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The Four Seasons - Autumn : Part 3 - A Touch of the Dramatic
indochinee
indochinee
The Four Seasons - Autumn : Part 3
Thanks for the feedback so far. :D I'm so glad people like this fic. <3

Title
:  The Four Seasons - Autumn : Part 3

Summary : Kind of AU. Crane is going through college and lacks the funds. He goes to see his old childhood friend to see if he can borrow some money off him in exchange for a service. This is before Crane is Scarecrow and Bruce is Batman.
Pairing : Wayne/Crane (ThisChapterIs-Nearly-SelinaFree)
Rating : PG-13-ish.
Words : 3435
Comments : Luffed. :3
Music :  I listened to Autumn Rose a lot while writing this.


Previous Parts :

Autumn
Part I | Part II

 

The evening was spent in solitude for Jonathan, and the same was said about his meal at dinner. Alfred had set the large dining room table with the nicest smelling foods and the nicest looking lasagna he had seen in years. The room itself was unfamiliar to him; as a child he was never permitted to eat in here. Usually, during lunch time or snack time, he and Bruce would have a picnic outside or eat their meals in Bruce's room, laughing and joking through the whole meal.

 

It wasn't until halfway through dinner when Jonathan looked to Alfred from his chair at the one end of the table and spoke. “Where is Bruce?” he asked while he spread out his food along his plate; he was always a messy eater who liked playing with his food.

 

“Master Bruce has gone out to dinner with Miss Kyle tonight, I do believe,” Alfred spoke up as he walked over to Jonathan and fixed a napkin inside around his collar.

 

Jonathan blinked and allowed Alfred to do so, feeling only the slightest bit awkward about being fussed over like a child. “Ah, right.” Jonathan nodded his head, remembering how Bruce had asked Selina to dinner when he had been getting ready to make her breakfast that morning.

 

Jonathan frowned as he thought back to earlier, wasn't it Bruce who asked him to come to dinner with the promise of lasagna? In reality, hadn't he asked him to dinner before Selina?

 

'Don't think like that,' Jonathan said as he took his first bite of the lasagna and sighed contently as the taste, all thoughts of Bruce and everything associated with him swiftly leaving his mind. “Alfred, you are a magician of the culinary arts,” the college student spoke through a mouthful of food.

 

Alfred smiled and shook his head. “Swallow your food before you talk, now.”

 

Jonathan did so, then took the napkin out from his shirt collar and wiped his mouth. “I think I'm done, Alfred. I'm sorry to have wasted all this food you worked so hard on,” he sighed, looking down the table at all the untouched bowls of food.

 

Alfred smiled. “I'm sure someone else will come home to it and be thankful it is here.”


-*-
 

It was a quarter past two in the morning when Bruce arrived home. His hair was disheveled, his black dress shirt under his jacket buttoned roughly, some of the buttons put through wrong holes, but still he glowed with the presence of a gentleman.

 

Bruce had thought about walking to the kitchen to rummage through the leftovers from dinner - which he knew would be there waiting for him, but changed his mind as he walked by the main living room's entranceway. He stopped in his tracks and smiled at the sight before him.

 

Jonathan had fallen asleep in the living room, sitting in one of the high-backed cushioned chairs near the fireplace. The young man's feet up, sockless, on the ottoman of the chair and his glasses sliding down his quickly recovering nose. His head was tilted towards the left hand side, chin resting against his shoulder. The college student had been busy studying through one of the books that now rested on his lap, but all that seemed to have gotten done in his study time was a nap, and a bit of drool that now ran down the corner of Jonathan's open mouth.

 

Bruce sat down on the chair facing opposite of the one that Jonathan now slept in. He leaned close while he rested his arms on his knees with his head tilted in an inquisitive motion. He studied the young man quietly for a moment; he observed every tiny idiosyncrasy that distinguished him.

 

Jonathan twitched in his sleep, that was one observation on Bruce's behalf. He was obviously in the deeper stages of sleep, and yet his fingers twitched again and again. Bruce had once rescued a cat from the old barn down the road from his mansion. He had brought the cat home and all night while it slept at the end of his bed it's paws would contract and retract. Alfred had told him it was due to the cat's relief and happiness at having a nice home to live in, instead of being out and exposed to the elements. Bruce laughed; at least this time it wasn't he who picked the stray up and brought it home, Alfred wouldn't be able to blame him for that.

 

Bruce allowed his eyes to travel down from Jonathan's face, along his long legs and finally coming to a rest at his bare feet. What had possessed him to remove his socks? The billionaire shook his head, then noted how long Jonathan's toes were and how one of them was more crooked than all the others. The one upon his left foot, second from the bigger toe, was crooked and leaning in the opposite direction. It lead Bruce to believe that he had broken the toe in the time that he had been away. From that thought, Bruce could only wonder what else the young man had gone through without him knowing.

 

Where had his first job been? What high school had he gone to? Had he ever been life-threateningly sick, that is, besides the sickness he was evidentially suffering from now? Had he ever found love? What hobbies did he have?

 

Bruce became upset at himself; here he was throwing money into the wind to fund Jonathan's education, and he still barely knew anything beyond what he had been like when he was five. Why did he care so much as to do such a good thing? He wasn't known for this type of open-hearted kindness.

 

Jonathan's eyebrows narrowed and his eyes winced. His back arched up from the chair just an inch before he settled back down and breathed in deeply. Falling asleep in an upright chair was never good on the back or neck.

 

Bruce pushed all the recent thoughts out of his head and stood up. He took the book off of Jonathan's lap and closed it before he set it on the floor. “Come on,” he whispered quietly as he shook Jonathan's shoulders gently in an attempt to wake him.

 

Jonathan's mouth hung open, a faint trail of drool from the corner down to the tip of his chin. “Stop it,” Jonathan mumbled, lightly he pushed away Bruce's arms. “I'm tired.”

 

“You need to go to bed,” Bruce whispered quietly. He a hand to the side of Jonathan's head to hold it up right; the younger man continued to tilt it over onto his shoulder to try and fall back asleep again.

 

“I can sleep here, Bruce.” Finally, Jonathan was awake enough to realize who was there with him in the dimly lit living room. The college student opened his eyes and looked up at Bruce quietly.

 

“Were you waiting up for me?” Bruce raised an eyebrow to Jonathan as he gave a slight smile. He took Jonathan's arms and pulled him up from the chair; in one motion he stood him up on his feet.

 

“I wasn't,” Jonathan said snappily as he rubbed his eye with the back of his hand. “I wouldn't want to be around if you happened to be busy again tonight.”

 

“Busy?” Bruce asked. “The last time I was busy was when I was at school.”

 

“So the blond was an extra bit of homework then?”

 

Bruce laughed, his head shook as he and Jonathan walked from the living room out to the hall. Once they found the stairwell, Bruce stopped and turned to face Jonathan.

 

“Does it make you uncomfortable?” Bruce asked quietly, his arms crossed over his chest.

 

“No. It doesn't. Why should it?” Jonathan asked as he stepped by Bruce and began his walk up the dark stairs slowly; he paused only to wait for Bruce to catch up.

 

“I thought maybe you were jealous.”

 

Jonathan froze on the stairs. He turned around but not a word came to mind as to what to say. “Jealous?” he echoed, unknown as to what else he could say.

 

“Selina's pretty,” Bruce shrugged and talked as though it was only common facts to the world that everyone should know. “People see her with me and they become jealous.”

 

Jonathan stayed quiet and shook his head. “I'm not jealous.” Jonathan struggled to think with his sleep-rattled mind. Did Bruce mean to imply that he was jealous of him, or of Selina?

 

Bruce studied Jonathan quietly, then gave a brief smile. “Well. Good night then.”

 

“You're not going to bed?” Jonathan asked, then looked around. He expected a clock to be around on one of the tall walls in the stairwell. “What time is it, anyway?”

 

“Just a little after two,” Bruce said, “and I'm just going to grab something to eat. I didn't get very much to eat tonight,” he smirked.

 

Jonathan rolled his eyes and continued on up the stairs; he called an annoyed 'good night' to Bruce on the way up.

 

The younger man returned up to his room and stretched after he closed the door behind him. His back was stiff and his neck had a crick, but other than that the small nap on the chair downstairs hadn't been too bad. He rubbed the sleep from his eyes before he walked over to the closet at the end of the room to see what there was to change into for night dress.

 

Jonathan gave a small laugh as he opened the dresser and found clothes for him already. There were a few suits, night apparel, socks, undergarments, dress shirts, slacks, and an assortment of shoes. How did Alfred manage to do this all so quickly?

 

Sleep slowed Jonathan down as he changed into a set of light blue, satin dress wear. It was the first time, and last time – he imagined – that he would ever wear such a fabric. Wasn't this usually made into women's wear?

 

Jonathan snorted again. 'Anything to call me a girl, right Bruce?' he thought as he smoothed the wrinkles of the night shirt on his chest before he peeled back the covers on his bed and crawled in. It wasn't too long before Jonathan fell into a deep sleep curled up within the bedsheets.

 

-*-

 

The next morning was the start of the weekend. It was a Saturday morning for cartoons and breakfast cereals, but instead Jonathan spent his lazy morning with Bruce. He followed him around in his massive garage, looking at all the cars that the billionaire had begun to accumulate.

 

“How did you get so many cars when you weren't even really linked to your family funds, yet?” Jonathan asked as he looked in through the window of a very impressive silver Mercedes-Benz. He had only assumed that because he hadn't taken over the Wayne Enterprises that he wouldn't have been able to use their money on extravagant things.

 

“One for school,” Bruce muttered as he began pulling things off the motor of a bruised and broken junk car he had positioned in the middle of the garage. “One for highway driving. One for visits,” he hissed as he pinched his finger on something in the motor, then placed the finger into his mouth to stop the minimal bleeding. “One for press conferences.”

 

“The Lamborghini, right?” Jonathan asked as he nodded his head over to the far corner of the garage; he had seen the frame of the car under a tarp. “I've only seen it a hundred times on the news and in the papers with you getting out of it.”

 

“It's my favourite,” Bruce smiled as he kept his finger in his mouth.

 

“Obviously,” Jonathan walked over to the junk car Bruce was working on and sat down on the inner edge of the hood. He leaned over and looked inside at the motor and all the other non-working parts. “What are you doing to this rust-bucket anyway? You'll get tetanus if you've cut your finger on anything in here, you know,” Jonathan warned as he took Bruce's finger out of his mouth and inspected it.

 

“It's a risk I'll happily take,” Bruce smiled as he let Jonathan have his finger for a moment and went back to work with his other hand. “It's my hobby. I like fixing up old cars, and if I can't do that, then I take the parts and I'll build one that works.”

 

Jonathan laughed. “I didn't know you grew up to become the head of an enterprise and a grease monkey.” He let go of Bruce's finger and turned back to glance into the engine with Bruce. “What's that part?” Jonathan's finger pointed down to the side of the engine.

 

Bruce looked at Jonathan and raised an eyebrow. “You call me a grease monkey and you expect me to tell you what it is?”

 

Jonathan scowled. “I meant it in the nicest term.”

 

“Yeah, as in, 'what a handsome grease monkey'.” Bruce shook his head as he dove back into the engine and began pulling out cords and lines that ran into the engine.

 

“No, really. Is this the battery?” Jonathan pointed to the black box on the left hand side of the motor.

 

“Yes.”

 

“This. This is the oil line?”

 

“Yes.”

 

“Wait, Bruce.”

 

“Jonathan, I'm a little busy.”

 

“But did you drain the oil line?”

 

“Do you mind not talking to me while I'm -- ”

 

Bruce froze where he was, his eyes closed as oil sprayed up from the engine, coating his entire face and splattering across Jonathan's sweater vest and his slacks.

 

Jonathan jumped up from the engine, his mouth open from shock at being sprayed with oil. The shock slowly subsided as he saw Bruce turn around, the man's eyes winced closed as his entire face was painted a glossy black colour from the oil that now dripped from his skin. Bruce leaned back against the car as if it was the most natural pose in the world for him.

 

The first instinct Jonathan had, he noted guiltily, was not to grab a towel for the blinded man, but to laugh. Jonathan covered his mouth with his hand, desperately trying not to let Bruce hear him laughing. “I...I just...see, this is what happens when you don't drain...the....” Jonathan spoke stiffly, trying not to burst into a fit.

 

“Laugh. Go ahead. Just laugh while you get me a goddamn towel,” Bruce sighed; he didn't have to hear the snickering to know that the college student found it more than just amusing.

 

Jonathan found the closest towel and brought it over to Bruce, pressing it into his hand and watching as he tried his best to remove the thick layer of oil from his face.

 

The first sight to Bruce's eyes was Jonathan, huge grin on his face as he struggled not to laugh; Bruce was sure that Jonathan would burst a rib if he didn't let out the building urge to laugh. “Thanks, you're a good monkey assistant,” Bruce smiled as he raised an oiled hand and patted Jonathan atop his head, a mess of oil was left in the younger man's brown hair.

 

Jonathan closed his eyes as a trail of the oil ran down his forehead and around to his ear. He opened his eyes and smiled at Bruce. “You wait right here. I'm going to find some grease and make you eat it.” He turned around and shook his head, disgusted by the feeling of the slick oil in his hair.

 

-*-

 

An hour later, Jonathan had taken his second shower of the day and still could feel the oil in his hair weighing down on his head.

 

“It's probably good for your hair. Makes it more shiny.” Bruce offered as he sat in the kitchen eating a few crackers from a box he had found in the pantry.

 

Bruce too had had his shower, and was parading around in his house in torn jeans and a towel around his neck, nothing more. Though he had taken a shower, Jonathan could still see bits of oil and grease around Bruce's hairline.

 

“Look at that, you can't even wash yourself properly,” Jonathan leaned up as Bruce walked by and swiped off a bit of the grease that had been bothering Jonathan to look at.

 

Bruce looked at Jonathan's fingers then rubbed his fingers to his forehead. “You're right. Maybe I should have asked for your help in the shower?” he grinned as he walked around Jonathan and walked back out to the living room. A moment later the television was switched on and Bruce sat on the ottoman and watched.

 

Jonathan tilted his head as Bruce walked away. 'What does that even mean?' he thought quietly to himself, a bit of blush crept across his face.

 

“Monday is your first day of school, isn't it?” Bruce called in from the next room.

 

Jonathan got up from the kitchen table and joined Bruce in the living room, nodding his head. “Yeah, it is,” he leaned over and looked at the television, a special being shot on the campus of Gotham University, all the dorm students moving their things into the rooms this weekend.

 

Jonathan smiled slightly as he remembered back to last year when all he had to move into his dorm room was his books and his jacket. It was a huge difference when he compared last year to this year.

 

“Still want to go back to the dorms?” Bruce asked as he nibbled on a cracker.

 

Jonathan shook his head, a serious look on his face. “Not anymore, now that I've had a taste of the good life here,” he smiled. “I think I'll stay for this year, at least.”

 

Bruce smiled smugly as he stood up from the ottoman and set the box of crackers on the table. “What's your time table look like this year?” he asked.

 

Jonathan thought back to the timetable he had received in a envelope along with the books that Bruce had picked up for him. “Mondays and Tuesdays are the busiest. I actually have Fridays off, though,” he pointed out. Jonathan hadn't had a day off last year during his studies, and so it would be nice to have at least one day during the week to work on whatever projects he wanted.

 

“Fridays off?” Bruce brought the towel from around his neck up to his head where he rubbed it around and dried his hair. “I have a favour to ask of you then.”

 

Jonathan raised his eye in interest. “What is it?”

 

“Not really a favour, actually,” Bruce raised his head up and set the towel back down on his shoulders. “I'm going to enlist you as my assistant on Fridays.”

 

Jonathan's jaw dropped. “What do you need me for on Fridays?” Jonathan quickly recovered and shifted his weight to his right leg and crossed his arms, a very demanding body expression for someone who was smaller than the person he was talking to.

 

“Note-taking. Phone-answering. And et cetera.” Bruce smiled as he left the living room and traveled down the hallway, smiling as he heard Jonathan's feet not far behind him.

 

“I'm not a secretary.” Jonathan snapped. “I have projects I'll need to do on that day.”

 

“Do them on the weekend,” Bruce said as he stopped by the laundry room and grabbed a shirt. He threw it up over his head and pushed his arms through the arm hole quickly. “I'd rather have you as my traveling secretary than go through all the damn resumes I've gotten and pick one there. Takes up too much time.”

 

“Why do you need me for it?” Jonathan sighed. “There's probably people ten-times more qualified for this job in that pile of resumes.”

 

“You're probably right,” Bruce said with a thoughtful tone. “But, I don't have to pay you.”

 

Jonathan sighed as the feeling of defeat dawned on him. There wasn't a thing he could possibly do that would end in him having his Fridays free and still being able to go to school. “...So, I'll work in your office, answering phones and the like?” Jonathan asked, making sure of his duties.

 

Bruce smiled. “...You have no idea what I do for a living, do you?”

 

Jonathan scoffed and shook his head. “It can't be that bad if you only need me for that one day a week.”

 

Bruce smiled and shrugged his shoulders. “I guess you'll find out on Friday, won't you?”


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6 comments or Leave a comment
Comments
67 From: 67 Date: September 21st, 2008 09:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
AHHH IT'S NOT SPAM IF WE LOVE IT >:3

e had brought the cat home and all night while it slept at the end of his bed it's paws would contract and retract. Alfred had told him it was due to the cat's relief and happiness at having a nice home to live in, instead of being out and exposed to the elements.
aw aw aw aw aw JONATHAN. YER JUST LIKE A KITTTTTY ♥__________♥

oh man is he in for a surprise?!
indochinee From: indochinee Date: September 21st, 2008 09:33 pm (UTC) (Link)
Mwahahah! Kitty Crane. Mm. <33

A surprise? .....mmmmmmaybe. It's a sekrit!

Thanks for reading. :D
kproflostsouls From: kproflostsouls Date: September 21st, 2008 11:48 pm (UTC) (Link)
The scene with them and the car was adorable.

I love the love of them ending up coverd in grease.

and I agree with eariler comments jonaathan IS liek a kitty!
indochinee From: indochinee Date: September 21st, 2008 11:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
He totally is. :D Kitten!Jonathan. <3

Thanks for the comment! :D
jmie From: jmie Date: September 22nd, 2008 05:09 am (UTC) (Link)
Having fun reading, still! Hm, now even I'm curious as to what Bruce is up to on Fridays.
(Deleted comment)
indochinee From: indochinee Date: September 22nd, 2008 07:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
I love lurkers. :D I totally knew your out there!

Thanks so much for reading my crazy little fanfic. :D Means a lot to me!
6 comments or Leave a comment