Stuff Like That There
(Hugs)
by Em

A/N: So, it's short. Sorry. And kinda sappy, maybe. ::shrug:: Definitely not really cracky at all, huh? I posted this up first at my emsscraps lj, but it was summarily ignored up there. So, I tweaked it a little and remembered to post it up here!

Thanks: To everyone who continuously reviews my stuff-- ::blows kiss::

13: Masterpiece

"A photograph is memory in the raw."
~Carrie Latet

The camera angle was slightly skewed to the left, there was too much empty space along the left edge, the balance of colors was off, and the composition was not at all exemplary. What was more: the right part of his sleeve, where it billowed slightly, was cut off, and there was a spot along her right arm where the camera's automatic flash had overexposed her skin and made it look entirely too bright.

All in all, it was a supremely amateurish shot.

And yes, the fact that he was wearing a t-shirt with visible holes along the shoulders and where the seams at the collar was frayed from age, too many washings, and overuse and she was wearing one of his overlarge t-shirts (the one with the Trix Rabbit in faded and slightly chipped relief) that drooped a little off her left shoulder, and that both of them were spattered with bright splotches of sea green and burnt orange (colors, it should be noted, that repeated themselves randomly and in differing size blots, smears, and streaks on elbows, cheeks, fingers and yes, even hair) helped lend the picture a careless, clumsy air.

It had never (would never) occur to him to think that anyone who looked at the picture would think to compare it to an Ansel Adams or an Andy Warhol, and yes, he had had to sneak it out of the house before she could rip it up, but Garfield had caught them at just the right moment, and her deep amethyst eyes were shining with mirth, and her cupid's bow lips were quirked up in an almost smile, and the purple hair she'd started to grow out some was messy and haphazardly picked up at her nape in a bun that had been dangerously close to becoming undone all day, and her arms were locked around his waist...

And every time he looked at it, he remembered painting their apartment and arguing about the color scheme (she had wanted neutral shades for most of the house with dark red accents, and he had wanted bright colors on nearly every surface--the sea green and burnt orange had somehow been a compromise), and he remembered their friends bringing pizza, and how they'd all collapsed on the nearest available tarp covered floor space as the sun sunk below the horizon and how they'd been grateful they were able to finish, because although she had thought to make sure they had electricity, no one had thought to bring along a lamp.

Looking at that one picture, he remembered picking out furniture (arguing over materials and swatches and loveseat versus two armchairs) and living room curtains (convincing her that no, it wasn't appropriate to have blackout curtains over their living room windows), bath towels and toothbrush holders (and why, by Azar, would they ever need a heated toilet seat?), and teasing her about her attempts at cooking when he caught her picking out cooking utensils (wondering aloud whether she actually knew what that thing that looked like a medieval torture device was used for).

Passerby might look at the picture and wonder why it held such a place of honor (facing him at the end of his desk next to his computer where he'd see it every time his eyes strayed from the monitor), might mock the composition or the lack of proper lighting (might, even, tease him about it being a wonder that they'd actually managed to get any paint on the walls at all).

But, to Detective Richard Grayson (once Robin of the Titans), looking at that picture nestled into its simple black frame, was like looking at everything that he loved all wrapped up in ink and glossy paper, protected behind glass and everytime he looked at it, it made him smile.

Objectively, it was a far cry from a masterpiece, and sure, he had to hide it in a desk drawer every time the woman sitting next in the circle of his arms on the floor in the middle of their then barren (yet freshly painted) living room, her legs thrown over his lap came to visit him at the precinct for fear of her realizing he had it and destroying it on sight, but he didn't care.

To him, it stood for everything he'd ever wanted.

xxxxx

A/N: Soo, yeah. I kinda hate the ending a bit. What do you guys think? Did it suck?