I SWEAR I'M DOING PRODUCTIVE THINGS LIKE WORKING ON UPDATES. Just. You know. Ideas come up, you see. This here is part of "Robins and Sleepovers" girldfriends!verse. So. ENJOY THIS? PLEASE? :D
Tim hates the fact that he gets stuck in messes like these. Especially since his shoulders are starting to ache. In a couple more hours, it is likely that his shoulders may pop from their sockets. Hanging by one's wrists on a meat hook is a pretty efficient way of disabling a person's arms, Tim has come to find.
He would try trash-talking (he has learned a lot from Jason, after all) but there is a scarf tied around, and stuffed into, his mouth. Jason will feel awful if something happens to him while he's out of town (with Kory and Roy. He tries not to feel jealous). Tim tugs on the duct tape that binds his wrists, trying to tear it on the meat hook, but that just doesn't seem like it's going to happen. Which is unfortunate.
Because the Riddler won't shut up. About himself. And how this plan is just dastardly and wonderful and neither Batman nor the Red Hood is going to be able to save him now, ohohohoho, etc., etc.
So it isn't really even the fact that his shoulders hurt, or that the gag is starting to get soggy and gross in him mouth. It's the Riddler. Who would want to die (or be maimed) at the hands of the Riddler? Not Tim. And if he gets seriously hurt by the Riddler, of all people, Damian will never, ever let him hear the end of it. Tim can hear that in his head, and combined with the Riddler's taunting, a headache blooms behind his eyes, stretching toward his temples and around the back of his skull.
Combine these things with the fact that he was captured as Red Robin, well, Tim already feels humiliated enough. He would tell the Riddler so, if he could make more than 'mmmphh' sounds.
Tim sighs and tries to adjust his weight and little on the meat hook. He stretches his toes toward the ground, a meter and a half below him, but that does help, just pulls on his shoulders more.
(What is Tim, anyway? The Damsel of the Batfamily? Because he does get into these situations a lot. Like when he was about to get raped while fighting the League of Assassins. Bad memories.)
The ground starts to rumble ominously.
Great, Tim thinks miserably, I'm going to die of an earthquake in an East Coast city because I was captured by the Riddler.
But at least he has stopped talking.
Green suddenly floods his vision (it makes him flinch because he has been starting at the Riddler's suit for far too long) as strong, thick vines grab and hold the Riddler tightly. He can feel the tape being cut at his wrists, slowly dropping him centimeters at a time until he drops the rest of the way, landing on his feet. Harley Quinn is twirling the Riddler's staff and smiling. Her outfit has changed and she doesn't seem to be wearing her excessive makeup. It's a nice change.
"Seems to me like you've been a bad boy, Eddie," she chuckles and leans on his question-staff.
Selina drops from the meat hook, placing her hands on her hips, eyebrow raised at him.
Finally, Pamela steps out of the shadows, anger crossing her features. All three woman stand in a row, Pamela with her hip cocked out, Harley leaning on the staff, and Selina with her arms crossed.
And Jason had been worried about Tim's new friends (in fact, he's been enraged about Harley. At least until he found out that Harley would be willing to go out and beat the Joker close to death sometime. It endeared her to him). Now he just thinks Tim's sort of gusty, befriending the Gotham City Sirens.
Never before has he been quite so grateful for friends.
"You do not touch our friend," Pamela says, and the vines squeeze tighter. The Riddler looks baffled, then incredulous.
"Your friend, did you say?"
"I thought you were s'posed to be the smartest man alive, Eddie. Are you gonna make the lady repeat herself?" Harley asks. Catwoman just watches.
"No, I heard quite clearly. I was just making sure that I heard correctly, is all."
Selina's claws slide out of their gloved sheaths and she presses them to the Riddler's chin.
"So, then, we are clear that you do not touch our bird, yes?" Tim flushes, rubbing at his wrists, moving to join them in line. Harley drapes the arm she isn't leaning on across Tim's shoulders. Selina moves to ruffle his hair (the cowl just was not working for him, he has to admit).
"Yes," the Riddler swallows, trying not to break his skin on Selina's claws. "We are crystal clear."
"Good," she says, her voice silky. "We'll just leave you here until Batman comes to get you. Tell him Catwoman says hello, would you?" And the three of them guide Tim out of the smelly butchery (and Tim is sure there is some clever riddle to lead the Batman here), fretting over him and making sure his shoulders are, in fact, in their sockets.
"I'm fine," Tim assures, smiling. "But if you're not too busy, do you guys want to come by my apartment and have dinner or something? You guys did just save me some humiliation back there." The answer, of course, is a unanimous yes.
Tim thinks that it is a good thing that he has allotted so much girl time. At least they won't make fun of the fact that he can cook.