"What I'm curious about is why Selina didn't reveal your identity! I mean being Selina, she would have jumped at the opportunity to bring you down with her."
Dick rubbed his temple and turned back to Bruce, who was looking unusually relaxed. A rare sight it was to see the batman still in full armor, leaning back against the swivel chair with both hands behind his head. It was disconcerting.
"Simple. Knowledge of my identity is the only advantage she has over me. To reveal it would mean that she no longer has any power over me. Or at least, that's how she thinks."
"Weird. How could you possibly know that?"
The batman turned to his comrade and flashed a toothy grin. "I guess I'm the only person with the ability to walk through her twisted mind."
"Besides, in a psychiatrical point of view, Selina is somewhat sadistic. She likes to be in charge, to own you. And when she gets bored, she tries to break you with her little games…just for the fun of it. It reaffirms her hold on you to see you pining for her but she also starts to loathe you when she sees how pathetic you have become."
Dick frowned and rubbed his chin. "I guess that's why she's obsessed with you. You're the only one she somehow could not wrap around her little finger and try as she might have, she couldn't take you down. Your identity is the only weapon she has to wield. Damn….What a crackpot!"
"She wasn't always like that. Circumstances sometimes change people." Bruce rose, his demeanor silent. A forewarning to Dick that the subject was officially closed.
Then he grinned, a cheeky boyish grin that made him look like a teenager with a naughty prank in mind. "If you would excuse me, I think its time to turn my complete attention to my future child…and his mother. There's something important I have to do that's been shelved for way too long."
"Yeah sure Pops."
He was sure he heard Bruce whistle as he made his exit from the batcave.
Weird alright. It was almost as if he did not mind being called "Pops". Dick grinned at Bruce's retreating back. Becoming a father sure changes a man.
In two hours, Bruce had cleaned up, had a hot bath and a shave. He threw on a pair of dark blue dungarees and then with a whole lot of gusto and a little bit of cringing, he pulled on the red sweater that very nearly burned his eyes with its fiery shade. He looked into the mirror. The sweater was something he had sworn never to wear…..but today, he would do anything for her. He would have to be very meticulous …very, very meticulous in planning his route to her room without being seen. At all.
Bruce went downstairs, took the beautiful bouquet from a beaming Alfred and left for the watchtower.
Diana, Princess of the Amazons, sighed for the umpteenth time and rubbed her belly. A gesture that had become a habit. She was still in amazement that another life grew within her. Child-bearing was unheard of Theymiscira, where the sisters were sculpted from clay, just as she was. However, from the moment she had made a commitment to Bruce, she vowed to live life the human way. Though she had heard many stories of the horrors and pains of childbirth, it did not deter her. She would have her child just like any other woman. Besides, what's a little pain for the wonder woman?
A loud rap on the door sliced through her thoughts and she jumped, startled.
She felt a wrenching deep in her belly. Not particularly pleasant but neither was it vile. He had come just as she knew he would. She took deep breaths to calm herself down but her mind was already reeling with excitement. She rose and glanced quickly at the mirror. Her cheeks were stained pink with embarrassment. Somehow he had that effect on her. That look he gave her..it made her feel beautiful and shy at the same time. She took more deep breaths and fixed her expression to what she thought was "mildly interested" and proceeded to let him in.
As she had pictured in her head, there he stood leaning against the door frame with that look on his handsome face. But in her fantasy he was without the very beautiful bouquet of tulips and bright red sweater.
Bright red sweater??!!
Her thoughts jammed up. She felt a swirl of emotions build up within her. He had worn it. She knew for the batman, that was as good as wearing his emotions on his sleeve. She was in a fix. She did not dare speak for fear that the tears would flow and so she stood awkwardly and stared back at him. He saw her discomfort and smiled reassuringly. A smile that could melt snow-capped mountains in an instant. That was enough. She threw her hands around him and buried her face in his neck.
She heard the words and hugged him tighter. He pried her off him and led her inside, seating her on the bed.
On one knee, he faced her, looking deep into her vivid blue eyes.
"I've missed you. More than anything. I'm sorry Diana, for everything I've put you through. I just want you to know that no one could take your place. Ever. You're one in a million. Marry me?"
She struggled to hold back a tear but it flowed anyway. She brushed it off her cheek and stared back at him. Did he just ask her that?
He reached into his pocket and pulled out a little red velvet box, opened it and held it out to her, his eyes sparkling as he watched her face light up with sheer delight.
Life is beautiful.And at that moment, he realized that she represented happiness to him. Something that was lost to him all these years.
To see her happy made him feel warm and fuzzy inside. A feeling he never imagined he was capable of feeling.
And It felt so damned good.
Thanks to everyone who took the time to read and review this story. I really enjoyed writing this and I'm so sorry I took so long to update.