The Promise

Roy couldn't believe what Slade had done. It was bad enough that Deathstroke had used the serum on Rose, his own daughter, but what he'd done to those kids… It defied description.

Cody had been one of his Titans, and Roy felt like he should have looked after him after he'd lost his arm in the Crisis. And Batgirl…Roy didn't know where Dick's head was at, or any of the Bats' for that matter, for them not to notice that Batgirl had been gone from Gotham for over a year before she surfaced as a villain, a villain with perfect diction and a killer instinct. And why hadn't they tried to stop her, to get her help?

That year where they were gone from Gotham wasn't an excuse for not noticing then, and their own issues weren't an excuse for not helping her now. But with Dick off being stupid, Tim still grieving, and Batman being Batman…well, it fell to whoever cared to try and help Batgirl heal. The antidote that Robin had given her had cleared most of the serum from her blood, but there'd been other stuff in there, stuff Slade had used to control her, stuff she needed to get out of her system.

Cass, as Roy found out was Batgirl's name, was a fighter. She fought through the withdrawal symptoms even when her faith in her defacto family had been broken, and was soon clean. Clean, and asking the tough questions.

"Why didn't they come for me?" she said in a small voice, one almost smaller than the tight ball she'd curled herself into in the corner of the sofa. She was such a kickass fighter, it was easy to overlook how petite she really was…until she fell apart.

Roy didn't know what to tell her, except, "I don't know. But I'm here for you now."

As Cass huddled in his arms to cry, Roy hugged her, whispered soothing nonsense phrases to her, and wondered why he felt as if he'd promised her forever. And why forever with the young woman in his arms, who'd already worked her way into his heart, felt so right.