"The Crown."

By B.B. Asmodeus.

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Fandom: Gotham (2014).

Couples: Jim Gordon/Bruce Wayne (main). Mentions of Bruce/Selina, Bruce/Others, Jim/Sofia, and Jim/Lee.

Rating: Adult overall. Bruce is seventeen in the beginning of this story.

Summary: Post-4x11. After being played big time by Sofia Falcone, Jim looks for a way to regain control of the city. And it involves contracting nuptials of convenience with Bruce Wayne.

Continuity: Alternate Universe of seasons 2-4-5. You will know how, if you keep reading.

Extra: The series "The Crown" is responsible for inspiring me to write an AU with Jim and Bruce married, and the Waynes being part of Gotham royalty. Therefore, the title of this fic. However, don't expect many similarities between the series. Also, I'm Mexican and my first language is spanish, any mistakes in this translation are my own.

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"I'm holding out for a hero,

until the end of the night."

-Bonnie Taylor.

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The precinct was involved in the typical Monday uproar. Gordon didn't blink an eyelash as he made his entrance. He carried on with a cup of coffee on one hand, and his raincoat hanging from him arm, the mission in his mind being his office.

He passed the cells, on the way to the stairs.

He paused on the third step and slowly backed up.

What he saw made Jim choke on the coffee he had just sipped.


Inside the cell, the boy in question was lying on the side bench, his head in the lap of one of the girls also locked up, letting her play with his strands of hair. "Good morning Captain Gordon."

Jim pulled at the first officer he saw passing by. "Get him out of there, now." He practically pushed Castro up to the cell door, scaring the crap out of the man. "And you一Don't say another word. Go straight to my office."

Bruce had the nerve to laugh. When he walked out of the cell, and not even the ridiculous sunglasses stopped the boy's grimace at the sudden light.

"Hey, what about us?" The girl complained on the other side of the bars, looking bored. She wasn't the only one gracing the GCPD presence, it seemed to be almost the whole entourage Bruce surrendered himself these days.

Jim looked at group of rich children still half drunk with pity, and turned to Castro for an explanation on the charges.

"They run over a hot dogs stand on 14th Street." Castro squeaked.

A hot dogs stand. Jim groaned. It was too early for this shit. "Contact their parents."

A series of groans came from the Breakfast Club. Jim didn't give a rat ass.

Out of pure delight, Jim closed the door of his office as loud as possible.

Bruce covered his ears, muttering curses from his seat on the small guest couch. Jim hung up his raincoat, and lowered his coffee on the desk. He pulled out a strip of aspirins from the left drawer and threw it straight to the boy's hands.

"What do you think you're doing?"

There was glitter on Bruce's neck. Glitter. How? Why? "At the moment, just being still, while you start lecturing me, sounds like a good plan."

-Oh, you bet. "You're going to pay down to the last penny in the repairs of the hot dogs stand you wrecked. Not only that, you'll also pay the bails of each of your friends out there. Maybe then you'll think twice the next time you want to end up in one of my cells."

Bruce kept his promise. He remained quiet and still, reclining on the sofa as if he were sunbathing on the beach. "What makes you think it was my car that rolled over Mr. Monroy's stand?"

Thanks to Harper's report of the arrest waiting on his desk, Jim had the answer. He sighed with the first photograph of the dented Ferrari. "Your plates."

"Oops." Bruce adjusted his sunglasses. Jim saw a slight tremor going through his frame.

Jim sighed. He walked all the way back to the hanger to pick up his raincoat.

He offered it to the Omega, knowing that the boy must be feeling cold with the thin black shirt he was wearing. The precinct wasn't known for having the best heating. Bruce hesitated at first. Then he stretched out his hand to accept the offering.

"Thank you."

"Sleep it off. Believe it or not, I have better things to do than be your babysitter, Bruce." Not waiting for an answer, Jim left the office, suddenly unable to continue seeing the Omega in such a decadent state.

He ended up walking around the second floor to release some of his anger and frustration.

Why did this change in Bruce affected him so much? Jim knew damn well that he was the last person to judge someone for losing his way. Not when Jim had just come out of his own personal Hell after being infected by the virus. He should be able to feel more empathy for the situation.

But it was difficult.

Bruce had been this perfect little person, forever in a pedestal in Jim's eyes. This fall from grace was painful to watch. If felt like a failure from Gordon's part.

Nothing new, then. Considering the number of times he had already failed Bruce in the past. When it had really mattered.

Jim sighed.

Returning to his office, he felt more calm. Cautious.

Bruce was curled up on the couch, completely covered by the Captain's raincoat. He had removed his boots to lay down more conformable. He looked like an angry, disheveled and defensive cat, even in his sleep.

Jim settled down in Harvey's chair, again.

Twenty minutes passed. Just as he was finishing his coffee Fox came to knock on his door and invite himself in. He glanced at Bruce's way instantly, shook his head, and proceeded to walk out again.

Jim sighed, sympathetic by the desillusion on the man's face.

He humored himself with more work. He reviewed five reports of newly resolved cases, granting his signature on each of them.

Bruce woke in the middle of a crime scene examination report, and he did it with a jump. He looked green.

Jim moved his trash can just in time for the boy to vomit his insides. It wasn't a pretty sight.

Jim opened the office door to ask Ramírez for a bottle of water, getting worried when Bruce's groans sounded rather painful. "That doesn't sound like a normal hangover. You all right?"

Bruce accepted the bottle. He rinsed his mouth, spitting more saliva into the basket. The sunglasses had fallen to the ground. Jim picked them back up.

"What did you take?" He insisted, voice low and soft with concern. What else was Bruce using other than alcohol?

"I'm fine." The Omega pressed the bottle against his forehead. "Turns out I miscalculated, I'll be fine once I take my medication."

Shit. "Are you about to go into your cycle? Damn it, Bruce."

"Pre-Cycle symptoms, Captain. No reason to panic, I'll be able to restrain myself and not take advantage of your virtue." His immense sweating was showing otherwise. "God, I don't remember where I left my jacket. My keys..."

"Hey, easy." Jim intercepted the boy while he tried to get up from the couch. He was careful not to make skin-to- skin contact. "I'll get Lucius, okay? Stay right there."

Lucius was a monument of disappointment when he came back to the office. He gave the Omega a quick check up, intent on being his usual professional self for the first fifteen minutes.

Then just like Jim, he cracked. "No one better than you, knows the consequences of going out to parties under these circumstances, Bruce."

"I know how to take care of myself."

Except, not so much. Because Fox was the one holding up of a strip of suppressive tablets, and not Bruce.

Petulant, Wayne took his recommended dose.

Ramirez knocked on the door. He had Bruce's coat in his hands. Jim took it, grateful. "Get up, I'll take you home."

Bruce must have felt really bad一to not offer any objections. When leaving the office, Jim tried to block curious eye from him, guarding his back. Fortunately, Bruce's cycle was just beginning, and his pheromones weren't creating havoc yet.

Jim got on the wheel and pulled out from the GCPD in record time.

Bruce chose to look out the window, instead of initiating any kind of conversation.

Jim cleared his throat. "You know you can always count on me for anything."

"Of course, that's why you'll force me to pay other people's bail even though I wasn't the one driving. Garry was the idiot who made the wrong turn so he wouldn't pass over a cat in the middle of the street."

Jim smiled. "Better that, than leaving you in the cells for the rest of the day."

Bruce finally turned to face him. He looked remarkably less green. "Is that the right way to talk to someone you tried to propose a few days ago? Then you wonder why I didn't accept it."

Jim's chest burned with the memory. That rejection had to easily be one of the worst humiliations he had ever experienced. He remained silent, unwilling to get dragged into a worse argument.

It surprised him, then, to hear Bruce sigh.

"That wasn't fair. I apologize."


There it was.

A hint of the boy Jim remembered. "Nah. I deserve it, I should have bothered with some flowers, at least."

He turned to the Omega. He found one Bruce's light smiles reflecting from the window.

When they arrived at the Mansion, it was natural for Jim to walk Bruce up to the lobby. "Are you sure you don't want me to一?"

Bruce stopped him cold, slapping the borrowed trench coat straight on Jim's chest. "I'll let you go back to work, Detective. I'll be sending a check to pay for all the damages to Mr. Monroe's place of business, and to assurance my friends release before the end of the day."

Before the young man released the coat completely, Jim encircled Bruce's wrist, over the long-sleeved silk shirt. "Bruce. Call me, or Lucius, if you need anything. I mean it."

Bruce nodded, his face returning to an indecipherable mask. Jim released his wrist一

一This time, Bruce was the one who pulled at his forearm, taking him by surprise. In a blink, Jim found himself pressed against the wall of the lobby.


Bruce… had gotten strong, over the course of the last two years.

Jim raised his chin, entering a defensive state automatically. Gone were the days when he would be one towering over Wayne. Now, they were almost equals.

Bruce's inspection of Jim's face lasted about six seconds. He concluded with an inhalation, his eyelids falling briefly.

"As you can see, I'm capable of taking care of myself." Upon reopening, the Omega's pupils glowed. "But I understand your concern."

The boy stepped back, enigma weaving into his smile.

"We'll be in contact, Captain Gordon."

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Little had Jim know, that Bruce's last comment would soon become a self-fulfilled prophecy of events to come.

A week later, Jim was questioning the manager of a stripclub for some clue to the underground Fight Club running in the area, when a glint of glittered skin blinded him from the corner of his eye.


Accompanied by his usual entourage, the Omega was in one of the booths of the establishment, watching an incredibly flexiblemaledancer do his magic on the pole.

Jim's first impulse consisted in walking up to Bruce's table and demand what the hell he was doing in a place like this. He was about to do it, his feet started moving in their directionBut in a moment of dexterity, Bruce tilted his face in Jim's way. Their eyes met.

Jim got the message.

Don't meddle in my affairs, Captain.

Two days later, Jim found himself signing the report of another crash led by Wayne's Ferrari, this time for avoiding running over an old woman. This time with no hot dogs stands harmed in the process.

The next weekend, just as Jim was enjoying a beer after work, Bruce was right thereat Jim's favorite barwalking in with a brown haired girl, both giggling like idiots.

Not managing to finish his bottle of beer in peace, Jim was forced to slide out of the place using the back door, unwilling to witness more of the boy's spectacles.

Here was the thing.

Jim was no fool.

Bruce was obviously trying to get his attention.

And Jim had a few ideas about why. It ranged from boredom to lonelinessprobably now that Alfred was out of the pictureTo Bruce trying to fuck with Jim's head, after the whole marriage clusterfuck that had gone down in flames. Wayne was obviously getting a kick out of the whole thing.

Whatever the reason, it didn't matter.

Jim didn't have time for games. And he knew the best way to handle Wayne was to ignore his clumsy attempts at human interactions. While walking the alley back to his Mustang, Jim repeated himself he wasn't a goddamn babysitter, and that Wayne would come to him when the young man felt ready to really talk to him.

He hoped.

Where the hell was Alfred, anyway?

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The breaking point came during his mandatory attendance at one of Gotham's Annual Charity Gala. An event that could end up giving funds to the GCPD if Jim survived the night without punching any politician in the face.


Jim was Jim. He began to regret attending the minute he took the first step into the ballroom. He noticed all the other guests wearing masks, a detail that Jim had overlooked for lack of real interest. He rolled his eyes.

-Just one hour. Jim insisted to himself. One hour and he would sneak out. Harper was guarding the Fort for the night, but there was always an emergency needing his presence. Jim would take anything, even a cat stuck in a freaking tree.

Taking a breath, Jim inspected his surroundings.

The ballroom was filled to the rim with Gotham's high society. Classical music played at the background. Champagne was passed over the guests by the waiters. Everyone was dressed to the nines.

-Stop stalling. Jim grimaced, hearing Bullock in his head. -Time to mingle.

One hour in, and Jim had already been intercepted by Commissioner Harkness, and later by Mayor Wilkins and his nearly-jailbait-wife, along with Gotham's Secretary of Public Education, Miss Dawes.

The list kept going.

Jim put on his best smile, nodded at the right timesjust because his people needed him to.

God, he missed Harvey.

With the course of long talks with the Commissioner and the Mayor, Jim was carried away to the center of the ballroom against his better judgment. He tried to hit the brakes a couple of times, but Wilkins's wife kept dragging him in by the arm, insisting on a chance to dance with the Captain of the GCPD. With the masks everyone wore, Jim easily felt surrounded by a bunch of vultures.

"Dear, I'm sure Gordon would like to hit the bar first. We have barely let him sip a champagne glass since he arrived." Wilkins, realizing that said champaign had actually gone straight to his young wife's head, smiled apologetic at Jim. The petite redhead giggled, but stopped clinging to Jim enough for him to get far away as possible.

He made his escape.

Unfortunately, the relief wasn't long lived.

Just as Jim could make out the bar straight to his left flank, the space between two couples dispersed over the dancefloorplacing him directly in the line of sight of the last person he wanted to see.


Jim froze.

The woman, like Gordon, had not bothered with a mask. A simple piece of black veil covered half of her face. Her lipsalways redlengthened into a tempting smile, the moment Sofia saw him. The silver dress was a masterpiece around her curves. Jim hated how a part of his libido piqued with interest, remembering how his hands had traced each one of them…


Sofia was then replaced by the body of Bruce Wayne, blocking her from his perception.

Jim blinked.


Of course Bruce would be here.

Jim raised an eyebrow. "Excuse me?"

The silhouette of Bruce's mask assimilated the face of an owl. The feathers looked real. Jim supposed he was trying to emphasize a specific point with this current fashion choice.

"Matrozca, the waltz."

Jim blinked again.

Bruce sighed.

Then Jim felt the Omega's hand taking his. "Do you want to try it? I promise not to step on your toes."

"Bruce…" Jim didn't consider himself the best of dancers. Although he had survived going to galas with Barbara, he wasn't a fan. "I don't think that's such a great idea."

"You can lead." The Omega reiterated, his fingers bringing Jim's right hand to his waist. "The key is to not look down at your feet… Just focus on me, Captain, and you'll be fine."

Jim didn't have another option but to focus on him. To be so close to Bruce was like getting sucked into a black hole. His natural aroma stung Jim's nostrils, cologne mixed with a more primitive perfume.

Their dance started as a confrontation.

Right away Jim sensed the tension in Bruce's body as they began to move. This up close, the young man wasn't able to hide behind his rebel facade that smoothly. Jim smelled his anxiety.

Tightening the union of his hands, Jim decided to take advantage of the opportunity.

Surrounding the Omega's waist, he pressed their bodies even closer than before.

Then, it was on.

"You know, there are less risky ways to get my attention."

The feathers of Bruce's mask tickled Jim's face as he brought his mouth close to the boy's ear. By rotating the young man's body in the opposite direction as they had begunBruce's back touching Jim's chestThe Alpha discovered Sofia still watching him, even while she was being asked to dance by an innocent sucker.

"Who's saying your attention is something I want?"

Jim snorted. "Bruce, if I didn't know any better, I'd already put a restraining order against you." Before giving him a chance for a smartass comeback, Bruce was turned on his axis again, back to him.

His torsos aligned together; steadier than Jim expected.

Bruce's body felt warmer.

They continued, each time at a faster pace. With elongated steps the pair took over the dancefloor. The melody itself was a trap, reflecting the predicament of their bodies. Bruce eyes were dark behind the Owl's face staring back at him. Jim felt haunted; like he had been for the last two weeks.

No matter how many times Jim wrapped Bruce in pirouettes to free himself from his gaze, the Omega never gave up, eager in his observation of every move Gordon made.

Jim forgot about Sofia.

The smooth and serene vals evolved, the rhythm getting agitated and their steps briskier, rotating along with the other couples. The violin notes climbed to a desperate shrill, dragging them to a chaotic climax.

His connection, however, was uninterrupted.

Jim's palms were sweaty. He noticed once the music stopped. Short breaths. Ears ringing. Blood pumping. Heart pounding.

As abrupt as the dance's ending, Jim noticed the looks they were getting.

The whispering.

A camera flashed nearby. The Gotham Gazette, most probably.

Bruce tightened his fingers around his. His exhausted breath blew over the Alpha's nose. "You certainly are… a man of secret talents, Jim."

Jim inhaled, all of a sudden falling into temptationBruce was so fucking closetorrential rain manifested in his nostrils. Bruce smelled like spring rain. Nothing like two years ago, when Jim had associated him with rotten candy.

A tiny sound came from Jim's throat. The Alpha in him awoke, receptive…

Bruce pulled away.

Alarm cut through their pheromones haze, and in turn, Jim let go of their hands.

By the time he refocused, Bruce was gone. Lost in the crowd.


The whispers just got worse now that Gordon was standing like a fool, getting in the way of another song and another dance.

Jim took his cue. He got the hell out, red faced for no stupid reason.

Outside, less than a meter from his car, the first sign of attack was the arm around his neck.

Gasping, Jim went into combat mode. His hands did everything in their power to break free, struggling against the muscle trying to choke him. It was in vain. He felt being dragged away from his car to the nearest alley.

He fell to the floor moments later, his neck no longer obstructed, and a strong kick against his stomach followed. Jim couldn't even scream, oxygen leaving his lungs from the shock. Four more kicks in, and Jim was fighting back as best as he could against the small space.

Through the cloud of physical pain, Jim recognized the smell.


"Don't be rude, James. Next time, invite a lady to dance. It's not like we're strangers."

Another kick. This time, Jim's hardened body had been prepared. He decided not to fight back anymore, since it seemed Sofia just wanted to teach him a lesson. The quicker the woman got the tantrum out of her system, the faster Jim could return to his apartment to lick his wounds.

"Don't touch his pretty face, Grump. It's one of Gotham's finest." Jim felt a kiss on his forehead; Sofia's love for the teatrical never disappointing. It remind him of Barbara, kissing his face bloody in another alley.

Jim hear Sofia's high heels clicking away.

Jim wanted to follow her. If his arms weren't immobilized at the moment, Jim knew he'd love to try to put them around her, wrapping one all around her throat

Moans that didn't come from Gordon began to materialize.

"What the fuck!"

"Oscar, behind you!"

Sounds of gunshots ringed around the alley. Then more struggles and swearing.

Now freed, Jim rolled over on his haunches, holding his abdomen. He searched for his own gunonly to meet the unconscious face of one of Sofia's thugs falling beside him on the concrete.

Eyes wide, Jim hurried to get up.

He aimed his gun in front of him.

Straight into Bruce's face.

"Shit." Jim moved the gun a centimeter to the left, catching another thug in the shoulder, one that had been getting off the floor to attack the Omega from behind. The guy collapsed with a howl. "Bruce, what the hell…?"

"Let's hear the lecture later, shall we?" Bruce had blood on his neck, his necktie undone but it wasn't his. Jim realized that, when Bruce put his arm around his shoulders to guide him out of the alley. "Where's your car?"

"Right around the corner."

The Omega followed his grunts, recognizing Gordon's Mustang quickly. Bruce backed him against the door as he began to rummage through Jim's coat for the keys.

"Wait… If you think I'm just going to let you ride my carDo you even have a license?" With Jim's lucky, he would end up impaled in another hot dog stand.

Rolling his eyes, Bruce took advantage of his clumsiness to extract the keys from his pocket. "What other option do you have in mind, Jim?"

Calling Harper would be the obvious alternative. Too bad Jim wasn't in his five senses to insist.

Bruce surprised him when he helped him get into the passenger seat. He was careful. Almost kind.

Then, the young man walked around the Mustang, got into the driver's side and started the car without hesitation.

Only after, when they were past Huston Street, Jim allowed himself to sigh.

The adrenaline starting to leave his system, and the pain worsened.

There were no broken ribs, at least. Jim had had enough beatings to notice the difference.

To prove a point, Bruce respected all the red lights and traffic signals. It was in said next red light, that Jim turned to the driver seat fully.

He looked at Wayne's fists, squeezing the steering wheel.

"That wasn't your fight."

Bruce gave him what Jim could call a withering look, turning his chin a millimeter in the Alpha's direction. He didn't shot back a vocal answer, passing the green light with pursed lips.

"I'm serious, when those thugs go back to their boss and tell her what happened… The last thing I want is for Sofia to put a target on your back, Bruce."

"It's a little late for that."

Jim felt ice creep down his aching spine. "What are you talking about?"

Bruce accelerated the car, affected in obvious manner by his emotions. "I'm talking about my uninvited guest the other night. It didn't leave much to the imagination of how much of a threat Sofia Falcone is already considering me."

God, no. "What did she say to you? What exactly did she want?" If the damn woman had physically harmed Bruce in any way… "And can you take your foot off the accelerator for a minute?"

"What do you think she wanted, Jim? She was interested in knowing which side I'm on. Obviously, she had suspected about you trying to propose to me to active the Wayne Dynasty. She came by the Mansion that same night."

It was Jim's turn to clench his fists. "Shit."

At this point, Bruce had made it clear that he was heading to the Mansion. A part of Jim was relieved, since the last place he had wanted to end up was the Gotham General.

"I should've never… " Jim didn't know how to finish the sentence. I should've never involved you? That hadn't stopped him before. He had been obsessed with the idea of taking down Sofia, that he hadn't allow himself to consider just how close to danger, he would put Bruce in the process. A stupid part of him had assumed that Sofia's wrath would focus on him, and him alone.

Second big mistake. Sofia took everything personal.

As soon as the Mustang was parked at the entrance to the Mansion, Jim pushed himself out of the car on his own. He didn't let Bruce touch him again all the way to the den, feeling like a disease. His bullshit was contagious enough.

"Prr! Pour me another drink!"

Jim raised an eyebrow when he heard it. The chirp came from a cage in the middle of the study.

"Prrrr, I'm going to throw up!"

"Don't ask." Bruce took a blanket to cover the talking parrot. "Sit down, I'll go for the first aid kit and look on the medicine cabinet for any of the heavy stuff Alfred kept around for the pain."

"I'm fine." Jim grunted. It was so unconvincing, that Bruce ignored him completely.

He was left alone.

Free to admit defeat in privacy, Jim moaned in pain as he fell down on the leather couch. He ended up leaning back in one of the armchairs, like a turtle unable to get back on his feet. "Damn it." He unbuttoned his white shirt, pushing the tie aside. Purple-green bruises were already forming on his abdomen.

When he came back, Bruce brought more than the first-aid kit. He poured the Alpha a glass of whiskey, before kneeling to check the man's abdomen.

This time, feeling the numbing effect of the whiskey running down his throat, Jim groaned for different reasons. He swallowed dry two pain pills. "It's just bruises, killing me wasn't what Sofia was going for." Yet. "She was just trying to get my attention."

Jim remembered the dance, then.

The natural way he had slide Bruce down the dancefloor. The intensity of the interaction they had shared.

"Tell me, Jim, in what consist your attraction to this kind of exceptional women?"

"Crazy women, you mean."

Bruce applied anti-inflammatory gel on his naked skin. Jim jumped at the contact.

"The worst thing is, I don't regret it." Jim licked his lips. "I don't regret bringing her here. Oswald's permits to commit crimes legally were a disgrace, a laughing stock. I had to do something, the city needed me to. I thought bringing Carmine back would be the best of two evils."

Bruce extracted a bandage from the kit and when he gestured towards him, Jim raised his torso, letting him pass the bandage around his lower back.

"I trusted Sofia would have the same sense of honor as her father, that's why I followed her games at first. I let her play her mind tricks on The Penguin, pretending to be her friend, and then take away his power… "

"But she had her own plans."

Jim sighed. "I had no one else to trust, Bruce."

It was the first time Jim admitted it out loud.

It sounded like an excuse. It didn't stop being true. Jim had been desperate for an ally, since Harvey had yielded to Cobblepot so fast and easy. Since that walk on the beach in Miami, Sofia had effectively filled that void. Sofia had known exactly how to seduce him, first with beautiful words, then with her passionate personality.

Sofia had been the first person to forgive him for Mario's death, something Lee would never do.

"All right. I may understand your motivations of bringing her here… What's stopping for arresting her for her crimes, right now? There's something holding you back."

So young, and yet so smart.

Jim's first instinct was to keep his mouth shut.

Then, the most tired part of Jim Gordon, just… gave up.

He told Bruce about Professor Pyg. Something that caused him excruciating guilt, every day.

After completing the task of patching Jim up and listening to his sad story, Bruce remained kneeling on the floor, both hands resting on the cushions. The knuckles on his right hand were swollen.

Jim cleared his throat. "You should put it on ice."

Bruce's trance was broken. He looked down at his knuckles and then at Jim. He nodded. Then he got off the floor, and quietly left the den to return the kit to its rightful place, apparently, processing what Jim had shared.

Alone for a second time, Jim's eyelids got heavier. He felt the pain-killers kicking in. He removed his shoes with clumsiness, and tried to lay down in a comfortable position.

Exhausted, it wasn't long before Jim was fast sleep.

When he woke up, it was near dawn. Past four in the morning.

Jim got up as quietly possible, noticing Bruce's silhouette sleeping on the opposite couch. He put on his shoes and retrieved his car keys from the table. Before leaving, he paused in front of Bruce, seeing the flames of the fireplace flickering over his pale features.

Jim didn't stop himself this time. He stretched out his hand, his fingers stroking Bruce's strands of hair on the top of his head. It was a light touch, an instant.

Really, he should be grateful, knowing that Bruce was still the same person deep down. It certainly should feel like a victory, knowing Bruce still cared about an old dog like Jim Gordon.

But Jim didn't feel any of those. Instead, the usual guilt was his ubiquitous companion. Gulit for involving Bruce in a war against the Mafia, only for his own interests.

It was time for Jim to learn how to clean up his own shit.

"Ask me again."

Jim's fingers froze, mid air.

Awake, Bruce uncovered his chest from the blanket, sitting up in one swift motion. He did not look as disoriented as he should be, so Jim suspected that Wayne had been faking to be sleep, or it hadn't been that long since Bruce had laid down.

When he focused on the Alpha, his eyes were clear. Sharp.

Jim swallowed hard. He hated how the flames enhanced Bruce's facial features. He hated how tight was the leash of physical attraction between them. Pulling Jim fucking in, in, in, in一

"Ask you what, Bruce?"

In bare feet, the young man got up, dressed in sports pants and black T-shirt. He walked to Jim with a smile.

"Ask me again… to marry you."

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End of Part ii.

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Extra note: About the waltz, I was inspired by the dance scene of Anna Karenina (2012 version). It's beautiful, and perfectly chaotic for these two. Of ocurse, Jim's two left feet won't let him reach that level of choreography, but my baby tried!