavily out of the room, swinging the bat around in her gloved palm.