Anywho, thanks to Andrew and Brendan. They were my dipstick for absurdity.
I don't own. Some day, tho. When I'm rich. I'm gonna buy them.
Stephanie woke with an arm wrapped around her. She was warm, she was safe... She was in someone else's bed....
Her eyes snapped opened and she looked around, but couldn't see much because it was dark. Wherever she was, the room was LARGE. That much she could see. Ever so slowly, her hand crept to the arm that was around her. It was strong and well-muscled. Would it be too much to hope that it was Robin's arm around her?
It was larger than Robin's arm... Nightwing? Yeah, right. That was a big ol' pipe dream.
Whoever it was, he sniffed her hair and let out a tired sigh.
So. How to play this? Should she be perfectly honest and tell this guy that she had NO idea where she was, how she'd gotten here, then kick his ass for obviously slipping her the mickey then having his way with her?
Or she could play along.
Ever so slowly she turned in his arms to face him. God he was good looking. Older, but... good-looking. She decided to reserve judgment before kicking his ass.
"So," she said with no commitment in her voice. She wished to sound neither expectant or unsure.
His lips pulled back in a smile. "So."
Ever so gently, almost reverently, he began kissing her collar bone. That was one point against kicking his ass.
"Wooh, Tiger," she said gently. "It's a little early."
He stopped what he was doing and looked at the window, which was covered over with a heavy drape. "I'm sure it's something," he said mischievously.
She'd be pissed... if he weren't so damned handsome. "Well... maybe just a little..." And... it wasn't like she was a bad person, right? She wouldn't have gotten this far with this guy if he were some kind of sweet-talker or a creep or something...
And she certainly felt herself suddenly in need of his attention... well, more of his attention... now that he'd started with just a little bit. He was a guy who knew what to do with his lips and his tongue.
He ought to, she thought to herself. He was like... thirty-something. She grew a bit indignant at that. "You're like... old enough to be my father," she said a little hotly as his lips trailed lower on her body.
He laughed. "Well, I thought we were over that." Sliding his arms under the small of her back, he held her and looked up into her eyes.
Holy shit, she realized. It's that Bruce Wayne guy.
"Honestly, Stephanie. I thought we talked out all the hang-ups last night."
"I... I don't remember."
He rolled his eyes. "Let me recap. First you were worried about hurting Tim. I said we'd already BOTH screwed that up royally, and we couldn't possibly hurt him worse. Then I was worried about the age thing. You were the one who said your birthday is in three months, so it wont be a problem much longer." His lips met with her neck. "And then you were worried about your training." He kissed her chin and trailed his lips up to her nose. "And I said that Batman's still Spoiler's boss. It's Bruce Wayne that's hopelessly in love with Stephanie Brown."
"Well... I worry about stuff... and Tim..."
"This is REALLY weird."
"Weird how? It's not something you say at... three in the morning. Everything's a little strange."
"Well, like, ok. I remember the Scarecrow, and Robin and Nightwing were there..."
His blue eyes lit up mischievously. "Scarecrow? Oh no, it was Cupid. He finally let us see what we had under the mask. And then we came home... and then we came up here...It's been almost two months, and you keep running hot and cold on me here. Are you having regrets? I want you to be completely sure..."
"Just... hold that thought."
She rolled out of bed, and made a mad dash for the door nearest the bed. She just knew deep down that was the door she wanted. And she barely made it to the toilet in time to...
"You ok in there?" he asked. "It's probably the eggs. I almost got `em down. Still... after last time... I'm going to give up on hard-boiled eggs. I think it's better for everyone involved."
When Stephanie's stomach was completely emptied, she dragged herself over to the sink. She washed her face and looked at her ruddy cheeks and red eyes. "It wasn't the eggs," she said. "That's the `bun in the oven' puke," she muttered, not sure if she was talking to herself or to him. Oh dear God up above. She was pregnant with Batman's baby.
"I... I wasn't expecting it. But... are you sure?"
"Pretty fucking sure," she answered.
"I... I can't say I'm not pleased. I know you wanted to put it off... but we're going to have to tell Dick and Tim, if this is true."
Her knees buckled, and as she went down, she felt her forehead smack off the marble edge of the sink.
"How are you?"
See, Steph told herself. She wasn't going completely insane. She'd done SOMETHING stupid in the field and gotten herself whapped on the head, and now Batman was going to patch her up and reprimand her. "Dunno. Gonna... throw up."
"I don't think you have anything left in you to throw up. You hit you head pretty hard though."
Ever so slowly, she opened her eyes, and screamed.
"Stephanie!" Bruce called, trying to get her to stop. And it was Bruce, not Batman trying reason with her.
But Steph couldn't. She was buck naked, he was buck naked, and she was on his bathroom floor. Like... right where she left off.
All she did was take another deep breath and start again.
"I hate saying that name up here. Come on. Let's get you off the floor. I think you need your head looked at." His strong arms hoisted her ever so gently off the floor and carried her back to the bedroom. "Are you sure you're OK?" there was a hushed urgency in his voice that she'd never heard before. "Don't scare me like that!" Bruce's soft tenor voice urged. After he let her rest for a moment, he put his arms around her. "I couldn't stand if something happened to you."
"Stop," she moaned. "You're getting creepy."
"Why? Because you're my hope and my salvation?"
"Exactly." Steph kept her eyes closed. She didn't think she could bear looking into those cobalt blue eyes again and seeing a man so far removed from the Bat. One she... found herself loving.
* * *
Later that morning, Dr. Leslie confirmed three things. First, it wasn't a concussion. Second, she was indeed pregnant. Third, Bruce was insane.
"Why don't you get dressed," Leslie told the girl, turning to Bruce. "While I talk to Bruce here out in the hall."
Stephanie shrugged and watched as the older lady dragged Bruce outside the door and let it slam closed. She could only catch pieces of their conversation. She didn't need to be an apprentice of the world's greatest detective to guess what it was about, though.
Outside, Bruce innocently scratched the back of his neck, trying to avoid Leslie's gaze.
She couldn't help it. She did something she'd been tempted to do for years: she slapped him upside the head. "I can't believe you, Bruce. I CAN'T. What the hell were you thinking?"
"Leslie, I can explain..."
"I'd ask what the hell you think you're doing, but you'll probably give me some half-baked answer."
"I love her, Leslie."
He took the older woman's hands. "Leslie, I really and truly do. I can't explain it. I... I hated her. And I hated her for distracting Robin... and then I only took her as an apprentice to keep her from getting herself killed... and one night... I can't even explain. It was raining, and she just kept talking... This... this is what I've been missing all these years, haven't I? Loving someone... and being loved in return."
Leslie had already composed her rebuttal before he'd even started in, but the soft, affectionate sincerity in his voice stopped her. "As usual," she informed him "Your timing is horrific."
"And now you're apologizing? I want a full work-up of you too."
"Bruce, I mean it! I don't know what's gotten into you, but I want to eliminate all the obvious!"
It was another two hours before they were allowed to leave, each with a clean bill of health and Dr. Leslie's blessing. Hand-in-hand, they left the clinic and went home.
"Well," Bruce tried to consol Stephanie. "The boys could have taken it worse."
"They could have taken it better, too." She was visibly miffed at Robin.
"They'll come around." He put an arm around her and kissed the top of her head. "Like I said before. It's not the first thing I've messed up with them. It probably won't be the last, either."
"I'm a mess-up?"
He pinched her behind. "No! I mean... things that should have been handled differently. See, I'm doing with you too."
"No. I knew what you meant. I just wanted you to pinch me."
With a grin, he pulled her towards the Crays computer. Sitting down in Batman's chair, he dragged her into his lap. "You'd better stop it. We have work to do."
"Uh huh. Don't think just because Spoiler's out of commission I'm going to stop ALL of your training." With his free hand, he punched in a sequence that brought up his most recent case file. "Read this and tell me what you think."
"And what're you going to do while I do that?" she asked mischievously.
"Marvel at the new life growing inside you, and how we're going to be a family... and how this whole strange, wonderful thing came into being..."
She smiled as he gently stroked her stomach. "Then what?"
"Mmm... probably sniff you... grow hungry... and plan my next meal."
Unable to hold back, Stephanie laughed.
No one threw up.