A/N: Hi everyone! This is a story about how Dick Became Robin and how he became the Dick Grayson we know and love today.
My continuity will be a bit AU, but only because i've bumped back the timeline a few years for added cutness. So here is a series of oneshots- glimpses if you will- into Dick and Bruce's life on their journey to Dick becoming Bruce's son.
This series will be a couple chapters long so I hope you'll thoroughly enjoy it!
The first chapter IS the same as from my story "Of Flying Robins". However everything else will be new!
Disclaimer: I don't own anything
"Cât de mult mai mult timp?" How much longer? Dick asked eagerly. Little Dick Grayson bounced from foot to foot, his eyes never leaving the clock.
"Cinci minute mai mult." His father chuckled. Five more minutes
The five year olds eyes met his. "De ce nu putem merge în acum?" Why can't we go in now?
"Acest lucru va ruina surpriza." That will ruin the surprise.
"Dar Tata," Dick groaned. "Ştiu deja sale o petrecere surpriza. O faci în fiecare an!" But daddy, I already know it's a surprise party. You do it every year!
"Maybe this year we're surprising you by not having the party." John Grayson teased.
The boy paused for a second. His eyes widened at the mention. He didn't want that to happen! His father chuckled softly and ruffed his hair. He leaned down to whisper in his ear. "It is a surprise party." Dick's smile grew widely and he nodded eagerly. John smiled again. "Remember to speak English, ok buddy?"
"Ok." Dick agreed. He didn't really like English. It was hard to speak. But only his family and Mr. Haley spoke any Romanian.
"Ready?" John asked. Dick nodded eagerly, already imagining his mother's freshly baked chocolate cake and the stack of presents. Maybe this year his mother would even let him learn to swallow fire like he'd been begging to learn. After all, he was turning six. He wasn't a little boy anymore.
John parted the tent flaps and they walked in.
Gotham City Fair Grounds
"Putem mergergepracticaacum? Practica" Dick demanded, bouncing up in down at his seat at their family's table. "Practica!" Can we go to practice now?
"Aşteptaţi un moment Dickey, nu am terminat de mâncat încă."His father said lightly, still chewing his bagel. Wait a moment, Dickey. We haven't finished eating yet.
"English, Dickey." His mother corrected gently. Although their first language was Romanian, the three had learned to speak English. Well, John and Mary had learned English. They'd been rather lenient with Dick. They wanted him to learn it better though now that he was growing older. When they talked with the crowds and guests and did interviews it was always helpful to speak the same language as them.
"Finish eating so we go practice!" Dick exclaimed in English. He tumbled under the table and did a handstand, waiting impatiently. "You said we could go early today before anyone else was there. You said we'd work on my triple flip!"
John Grayson chuckled. "Ok. How about you go ahead first and get into your costume. We'll follow in a few minutes."
Dick gave a squeal of delight and took off. His parents hurried from their trailer, watching as their tiny son bounded across the field towards the big top which had been put up in Gotham.
"Aşteptaţi până când vom ajunge acolo înainte de a vă urca pe trapez." John called after him. Wait until we're there before you go on the trapeze!
"Voi tata!" Dick called over his shoulder. I will, daddy!
John turned to his wife with a sigh. "I swear, Mary, the only way we'll keep him close is with a leash."
Dick was excited for tonight's performance. Not that tonight was going to be any different. He was always excited for their performances. He couldn't wait to fly through the air. It was the best feeling in the world.
What was that song the lion tamer was trying to teach him? "He floats through the air with the greatest of ease." Dick started singing, struggling with the English words. "The man on the flying, the flying trapeze." Dick forgot the next lines so he continued repating the same two lines over and over again.
He walked into the show room to put on his costume. The green outfit with a little red tunic had the letter "r" on his chest, for his name Richard. Once he was ready, he rushed out.
Richard glanced around the big tent, looking for the ringmaster. Mr. Haley should be here. If he was then he could start the music for him. That way, once his parents finally arrived, they wouldn't have any excuse for delaying their practice.
"The man on the flying, the flying trapeze." Dick sang softly. He wished he remembered the next words to the song. "The flying trapeze." He kept singing the line over and over again as he went in search of Mr. Haley.
His singing abruptly cut off when he heard voices. "-be a shame if anything would happen to them." The voice he heard wasn't on he recognized. It was deep and almost a growl, the words garbled.
Dick crept forward, seeing Mr. Haley talking with a man he didn't recognize. The man was tall and thin. His hair was slicked back and he had on a gold chain. He was chewing a toothpick in his mouth and had on an expensive looking suit.
Mr. Haley was red in the face, angry. "We don't need your kind of help, Zucco."
"Zucco?" Dick repeated the word. It wasn't an English word he recognized.
"Ah, but trust me, you do need Tony Zucco's protection." The man in the expensive suit said. Dick shivered at his tone. He sounded oily.
"We don't need protection." Mr. Haley snarled. Dick had never seen him so angry.
Suddenly Zucco's eyes fell on Dick. He said something that Dick didn't understand, but the man was waving him forward, a gesture that the six year old knew well. He hurried out from his hiding spot to Mr. Haley's side.
The ring master paled and he quickly pulled Dick up into his arms. He placed his hand over top of Dick's head protectively, making the other man chuckle.
"See? You do care for him. You wouldn't want anything to happen to the Flying Graysons, now would you?"
Dick frowned, trying to figure out the meaning behind the words.
"Nothing will, now get out of here before I call the police." Mr. Haley growled.
Police. That was a word Dick understood. He snuggled closer to Mr. Haley, suddenly worried. The police only were called in if something bad happened. That must mean this person- this Tony Zucco, was bad.
"Fine. You don't want my protection? It'll be your loss." The man laughed and soon was gone.
"Who was that?" Dick asked softly, staring up at Mr. Haley. "What was he saying?"
Mr. Haley still looked pale, but he gave Dick a smile. "Hey, don't worry about it, kiddo. He was just trying to scare us."
"Scary." Dick agreed.
The ringmaster forced another smile. "Were you going to practice, Dickey? Here… I'll start the music for you."
It was hours before the actual performance. Dick couldn't wait though. The performance was the best part of the whole evening! His family was decked out in their new costumes. Fireworks filled the sky. People poured into the tent. They filled the stands, watching simple acts by the performers, or staring in wonder at the animals that were waiting around.
The Flying Graysons were standing by the entrance smiling and waving at people. When a family would come up they'd autograph their programs, maybe take a picture with them as well. Dick was excited for tonight's performance. His father and mother had worked with him and this time he just knew he'd get that flip down perfectly!
"This way, Mr. Wayne." Mr. Haley's voice rang out. Dick looked up, interested. Mr. Haley hardly ever was out before the performance. Usually he was making sure everything was ok back stage. "Mr. Wayne, I'd like to introduce you to our star performers: The Flying Graysons!"
Dick smiled up at the man. He was big with big muscles and tanned skin. His hair was slicked back too and his suit looked extremely expensive. There was a lady with red hair and a thin white dress beside him, hanging onto his arm.
"Pleased to meet you." The man said with a performer's smile. His eyes landed on Dick. The boy waved at him, his eyes glowing in excitement. "I'm eager to see your performance. I hear it's the best around."
"It is!" Dick piped up happily.
Mr. Wayne laughed. "I'll hold you to that." He said with a smile.
"Brucie, let's get a picture." The lady on his arm said. She handed Mr. Haley a camera and he took their photo together. Dick grinned widely.
"There you are, miss." Mr. Haley said. "Now, Mr. Wayne, let me escort you to your seat. The show will be starting soon."
"We should go get ready." John Grayson said. He swung Dick onto his shoulders and they walked back, ready for their performance.
It seemed forever before the words Dick had been waiting to hear came. "Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, children of all ages… I present to you the Fearless Flying Graysons!"
Dick squealed in delight. Across from him on the other platform a spotlight fell on his parents. They were smiling and waving at the crowd.
"As always, the Flying Graysons are performing their daring feats without the safety of a net!"
The crowd went wild as John and Mary began just as the music started. His father jumped out onto the trapeze. When he swung back his wife swung after him, doing a flip high into the air. Their hands met and they swung backwards.
Now it was his turn.
"And now the youngest member of this amazing family… Richard Grayson! Little Richard is only six years old!" The rest of Mr. Haley's words were drowned out by the cheers from the crowd. Dick smiled widely as the spotlight fell on him. He waved at the crowd.
Then, hearing his cue, he jumped. His mother caught him as always. Now their real performance could begin.
Dick always found that being on the trapeze was the best part of the day for him. It was the happiest he'd ever been. He soared through the air; he flipped; he turned. He loved hearing the cries from the crowd, the startled gasps, and most importantly: the applause.
All too soon his parents deposited him back on the platform. They didn't want him in the final act yet, it was too dangerous for him. Dick smiled back at them though as they leapt off for the final part. He watched, enthralled.
Suddenly a sound started to break its way into his thoughts. It was a rattling sound. Dick looked up above him and gave a cry. The wires were trembling.
"Get off!" He shouted at his parents. "Mami! Tati! The Wires!"
He called out his warning just as his parents were swinging towards him. His mother gave him her customary smile of reassurance that she always did at this part of the performance. But suddenly, her face transformed into absolute terror.
The trembling grew suddenly louder and louder until it cut off all together. Dick heard his mother gasp. He saw a similar look of horror on his father's face.
"Dick!" His mother cried.
And then they were falling.
Batman: Gotham City Fair Grounds
It had been four days and still he hadn't found any evidence to point to the culprit. All he'd found was a stray toothpick from one of Gotham's prestigious clubs, a pack of cigarettes, and missing bolts. It was all evidence to suggest that someone had murdered the Graysons, but not enough to convict anyone.
Four days ago he'd watched as the cables had broken and the Flying Graysons had fallen to their deaths. He'd watched in horror as the mother's lips had parted, giving a last cry to their six year old son up on the platform. He'd seen the look of utter terror on the child's face. The disbelief, the sadness, and the incomprehension as well. While everyone had been staring at the bodies lying on the ground, Bruce had been looking up at the child. He was young, younger than Bruce had been when he'd lost his parents.
Bruce had watched, as if distanced from the scene, as the tiny child had raced down to the bodies. He'd just lied there, sobbing and shaking them as if it would wake them up.
He'd wanted to make sure that no one would ever have to lose their parents as he had. That's why he had become the Batman in the first place. Yet, for that one hapless moment, the Graysons had fallen and there was nothing he could do. Now their little son was left behind, alone. What good was Batman? He hadn't even been able to stop that- the basic thing he'd wanted to stop more than anything else in the world.
The least he could do now for the child was to bring his parents' murder to justice. But tonight was the circus's last night in town. Yesterday had been the funeral for the Graysons. Bruce had paid for it though he hadn't gone. Tonight the circus was leaving… and little Richard Grayson was being left behind.
"What are you hoping to find?" Lieutenant Gordon asked as Batman opened the door to the Graysons' trailer.
"Anything." Batman answered truthfully. Perhaps the Graysons were involved in Gotham's underground or had somehow offended one of them? He was just looking for something, a reason, or some type of evidence.
Batman's eyes searched the tiny trailer. Costumes and clothing were scattered around. Two beds were in the corner. On one sat a worn purple elephant, obviously the boy's. Bruce frowned. It didn't look like anyone had been around here.
"Hasn't anyone given the boy his things?" Batman asked. He went to the bed and picked up the stuffed animal.
"He's being put in the orphanage." Gordon said regretfully. "They don't have room for everyone's belongings."
"Then what is going to happen to all of this?" Batman demanded. This was all the child had left of his family!
"I don't know. I suppose the circus folk will get rid of it or reuse it." Gordon answered. He looked at the rigid bat. "I'll wait outside." He said softly. There was something dangerous right now with Batman and it worried him. The police officer stepped outside. Not too much later he left the scene all together.
Batman sat on the bed, staring into the elephant's eyes. This was a loved toy. And there, over by the window, was a picture of the family together. Posters of the Flying Graysons hung around the room. Everywhere he looked was a precious memory. Certainly the boy would want these things. They were all he had left of his parents.
With sudden vigor, Batman searched the room. There were no clues whatsoever, but that wasn't what he was looking for anymore. He found some suitcases and packed some of the boy's clothing, photos of his parents, Christmas ornaments, some toys, and anything he thought might hold a memory for the child. He knew the lieutenant was right. The child wouldn't be able to keep everything. But, he could give him some of his most precious things, couldn't he?
As Batman loaded the things into the batmobile he decided he was right. The boy needed something of comfort right now.
It was easy work to break into the orphanage where the tiny boy had been put. Carefully Batman placed a single suitcase beside the boy's bed. He would keep the others in the Batcave. Once the boy was adopted, he'd drop them off. He wanted the boy to have something to remember his parents by. When Bruce had lost his parents at least he'd been able to keep his home and all his belongings, everything that held their memories. After he'd failed the child this was the least he could do.
He went to the window, but a soft whimper from the boy made him freeze. He glanced back at the bed where the child lay. The bedsheets were tangled about him and he hugged his pillow tightly. Dried tears stained his cheeks. Bruce winced. He remembered the nightmares. This little boy… Bruce wished he could have done something to prevent this.
With a soft sigh he darted out the window. He had barely exited before the boy awoke. Batman froze just outside the window. He waited, holding his breath.
A moment later a delightful squeal filled the air. "Peanut!" The Grayon boy cried. Batman peered inside, hoping he'd chosen the right items.
It seemed he had. Richard Grayon was holding the stuffed animal close, kissing its head. In the suitcase there was also a photo album. Below that was Dick's latest costume, then a few posters. Bruce watched as Dick pulled out a poster, gently tracing the faces of his parents.
The child's face turned to the window, a small smile on his face. "multumec." Richard whispered. Thank you.
And although Bruce knew that the child hadn't seen him, the words released a bit of weight from his chest.
Gotham City Orphanage
Dick stared wide eyed at the man in front of him. He was a big man. He had wide shoulders, and big hands, and perfectly combed hair. He wore a business suit that was probably more expensive than anything Dick's family had ever owned. The man had a scowl on his face as he talked with the lady in charge of the orphanage.
But, when he looked at Dick, the scowl faded. Instead, there was a small smile, and behind that smile there was something else. Something that looked like sadness.
"Hello, Dick, my name is Bruce Wayne." The man said. His voice was deep, but somehow gentle. The man knelt in front of Dick. He seemed hesitant now, gauging the boy's reaction. "I…I wanted to adopt you."
"Adoptă mine?" Dick asked. In his shock he'd accidentally switched to his native tongue. He blushed. The lady didn't like when he spoke in Romanian.
But Bruce however just smiled. "Da. Aş dori să vă adopte. Atâta timp cât ok cu el." The man answered in perfect Romanian. Yes. I would like to adopt you. As long as your ok with it.
Dick looked nervously from Bruce to the adoption lady. A smile spread across his face. "Aş dori ca" He answered softly. I'd like that. Then, before Bruce could react, the child threw himself into Bruce's arms, holding on tight.
After a long moment Bruce's arms circled around the small boy. He'd never felt something so friagile in his arms. He pulled the boy closer and pressed his face against the child's hair. He promised himself then and there had he would keep the little boy safe. This child wouldn't have to suffer the way he had.
Dick pulled back from him, another nervous smile on his lips. "Vă simţiţi în siguranţă." He whispered, resting his head against Bruce's shoulder. You feel safe.
Bruce stood up, cradling the boy against him. "Promit că voi proteja." He murmured gently.
I promise I'll protect you.
Up Next: Bruce doesn't quite understand what being a parent is all about and this leaves Dickey feeling lonely... but soon Bruce will learn.
Thank you for reading!
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