Chapter 3, up and running! SORRY it's a bit short. I know, I know! I'm sad about it too. But I think I got the information I wanted to cover into this pretty well.

I don't own Batman, or any of the characters IN Batman. Just so we all know.

This is Heath Ledger's Joker and Christian Bale's Batman. Because I love them both... a lot. D:

It was unbelievable to think that the Joker had been in the hospital for a whole week without escaping. Was he even trying? Or was he just playing with everyone, teasing them?

Batman knew the other would probably try and run off sooner or later. But he was healing pretty well- he had gone to check that the murderer was still strapped to that bed every day, much to the clown's excitement. He enjoyed the other's company.

It was the last day the Joker would be staying in the hospital before being transported to Arkham. Bruce walked in, fully expecting the bed to be devoid of any madman and the room ransacked- no such luck. The Joker was still there- still strapped down, waiting.

"Oh, good! You're here!" The other said brightly, his scarred smile twisting into a large smirk. "I was hoping you'd come to say goodbye before I went off to Arkham!"

"And stay there?" Batman asked, standing in the corner of the room and crossing his arms against his broad chest. He wasn't convinced. This clown had escaped many times from even worse predicaments.

"Ah! Bats, I'm shocked!" Joker grinned, leaning back comfortably. "I've not been able to so much as cough without someone watching me in here. Arkham will be a VERY nice change." He said this with a faraway look in his eyes before he shrugged at the superhero in front of him. "But it sure is nice when you come and visit me. I don't get visitors, usually!"

Bruce rolled his eyes, sitting down on a stool. "I wonder why." He said in his deep, masked voice. The other man across from him laughed.

"I think I heard the Commissioner!" He glanced over at the door as Gordon walked in with a few police officers.

"I talked to the doctor. He says you're ready to leave. Back to Arkham, then!" Jim glanced back at Batman with a nod before his men started pulling the straps from the lean man's torso. One of the policemen got the handcuffs on Joker's wrists easily, looking surprised. The Joker usually put up more of a fight.

Batman watched from the sidelines, more than a bit alarmed. Was the other sick or something?

The Joker let the men pull him away from the bed. He pulled his long legs, only in a pair of pants from the hospital ward and his hospital gown, over the side of the mattress and stood, cracking his neck and then grinning over at Batman, eyes dark.

"…Well. Batman, I think we're all set here." Gordon said with an equally shocked expression. Bruce simply nodded, letting the others lead the Joker off down the hall to the police car. So, it was easier than it looked…

Bruce had just sat down, starting to pull off his mask when he saw the Batman symbol in the air, shining into the clouds. Hadn't he just SEEN Gordon? He had been taking the Joker to…


He grabbed his mask, pulling it back on. Alfred walked by with a frown. "Master Wayne, will you be home late?"

"Yeah, Alfred… probably very late." He glanced at the other with a wave and sighed, rushing off. His butler nodded, going off to call off the dinner he had been making.

"Commissioner?" Batman stood behind the man on the roof, crossing his arms against his broad chest. Gordon turned around, breathing out. His lip looked caked over in blood, a cut on his mouth.

"He escaped, Batman." Gordon said angrily, hands clenched into fists. The police officer wasn't usually so angry. He took it calmly. But it was one thing or another with the Joker. It was getting old, fast. "He had a knife… I don't even know where he keeps these things. It popped out of… who knows where. He took out two police guards and ran for it. I couldn't catch him."

"…Which way did he go?" Batman asked in a dark voice. Was this what the scary look the villain had given him before was hinting at? That he would escape just as soon as he could? If he had a knife, why didn't he cut himself out of the bed?

"We were driving to Arkham. He took the police car. He could be anywhere." Gordon looked out of breath. He had probably run all the way across town to the building to get his help.

Bruce nodded. "Get some more policemen to look after you and everyone else. Get a ride on the bus." He said, not wanting the man to run all the way back and forth. "…I'll find him." He was gone in a flash.

The earsplitting sound of sirens buzzed through Batman's head. The problem was that Gordon would be sending his men out in cop cars. Which meant he couldn't tell which was which. He watched each one, following one after another, checking the inhabitants from a safe distance.

Each car had two cops in them. He had no idea where the Joker had possibly gone. He looked throughout the town, eyes searching.
After what seemed like forever, Batman spotted a police car parked on the side of the road. He hopped down to it… but no one was there. The car was completely empty. But a pair of handcuffs was lying on the front seat, and the car keys were taken out. There was a quite long scratch in the leather of the passenger seat, however...and blood. Blood stunk in the car's small body.

He pulled himself away, listening closely. What was that sound…? It was like feet dragging. He steered himself far from the car and looked at the small bit of forest, sitting next to an old apartment building. He sped up until he came to a giant clearing in the darkening forest.

"…Joker." Batman growled out, staring at the crazed madman, who was currently holding a dead policeman by the collar, dragging his body across the large circular clearing. The clown turned around and a wicked smile graced his scarred lips.

"Bats! So soon, too! I didn't have time to prepare!"

"What're you doing, Joker?" Batman asked, walking closer without stopping. The clown's hands dropped the dead man on the floor and came up defensively.

"Self defense! I wanted to get out, Bats! Can't you understand that?" He asked, shuffling back when the other got closer. His back pressed against a tree and he watched as the masked hero came closer. His dark eyes sparked deliciously and he fumbled around for his knife. He had no pockets in these hospital gown things… he must have dropped it.

Batman grabbed his arms so he couldn't attack, pressing them over the other's head.

"Oi, Bats! C'mon, you wouldn't want to be cooped up in Arkham either, right?"

"I'm not a criminal, and a madman."

"Madman?" The Joker looked crushed, but regained his sense of superiority quickly. "I'm not a madman. You should know that. You know how smart I am." He winked, watching the other roll his eyes.

"I'm taking you to Arkham. And you're going to STAY in Arkham… until we can decide what to do with you." Batman glanced at the other, who was grinning. "…What?" He asked angrily.

"I think it's funny, that's all! Really funny!" He writhed in the grip the other had on his wrists, his chest brushing up against the other before his back arched back against the tree. "You gonna take me in, Bats?" He asked, eyes half lidded. There was something strange in the look he was giving. Batman glared.

"Yes, I'm taking you in."

"Can I get a goodbye kiss?" The Joker asked with a pouty expression, though the long scars on his face didn't show off the frown too well. The hero above him stared at the clown, appalled.

"What-!? No-"

The Joker pushed his body off the tree with one mighty shove to connect his lips with the other's. He grinned against the other's mouth, closing his eyes and waiting. The hero seemed still as a statue, not able to do anything.

So revolted, and yet at the same time… confused.

The Joker pulled back, watching the other. "You can take me in at any time, Batsy." He said with a sly smile, looking as if he had gotten what he wanted.

Bruce pulled out from his sudden daydream, glaring down at the other and letting go of one of his wrists, only to grab the other and pull his arm against his back to keep him there. He watched the other gasp and laugh through a tiny bit of pain.

"You're not going to escape from Arkham this time." Batman said in his low voice against the others ear. The Joker seemed to shiver a bit, trying to pull out of the grip.

"I can certainly try, right?" The clown winked at the other and let him lead him off, back to Arkham.

Aaaand that's all, folks! Next chapter is coming in a few days. I have to update some other things, though. So we'll see! Thanks for reading and all that!