Sunlight is definitely not Brian Haner’s favourite thing. Especially after a late night of socialising with mindless business associates, made only bearable by copious amounts of alcohol. So when his expensive blackout blinds slide open, letting the midday California sun stream into his room, the only logical thing to do is grab the pillow by him and pull it over his face.
“Good afternoon, Mr Haner.” His secretary, Zacky, says, bright and cheerful as ever.
If he didn’t have a killer ass, Brian would have fired him by now. In fact, he’s pretty certain he has fired him numerous times, Zacky just doesn’t listen.
Brian groans as Zacky places a glass, loudly, by his head.
“Mr Essex and Ms Schmidt’s lawyers have both called. They’ve both rejected your alternative pseudonyms and ask you again to change yours. In their defence, Sunblock and Nazi Jerky are not really going to strike fear into the hearts of the people.” Zacky reads off his iPad, “Mr Stark has sent you the latest StarkTech cell in thanks for locking him in that closet with Mr Rogers last week. I’m not asking and I’m pretty certain you’re not telling.”
Brian waves it all off, nothing of any real interest, burying himself further under the pillow, with a frustrated groan.
“And Shadows called.”
Brian stills, lifting his head, “Shadows?”
Brian can almost hear the smile in Zacky’s voice, “Well, I say he called, rather he called you out on TV again. He’s requested your presence at the Haner Tower this evening.”
Brian rolls onto his back, sits up in the bed. He grabs the pills and water, downing both before rubbing at his eyes.
“You know, surely a text would be an easier way to organize a date.” Zacky offers.
Brian glares across at him.
“Sir.” Zacky adds as an afterthought, throwing a newspaper at Brian’s lap.
“It’s not a date.” Brian says, “It’s a fight to the death. There’s a big difference.”
“I’m sure.” Zacky says, “There’s coffee brewing in the kitchen. Your day suit is hung up in your closet, I went for the grey Armani today. It draws attention to your broad shoulders and away from your puffy eyes. Your other suit is where it always is. Please try to avoid eating donuts in it today, jelly is not easy to get out if you can’t visit a dry cleaner.”
“You’re in a rush.” Brian notes, “Big date?”
“Yes.” Zacky says, “With the people running your company while you’re busy playing super villain. Someone needs to keep Haner Industries afloat.”
Brian smiles, “What would I do without you?”
“Sleep til 4, go out, get drunk, sleep with a random groupie, rinse, repeat.” Zacky smiles back, “Oh and somewhere in there, pine over your superhero boyfriend.”
“No donuts!” Zacky reminds him as he leaves the bedroom.
Brian picks up his paper, looks over the cover, muttering about donuts and pizza as an alternative.
The headline warns citizens of a dangerous villain by the name of Synyster, though has very little to say about why he’s so dangerous, short of causing a very public nuisance. The photo on the cover is of a tall, well built, incredibly handsome man in a grey spandex suit, one which clings to every muscle like a second skin. He’s got a black mask over his eyes and a killer smile on his face.
No wonder Sullivan City’s very own masked hero, Shadows, can’t resist him.
It takes longer than Synyster would like to get to the Haner Tower, traffic is a bitch in Sullivan City, even with the Synmobile, which is in no way just a flashy Audi. Shadows is waiting for him, as are Shadows’ legions of fans (also another reason traffic is such an issue). Luckily the fans aren’t allowed on the roof, which is where Shadows is waiting for him.
He’s facing away from Synyster, which gives the super villain a chance to admire the view of his ass in his tight fitting crimson suit.
“What the fuck are you doing, Synyster?” Shadows says, spinning round to look at Synyster.
He lifts his eyes quickly to look at Shadows face, “Hm?”
“You can’t keep doing this.” Shadows says, jumping down from his ledge to approach the other man.
“Doing what? You called me here!”
Shadows throws a punch at Synyster, who ducks underneath it and counters with a jab to Shadows’ impossibly hard side. Shadows doesn’t even flinch, simply backhands Synyster as he straightens, knocking him to the ground. There’s a loud roar of glee from the crowd as Shadows drops to his knees, straddling Synyster’s hips and pinning his wrists to the ground.
“You need to stop provoking me, Haner.” Shadows hisses at him.
“Well if you answered a call once in a while, I wouldn’t have to!”
“So because I’m busy, you decide a reign of tyranny is the best way to get my attention?”
“Reign of tyranny?” Synyster laughs, “I’ve pulled a few pranks!”
“You released a lion from the zoo.”
“It was a cub!”
“It killed a police officer.”
“Who we later discovered was involved in dealing drugs to kids.” Synyster points out, “It’s win win really.”
Shadows growls in frustration and climbs off Synyster, sitting by him.
“Brian…” He pulls his own mask off, looks across at his friend.
“I got bored.” Brian admits, pulling off his as well, “Do you have any idea how dull it is for me? I have to run a company that I don’t give a fuck about, while you get to go play superhero. Then when I do get to see you, you’re too tired to do anything.”
“That’s no reason to piss off the city.”
“It is when it’s the damn city’s fault.” Brian huffs.
Matt punches him in the arm, “You’re such a fuckin’ brat.”
“Sexually frustrated rich kid, please.” Brian insists, punching him back, “Ah, fuck.”
He pulls his hand away, shakes the pain out.
“Doesn’t matter that we’ve had a moment, still got that whole protective skin deal.” Matt points out, smirking at Brian, “You try and cause me harm, my body multiplies the pain.”
“I hate you.” Brian mutters.
Matt chuckles, pulls Brian to him and presses a kiss to his head.
“How about I come see you tonight? Get Stark and Rogers to look after the city for the night. I think they owe you.” Matt says, “We spend the night together, figure out a way to kill off Synyster for good. Maybe bring in a sexy sidekick for Shadows.”
“Excuse me? I am nobody’s sidekick.” Brian insists, “Why can’t you be my sidekick?”
“Because I’m the one with the powers.” Matt points out.
“So? Batman doesn’t have powers.”
“Batman’s not real.”
“Then I’m going to make him real.” Brian announces, pulling away from Matt and replacing his mask.
“Oh God. Brian…”
Matt watches as his boyfriend gets to his feet.
“Watch out, Shadows.” Synyster announces, loudly, “Because… Deathbatman is coming for you.”
Matt tries to suppress a smile as Brian stands there, glaring down at him.
“You done yet?” Matt asks, after a long moment.
“Um, yeah… just… y’know, no powers, so I need to use the door.” Brian says, relaxing and edging towards the roof exit.
“Should I close my eyes and pretend I don’t see you?” Matt asks, a hint of a smile on his lips.
Brian lets out a fake laugh and runs to the door, muttering under his breath, “Ugh, this exit would be so much cooler if I could fly.”