It was hard to be around the current Robin. For many reasons besides the obvious prank that rattled his entire existence. It shouldn't have, of course Dick knew that much, but it really made him… feel something he hadn't felt in a while. Something he was not very comfortable with. So, in short, he just avoided the problem completely. He stayed away from the Manor as much as possible by chatting with his team and staying at their base in Mount Justice more than the current residential area of the modern Boy Wonder.
It worked for a long time as well. Bruce understood Dick had minor issues with the current Robin. The Bat had to remind Nightwing that he hadn't been replaced, he was too old to be a side kick and needed to go on his own plus being Robin could really help the troubled street rat they brought in. Calling Jason a street rat almost made Bruce's lies okay to Dick but they never truly were to the acrobat because he never actually hated Jason or disliked him.
Dick could never truly hate anyone, except for Two Face and Tony Zucco. He'd become livid around either one.
Actually it was something else all entirely when it came to the youngest of the Bat Family.
Perhaps it was not fair to his replacement that Dick was treating him like that, just completely ignoring his existence sometimes then others completely smothering him when he needed Jason's assistance, but all in all he hadn't seen a change in Jason; actually he rather liked getting to know the kid in the weeks before he enacted his prank. Jason was honest, brutally so. The troubled teen was scared and found fighting a way to combat his uncertainties. But it never rid the teen of his constantly gnawing fears of being dominated by someone and told he was absolutely useless. However, Dick really didn't appreciate the kid's prank, it broke the trust they had built up. The ex-Robin was being let in and suddenly Jason had pushed him out in a way even Wally would have been beaten for doing.
But the fellow vigilante had moments where he just needed to see Jason, especially the nights where someone would say they saw Robin killed by some villain. The ravenette would drop whatever he was doing and call Alfred; who always seemed a little too smug, or however much the butler could muster without being completely conceited, at his need to know if the teen was okay. Dick would always assume Alfred was just being, well, Alfred about the situation but the young adult knew the butler appreciated the fact he took an interest in the teen.
Then it all just went to hell.
"Hey, Bruce I need to—" Dick stated with a bit of mirth in his voice as usual, until he stopped talking midsentence.
"You killed someone Jason!" A voice spewed out venomously. It was rough and furious. Dick stopped dead in his tracks. Bruce sounded pissed. He almost couldn't keep his eyes in his skull after Bruce's words echoed in his mind.
Jason killed someone…?
"I didn't! He fell! You would have known if you had been there!"
"He would not have fallen if you had obeyed my orders!"
Dick couldn't see the argument taking place but he was beyond appalled by what he heard. All he knew currently was Jason didn't follow a command from Bruce and someone fell to their death because of it.
"Even worse you do not even feel sorry for it!"
"Should I? He was a rapist and a pedophile! Scum like that doesn't deserve to –"
There was a slap of skin hitting skin that echoed in the room. A quick intake of breath and Dick stepped forward, surprise and anger coursing through his veins at the reaction from his ex-mentor.
Or tried to.
A hand caught his shoulder; the vigilante should have seen it coming before that absolute moment. His skills were waning as he let his guard down in the Manor, well the Bat Cave.
"Master Dick, it's not best to interrupt the quarrel. Master Bruce and Master Jason need to sort this out themselves." Dick let out a breath as he let his shoulders sink. Alfred's voice held a very non-approving tone, which he assumed was aimed at the way Bruce was handling the situation in the cave. The butler might not have been right in the situation though Dick knew it was best to obey him, he knew what was happening in more defined detail than he would have ever known.
He just wasn't here often enough to see what was happening while Alfred was, every day listening to the fights and the arguments.
"How often does this happen?" Dick muttered in a defeated tone as the butler shuffled him out of the cave via the stairs. The elevator would have caused too much noise and let both of the vigilantes know that someone was with them and heard the argument. It wouldn't be best to butt in.
"Lately it's been getting worse, Master Dick. They come back usually fighting… I'm unsure how stable the Dynamic Duo has become as of late." Dick let a sigh flow though his nose. He knew Jason was not one to follow orders, even more so after the pranking fiasco. Full blown out teen age rebellion. Yay.
"Is it my fault?" The original Boy Wonder asked, refusing to move his eyes from the ground.
"No, it's not. Master Jason is rebellious. Master Bruce… is not sure how to handle it. You were always ready to follow. He's…"
"Having a hard transition? It's been two years Alfred. There's not an excuse for that behavior." Dick said in a not too happy tone a voice. Actually it came out rather snappy.
"He's trying to make another you, Master Dick. He's becoming frustrated because he cannot."
Dick paused and looked up to the slowly aging butler. He hadn't known that piece of information.
"He shouldn't want another me. Sure, we were great when I was a young and a solider but Jason will never be the soldier. Neither will I. He should know that…"
"I know, Master Dick… and I believe he knows as well."
"You have your way of coping, Master Dick, and Master Bruce has his, though I would appreciate if you could tell him to back off of Master Jason. He's become a little too wound up and snappy for anyone's tastes."
"Gotcha, old man." Dick gave Alfred a half-hearted smile in which the man merely shook his head at the young adult's antics.
"I'll be at the Mountain. You should send Jay-bird when he's calm enough. I actually really need to use the Bat Computer. How long will they be there?" Dick asked, letting his eyes flick between Alfred and the hidden staircase that lead to the computer he desperately needed to use.
"Hm… Master Dick, have you baked cookies recently?"
"Uh… no why? Wait…" Dick stood there for a moment before his eyes widened in a sudden epiphany, "Oh! OH! So they'll be lured by the smell while I sneak in and abuse my awesome c—"
"I'll get the bowls."
Recognized, Robin B17
Dick was typing on the holographic screen pulled in front of him as his eyebrows shot up to his forehead. He turned to fold his arms as he placed weight on mostly his left side with a sloppy smile plastered onto his face.
"Heya Jay-bird." The older of the two said smoothly.
"Hi." Jason said with a bruise plain as day on his face. Dick couldn't help but wince as he saw the mark that adorned his younger replacement. It set off alarms in his body that he knew had every right to go off. Jason was using a defeated tone, a tone that made every instinct in his body to hug the kid senseless. But, of course, he knew better. The Current Boy Wonder would just close himself off.
"I'm sorry." Dick stated, with genuine emotion, "I had… no idea what was happening. I should have. I just—"
"Shut up, Golden Boy." Jason said with almost a sneer, "Just tell me why you wanted me here. I'm not in the mood for Princess Happy Face to question the bruise."
"You knew I was there?"
"You have a certain foot fall which I heard after I had the clearness slapped to my face. Dunno if Bruce heard it. Don't care. Now. What. Do. You. Want." Dick tried not to wince at Jason's tone. He knew the Robin had every right to be upset with him.
"Look… Jay. I know how Bruce gets, and don't try to tell me I don't. I was the first, I wasn't the best. I sucked up; I'm not even going to lie. I was… a solider, a follower that just did or tried to do exactly what he said because… in the end I knew he was right. You challenge him to a certain extent but in the end sometimes your ideas are a bit too rash and not thought out, I'm sure… but you usually follow my… suggestions. Why do you try so hard to not follow his? He does it with the best interest, I assure you." Dick stated, although his eyes were covered with his mask he was sure Jason knew how sincere he was being. It hurt to know this foolishness was going on and he was powerless to stop it.
"Look, Dickie-bird, I'm sick of being made to be you. I'm not you! I'll never be you! Sure, I know what you say is best for keeping most of me intact but with Bruce? Go flip over that, go pole vault over that uhm how the fuck am I supposed to do that! Sure I can do the easier stuff like single flips and barely walk a tight rope, barely, but flexibility and acrobatics are your talents not mine! You're the natural athlete. I'm not. I just have a nasty left hook and a knack for breaking into shit." Jason hissed out, flinging his arms back to somehow give Dick a better understanding of how pissed off he was. Dick understood, more than understood.
"Just shut the fuck up and tell me why I'm here." Jason snarled out, almost in a pissed Batman fashion. Dick couldn't help but give the teen a pitied look.
"I'm leaving a spot open for you in Young Justice… if Bruce ever hits you again unprovoked or not in a training situation. You come to me immediately, do you understand? I'm not going to let Bruce bully you into submission, you've got spunk. Bruce can't handle it. Let the ass brood, I just want to make sure you're okay… alright?" The older of the two vigilantes stated in a soothing voice, hoping to calm the rebellious teen's attitude.
"…really?" Dick's heart was almost pained. Jason whispered out the really as if he was unsure. The blue and black clad vigilante quickly absorbed the other and pulled him into a tight hug.
"God yes, Jay-bird. I'm not letting the asshole touch you like that again. It's not right."
"Maybe… but hey…Dick I've got a question." Dick let go of the current Robin before taking a step back. The teen was almost as tall as he was which almost made him frown. Jason would be taller than him in the long run. Great.
"What is it, Jay?" Dick said, concerned. He really hoped the teen was not going to that Bruce had already done something to the younger vigilante. What he witnessed, Dick hoped, would have been the first time the man lashed out.
"Marry me?" Jason said with a leer in his voice. Dick's face exploded in a blush as he spluttered out an answer of excusing himself from the room. He could hear Jason's laugh echoing through the entire Cave as he jumped into the now overly used room.
God damn it Jason!
Dick should have known every conversation would end with Jason asking for the older vigilante to marry him after the original prank.
Still didn't make it any less embarrassing. At least he didn't say it in front of the team…
The young adult paled at the thought of Jason saying it in the middle of debrief. With a groan he threw himself to the bed hoping tomorrow wouldn't be like this.
Hoping his life wouldn't turn into a constant Jason asking to elope with him or worse. Of course, a tinier part of him didn't mind it. A tinier part craved that attention and was secretly elated to hear the younger vigilante ask him constantly. It made the smaller part feel wanted and loved; even if the smaller part knew it was a farce.
And a farce it was.
Or at least that is what the little part of him hoped wasn't the case.
Hey! I guess you're probably all like, "Wait, Sabotage got an update? WHAT?"
Ugh, plot bunnies, m'dears. This one wouldn't leave me alone to write Duality until I had written it down. So... yeah. I'm sorry if this isn't to par with my normal work. I've been stress and not eating like I should and by not eating... I mean not eating. I lost five pounds this week and have been beyond... uh... I wouldn't say depressed but I might have been angry.
It was father's day and my Dad couldn't even talk to me. I... I feel like Conner. Conner Kent, of course. My Dad doesn't even claim me as his anymore...
I hate it. I don't deserve this irrational distaste. Maybe it's because no he has a son? Dad always wanted a son... I guess having a daughter isn't good enough...
Sorry, I shouldn't go on about this, just thought I'd share why I'm so... well... yeah. Sorry to clog this space. Expect another update for this... and maybe Duality if I get to finishing the chapter. But probably not for like... another three days or so. Depends on how write-y I am.
LEAVE REVIEWS. SERIOUSLY. YOU HAVE NO IDEA HOW MUCH THEY MEAN TO ME. I DON'T CARE IF IT'S AN ANON REVIEW. JUST DO IT.
Okay sorry to be a bother.