Disclaimer: I not owning dem! I wish I did.
It started out completely innocently. It was just the 'in' thing, the thing to do. Or say. Whatever. It was funny, if delivered correctly. It got eye rolls, chuckles, "You're so immature"s, blank stares and sometimes giggles.
It was the perfect tool for a fourteen-year-old mischief-maker of a boy known as Tim Drake to utilize in his quest for world domination in the form of annoying everyone around him into submission.
It was like the plague; infectous and unstoppable. Once you got started saying it, there was no stopping it.
The first time he had heard it, he was as confused as everyone else until he got the hang of the nonsensical beauty of the two little words.
He had started out as clueless as everyone else…
Tim turned around to see his friend Kenny running towards him at the speed of light. The wild-haired boy was the class clown, a huge grin constantly occupying his face and a completely pointless joke always up his sleeve. He was Tim's closest friend at school, possibly because of everything the two had in common: Kenny was being raised by his aunt and uncle instead of his parents because they had died, they both were total cut-ups, and they were also two of the smartest kids in their class.
"What's up?" Tim responded warily. Whenever Kenny had that especially huge grin on his face, it typically meant trouble for anyone who crossed his path.
"Wanna hear the latest joke?" Kenny demanded, eyes glinting as though Tim was about to fall into his trap.
"Um…sure," Tim answered carefully. "What is it?"
"It! It! Your mom's it!" Kenny cackled madly as though he had just uttered some clever witticism, before spinning on his heel and running gleefully in the opposite direction.
Tim, usually the one to mess around and crack up, stood there in bewilderment at the ridiculous words that had just come out of his friend's mouth, watching Kenny disappear rapidly in the sea of students filling the hallway.
"Your…mom?" he echoed, an utterly baffled expression upon his face. He shook his head. He was sure he would never understand this one.
Yet somehow, the two mysterious little words were irresistably catchy. He heard more of his friends, and the popular kids, and the unpopular kids go around saying it. Kenny had started a trend without even meaning to.
He heard it all day long.
During math, a gleeful whisper:
"Ha! Your mom does algebra!"
During American history, a barely stifled giggle:
"Abraham Lincoln…is your mom!"
"Your mom looks like the mystery meat!"
And then he caught himself saying it without even meaning to.
"Timothy, if y is five squared and x is 3y-17, what is x?" his teacher asked.
The words tumbled out of his traitorous mouth before he could stop them.
"Your mom is x," he replied automatically, then covered his mouth in horror as he realized what he'd just said. The class burst into giggles. Mrs. Johnston was not amused.
"I mean, x equals fifty-eight," Tim murmured, face blooming red as he looked down at his desk.
It only got worse.
"Tim, have you done that paper on the work of Leonardo da Vinci yet? It's due tomorrow," Kenny asked him in the hall one day.
"Your mom is due tomorrow," Tim replied absently, before swinging around and stopping in his tracks, staring Kenny dead in the eye. "I mean…"
"Dude! You are so good at that!" Kenny beamed proudly, as though he had just accomplished his life goal and not just been told that his mother was 'due' tomorrow.
Tim sighed. Then a grin lit up his face. This was actually kind of fun…
Pretty soon he was addicted. There was no stopping him. This was so much fun, he couldn't help himself. Every sentence that came out of his mouth included the phrase 'your mom'.
He was on a roll. It was like an unstoppable force, plowing through hapless victims who stood bewildered and scratching their heads in confusion.
This was the most fun he'd had with a single joke in ages. You could say it anywhere, and it didn't matter how little sense it made because regardless of the situation, adding 'your mom' into a sentence simply didn't make sense anyway.
He brought the infection home with him, too. It turned out Alfred had not in fact seen it all. Yet, anyway.
"Where's Bruce?" Tim asked one day, dumping his things on the floor and flopping down on one of the expensive white couches occupying the living room. Alfred winced as Tim successfully managed to both leave a mess on the floor and disrespect the furniture at the same time. He began to pick up Tim's things for him.
"He has a late conference call with Tokyo," the butler stated. "He will not be back until after supper. It will probably be a mere matter of minutes between when he comes home and you two leave for patrol."
"Your mom's going on patrol, too," Tim said cheerfully. He hopped up from the couch, not even noticing that Alfred had ceased his clean-up and was staring at Tim like he'd grown another head. He was so used to either this reaction or everyone else laughing that it hadn't crossed his mind that the elderly English gentleman would have no idea what he was talking about.
"Master Timothy," Alfred called cautiously to the boy's retreating back. "No snacks—dinner will be ready at six and I expect you to be hungry."
A groan and the creak of the refrigerator door shutting was his reply. Alfred listened carefully. It seemed the elusive joke had been a one-time event, but then he heard, softly muttered and clearly not intended for Alfred to hear…
"Your mom is hungry, Alfred."
Tim waited up for Bruce, since it was Friday and that meant he got to tag along on patrol tonight.
"How was Tokyo?" Tim asked, poised precariously on the edge of the kitchen on one hand when Bruce came in. Whereas Alfred would have immediately been shocked and ordered him to get down, Bruce merely glanced at him and replied mildly,
"If you fall, I hope you know that means no patrol or missions for several weeks."
Tim ignored him. "Was it interesting? Did you buy anything? Like a the entire country? Or—I know—" Tim's face lit up at the thought. "A team of sumo wrestlers? Like you own the Gotham Knights? You could own the Tokyo sumo wrestlers and we could fly over and have our own box and watch them smash each other to bits—"
Now Bruce ignored him. "It was a conference call involving diplomats and business negotiations. There was no need to buy anything."
Tim sighed. Bruce always knew how to take the fun out of everything.
The man glanced at the clock. "Suit up—time to head out for patrol."
"Yessir." Tim saluted him and marched out of the room like a soldier. At the edge of the room he paused, and added, "It still would've been fun to have a couple of sumos, though."
"Flying all the way to Tokyo to watch overweight men wearing far less than they should is not my idea of a good time," Bruce said in a final tone that meant no more argument.
"Your mom is an overweight man," Tim muttered under his breath. His eyes went wide as he realized he hadn't said it quietly enough.
Bruce whipped around, then slowly stalked towards the boy.
"What…did you just say?" he demanded. Tim shivered and tried for a charming smile.
"I said…uh…I'm going to go change now, so I don't become an overweight man…uh, bye, Bruce!"
He turned and scampered off before Bruce could ask him any other questions about the idiotic sentence that had just wandered out of his mouth.
Tim had thought his 'your mom' jokes were like an unstoppable force.
Then he discovered that if anything could stop an unstoppable force, it was Batman.
Batman, apparently, could stop an unstoppable force. Why? Because he was Batman.
They were standing atop a roof, gazing out over Gotham's rooftops for any sign of trouble along one of their regular routes.
"There." Batman spoke the single word and pointed. A figure was sprinting stealthily along the rooftop. Batman and Robin followed him immediately, stealthily, and took him down easily several minutes later. A petty criminal who had idiotically chosen Gotham to carry out his crimes.
"Who are you?" Batman demanded harshly of the shaking man while Robin stood idly by, observing and having nothing to occupy his mind.
Well, nothing except…
"You are your mom." He uttered it quietly, and smiled, because it amused him. Batman stiffened, but decided to ignore Robin for the time being.
"Whose money is this?" Batman growled. The man whispered a response.
"Your mom's money," Robin sang quietly, grinning like an idiot. Batman, towering over the criminal, took a deep breath for patience and continued questioning his victim.
"Are you working for anyone?"
"He works for your mom!"
Batman had had enough. He whipped around and barked,
Robin froze. A tiny, guilty grin crept onto his face. "Uh…yessir, Batman?"
"Cease your idiotic babbling."
Robin rolled his eyes. "Coulda just told me to shut up, I woulda—"
"Robin." Batman's voice lowered dangerously.
Robin gulped. "Er…yessir. Shutting up now, sir."
Batman had more dignity than to roll his eyes at his sidekick, but it would be a lie to say he wasn't tempted.
He fixed his attention on the criminal again.
"You're new to this, aren't you?" he mused, glaring at the man, who was too terrified to say a single word to him. "That was entirely too easy…"
Robin couldn't help it.
"Your mom's…too easy…"
That did it. He had said it too softly for anyone to hear, but Batman had an extremely annoying knack for being able to do things no one else could, and in this case he had heard Robin's barely-whispered, nonsensical insult.
Robin gulped and backed away, eyes wide, as the large, intimidating figure of Batman slowly dropped the criminal and turned one hundred eighty degrees to face his guilty, about-to-be-seriously injured sidekick.
"I'm just gonna, uh, g-go h-home now…" Robin attempted to back away but stopped as Batman said no in a silky, soft tone which only meant trouble. Lots and lots of trouble.
"Oh, no." Batman's voice gained the intimidating, smooth quality that it tended to have whenever the Bat was in control and scaring someone and he knew it. He fixed Robin with the infamous Bat-glare that made hardened criminals wet their pants and plead for mercy.
"Would you care to repeat what you just said, Robin?" Batman's voice would have made the Joker run for cover.
"N-no, sir," Robin attempted a cheerful smile but faced with Batman's death-glare, found that rather difficult to pull off.
"I didn't think so." Batman smiled, and Robin gulped again. Batman never smiled. Or, almost never, and when he did, it was pretty much the last thing anyone ever saw.
"It would be in your best interest to sit in that corner, facing the wall, until I come and get you. Silently." It sounded like a suggestion, but with Batman, it wasn't. It was more of a, 'If you don't, bird-boy, you will not be flying again for a very long time' sort of suggestion.
Time-out! Robin scowled but then realized that it was either this or having his lights knocked out to get him to shut up and decided it wasn't so bad after all. He didn't dare say anything.
"So. I'm going to finish talking to this criminal. What are you going to do?"
"I'm going to sit in this corner not talking until you come and get me," Robin answered meekly. He sat in the prescribed corner, rather humiliated that this had to happen in front of the criminal, but deciding that in light of Batman's current mood it was probably for the best.
"Grumpy tonight, aren't we," he muttered under his breath.
"You just do not know when to be silent, do you?" Batman barked. He cuffed Robin on the back of the head and Boy Wonder III finally shut his face.
He sat glaring at the brick wall.
Tell your mom to be silent, Bats!
He was smart enough to keep that one to himself. He liked his head perfectly fine where it was right now, thank you very much.
Underneath Robin's mask, Tim grinned. He could, since he faced away from Batman. Well, at least now he knew the best way to get under the Bat's skin…
The Dynamic Duo returned to the Batcave in silence. Actually, more like Batman was brooding and Robin was sitting meekly in the passenger seat not daring to say a word.
When they got home, Robin began to head upstairs but Batman stopped him.
"We're not finished, Robin."
Ohh, darn. Robin had seriously been hoping to get away before Batman decided to lecture him. He sighed, knowing he was an idiot for thinking this.
"Er…I have to get up early for school tomorrow…"
Darn. Trust Batman to actually know what day of the week it was.
Robin turned back to Batman.
"Yes?" he asked resignedly. The Big Bad Bat crossed his arms over his chest and for a second Robin was seriously glad Batman was one of the good guys.
"Would you care to explain your behavior tonight, Robin?"
"I…" Robin ran a tired hand over his face. There was no logical explanation for this. Absolutely none. It ran beyond all reason and logic. There was no pattern, no purpose, not even a whole lot of humor to it. It just…was. Which would not be a remotely good enough explanation for Batman, who required a fifteen-step equation and explanation to everything, including why Tim's hair looked as it did.
"It's just a joke," he explained. He winced. Batman didn't do jokes.
"So you think this work that we do is funny?"
Robin sighed, a little peeved. "You know, it wouldn't kill you to enjoy yourself a little now and then."
Batman looked incensed, but at that moment his comm sounded, the Batsignal flashing urgently. Robin could have whooped for joy. Batman's lecture would have to wait! Maybe he would forget. Robin figured he might as well forget that hope; Batman had a memory like an angry woman with a list of ex-boyfriends.
They raced to the the building from which the signal projected, where Commissioner Gordon stood.
"It's the Joker," he said grimly, turning to face them. "He's escaped from Arkham. Again."
Your mom escaped from Arkham!
Robin actually clamped a hand firmly over his mouth to avoid saying those truly horrific words to the most powerful man in the city.
Commissioner Gordon misread his desperate attempts to stay quiet as horror. "Yeah, I know," he sighed. "Nothing we do seems to be able to get him to stay put. Good thing is, though…well, oddly, he raided a liquor store and we think he may be somewhat inebriated. We tracked him as far as 1632 East Melbourne Street."
Batman nodded. "The liquor will make him both easier to subdue and more dangerous." He didn't turn to look at Robin. "Come on."
"Aye aye, Cap'n!"
Robin hadn't had this much fun on patrol in a long time.
Batman restrained himself from tossing Robin off the side of the building.
"Call Batgirl," he ordered tersely as they grapple-hooked their way to where the Joker had last been spotted by the cops. "If it's the Joker, we'll need all the help we can get."
A few minutes later Robin reported that she was on her way.
They found a trail of alcohol at the scene. It was a very easy trail to follow. Commissioner Gordon was right; Joker was just a litte less than sober. They followed the trail to the docks…
"Hahahaha! A pirate's life for me!"
Robin blinked. The Joker sat upon the mast of a large yacht, clutching a bottle of vodka to his chest and cackling madly like usual.
Commissioner Gordon was wrong. Joker wasn't a little inebriated, he was completely drunk off his weird clown butt. This wasn't even going to be hard. This would be as easy as taking down your average criminal.
Batman lunged at him and easily knocked him off. Robin was right behind him. Joker giggled weakly. Batman winced as his putrid, alcoholic breath hit him hard. He was totally and completely out of it.
"Have a little too much to drink, did we, Joker?" Batman rumbled as he pried the bottle from the Joker and handcuffed him firmly. The Joker hiccupped cheerfully.
"Teeelll me, Batssss…" the Joker slurred drunkenly. "I really just wan-wanna know whooo you are…I got some ggggreeat l-l-liquor heeere for ya if you jusst sp-sp-spill it…"
"Your mom is Batman." Robin whirled in surprise as Batgirl landed next to him gracefully. Her eyes glinted. Robin didn't even know what to say to that. He had forgotten that there were members of the Batclan besides himself who actually had a sense of humor. Apparently he wasn't the only one to share the appreciation of the all-too-wonderful 'your mom' jokes, even though Batgirl was considerably older than he. Apparently no one was immune to the catchiness. Well, except Batman, because he was immune to anything and everything.
Batman paused in his work of tying up the Joker to face Robin. The boy knew he was basically writing his own death sentence, but figured he had nothing to lose…and besides…it was so terribly funny…
"Your mom is Batman," he whispered, glee lighting up his masked face. The Joker laughed insanely. Batman slowly stood up and faced Robin.
"Hey…" Robin laughed nervously and began backing away, towards the edge. Maybe if he just jumped off now he would get hurt and Batman would feel sorry for him and forgive him and maybe just forget the whole thing. Ha. And maybe the Joker would repent and start going to church while they were at it. Batman neared him with murder in his eyes. Robin could just see his life flashing before his eyes.
A tiny, disrespectful smile slid onto his face. He pointed at Batgirl and smirked like a man who knows he just went too far and that he will probably get the 'Batmobile and entire Wayne Manor cleaning' responsbility for the rest of his life, and told him…
"That's what she said."
1) Written when I should have been doing homework (when all good fics are written, imo).
2) Inspired by a friend who just can't get enough of 'your mom' and 'that's what she said'.
3) I don't know that much about the animated world of Batman and Robin, so please forgive any mistakes I may have made.
4) Reviews are always lovely but I got such a kick out of writing this it's not even my first priority!