As was usually the case, Bruce had been silently eating breakfast while Dick chattered nonstop to Alfred.

"You wouldn't believe this guy we saw last night," Dick bubbled. "He was dressed in regular clothes and everything, but he had these weird metal things stuck in his ears and his nose."

Dick took a breath for a bite of food before making a face and continuing. "It was really yucky to look at. I bet he was a bad guy we'll have to bust someday."

"Master Dick," Alfred replied, "You cannot assume too much about a man simply by his, ahh, taste in fashion."

"I bet Bruce never did anything like that, though, did he?" asked Dick.

Before Bruce could chime in, Alfred said, "Actually, you might be surprised to know that, when he was much younger, Master Bruce did have his nose pierced at one time."

"No way!" Dick exclaimed, wide eyes looking toward his guardian, who was shifting uncomfortable in his chair and shooting dark looks at Alfred.

"It was a long time ago," he finally said. "I didn't really plan on it, I didn't like it, and I let it grow back in a very short time."

He shook off the embarrassed look on his face and said, "Let's change the subject. Suppose you go ahead and meet me downstairs for a quick workout."

"Okay," said Dick, downing the last of his milk before running off to the cave's secret entrance.

Bruce waited for him to leave before turning back to Alfred, who was busily clearing the dishes from the table.

"I thought we had a deal," he said quizzically.

"Indeed we do, sir," replied Alfred. "I promised I would not tell your parents what had happened when they returned from the medical convention, and in return, you promised to never again play with your father's staple gun." He paused for a moment before adding, "I didn't say the subject would never come up again, however."