"Okay, um…" Kid Flash shifted against the colorless den wall, asking uncomfortably, "So… who is this kid and why does he look like he is having way too fun with the kitchen knives?"
Robin exhaled aloud beside him, pinching his thumb and index finger into the thin bridge of his nose.
"…Why weren't you paying attention to the briefing an hour ago?"
"It wasn't a mission briefing."
"And that's an excuse?"
Kid Flash shrugged his shoulders up to his ears, unbothered by irritated bite in Robin's voice but cringing outwardly when one of those twirling, razor-sharp knives lodged itself into the wooden carving board near M'gann's emerald-skinned elbow as she cheerfully and obliviously rolled up powdery dough into snake-like pieces on some cellophane and hummed a nameless tune to herself.
"I want to leave." The thirteen-year-old boy announced, tossing another knife aside. This time it embedded into the cabinet door above his head, its handle wobbling. "This place smells like ass."
"Oh…" M'gann murmured to no one particular, a pout tugging her lips. "The recipe said fresh pork …"
He drawled, eyeing her disdainfully through his unique-looking green mask, "Are you a servant?"
"No," she replied, smiling momentarily at him before returning to her open, stained book.
"Then why are you cooking?"
"I enjoy it."
"Tt—… this place's definition of 'fun' is retarded."
Kid Flash resisted the urge to roll his eyes at the grumpy-faced boy lounging in the kitchen.
"But no really, dude… who is he?"
"He's… Robin. A Robin from another universe." At the surprised glance, Robin added with some doubt, "He's claiming to be Batman's son. He says that he was with… well, me from the another universe and there was some sort of mad scientist and a screwy teleportation box that Batman and I still aren't clear on because he refuses to explain it and something boomed and…" He gestured. "Here he is."
"So when can he leave?" Kid Flash's frown deepened as another knife was flung dangerously in the air.
"Batman is investigating a way to return him. He wanted Damian here so he couldn't cause trouble."
"Damian?" The speedster made a face. "He has a name?"
Robin insisted, giving him a masked side-glance, "That's what he calls himself—"
"—Since both you and Father refuse to refer to me to my proper title, which you insist upon using…" Damian interrupted him, shuffling over to face them both, folding his arms carefully and huffily underneath his gray and yellow paracape. He observed with a sneer, "My, don't you both look cozy."
For a brief moment, Kid Flash's freckles darkened.
"What's that suppos—?"
"You need to put the knives back into the cutlery drawer," Robin said sternly. "People eat with those."
Damian's fingers fanned the two remaining knives with ease.
"Spar me for them." He leaned into Robin's space a little, lowering his voice, "…I want to know if you are good as Grayson."
Robin told him darkly, sensing his mocking nature, "Batman told you not to use that name outside the Cave."
"Then teach me a lesson, pretender." Damian made a grunt, as if the very chances of that were miniscule, leaning away and eyeing him through his mask unimpressed before heading for the corridor.
Kid Flash grabbed his arm as Robin followed after, green eyes widening in shock, "You aren't really…"
"Relax, KF." Though his voice was steady, it began to ice over, "It's only sparring."
The training simulator lit up fluorescent-white beneath their feet.
"Here are the ground rules. Training knowledge only. No gadgets. No weapons." Robin emphasized, undoing his utility belt, "No knives."
The other boy smirked haughtily, undoing his hooded cape and discarding everything else along with his own belt. "Do not underestimate my combat proficiencies. I can still beat you."
"Prepare to be overwhelmed."
"And here in this reality, I expected you to be less of a wordy imbecile."
"Your lack of faith is… turbing." Damian's expression grew displeased as Robin twisted up his mouth bemused and muttered, shaking his head, "No, no… that wasn't right. That wasn't right at all."
"…Just shut the hell up and fight me already."
The speedster perked up from his sulking fit, straightening from the den wall at the sound of M'gann's voice, grinning with a mouthful of chocolate bar. "Whuuutccchzzeeeeeddd?"
"How important is the expiration date to pork?"
His grin faded. Kid Flash swallowed the now bitter and disgustingly thick contents in his mouth. "Hey, um, I think I'm gonna check on Rob. We'll… have this conversation another time, beautiful." He sped out into the hallway without waiting for an answer and nearly threw himself into a nearby wall when he spotted Damian, Robin, and a very not happy Batman talking out in the corridor. Oh man.
"—what is clearly needed here is an attitude adjustment," came Batman's growl of a voice.
Kid Flash tensed up. Oh… jeez. They both got caught. 'Way to go, Rob.'
He settled down on the floor to listen. Damian's voice rose calmly, "Father, we were merely sparring…"
"That's not what it looked like."
"Be quiet." Robin made a small, obedient noise. "Damian, your utility belt will be confiscated until you can prove to me that are not a menace to others and that you can practice restraint. Understand?"
"Robin, can I trust you to act more civilly from here on out?"
"Given that I raised you both for several years under my rules, regardless of version or reality; I expect better behavior. Do not disappoint me again."
Kid Flash sank further to his hiding space.
Robin's gut felt like a miserable weight as Batman stormed the hallway and probably towards the exit of Mount Justice. His face lifted from staring intensely at the floor and he started walking away.
"We're not finished," Damian protested after a moment, blocking him and seemingly unaffected by the lecture.
Robin snapped, "Believe me, we are." His fists began shaking. "You are… insane, did you know that? I could have popped your arm out of your socket back there. What were you even thinking then?"
"One must use whatever means to break an opponent's hold on them." The other boy raised an eyebrow coolly, superiorly. "What, are you simple?"
Damian's teeth clenched at the insult. "Fuck you."
"Wow." Robin stifled a cackling laugh but it was without feeling, without any happiness. "Just… wow. I must be a saint where you are from. Do I have a statue there? I think I should have a big statue."
"You were certainly more befitting to your position than you ever would be here."
When Robin jostled him aside to pass him, he felt the other, stronger boy force him against the wall, trapping both of his wrists into one of his hands and above his head. Robin's spine arched up at the feel. "Stop struggling, dammit…" Damian swore quietly, avoiding an excellent kick in the shin, "My intention isn't to hurt you."
Uniformed chest heaving wildly, Robin allowed himself to play 'victim' long enough to hear the explanation.
He narrowed his eyes behind his mask as the other boy spoke up seriously, "It actually annoys me how similar you both are… you still hold yourself the same way, as if your worth means little to you and to everyone else around you… you still crack jokes under the most inopportune conditions and you insist upon flirting with everything that has a clean, white smile and a prink…"
Damian's stubby, calloused fingers cradled up his chin. Robin sucked in a hurried, noiseless breath as his green, gloved thumb pushed down the soft angle of Robin's lower lip in a long stroke, "It doesn't matter what universe you are in, Grayson. You are still mine."
Without ceremony, or much grace to the action, Damian's greedy lips replaced his thumb.
They were rigid and chapped and flush against the line of Robin's mouth. When Robin managed to turn his head escape him, gasping, Damian's fingers seizing his chin forced him back, and he redoubled his efforts to kiss him. "Sto-" Robin found himself silenced with the poke of a tongue attempting to jam past the barrier of his teeth. Instinctively, he bit down, and Damian clamped down in response onto his upper lip. HARD.
Something hot and foreign shot through into Robin's groin and the skin on his thighs burned and he let out a confused moan as Damian instead explored the expansion of vulnerable skin on his neck with his open, wet mouth. "Please…" Robin begged, panting heavily, fingers straining into themselves and clawing into his own skin as the other boy pressed the flat of his teeth to his collar, "…y-you…."
"—shit!" A faint thud. A blur of yellowish and orange vanishing out of the hallway.
Robin's heart sank along into his gut.
Everyone had turned in for the day. Somewhere two levels up, Damian was probably sleeping in an extra room. Or training.
He seemed like someone who would train instead of getting a night's rest.
Underneath his soft blue sheet on his cot, Robin's head poked like the top of a tent. Underneath the sheet, he wrapped his arms around his knees pressed to his chest. The keypad from outside his room beep-beep-booped. Narrowing down his list of two people he trusted with the security number to his room, Robin guessed correctly to who would show at this time of night as the edge of the sheet was lifted and Kid Flash poked his head in curiously.
"Hey…" he greeted with a half-smile, climbing under with him with a lit flashlight.
"Hey…" Robin greeted back, setting his chin on his knees sullenly as the pajama-clad speedster tented the sheet further with his height difference, his orange bangs touching flat to his forehead.
"Can't sleep either?"
At that, the younger boy shook his head a little, refusing to glance up. Refused to know how he was looking at him. Robin picked at a thread on his own long, suede-feel pajama pant leg absently.
Robin's stomach leaped. 'Oh no.'
"Are you…" Kid Flash rubbed the back of his neck awkwardly, summoning the courage to go on. "He didn't hurt you or nothin', right?"
"Naw, man. I'm…" The eyes of Robin's mask slit with confirmed apprehension. "You were there, weren't you?"
"When Batman started talking about 'attitude adjustments'."
"Do you… hate me?"
"No!" Kid Flash insisted, scooting closer on the mattress. "Will you just…?" he grumbled, his freckled hands clasping Robin's shoulders lightly. "You didn't want it… did you?"
"This… kind of stuff is new to me," Robin admitted, "…I don't know."
The hold on his shoulders squeezed for a moment but it didn't hurt. "Why?" He questioned, staring up puzzled, "Wally, are you…"
Kid Flash let him go, blinking. "Wh-…dude, no, that would make me… gay or something." Even with such little light in the bedroom and under the sheet, there was no mistaking how flustered he was. Biting back a grin, Robin flopped himself down in the other boy's lap, settling his head in the space where his legs folded, and pointed up the bright flashlight. Right into his goofy, freckled face.
"Dude…!" The fifteen-year-old complained, shielding his eyes.
"There are a lot of orientations," The acrobat recited perceptively, not moving from his comfy spot with his head cradled, "Falling in love with a guy when you are one doesn't exactly make you gay."
"You're gonna freakin' blind me, cut it out…!"
Robin grinned upside down. "Then admit that you've been harboring a secret crush on me for two years…"
"What!" Kid Flash's freckles darkened again.
With a giggle, Robin began flipping the on and off switch on the flashlight up at him and Wally grinned back, shouting and crawling over him and wrestling him for the object. During their roughhousing, something knocked over on the nearby dresser that crashed loudly and someone may have lost a button for good but Robin couldn't say he cared for consequences as Kid Flash's arm draped across his back possessively, as Robin's cheek rested into the softly rising chest underneath him when he finally fell asleep exhausted.
"A closing wormhole to your reality?"
"Did I stutter, Grayson?" Damian scoffed, pushing up his gray hood. "You are slowing me down. Father is waiting." Robin watched him hesitate, a foot posed ahead, before speaking up, "I was… exceedingly… forward the other day…" He cleared his throat gruffly. "My objective was not to-… You reminded me of the other…"
Robin tried to switch the tone of the… sort of apology. "Does that mean that there… um… Are we…?"
"Ttch. We're brothers," Damian glowered, muttering with a bitter note barely concealed.
The other boy turned an astonished, nasty red.
Damian said decisively, "I suppose you can… be at ease now under the assumption that you will no longer be accosted in hallways by transdimensional visitors."
"…" Robin cocked an eyebrow at him behind his heavily tinted shades, smirking. "…did you just make a joke?"
"…If you ever tell anyone, Grayson—I'll find you."
He slapped a hand over his mouth to keep back giggles as Damian sneered.
"I'll remember that."
Posed over the kitchen table, cross-eyed and with the tip of his pink tongue posed at the corner of his mouth, Kid Flash took a pair of tweezers to the multifaceted and mechanical remains of the team's broken M.O.N.Q.I from storage. He made a victorious noise when one of the arms glowed faintly, twitching its digits. As Robin soon joined him, he said inattentively, "The little jerk gone?"
"He was around my age, wasn't he?"
"Your point?" Kid Flash teased, snickering to himself.
He received a unexpected whack across the face with the creature's vividly glowing electric-green tail. "OW—The fu—!"
"Fingers slipped," Robin rationalized flatly, wriggling his posed over the circuit remote.
Kid Flash made a suspicious cough, leveling his magnification headgear back over his eyes and tweaking with another wire. "…Are you…upset about it or something?"
A muscle in Robin's jaw clenched at the hidden accusation. Was he…
Robin slammed his hands on the smooth, pewter-colored surface, rattling it with his surge of strength.
"You—" The redhead gawked at him fast approaching around the table with mounting dread.
"are—" He growled forebodingly, jerking the LED-light sourced eyepieces out of Kid Flash's face.
"so—" Robin's fingers dug into the fleecy fabric of Kid Flash's school sweatshirt, yanking him up out of his seat.
"I can't even find a prefix for you that's how bad it is—!"
"Shut up," Robin ordered him firmly, shortly.
With the space between his eyebrows wrinkled with concentration, he messily sandwiched their lips together, dragging a garbled noise from the other boy. What was he doing…? This wasn't what a first kiss between two people was like… not forced… like… And just as Robin was considering pulling away to run like hell and disappear into the Batcave for maybe twenty years… the heel of Kid Flash's palm came up to gently apply pressure into the space behind his Robin's ear.
An ecstatic moan against him — and the speedster slackened his fingers to lace them into locks of black.
Robin dropped him back into his seat with a plop when the kiss broke off, fixing his shades bumped about during their session. Kid Flash removed his headgear, parting and closing his lips. The acrobat resisted rolling his eyes. The one time where Speed Mouth didn't have a comeback…
"Next time, KF… own up."
An sheepish laugh. A thumbs up.
Gotham City, New Jersey
The return had been overshot by several miles from the building where they had found the faulty device that sent Damian to the other Gotham. Not that calculations were always perfect. A wave of post-dimension travel nausea washed over him and Damian held his trembling breath a moment, wiping his forehead as he waited patiently for it to pass. Note to self… a killer on the inner ear.
On his way down from the shipping dock's platform by the bay, he looked up to see Dick — the right version — sprinting towards him, the cape of the Batsuit fluttering behind him like a massive, raging dark cloud at his heels, that sheltered them both from wandering eyes as the man dropped down on Damian's level and pulled him into a wild, abandoned hug. "Damian! Oh thank god!"
Keeping his face composed from revealing emotions he may have been enduring, keeping his arms at his sides, Damian said pointedly, "Grayson, stop embarrassing yourself in public while in uniform."
"I was scared that you… " Dick blabbed on frantically, pulling away to hold the palms of his gauntlets against Damian's face, and he tilted forward to roughly kiss the center between Damian's lowered eyebrows. For a moment, just the briefest of moments, the boy savored that unabashed warmth directed towards him, that overly affectionate and rude gesture, before shoving Dick away offended.
"Are you under the impression that I cannot handle myself in an alternative reality without you?"
Dick's blue eyes exposed from the undone Bat cowl grew nonplussed as the younger dusted himself off primly. "I know you can, kiddo."
Damian stopped, prickling. That horrid pet name…
"Don't… " He said slowly, aloud, "Don't think that I will allow you to further condescend my position next to you… " Damian frowned intensely. "Did you not swear to me that we were equals?"
The man blinked, and then smiled reassuringly, chuckling. "You're right. You are my equal," he affirmed, slipping back on his cowl and preparing to stand, "I'm sorry, Damian, for—" Dick made a surprised, winded groan as Damian threw himself with a merciless amount of strength at him, wounding his arms around Dick's neck and burying his face deep into his Kevlar front. "—okay."
The smile returned brighter as Dick tucked an arm under his clinging charge, lifting him fully into his arms. "Let's go home and talk there. Are you hungry?"
A muffled grumble. Damian's green, armored fingertips dug into the nape of the Batsuit. "Not for Pennyworth's sorry excuse for professionally prepared cuisine."
"… … McDonalds it is."
Batman comics and Young Justice doesn't belong to me. I cannot take full credit for this idea with Damian showing up. My co-conspirator for this entire thing was Vladbride and I thank her with all my heart for guiding me through the outline process and creating some wonderful ideas and proofreading this for me. BWAHAHA YOU DIDN'T GET TO SEE THIS LAST SCENE. DEAL WITH IT. This is one of the longer oneshots I've been working on. XD It doesn't seem all that long but man... well I hope you had a good time reading and enjoyed the story. Comments fuel my brain. Like Butterfingers Snackerz. Yes. Nomnom.