Story: The Joke\'s on You (chapter 2)

Authors: Blood_Covered_Pheonix

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Chapter 2

Title: Call me a softie

[Author's notes:

This took forever to polish, not sure if I'm happy with the end result. A little note I'd like to make here is that this strays into the relm of the comics more than the animated series.


Poison Ivy was busy carefully watering and trimming her exotic plants when the monitor hooked up to the motion sensor at her front popped on. She set aside her clippers and glanced up at the screen. Harley Quinn stood in the view of the camera, bruised and beaten. Ivy frowned and pushed the button to unlatch the door and activate the speaker above it. “Come in, Harley dear.”

The jester grinned at her before limping through the door. Pamela Isley removed her spectacles and left them on the desk as she stood and strode out of the greenhouse portion of her hideout. She paused at the heavy steel door that secured the foyer from her precious plants. The red head punched a twenty three digit code into the zero to nine pad on the wall. The pad chirped cheerily as the steel slab slid to the side with a soft hiss. Beyond the door, her foyer waited. When she’d moved in, she’d built the small room out of sturdy steel and placed only a small couch and coffee table in it, a staircase stood behind the couch that lead to her bedroom and bathroom. Across from the vault door was her heavy security door with only an electronic latch to prevent break-ins, and along the adjacent wall was an open doorway that led to her kitchen.

Harley lounged on the couch, obviously in pain by the grimace that twisted her face. The image on the monitor had not been clear, but it was clear that her friend was in rough shape. Ivy steeled herself as she approached. The jester was out of costume, dressed in the tattered remains of a thin blue t-shirt and a pair of jean short-shorts with her face unpainted and blonde hair uncovered. Pamela felt her stomach clench into angry knots at the sight of Harley’s numerous wounds; it seemed that there was more blood on Harley than in her. She took a deep breath and cleared the anger from her mind so she could begin to catalogue the other woman’s injuries. She started at her head, finding that her left cheek was purple and bulging and her right was three times the size of the left one, swelling shut her right eye as well. Her lips were split and bloody, leaving trails at the corners of her mouth and down her chin.  There was a bloodied scabby mess at the base of her neck that looked like a bite mark. Her left arm was friction burnt from her pinkie, which was skinned almost to the snapped bone, to her armpit. This left whole chunks of her soft tissue either hanging raggedly from her muscle and bone or missing completely from her body. The pattern continued down her whole left side to her ankle, leaving her shirt ripped on that side completely and fraying her jeans as well. The brush burn had managed to bleed horrendously across her body, soaking her shirt and shorts. Her right arm was lacerated from her shoulder to her elbow, with small stones and pieces of sharp trash like aluminum and glass sticking out of it, as though she had fallen from a great height onto the street. Both of her hands were swollen and at least three of her fingers looked broken and the rest were at least skinned or cut badly. Her right thigh had a huge gash cut into it, one that had run blood down that leg.

The blonde noticed her hovering and offered her a tragic smile. “Hey Red, sorry I didn’t call ahead.” The jester bounced off the couch with a soft whimper. “Mista J tossed me out. You mind if I crash here tonight?”

Ivy leaned in and touched the tip of her nose to Harley’s forehead. “Of course you can stay the night. Let’s get you upstairs.” She released the girl and gestured to the staircase. The blonde bounded up the stairs with her usual exuberance, much too quickly for Ivy’s liking, she was after all in the worse shape that the red head had seen in her yet. Poison Ivy followed her up the stairs to her bedroom. “Do you want to shower?” She asked gently. Harley closed her good eye and thought before nodding slightly.

“Yeah, that sounds wonderful. Just no soap, okay?” She replied. Ivy smiled and began tugging the elastic bands that barely held Harley’s messy pigtails out of her tresses. Her friend leaned into her touch and allowed her to carefully smooth her hair down to fall messily to her neck.

“Do you need help undressing dear?” She asked lowly, carefully placing her arms around the tops of the jester’s shoulders. Harley glanced up at her and caught her eye. She saw the blonde’s mouth twitch into a slight frown for a brief second before it relapsed back into her smile.

“I can manage; you go and get the medicine kit.” She chirped. Pamela nodded and carefully pulled away from Harley. She crossed the room to the adjacent corner to the trunk that she used for storage. She took her time sorting through the contents while Harley struggled with her clothes. Finally she heard the blonde flop down on the bed with an exaggerated grunt. The red head seized the brown suitcase that contained her medical supplies and closed the trunk.

Poison Ivy turned back to face her bed and returned to Harley’s side. She carefully set up the suitcase on her bedside table before allowing her eyes to fall on Harley’s naked form. “I’m going to check to make sure none of your bones are broken before the shower, alright? Sit up for me.”

The blonde happily complied. Ivy began tapping her toes, running her hands up the jester’s feet. The plant woman frowned as she felt a small fractured bone in the top of the jester’s right foot. The girl’s legs were bruised and scraped up, but Ivy found no fractures. Bruises colored her inner thighs, fresh like her other injuries. “What happened?” She asked probing Harley’s bruised abdomen for internal bleeding.

“I screwed up again, got Mista J locked up for a few weeks. He got home tonight. I apologized and we went to bed. Things were going good, but I uh-“She sucked in a breath as Ivy tapped a sore rib. “I finished early, and he got mad. It’s my fault; really, he just stormed up to the roof. I followed him there. He wasn’t happy about that. He threw me off.” She finished with a soft grunt as Ivy ghosted over the rest of her ribs and found a broken one. The red head nodded and carefully added Harley’s new set of injuries to her list of pains to inflict on the Joker should he give her the chance.

The blonde allowed her to finish checking her shoulders, arms, and hands with-out much of fight. Though she squirmed considerably when she started poking the bleeding rash on her left arm, she never pulled away.  Her arms were a bloody mess but miraculously neither had a fracture or break. Her hands, however, were a different story. The pinkie and ring fingers of her left hand were skinned and broken; the fine bones that made up her wrist were shattered. Her right had a large piece of glass sticking out of the palm and her ring finger looked broken. Pamela spent a few extra minutes kneeling in front of Harley with a pair of tweezers, picking the glass and stones out of her right leg and hand. Her face was fine, though she protested loudly when Ivy began checking her jaw and cheek bones. “I’ll go turn on the water.” Ivy informed her as she rose from her knees and padded to the bathroom.

She crossed to the bathtub and turned the faucet for hot water and flicked the switch down for the shower. The water rushed, streaming out of the shower head. Harley limped into the room behind her and wrapped her arms around Ivy. The red head felt her friend’s lips settle on her collar bone. “Harley!” She warned.

“I know Red.” The jester breathed into her ear, giving the rounded tip a playful nip. “Mista J’s, the only one that’d rev me up looking like this.” She brushed past the other woman and stepped into the shower. “You want to jump in with me?” She offered.

“I’ll undress.” Ivy replied curtly. Harley nodded and stepped into the warm spray of the water. The heat and gentle touch of the water soothed her aches, washing away the dirt and blood from her wounds. She almost didn’t mind the stinging as it tapped against her wounds. She allowed herself to relax, let her arms fall to her sides and raised her face to the stream of the water. The dull ache of the water falling on her badly bruised face hardly registered as the water brought a calming cleansing warmth to the damaged area.

Harley stiffened slightly as Ivy slipped in behind her. She could her friend’s gaze crawling up her back. The soft gasp was enough for her to guess the woman’s reaction, revulsion. “Oh, Harley.” She murmured. “My poor dear, why?” She intoned dramatically.

Internally, Ivy was fuming but anger would not help her here. Harley’s back was a mess of blood and scabs. “They’re just scratches, Red. I liked that part.” Harley offered. Pamela found herself disagreeing with the statement silently. Her back was not simply scratched; rather deep furrows of her flesh had been torn away, leaving blood wells down to the girl’s flank. Worse was the number, not only had the Joker man’s eight fingers dug into her, but also the thumbs, leaving ten horrific trenches from her shoulder blades to her lower back. She longed to make him pay, to cut apart his flesh and watch his blood flow and bones crack as he had done to Harley so many times. Ivy shook her head and closed her eyes. Losing control, even of her thoughts, was unbecoming and she refused to let that deplorable man cause it to happen.

The blonde turned to her, drawing a quick breath as the water hit her injured back. “It’s not so bad, Red. I don’t mind.” She whispered. “I deserve it anyway. I always screw something up. Anyone would get tired of it. I know he ain’t perfect but Mista J loves me. He’s the only guy for me, he makes me laugh.” Ivy entwined her fingers in Harley’s long beautiful hair. The jester rested her head on the plant woman’s chest, in return Ivy dropped her forehead onto the girl’s temple and snaked her arms around her shoulders. They held each other until the water ran ice cold.

It was only while carefully drying Harley that Pamela trusted herself to begin talking again. “You don’t deserve it, Harley.” The blonde sighed, they’d been down this road before countless times. “You don’t screw up either. We’ve pulled off dozens of heists together. The clown just blames you for everything, you’re his scapegoat.” She wanted to tell her friend that the Joker didn’t love her, but even she knew that it wasn’t true. The psychopath did have some strange affection for his former psychiatrist, but it was that Harley would never the damned fool. A part of her accepted that, but every other part sought to break them up, to make Harley see reason.

The blonde soaked up her words as she carefully dried and brushed her hair. They returned to the bed, where Ivy began patching Harley’s myriad wounds. As usual, the jester whine and fussed as she sprayed the sterilizing agent into her cuts, huffed as she bandaged her scrapes, and pouted as she painstakingly reset her fingers and wrapped them. After cleaning the deep furrows on her back, Ivy resolved to let them air. They were after all only scratches. By the time she finished Harley’s left arms was completely bandaged, her right was white from the elbow down. Both hands were completely wrapped, as were her ribs and right thigh. She’d dealt with the mess on her neck by slapping a large bandage over it.

They lay together on the bed in a tense silence before Harley reiterated her usual reply. She lifted her head from Ivy’s breast. “He loves me, Red. He needs me and I need him. Without me, he’d be lost and heartbroken. I love him, I understand him in a way no one else does. I’ve seen things, done things that no one else has. I know you don’t understand, I don’t think anyone could but me and him.” Ivy’s mouth twitched back into her customary frown reserved for all things Joker. She understood well enough that the two shared some bond between the mentally ill, but that was irrelevant. No person deserved the treatment Harley got from the clown and no healthy relationship involved this many bruises or trips off of high surfaces.

The plant sympathizer carefully brushed Harley’s golden hair out of her big blue eye as her mind worked furiously. She debated dropping the the bombshell that she’d been biting back since nearly the beginning of their friendship. Finally a look of resignation darkened her eyes, but her frown sloped up to a tight line. “I love you too, Harley.” She admitted.

The jester let another sad smile find her face. “I know, Red. I’d have to be blind not to notice.” Pamela frowned once against and propped herself up on one elbow. Harley rose with her, her body directly on top of Ivy’s. She scooted up to rest her hands above her friend’s breasts and her chin upon her hands. Their eyes met, both sad for a few agonizing moments before Harley made her own admission. “I love you too, Red.”

Poison Ivy felt incredulity rise inside her, but she couldn’t doubt the honesty in her eyes. “You can’t love two people.” She replied icily. Harley looked crest fallen.

“Yes you can, because I do. I love you and Mista J. You and me, Red, we got a bond like sometimes I can just feel what you’re feeling and it’s like you just know what I need.” She declared. Ivy let herself drop down again. She cast her eyes down to Harley, who was smiling at her again.


The jester raised herself off of Ivy and slid upward once again. One of her hands came to rest above her friend’s head and the other alighted on her cheek. Pamela guessed the blonde’s intention well enough but found that she wanted the kiss just as much as Harley. She knew that the venom in her lips was deadly and that no antidote existed. Still those bruised and cracked lips inched closer. Harley’s good eye closed in anticipation. Ivy tilted her head into the expected kiss. She felt Harley’s breath on her lips and in that moment realized what was transpiring.


On pure instinct she brought her hands up to shove Harley to the side, and off of the bed. The Jester whimpered as she hit the ground but didn’t complain. Ivy leaned over the side of the bed. “I’m sorry Harley, but I couldn’t have done much else. You would have-“

She was cut off by Harley’s expression as she looked up. Disappointment had crumped her whole body, she slouched back, and her head low above her chest. Her face though, made the whole scene much more depressing. Tears leaked from under the puffy eyelid of her swollen eyes while her left eyes held a steely blue sadness, her mouth folded down into an ugly frown. Sobs were beginning to rock the blonde’s body. “I know!” She wailed. “I know I would have died.” Harley sniffled. She quieted quickly and continued in an even tone. “I just figured that because you love me, it wouldn’t affect me.  Stupid, huh?” She gingerly rubbed her drying tear tracks.

          Pamela stood from the bed and fell to her knees in front of Harley. “It’s not exactly well reasoned, but you’re not stupid, dear.” She crooned, scooping Harley into her lap. The jester brought her head to rest on Ivy’s shoulder. The other woman stood holding her friend and placed Harley on the edge of the bed. She paused as an idea struck her. “I might though be able to make you immune.” She mused, the jester put a finger under Ivy’s chin and tilted her face upward so their eyes could meet.

          “What are ya thinkin’?” Harley questioned a small amount of light returning to her eye.

          “I’m immune to poisons and toxins through my DNA, but I could use some of my blood, mixed with some venom as a sort of vaccine. I could potentially make you immune to my kiss!” She clasped Harley’s wrists in her hand. “If you’re willing to try.”

          The blonde brought Ivy’s hands to her mouth and placed a chaste kiss on both. “Of course, I wanna try!” She grinned. “How long will it take?” Pamela bit her lip before replying.

          “I’ll start working on it right now; you go ahead and take a nap.” She suggested as she stood and went to her closet to don another set of clothes. Harley simply nodded and crawled farther onto the bed before closing her eyes. Ivy paused to cover Harley before stumbling down the stairs and striding to her lab.

          “This time…” She mumbled absently as she paced her lab, inspecting all of her venomous plants and a few of her special herbs. “This time things will be different.” She finished with determination. A plan was forming in her head; this would be more than a vaccine. It would make Harley stronger; she would fight back against that damn clown’s fists. “This time, the jokes on you, you dirty clown.” She growled as she picked up her glasses and clippers and set to work.


          Hours later, Poison Ivy returned to her bedroom weary from her work. The bright late morning sun shone cheerily onto her empty bed. Pamela glanced back at it with a disgruntled sigh. Empty, indeed. She kicked off her flats and collapsed wearily onto the soft mattress. It was still warm surprising. She couldn’t call Harley’s disappearance a surprise, not after all of the similar nights before it.

          She closed her eyes and blocked her weak human emotions until she felt her mind sliding into nothingness. She felt the bed dip next to her, and jumped up instantly ready to fight. She blinked to unblur her vision and adjust her eyes to the glare of the morning sun. She could make out the distinct shape and colors of Harley’s costume. “Didn’t mean to wake ya, Red. Just thought I’d bring ya breakfast while you were working.” The jester chirped as she eased through the window carefully. “Ya didn’t answer when I came around front, so I figured the window would work.” She flopped down on the bed. “I stopped by the warehouse to pick up some clothes; the ones I wore here are dirty.” She held out a paper bag to Ivy.

          Ivy accepted it and sat next to her, reaching in to pull out a fast food omelet. “You do know that I eat sunlight.” She emphasized, grimacing at the greasy yellow blob.

          “Yeah, you eat food with me all the time, though.” Harley retorted. “And I’ve seen you eat eggs.”

          “Okay, Harley. I’ll eat your attempt at kindness. Just to please you.” Pamela relented. “But our first kiss better be magical.”

          “Oh, it will be. Red, trust me!” Harley exclaimed with all of her usual exuberance, and Ivy found it easier to believe with her bruises hidden under cloth and makeup.

[End notes: So ends my tale, Rate and Review]

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