Oswald's hand reached out to pat his knee as they drove away from the Tri-State Savings & Loan Bank. "You did the right thing."
Did I? he wondered, looking out the window at the slick city streets that were passing by at all too slow of a pace. His heart hurt.
"You were right. She's using me."
"Finally!" Oswald had exclaimed enthusiastically, yet sarcastically. "So much for you being smart now."
"Most brilliant minds are often blind to the most obvious truths."
"Fine. And you came to me -?"
"Because that lovestruck moron, Ed is floating down a river of dopamine deep within the primitive reward circuit of my brain and I need you to help me drown him." He paused and said firmly, "For good."
He felt it as clear as day against that wall under the staircase at First Gotham National Bank, his cock deep inside of her. Love. A sweat had broken out on his face and mingled with her own as they were cheek to cheek, one set of hands entwined. Fucking. His fingers began to shake. She had him wrapped around her little finger and she knew it. Reveled in it.
It made him weak, but he found he couldn't help himself. As he neared the brink, he tenderly whispered, "Lee" and she moaned, bucked beneath him. It was almost too mu –
"Well, well, well . . ." The familiar sarcasm of Oswald's voice rang out through the bank that they had been robbing in the middle of the night. The smaller man mockingly pretended to look at a watch on his wrist. "Looks like it's time we get going. Shall we?"
Oswald's lips twisted up into an annoying little smirk at having caught his fellow conspirators in the act.
He tugged at his pants, pulling them back on none too gracefully as Lee put herself back together as well and sauntered on past him, leaving the two men alone in the wake of her delicious perfume.
"I wasn't finished," he hissed quietly.
Oswald looked down at the bulge in his pants. "Apparently not."
He had made Lee promise that they'd mix business with pleasure during their bank heists going forward. Told her he was tired of being strung along. And she had agreed.
Little did she know it was all part of Oswald's grand plan.
"A teller's station?"
"Yeah," he said huskily, taking her lips in his, pressing her against it.
Her hands wrapped around his neck as she murmured, "I like the sound of that" against his lips.
He growled and turned her around, shoved up her skirt, pushed her down onto the counter, and penetrated her. She reached out for the bullet-proof glass of the booth in front of her and pressed her palms flat against it – pressed back against his thrusts. And she was nowhere near quiet.
Her cries could be heard from all over the bank and he worried that Oswald would interrupt them again. And he wanted more of her. So much more. He grabbed her ass, fingers digging in, thrusting into her hot, slick wetness over and over again.
And speak of the devil, just as he began to groan uncontrollably and lose himself in her, Oswald showed up with a smug grin of his face. He understood that Oswald had a plan, but still . . .
"Not now, Oswald," he turned and growled at him.
"Keep going," Lee begged from underneath him. "Please."
"Of course, dear," he said softly, touching her hair, letting his hand run down her back. And then he resumed thrust -
"I don't think so," Oswald said and pressed the button for the silent alarm that was right there next to them underneath the counter.
"Oswald!" He was so frustrated it was unbelievable.
"What was that all about?" He charged Oswald after catching up with him at the old Falcone estate, Lee long ago having left for The Narrows with their haul of the cash from the Second Stewards Credit Union. But Oswald's ever-present companion, Butch stopped him.
"Seduction, my dear friend," Oswald answered him simply.
"Seduction? How is coitus interruptus seduction? That defies all logic."
"Because, you dolt, you can't just give it all away. Nothing's more alluring than rejection. The tease of something that might be there but is suddenly taken away."
"Is that so?"
"Yes. It fosters desire, fascination . . . obsession. Especially if you keep throwing someone a bone over and over again, only to take it away each time. But you, dear Riddler are so smitten with her I don't trust you to take it away yourself." Oswald grinned. "That's where I come in. I'm your own personal cock blocker."
He frowned. They had never discussed this part of the plan.
"Don't worry. She'll crack. We're going to make her admit that she loves you. Then you'll finally have her wrapped around your little finger. You'll have won."
"And then I'll lose interest." That was the plan.
"Yes," Oswald, turned away so that his face was in the shadows, unreadable. He said quietly, "Nothing kills the spark faster then telling someone you love them, eh?"
This time Oswald had left them a little treat. While he and Lee had been working a different part of the bank, he had found a stash of bills, removed them from their bindings and sprinkled them upon a large table like rose petals. It was the perfect setting for a seduction.
He smiled wickedly at her when they came upon it. "Shall we?"
"Indeed, we shall," Lee said, taking his hand.
He could tell that she was close to giving in. As his finger drew down her neck to her collarbone he knew she loved him. He had no doubt. Just like she had known his true feelings all along. But what was it going to take to make her admit it and end this terrible hold she had over him?
He slowly peeled off her clothes, his lips trailing kisses in their wake. She reverently removed his in silence. Once they were both naked and lying on that pile of money - before they had connected with each other - he felt a little panicked rush. He knew this was going to be the last time he'd be able to tell her that he loved her. This was it.
"Lee?" He stroked her hair, looking into her devilishly delightful, playful eyes.
"Right now, at this very moment, I love you more than I ever have before."
She sighed and raised her hand to his cheek.
He whispered almost imperceptibly, "please remember that" and then dove in for a passionate kiss.
She arched underneath him and spread her legs, wanting more. But he made her wait. Kissing her all over, playing with her, touching her with his fingers, but not with what she wanted. His cock. He worked her up into such a frenzy she was moaning and begging for it. Demanding it.
And by the time he finally gave in, she grasped him tightly by both sides of his head and cried out violently in her orgasm. And as it released her and she lay there panting underneath him, she said it.
"I love you."
He stopped and stared at her like a deer trapped in oncoming headlights, not knowing what to do, where to run . . . or if he even should.
His heart was hammering in his chest. He was elated, truly. A part of him had wanted to hear those three little words for so long . . . the part of him he and Oswald were so desperately trying to drown. But perhaps the other part of him had wanted to hear them as well . . .
The feelings coursing through him were like a drug, flooding his entire system and doping his mind. He couldn't let them overpower him. It was time to finish this. He almost sneered as he focused on sex, not emotion, bringing himself to a blinding, mind-numbing climax. Now it was his turn to lay panting in her arms.
It was time to break this.
He allowed himself one last breath, savoring the very last scent of her - of their mingled bodies together - and then pulled away from her and silently put his clothes back on. Coldly.
He heard her sit up, rustling the pile of money beneath her.
"Hey, what's wrong?"
Turning back to her, he steeled himself, lifted his chin in mock confidence, and said, "I won. I beat you."
After a tense moment, she whispered, "What?"
Alarm bells began to ring throughout the bank and she looked around in confusion. But he wasn't confused at all – he knew exactly what was going on - who would show up at any minute. The one who had been watching . . . waiting for victory.
"Sorry, Lee. He's coming with me," Oswald said triumphantly from the door.
"Oswald, don't," he said, a note of warning in his voice. Don't tease. Don't be cruel. He couldn't look at her anymore. He turned away to put on his bowler and then turned his head a bit sideways, the brim of the hat shielding his eyes from her gaze as he gave her a curt nod and said, "Lee" in parting.
Then he left her there naked. On a pile of useless money.
That was supposed to work. That was supposed to cure him of his insane fascination with her. He had finally gotten her to admit that she loved him, just as she had played him so early on. He had beaten her at her own game. Plus, he had gotten to work out some of his built up lust. That was Oswald's idea – it was why he had finally let him finish - being satiated in such a spectacular way after having been thwarted time and again was supposed to make this stick.
But he wasn't so sure anymore. He remembered her face . . . the shock, the hurt that had crept onto her features. Her knitted brow before it had all sunk in. The tears nipping at the corner of her eyes as she whispered, "What?"
He wasn't sure that this crazy plan he and Oswald had put together had worked at all. In fact, he was fairly certain that it hadn't. And now he felt nothing but regret. And pain.
He sank down into the seat, pulling his bowler hat down over his face so Oswald couldn't see. He could still smell her alluring scent all over his clothes. He worked hard to breathe steadily and just let the tears fall silently so that his companion wouldn't know that he was crying.
But soon he felt Oswald's cool fingers take his hand into his own. "There, there, friend. It's all for the best. You'll see."
He sank even deeper into the seat. Somehow, despite his best efforts, Oswald had figured out that he was shedding tears for the one he had so brutally pushed away. With his help. The one he still loved.
Oswald knew he was crying for Lee.
And he was mortified.