One week. He had one week before Father's Day to get Bruce the perfect gift. But what? What could the seven year old buy that would symbolize his thanks and love towards the man who saved him?
These questions ran through Richard Grayson's mind as his little feet paced around his room. This would be the first real Father's Day the two shared together. Last year it had only been three months since Dick's parents tragic death and neither had paid much mind to the day. Now, this time, Richard planned to do it right.
Dick had already tried to build Batman a new weapon, but that had resulted in his room being trashed and scratches appearing on his hands that he said came from playing in the rose bush. Then there was the custom made costume, but it came out much, much too small and holes between the stitching and only one half of the costume actually being sown shut.
All was lost! There was nothing! Bruce was so closed off, all he could think about was the gadgets Batman used.
Dick had been struggling for the past two weeks to come up with any idea, but none revealed itself. He couldn't bring this to Alfred. It's not that Dick did not trust the butler's secrecy, just that this was supposed to be between Dick and Bruce. He wanted it to be something from himself. He owed Bruce that at least for all he has done for the child.
Well, he could always build a-
"Dick," Bruce called from downstairs. "It's time to go."
Dick frowned at his wall as he halted his nervous walking. He didn't have time to go to Watchtower! He needed to stay focused and everyone knows Flash is the most annoying person to be around when it comes to focusing. On the other hand, he was getting no where. Maybe hanging around League could give him an idea.
Dick opened the door and ran down the stairs where his father stood waiting. His pristine suit made his dark stature seem almost intimidating, but Richard knew that was the point seeing as he had been at an important meeting earlier that day.
Dick looked up into Bruce's dark eyes which gave the boy a look saying "you know how I hate waiting". Dick smiled a silent apology before turning to skip down the hall. Bruce stayed behind a few moments until following after his seven year old son and smiling as the boy dodged all the expensive and fragile furniture decorating the halls.
Father and son walked silently to Bruce's study and towards the grandfather clock. Going down the elevator Bruce decided it would be his turn to break the silence.
"You seem quite."
Dick looked up at his father before turning his gaze back in front of him. "Thinking." He clarified.
Bruce stared at his son's black mop of hair as he waited for more of an answer, but when he got none he asked, "Thinking about what?"
Soon both sinking back into the silence they had been in earlier. Both wondering, both of each other.
Well he doesn't need a new giant penny...
Thinking? He's seven! Aren't children supposed to speak their minds?...
Maybe I could get him a helicopter...
The parenting books never talked about this...
then again he has the Batplane...
"Master Bruce, Master Richard." Alfred called as his charges stepped out of the elevator only to look deep in thought.
"Are you feeling alright, sir?" The butler asked.
"Yes, of course I am." Bruce grumbled as he swiftly went to change.
The butler watched as his older charge walked off before turning to the younger boy. Just as his father had, he looked to be in deep conversation with himself and barely even registered the older man standing in front of him.
"Master Richard, I believe you need to be in your costume if you want to go to Watchtower." Alfred said to the boy.
"Yeah, okay." The boy mumbled.
Minutes passed as both Dark Knight and Boy Wonder came out in full disguise. Batman started up the teleporter and then walked to stand next to Robin, still stuck in his mind. The caped crusader was tempted to ask his son, again, what was wrong but in the end decided against it.
This is hopeless!
Coming to Watchtower was a complete and utter mistake. Not only did he not have an idea for Bruce's gift, but Flash and Superman had both somehow talked Robin into playing five rounds of Go Fish. All of which Robin won, of course.
Presently Robin sat in the Game Room because Batman had told him to stay there while Batman, Flash, Superman and both Green Lanterns went off on a mission. It was the perfect time to try and find something to help with ideas, to snoop and hack computers. All of which failed.
Robin sat suddenly with a "humph" of frustration. Impossible! This was impossible! And Robin hated using the word "Impossible". Absolutely loathed it. Not even loath, abhorred it, execrated, anathematized and accursed that stupid word!
The Boy Wonder looked up at the sound of his name to see who had interrupted his rant he knew he would blame on Alfred and the butler's insistence of buying him a dictionary for school.
Wonder Woman smiled down at him with a questioning look. "Are you alright? You seem distraught."
The child sighed. "Yeah, definitely not traught."
Her look of confusion only increased. "Excuse me?"
They both let silence still the strange conversation before the Amazon princess pulled on another smile.
"It seems to me something is bothering you." She started. "Would you like to discuss it?"
Robin looked up at her again and contemplated just walking away and continuing his search himself. But seeing as he had not gotten anywhere in the four and a half hours since he and Batman had both arrived he figured he had nothing to lose. Especially with his father off planet.
"Well, you see," Robin look nervously down at the ground once more. "I'm trying to figure out what to get Batman for Father's Day."
Wonder Woman said nothing for a moment and eventually knelt beside the child with a smile. "Well that is wonderful. Good for you. I know Bruce will love whatever it is you give him."
"That's the problem!" Robin exclaimed suddenly, almost startling the woman. "I don't know what to get! I've gone through everything!"
She watched as the boy huffed and crossed his arms angrily. For a second Diana caught a glimpse of Bruce in the boy and smiled.
"I know you will think of something, and whatever you decide on, I know Bruce will love it."
Robin stared at her from the corner of his eyes, then turned them back to the ground.
"Why don't I help you?" Wonder Woman wondered aloud. "I could help you think of ideas."
Robin thought for a moment before nodding his agreement.
"Well we won't find it sitting around here. Lets walk around."
She stood and turned her back to the boy as she slowly made her way to the door. Robin quickly followed after her and jogged to her side, walking silently down the Justice League's halls. They made their way to the cafeteria to see Dinah, Shayera and J'onn conversing.
"Hey, Rob." Dinah said as the boy slid beside her.
Dinah opened her mouth to say more, but was interrupted by Shayera. "I can't believe Barry is actually thinking about buying Iris a Flash T-Shirt for their anniversary."
"Him too?" Dinah gaped. "The other day when Oliver and I were walking downtown he saw a street vendor selling Green Lantern shirts. The guy actually asked me if I wanted one."
"Heroes and their egos." Diana sighed.
"Poor Roy, Oliver bought him one and now the kid refuses to even speak to Oliver." Dinah informed.
As if a light bulb had suddenly been lit, Robin jumped up in his seat.
"Whoa there kiddo, what has gotten into you?" Dinah held her hands before her as if to shield herself. "Did you have sugar? You know how Batman feels about you having sweets."
"I got it!" Robin squealed, jumping up and down.
"Huh?" Shayera watched as the child bounced from foot to foot.
"Robin, calm down-" Diana didn't even get to finish her sentence.
"It's perfect," Robin yelled as he hopped off the bench and ran for the door. "I knew grown ups didn't just gossip for nothing!"
"We're doing what now?"
"Yeah, I'm confused too."
Dick grunted as he sat before his two best friends, both of which were being completely useless.
"We're gonna make T-shirts for the heroes of the original seven!"
Wally and Roy turned to give each other a questioning look before turning to their considered younger brother and asking, "Why?"
"For Father's Day!" Dick exclaimed.
"But Barry isn't my dad, he's my uncle." Wally input.
"Oliver is an idiot."
"Plus, none of the original seven are parents except for Batman and Green Arrow."
"Something that stupid shouldn't be called a father."
"Aw come on Roy, why are you mad at your dad this time?" Wally asked.
"Because that dunce-"
Dick waited for his friends to look at him once again. "At first I was trying to think of a present for Bruce, but now that I thought about it, the other Leaguers deserve something for Father's Day too."
"But T-shirts?" Roy said ruefully. "Won't that just boost their already super-mega egos?"
Dick crossed his arms and glared at the older boy. "Well you're wearing Oliver's shirt aren't you?"
Roy quickly looked down at his attire and an angry flush overtook his feature. Wally inspected his green tee and gave a large grin. "Oh my gosh, you are!"
"But, I mean, that is just. You in Green Ar-"
"Go any further with that comment and I will make sure an arrow penetrates your skull your next mission."
Wally quickly shut up after that.
"Come on Roy," Dick pleaded. "This isn't just for Oliver, or just for Bruce. It's for the League."
All was silent until the two could not think of a probable argument, neither did they want to squash the idea for the young boys plan for his father.
"Alright, alright." Roy sighed. "What have we got?"
There were at least twenty plain T-shirts sitting before therm on the floor, all ranging from black to dark blues to yellow and even orange. To the side were bottles of glue, glitter, scissors, paper and markers.
"Well, I asked Alfred to run to the store yesterday and he got all this stuff for me!" Dick beamed.
"And he didn't think that was...you know, weird?" Wally asked, eying the glitter suspiciously. The girl behind him in class dumped a whole bottle of that stuff in his hair last week and it had taken uncle Barry three hours to wash it all out. And cut it off. Answering the question as to why he was wearing the red base ball cap.
"Well, I didn't exactly tell him why I needed all this stuff. Mainly just handed him a list and let him come up with his own story at the store."
"Ah." The red heads nodded.
"Okay," Roy picked up a pair of kiddie scissors too small for his hands. "Lets get started."
Three Hours Later
"This. Is. Impossible!" Not that word again. That's twice in one week!
"Who knew shirts could be so hard." Wally mumbled as he collapsed on the couch of the Game Room in the Wayne Manor.
"It's not fair!" Dick threw his scissors on the floor.
Roy just sat there with scraps of a purple shirt in his hair and a yellow tee around his neck that had, at least, six different hols on its right side.
"Maybe we can think of something else." Wally pondered.
"No, Kid, we can't! Father's Day is five days away!" Dick wailed. What was he to do now?
"Hey, hey, it's okay. We can think of something." Roy cooed.
"Master Richard!" The boys heard Alfred call through the wood door. "Master Oliver is here to receive Master Roy."
Roy and Wally both shared a desperate look as they turned to the younger boy sulking in front of them.
"We'll figure something out," Roy said as he stood and headed for the door, shedding the scraps as he ran a hand through his red hair. "I promise."
With that he shut the door and was gone, but not before the sound of Oliver happily shouting, "Your wearing the shirt!"
Batman had taken Robin to Watchtower again that night because the League had called him for a mission and Alfred had gone to run some errands. Robin sat sulking in the cafeteria, punching himself mentally for being such a failure. He didn't deserve Bruce! Especially if he couldn't come up with a simple Father's Day present.
"Hello Robin." Wonder Woman greeted as she sat beside him.
She looked closer at the boy with a hard gaze. "Is everything alright? I thought you had a gift for Bruce."
The Boy Wonder slowly shook his head. "No, I mean, I did. It didn't work out though."
"Yeah, Me, Roy and Wally were all gonna make the original seven heroes T-shirts, but it was...harder then we thought." Robin whispered.
"Really? That's a wonderful idea." Diana smiled.
"But it didn't work!"
"Well if it is shirts you need help with, I know how I can help."
Robin turned his masked eyes to her and raised a brow, once again reminding the woman of his father.
"Why yes," She grinned and moved closer to the boy to whisper to him. "When I was Clark's birthday party last year, I met Lois. She was lovely and a strong woman. Very independent. I can see why Clark likes her." Robin cleared his throat. "Yes, as I was saying. When I talked to her she was telling me of her friend's new business in the T-shirt business. Apparently it is the occupation to take up these days if you can think of simple witty comments."
"Really?" Robin squealed.
"Of course, I'm sure if I were to call her up and ask for her friend's phone number I can help you order a rush delivery."
Before she knew it, Diana was attacked by eighty pounds of cuteness and black, red and yellow. "Thank you!"
Wonder Woman smiled at the child as she returned the embrace. "You are welcome."
"And why do we have to be here as well?" Roy asked, irritation dripping from his words.
"Because," Dick said as he placed his hands on his hips and glared at his friend. "This is from all of us."
"As long as I don't have to spend money I'm okay with staying." Wally said before taking off in a speedy dash. He returned five seconds later with a coke in one hand and a half eaten banana in the other.
"Fine!" Roy grunted. "Can we please just get this over with."
Dick smiled and held up the large shopping bag which held their presents. He turned to walk down the halls to the Meeting Room where the leaders were presently holding their conference, but as Richard knew, the meeting would be adjourned in three minutes tops.
"So. Roy," Wally said slyly behind him. "How did Father's Day go at your house?"
Something resembling a growl sounded before a hesitant mumble was heard. "Oliver and Dinah made breakfast and stuff, but it was all in vain seeing as I'm still only eating in my room after the T-shirt incident."
"It sounds like it was Roy Day instead of Father's Day," Wally cackled. "The shirt think wasn't that bad."
"Well anyways, we won't have to go through anything like it again because I burned it when I got home."
Dick hoped he wouldn't burn the ones he had had Lois's friend make. Father's Day at his house had been fairly uneventful, mainly because Dick was sure Bruce had just forgotten the holiday had even passed. If the event hadn't been so close to his parent's death Dick was sure it wouldn't have made a difference. Bruce, according to Alfred, didn't like the holiday following his own parent's death.
It did hurt to celebrate Father's Day without his biological father, but even though he would always be his father, a present was not something he could leave at the Wayne cemetery. Bruce, on the other hand, was his new father figure and could certainly appreciate a gift now and then. Richard only hoped he could change his father's views on the holiday.
When the boys halted before the doors leading into the room where the League members were currently meeting, Dick pressed his ear against the door, only to hear the typical, unimportant banter.
"Come on Batman, how have you never played beer pong?" Superman.
"Burned it, Dinah. I found it in the fireplace. He burned it!" Green Arrow.
"Whose hungry? I could always run to China to get the best Chinese take out." Flash.
Alright, now or never. Here it goes.
Dick pushed the doors open to reveal a very surprised looking Justice League. The group looked incredulously at the three boys before them before Flash burst in, "What are you guys doing? We are in a meeting."
dick heard Roy scoff and Wally giggle behind him. Dick turned to meet Batman's bemused gaze and the boy could only picture the raised brow beneath the cowl. He gave his father a small smile before looking over to Wonder Woman who gave him a reassuring nod.
"Um, well, seeing as none of you guys have any, you know, kids," Que Queen's insulted "Hey!" and Dinah's slap to the back of his head. Then there was Bruce's ever so slightly stiffening of the back. Dick hoped he hadn't said the wrong thing too soon. "So, we made you all something."
That caused all the heroes to stop and all mimic Batman's hidden eye brow quirk.
"Wait what?" Superman asked.
Dick placed the bag on the ground and reached in to pull out a large blue T-shirt. He quickly ran up The Man of Steel and raised it up to him. Superman slowly retrieved it from the boy's small hands and unfold the cloth. Printed on the front was a the bright red "S" symbol for his Kryptonian family. The man turned to look back at the boy, but he was already gone, handing a green shirt to J'onn.
The boys took turns delivering shirts to all the heroes and soon the room was broken out into cheerful commentary.
"Wow, this is awesome!"
"Such handy work."
"No, Oliver, I will not be wearing this one."
"Aw, it looks just like you!"
Batman watched as Dick slowly approached his father and smile brightly up at The Dark Knight. Bruce smiled back and picked his son up to place him in his lap. Richard gently put a black bundle in the man's hands and shyly look up at him expectantly.
Bruce slowly untangled the cloth to find a yellow oval adoring the front with the small cut out of a bat in the center. He caught sight of something on the back and turned it around to see the neat yellow print against the black saying, "My daddy can beat your daddy any day."
Just seeing the word "daddy" brought a smile on The batman's face, causing any Leaguer looking to do a double take. He looked down at his son, softly kissing the child's forehead and whispering, "Thank you, Dickey. I love it."
Richard smiled and hugged his father tightly. "Happy Father's Day, daddy."
After a few moments, and a newly changed Barry, Clark and Queen in their new shirts, everyone started calming down. Small chatter could be heard, but all Bruce was focused on was the boy wrapped in his cape as he silently dozed off. He ran his fingers through the child's black hair until he heard his son speak.
"Daddy, what's beer pong?"
Bruce paused in his actions before whispering, "Go to sleep, Richard."
While the child slept, The Dark Knight thought of ways of torture that would leave The Man of Steel to never again celebrate Father's Day.
Yay for Father's Day chapter! And Daddybats! Woot, Woot! I didn't really want to bring Roy and Wally in until later chapters, but I got this idea for Father's Day and it just wouldn't have been a good chapter without them! Sorry it didn't come up earlier, but finding time to type between hanging with my own dad was hard!
Enjoy and review! More soon :)
PS, Dick is (as said in the story) around 7, so Wally is about 9 and Roy around 12 (but I'm leaning towards 13 b/c of all his angsty teenager banter in this story)