There was an echo here. Not that he knew where here he was. It was comfortable though.

It echoed again, just now and again like a metronome. It was a soft beeping. Every few seconds, the high blip would nudge him into consciousness, bit by bit. He didn't need to open his eyes to know he was in the infirmary and hooked up to a heart monitor.

Robin opened his eyes languidly, although a part of him felt he should be moving with more urgency. He couldn't remember why though. Above his head, he saw the metal plated ceiling and low lights from where he lay on a white-sheeted bed. He was right; infirmary it was. Well, he certainly ached enough to warrant a visit here.

Glancing about with bleary eyes, Robin saw a completely human Batman sitting in a chair near his bed. He was leaned forward, elbows on his knees, head in his hands. The man looked tired. He probably hadn't slept again. Then Robin remembered.

"Bruce!" the boy all but yelled, all signs of sleep gone. The billionaire's head jerked up to meet the wild gaze of his ward. Dick sat up, ignoring the slight vertigo the movement caused, and looked about the room again. The sudden motion made the multiple IVs he was hooked up to twist and bite into his skin, but he hardly noticed the discomfort.

"Where is she? Did you see her face? How are you human again? That was so cool how you did that!" Dick spoke rapid fire, almost fast enough to make a Flash jealous.

With the cowl pushed back, it allowed Dick full view of Bruce's look of mild concern. The man merely shook his head once, saying,

"The hallucinogens are taking longer to wear off than I thought."

"What? Oh, yeah. Cheshire coats her weapons with poisons," Robin muttered absently. "So where is she? You didn't eat her, did you?"

After staring at the teen and reminding himself that the boy was drugged, he briefly touched the his shoulder.

"Cheshire was never here," he responded, standing and walking towards the machines Robin was hooked up to.

He said that as if that'd explain everything. Sometimes, Robin wondered if the man did that because he expected everyone to play detective all of the time, or he just forgot everyone didn't. Or if he was just a bastard like that.

"But…she was. I fought her. She came here to kill me and used her mask to track me to the Batcave – by the way, we should look into infrared tech for our masks. Then my Robin uniform was alive! And she kept pulling all these ninja stars out of everywhere! I mean, I don't know just where she could have possibly hidden them all. Her kimono's so –"


One word, laced with the slightest irritation and worry, shut down his rambling.

"Do you remember fighting Crane?" Batman asked.

Robin nodded, feeling wariness rise.

"After you broke his nose," Robin couldn't help but smirk a little bit, "his mask let out a cloud of his nerve toxin. The kind that he used on the hostages and the one he stored in his mask were two different types. You breathed it in then passed out. You've been unconscious fifty-seven hours."

He stared at his mentor in disbelief before objecting with an articulate,

"What the f – "

Bruce sent his charge a hard glare, changing his mind about his choice of words.

"F- feathered…bikini…?" he finished lamely then frowned, "So it was all a dream?"

It'd seemed so real though. He could still feel her boot print on his backside. A hand went to his throat, feeling smooth, unwounded skin.

"A drug-induced, nerve-targeting hallucination would be more apt. You actually got up and started messing with the computer's security system."

He snapped his fingers.

"Speaking of that, we need to make some serious changes. I was thinking about –"

"Resting," Bruce cut in.

No fair! Foul! Birdy!

Slow. Your. Roll.

"You just said I've been out two days!"

"Unconscious and feverish from a near fatal drug-overdose is not resting."

Robin crossed his arms over his bare-chest, glanced down, and realized he was still in his uniform pants. With his gaze still downward, and effectively pouting, he asked,

"Near fatal?"

"Your vitals skyrocketed almost constantly. The gas Crane used was a different chemical from what he'd used previously, and a new counter-toxin had to me made. You fought through, and you still need to rest from it."

Robin just refrained from rolling his eyes. He needed to sleep, okay, he got it the first time.

"Can I at least sleep in my room?"

"I'll take you up in a minute," Bruce said, already walking towards the door.

"But I d–"

Another of those looks. Something between 'Don't-test-me-because-I-will-sedate-you' and 'Go-ahead-make-my-day'. Robin glared a moment with a look that said 'When-you're-old-and-decrepit-I'm-totally-going-to-remember-this' and flopped back on the bed petulantly. Then he hid the wince from the pain that had caused.

Bruce continued to walk out and didn't breathe a sigh of relief until the door closed behind him. Dick waited until Bruce's foots-steps had faded before murmuring low,

"Mother hen."

In little time, the boy's eyes had closed, only to rest them, he told himself. His mind went over the attack, the one that didn't happen. Even now, with Bruce's assurance, it was hard to believe. It'd felt so real.

Soon, he found his mind floating in between that state of waking and sleeping and led his body take him whichever way it willed. Just before he was completely gone, a faint odor crept through his senses.

Faintly, he thought it might be coconut.



As far as the challenge goes, I give myself a C, but then I don't like looking at that letter without my name following it or a B because it makes me feel inadequate so I'll up it to an A- and because that's just stupid so I might as well put A+! Yay me! (I kid;)