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Title: A Brief Summery of Notable Historical Tragedies, as Experienced by Iason and Timotheous
Fandom: Batman, Neme's Pit!verse AU
Author: LectorEl

Rating: PG 13. See warnings
Summery: They never do make it to their forties.
Pairings/Characters: Jason/Tim, cameos from Bruce and Damien
Warnings: Non-graphic depictions of child brides, gang violence, fatal illnesses, murders, suicides, murder-suicide, and attempted genocides. Unflattering depictions of Christianity. Allusions to cannibalism, cultural erasure, blood libel, gang rape, extortion rackets, violent insanity, and kidnapping. The past is not a nice place. Read at your own risk.

_______________________

1. Fourteenth Century Algeria
Tibah is seven when she is married to Naeem, twelve years older than she. The nineteen year old kisses her forehead on their wedding night and tucks her into bed to rest. She drifts in and out of sleep, oddly comforted by her new husband’s shadow falling across her face in the dim lamplight. He sits beside her till dawn, crooning lullabies like the ones her nursemaid sang. She is blessed, Tibah thinks muzzily, to have such a husband.
 
She grows up under Naeem’s watchful eye. Their first kiss happens a few months after her twelfth birthday, when Naeem catches her reading in the household’s interior garden. For weeks afterward, she can’t look at her husband without blushing. They make love for the first time on her fourteenth birthday, full moon high in the night sky. At sixteen, their first child is conceived during Ramadan. Their entire household rejoices, and Tibah is all but delirious with joy. Naeem sings, low and sweet, as he prepares to leave with the trading caravan. His wife and their baby will want for nothing. He will bring back fine silks and fragrant herbs, painted toys and jewelry fine enough for his beloved. Nothing less will do. He kisses her cheeks, her forehead, promises her he will be back in no more than half a year’s time, to welcome their new child into the world.
 
By the time Naeem returns, the epidemic has nearly burned itself out. His infant son, born a month too early, has miraculously survived. Naeem’s young wife died from the plague and complications from birthing him.
 
He lives just long enough to name the child Daamin.
 
2. Pre-Elizabethan England
Daniel was born to a wealthy, respectable family of merchants who had long since publicly converted to Christianity to escape the persecution of those of the Jewish faith. Timothy was the child of persons unknown, found on the steps of Daniel’s home when he was an babe still teething. It amused Daniel’s mother to see her eldest son dote on the foundling boy like a young man with his intended, and she prevailed upon her husband to allow the child a place in heir household as a serving boy.
 
They had a decade together before a jealous rival tradesmen claimed he’d seen the family drinking the blood of an infant at Passover. Within a few days, Timothy was torn from Daniel’s arms, weeping like a much younger child. The churchman forced him to watch as they burned his family at the stake. It was for his own good, they claimed, to save his soul from damnation with the Christ - Killers who had stolen away a Christian babe.
 
It was a year before the monks took their eye off him long enough for him to use the kitchen knife he’d stolen.
 
3. 1870’s Australia
‘Timothea’ and ‘Alexandra’ met at the church home at six and eight, respectively.  They weren’t from the same tribe, but they spoke a common tongue, and shared a common loss. Timothea had left behind a little brother the government had mercifully not seen and Alexandra an elder sister who should have been given custody of her when their mother died. And they both despised the Englishmen who had stolen them from their homes.
 
They were the home’s worst nightmare together. Beating couldn’t stop them from speaking their native language with each other, and no punishment could make them acknowledge the Christian’s god. By Timothea’s fifteenth birthday, both their backs were ragged with scars from whippings, and the church had written them off as a lost cause. They slept in the same bed each night, curled close together and planning their future. As soon as Alexandra reached legal adulthood, they’d run away together and find their families.
 
Neither of them made it to eighteen. Alexandra bleed out after a group of local boys assaulted her. Timothea was tried and sentenced to death after she hunted them down and slit their throats. She died laughing on the gallows.
 
4. Turn of the last century Chicago
Timmy is a sweet kid. Twelve years old and the beloved, coddled son and little brother of a pair of bosses in the Chicago branch of the Black Hand. Jason’s sixteen and working his way up the ranks of the White Hand. Babysitting Timmy until his daddy pays up the ransom is supposed to be his big break. He hadn’t counted on liking the kid.
 
Timmy’s clever. Really clever. He can solve a crossword puzzle faster than anyone Jason’s ever met, and can do things with finance records that make his daddy’s extortion racket obsolete. Jason’s quick to call him the best friend he’s ever had. For a while, everything’s good. Timmy stitches up Jason after he gets caught in bar brawls. Jason sneaks him out to play poker, because damn, the kid is a fucking master of card sharking.
 
They barely notice the passing of time, as weeks and then months go by without payment of the ransom. Jason ignores the grumblings of the higher ups about the cost of feeding and housing the kid. The day he comes home to see White Hand members wrapping up Timmy’s mutilated corpse something snaps in his head. By the time they manage to take him down, Jason’d killed everyone in the house and was going for the White Hand’s Head. Jason’s last thought, as he stares down the barrel of a gun, is the hope that he’ll end up in the same hell as Timmy.
 
5. Post WW1 Kazakhstan
They meet in a refugee camp. Tibrets is fleeing Ukraine with his father Bohuslav, leaving behind an elder brother too ill to make the trip. Fedir had already lost his remaining family in the desperate flight from Russia. The year is 1932, and the soviets have taken the entirety of the harvest. They won’t let the government import food, have stolen away any that can be found. The Soviets are trying to kill them. They all knows it, but no one is willing to speak the words. Everyone in the camp is desperate, starving, fearful. The bodies of the dead are butchered as the remaining food runs low. The camp is the very image of hell, brought to life in terrible, vile accuracy.
 
Tibrets somehow manages to find enough food for them to survive. Always. Fedir and Bohuslav cannot get Tibrets to reveal what he must do for this bounty. Tibrets grows paler and quieter and stiller as the months go on, fading before their eyes. Fedir cannot bear it, and Bohuslav refuses to watch his remaining son die by inches. On the longest night of the year, Bohuslav doctors his son’s evening tea with sedatives stolen from one of the few doctors remaining. They watch as Tibrets’ breath begins to stutter and slow, finally stilling. Fedir gathers up the corpse of his beloved, and together they walk out into the freezing air. Nobody was ever able to find the bodies.
 
6. Somewhere, Sometime
They meet as children and young men, as brothers and sisters, as servants and slaves. They meet as windowed mothers and orphaned foundlings, dearest allies and despised enemies. They meet as princes and peasants, holy men and untouchables.  They meet, drawn to one another as a moth is to a flame, entranced by their own undoing. It ends, in bloody froth from plague-rotted lungs, in soul shattering betrayal, in blood drying under their fingernails. It ends in madness, in grief, in black hatred. It ends in pain. They meet. They meet. They meet.
***
A/N: Morbid game of the day: Name that historical tragedy. Every single one of these has some historical basis, however loosely interpreted.

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