The first sound he heard was water. A steady dripping sound, but it was heavy and constant. Rain, his mind surmised. It was raining outside. The next thing was the feeling that came back to his body. Sensation of how exactly he was positioned, and what was touching him. It was strange, as though he was experiencing things for the first time, or perhaps the first time in a while.
He was laying down; it was soft and warm. He was comfortable, but his body felt stiff. He had been still for much too long, he guessed. There was a heavy tug at the back of his hand, it was unpleasant. An I.V was his conclusion. Even though there was an I.V, he knew he wasn't in the hospital. The scent in the air was clean like fresh linen, instead of the stale chemical smell of disinfectant.
Questions began to pop up in his mind, one after another, as to why he was in bed. He had yet to open his eyes. They felt glued shut, his eyelids weighted down. After thinking about it long enough his body complied, and he blinked his eyes open.
Dick Grayson had woke up in his bedroom. He was alone and it was dark; only a small lamp across the room on his desk was on to illuminate the space.
He confirmed that he had indeed been there for a while when he looked around and saw a half-full bag of saline hanging from the poll next to his bed. Plus the I.V that was in his hand was an additional clue. But he couldn't recall what had led him to be bedridden. And the I.V. certainly wouldn't be necessary unless he had been there for an extended amount of time.
All right… so why was he here like this? Dick traced back through his memories to see what he could remember. He seemed to be drawing a great, big blank.
What he did know was that this was his bedroom, and he was in his own home at the mansion. Okay, good start, he thought to himself. It seemed like an achievement, but he couldn't quite place why. His face hurt a bit, and he could feel a long scratch healing on his cheek. Maybe he was in some kind of fight.
The clock on the stand next to his bed read 1:34 A.M. Even though the hour was late, he decided he needed to get up and walk around.
Dick carefully removed the I.V. from his hand, wincing as the needle slid out from under his skin. He pulled the bed covers back, swung his legs over the side, and carefully pushed himself out of bed. The upright position of standing made him dizzy, but it passed quickly enough.
He moved out into the hall cautiously. One, because his legs were stiff and he didn't want to fall over. Two, Bruce was a late night type of person, and he didn't want to alert him.
Dick made his way down the long hall, which led to the main staircase that granted access to the foyer. Walking around made him feel like he had been gone for a very long time. He couldn't remember why though. Was he on a mission? Wait… he needed to remember something there. What was it?
He continued walking though the hall down to the first step of the grand staircase. Something definitely felt off. There were pieces missing from his memory and when he tried to think of something specific, he drew a complete blank. It was like the memory was there, sitting just at the forefront of his mind, but it didn't want to fully reveal itself.
He sat down at the top of the stairs looking around the mansion. Grasping at anything he could think of. He knew where he was, and why he was there. He could remember the first time he walked through the heavy mahogany doors at the main entrance after Bruce had decided to take him in.
Then at that thought memories came flooding back to him. Too fast to keep straight. It was like watching a dozen washed-out black and white films being projected before his eyes.
There was the time he slid down the banister when he was nine, despite being told not to. He would have broken his leg if Bruce hadn't caught him at the last second.
Helping Alfred decorate the Christmas tree his first year to surprise Bruce when he got home from work, while eating home-made chocolate chip cookies.
The first time he accidentally threw a bataraang in the house, and practically cut the chain to the antique chandelier hanging from the ceiling in the foyer.
How astonished he was to learn that Bruce Wayne was Batman. The Batman.
The images and memories swirled around him like ghosts. He could see everything in his mind's eye. They were memories that had been stored away behind a levee, and now that levee had finally burst.
As he started to be able to focus again, he was noticed he had been staring off into space while still sitting on the top of the staircase. He had to find Bruce. Dick still didn't have all the answers he needed; there were pieces of this puzzle still missing.
Dick pushed himself off the steps and made his way to the clock that served as entrance to the Bat Cave. The hidden door slide open when he pulled down on the pendulum, and revealed the staircase down to the cave. If Bruce hadn't already found Dick by now (he seemed to have a sixth sense when it came to Dick doing things he wasn't supposed to be doing), then he had to be down there.
The stone steps were cold under his feet as he quietly moved down them. But he could see the lights were on up ahead, and as the staircase rounded at the bottom he could see Bruce typing away on the computer. He was suited up, but his cowl had been pulled back. A grimace stretched across his features as he glared at equations on the screen.
"Bruce," Dick called over to him. Bruce quickly spun around in his chair when he was called. Upon seeing Dick standing over by the staircase, he was on his feet and over to Dick's side in an instant.
"Dick! How are you feeling? You shouldn't be out of bed yet."
Bruce usually wasn't so doting, unless something really bad had happened. So he apparently had missed something big.
"What's going on?" Dick asked.
"I'd like to ask you that question," Bruce replied. "You need to tell me what you can remember."
"Uh, lots of things I guess. Can't remember what would have caused me to be in bed though. Was I in an accident?"
"In a way, yes. Can you tell me how old are you?" Bruce asked.
"Is this a test?" Dick laughed. "I'm thirteen. Are you sure I'm the one who's forgotten something?"
"Humor me. Walk me through what you remember before waking up."
"Fine," Dick crossed his arms, and stared at the floor in concentration. Then after a few moments he looked up at Bruce. "You made me get dressed up in a monkey suit for one of your work charity events. It was super boring, but I was talking to this woman and she…" Dick trailed off, his eyes widened in realization. "She was Poison Ivy. I got hit with something, and things start getting fuzzy there."
"Can you recall anything else after that?"
"It's bits and pieces. I remember a cold shower, going to the mountain, and speaking to Wally. Oh!" Dick spun quickly and looked up the staircase for a moment, and back to Bruce. "Whoa, the team. I forgot about them, but they were here. Did you tell them who I was? Nevermind, that can wait. There's not much else. I remember feeling kind of sick, and being in the woods for some reason, but after that I woke up in bed upstairs. I feel like there's something else there, but I'm not sure what."
Bruce nodded, "Poison Ivy attacked you with a drug that was supposed to make you lose all of your memories. But it was a brash, and reckless choice on her part and the drug was not stable. It worked, but was also putting too much stress on your body."
"That's why I had the IV?" Dick asked.
"Yes, we managed to get the antidote she had, but were not sure it would restore all of your memories. It seems that you can recollect everything up until the point when your memories started to fade. That's good. I was afraid it wouldn't work at all."
"I'm pretty sure everything I'm supposed to know is up here now," Dick tapped his head. He smiled at Bruce, sensing that he was still worried about him. "I still feel like I might be missing a chunk of the story though."
"We can discuss it in the morning, but I'm glad to have you back," Bruce pulled Dick closer to him, and enveloped him in a hug. Dick was startled at first, but quickly returned it.
"It's late," Bruce said after a moment. "Let's head upstairs. You still need to rest."
"Can we tell the others first?" Dick asked, as they ascended the steps together.
"I'll alert the League, and in the morning you can tell your team. Okay?"
Dick smiled, "Deal."
One last thought drifted through his mind as he returned to his bedroom. It was of the first moment he put on his suit, and decided to become Robin. That Dick Grayson was a hero.
I know many people have been waiting for this story to update for a while now. I appreciate that people are still interested in it, and that it's been enjoyed so much by so many readers. I just lost interest in writing this, but I wanted to complete it one day. By no means is this the greatest story out there. There are mistakes, and if I get encouraged enough I'll go through and fix up the story. At this point I think the story is complete for now. With that said, I am so happy and grateful to everyone who left a comment and stuck with this story through the years. Thank you!