Chapter 1: Oswald Takes the Bullet and Jim Bites It
Jim cried out, horrified, as Oswald threw himself in Jim’s way and took the bullet.
Oswald fell into Jim, knocking him to the ground, and he lay gasping and bleeding across Jim’s body.
He made the way clear for Harvey, who took a shot and dispatched Jim’s assailant.
Jim struggled onto his knees and took Oswald in his arms.
“Oswald, you idiot! Why…?”
Oswald panted and looked up at Jim with misted blue eyes. “I couldn’t…. let them…. hurt you.”
“Oh Oswald….” Jim took off his jacket and pressed it to Oswald’s wound. The bullet had caught him right in the chest. “It’s gonna be ok,” he soothed. Then, “Someone help! Call an ambulance!” he yelled.
He crouched close to Oswald, who was breathing hard and wincing. “Hang on in there, it’s gonna be fine..” he muttered.
“Jim….” rasped Oswald weakly. “It’s ok….really….”
“Shhhhhh, take it easy…” Jim kept pressing on Oswald’s wound. The bleeding was heavy. He pressed harder and harder and kept shouting for help.
People were running all over the place. It was chaos, even though the gunfire had stopped. Harvey rushed over. “What ...did he take a bullet for you?!”
“Yes, for God’s sake can someone get an ambulance?! I dropped my phone…”
“It’s taken care of, I already called.”
“Oh -thanks Harvey. Can you help please? He’s bleeding badly….Shhh, Oswald, stay with me, please!”
Harvey took off his own jacket and together they knelt attempting to staunch Oswald’s wounds.
Oswald struggled to stay conscious, to focus on his lover’s face. Harvey couldn’t mistake the way the two men were looking at each other -but he said nothing.
He’d never seen Jim look so scared!
The ambulance arrived just as Oswald passed out. As his eyes closed, Jim lost control.
“No, Oswald, please! Please don’t…” and he leant down and without shame or hesitation kissed Oswald on the lips. “Don’t leave me, Oswald..” He stroked Oswald’s face and hair frantically. Oswald lay still and didn’t respond. “Oswald...please!” Jim kissed him again.
“It’s ok, he’s still breathing…..we’ll take it from here.” The paramedics picked him up gently and stretchered him away. “He’ll need a blood transfusion….I think the bullet just missed his heart….” Jim followed alongside the stretcher, talking to Oswald all the time. Then he stared dumbfound as the ambulance doors closed and it tore off carrying his little Oswald off to the hospital...and hopefully, survival.
He was covered in Oswald’s blood. So was Harvey. Harvey stood by his side and then laid a hand on Jim’s shoulder. “I’m sure he’ll be ok.”
Jim was shaking. He was in shock. “Harvey..what you just saw…what I said...”
“Never mind that. Are you ok? Do you want to follow him? I’ll give you a lift.”
Jim looked round at Harvey with haunted eyes and gave him a grateful smile. “Yes, please.”
They drove along in silence. Harvey was shocked about what he’d discovered of course - and seeing Jim kiss and tenderly stroke the face of the man they had both despised for so long had blown his mind! - but when all was said and done, Jim was his friend, and if he had suddenly decided to go insane and fall for Oswald Cobblepot - well, then, he’d have to live with that, at least for now, while Jim was clearly in such a traumatised state.
He could hardly believe that that little toerag had been brave and sacrificial enough to do what he’d done! Maybe there was hope for him after all - that is, if he lived….then again, everyone knew that Cobblepot was notoriously difficult to dispatch….
But the look on Jim’s face now...the misery, the angst….the intensity of the pain in his eyes….he hadn’t seen that in a long time. Despite his feelings of incredulity and dismay Harvey knew that Jim wasn’t faking or overstating his feelings. How it happened was beyond him, but no doubt all would be revealed in time.
They pulled into Gotham General.
Jim got out. “Thanks Harv. I’ll take it from here.”
“Yeah - you go back to the station. You’ll need to report back...I’ll call you if I need anything…”
“OK. And Jim…”
“I hope he’ll be ok.”
Jim was a man of few words, but the relief and euphoria he felt to see his little Ozzy’s beautiful blue eyes open and focus on him again was tremendous.
Oswald gave him a cheeky little smirk. “Hey yourself, Detective Gordon.”
“You scared the hell out of me!” Jim leant forward and gave his lover a kiss. Then he reached for his hand and grasped it, holding on to it tightly.
“Well someone had to get you out of trouble! You owe me a favour now Jim Gordon!” Oswald winked.
“Ah I see. You must be feeling better!” Jim squeezed Oswald’s hand emphatically.
He looked lovely lying there - looking all weak, pale and vulnerable….his raven haired beauty!
His little blue-eyed martyr. Jim doubted that he would ever be allowed to forget this - but he didn’t mind. It didn’t matter! All that mattered was that his sexy little psycho, his crazy, cute Cobblepot, was alive and was going to be ok.
“I just wanted to tell you..that I’m serious...about you. And..about us…”
“Oswald, you didn’t need to…”
“I know I didn’t need to. But I wanted to. Jim..I...I..love you…”
“It’s ok Jim. I know you don’t feel the same…”
“No, no, let me finish. You know Oswald, you really must learn to stop interrupting when we’re married….”
Chapter 2: Engaging
After Jim's surprise proposal, Oswald gives his answer and Jim follows up accordingly. Lots of schmaltz with a little comic relief from 'Big Bad Babs' - bless er!
Jim was astounded at himself. He had come out with it, just like that.
Things just got madder and madder - but as he had reflected many times since taking that step across the threshold with his sexy little psycho, he would prefer this feeling of heady madness to one of dull sanity any day!
Oswald was so shocked and incredulous.
“Jim - wha-what did you just say? Did you..did you just actually...propose to me?!”
“Yes, Oswald. I meant to say, ahem….will you marry me?”
“Jim - please don’t tease, I don’t think I could stand it!”
“I’m not teasing, Oswald - I mean it. Well - what d’ya say? D’you think you could stand having a cop for a husband?”
“Oh, Jim - I think you know the answer to that!”
“Well, yeah, I think I do...but I’d like to hear you say it, Oswald.”
“Well in that case - yes...James Gordon...my Mr Police Detective. The answer is yes! I will take you as my husband.”
Oswald struggled to sit up in bed to embrace his lover, being so full of joyous excitement, but he was still too weak and in pain. He grimaced and winced and collapsed back down onto the pillows with a sigh of frustration.
“Hey, take it easy!” Jim scolded gently, “I’ll come to you.” And he rose from his chair by the bedside and knelt down right by Oswald, putting his arms around him. Then he kissed him gently on the cheek. “Thank you,” he said quietly.
Oswald’s tears fell and he stared at Jim with large, glassy eyes.
“Jim - this is like a dream! You have made me so happy!”
Jim wiped Oswald’s tears away and cupped his face in his hands. He kissed him softly on the mouth.
“Ditto,” he grinned.
“Can I help you, sir?”
This scenario should have been so familiar to Jim. He had, after all, already got engaged on two previous occasions. He hoped this would be third time lucky….
He definitely wanted sapphires. They would really set off Oswald’s gorgeous blue eyes.
Oswald had joked that maybe he should get rubies to match his wound, but Jim, of course, hadn’t found this very amusing….
“Erm, yes, ok, thanks…”
“And what is sir looking for?”
“Well...erm, y’see, I just got engaged.”
“Oh, congratulations!” the assistant smiled widely.
“Thanks!” Jim beamed in response.
“So you are obviously looking for an engagement ring.”
“That’s right, yes.” Jim waited for the awkward moment when the assistant asked for the lady’s ring finger size, to which he would, of course, say, “Actually it’s for a gentleman,” and wait for the awkward silence, but this issue didn’t present itself.
“Do you know what kind of ring you are looking for? I mean, gold? Platinum? What kind of stone?”
“Could you just show me a selection?”
Jim suddenly started to feel panicked. He of course wanted to get Oswald the best, no expense spared if he could, but his meagre salary would be very unlikely to stretch to platinum or an expensive gem. He visualised taking out an extensive loan - or, he joked with himself, even being forced to turn to crime! But no, he would find a way of affording it legitimately, somehow.
He flinched and turned round, his reflections disturbed, to find - of all people…
“Barbara. Hello.” His heart sank, along with the tone of his voice. She would be here!
Barbara flashed her canines at him in a wide, vampiric smile. “What are you doing here? Buying me an expensive gift to say sorry for jilting me?” She gave a manic laugh and poked him playfully on the arm.
“No. What are you doing here?” Jim replied flatly.
“Oh...nothing..I was just in here window shopping! Then I saw something I really liked..and came on over!” She winked and looked over him in her feral, suggestive manner.
“Ohhhhh - Jim! Really? I didn’t know you still cared!””
Jim’s heart sank even further as the assistant brought across the selection of rings and Barbara spied them with her beady eyes.
“Oh Jim - yes, of course I’ll marry you!” she squealed, and Jim shot an embarrassed look at the assistant, shaking his head. “Not my fiance!” he mouthed, then touched his temple meaningfully, as Barbara continued to pore over the tray of jewellery with fascinated eyes.
“Barbara..” began Jim severely, and she looked up and shrugged casually, then laughed. “It’s ok - I know they’re not for me..silly! But..I wonder who?” She bit her finger as if thinking to herself.
But before he could answer, she flounced off dramatically as was her wont, shooting a parting goodbye as she went, and giggling knowingly to herself. Jim apologised to the assistant, who was pretty blase as he had ‘seen it all before, sir, don’t worry.”
Jim knew that Barbara would find out about Oswald without asking him! But he was almost sorry to miss the chance to tell her himself, just to see the expression on her face.
He remembered what Oswald had said about having their first public kiss in front of her….now that Harvey knew, and now he was going to marry Oswald, then there was no reason for him to keep this secret any more. They could be seen out in public together! They could touch each other, kiss one another, without hiding away….and ‘Barnes can kiss my ass,’ thought Jim, ‘he’s not going to lay a finger on my fiance and he can’t do anything to me! I am going to marry the King of Gotham and there isn’t a damned thing he - or anyone else - can do about it!’
Chapter 3: Two Treasures
Jim presents two precious gifts to his little Cobblepot
Here is the link to the second gift (or something like it):
Warning: Sentiment overload!
“The invitation….you ...kept it!”
Jim was running out of ways to keep his bored little Cobblepot occupied. Or at least, distracted.
He was still confined to bed at the hospital as he wasn’t yet ready to be discharged. However clever, quick-minded Cobblepot had read all the books from the hospital library trolley and was devouring all the books Jim had brought in for him. Nothing seemed to satisfy his eager, restless brain.
He had wanted Gabe to bring him in work, but Jim had refused to allow that.
“Listen, Oswald. When the doctors say rest - they mean rest! NOT work. You’ll just have to be more patient.”
“I just want to go home. And...I feel so lonely without you at night.” Oswald gave Jim his glassy-eyed stare.
“Yeah, I know - I miss you too.” Jim’s heart almost stopped. That look never failed to move him.
He scratched his ear and frowned. What was he to do? He wanted his sexy little psycho back, but he had been injured badly and had lost a lot of blood, and so needed rest and recuperation.
He had taken the crumpled-up invitation in his pocket. He had wanted to share something with his soulmate. Something secret, intimate, and revealing about his feelings for his new fiance. Sentiments he had denied for so long….but had always been there. Something to make up for the lousy way he had treated him back then….
“Yeah, I kept it.” He shrugged, as if to say, “Go figure.”
“Oh, Jim. That is so….sentimental of you….” Oswald smiled coyly, batting his eyelashes.
“Well, Oswald - to be honest - at first, I screwed it up and threw it into the bin…”
“Oh,” Oswald said stiffly, his smile tightening. “Well, that was rude!”
“No, Oswald, let me finish. What I was about to say was…at the end of the day, I fished it out again. I didn’t know why at the time. I know I never turned up to your opening night and I’m sorry. I know I was a right asshole for not being there - when you clearly needed me. I guess….I guess deep down I knew it was wrong and wanted to have a keepsake….each time I got this out and looked at it, I was reminded that I felt guilty about letting you down.”
Oswald’s face puckered a little. “Well Jim - that was a very pretty speech! I am touched….but anyway, I can’t lie to you Jim - it stung. I came down to the station especially to give you that invitation by hand. You were the only one I did that for, y’know.” Oswald batted his eyelashes again and pursed up his lips peevishly.
“OK, OK - I get the point, Oswald. I am touched that you made such a special effort for me. Really.”
And to seal the deal, he came forward and pressed his mouth softly and fleetingly against Oswald’s. On contact, Oswald closed his eyes and sighed and his lips opened up into a smile.
“That’s better, you’re smiling again,” said Jim.
Jim knelt down beside Oswald and stroked his cheek lightly with the back of his hand.
“I remember, the excitement on your face when you saw me,” he said quietly. “You couldn’t wait to present me with that invitation. And I just treated you like crap. I made the light in your eyes go out. I am sorry. I really, really regret doing that to you.”
“Jim, Jim, you know I forgive you.” Oswald returned the softness of Jim’s look and tone. Jim inwardly sighed.
“Anyway, Mr Police Detective - do you remember that I told you then that you would come to me? And…. well, here you are!” He shrugged and his feline smile returned, his eyes sparkling with triumph.
“Yeah. I guess I eventually saw the error of my ways.” Jim was eating a large slice of humble pie with a huge dollop of cream. And Oswald was licking off the cream...and enjoying it!
Then suddenly Oswald’s smile faded and his blue gaze became misty and reflective.
“I sometimes...well, I mean, often….think that this all must be a dream, Jim. I will wake up and you and I won’t be..you and I. It won’t be ‘us’. It’ll just be little old me again on my own and you working against me.”
Jim frowned with bewilderment. “Hey, mister, what brought this on?”
“Oh..I just get a little insecure at times that’s all.” Oswald sniffed and passed his hand through his hair with a quick, nervous motion.
“Well don’t. It’s not just a dream - it’s real. And I won’t abandon you.”
“Yeah, of course I promise.”
Jim took hold of Oswald’s hand. He placed the crumpled invitation inside Oswald’s palm and then closed Oswald’s fingers around it.
“Do you remember when you did this to me? Now I’m returning the gesture. When you feel like I might let you down - just get out this lovely invitation with the umbrella on and look at it.”
“Yes, I remember,” Oswald beamed broadly, nodding vigorously. “This is very...well, poetic of you Jim!” His eyes shone with pleased surprise.
“I guess your way with words really is rubbing off on me!” Jim grinned.
“Yes, it must be! Anyway, thank you so much Jim. I will treasure this. And I will do as you ask. Unless, that is, of course...I should happen to throw it away!” He wrinkled up his nose and chuckled mischievously.
Jim laughed. “I guess I asked for that!”
“You know, Detective Gordon, you do look handsome when you’re humble!”
“Do I? Well, thank you Mr Penguin. And you look sexy when you’re smug!”
“Touche. I like it!”
“Good. You were meant to. Erm..Oswald…”
“Seeing as you mentioned ‘treasure’….well, there’s something else I’d like you to have.”
“Oh?” Oswald was intrigued. He sat forward, gazing at Jim curiously. “And what would that ‘something else’ be, Mr Police Detective? Surely you can’t mean to top what you just gave me!”
“Ha ha! No, c’mon, Oswald, I’m serious.”
“So was I! Anyway, do get on with it Jim, the suspense is killing me!”
Jim fumbled inside his other pocket. He was suddenly feeling a little nervous. He brought out the box.
It was a small square box with rounded edges, trimmed with sky blue velvet.
Oswald’s eyes got huge and flashed like blue lightning.
“Jim...Jim...is it..is that what I think it might be?” His hands were trembling with manic excitement.
Jim just glanced at him, smiled and flicked the lid of the box open. His hands were a little unsteady now and he hoped he wouldn’t mess up.
Jim was already kneeling, but wanted to do this just right. He had to be on one knee for this. So his shifted his position slightly, then presented the open box to Oswald. He looked up into Oswald’s wide open eyes, taking in his lover’s adorable expression. He swallowed down the lump in his throat before speaking.
“As I didn’t do this properly the other day….Oswald Chesterfield Cobblepot….will you….”
“Yes, yes, of course I will, silly!” cut in Oswald excitedly, clapping his hands with glee. “Oh, Jim!”
Jim noticed with amusement the startling contrast between his new fiance’s sweetly excitable tone and his ex-fiancee’s high-pitched squeal. Oswald’s voice possessed a soft, husky quality that Barbara’s sadly lacked.
Jim took the ring from its box. Oswald gave a little gasp and then offered his shaking hand for Jim to put on the ring. Jim took his hand and then ceremoniously slid the gold band with its sparkling sapphire stone onto Oswald’s trembling finger. “Thank God, it fits!” he thought.
Jim had been sneaky. He had waited until Oswald had gone to sleep after taking his pain killing medication and then carefully done the old trick of tying string around Oswald’s finger to get his ring size.
“This is...just beautiful, Jim. Thank you!” Oswald turned his hand this way and that to see how the gem caught the light and sparkled.
“Glad you like it!” Jim cleared his throat.
“Like it? I love it, James Gordon, and I love you - not necessarily in that order!” Oswald smirked. “The stone will go perfectly with my blue brocade tie.”
“And your eyes,” Jim remarked, playing with his own tie distractedly.
Oswald beamed. “Thank you for noticing that, Mr Police Detective! Anyway, you can get up now. You have knelt before the King of Gotham long enough! Arise, Sir James!”” he announced playfully. He reached out and ruffled Jim’s hair affectionately.
Jim bowed his head, gladly playing along, before he got to his feet. He really did feel like a knight in shining armour. He reflected that it had cost him nearly a king’s ransom to afford that ring, and he would be paying for it for a good while, but it was worth it to see the expression on his gorgeous fiance’s face. And he loved to see that the sapphire matched Oswald’s eyes so perfectly.
He would have to share with Oswald what had happened with Barbara at the jeweller’s. It was bound to make him laugh. He had at first thought that the idea of kissing his new fiance in front of his old one was a little over the top, but now...now he had had that encounter with Barbara, he was sorely tempted to go through with it.
Perhaps when Oswald was better - hopefully sooner rather than later - he would orchestrate something with his sexy little mischief maker. After all, Oswald did have rather a flair for being dramatic….
Chapter 4: Fallout
Jim faces the music and takes drastic action
“A little raven haired beauty! Ahhh, now I get it!”
“What?!” Jim stared back at Harvey and frowned.
“A little raven haired beauty. That WOMAN you told me about. It was Cobblepot!”
Jim shrugged and raised his eyebrow. “You got me. Well done, Harv.”
Jim looked away and pretended to be looking through some evidence. Another sword-wielding assassin in broad daylight? What were the chances in Gotham?
He couldn’t help feeling distracted. He kept thinking about his ‘little raven haired beauty’ lying in that hospital bed - no doubt feeling bored and acting fractious from being alone, and with nothing to keep him out of mischief.
He wondered if Gabe had been sneaking work in for him to do now Jim’s back was turned….
Oswald was being discharged tomorrow, though, as his wound was much, much better, so that at least was something to look forward to. He had so missed having Oswald’s warm, fragrant, slender body to hold at night. His bed had never quite seemed so cold.
“I should’ve twigged it.”
“Why would you? We were careful….”
“Oh yeah, you were careful all right. But now I think back, I did notice the way he looked at you that once, all lovelorn, and you looked like you didn’t mind one bit!”
“When was that?”
“Oh, a time ago. I thought I was imagining stuff, hell, I hoped I was! But...obviously not.” Harvey pushed his hat back, scratched his beard and shook his head slowly.
“It’s ok, Jim. I’m not being judgemental but…..Jesus, Jim, what the hell are you thinking?!”
“Harvey - no!” Jim flashed a warning at Harvey with his deep blue eyes.
“Jim, for God’s sake….”
“Harv - I’m warning you - you’re my partner and I really, really value your friendship, but please don’t push it - ok?”
“OK, OK...sorry...look, I don’t like you being upset with me Jim. And….if you’ve fallen for Cobblepot then there’s not a damn thing I can do about it, I know that. But...you gotta see it from my point of view. This is a huge deal for me Jim! I just can’t understand…”
“Harv - I’m going to marry Oswald.”
“Whaa-what?!” Harvey stood open mouthed and transfixed. Then he laughed. “Ahhh, I get it! You wanna shock me into silence….”
“I’m serious. I bought a ring. We’re engaged.” Jim put his hands on his hips to show he was earnest.
“Holy Mother!” Harvey gasped. “I think I need to lie down...or throw up...or both!”
“Well, Harv, if that’s what you need to do, that’s up to you….but it won’t change my mind. I love Oswald and we’re getting married, end of story.”
“Jim, listen to yourself. Have you lost your senses?”
“I can hear myself Harv - loud and clear - and no, I haven’t lost my senses. I’ve come to them. Sorry Harv, but I can’t help the way I feel….”
“Ohhh God. This is not happening….it’s just….not….happening….”
Harvey turned and rushed away, ignoring Jim’s pleas for him to come back, and then kept walking until he was out of the building and on the street. He took deep breaths, inhaling the warm, grimy city air. He felt nauseous. The bile rose in his throat and he swallowed it down hard.
First that Taran Tula woman all cow-eyed over Cobblepot, and now Jim! What the hell was going on in this city?!
This just couldn’t be real...it was a dream...no, a nightmare! He would wake up any moment and Jim would be all back to normal - despising Cobblepot and all he stood for…..
Jim walked up to Barnes’ office door and knocked hard.
“Come in,” Barnes called from inside.
Jim went in and closed the door. There was something he needed to say - and do - before he lost his nerve…..
The GCPD had been all he’d known for so long.
Now he had deliberately turned his back on it. Given in his resignation. Crazy but true. Maybe a new leaf was needed….
Barnes had at first been perplexed and bemused about his reason.
“You’re leaving to get married? Erm...Jim….congratulations but..cops....well, people in general....don’t usually leave their jobs to get married….”
“I’m marrying Oswald Cobblepot.”
So now, he needed to find another job..one he was fitted for but that didn’t involve the GCPD.
Well, there was always private detective work…. or maybe he could even do a spot of bounty hunting. He was sure that would turn on his sexy little psycho. He had told him that he had found the leather jacket and stubble was rather arousing….that one time he had seen Jim in that guise….
He had to get something. After all, that engagement ring wouldn’t pay for itself! And he couldn’t ask Oswald to pay for his own ring, no matter how much money he had in the bank….
Chapter 5: Two Four Letter Words
Oswald comes home and is pampered rotten by Jim. Jim tries to talk shop but Oswald has other ideas.
Two Four Letter Words.
“Oh, Jim, of course I understand about your work. I AM your work!”
Oswald grinned impishly and took a bite of the honey-dripping toast Jim had presented him with, along with the sweet, strong black coffee Jim knew his little gangster loved.
“Well, that’s very understanding of you, Oswald, but….”
“Now now, Jim...let’s not spoil our breakfast by talking shop!” Oswald put down his slice of toast and stroked Jim’s unruly strands of hair away from his face. “There are much better things to talk about. AND do!”
Jim was sitting on the edge of the bed, drinking his own coffee. He had taken his little Ozzy breakfast in bed.
“You are spoiling me, Mr Police Detective. Do keep it up!” he had been told seductively by his velvet-voiced little villain.
He had been trying to pluck up courage to tell Oswald about his resignation from the GCPD. He had begun with, “Oswald - I know you probably don’t like me working for the GCPD….”
He was hoping that the breakfast, along with that sentence, might serve as a segway into a conversation that would then lead to his little ‘confession’. He wasn’t sure how Oswald would take the news. Maybe he would be pleased - after all, he had said that he was scared deep down that the GCPD would take Jim away from him. But maybe he would rather have Jim at the GCPD to serve his own purposes. He was a complex man, and that was one of the things, ironically, that he loved about him.
“OK, then what do you want to talk about - or do - Mr Penguin?” He decided to play along and not push it. The sight of those sparkling blue eyes smiling so knowingly at him just made him feel weak.
“Well, James - the doctors have told me that I can resume all normal physical activity now.” Oswald winked and smiled a wide, feline smile.
“Is that so?” Jim put his coffee mug down on the bedside table. He reached out and touched Oswald’s lips, drawing his finger across his favourite man’s mouth and feeling the stickiness of the honey left behind on them.
Then Jim licked his finger slowly. “Mmmmm, sweet!” he said.
Oswald’s eyes got exceptionally big and bright. Jim noticed him swallow hard.
He grasped Jim’s hand, placed it back to his lips, and then opened his mouth, guiding Jim’s sticky finger inside slowly. Then he began to suck on Jim’s finger, closing his eyes and humming with deep satisfaction.
“Ooh!” exclaimed Jim, feeling his face and body flush with intense excitement. The feel of his lover’s soft, warm mouth sucking on his finger and the expression on his face made him...well, want to do stuff to him. Bad stuff! He felt hard in between and so wanted to do something about it.
But he didn’t want to hurt him. He had to be gentle! He had to restrain himself..rein in his feelings, just a little. Despite Oswald’s reassurances about his health, he still had some misgivings.
“The bullet just missed his heart.” He remembered the paramedics saying that as they stretchered his little Ozzy’s motionless body away. He remembered all the blood. He recalled Ozzy’s eyes closing, his own desperate pleas for his lover to stay with him….
“Oswald - stop!”
Jim suddenly withdrew his finger from Oswald’s warm, soft mouth.
“What’s the matter, Jim?” pouted Oswald, plainly deeply disappointed. He gave Jim his best glassy-eyed stare.
“I….don’t want to hurt you, Oswald.”
“Hurt me? But I thought I told you, my Mr Police Detective. You can’t hurt me!” Oswald smiled softly and stroked Jim’s cheek. “And..well, I missed you! And I want to show you how much.”
“I missed you too Oswald….” He put his arms around Oswald’s neck and pressed his forehead against Oswald’s.
“I...I’m scared Oswald,” he told him. “I keep seeing it. Seeing you. Keep seeing you lying there in the street. Bleeding. Passing out. I thought I was gonna lose you!”
“Oh, Jim. You won’t lose me! I keep telling you that….”
“Yeah, yeah, I know you do.” Jim raised his head and stared back at Oswald with haunted eyes. “But it doesn’t stop me being afraid.”
“Hey, shush now, Mr Police Detective.” Oswald hugged Jim close. He pressed his lips to Jim’s ear.
“I will live forever just for you!” he whispered. “That’s a promise, James Gordon!”
Jim squeezed him tightly. “I’ll hold you to that, Oswald Cobblepot.” He pushed Oswald away gently and grinned at him. “Sorry, I got a bit needy there didn’t I? That’s not like me.”
“It’s nothing to be ashamed of, Jim. I’m touched that you care so much! Tell you what Jim - why don’t you just come back to bed with me and cuddle? Unless, of course..you need to get off to work any time today?” Oswald arched his eyebrow quizzically.
“Erm - work? Nahhh - they’re not expecting me in today,” Jim scratched behind his ear awkwardly. “Barnes - erm, gave me the day off.”
“Oh he did, did he? Was it because of me?” Oswald beamed meaningfully.
“Erm, yes, sort of,” Jim said, sort of truthfully.
“Well - I must thank Captain Barnes for being a model employer next time I see him…”
“Oh, that won’t be necessary,” cut in Jim quickly. “Right, mister - does that offer of cuddles in bed still stand?”
Oswald smirked triumphantly. “Of course!” He lifted up the covers. “Get in Jim!”
Jim took off his robe and slid inside. They both settled down. He snuggled up to Oswald and put his arms around him protectively.
“Mmmmm, that’s better, my sexy police detective!” Oswald purred, nuzzling in close against Jim.
Jim inhaled Oswald’s sensual scent, felt Oswald’s warm body close up against his. He was wearing pure silk pyjamas and the material felt soft and comforting against Jim’s skin. He sighed deeply.
“I love you, Ozzy,” he murmured drowsily.
“Oh Jim - you called me Ozzy!”
“Oh….erm….yeah….I did didn’t I? Do you mind?”
“Mind? Why would I mind? You said it! And....and...you said you loved me too….”
“Have I not said that before either?”
“No. You’ve said it not in so many words..but not the...actual words.”
“Awww, well, y’know...I’m not always so great with that kind of stuff….”
“I know, Jim. That’s what makes it all the more meaningful.”
Oswald peered up into Jim’s eyes solemnly.
“Yes...Ozzy?” Jim gazed lovingly back.
“Don’t think I don’t feel scared too. When I threw myself in the way of that bullet...all I could think was, that you were going to die….and that just wouldn’t do, Jim dear. It wouldn’t do at all….”
Chapter 6: Climbing with Cobblepot
Ozzy makes plans for his future husband, who hasn't yet confessed to him about his resignation from the GCPD....
Climbing with Cobblepot
This time, Oswald stayed awake while Jim snoozed on and off in his arms.
Jim was in a state of emotional exhaustion and had not realised it until he had gone back to bed and into the warmth of his lover’s arms. Now it had hit him like a freight train and had taken its toll.
Oswald loved watching Jim sleep. He had done that the very first ‘morning after the night before’, after their first time together. The sight of Jim’s tousled head and serenely closed eyes had made him feel on top of the world. And this had even topped the moment when he had stood looking down on his city, crying, “I’m the King of Gotham!” Now, he was the king of this man’s heart. Maybe that sounded corny but he couldn’t deny the truth of it.
Oswald had spent so much time lying on his back in a hospital bed - which had, in the latter days of his recovery, bored him absolutely rigid, as well as making him sorely frustrated and lonely without having Jim beside him. But it had also given him time to take stock of all that was most important to him. And top of the list of priorities now - naturally - was Jim and their future together.
He was so ambitious for his fiance - even more so than before they had got engaged. He had already made himself a success with his wealthy empire, and now he was keen to ensure that he achieved the same level of success for his future husband.
After all, marriage was all about sharing, right? And equality. What was his was Jim’s..and vice versa.
He reflected on what Jim’s previous fiances had tried to do for him. Barbara and then Lee had both tried to push Jim up the ladder (Barbara pushing a lot harder of course), whereas he, Oswald Cobblepot...he would carry him! And he would be more than glad to do it.
He suddenly recalled what Jim had said as he had carried him over the threshold and into his bed for the first, and thankfully not the last time.
“You are so easy to lift!”
No, Jim would be no burden….no burden at all.
He had big plans for his police detective. Big plans! He would see to it that Jim succeeded and rose to the top. Together, they would be unstoppable….the master criminal and his mister police commissioner.
Yes, he knew for sure that Jim had earned and deserved that status, and he would be more than willing to give fate a helping hand. Nothing was too much trouble where Jim was concerned. And then they could work together. Oh, the joy, the endless possibilities…..
Oswald’s smile widened and he sighed happily, squeezing Jim. He couldn’t wait to share his hopes and dreams with him.
Jim stirred in response and started to wake up, his sleepy eyes gradually opening and focussing on Oswald’s grinning face. He yawned and shifted a little, but not so much as to break Oswald’s hold on him.
He grinned back.
“Hey Ozzy. How long have I been out for?” He came forward and kissed Oswald’s smiling mouth.
Jim noticed that there was still a faint taste of honey on his lover’s lips. “As if they were never sweet enough!” he thought.
“Well, you were in and then you were out, on and off, for quite a while, James.” Oswald’s smile softened.
“Was I?” Jim yawned again and stretched himself hard, and Oswald regretfully released him. “What time is it?”
Jim’s eyes were heavy with sleep and his head felt quite fuzzy. He had slept but it had been a restless slumber - full of strange dreams that he could barely now remember much about. He felt vaguely unsettled about something, but he couldn’t exactly put his finger on what it was. He had a strange taste in his mouth.
“Don’t worry about the time….” began Oswald, but then Jim broke away, saying, “Anyway, I need to go to the bathroom. Won’t be long!”
Oswald watched intently as his man left their bed and walked off to the bathroom, stark naked. He ogled Jim’s bare butt with its firm little cheeks and admired the wide shape of his strong shoulders and slim body. He knew that Jim had some fine downy hair on his chest and would be admiring that when his fiance came back from his little jaunt to the restroom...as well as the other fine attributes that he now knew for certain that his man possessed.
Barbara and Lee just didn’t know what they were missing. They couldn’t do, or one of them at least would still be with him. Their loss was definitely his gain….
Oswald suddenly remembered how Lee had managed to insult him to his face when she had called him a ‘depraved sociopath’ right in front of him in a heated exchange with Jim. Then afterwards, they had come to a truce when he had shaken Lee’s hand like a gentleman and told her not to think too badly of him. He had been so magnanimous and this had been in a large part because of Jim.
“We are what we are,” he had told her, and she had smiled in begrudging acknowledgment and shaken his hand. This had meant a lot to him at the time because of seeking Jim’s good opinion.
If only he could talk to her now! He would tell her: “We are what we are, Lee. And what I am is your ex-fiance’s fiance!”
Maybe she wouldn’t care, not now, not after all that had come to pass between her and Jim - but it would sure make him feel vindicated!
He reached over and grabbed Jim’s bedside alarm clock. It was nearly midday. He was hungry again, having left half of his breakfast during his unfinished shenanigans with Jim. His stomach started growling.
He picked up the plate with the half round of cold, honey-soaked toast and began eating.
Then Jim’s mobile phone, which Jim had left on the other bedside table, started to vibrate.
Oswald glanced towards the door. There was no sight or sound of Jim.
He knew he shouldn’t, but…..
He reached over and picked up the phone. It had stopped vibrating but there was a message on it. It was from Harvey.
Well, they were nearly married now, and married people didn’t have secrets from one another - right?
So Oswald quickly opened up the message.
“Jim. What the hell are you thinking? You can’t resign! Call me asap!” he read.
Chapter 7: Oswald is Magnanimous
Oswald forgives Jim for meaning well.
Song to play with this chapter: I'm Your Man (Leonard Cohen - from the album I'm Your Man)
Oswald is Magnanimous
Oswald’s response wasn’t what Jim had hoped for, although he had suspected that this might happen.
When he had returned from the bathroom Oswald had stood there, in his black silk pyjamas, and had dramatically presented the phone screen to him with its message - and his heart had almost ceased to beat.
“Resigned? What is the meaning of this, Jim?”
Jim had felt exposed as well as naked.
“I thought you’d be pleased.” He went and grabbed his robe from off the bed, where he had thrown it that morning, and wrapped himself in it quickly as he spoke, but never took his eyes away from his lover’s indignant gaze.
“Pleased? Pleased, how, may I ask?” Oswald was tight-lipped and his eyes were on fire. “You might have told me before we got to cuddling!”
“I know, I know..I tried to tell you. Oswald, I wanted to show you...I wanted to show you that you mattered more to me than the GCPD.”
Oswald’s tight lips loosened - just a little. He sighed.
He rolled his eyes and gestured skywards. “Oh, Jim….Jim….what am I going to do with you?”
Then his mouth relaxed even more. He smiled. “Come here, my ex-Mr Police Detective,” he sighed deeply. He opened his arms.
“Oswald,” Jim sighed, highly relieved. He went to Oswald’s waiting embrace. Once inside those arms, he just didn’t want to come out.
He knew second chances were not in Oswald’s makeup and he was getting let off lightly. And he was glad. So glad.
“I’m sorry, Oswald,” he rasped, into his little gangster’s shoulder. He had lovely shoulders, he reflected. They were good and broad for such a slightly-built man….
He got squeezed in reply.
“We will figure something out. We’ll get you back in. You have to be there, Jim….you know you have to be….”
Chapter 8: Make Up in his Makeup
The kingpin and his cop kiss and make up. Contains sexiness, schmaltz and angst.
Make Up in his Makeup
“That black silk….erm, looks good on you, Oswald.” Jim cleared his throat. He stroked his hands down Oswald’s arms and down to his hands, feeling the contrast between the cool softness of the pyjama material and the warmth of the arms inside.
“Hmmm, thank you, Mr Police Detective. If you’re trying to get round me by flattery, you are succeeding.” Oswald smiled smoothly and gripped Jim’s hands firmly.
“You got me,” Jim shrugged. He was relieved to be ‘let off the hook’ by his sexy little psycho, even though they both knew that Jim had acted for the best.
“Well, James….I think it’s time to kiss and make up now - don’t you?” He squeezed Jim’s hands. His ice blue eyes stared at Jim with intensity...his pupils were dilated too….and his smile widened slowly and provocatively.
This made Jim’s heart fibrillate....and other parts of him spring into action. He returned the pressure to Oswald’s hands.
“Yeah,” he grinned. “Kiss and make up sounds VERY good to me!”
They threw their arms around each other and kissed fervently. Jim’s wet, hungry mouth almost devoured Oswald’s sweet, velvet-soft lips.
It had been so long….and their longing was so intense….
They felt each other’s rapidly mounting desire as their bodies got closer.
Jim pulled away, breathing heavily. “Oh God, Oswald…” he gasped “I missed this so much, goddamit! You are so...frickin’.... sexy !”
“Oh, Jim….” Oswald desperately tugged apart the belt on Jim’s robe and pulled it open. Jim flung it onto the floor and Oswald stared open mouthed at what he had been denied all those weeks...through all those long, lonely nights….
“Quick, quick, Jim, I can’t wait much longer!” he panted impatiently.
“Yeah, yeah, OK...…” Jim’s shaking fingers were fumbling with Oswald’s pyjama jacket buttons, in his strong need to look at what was inside that soft black silk.
“Oh Jim...here...let me help you...” Oswald was so pent up that he almost tore off the remaining buttons in his need to get things moving along.
“Thanks!” rasped Jim gratefully. He felt blessed that Oswald’s hands were so graceful, and he couldn’t wait to experience again what amazing things they could do….
Oswald threw off his jacket and it fell to the floor, completely exposing his torso. Now to get these pyjama bottoms off and get completely naked, he thought eagerly….
Jim’s initial look of delight at seeing Oswald’s revealed upper body changed dramatically as he caught sight of the scar on Oswald’s chest. There it was...the small ring of ragged newly-healed flesh where the bullet had made its entry into his lover’s body.
The shock of seeing it stopped Jim in his tracks. He stood and stared forlornly at the evil red blight on Oswald’s otherwise flawless white skin.
“What’s the matter, Jim?” Oswald was just about to pull down his pyjama trousers, and then noticed Jim’s aghast expression. Oswald was so filled - and full - with sexual desire, especially now Jim was standing before him naked…..and he didn’t want anything to interrupt his lovemaking. He wanted Jim so much it hurt..literally…..but the look on Jim’s face concerned him.
“That….that there….” Jim reached out and gently touched the place with his trembling hand. Jim’s voice suddenly sounded small, like a helpless child’s.
This was one big bucket of iced water! The mood had been changed in the blink of an eye.
Oswald glanced down, his eyes following the line of Jim’s finger, until his eyes rested on where it was pointing to. “Oh, that,” he said dismissively. “I’d forgotten all about that!”
“Forgotten?!” Jim almost wept. He wished he could forget….
He leant down and carefully and tenderly pressed his lips to the livid ring of skin. He was filled with a feeling that he couldn’t quite put into words. Oswald’s body quivered slightly and he gave a little gasp at his touch.
Then Jim found the three-word phrase he’d been searching for. The words he thought he’d never, ever utter about Oswald - and especially not to his face....
“You’re my hero,” he said, sounding far away and unreal. He put his arms around Oswald’s slim waist, bowed his head humbly and laid it against Oswald’s breast. He heard and felt his lover’s heart beating fast and strong inside. His own heart was in his mouth.
Oswald had been startled - and very disappointed - when Jim had paused his actions, interrupting the lovemaking he had so been looking forward to, but had then felt Jim’s tender treatment and heard the tone of his voice, and his heart had raced with a different kind of passion. His arms encircled Jim’s naked body lovingly.
Oswald gave a heavy sigh. He felt humbled.
“A hero, you say,” he murmured, almost as if to himself. “I could never be a hero! I will always be a villain.” He kissed Jim’s crown.
Jim lifted his head and stared at Oswald with quiet pride in his deep blue eyes.
“Oswald - you almost died for me. You were prepared to die for me! That makes you a hero in my book,” he asserted strongly.
Oswald felt a lump come to his throat. He swallowed it down forcefully. His eyes felt very wet, too. He blinked hard and fast.
“Well, thank you Jim. That means a lot to me. And on that subject...next time you feel like being a hero on my behalf….please….make sure you ask me first, right?” Oswald’s tone was stern but his raised eyebrow and shining eyes were playful.
“Yeah, OK, Oswald. Anything you say,” Jim smiled with tacit understanding.
“Good. Glad we are clear on that, Mr Police Detective.” Oswald’s dimples grew and his eyes flashed like blue lightning.
“Yeah, me too. And..erm...Oswald…”
“Same goes for you too!”
“Touche, Jim, touche,” Oswald conceded, with a wry smile. “And now, James Gordon...after all that soul-searching, are you ready to have a little fun?”
Chapter 9: First the Fallings Out - Then the Makings Up (A Tribute to Elke Sommer)
Oswald and Jim enjoy the afterglow. Ozzy does some soul-searching and prepares to make plans for his beloved police detective.
This chapter has a cross-reference to the character Taran Tula, female anti-hero of the story Cobblepot's Comfort: The Penguin and the Spider Woman, which forms Part 1 of The Cobblepot Chronicles. Oswald formed a platonic attachment to Taran but she left him suddenly and mysteriously. The reason will be explained at some point....
First the Fallings Out - then the Makings Up…. (a tribute to Elke Sommer )
“Well! That was….well….worth waiting for....”
Oswald lay on his back, his skin flushed and sweating, the glow in his afterglow not yet having dwindled.
Jim lay on his side with his arm across Oswald. He stroked Oswald’s left arm and then reached down and grasped his hand. Oswald knew his fiance was feeling for the ring with its sapphire stone, which he had put there and that was waiting for the moment when a plain gold band would become its close companion. He wondered if that would be any time soon.
“I aim to please!” Jim grinned. He squeezed Oswald’s hand.
“Perhaps you would like me to reciprocate?” Oswald looked at Jim with hopeful anticipation.
“Erm, well, maybe later, Oswald. I think that’s enough excitement for one day. You need to rest now.”
“That’s considerate Jim, but you don’t need to wrap me up in cotton wool, y’know. The doctors said….”
“Yeah, yeah, I know what they said..but let’s just take it a bit easy at first, eh?” Jim pressed Oswald’s hand to his lips. He kissed the sapphire stone on the ring emphatically.
“Anyway, I don’t know about you but I could eat something. I bet you are starving, huh? It’s past lunch time now. And you need to keep up your strength.” He winked.
“Well….yes, actually, I am a little peckish. Thank you Jim.” Oswald smirked gratefully and winked back. He was indeed feeling fatigued - and very hungry - now Jim came to mention it. He still hadn’t got around to finishing his breakfast….he had hoped that the loud sounds of their lovemaking would drown out the rumbling sounds in his stomach. They had….
He was loving the feel of Jim’s mouth kissing his hand. He had never known this degree of tenderness from, and physical intimacy with, anyone else and it made him so happy he could burst.
Jim had insisted on carrying Oswald to bed. “D’you think you’re travelling to bed on foot, Cobblepot?” Jim had growled playfully. “Think again!” Then naked Jim had lifted up his little half-naked Cobblepot and carried him over to the bed. This sparked off memories of their first time together...although on that occasion, they had both been much more shy….and much more clothed, of course….
“I need to practice anyway, for the big night...eh?” Jim had said meaningfully, with a wink. Oswald had looked appropriately coy as he had been transported away, his arms slung tightly round his police detective’s neck….
He had to do his best for Jim. He just had to! Nothing was too much trouble for him. He loved him so much….
First thing tomorrow he would start putting his plans together. He would work out what to say and do, with whom, when and where. After all, timing was everything… but, most importantly of all, love would conquer all.
He suddenly had a pang within as he remembered how Taran had been so helpful to him with all of his plans, keeping them together...and keeping him together, too. She had supported him and kept his secrets - non-judgmentally - she had loved him….given him her undying loyalty to the point of pain, of torture. He loved Jim very much, but he had loved Taran too; not in the way he loved Jim, and not in the way she had wanted him to love her, but it was still a kind of love. He felt it still. His heart began to ache. He wondered how she was, and where she was..and whether he would ever see her again...
Then he heard Jim pottering about in the kitchen making lunch, pans and plates and cutlery clattering about and making sweet, discordant music together. He smelt fresh coffee brewing, heard Jim whistling to himself, sometimes in tune and sometimes not; but clearly happy and light-hearted. He felt his spirits soar again. Yes, Jim..his one and only Jim!
He knew that he must soon go to see Captain Barnes….once his plans were finalised. But Jim must know nothing about any of this….no, nothing at all….
Chapter 10: Oswald Bargains with Barnes
Oswald goes to see Captain Barnes about Jim's re-instatement to the GCPD
I am not the world's best at writing clever plots, so I hope this scene works and does justice to our lovely little mischief-maker.
Oswald Bargains with Barnes.
Oswald smiled deferentially.
“I have great ambitions for Jim - and I’m sure you do, too, Captain Barnes.” He leaned forward and rested against his cane as he spoke.
He had managed to get an appointment with Barnes, and was now standing facing the GCPD Captain in his office. He hadn’t been invited to sit down, and he didn’t want to….even though his leg was starting to give him some grief. He cursed the cold weather - it always irritated the damn thing to death! But he had the height advantage, looking down and addressing Barnes’s stony face, and so wasn’t minded to complain.
The police officers who were in the precinct outside Barnes’ office were trying their utmost to pretend that they weren’t sneaking a look at the scene that was unfolding inside it. They were failing dismally.
Harvey was nowhere to be seen - otherwise Oswald was sure he would have interfered in some way. He wondered where he was and what he was up to.
“Yes - but I’m sure your hopes and dreams for him are far different from mine….”
“Oh, I wouldn't be so sure - after all, we both want order restored to Gotham, don’t we? I can help you with that.”
Barnes grunted, but said nothing. He had to admit that Cobblepot was right, in a bizarre kind of way. He hated that thought, but nevertheless….
Cobblepot held a lot of sway in this city, and he would have to be careful how he dealt with him - especially now Jim was involved with him.
Maybe if Jim were to come back, he could use him as a conduit, maybe persuade him to turn State’s evidence - appeal to his sense of civic duty, while he still had one?
He was inwardly seething and wishing that he had Cobblepot alone in the interrogation room. He would show him what his hopes and dreams really were! But then again - how would Jim react to that? Not well, he guessed.
He hated the thought of those two being together, and was still reeling from the shock - and the last thing he wanted was one of his best officers being involved with a criminal - but deep down, he had to begrudgingly admire the way Jim had stuck up for Cobblepot. He was fiercely loyal to him, that was clear. He had chosen his side and was sticking to it, for better or for worse. On reflection, Jim had been very brave to stand up to his CO, and to be honest and stand up for Cobblepot the way he had - knowing what his response would be.
“I love Oswald,” he’d said, grit and determination all over his face and in his voice. “I don’t care what you think and I don’t care if that doesn’t suit the GCPD either. We are going to get married, with or without your approval, and so I’m resigning.”
Barnes was privately so jealous that he had never been subject to that depth of feeling, that level of love and devotion from anyone. And Cobblepot did seem to be genuine in his affection for Jim too. He couldn’t understand it. It just didn’t make any sense to him - not even in Gotham.
Oswald inwardly smiled with triumph when he saw from Barnes’ eyes that he had struck a chord. He now just had to hope that this would work.
He knew that deep down Barnes would love the opportunity to mete out some form of punishment to his person. It was only his association with Jim that was stopping Barnes from doing so, he was sure of it. He would have to make the most of that.
“Does Jim know you’ve come here to see me?”
“No! No, of course he doesn’t!” Oswald spoke indignantly and looked wounded. “He would never agree to me coming here and speaking for him like this. He’s….well, far too proud and independent.” He paused wistfully for a moment and let that thought sink in. Those were just two of the many things he loved about Jim. And then there were those bewitching looks of bewilderment...his soulful deep blue eyes…..
“But,” he continued, pursing up his lips thoughtfully, “Well….I felt I had to, you see. Captain Barnes - as you probably know, Jim only resigned out of loyalty for me. It was a beautiful gesture on his part, but ill-advised. I think we can both agree on that - yes?” He leaned forward emphatically and raised an eyebrow at Barnes.
“He tells me you two are tying the knot,” cut in Barnes flatly, avoiding the chance to actually hear himself agree with Oswald’s last statement, which he felt would probably stick in his throat.
“We are affianced, yes,” confirmed Oswald proudly, bowing solemnly, and glancing down at and flexing his wedding band finger, flashing off the sapphire engagement ring that Jim had put there. “I don’t expect that meets with your blessing,” he added provocatively.
Barnes caught sight of the flashing sapphire and flinched for a moment. “Well, what you two have decided to do with one another is none of my concern,” he replied archly.
(“Ouch!” Oswald thought. “That was brutal. It’s a good job I don’t care one iota about his opinion on the subject.”)
“Fair enough,” he said aloud, shrugging casually. “But….back to the matter in hand. What I propose is this. You go, in person, and beg - yes, beg - Jim to return to the GCPD, and I guarantee to help the GCPD to cut crime by two thirds within the same number of months.”
“Oh? And how do you propose to do that?” replied Barnes acidly.
“Ah well, that’s just it.” Oswald sighed, with mock deep regret. “I can’t tell you. It’s very hush-hush.” He lowered his voice and tapped the side of his nose to illustrate his point.
“No can do,” Barns growled. “You can go to hell.”
“Yes, Captain Barnes - I know I can. There’s no need for you to tell me where to go - or give me any directions on how to get there.” He paused for effect, tilting his head and smiling meaningfully. He wondered if Barnes would get the hidden message in his choice of words - and his mode of delivery - but he didn’t seem to register it.
“But anyway - meanwhile, I believe I - that is, we - really can do some good for this city. I love Gotham, it’s my home, and I really want to make it safe again. If only I could make you understand that too!” Oswald’s look and tone became gentler and more placating. He tried to appeal to Barnes’s softer, more sentimental side - that’s if, of course, he actually had one.
Barnes just stared back at him, his expression deadpan. That softly softly act might work on Jim, he thought, but it sure as hell didn’t cut any ice with him. He really wanted to take Cobblepot by the collar, escort him from the premises, boot him up the ass and tell him never to come back again - but then he thought of Jim. He knew he needed him back - and it appeared that the only way to persuade him to come back was to go along with Cobblepot’s suggestion - at least for now. The mere thought of it almost killed him, but he might not have any real choice. Cobblepot had some hold, some kind of power over Jim that he was sure he couldn’t yet break.
He hated to admit it to himself - but he actually kinda envied the son of a bitch for that!
“Well, say if I don’t agree to your…. proposal,” Barnes said through clenched teeth.
“Then I think we might have a problem, Captain Barnes. I would hate to see the crime rate go up in this city….wouldn’t you?”
Chapter 11: Jim Wears a Mask for Oswald
Jim tries a little something to add spice to their shenanigans.
Jim Wears a Mask for Oswald.
“Oswald, I’ve got a surprise for you.”
He had his back turned to Oswald, who had just entered the bedroom.
“What is it, Jim?” Oswald sounded intrigued.
Jim turned around and there was the owl mask - on his face.
“Jim - you kept it? The owl mask!?”
“Yes Ozzy. I think we can have some fun with this.”
“Why did you keep it, Jim?”
Jim smiled slowly. He thought this would add some spice to their lovemaking, and he had to get the roleplaying right.
“Well, when I put it on, I get a feeling of power. I feel kinda - well, masterful!”
“Masterful eh? Mmmm, I like the sound of that!! “
“So you wanna play? You wanna play - master and servant?”
“Oh yes, I do. Command me, Grand Court Master! I am your slave! “ Oswald’s eyes flashed with excitement.
“Very well, slave. Come here, my subject.”
Jim beckoned dramatically with his finger.
Oswald hobbled up closer, his eyes wide with desire.
Jim reached out and grasped hold of Oswald’s trouser belt. He pulled him forward.
He wanted to play. He really did. But he suddenly remembered….
He let go of Oswald. He stopped smiling.
“Jim?” Oswald’s fiercely bright eyes dimmed a little. “What’s the matter?”
“Oswald - do you remember when you waited for me outside my flat the day you came back - after Ed... tried ...to kill you? When I thought he had killed you?
“Yes, of course I remember. You saw me and you said, “Oswald!” And you looked..well, a little taken aback.”
“Yes. I thought you were dead, and there you were, large as life again.”
“Well at least you didn't seem disappointed.”
“I wasn't. I was so happy to see you, but I played it down, I said…”
“You said something like, ‘I don't know why I’m surprised!” Oswald interjected, mimicking Jim’s gravelly sound.
“And you gave me that catlike grin, and said..”
“Well, you know me - I am notoriously difficult to kill!” Oswald cut in, mimicking own his facial expression and tone.
“Yeah, that's it! That's it exactly!” Jim grinned for a second, then became solemn again. He came closer to Oswald. He took him gently by the arms.
“Do you remember what you came to see me about?”
“Yes, Jim. I wanted to know who was ruling Gotham. And you didn't want to tell me. You didn’t want me to find out. You told me....let’s see, you said, “Oswald, if you know what’s good for you, drop it,” or something like that,” Oswald said, again trying his best to mimic Jim’s voice.
“Yes, I did. Just like that, Oswald!” Jim couldn’t help grinning at Oswald’s amusing impression of him.
“At the time I was exasperated with you, but then I thought, maybe he does really care about what happens to me after all.”
“Exactly. I did. And I do.”
“I think that’s the closest you came to saying I love you back then, James Gordon.”
“Yes, I believe it was. That's why I just stopped doing what I was just doing. I realised what that moment meant. I only just thought about it! Because the owl mask reminded me - it was about the Court of Owls, they were ruling Gotham and you wanted to know about them, and I knew they could hurt you - or worse. Just after you’d come back from the dead, you were going to risk your life again. And I didn’t want you to. I really didn't!”
“But then I ended up saving your life, James Gordon.”
“Yep. You did. And not for the first - OR the last time, Oswald Cobblepot.”
He reached out and tenderly touched the place on Oswald’s chest where the bullet had entered and where now there was a ragged scar reminding Jim of how close he had come to losing his love.
“I’m glad I finally appreciate that. And appreciate you,” he said quietly. A lump came to his throat.
“I appreciate you too. Always appreciated you.” Oswald gave Jim a soft smile.
Jim took off the mask. He felt that the mask and its associations might be just too near the bone for using for horseplay.
“No, Jim - put it back on,” Oswald demanded. “I like it!”
“But the Court of Owls….they all perished…”
“Which well, sort of, makes you the last surviving member, James Gordon. Don't you know what a turn on that is for me?!”
Chapter 12: "Don't Ask About My Business" - Silence is Golden
Oswald comes home late and Jim frets, but asks no questions.
This chapter belongs with this story, but is here in a random order as I just had a vision about it and wanted to share. This might be re-ordered at a later date.
“Don’t Ask About My Business” (Silence is Golden).
Oswald gets home late and Jim Frets….
Oswald gets home late. He limps quietly into the bedroom, trying not to disturb Jim.
He takes off his coat and jacket and hangs them in the wardrobe.
He sits in the bedroom chair and carefully takes off his shoes. He sighs, yawns and stretches, and passes his hand through his hair. He gives his aching leg a quick rub.
Then he strips off the rest of his clothes and gets into his pyjamas.
He hobbles over to the bed and slides in between the sheets slowly and carefully.
The clock on the bedside table says 3 am.
As he settles down Jim stirs. He is lying facing away from Oswald.
He turns over and blinks awake, rubbing his eyes sleepily. He yawns.
“Hey. Did you only just come to bed? I waited up for you as long as I could….”
“Guilty as charged, Detective Gordon.”
Oswald’s manner is weary despite the light-hearted jibe he often greets his lover with. He sounds and looks exhausted.
“Are you ok?” Jim asks, frowning. He strokes Oswald’s hair back and kisses him softly. He sees Oswald’s eyes are troubled as well as heavy. He knows better than to say “Where have you been?” or “What have you been up to?”
“Yes, I’m fine Jim. Let’s just go to sleep.” Oswald gives him an edgy little smile.
Then he burrows down against Jim’s chest, closes his eyes and sighs deeply. He clings to Jim tightly.
“OK, OK,” Jim rasps, getting the message, and wraps his arms around Oswald protectively. He rubs his back and kisses his soft raven crown. “I’m glad you’re home, Oswald,” he murmurs into his parting. He inhales hard, enjoying Oswald’s warm, sensual signature scent. Oswald grunts drowsily and sighs again, relaxing his grip a little.
Jim continues to stroke his sleepy little lover rhythmically. He feels his man's warm, silk clad body breathing deeply against his as he falls asleep.
He wonders what has happened. He wants to ask but also wants to let Oswald rest. He wonders if Oswald will reveal anything to him in the morning when they wake in each other's arms - but he won’t push it. He knows better than that now. He thinks that maybe Oswald doesn’t want to share the gory details, not let Jim be touched or tainted by them - although Jim wants to comfort him in his pain.
He is glad and grateful to have him back safe and sound, and this is always his main concern. He will keep a vigil, holding his lover’s breathing body close and watching him sleep, until he eventually loses consciousness himself.
Chapter 13: Siren's Wail - Oswald and Jim Give Babs the Kiss-Off
Oswald and Jim kiss 'in public' for the first time - in a deserted bar
Siren’s Wail - Oswald and Jim Give Babs the Kiss-Off.
Now was the time to put Oswald’s carefully-orchestrated scheme into action.
“Timing is everything,” Oswald had said. “And of course - stage management!”
Jim knew his cunning little gangster was very adept at both of these things.
His panache and flair for drama never ceased to captivate his beloved police detective.
“Oswald, how the hell do you think up all these tactics?” he’d quizzed with a baffled frown, scratching his head with puzzlement. This was after his cute little trickster had run through his plans with him in fine detail, chuckling excitedly and gesticulating wildly as he went.
“Well, that would be telling, Mr Police Detective!” his demonic little dandy had teased, winking his dazzling blue eye and grinning impishly.
His sexy super villain knew how to tantalise him….He had used to hate being kept guessing like this, but now he loved him, he really enjoyed being toyed with in such a way. How times changed….and all for the better.
As per his own instructions, Oswald turned up to The Sirens the next afternoon - ostensibly to take advantage of the club’s new cocktail ‘Happy Hour’. The Club had not been doing so well, especially now Tabitha was not around any more to act as a partner and foil for Barbara - and Butch had disappeared without trace not long after his crush had ‘exited the scene’. So now Ms Keane, being somewhat at a loose end, was having to come up with all sorts of special incentives to attract people through the door.
The charismatic kingpin and his handsome future husband had quite a lot to celebrate, not excluding Jim’s imminent reinstatement into the GCPD - after a decent period of absence with full pay, of course - apparently, at Barnes’ insistence.
Oswald wanted Jim back at the GCPD, but also desired some quality time alone with him before he returned to work. He loved the novelty of coming back home to a hot meal prepared by his even hotter fiance every night, and although Jim hadn’t been the best cook in the world to start with he had improved with the help of several recipe books borrowed from Gotham library.
And what he might lack in culinary skills he more than made up for by looking terribly sexy in that striped chef’s apron….more than one meal had been postponed by Oswald’s libido being driven wild by the sight of his delectable detective bending and sweating over a hot stove as Oswald had got back from a particularly taxing meeting.
They had found some pretty creative methods for relieving Oswald’s tension….and then ended up ordering in pizza or Chinese for afterwards, their dinner having, of course, gone stone cold or gotten ruined….not that they cared too much. They would just sit in bed and eat their takeaway, Oswald giggling and feeding pizza to Jim, and vice versa with Jim chuckling huskily, maybe shovelling noodles into Oswald’s mouth with a pair of chopsticks.
Yes, Oswald had to admit that he was very much enjoying having Jim at home in their swish new apartment - unpacking their belongings after their move and getting everything set up ready for their married life together. Jim was surprisingly good at setting up home - at least, when it came to ordering about the removals team. He was so masterful, standing there with his hands on his hips and his brow furrowed with determination, as he read the removals staff the riot act when they didn’t play ball. That wasn’t half a turn on for his little Ozzy!
Jim was also very useful at positioning and repositioning the heavier objects until they were ‘just so’ - exactly as Oswald directed, of course, as Jim had absolutely no idea about interior decoration or the arrangement of soft furnishings, whereas Oswald had the most refined taste and judgement.
Jim’s forbearance with Oswald’s pernickety demands seemed to know no limits.
“Your brains and my brawn work so well together!” he had chuckled, and Oswald, being too polite to agree outright, had said, “We are both very good at what we do, Mr Police Detective. I really couldn’t manage without you!” and had touched his bad leg pointedly. This would make Jim extra affectionate towards him, which was, of course, always welcome.
Oswald wouldn’t be giving up the mansion (of course!) but this spacious apartment was more convenient for both of them in terms of work in the city. They could still spend weekends in the country, and to entertain, just like any smart, well-to-do married couple would. He just couldn’t wait for that!
And now, he was ready for more than a little fun at Barbara’s expense. Oswald loved to cause Ms Kean discomfort….it was one of his favourite pastimes...he so loved to play!
She already looked uncomfortable, but she didn’t know the half of it yet! He stifled a giggle as he imagined what her reaction to his little ‘set piece’ might be.
“O-zzy!” Barbara greeted him with the usual false hug and cheek kissing, attempting to conceal her real feelings on encountering him (which he could always read as clear as day in her eyes), and flashed her canines in a wide, dazzling smile. She took a sip from the cocktail glass she had balanced between her elegant fingers with their garishly-painted talons. As usual, she was dressed up to the nines - on this occasion, she had on a glittering green cocktail dress that hugged her slender figure like a second skin, and that showed plenty of her ivory-toned flesh - revealing all whilst saying nothing.
It was her own personal form of battle dress, designed to weaken the defences of any poor gentleman (or, in some cases, lady) who happened to try tussling with her, mentally or physically. She was a veritable sex siren and used her weapons to the max.
All this was completely wasted on Oswald, of course….and she had been all too aware of that for some time….although it didn’t stop her touching him in a most over-familiar way, which he chose to tolerate because they had a kind of history. And maybe, just maybe, deep down, as she had once belonged to Jim, he felt he might actually be hurting his lover by harming her by proxy - in a bizarre kind of way.
But he had come clad for conflict too. He had made sure to clothe himself in his rich purple silk waistcoat under his elegant dark blue tails, and to adorn his wing-collared throat with his best blue brocade tie. This elegant ensemble, with its luxurious material and regal colours, was Jim’s self-confessed favourite - and Jim had helped him make sure the knot in his tie was straight and the rest of his regalia was also looking perfect just before Oswald had left for the battlefield.
“You’re right about this - it really does bring out the colour of your eyes!” Jim had grinned, patting the knot of the tie affectionately.
“And it goes with this perfectly too - as I also said!” Oswald had smirked triumphantly, lifting his left hand and carefully placing it against his collarbone, next to the tie, to show off the sparkling sapphire on his ring and the matching blue tones to full advantage. He had even put on sapphire coloured cufflinks on his starched white cuffs. No detail had been missed.
“Yep. It all looks great,” Jim had remarked gruffly, as he had moved back a couple of paces to admire the spectacle. There he stood….his pretty penguin-peacock….his little raven-haired beauty...all dressed up to kill.
Jim had a huge lump in his throat.
Oswald hadn’t needed to ask “How do I look?” The expression on Jim’s face had said it all.
The way Jim was staring at him with those soulful deep blue eyes was precious….just like the ring Jim had slid onto his finger as a sign of love and commitment….and as an overture to their hopefully impending marriage.
Oswald had very definite ideas about the kind of wedding they would have, and he had already started planning it in his mind. He hadn’t run his ideas past Jim yet, but he was sure his police detective would go along with it. Jim knew how important this ceremony was to him, and how clever he was at organising and choreographing. His talents would not be wasted.
He was wondering if Barbara had been tipped off about their engagement already - although he doubted that the only two people who were aware of his betrothal to Jim - i.e., Messrs Barnes and Bullock - would be likely to want to mention this news to anyone.
“Barbara. And how are we today?” He returned her superficial greeting and air kisses and gave her his best feline grin.
“All the better for seeing you, Ozzy darling!” She pawed at his arm in her usual gushing way. He inwardly grimaced but looked back at her levelly and stretched his smile even further.
“Anyway - what brings you here?” she enquired casually, leaning against the bar and taking another sip of her cocktail.
“Me? Oh, I’m meeting someone here for drinks - in fact, they really should be here by now!” He glanced at his watch with an expression of mild irritation and tutted impatiently.
“Never mind, maybe I could just peruse that ‘two for one’ cocktail menu that you have advertised outside while I wait….” he continued pleasantly.
“You’re meeting someone?” she echoed, her beady eyes wide with curiosity. “And who would that be?”
“Oh, just a friend,” he said casually.
“Just a friend? Oh, Ozzy! There’s no need to be coy!” she coaxed, poking him on the arm playfully, her smile stretching out into full vampiric mode. “Go on, tell me. Who is it? Did you get lucky? Eh?!” She poked him sharply again.
“Barbara, really!” he protested with mock indignation, rubbing his arm as he spoke. “I refuse to dignify that with a response!”
“Ohhhh - Ozzy! You DID get lucky!”
“My lips are sealed. I’m saying nothing else.” He looked nonchalant.
Barbara bit her finger thoughtfully. It was clear that the suspense was killing her. “Good,” he thought.
“Please, Ozzy. Tell me who it is. I mean, it can’t be Ed, surely - he tried to kill you, ha ha!”” she persisted, with a little hysteria coming through in her voice. He could see she was dying to drag it out of him, but he loved to keep her dangling.
“No, it’s not Ed - of course!” he said stiffly.
“Well, anyway - you will see who it is, soon,” he continued drily. “I suggested this place because we needed peace and quiet, and so I thought your club would be perfect!” He took a slow, meaningful glance around the deserted bar.
“Well, it’s early yet - it will soon get busy, Ozzy,” she replied coolly, but with a defensive edge to her tone.
“Of course. No offence intended,” he replied, bowing his head with forced politeness.
“None taken!” she said with fake gratitude. “Anyway - if you want a cocktail while you are waiting for your...erm, ‘friend’, WINK, whoever they are, then I will get you the list….”
She clicked her manicured fingers impatiently at the bar steward, who was hovering nervously nearby. “Cocktail menu - now!” she snapped. The bar steward scurried over and handed her the menu. She snatched it away, then presented it to Oswald with a dramatic flourish. “Here you are!” she beamed broadly.
“Thank you,” he said grandly, then took it from her ceremoniously. He opened it up, placed it on the bar and pretended to be reading through it.
Then he casually put his left hand up to his cheek, as if musing on his choice.
From the corner of his eye he saw that her gaze was fixated on the movement of his finger as he began to tap thoughtfully on the side of his face. She couldn’t miss the sparkling blue gem flashing on his wedding band finger….
He stopped reading and looked round at her curiously. “Is anything the matter?” he said nonchalantly.
“No, not at all” Barbara lied.
At that moment, Jim burst in through the door.
Barbara nearly jumped out of her skin, and narrowly avoided spilling her drink.
Jim paused momentarily in the doorway and shrugged apologetically. “Sorry, Oz,” he panted. “The traffic was a bitch!”
He dashed over to Oswald, breathing hard. He passed by Barbara, ignoring her completely, just focussing on his man’s frowning face.
He was unshaven and was wearing jeans, a t-shirt and a distressed leather jacket - his laid-back, off-duty look. Or, as Oswald preferred to call it, his ‘sexy bounty hunter persona.’
“Jim..Jim..what am I going to do with you?”….” Oswald began, but Jim leaned in, took Oswald by the chin and kissed him fleetingly on the mouth.
They both heard Barbara’s shocked gasp, but didn’t take their eyes from one another.
“There. Do you forgive me?” Jim asked quietly.
“Hmmm, well, maybe….but I’m not quite sure, James….”
“I see - well then, let me try again.”
And then Jim took his lover’s face in his hands and pressed his mouth firmly against Oswald’s.
Jim closed his eyes tightly, feeling Oswald’s intense excitement and desire in his quick, panting breaths. Oswald put his hands to Jim’s head and leaned in eagerly to the kiss. Jim pushed hard, manipulating Oswald’s lips apart. Jim guided and stretched Oswald’s lips wider, and then smooched him long and slow, gently caressing the firm line of his jaw with his finger as they kissed.
They stayed together for as long as they could. When they had to finish, their lips pulled away with a soft smacking sound.
“There, am I forgiven now….Mr Cobblepot?” Jim enquired. He continued to stroke Oswald’s cheek and stare into his eyes, both men completely forgetting about and ignoring the presence of their shocked bystander. Oswald’s slightly-parted lips and misted, half-closed eyes spoke volumes.
“Oh, Jim, yes….of course you are! “ he breathed. He had been going to follow this up with, “But you really must be more punctual once we are married, Detective Gordon,” but he was still reeling from the impact of the kiss.
It had almost taken his breath away, and with it, most of his prepared script. It had felt like they had kissed for the very first time all over again….but this time, it was tender, romantic and sublime.
Their very first clandestine kiss in that alleyway had been spontaneous and sexy, Jim taking Oswald completely by surprise, but this time it had felt so much sweeter - a proper lover’s kiss. They had both completely forgotten about their audience….and their original purpose for being where they were. They were somewhere only they knew, in their own little bubble of being.
Jim smiled. He smoothed back Oswald’s raven fringe and kissed his forehead gently. “Good,” he whispered.
Barbara just stood there slack-jawed and speechless. She couldn’t believe what she was seeing….what she had just witnessed. She went to take a drink to steady her nerves, missed her mouth and spilled her Martini all over her cleavage and down her expensive new dress.
“Oh, crap!” she barked, coughing and spluttering and frantically wiping down her dress. “Napkin - now!” she barked over at the bar steward, who jumped to it like a frightened sparrow. Any dignity she might have possessed had deserted her completely.
“Best encounter ever - in more ways than one!” thought Oswald, as he came to, remembering where he was and why he and Jim were there. He glanced round at his shocked, soaking wet host and smirked at her with intense satisfaction.
“Oh, Barbara,” he said casually, “I believe you’ve met my fiance….?”
Chapter 14: After the Kiss Off
Just a short follow-up chapter to 'Siren's Wail'
After the Kiss-Off.
Oswald’s plan had come off, had come together successfully, although not in the way he had expected.
They hadn’t stuck to the script word-for-word. The scheme he had composed had been faultless to a tee, and although he and Jim had got lost so much in their own little world, the desired effect had been the same. And the effect of their desire had been to aim true and hit the bullseye.
At first, Oswald had wondered, if only briefly, if it would be a tad too cruel to kiss Barbara’s-ex-fiancee-now-his-betrothed in front of her. It would really be rubbing that perfect little nose of hers in it.
But then, he had recalled just how vicious had been her treatment of him, along with Tabitha and Nygma. Tabitha had almost throttled the life out of him with that evil whip, and she had taunted him mercilessly over his mother’s murder, rubbing so much salt into his wound. And Barbara had just stood there and laughed about it!
Oswald had pretended to be forgiving towards Barbara for her part in it - to make her think he had let bygones be bygones - and now, this was the best way he could think of to hurt her mentally. He had more than an inkling that she still harbored affections for Jim, no matter how much she tried to protest to the contrary. He could read the love in her eyes for Jim, just as he could see in her eyes that she held him in contempt.
No, her facade didn’t impress him or fool him one iota - not any more….
And he was glad to make her hate him even more for taking Jim away.
“Come, James,” he had said, after they had kissed and he had delivered the coup de grace so gracefully. “Let’s go somewhere a little more….upbeat. It feels like a morgue in here!”
Chapter 15: Oswald's Night Terrors
Oswald wakes up weeping in Jim's arms after a nightmare and Jim comforts him.
Oswald’s Night Terrors
Jim was suddenly shaken awake by Oswald’s trembling, weeping presence in his arms.
“Hey, Ozzy,” he soothed, “Shush now, don’t cry.” He cradled Oswald tenderly and kissed his crown. “What is it? Did you have a bad dream?” He gave him a little squeeze.
“Oh, Jim - I’m sorry to wake you up....” Oswald sniffed, the tears still running down his reddened cheeks.
“Shhh, don’t….” Jim stroked Oswald’s raven hair rhythmically, comforting and calming him. “Tell me about it,” he rasped. “Tell me what made you cry.”
“It was...it was...my mother, Jim. I keep seeing her....her face, when she was dying….” And Oswald’s tears fell afresh, and faster. “There was nothing….I could….do! It was all my fault...”
“Oh, Oz….it wasn’t your fault. We know it was the Galavans.” Jim wiped Oswald’s tears away and ran his fingers slowly through his soft dark locks.
“But...if I hadn’t trusted Butch...if I’d worked out that it was a trap….” Oswald’s eyes filled up again. They looked like shimmering blue glass...although he hated to see Oswald in such a traumatised state, Jim had to admit that his eyes looked stunning in their sorrow.
“You weren’t to know, sweetheart,” Jim rasped. “You shouldn’t blame yourself. Your mother...she wouldn’t want you to.” He put his face close to Oswald’s, then made tentative contact, their cheeks softly grazing. He nuzzled him and gently kissed his ear, before pouring soothing sounds into it.
“She loved you, and so do I. Don’t hold yourself responsible….please....”
Jim felt Oswald sigh and his sobs begin to subside. “Thank you,” he whispered hoarsely into Jim’s neck. “That means the world to me, Jim.”
“Do you feel better then?”
Oswald pulled away and looked at Jim sheepishly with his swollen eyes and runny nose. He wiped his face with the back of his hand and sniffed deeply. “I feel foolish, Jim. I keep crying like this in front of you - what must you think of me? I mean - I’m a grown man, for God’s sake….”
“Stop that right now, Oswald Cobblepot. You have every right to be upset, and you have nothing to be embarrassed about. But I’m here now - just remember that. You can cry on me anytime you want. And - let’s get you a handkerchief, and clean you up, eh?” He smiled good-naturedly and winked.
“Just a second - I have one under my pillow….” Oswald smiled back and fished out the blue silk square. He always remembered to put a handkerchief under his pillow at night, for he was used to waking up in such a mess on a regular basis.
Having said that, he hadn’t had this nightmare for ages - not since he and Jim had got together - but now it seemed to be invading his sleep again, and also, effectively, disturbing his lover’s rest too.
But he should have known that Jim would understand and support him. He was so happy to be in Jim’s loving embrace….and not to wake up alone.
“And Oswald,” Jim added, as they were about to settle down to sleep again, “Remember - I get anxious sometimes too, and you’re always there for me. It’s what friends - and lovers - are for, right?”
Chapter 16: Jim's Killer Nightmare
Jim takes his turn at having night terrors
Jim’s Killer Nightmare.
It was Jim’s turn to wake up shivering, gasping, and sweating. Oswald woke up with a start.
“Jim..Jim...dear...are you alright?”
Jim panted hard, looking back at Oswald with large, haunted eyes.
“Jim - what’s the matter?” Oswald stroked Jim’s arm lightly with the back of his hand.
Jim didn’t answer, but continued staring at him with a confused, distressed expression.
Oswald stroked back his lover’s hair. “Jim?” he repeated anxiously. “Say something, please.”
The look in Jim’s eyes was frightening him.
Jim blinked and seemed just to be waking up. “Oh - Oz - I’m sorry,” he rasped. His face crumpled and he collapsed against Oswald’s body like a limp rag.
“Jim!” cried Oswald anxiously, thinking that Jim had passed out. He rubbed Jim’s back vigorously.
But then he felt Jim’s body move and his head raise up again.
Jim looked up and Oswald sighed with intense relief. “Oh, Jim - thank God! You scared me to death, dear!”
“Sorry,” Jim repeated, staring back at Oswald ruefully.
“Hey, Jim…Jim, don’t apologise..please…” Oswald stroked back Jim’s hair again. His lover’s face was sweating profusely. He must have had a very traumatic dream to cause these symptoms.
“Jim dear,” he coaxed. “Are you alright?”
“Yeah, yeah, I’m ok.” Jim smiled sheepishly. “I think I woke up in the middle of my dream. It was almost like I was still there. I...I’m sorry I scared you, Oz.””
“James. No need for apologies. I was just worried about you, my dear. I thought you had fainted.””
“Oh, no I didn’t. Just felt a bit weird. I had a bad dream, and didn’t realise I’d woken up. I think I just had a bit of a shock.”
“You’ve had night terrors as well? Awwwww, Jim!” Oswald caressed Jim’s cheek. “Well, well, this is turning out to be one of those nights, isn’t it, eh?” He tilted his head and smiled.
Jim smiled back. “Yeah, I guess it is.”
“ So, then, tell me, James - what was your nightmare all about?”
“Oh - really, sweetheart, you don’t want to know….”
“Yes I do, James Gordon, or I wouldn’t ask, now would I? Come on, Jim,” he coaxed, “Tell your Ozzy all about it. Oh and by the way, thank you for calling me ‘sweetheart’. I really like that!” He gave Jim an extra wide dimpled grin.
“Yeah,” grinned Jim, “Well, you are a sweetheart!” Then he became solemn again.
“Erm - the thing is...sweetheart…. I’m afraid my dream, might...well, upset you.…”
“Upset me , you say? I very much doubt that. And anyway, what if it does - it clearly disturbed you - Jim dear. Let’s share and share alike, shall we?” Oswald winked.
“Well, OK then - thanks,” Jim smiled gratefully. “But...well, this will be hard for me to describe to you.”
Oswald stroked Jim’s arm. “Take your time, James. I’m right here, and I’m not going anywhere.”
“I know, Oz. Thanks.” Jim glanced away for a moment and swallowed hard before speaking.
“Oswald….do you remember that night when….erm, when Fish died? I mean - the last time she was killed, for real?”
Oswald grimaced. He hoped Jim hadn’t noticed.
“Oh.....yes, of course I do, Jim…..”
“Yep, of course you do. And you know who killed her…”
“Yes, Jim, I know, but….”
“I did. I killed her. And that’s what I was just dreaming about...reliving it….here in this bed, sleeping right next to you!”
“I killed her, Oswald - and then, I almost killed you, too!”
“Jim, Jim….please….it wasn’t you….it was the virus! We both know that now.”
“Maybe so, Oswald. We both know it now. But I still did it! I still killed Fish, and I attacked you too.”
Oswald continued to stroke Jim soothingly. He felt the sinews in Jim’s arms flex with all the tension. The movement of Jim’s muscles felt beautiful beneath his fingers, but he wished to comfort Jim, calm him down, and take away his torment.
“I think...I think it was because of what you said about your mother when you woke up earlier, Oz. It must have triggered the memory.”
“Triggered the memory? How, dear, and why?” Oswald coaxed.
“Well, Fish was kind of like a second mother to you, wasn’t she, even though she hurt you and even though you two were always at odds. And then there you both were, just about to reconcile, and then I went and killed her! So in a way, you see…. I killed your mother. I’ve always felt bad about it, deep down, y’know, but pushed it to the back of my mind. Until now….”
“Oh, Jim - Jim dear, you shouldn’t take on so! I guess she was like a mother to me - in a way - although of course, she had a very different approach to parenting than my ACTUAL mother!” Oswald laughed harshly.
“But….seriously….Jim…. listen,” he resumed. “It was an accident, and anyway, you weren’t in your right mind when it happened. I realised that a long time ago and I don’t hold you accountable. I mean, I know I was upset with you at the time….”
“Oh, Jim - Jim dear, you shouldn’t take on so! I guess she was like a mother to me - in a way - although of course, she had a very different approach to parenting than my ACTUAL mother!” Oswald laughed harshly.
“But….seriously….Jim…. listen,” he resumed. “It was an accident, and anyway, you weren’t in your right mind when it happened. I realised that a long time ago and I don’t hold you accountable. I mean, I know I was upset with you at the time….”
“You were beside yourself with grief and anger, Oswald. You said, “People call ME a monster! You, Jim Gordon - you’re the monster!” You were up for killing me!”
“True, I know….”
“And then I grabbed you by your throat, and lifted you up by it...and said, ”Yes, I AM a monster!” “ completed Jim, with a shudder. “Oh Oz. That was a terrible moment! I hate that I did it to you, especially after I’d just caused the death of someone who had become so dear to you.”
“Yes, well, I can’t deny it Jim, at the time, I thought, well, that I was quite possibly going to die. But Jim, you were in a very bad place! And you caught me on a very bad day, too. Plus, as we have already said, you were in the throes of the virus. You weren’t yourself.”
“I could have killed you, sweetheart. I can’t get that out of my mind. It doesn’t bear thinking about!”
“But you didn’t!”
“Thanks to Harv, yeah. If he hadn’t intervened….”
“But he did. And now here we are. And there’s nothing to forgive, Jim dear. Really!”
Jim stared incredulously at Oswald’s earnest face.
“Now I really am sure that I don’t deserve you, Oz.”
“Yes, you do, James Gordon.” Oswald blinked away tears and his bottom lip quivered.
“That’s very generous of you Oz. But d’you know what I’d like to do now?”
“No - what would that be, Jim?”
“I’d like to kiss you better- you know, where I hurt you before….”
And Oswald’s tears diminished and his dimples grew in a smile that said, “Yes please, Jim, I would love you to do that.”
And so Jim took Oswald’s face in his hands, first kissing him on his mouth and then slowly pressing his lips against his throat and neck.
Oswald closed his eyes and sighed, lifting up his chin and making softly appreciative sounds as each kiss was planted. He couldn’t get enough of the feel of Jim’s warm mouth making such tender contact with his skin. This was such a startling contrast to the way Jim had grabbed him so roughly by his neck and almost crushed the life out of him on that fateful night.
But that was not the real James Gordon. This man...the one who lay here with him, being so loving, humble and gentle....he was the genuine Jim. He knew that now and didn’t ever want to let him go.
He also didn’t want the kisses to stop, but like all good things, they had to come to an end.
“That was lovely, Mr Police Detective” he beamed, staring into Jim’s quiet deep blue eyes. He ran his fingers through Jim’s fair hair affectionately.
“Glad you liked it,” Jim rasped. “I just wanted to make up for how rough I was before…”
“Oh, believe me Jim - you have more than made up for it! And now, my dear James, come here.” He opened his arms and beckoned Jim inside.
Jim complied without hesitation, snuggling in eagerly against Oswald’s welcoming body.
“I love your cuddles, Cobblepot!” he rasped happily, as Oswald’s arms enfolded him.
“Well it’s good to know they’re not being wasted, Detective Gordon!”
“Yeah, that really would be a crime!”
Oswald chuckled. “Ha ha! Yes, it would!”
“Seriously, Oz - I can’t believe I resisted you for so long. Look what I was missing out on.”
“Well, Jim, better late than never - right?”
“Yeah - of course. You’re right - as always!”
“Thank you, Jim. And...Jim...just one more thing before we go back to sleep….”
“Yes, Ozzy - sweetheart?”
“Don’t apologise to me for anything like that ever again. What’s past is past. Think about the future.”
“Our wedding!” Oswald could hear Jim’s smile in his sleepy voice although his face was turned away, nestled comfortably against Oswald’s shoulder.
“Yes, our wedding, Jim. Think about that…” He stroked Jim’s hair distractedly.
“Do you have big plans, Ozzy?” Jim slurred, the soothing movement of Oswald’s hand clearly taking effect.
“Well of course - you know me, never do anything in half measures.” Oswald giggled mischievously and kissed Jim’s crown.
“I’m sure it will all be perfect. Just like you….Ozzy….baby….”
“Why, thank you, Jim. What a lovely thing to say….anyway, just to let you know that I’ve been looking at caterers and….”
Oswald stopped mid-sentence as Jim began to snore.
Chapter 17: Oswald Learns a Lot About Prejudice
Oswald finds out something unexpected about Gabe
I wanted to make up for what the scriptwriters did to Gabe in Gotham. I think Gabe did like Oswald and what they did to his relationship with Oswald sucked. So here is my version of events.
Oswald Learns a Lot About Prejudice.
“That’s a very fine piece o’ jewellery,” remarked the gangster.
He was eyeing up the ring on Oswald’s finger.
“Thank you,” replied Oswald proudly, flashing a quick glance at his treasure.
“I like sapphires. Gave my wife a ring very much like that....let’s see....for our first wedding anniversary. Women love jewellery, am I right, or am I right?” laughed the gangster.
“Yes, I suppose they do,” replied Oswald warily.
“But, erm, that thing on ya finger - it looks a bit like an engagement ring to me. Pretty expensive too, I’d say.”
“Erm, yes it is. An engagement ring, that is. And I don’t know how much it cost. I didn’t buy it.”
“Bit unusual - I mean, for a guy to be wearing an engagement ring, right? Never heard of that before.” The gangster looked at Oswald quizzically.
“Well - there’s a first time for everything - right?” Oswald smiled pleasantly and shrugged.
“Hrm, guess so. Anyway - who’s the lucky lady eh? She sure seems to have expensive taste.”
Oswald knew that this man was perfectly aware of what the answer was - he could see it on his face - and he was just waiting for the moment when Oswald would say the magic words.
He could lie. He knew he could. But why should he? Anyway, this man had already made up his mind what the answer was, and how he was planning to deal with it.
This guy was a big guy - very big - and could probably beat him within an inch of his life if he had a mind to. And this guy had ‘homophobic’ written all over him.
The ‘kill him but don’t kiss him’ approach. He knew it too well.
But how long should he keep this a secret when he and Jim were going to get married?
So he took the bit between his teeth and did something he never ever thought he would.
He told the truth when he knew it would hurt him. Possibly, a lot.
But he had Gabe and the guys to back him up - right?
He had to be honest with himself - he was never really quite sure how loyal any of them would be if they were faced with such a dilemma. He didn’t know what their views were on his relationship with Jim now they knew, and they never voiced their opinions because they were probably just too scared of him. Besides, Gabe wasn’t exactly the brightest tool in the box, he was just a big dumb ox of a guy. Just a heavy with all the brawn and none of the brains.
But he would take the chance if he had to.
“The person who bought this for me is no lady,” he said ambiguously, pointlessly trying to buy himself some time.
“No lady? You saying a tramp bought that for you? Pull the other one, fella!” Big Guy laughed loudly and his henchmen joined in as he looked round and prompted them. They were clearly too afraid not to.
“I’m not saying that a tramp bought it for me.”
“Then what are you sayin’?”
Oswald took a deep breath and looked Big Guy squarely in the face. He tightened his smile and stared straight into the mobster’s eyes.
“I think you know what I’m saying, sir.”
“Yeah. You’re saying you’re a fag. And I don’t do business with no fags. No - sir.”
Out of the corner of his eye Oswald saw Gabe shift his position slightly. He couldn’t tell if he was going to protect him or run out on him - but it was too late to worry about that now.
He just knew that he couldn’t tolerate this guy’s attitude. If he had to die defending his good name - and Jim’s - he would. He had already proved once that he would die for Jim and he could do it again.
But if he could get out of this alive, alive for long enough to take Jim’s hand and say “I do,” then that would be infinitely preferable. Obviously! Jim clearly couldn’t marry a corpse.
“That’s regrettable,” he said levelly, feeling turmoil beneath but keeping his tone as level as possible. “I think our business here is concluded, then.” His heart was hammering in his chest. He hoped Big Guy couldn’t see how hard he was breathing and the sweat that was springing out on his brow.
He was surprised that he’d managed to keep his temper as usually, any kind of name calling - far less hurtful than this - produced the most tempestuous tantrums ever, closely followed by carnage of some sort. But he wanted to keep his dignity. This guy and others like him just weren’t going to win. And he didn’t want to let Jim down by just going off on a killing spree. At least, not yet.
Anyway, these guys looked tough. Mean and tough. They were just waiting for the order to strike. And if he was deserted by his own men, he would clearly be outnumbered. And that would be the end for him.
“Oh, I don’t think so. I don’t think this thing’s over yet.” The mobster took a step toward Oswald.
Oswald reached towards his pocket for his knife. He might just beat him to it if he was lucky.
Just then Gabe stepped out in front of him, putting himself in between Oswald and his assailant. He stood there, a big bear of a man, shielding him. Oswald gave a surprised gasp.
“Oh, I think it is, mister, “ Gabe said.
“Erm, Gabe….” Oswald began, but then the mobster’s men began to draw their guns.
Gabe turned and said, “Guys?” Then all Oswald’s men drew their guns.
“It appears we have a stand-off,” Gabe said smugly, but not moving his position, continuing to keep a screen on Oswald. “Are you gonna drop em or do we fire?”
Oswald couldn’t believe this was happening. Gabe had defended him, and the other men too - without any prompting, or any threats of violence from him! He had thought they would all run out on him. This was what he was used to and this was what he had come to expect when he was up against it like this.
He had thought he was about to die - for real, this time. He had seen Jim’s face in that split second, made his peace with him for leaving him alone yet again.
But he was still here, and breathing, and possibly, safe. He might see Jim again after all! He held his breath, trying not to hope too much.
And then, to his intense relief, Big Guy stepped back and signalled for his men to put down their arms.
Oswald pinched himself to see if he was dreaming….he wasn’t….”Ouch,” he thought.
“You ain’t heard the last of this…” Big Guy said, as he slowly moved away and then left the room, taking his henchmen with him.
“OK guys, stand down,” Gabe told the men. He turned round to face Oswald. “You ok, boss?” he asked.
Oswald’s face was white as a sheet but he smiled warmly at Gabe.
“I am all right,” he said, “But, Gabe - you really surprised me!”
“Well, you stood up for me. I didn’t think you would!”
Gabe chuckled and folded his arms. “Why not?”
“Well to be honest Gabe, I wasn’t expecting you to back me up.”
“Well, to be quite truthful, I always got the feeling that you didn’t really like me. Especially after…. ” Oswald broke off awkwardly.
“After I found out you were marryin a man, you mean?”
“Boss, let me tell ya somethin’,” Gabe said, leaning toward Oswald confidentially. Then he stopped, looked up at the rest of the men and said, “Would you excuse us boys? This is personal, like.”
When they had left, Gabe looked down at Oswald thoughtfully.
“Right,” he said. “What I was gonna say boss is - well, for one thing I can’t stand bullies. I was bullied as a child too, y’know. I ain’t never told anyone that before.”
“You, Gabe?” Oswald was astonished. “Really?”
“Yeah, really. Big ole me. They laughed at me cos of the way I talked. Said I was a dumb ass. Picked on me sometin’ rotten, they did.”
“But why didn’t you just….well, defend yourself? You’re….well....”
“Yeah, a big guy. I know. But that was it, boss. I didn’t like hurtin’ people. It was never my way.”
“So..how did you end up becoming a henchman then?”
“Y’know boss - I have absolutely no idea! I just kind of….drifted into it. Just got picked up on the street one day and then that was that. Seemed like that was the only thing I was qualified to do. And so here I am!”
“Well you are full of surprises, Gabe, I have to say!”
“Well boss, as I was sayin’, if there’s one thing I can’t stand it’s a bully. And if it’s one thing I hate even more, it’s a bully with PREJUDICE. You gotta right to live your life the way you want, and marry who you want. Now, I’m not sayin’ I understand it, exactly,” he said, holding up his hands, “but you gotta right to be with who you wanna be with.”
Oswald’s eyes filled up suddenly. He blinked fast and hard.
“Gabe - that is the most poetic thing I ever heard you say! Come here, you big lummox!” And he went and gave Gabe the biggest bear hug he could manage.
“Whoahh, boss, steady on!” Gabe chuckled, patting Oswald on the back affectionately.
“I will remember this, Gabe. I will never forget it. And don’t worry about your little secret, it is safe with me. I promise.”
Chapter 18: A Uniform Decision
Oswald comes home after a tough day and has a very pleasant surprise.
It's full of cliches, but I thought they both deserved some fluffy fun.
A Uniform Decision
Oswald arrived back at the apartment feeling weary and a tad shaken, but relieved to be home and really looking forward to seeing his fiance again.
“Jim!” he called. “Jim, dear! I’m home!”
He received no answer, but scented the appetising smell of goulash wafting through from the kitchen.
“Mmmm, things are definitely looking up!” he thought.
Whenever Jim made the effort to cook up a goulash he knew he was in for an especially amazing evening.
He took off his coat and jacket and hung them on the coat stand in the hallway. He unknotted and took off his tie and unfastened the top two buttons of his wing collar. Now he could start to breathe again.
He hobbled into the kitchen and found the goulash simmering away merrily in the slow-cooker. Jim had set it on a low heat to keep it warm.
Oswald picked up the oven mitt and lifted the lid on the pot. The smells coming from the fragrant steam and the sight of the generous pieces of meat and vegetables bubbling around in the rich red wine sauce made his mouth water and his heart feel much lighter. Jim really was spoiling him tonight! And he needed that so much….
He replaced the lid and then he became aware of Jim’s presence behind him. His man was very light on his feet but Oswald could always detect that he was there by the smell of the cologne his fiance habitually used. He turned round to find Jim standing there looking at him with a mischievous expression and a twinkle in his eyes.
“Jim! Am I glad to see you….” he exclaimed excitedly, then stopped mid-sentence and stood open-mouthed with astonishment as he saw what his favourite police detective was wearing.
“Oh….Jim….” He looked him over fleetingly - and then checked him out again - a lot more slowly and closely….
Jim had put on his old cop’s uniform. This was a very unexpected turn of events, and a very welcome one too….
“Surprise! Do you like it?” Jim gave Oswald a boyish smile. “I mean - ahem…”
Jim stood back, put his hands on his hips and gave Oswald a look of mock severity.
“Oswald Chesterfield Cobblepot, you have the right to remain….”
He paused for a second for dramatic effect.
“....sexy!” he completed, with a wink and a great big dazzling smile. He fingered the handcuffs suspended from his utility belt and jiggled them suggestively.
“Do I like it? I Iove it - of course. You’re wearing it! Oh, Jim - you look so….well, cute in that uniform! And I love that you read me my rights as well. That was a very good touch and I like the way you adapted it just for me!” Oswald’s eyes sparkled with joy and his dimples grew.
“Glad you liked that part. I thought it was more appropriate for you than the official version.” Jim grinned. “And….do you really like to see me wearing this uniform, Ozzy?”
“How could I not? That colour really sets off your eyes. And the way it fits you….it’s very...erm….cosy....almost like a second skin!” He looked over Jim admiringly again to emphasise his point. ”And, speaking of ‘skin’, Jim dear - I notice that you have had
a shave since we parted this morning.”
“Yeah, I have - do you mind, sweetheart?”
“No, not at all! Anyway, it does go better with the uniform - which as I just said, looks very fetching on you!”
Jim bit his lip, furrowed his brow and rubbed his chin thoughtfully. Oswald was right - he had felt that this outfit called for a clean shaven face. Besides, in spite of Oswald’s liking for his bounty hunter persona, Jim knew that he had been giving his little lover some terrible friction burn in some pretty sensitive places whenever they got ‘up close and personal’ - which, of course, happened very frequently….
“Well, I’m glad you like me in this, Oz,” he smiled gratefully. “Barbara told me the uniform looked silly. She was glad to see the back of it.”
“Whereas I am glad to see you back IN it - get it?!” Oswald quipped, grinning impishly. Jim groaned.
“And by the way, Jim dear - Barbara was, is, and always will be - an idiot!” Oswald continued indignantly. “You look so handsome in it. Very - erm - ARRESTING, in fact!”
“Oh - ha ha, I see - ‘arresting’. Very funny, Oz.” Jim rolled his eyes and grimaced good humouredly.
“Sorry - couldn’t resist that one!” Oswald shrugged.
“But James, please promise me you’ll only ever put that uniform on for me - in private - and for no-one else?”
Jim straightened up and stuck out his manly chest, soldier-style. “Yes, Mr Cobblepot, sir. I promise.”
Oswald sighed contentedly. His hands slid down to Jim’s chest, feeling and searching for the beat of his heart. “Ah, there it goes!” he thought, reassured and comforted to find Jim’s life signs drumming beneath his fingers. He delighted in the sensation of steady pounding against his fingers, and then the feel of his man’s quickening pulse as Jim’s body responded to his touch.
“It’s so good to be home!” he sighed. He screwed up his face for a moment, then relaxed it again. “I’ve had a pig of a day, Jim!”
“Hey - d’you want to talk about it….?” Jim stroked Oswald’s jaw tenderly. His deep blue eyes studied his man’s face closely and anxiously.
“No. No, I’d rather not just yet, Jim. I will tell you about it later. For now I’d rather just unwind….and play with you.” Oswald placed his hands back onto Jim’s shoulders and his eyes and dimples grew large with anticipation.
“Mmmm, that sounds good to me! I’d just love to play with you, Cobblepot.” Jim winked suggestively. “But remember to tell me about what happened today - ok?” he said more solemnly.
“Yes, James - of course!” Oswald nodded emphatically. “Just….just kiss me, Jim. Please.”
“With pleasure.” Jim took Oswald’s head in his hands. Their lips came together and moved in unison as they slowly savoured every second of the experience.
Oswald’s hands swept over Jim’s uniformed body as they kissed. He relished every moment spent touching him, feeling the stiff texture of the navy material of the uniform that clung so closely to his man’s strong, lean body. It was a very sexy, snug fit - but Oswald couldn’t help wondering if Jim felt more than a tad uncomfortable in it.
He wondered if it was anywhere near as unpleasantly confining as his own starched shirts, stiff wing collars and tight waistcoats - his personal battle dress. Jim said he loved to see him in his full regalia and it was good to know that someone appreciated the effort he went to to make himself look as smart and sophisticated as possible - but his formal suits were hardly the most agreeable of apparel to wear.
They must both get out of their constraining garments as soon as possible - so that they could get down to the really important business of their day!
His hands moved down to Jim’s hips and found their way to the holster slung around them. He placed his hand lightly on the top of the holster and fingered the handle of the gun protruding from it.
Jim stopped kissing him, grasped his hand and gently prised it away.
“Be careful, Cobblepot. That’s likely to go off without any warning!” He raised his eyebrow meaningfully.
“Ooh! Is it?” Oswald’s smile stretched wide again. His hand felt for and found the handcuffs on the other side of Jim’s belt.
“So then - are you going arrest me for misbehaving, Detective Gordon?” Oswald raised his own eyebrow suggestively and hopefully.
“Well, yeah - of course, that goes without saying! You are such a bad boy, Cobblepot!”
Oswald chuckled excitedly.
Jim cleared his throat, stood up straight and addressed his little mischief-maker sternly.
“Right, Cobblepot, you have to come with me - I’m taking you in for interrogation.…” Jim fake-frowned and slipped the handcuff onto and clicked it around Oswald’s wrist.
Oswald’s eyes opened wide with delight. Jim stared back at him lustfully. “Let’s go, Cobblepot,” he growled, then led his tethered, giggling little Ozzy off to bed.
They were both very grateful for that slow cooker. It could keep their dinner hot for a very long time….while they warmed up one another….
Chapter 19: It was the Worst of Days and it was the Best of Days
Oswald and Jim have a grown-up talk
It was the Worst of Days and it was the Best of Days
Oswald and Jim have a grown-up talk.
“So you see, Jim - it was one of the worst days, but in a way, it was one of the best days too.”
Oswald had recounted the encounter with Big Guy and his cronies shortly after Jim had helped him bathe - after some pretty lively lovemaking - followed by a delicious dinner, by way of compensation for the ‘pig of a day’ he had said he’d experienced.
He was now in his dressing gown, and was perched on Jim’s lap on their sofa. Jim’s arms were wrapped around him, holding him in place protectively.
“You smell good, Oz,” said Jim.
“Thanks. So do you.”
“Yes, Jim. You always smell good.”
“Ah. Thank you, that’s nice, Oz. But - anyway, sweetheart - about what you told me about Gabe - I’m glad he turned out to be loyal and protected you like that - and saved your life - thank God. I am very grateful to him and I’ll thank him in person as soon as I get the chance.”
“Thanks, Jim. I think he’d appreciate that.”
Jim smoothed back Oswald's damp dark hair and gave him an affectionate little peck on his nose. Oswald giggled. “”Ooh! That tickles!”
“No, no, I don’t mind it - in fact I like it! It tickled me in a good way.” Oswald grinned impishly.
“Ah, well that’s all right then.” Jim gave him another peck and Oswald squealed with delight, wriggling playfully.
“Hey, calm down mister!” laughed Jim. “This is a serious talk we’re having, don’t ya know.”
Oswald pursed up his lips and feigned petulance. “But I want to play, Jim.”
“Later, Cobblepot,” Jim fake growled. “Grown up talk now, OK?”
Oswald sighed. “OK then Jim, let’s get it over with. Are you going to give me a stern lecture? I like those.” He fluttered his raven lashes provocatively.
“Will you just stop that, Oswald Cobblepot?” chuckled Jim. “You know what that does to me!”
He gave Oswald a squeeze and kissed him on the cheek. He was afraid lip kissing might be rather too distracting - and might lead to other activities that he didn’t want to initiate - at least, not yet. And he knew that his crafty little Ozzy was well aware of that.
“Now, seriously - listen to me, sweetheart,” he resumed determinedly - “the risk you took….”
“I know, I know….I know you think I probably shouldn’t have been honest. And I suppose you’ll say next that I shouldn’t wear my ring…”
“Well, it wouldn’t be such a bad idea to leave it off sometimes, Oz. I mean, for that kind of occasion, anyway. It does kind of, well, make you a bit of a target....”
“No, Jim! I’m not taking it off. You put it there and there it stays,” Oswald retorted passionately, his azure eyes flashing indignantly.
“OK, OK.” Jim stroked Oswald soothingly then squeezed him tightly. “I’m sorry. I know you want to show it off and be proud. I just worry about you, that’s all.”
”James, James - dear James! I am touched, but there’s no need for you to worry. Especially now I know the guys have my back. That makes me really happy, y’know, Jim. Almost as delirious as knowing I have you….”
Chapter 20: Duty Calls and Cobblepot Comforts
Jim returns to the GCPD, then returns home to Oswald for some 'Cobblepot home comforts'
Hearts Grow Fonder - Duty Calls and Cobblepot Comforts
“Hey, Harv.” Jim came on like he’d never been away and this was just another working day. He had thought that this would be the best approach. The other guys had been frostily polite to him, which was fine with him - he wasn’t really that bothered about their opinions - but he would at least like to make up and have a proper ‘warm up’ with his long-standing partner.
“Hey yourself, James.” Harvey pushed his hat back and scratched his beard thoughtfully. “Welcome back.” He nodded briefly.
“Thanks!” Jim grinned widely. He hoped he wasn’t over-compensating.
“Well, I’m just gonna get myself a coffee. Want one?” Harvey had his ‘Wow isn’t that a tempting offer’ sarcasm in his voice, which Jim knew and loved so well. The GCPD coffee was legendary, and not in a good way.
“Yeah, that’d be great thanks. It’s cream and....”
“One sugar, yeah, I remember. It’s not been that long, Jimbo.” Harvey cocked his head and raised his eyebrow pointedly.
“OK, OK,” Jim conceded with a humble smile.
Well, Jim observed, at least things seemed to be pretty normal around here - as normal as things could possibly get at the GCPD. The good-natured banter was already flowing as freely as the weak as water coffee and so far it was far less bitter.
He never took his coffee with cream or sugar at home. He felt it wasn’t necessary to ‘adulterate’ good coffee. He’d only started stocking up on sugar since he’d moved in with Oswald….his little gangster liked his beverages strong and sweet, “Like my men - that is, you, of course, my sexy detective!” he had once declared....in such a provocative way that it had made Jim’s heart fibrillate and his knees knock.
Now he was just waiting to be summoned by Barnes. He would want to ‘re-introduce’ Jim back in to the force. ‘Debriefing’, as he would call it. He really wasn’t looking forward to that, but what must be done must be done, and got over with - as soon as possible.
He knew he would much rather be ‘de-briefed’ by Oswald….which would, of course, be a far more pleasant experience….
He had more than a slight suspicion that Oswald had been behind the whole ‘reinstatement with paid leave’ deal. It had all seemed too good to be true and very untypical of anything that Barnes would be likely to think up or offer - let alone come to him cap in hand and lay out on a silver platter. Which was exactly what he had done….
He had quizzed Oswald about it on more than one occasion, but his cute little trickster had been more than a tad evasive - and had then distracted Jim in his inimitable fashion, meaning, of course, that they had ended up in bed yet again.
Oswald had reminded Jim that there were far more worthwhile - and fun - things to do with his mouth than to ask pesky questions with it. Afterwards, Jim had conveniently forgotten all about his original train of thought. His clever little Cobblepot always came out on top, sometimes literally as well as metaphorically….
He was mostly glad to be back at work - of course. Being a cop was in his blood and there were limits to how long he could play at being Oswald’s ‘house husband’ without getting bored. Having said that, a large part of him already missed his sexy little psycho acutely.
He really had it bad for his bad boy. His physical need for him hadn’t diminished one iota. He couldn’t believe how much time he spent daydreaming about him and wanting him when they were apart. He was still in the first throes of love and he couldn’t wait to reunite with his cute little kingpin and demonstrate that to him.
His fabulous fiance could look forward to, at the very least, a good kiss and a cuddle at the end of the day….
As he was effectively ‘self-employed’, Oswald often managed to get home early - unless there was something especially ‘difficult’ that regretfully demanded his ‘personal attention’. But he usually managed to arrive back at the apartment no later than 5, even if it meant him having to go out again - and that, of course, had suited Jim just fine when he had been ‘on extended vacation’.
He hoped that they wouldn’t have to cross paths in their professional capacities - which would, of course, be awkward, to say the least. Jim wished to delay the evil moment when they came upon each other in such a predicament for as long as possible.
Oswald had always endeavoured not to involve Jim directly in his shenanigans, and had mostly been successful, for which Jim was extremely thankful.
They were both aware that they had a common goal - and that was to ensure and maintain peace and order in their city. They clung to that idea like two drowning men would hold onto two sides of the same liferaft, so that it would stay balanced and afloat.
They were too much in love to give up on each other. Now that they had finally connected as soulmates, they really didn’t want to throw it all away.
They concurred that bringing up the subject of ‘work’ at home should be taboo. ‘Silence is Golden’ was a saying that seemed to have been coined just for them. After all, as Oswald was keen to point out, other professional couples exercised a similar rule to ensure that their work issues didn't intrude into their private life. This principle had extra significance for them in their special situation, and they were both glad of it and willing to stick to it.
There were exceptions to the rule. Jim was, of course, eager to hear about any hurt or trauma that Oswald had sustained in his daily dealings, so that he could provide comfort. Oswald also wanted to know if any person or organisation posed any threat to his handsome police detective, so that he could deal with this accordingly. He wouldn’t tolerate anything or anyone that might harm his beloved James.
Although Jim was glad to be returning to the GCPD and his usual routine, he also looked forward to going back home - naturally..
He was so looking forward to laying his eyes - and his hands - on his lover again. He visualised his delicious dandy greeting him - either in his waistcoat and shirt sleeves, or, if he had got home much earlier, newly bathed and wrapped up in his silk dressing gown. Jim visualised him with his black locks wet and shining from the shower and his exposed, flushed skin peeping out from the opening in his robe, begging for Jim’s lips to be kissing it. Jim would so look forward to doing that, and then later, enjoying unwrapping and appreciating the parts that were still concealed.
Whether unwrapping or unbuttoning, he would enjoy it very much….but he got to wondering how great it would be to help Ozzy to re-robe too. Dressing him up might be just as much fun as stripping him down….so he would ensure to make this suggestion.
He remembered the way they had been with one another last night. He really couldn’t remember feeling so quite so comfortable and natural with anyone else with whom he’d been intimate.
Oswald had, of course, no-one to compare him with, but he hoped that Oswald felt the same about him.
His cute little gangster had been so shy and bashful the first time they had both stepped over a threshold. Jim had been the only man to share a lover’s intimacy with Oswald - and vice versa, of course.
Oswald evidently accepted, understood and loved Jim for who - and what - he truly was. This touched Jim’s heart and he was keen to demonstrate that he returned Oswald’s unconditional love and respect. He also wanted to atone for all the bad behaviour and disrespect that he had previously shown towards him.
He’d given him a ring as a sign of his love and commitment, but then he had almost ruined his romantic gesture by suggesting that Oswald remove it in case of reprisals and abuse. He had sought to show that he cared about Oswald’s safety, but had inadvertently been insulting and hurtful. He should have realised and respected that Oswald would want to show off the evidence of their love - especially after he had risked life and limb to defend it. And now his henchmen had proved their loyalty beyond a doubt - which Jim was so glad and grateful for - and so there had been no need for Jim to make that remark at all.
Oswald had forgiven him - as always. His magnanimity seemed to know no limits when it came to Jim’s transgressions and faux pas both past and present. Jim smiled, wistfully reflecting on that.
Since he had become Oswald’s ‘other half’, he had found his imagination running away with him on a regular basis. He had invented a fantasy in his head in which his marriage to Oswald - the self-styled ‘King of Gotham’ - had brought about peace between the criminal underworld and the GCPD. It would be much like the European royal alliances he had learned about in his school history classes. That had been a particularly outlandish scenario, brought about randomly in one of his idler moments, but it had cheered him up.
And at least now, he dared to dream.
Each morning, he awoke in their new king-sized bed to find Oswald’s tousled, raven-haired head lying on the pillow next to his. More often than not, Oswald would be facing him, with his arm across Jim and his slender body pressed up close. If his lover was still asleep, he would get the chance to look at that pretty slumbering face with its long raven lashes. He would move up even closer and brush his mouth against Oswald’s cherry-sweet lips, feeling their velvety softness and catching wafts of his warm breath before he blinked awake and treated Jim to the sight of his flashing sapphire eyes. Jim knew then that he just had to believe in miracles.
His beautiful boy was almost killing him with kindness, as if to make up for all that time when it seemed that they just wanted to kill each other….although Jim had known, as soon as he had seen him all beaten up and scared in Harvey’s boot, that he could never take Oswald’s life.
He remembered how one look at Oswald’s wide, spooked, incandescent blue eyes, and his bloodied nose and crumpled, dishevelled clothes, had caused his heart to miss a beat and his stomach to turn a somersault. He’d tried to deny it so many times, but he had known deep down that he had belonged to Oswald right from that moment. He had felt something which was far beyond pity. He’d not allowed himself to admit it for a very long time…. but that fateful day in the alleyway had changed all that. And he didn’t regret it one bit.
“Hey, earth to James! Hello-oo!”
Jim flinched and came to.
Harvey was standing before him with two steaming mugs of GCPD coffee, which smelt marginally better than he knew it was going to taste.
“A dollar for ya thoughts - no, forget it, I’ll save my money. Let me guess - you were thinking about lover boy, right?” Harvey winked cheekily and took a sip.
Jim looked at Harvey and frowned, then raised his chin defiantly and put his hands on his hips.
“I assume by ‘lover boy’ you mean Oswald - my fiance?” he challenged, with a growl.
“Hey, hey, cease fire, soldier boy!” protested Harvey, holding up the steaming mug like a flag of surrender. “That wasn’t meant to be a missile. Or a cheap shot. Yep - I meant OSWALD.” He smiled and shrugged apologetically.
“That’s ok Harv. I guess I shouldn’t be so sensitive.” Jim relaxed his face, reached out and took the mug from Harvey’s hand. “Thanks,” he added.
“Don’t mention it Jim, you had a right to be touchy. I made a snide comment about your boyfriend - sorry, I mean fiance! Anyway - I’ve done a lot of thinking since you walked out, Jim. I shouldn’t have gone off in a huff like that when you told me about your - um - betrothal to Co - um, Oswald. I should’ve been more - well, open-minded, I guess.” Harvey shuffled his feet and looked uncomfortable.
“You were just taken by surprise, that’s all. Forget it!” Jim grinned magnanimously, throwing his partner a bone. He raised up his mug.
“Let’s drink - to starting over!” he beamed, and Harvey echoed, “Yep - starting over!” and clinked his mug against Jim’s. Then they drank in unison, screwed up their noses and shuddered.
“I see the coffee is still up to the usual high standards,” Jim remarked sarcastically, then gave a wry chuckle.
“Yep, you got it,” Harvey shrugged fatalistically, then grinned. “Some things never change, right - partner?”
“Right, partner. Erm - by the way - it’s great to be back, Harv.”
“It’s great to have you back, Jim….”
A berobed, exceptionally fragrant Oswald greeted Jim with a wide, dimpled smile and a glass of red wine, all of which Jim found to be most welcome. He gave Ozzy an emphatic kiss and thanked him for the wine.
“My pleasure, James,” Oswald replied silkily, his feline smile widening.
They both sat down on the sofa.
“Well, anyway, Oz, can’t say I’m not glad to see the back of today,” announced Jim wearily. He took a sip of wine and gave a little sigh of relief.
“Oh? How so, Jim? Thought you were looking forward to going back.” Oswald raised his raven eyebrow quizzically. He had had a good, productive day - not that he was going to share the gory details with Jim, of course.
“Well, yeah - I was glad to be back at work - but, well, I kept thinking about you, Oz. I have to say….I mean, when I made an arrest...or someone said to me, ‘Something's going down in the Narrows’, my heart turned over and my chest tightened - I was so scared it would be you. I didn't want it to be you, and then I would think, if it is you, what will I do? Luckily it wasn’t, and I know you do your best to keep out of my way, and I do my best to keep out of your way, during the day, but I’m..I’m quite afraid that one day..obviously, we’re going to clash…”
“Jim, Jim, “ Oswald interjected, “don't talk about that - please. We got through this day and we made it through unscathed - just look at the both of us! We’ve made it back home, I’m in my dressing gown and I’m giving you a glass of wine and you’re looking at me and you’re making my knees go to jelly! And the fact that you worry about these things makes my knees go even weaker. I’m so glad I’ve got you , Jim. All this trauma and all this anxiety about these contradictions we have is so worth it because...well….Oh, Jim, when I look into those eyes of yours- your bewildered blue eyes- I just know it’s all worthwhile. I know we belong together and you know we belong together - so please, stop stressing dear, drink your wine and give me another kiss, and then we will have dinner, and then.. ..then we’ll see what else we can do....”
Chapter 21: A Henchman Calls
Jim worries when Oswald goes off the radar. He receives a surprise visitor, who may or may not put his mind at rest...
A Henchman Calls
Jim glanced at his watch. It was getting kinda late now - he wondered when Oswald was going to turn up….
He always tried not to worry. He knew now that Oz’s gang was loyal to him - all of the guys had his back, and that pleased him no end. Besides, Oz was a canny little trickster when all was said and done. He was a born survivor. In Oswalds own words, he was “quite difficult to kill”.
He had shrugged and grinned demonically when he’d said it, all those moons ago - when he had turned up on Jim’s doorstep, and surprised him by being alive after all.
Jim had felt a huge surge of relief when he had been faced with this apparition, but he had tried so hard not to show it. He hadn’t wanted Oswald to know how he really felt, and so he had spoken to him in his habitual brusque manner.
However, he had tried to dissuade him from putting himself in danger by continuing his obsessive search for the group who ruled Gotham - who Jim knew was the powerful and deadly Court of Owls. He knew Oswald could come to serious harm if he found them and had wanted to protect him by warning him off.
But - of course - Oswald had taken no notice of Jim’s ‘friendly advice’. Thankfully, Jim’s fears for his friend’s safety had been unfounded, which seemed to back up Oswald’s claim that he was invincible. In fact, Oswald had ended up saving Jim’s life - not for the first time - by turning up in the nick of time, to which Jim had responded ungratefully - as was his wont. This was another favour that had received no thanks from Jim, and that Jim had felt bad about ever since.
Jim continued to fret that his ‘invincible’ gangster could still come to harm. He had a titanium spirit, and his brain was as bright as a polished diamond - but his body wasn’t made of steel. He was still flesh and blood, when all was said and done. And things could still go horribly wrong if the circumstances were right.
He always urged Oswald to contact him if he happened to be in a tight spot - if all else failed and he ended up needing Jim’s protection. But he had heard nothing from him all day, and although no news should be good news, in Oz’s case it was unlike him not to be in touch at all - no matter how busy or occupied he was.
He usually managed at least to send Jim a quick reassuring text, just to say “Miss you,” or “Don’t wait up,” or , when Oz was feeling a tad more mischievous and humorous, “I’m alive, Jim!”
If he had tried to call and Jim’s phone happened to be off - or if Jim was ‘otherwise engaged’ and unable to pick up his calls, Oswald would leave him a voicemail message.
If Oswald was feeling out of sorts, the message would sound cross and panicky: “Jim, your phone is turned off. Why?! Please call me back when you pick this up!”
Jim would respond immediately, thinking it was a life or death situation, more often than not to find that Oz just wanted him to pick him up some peanut butter from the grocery store on the way back from work.
Ozzy loved his peanut butter - which had to be smooth, not crunchy. Jim made the mistake of getting the crunchy variety just once - and he had never forgotten it. His sweet little Ozzy had thrown a tetchy tantrum, insisting that it had to be taken back to the store and replaced right away. Then when Jim had returned, bearing the correct kind of his little devil’s favourite spread, Ozzy had become extremely remorseful, nuzzling up to him, and saying ‘Sorry I shouted, dear,” in his soft, seductive voice. He had explained that he had had low blood sugar and this had drastically affected his mood. Jim had forgotten to be angry, and had just melted and forgiven him - as usual.
And the make up sex had been out of this world! He hadn’t realised just how creative Oz could get with a jar of peanut butter….he had made sure that they were well stocked up on it since then, and had not minded so much when his fiance and he happened to have a tiff….knowing what he could possibly look forward to later....
If Oz was in a more stable state of mind, his message would, of course, be sweeter. A particularly memorable one of this type went: “Hey, James dear, it’s me - Ozzy! I’m sorry, I’ll be back late tonight. Things here are getting somewhat complex (don’t worry though, dear, I’m in no danger, things are just getting a tad annoying, shall we say, ha ha!). Anyway, I’ll be back as soon as I can - don’t wait up. Keep the bed warm for me - I’ll be there as soon as I can! Oh, and by the way - love you, Jim. Mwah, that’s me kissing you, ok?”
Jim had kept that recording, filing it away in his archived message folder. When he was having a bad day and feeling low or lonely without Oz, he would play it over and over again. If he was completely alone at home, waiting for Oswald to return, he would put it on speaker and carry it around listening to Oswald’s dulcet tones, and it would warm his heart and make him break out in a smile. It was such a beautiful message, and hearing Oswald end with ‘Love you, Jim,” and his emphatic kiss, was the icing on the cake.
Jim had also snaffled a fragrant silk square that his dapper little dandy had once put aside - after dabbing it on his face to freshen himself up - and then forgotten all about. Jim had picked it up and pressed it to his face, feeling the soft silk soothing his skin and inhaling Oswald’s enticing sandalwood and cedarwood scent. Jim had hung onto the handkerchief, keeping it inside the breast pocket of his coat. The smell of the cologne had long since faded but Jim still didn’t want to part with it and consign it to the laundry basket.
He had never thought he could get so ridiculously sentimental over anyone. It just wasn’t in his makeup - Jim Gordon, the strong silent type who hardly ever showed his emotions. He could still hardly believe how much Oswald had got under his skin and how passionate he felt about him. He knew he should probably be embarrassed about it, but he wasn’t. And he didn’t care that he wasn’t. He didn’t give two hoots if people made fun of him or criticised him for being so transparent about how much he loved his little gangster. He only gave a damn about what Oswald thought - and it was patently obvious to him what that was!
However, the reason behind Oswald’s continued eerie silence was something that he cared very much about! He was really unnerved that his fiance still hadn’t been in touch. He had resorted to chasing up Oswald, the boot being on the other foot for a change - and each time he had tried, Oswald’s phone had been switched off….
In an attempt to distract himself from his anxious reflections, Jim thought about what they would have to eat once Oswald arrived home. Because he would be coming back - of course he would!
Jim had bought a quiche for supper, and some dressed salad to go with it. The weather was too warm for cooking, and he’d had an inkling that Oz was going to get in late. He would only need to whip the food out of the fridge and onto the plate when his tired-out fiance came in through the door - which he hoped would be very soon. A glass of fine wine and a light but tasty supper, accompanied by a kiss and a cuddle, would be all that the doctor ordered.
That morning, Oswald had warned him that ‘something big was going down,’ followed swiftly by his reassurance that “There’s no need to worry though Jim, it won’t affect you - I’ll make sure of that.”
“I wasn’t worrying about that,” Jim had retorted, and he had reached out and grabbed Oswald’s hand, stopping him in his tracks as he was about to hurry out of the door.
Oswald had turned sharply and given Jim a withering glance. “Jim….please….I need to go, now!” he had insisted, his lips pouting with indignation and then tightening into a thin line of petulance.
Jim had furrowed his brow sternly. “Listen - Oswald - it’s you I’m concerned about. Look, sweetheart - you will be careful, won’t you? And if you need my help, please - call me, OK?” He had squeezed Oswald’s hand hard.
“Yes, yes dear, of course I will,” Ozzy had replied placatingly. “Now, if you don’t mind..I need to go….see you later, Jim.” He had swung in and given Jim a quick peck on the lips and turned away to leave, but Jim had refused to release Oswald’s hand, holding on to it for dear life.
Oswald had turned back again with a crabby look of forced patience. “Let me go please, James,” he had demanded stiffly, tugging away at Jim’s hand to try and get free.
But Jim had moved forward and trapped his lover in an ardent, pythonesque embrace.
“Keep still, mister, you’re not leaving yet!” he’d rasped, as Oswald had attempted in vain to wriggle out of Jim’s vice-like grip. His deep blue gaze had stared back at Oswald’s startled face with grim determination.
“Jim, Jim, for God’s sake - don’t! I need to leave now!” Oswald had protested frantically.
“Hold still Cobblepot!” Jim had growled, undeterred by Oswald’s urgent, panicking tone. “D’you call that tiny little kiss a proper goodbye? This needs to last us all day long…..” And his lips had latched onto Oswald’s mouth and initiated a long, lingering, passionate smooch that had made Oswald‘s toes curl up inside his shiny patent shoes.
Oswald had stopped struggling, clearly realising that resistance was futile. Jim had felt Oswald’s body go limp inside his arms and his sweet mouth finally, willingly, surrendering to the action of Jim’s lips. His shallow breaths became slow and steady, and his hands slid up to Jim’s chest, his fingers grasping and twisting the material on Jim’s shirt.
“There - that’s much better, don’t ya think?” Jim had remarked, as he had released Oswald from his amorous clutches, and after their mouths had parted with a soft sucking sound.
Oswald had huffed, then cleared his throat and hastily fastened up his coat, a self-conscious blush appearing on his cheeks. He had quickly preened himself, pulling at the little tufts of his newly-vamped hair to make sure that they were still in place.
“I hate you, Jim Gordon. Now I AM going to be late!” he had announced primly.
“Well, you would purse up those pretty lips at me, Oswald Cobblepot!” Jim had retorted playfully.
“Oh, so it’s my own fault, is it?” Oswald had rebutted brightly, unable to resist the urge to be playful in return. “Well, I’m not sure how I will explain that to my eight o’clock appointment - which will now be more like eight-thirty! Still, never mind, I suppose it was worth it….it’s a shame though that you started something I don’t have time to finish….” He had arched his eyebrow suggestively before finally making his escape.
Jim jumped as he heard the doorbell ring. He only then realised that he was smiling. The memory of that incredible goodbye clinch had made him drift off to a kind of temporary Nirvana.
His smile instantly became a frown - then became a smile again just as quickly.
Could it be Oswald? Had he forgotten his key? Naaaa, he never forgot his key. Still, there was a first time for everything. He could always hope.
The bell started ringing again, accompanied by loud, urgent knocking.
“OK, OK, hold your fire - I’m coming!” Jim shouted out as he marched to the door. He flung it open, fully prepared to give Oswald a good-humoured reprimand for being so raucous and impatient.
“Ah, um, hi there, Detective Gordon.”
Jim’s heart sank like a stone….what the hell was HE doing here?
“Erm - can I come in?” Gabe asked tentatively. He shuffled his feet and looked uncomfortable.
“Sure.” Jim knitted his brows in bewilderment as he stepped aside to allow Gabe’s colossal form to cross over the threshold.
This was a surprise - and not a pleasant one. Instead of his pretty, dapper, elegant little gent, here was his gent’s gigantic, shambling henchman.
He suddenly came out in a cold sweat. Why would Gabe be calling around here - when his boss was nowhere to be seen, as well as being out of contact for the whole day?
“So, Gabe,” he said levelly, trying his best to sound calm and matter-of-fact. He put his hands on his hips, Detective-Gordon-style. “What can I do for you?””
“Well, y’see, Detective Gordon - well, it’s about the boss…”
“It’s about Oswald?” Jim said, feeling and hearing a note of panic in his voice. “Is...well, is everything ok?”
“Erm yeah, well, sorta....”
“What do you mean, ‘sorta’?” Jim heard the fear threaten to escape out through his lips. His voice had a tremor in it that was hard to disguise. He tried to swallow down his fear.
“He..well, he won’t be comin’ home…” Gabe looked apologetic.
“Not comin’ - I mean, not coming home?!” Jim almost jumped down Gabe’s throat.
“Hey, now, just a second, Detective Gordon! I was just goin’ to say he won’t be comin’ home until late. He’s takin’ a while to - erm - conclude his business, if you get my drift!” Gabe chuckled and winked meaningfully.
“Oh..oh, right. He’s just going to be late....OK...OK…..” Jim was suddenly aware that he was shaking and his mouth had gone dry. His heart was banging in his chest and he was breathing hard. He wiped his hand across his brow and sighed with intense relief.
“Ohhhhhhh wait a minute - I geddit - you thought somethin’ had, well, happened to him?”
“Well - he hadn’t come home yet, I’d heard nothing from him - and then you came alone, looking and sounding concerned, so….yes, Gabe, I did think something might have happened to him.”
Jim spoke with forced patience, as if addressing a slow-witted child. He fought off the overwhelming urge to add, “You dimwit! You almost scared me to death!”
“Awww, no, he’s okay. He’s always ok, that one! As I said before - he’s just gonna be late. His phone battery died, see, so he couldn’t call - and he knew you’d worry, so he sent me round to tell ya. Sorry ‘bout the misunderstanding.” Gabe grinned sheepishly and folded his hands in front of him humbly.
Jim didn’t know whether to punch Gabe in the face for giving him such a fright or hug him for then putting his mind at rest. He decided to do neither. This was Gabe, after all.
But in any case, he was highly relieved to know that Oswald would be coming home to him in one piece.
He suddenly wondered why Oswald had sent round his chief henchman to deliver such a straightforward message. Surely there were others who were lower down in the ranks who could have performed such a simple task - and maybe even expressed themselves less clumsily?
“Anyway, Detective Gordon - I’d better be gettin’ back….”
“Wait, Gabe,” Jim interjected, “Before you go, there’s something I want to say to you.”
Jim remembered that he owed Gabe a huge debt of gratitude for saving his fiance’s life. His crafty little Cobblepot must have had an ulterior motive for sending Gabe on this routine errand.
“Um - there is?” Gabe looked puzzled.
“Yes there is. Gabe, I just want to thank you for what you did the other day - when Oswald was in danger, and you and all the other men stood up for him and protected him.”
“Awww, well, that was nuttin’....I was just doin’ my job, y’know,” grinned Gabe bashfully.
“No Gabe, it wasn’t nut - it wasn’t nothing, and you weren’t just doing your job. You stood by him and stayed loyal and you put your own life on the line for him. You can’t know how much that means to both of us. I could...well, I could have lost him that day, he was brave and I’m proud of him for that, but it could have cost him his life. I’m thankful you were there to back him up and keep him out of harm’s way.”
“No problem. It was my pleasure, Detective Gordon - really. As I said to the boss, if there’s one thing I can’t stand - it’s a bully, and if it’s one thing I hate even more - it’s a bully with PREJUDICE. Erm - congratulations, by the way.” He coughed awkwardly and looked away for a second.
“Thanks, Gabe,” Jim smiled. “That means a lot too.”
“AND,” Gabe continued, “Between you and me, I felt SO bad for the boss when his mother got murdered by those Galavans. Really got me, here.” He laid his hand on his heart. “He was devastated, poor fella, and no wonder, I said to myself. A mother’s love - well, there ain’t nuttin’ like it, and that Galavan, well, he took it from him. I offered to whack that sonofabitch for him, but he would NOT hear of it, no sir, he said….”
“Erm, OK Gabe, anyway - thanks again,” Jim frowned. “Please don’t let me hold you up any longer….”
Oswald was delighted with the welcome he received when he got through the door.
“Thank God - it’s you! At last!” Jim embraced him, then cupped his face and gave him an emphatic kiss.
“Oh - Jim - such enthusiasm, such passion - I love it!”
Oswald kissed Jim back and fluttered his lashes at him. Jim visibly weakened.
“Here, let me do that for you,” Jim insisted, as Oswald went to take off his coat. “You must be exhausted!”
“Oh, thank you Jim - you’re a gentleman! Yes, I am a tad weary, I have to admit!” Oswald sighed gratefully, as he stood and allowed Jim to disrobe him.
Jim slowly and carefully removed Oswald’s jacket. Once he was free, Oswald groaned with relief, yawning and then stretching out his arms like a bird preparing for flight.
The rich purple silk lining of the jacket, as well as the matching silk waistcoat, was now revealed to Jim - along with Oswald’s slender waist and hips and fine angular shoulders. The sight of that gorgeous physique was something that Jim looked forward to every day.
“Go and sit down and take the weight off your feet while I hang this up,” Jim invited.
“Thank you, James.” Oswald limped off towards the couch, pulling at the knot in his tie as he went.
He sat down wearily, finished taking off his tie and unfastened the top two buttons on his stiff shirt, as he always did after a ‘hard day’s kingpinning’, as he liked to put it.
He cast aside the tie joyfully and sat back on the sofa, closing his tired, dry eyes...he just needed to rest them for a moment….
When he opened them he realised that he must have fallen asleep.
Oswald blinked his bleary eyes and then focussed on Jim’s smiling face gazing at him sympathetically as he stood over him bearing a glass of red wine.
“Hmmmm. Mr Cobblepot, maybe I should pack you straight off to bed! You look done in!”
“No, no Jim, please - I am fine. I would love a glass of wine - thank you! Go and pour yourself one while you are at it.”
“There’s quiche in the fridge if you’re hungry too. Did you eat at all today?”
Oswald looked coy and bit his lip, but said nothing.
“I knew it! Oh Oz, you must be starving by now!”
“Erm - well, I am feeling rather peckish, although I thought I’d ‘gone past it’ by now, as they say! I would love some quiche. Erm...have you eaten, Jim?”
“Erm, yeah, I had something earlier..” Jim lied, but Oswald could see right through it.
“No you didn’t - you’re just being polite! Honestly, James! We’re as bad as one another!” Oswald huffed, rolling his eyes.
“Yeah, I know. Well, we can make up for it now.”
He kissed Oswald and handed him the wine glass. He went away and came back bearing a plate laden with slices of Quiche Lorraine and some napkins.
They sat side by side and demolished the whole plateful, washing it down with the wine.
“That’s better,” Oswald sighed contentedly, patting his abdomen with satisfaction. “Jim, you are spoiling me!”
”Nonsense! Now - sweetheart - just relax.” Jim got to his knees and started to unlace Oswald’s right shoe.
“Oh, Jim - you angel. I couldn’t face taking them off myself! And they are killing my feet….” Oswald almost cried with gratitude.
“That’s what I thought….just take it easy, right?”
“I certainly will, Jim dear. Thank you.”
Oswald yawned emphatically, covering his mouth politely. He had been sorely tried, but at least it was now all behind him for another day….and now, his gorgeous man was being so kind and generous...which made all his problems seem to fade into insignificance.
He gave an intense sigh of satisfaction as Jim removed his shoes.
Once his feet were completely free of their shackles, he wiggled his toes, chuckling gleefully.
“Ohhh, James - dear James! I cannot express to you just how fabulous that feels!” He leaned back in his chair, stretching himself out like a contented cat.
He glanced down at Jim, who was still kneeling at his feet. “I love you, Detective Gordon!” he declared, his blue eyes misted with emotion.
“Ditto - beautiful,” Jim grinned. “Anyway - I bet you wonder why I’m still kneeling down here on the floor, right?”
“Well, yes, I was a tad curious…..”
“It’s just that...I bet your feet are still hurting - right?” Jim remarked pointedly.
Oswald nodded slowly. “Actually, Jim dear - yes, they are feeling pretty sore.”
“OK then, well, allow me….”
Jim peeled off the sock on Oswald’s right foot slowly and carefully, smiling up at him. “Would you like a foot massage?” he asked.
“Ooh - would I?!” Oswald exclaimed in the affirmative, his eyes lighting up and his long raven lashes fluttering with childlike excitement. “Erm...the only thing is, Jim - I hope my feet don’t smell bad. They’ve done a lot of hard work for me today!”
“They don’t. They don’t smell bad at all. They smell very fresh and clean, Oz.”
“Ahh, good. That deodorant really does do what it says on the tin!” Oswald chuckled.
“Clearly. You have pretty feet, too - did I ever tell you that?” Jim took hold of Oswald’s foot gently, supporting his heel with his right hand and stroking its sole lightly with his left thumb.
“Ohhhh - do I really? Well, erm, no, don’t think you did, but..thank you - ooh that does feel good….”
Jim continued to stroke Oswald’s foot with soft, featherlight movements, spurred on by many sounds of encouragement from his fatigued little fiance. Then he started rubbing the ball of Oswald’s foot with firm circular motions. “Oh, yes!” Oswald groaned, “That feels good, Jim….so good….”
“I’m sorry I got so grumpy with you this morning,” Oswald said. Jim’s hands had just given his feet and ankles an extremely thorough and therapeutic massage, and he was feeling remarkably mellow and well-disposed. “You are an angel, James dear. I feel so much better now. My feet - and my legs - they feel better too, Jim. Especially - erm, you know - the problem one. It’s nowhere near as painful now! You really do have healing hands, y’know.”
“D’you think so? Well, that’s good, Oz - I’m glad to do it for you - and I enjoyed doing it to you. And - well, about this morning... please don’t apologise for being angry with me. You were worried about being late, and I was kinda out of order really. I wanted a proper kiss, and I was being selfish about it - I wasn’t listening to you.”
“James - let me confess something to you. Even though I was late for my meeting, and even though I was cross with you, it was worth it to have that beautiful kiss from you! I enjoyed it very much.”
“Oh, Oswald. I’m so glad you feel that way about it. It was a great kiss, wasn’t it? Anyway, I don’t know about you, but now I think I’m ready to hit the hay….”