Tonight Feels Brand New

It usually takes a lot to impress him, but Zatanna? Consider him very impressed.

Dick pretty much knew upon seeing her that she was going to be great albeit temporary addition to the Team. And it's not just because she's kind of crazy beautiful in a mysterious sort of way with her bright blue eyes and dark hair. Zatara is an amazingly talented magician whose powers he hasn't even seen to their fullest and she's his daughter, so one would assume she wouldn't disappoint.

And she didn't.

She kicked ass with them without having to be told a game plan. Not that they usually have game plans (ones that they fully stick to or don't get seriously compromised after two seconds, anyway), but it's pretty cool how instantly she clicked with them.

She even does his word-thing. That's like, bonus points.

"You're staring."

He looks over his shoulder at Wally as they're walking back to the bioship. He looks completely smug.

"Aren't you supposed to be all discreet and whatnot? I mean, I'd assume that's like, one of the first things Bats teaches."

Dick rolls his eyes. "Like you're one to talk! You're as subtle as a train wreck pretty much all the time but especially when it comes to women."

"Hey! Last I checked," Wally drops his voice, "I was the one with better game."

"And when did you get that misconception into your head?" Dick laughs. "You're the one who flirts a lot more and gets rejected. I, on the other hand, actually have standards."

"Yeah, ones that Zatanna has totally checked out," Wally says, and earns the satisfaction of making the Boy Wonder glare at him and shush him despite the fact the others are walking ahead. "Oh man. You're totally into her. I've never seen you like this before."

"Well, I see you like this all the time," Dick shrugs. "And I have to start hanging out with Kaldur more."

"Wait, why?"

"So I don't start picking up your idiotic habits. I started to sound like you when I was talking to her, and that's not okay."

Wally scoffs. "Dude!" Then he thinks for a minute. "Wait, why did you say that you see me lovesick all the time?"

"You're totally into Artemis and probably don't even realize it, until now. Oh, don't give me that look." Dick looks at his friend and then at Artemis, who is chatting with Zatanna. "You get that dopey look on your face whenever you two aren't arguing and you totally get protective of her. Don't think I can't see you trying to be everywhere at once for her during missions."

For a few seconds, Dick can say that he stunned his best friend into complete silence. Bruce would be proud.

"Never speak of this to any of them," Wally mutters after a minute or two, and Dick laughs, shakes his head, and takes his seat behind Zatanna.

... ...

It's taking forever for her dad to calm down enough to get some color back into his cheeks. She's not even joking, because they've been back for like, forty minutes and they're nowhere near leaving the Cave. Pretty ironic considering he's going on and on about how she's banned from ever coming back.

Her dad is so melodramatic.

And the thing is that she came here not really expecting much. She knew why they were visiting, but she knows her dad and the possibility of him letting her actually join the Team was slim. Now she ended up loving it a lot more than she imagined because their dynamic was strange but worked, and they're kind of hilarious. It'd be kind of awesome to get to join them and be a part of that.

It sucks that her dad is going to like, lock her in their basement before that happens.

Black Canary looks like she's conflicted between being frustrated with them or with her dad, and Zatanna just stands there feeling a tad bit embarrassed.

She hasn't even switched back to her civvies because she's kind of terrified her dad will lose it if she uses more magic, and considering they just finished the repairs to the Cave, the League won't be all too thrilled when the place goes up in flames or explodes a little. He's usually very, very good about controlling his emotional tie to his magic, but she thinks she saw a little lightning a few seconds ago.

"Giovanni," Dinah says, "It's not like the kids won't be punished. But as the Den Mother for the week, I want their respective mentors to be in charge of the details."

Which means I'm still grounded for life, Zatanna thinks bitterly to herself.

"We should—"

"Continue this talk somewhere more private," she interrupts, voice more forceful this time. "Disobedience or not, the kids are exhausted and need to at least change and rest themselves."

Zatanna meets her father's eyes and kind of winces from the intensity behind them, but sees just a fraction of that dissolve upon seeing her condition. She isn't a wreck, but she can't imagine that any of them looked all that great after tonight.

"Fine," he grumbles.

Dinah kind of exhales a little and looks at them expectantly. "Behave," is all she says, but yeah, they're not going to disobey that tone of voice.

... ...

He slides onto the stool at the kitchen island beside her and she looks up, startled, and shakes her head as she laughs quietly. "Didn't you guys just leave to change?"

"You're not the only master at quick costume changes," Dick tells her, because it's true, and the smile she flashes tells him she kind of knew that already. "Although I'm willing to admit that yours are a lot cooler than mine. I… that sounded really Wally again, didn't it?"

"Really, I don't mind."

(He's not going to lie, but her tone and smile when she said that…)

"Your dad looked like he was about to light the place on fire or something," he admits, and she laughs a little harder.

"No kidding." She tucks some of her hair behind her ear and looks at him. "You know the chances of me joining the Team after tonight are practically nonexistent, right?"

Yeah, he kind of figured that, but he's a little more preoccupied with the fact that she actually looks really bummed out about it. He's pretty disappointed, too. Her dad is still going totally ballistic on Dinah (they can hear it from across the Cave) and he's willing to bet that he's going to put in an insane amount of extra effort to keep her away from them.

"Might as well make the most of what time you have left here," Dick tells her.

"And do what?" She looks doubtful, but a tone in her voice sounds like she's going to follow him, anyway.

"How about that tour?"

... ...

The place is actually very big. And nice.

Not that she was under the impression that it was small (the League hallowed out a mountain to build this thing) or that it would be unimpressive, but still. Getting a tour of the entire place just throws it above and beyond whatever expectations she had. Everything is state-of-the-art and it seems like there are hundreds of rooms. She could really get used to being here.

"And this would be the library," Robin announces, pushing open the door. "Wally probably doesn't even know it exists."

She laughs and steps in.

"It's probably bigger than my house." She runs her fingers along the spines of the books on a nearby shelf and looks around. "This place is kind of amazing."

He must know she's talking about the whole Cave and not just the library, because he chuckles and says, "Yeah, living here is pretty sweet. Of course, I don't live here most the time."

"Where do you live?" He makes this face and rubs the heel of his hand over his neck. "Oh, right. Sorry. I forgot that you're a Bat."

"Technically I'm a bird."

She laughs. "Well, thanks for giving me a tour. It sucks that I probably won't be back here for a while."

"I wouldn't be convinced of that just yet." She looks at him and there's this smirk on his face. "Bats can be very convincing."

She shakes her head, smiling. She could only imagine what he means by that. "Well, if you could perform that miracle then you'd be the ultimate magician," she tells him, meaning it. It's going to take a lot to get her dad to budge.

"I can fight pretty hard when I really want something."

Her cheeks warm up a little and she feels those weird butterflies she's been getting all night. Other than the obvious flirting (which she's not at all discouraging), Robin is actually very sweet.

He got this smile on his face at her weird wordplay like she just said the most amazing thing ever, and he was hovering near her the entire mission. It wasn't in that creepy way either or that he was trying to be the hero, because it didn't feel like he was underestimating her. It just felt like he was genuinely worried.

Slowly, she lifts her hand and reaches for him, and he doesn't seem to move a muscle.

"Considering all of the trouble," she says in this kind of whisper, pushing her fingers through his hair, "Tonight was one of my favorite nights ever."


She is looking straight into the white of his mask and really wants to know what color his eyes are, and if he's staring back.

"Yeah." Her thumb slides over the edge of his mask and rests there for a minute. He's still not moving, and she wonders if he'd stop her from trying to take it off. "A girl needs excitement in her life."

She slips her fingers towards his mask and this time he does move, placing his hand over hers to keep it in place. "Not yet," he says, and she's not going to lie and say she isn't a little disappointed. But he said yet and gives her this smile and that's good enough for her to want to stick around to see where this is will take them. She can fight pretty hard for something she wants, too.

... ...

Black Canary calls them over when Giovanni is apparently calm (enough) and ready to leave, and he wonders if Zatanna is walking closer to him and at this extremely slow pace on their way back on purpose or if he's just imagining it.

She actually hugs each of them goodbye, and it really sucks that she's leaving.

He squeezes just a little tighter during their hug, but he also feels her reluctant to let go, so that must be a good thing. When she finally does pull back though, she has this smile on her face and is still standing close enough for him to count every one of her feathery eyelashes and see that her eyes are two different shades of blue together. He wonders if she can feel his heart pounding.

"Well, it's been enchanting, Robin," she says, and he laughs.

"Indeed it has."

She looks hesitant for a moment, looking around at the others before declaring, "Well, if I'm already in trouble…" and pressing her lips to his.

Giovanni is pulling her away barely a second later, and even though he hears her father beginning to ramble again and everyone else reacting behind him, all he sees is her hair falling over her shoulders as she giggles and winks at him, and he still feels her hand against his cheek and her kiss even as she disappears through the transporter.

Tonight is one of his favorite nights, too.


I was honestly expecting them to take a Kaldur/Zatanna route (sorcery and magic and all), and I still want Dick/Babs on the show, but I ship Dick/YJ!Zatanna now too and needed to write something after the new episode. I absolutely love Zatanna and this version of her, and I'm really hoping she'll be officially joining the Team or at least appearing in more episodes again soon.

My only digress is the lack of Wally/Artemis and the fact that they didn't put in Wally teasing Dick about his crush or something, which is why it's in here (:

So you read it. Love it? Hate it? Please review it!