AN: Written for the ficathon on teentitanslash, over at LJ.
The smoke bomb just missed hitting Red's bike, but the thick black cloud blocked his vision for a second. It was long enough to send his wheel skidding against the base of an ice-spike, and that sent him sliding into the back of Robin's bike.
For a second he was sure he was about to crash and end up in some real pain, but miraculously, he stayed on his bike. Pulling it up, he hunkered down and gunned the throttle, getting closer and closer to Ding Dong Daddy.
He'd tuned the bike since stealing it from Robin, and Ding Dong Daddy's ridiculous hotrod didn't stand a chance against it. It only took him a couple of seconds and he was alongside, hopping onto the bonnet and grabbing the suitcase, leaving glowing Xs over the engine as a parting gift.
In the blink of an eye, he was back on his bike, swerving to avoid the debris of the exploding car behind him.
Finally glancing back, he could see the plume of smoke that showed him Robin had crashed out. Feeling a pang of sympathy at the pain Robin would be in after that, Red contemplated turning back and seeing what Robin would be willing to do for the case, but quickly decided against it. The other Titans would be there. Besides, making Robin worry for a while was always fun.
Sitting on a bench across from Pizza Express, Red shifted on the cold metal slats and shoved his hands into the pocket on his hoodie. Robin sure did take a long damn time to eat.
Restlessly, he wriggled about, trying to find a comfortable position on the cold seat. It was useless though. The council had obviously opted for torture instruments instead of actual seats. He sighed loudly. This was so boring, and seriously, Robin was too goody-two-shoes to even eat more than half a pizza, why the hell was it taking so long?
Finally, after another interminable ten minutes, Robin and the other Titans got up and left. Beast Boy, Raven and Starfire took to the air, and Cyborg and Robin started to walk across to the street to the parking lot.
Making sure his hood was well down over his face, Red got up and casually walked down the sidewalk towards the two.
It was so easy to get near them, to walk right into Robin and stumble against him. Even easier to use one hand to grab Robin's waist to steady him, and slip a little note into his belt at the same time.
"Oh, hey, sorry about that," drawled Red, grinning widely. Turning, he carried on down the sidewalk, casually whistling, knowing that Robin and Cyborg would be staring after him. It didn't matter. Let them see, they wouldn't recognise him. And by the time they figured it out, well, you can't I.D. someone from a grin.
It had seemed like a good idea to lure Robin to the warehouse that served as Jump's morning fish market – plenty of conveyor belts to stick Robin onto, lots of dark places to hide, towers of boxes that could be pushed onto people...
But it stank. Red had never realised just how pungent rotting fish guts really were, but damn.
And the other problem stopping his romantic sojourn with Robin was that the damn hero had brought all his little friends.
"Give up the suitcase, Red X!" shouted Robin, at the same time sending his friends to search the warehouse.
Making sure he was invisible, Red crept up behind Robin, about to make some witty remark when suddenly he had to dodge back from Robin's boot, flying up as it was to meet his face.
"I may not be able to see you, but I can still hear you!" Throwing punches and kicks, Robin actually managed to land a few, which sent Red stumbling back. "Titans! Here!"
"Oh fuck you! That note said private auction. Whenever you're ready to play by the rules, let me know." With that, Red grappled up to a window, kicked it open and disappeared into the night; ignoring the sensible voice in the back of his mind which told him that if Robin could contact him, that'd be a bad thing.
It wasn't until a week later that Red found an opportunity to corner Robin alone.
He easily pulled himself up onto the roof and walked over to Robin, who simply stayed where he was, facing the streets of the city.
"You ready to play by the rules, kid?" He made a show of looking around. "Or are we going to be rudely interrupted by your little pals?"
Robin shook his head. "No, I get it. Private auction, just me and you. "
The suitcase thudded dully onto the roof, not so close that Robin could grab it, but near enough he could see that it was definitely his.
"Aren't you going to ask me what I want?"
Robin shifted back from the edge and turned to face him, "I kind of figured you would just tell me."
"Well, this is an auction, so start bidding. Give me something you think I want."
Robin frowned at him, but glanced at the case and a resigned look came over his face.
"All right, what about I don't send you to jail for this."
"Nu-uh, don't need you to give me what I could have anyway. Try something else."
"As if. I'd get you and you know it. But fine, I don't know, a Christmas card or something."
"Nice thought. I'm touched. But since this is August, I want something a little more immediate."
"How the hell am I supposed to know what you want? If you hadn't noticed, I'm not a deranged criminal." Robin huffed and kicked at the loose gravel, looking quite a lot like a petulant child.
"This deranged criminal very nicely stole your prized possession from another deranged criminal, so maybe you should play along, or I'll find someone else to buy this from me."
"This isn't a fucking game! The suitcase is mine, and there is no one else who'll benefit from having it!"
Red shrugged his shoulders lazily and moved closer to Robin, invading his personal space. "No kid, this isn't a game. If the suitcase means that much to you, you can have it." Red laid his hand on Robin's hip, "But there's something I want, something that means a lot to me."
Red could feel Robin tensing. Probably about to try to run away. He used his free hand to quickly push his mask up past his mouth, and brought his other up to curl around the back of Robin's head.
The kiss wasn't very good. Robin was too startled to respond, and Red was more nervous than he let on. He pulled away rapidly, annoyed at himself, and irritated that Robin could probably see him blushing.
"A-anyway kid," he cursed himself for stuttering, "Here's your damn case." He stepped back and kicked it over.
Robin seemed to be stunned; his movements were slow as he bent down to pick it up. When he stood up with it, he clutched it to his chest, looking a lot younger than he normally did. Red supposed it was ok, since it wasn't everyday you got kissed by masked master-thieves.
"By the way kid," Red tugged his mask back down and stepped onto the fire escape. "How much is this worth?"
It was pretty funny, the way Robin's face changed when he figured out he didn't have a belt.