It was never ending. The cries, the whining. All night and all day, nonstop. It rang right into the ear, high pitched and loud. He'd heard many loud and irritating sounds in his life; Screaming, sirens, laughing, music of the modern era, clapping. But nothing, nothing could ever compare to the cries of a child.
He'd only had his son in his care for a day and already the child hated him. The night had been as smooth as he would have thought, with Lucius and Leslie fully informed of his newly comings as a father. Lucius convinced him to stay home, away from work and cameras for a few days. He'd inform the Wayne Enterprises representative and his personal lawyer to explain the situation to the media.
It would take time, he knew. Less parties, more parks. Less work, more time home. Less night work, more bed time stories.
It was terrifying.
The day had been surrounded with Leslie's incessant questions of the child, Alfred running errands to and fro. Sometime after dinner Bruce had made his escape into the night. The boy had cried endlessly, but he needed to clear his head; He hadn't had a clear moment since Victoria had knocked on his door.
Nothing helped. He heard the cries everywhere he went. Tracking a drug dealer, but his mind drifted to if he was asleep or not. Pushing and shoving crooks into the wall, but he heard the light laugh that came when he would bring him face to face.
He was done for.
The cowl didn't help, it almost made things worse. While he was gone, little hands could be searching for his larger doubles, and eyes could be leaking tears across round cheeks. While he was gone his son could be weeping for him.
It had gotten worse while he was gone. Alfred, looking as exhausted as he was, held a still wailing bundle. Bruce assured him he could handle the baby for what was left of the night.
But babies were a strange thing, only knowing to cry and moan. The sun was nearly rising and he'd only gotten an hour of sleep. He'd tried leaving the boy in his newly furbished nursery, but he only called out. He tried rocking and cooing, swaying and bouncing. Nothing.
The child softly let out whimpers of exhaustion. He lay on his back on one pillow, watching his father with watery eyes. Bruce sat in the armchair, his head in his hands.
He was a hopeless excuse for a father. He couldn't even get his three month old son to go to sleep.
"Aren't babies supposed to sleep all day?" He asked pathetically to the carpet.
A distressed gurgle was all he got.
He looked at the small boy, the baby, struggle. All alone. Arms flailed up and down, legs kicked. Slowly but surely he fell softly onto the mattress face first. Richard released more unhappy whines as he tried to push himself up right.
Bruce watched silently. His head was throbbing, his feet were sore and his eyes were constantly battling against tears of frustration.
"You hate me," He said with a heavy voice. "You hate me already. I'm lousy and pathetic. Can't even get you to stop crying."
Again more whines of distress.
I need you. Don't leave me. I don't want to be alone like you. Let me be with you. Please. I love you.
I love you.
The whines carried him to the infant who already relied so heavily on him. Tiredly, Bruce lifted his son into his arms as he laid himself on the bed. Whimpers were pushed into his chest, but he closed his eyes and slowly stroked back silky black hair.
"Sh, baby." He He placed a soft kiss into the hair. "Please, Dickie."
He'd wondered if he would be giving the child a nickname. His father's uncle's name had been Richard, but the family had referred to him as Dick. It's a wonder that he remembers such things at random moments.
But it worked. The child burrowed himself into his fathers chest, his nose nuzzling against his shirt.
This was it. This was what he needed, what he could do. He would raise his son, make sure the boy wasn't alone. See to it the child wasn't like him.
"I promised you didn't I?" Bruce whispered against Dick's hair. "I won't leave."
As hard as it was going to be, he didn't think he had any other choice.
"I trust your night went smoothly."
Alfred was already in the kitchen, dressed and ready for the day. The smell of eggs and warm biscuits wafted through the dining room where Bruce sat.
The infants softly cooed in his high chair as he softly sucked his fingers. Bruce had been slumping over the table, his hand being the only thing holding his face from the polished mahogany. His mind had been zoning out since Alfred woke him twenty minutes earlier. After finally getting the baby to settle down, he slipped into a comatose slumber, only to be woken a few hours earlier. Alfred had at least given him the benefit of sleeping in a few hours.
Without changing posture, Bruce slowly reached over to tug the fingers from the toothless mouth. Finding a new interest, Dick gave a sloppy laugh as he began teething on the much stronger digits. Bruce felt his last amount of resistance slip.
"I believe the young master would enjoy a more natural meal, master Bruce."
"Hm." Bruce agreed softly.
Alfred gave a short sigh as he watched the man slowly drift back off to sleep. The butler turned to the infant who had began to bounce his tiny feet up and down. Alfred scooped the young boy into his arms, receiving a happy gurgle in return. Smiling in acknowledgment, Alfred handed over a small juice bag into the grubby hands. As the baby softly sucked on the thick straw, Alfred turned to his older charge.
Bruce gave a soft grunt, but did not move.
"Master Bruce, I think it would be best if you returned to your room for a few more hours of rest."
Bruce gave another hum of agreement. When there was yet again no move by the younger man, Alfred made a move to set the babe back in his seat. Bruce slowly pulled himself up, rubbing his face on his way up.
"I will wake you if the young master requires your assistance."
Bruce groaned but stood none the less. With half lidded eyes, Bruce trudged away from the table but returned momentarily to give a hesitant kiss to the top of his son's vegetable covered nose.
As the billionaire dragged himself up the stairs, Alfred gave a knowing look down at the boy who was meaningfully tugging and pulling at the plastic container that was now empty. Alfred smiled as he pulled the boy higher up onto his hip.
"come now master Richard, I believe your father would enjoy some homemade cookies, don't you agree?"
Hey guys! Once again, sorry for updating late. I'm sorry this is short, but I really wanted to try and get a chapter out for you guys and start getting the story rolling so I can upload the cute fluff to come :) Hopefully more will be up soon!