And this is it folks! This takes place about four months after the previous chapter and has the last bit of explanation while giving hope for the future. Enjoy!
Alfred really didn't want to interrupt. Could be hazardous to his health, not to mention his suit. The way Jason and Dick were going back and forth throwing water balloons at each other was dangerous enough without all the flips and tricks they were pulling on the side. Cass was having fun splashing buckets onto the older boys and leaving them on people's heads at random. Tim snuck around, dodging more than throwing, and using the hose to attack his family at random. Damian ran in between everyone, slapping them with sponges. They were careful not to step on him or knock him down, but were brutal to each other.
And they loved every minute of it.
One thing all the Wayne children had in common besides their hair color was their competitive fighting spirit. Didn't help that their father encouraged them to learn to actually fight, teaching them numerous skills to save themselves and others from danger. And they all loved using these techniques against each other. Even without supersoakers or squirt guns, it was a warzone on the northwest lawn where the children played. The garners were going to love how they tore up the terrain.
Though this event made the children happy, and even helped remove Dick's fear of water, there was a good reason he had to interrupt. Guest arrived. Unusual guests if they were any other family, but considering who they considered their aunts and uncles, these would be cousins. Estranged ones at the moment, but knowing these children, not for long. Alfred had them waiting in the sitting room.
"Master Richard!" At the butler's voice, all but the toddler stopped what they were doing to look at him. Dick was getting up after slipping in the grass, his shirt covered in mud and twigs. Jason just picked up Tim to drag him to a mud hole they made earlier while Cass was restocking on balloons. It was almost humorous seeing them freeze like that with Damian running between them all. "You have visitors waiting in the parlor. Please remember to use the towels. And Master Timothy, please remember to remove your traps before entry. Mr. Lavern is not fond of water explosions while trimming the daffodils."
The younger boy grinned sheepishly as his brother put him back down, groaning slightly. Their game was over. Dick grinned at the old man. "Sure thing Alfie. I'll take care of them in five. Come on Dami! Let's get you cleaned up."
"NO!" The smallest of them protested loudly, stomping his foot. "I wanna pway more!"
"We can play this again tomorrow," he stated evenly, picking up the kid and taking a hose to rinse him off. "Until then, we can bug these new people."
"After a quick cleaning," the butler insisted before turning back to the door. "Do not tract mud across my nice clean floor." He pointed once to the towels waiting for them then disappeared inside. He was a true master at the disappearing act.
"But I wanna pway more!" Damian pouted, struggling against his brother for a moment before Dick pinned him between his legs.
"Later. Come on, let's get you washed up." Though the kid struggled against being rinsed off for a minute, Dick made a game out of it, letting him spray him with the hose a few times as well. The teen flinched for a moment against the water hitting him, but nothing more. It took him some time to not have a panic attack every time water hit him, but having a water fight with his siblings every couple days over the summer helped. This activity was therapy along with fun, and it didn't look strange should guests arrive. There were a few times some joined in, after they told them the whole 'no guns of any sorts' rule in the house. Rule 2 could be a royal pain in social circles.
As soon as Damian was mud and grass free, he wrapped a towel around him and started rinsing off his own body. Even took off his shirt to keep the mud there out of the house. Hopefully the visitors weren't the shy type, or a hot chick. He really didn't want Barbara to see his new scars either, but he doubted it was her. Alfred identified individuals if they knew them well. Ideas of who came over and hadn't tried to join them started mounting in his head.
Dick jerked out of his revere as the toddler ran inside after a green blur. The others stopped their cleanup in surprise, nearly gaping at him darting inside. The kid was still wet in his swimsuit. "Ah crap! Dami!"
Instantly the acrobat was running after him, taking a couple spare towels along the way. The other three exchanged knowing looks and smirked while they disappeared inside. As was typical whenever they were left to their own devices, Dick was the one watching out for the youngest, even from Alfred's shrewd eye. He was running after him, towel in hand and scooping him up into a hug as soon as he caught up.
"Come here you!" Damian shrieked in happiness while his brother smothered him in that towel affectionately. He laughed too as he brought him around to look the kid straight in the eye. "No wet feet on Alfred's nice clean floor. Even for…Wait, did you say green kitty?"
"Green kitty, see?" The tyke managed to get an arm out of his hold and pointed to where the cat went. The two of them chased each other into the parlor, right where his guests were supposed to be. And were. Before them, staring at them in surprise, were the Teen Titans. All in civies, but that didn't matter with most of them. Three-quarters of the team couldn't have secret IDs if they tried. The remaining weren't really that careful with them either. One happened to be Beast Boy.
"Green kitty indeed…" Dick bit back his embarrassment when he spotted them. He was just in his swim trunks, still wet from rinsing off all the mud and grass. He was planning on grabbing a fresh shirt before seeing anyone, hiding his many scars and how well toned his muscles became. If they ignored the markings, he was eye-candy of the highest grade, and he did not want the attention right then. Especially since Alfred was also there, with his disapproving frown at them being wet and inside. "Ah shoot…"
"Indeed Master Richard."
"Ahhummm…" He gave a sheepish grin. "Right… I'll… Um… Be right back. Sorry Alfred!"
Instantly the teen took off running out of the room with his younger brother in hand and his face turning redder by the second. He vaguely heard an apology from Alfred to the team for both his and Damian's actions as he dashed up the stairs, skipping steps constantly. The kid gave another squeal of excitement but also protested as they reached the hallway where their rooms were. "I wanna pway with kitty!"
"You can play with kitty when you're dry. Jason! Thank G-d!" Their brother just made it up the other stairs, ditching the rest of the cleanup in favor of a nap. Dick wasn't going to let that happen quite yet; he nearly shoved Damian into his hands. "I've got to handle the Titans."
"Titans?" The confused look on Jason's face was almost priceless. "They're here?"
"Finish drying up Dami okay?" Dick gave him a quick grin then darted away to his room. He had less than a minute to grab a shirt and spare towel for himself before running back down stairs. Wet shorts sucked but he was stuck with them for a bit.
"Wai-Don't I get any say in this?!" The younger teen looked back and forth between where Dick went and the toddler shoved into his hands.
"NOPE!" He practically barreled into his room and grabbed the first shirt he could find and pulled it over his head as he ran into his bathroom for a minute. Running out and tugging the Tee over his head while having a comb in his mouth and a towel barely hanging on over a shoulder, he nearly collided with Cass coming up to change out of her wet wear. "WHOA! Sorry Cass!"
"You're not getting away with this Dickhead!" Jason shouted after him, still standing in the hallway with a wet kid in his arms.
"Rule 6!" The racing acrobat flashed a grin at him before turning the corner and disappearing. "And you bet I am!"
Dick imagined his brother giving him the finger but didn't doddle. Quickly running the comb through his hair then tossing it to one of the many tables decorating the manor, he rushed to the slanted part of the banister to slide down it on the towel. He wasn't about to risk the adults' disapproval at his swinging from the chandelier again, not for this. The Titans were here and he wanted to be on his best behavior for them. Well, most of them.
Soon he was back on the ground floor, wrapping the towel around his waist before entering the parlor to officially greet his guests. "Hey there! Welcome to Wayne Manor. Sorry for taking so long and seeing that before. Damian has a thing for cats and we were just outside playing water tag. Um… Do you need any… Oh." He spotted the glasses of lemonade around the room and that they were already seated. Awkwardness settled further into his stomach. Everything he was taught to do as a good host was taken care of. "I see Alfred's already taken care of that… Ah… Heh… Nice to see you all again. Um… Alfred said you wanted to talk to me. Am I in trouble?"
"Depends." Roy stepped forward, trying to act serious. "Have you been on your best behavior Mr. Grayson?"
"Last I checked." Dick wiggled an ankle carrying an official tracking device on it. "The marshals would know if I deliberately got on the wrong side of the fence again."
They noted the anklet, some of them cringing. Even though he managed to avoid any permanent scarring on his record because of his circumstances, he hadn't escaped all punishment for his time as Renegade. Until he turned eighteen next spring, he was doomed to wear that piece of jewelry and under house arrest. Course his range would include school once it started up again, making things a little nicer for him, and the manor was a pretty fun place to be trapped in. Plus the caves and grounds surrounding it helped. He couldn't be bored for more than ten minutes in this place. If he continued to behave and to provide all the intel the prosecutors wanted, he could get the thing taken off early. The catch was him being on permanent retainer for any trial against Slade, and he would gladly testify.
"That only means you haven't been caught Mr. Grayson." The archer tried to look menacing and scary, starting a series of eye-rolls and groans from his friends. Some like Starfire and Donna were worried about how their host would take it.
Dick just rolled his eyes before walking around the couch to sit on it. "Cut it out Roy. I've seen scarier down at Amusement Mile."
"Wait…" Kori stepped closer, not seeing Roy's amusement or the others' surprise. "How is it you—"
"I met Roy Harper a couple years back," he explained, propping his elbows on his knees. "And considering who I live with and what happens in my day to day life, it really wasn't hard."
"Huh?" He lost most of them within the first five seconds. The redhead boys smothered snickers while Dick just rolled his eyes, shaking his head. Though he didn't want to hurt the Titans, he did wish those two had told them the truth like they said they would.
"He called Jason 'Jaybird' when you guys rescued me. Only family or close friends call him that and get away with that. Mostly just me." He ran a hand through his damp hair, thinking this over. "Dead giveaway. And the rest of you don't exactly hide your identities."
The teens gave each other awkward smiles and shrugs. The guy had a point. "So," he started again, his nerves leaving him, "to what do I owe this honor? I didn't think I had any more hearings or trials for a while and the Feds would be picking me up for those." He looked over each of them for a moment, watching their body language around the room. Very few of them knew what to say or do. Looked like Donna was the only one completely sure of herself. Probably the reason why she was their leader. "This would be a really long trip for a social call after all."
"Actually," Donna started, walking around the coffee table between them, "we've been talking and decided to ask you to join us."
"What?" Confusion ruled the teen's face. What was she really asking?
"What Wonder Girl is asking is," Raven started, smiling ever so slightly, "how would you like to become a Teen Titan?"
His hands fell in his lap. He stared at them in shock, jaw agape. She was really asking him to join? Seriously?! "What?"
"As an Honorary Titan," Donna specified. She immediately tried to swing it her way, clarify what she was saying. She must have had lessons from her sister because she was doing a fairly good job. Things were clicking in his head as she spoke, but not quite the way she wanted it to. "You wouldn't have to join us in the field or in Jump… ah… San Francisco, but you'd have access to the tower, our files, a communicator, and could call for help at any time. It's actually a great honor and we already have a few others all over the world."
"This is because Slade escaped custody isn't it."
The team exchanged worried glances all around him, becoming antsy. "Where did you…" "How did you…" "That's not confirmed." "We just found…"
"When did you find out?" Wally stepped up next to him, curious. "We barely learned about it this morning."
Dick smirked knowingly at him, a little worn. "About an hour after it was reported. Bruce is wired into Interpol. Last I heard they were still looking into how he broke out. They think he had help, which is likely since they never did find Wintergreen.
"If you're worried about him coming after me for revenge or something, don't. So long as I'm in Gotham, he can't touch me. The security here's better than Fort Knox, and Gotham's my home town. If you thought I was trouble in San Fran, it's nothing compared to what I can do here.
"And I'm not going to join him either." He sighed as he reassured them. "I have PTSD, not Stockholm Syndrome. After everything he put me through and what he did to my family and everyone else…" He closed his eyes a moment then reopened them, glaring hatred so pure he would burn the table to dust if he had powers. "If I ever see him again, he's a dead man. And I'm pretty sure he knows that. I wouldn't have worked for him if I had a choice back then."
They stood in silence for a moment, a heavy atmosphere nearly suffocating them. What happened nearly four months ago weighed heavily in their minds, none more so than Dick's. He meant every word he said and they knew it. Raven sat down because of the wildly strong emotion coming from him, and non-empaths were feeling like doing the same. Thankfully Donna broke the mood. "Well Dick, truth be told, we've been discussing this long before his escape. Even before we met you."
"What?" He jerked his eyes up to look at her, confused.
She grinned at him. "There's this video on youtube of—"
"Oh not that again!" Dick fell backwards into the cushions, running a hand through his hair with a groan. "That stupid video is what got me noticed by Slade in the first place! And it was Boy Wonder, not Wonder Boy. Ryder really screwed it up."
"Does it really matter?" Roy asked, taking off his sunglasses and plopping down in a nearby seat.
"To me." He sighed heavily. "It was what they called me at Haly's Circus. Their little boy wonder. And that costume was based off of what I wore back then, when I was eight. Really a bad idea."
"Well what you did that night was brilliant," Donna interrupted. On the spot, Dick looked away embarrassed.
"Bruce would say differently," he murmured, now agreeing since there were so many consequences for his actions that night. What he did was dumb, on so many levels.
"You saved lives back then," she tried to tell him. "And you did it so well… You faced those guys without flinching and everyone came out fine. Everything was recovered. And I saw that look on your face back then. You enjoyed every minute of it."
Dick closed his mouth, looking at the ceiling in thought. Yeah, he had enjoyed it, all of it. It was what happened afterwards that he hated. The Amazon continued. "The only reason we didn't try to recruit you back then was because Speedy said you'd never agree because of your Dad."
"Might have," he offered, thinking out loud. "Probably would have joined up just to tick him off back then. Lots of stupid teenage angst."
"And when you appeared as Renegade-" The guy flinched at the name slightly, really hating it, "-we talked about trying to turn you. We wanted you to change sides back then, especially since you saved Aqualad from that fire and Beast Boy from the train."
"The train was my fault," he muttered sourly, getting an eye roll from Gar. He was going to keep blaming himself for everything wasn't he.
"We knew you weren't really evil." She gave him a kind smile, coaxing him. "We just didn't know why you were working for the bad guy or stealing. When Kid Flash explained things to us, what you were really doing, I knew you were just like us. A teenaged hero trying to break free from someone's shadow."
'Don't I know it.' Dick looked towards the stairs not too far off and the direction of the study just beyond them. The shadow he was breaking free from was also his safety net. He still had to figure out how to grow out of one and keep the other.
"Only difference is," she continued explaining, "your mentor was someone who believed the opposite of what you did, while all of ours believe the same things as us. We saw that in you and thought it'd be a good idea to have you on our side. That we could even be friends. Won't you consider becoming a Titan?"
He blinked at her for a moment, then looked at the others. Some didn't seem to care while others seemed annoyed. Cyborg certainly wasn't convinced, and Aqualad and Beast Boy seemed to be on the fence. Roy and Wally's forced back smiles were kinda annoying (those two were loving his internal squirming) but Raven's ever so slight encouraging smile (one only recognizable because of his years with Bruce) made up for it. Starfire and Donna's confident ones made him feel a little guilty. They were ready to trust him so easily. And he…
"Are you sure that's such a good idea?" He fidgeted in his seat, not looking at her eyes. "I mean, I beat each one of you pretty quickly back then."
"You caught us off guard!" Wally jumped at his defense. At one point he wouldn't have defended him but after four months of being the unofficial League/Titan liaison, he got the guy's full story and knew he wasn't evil. Plus he actually got to know him pretty well. "And with Slade's bag of tricks you could—"
"That's the thing; it wasn't his bag of tricks I used." Dick cringed back at their surprised looks, guilt setting in. "They were mine. All of them. We make a game of it here. Every so often when we're bored at dinner or in the car, we try to come up with ways to take down different members of the Justice League. Hypothetically," He added quickly, an apologetic look in his eye. "Like I said, it's a game here. We try to come up with crazy creative plans, but we also look at what their enemies did and try to repeat their successes.
"Like that putty glue thing I used on you and Beast Boy." He pointed between the speedster and changeling. "That was based off of the Trickster's gloppy hero trap a few years back. I know about Atlantian physiology so I knew how to knock you out without permanent damage or hurting myself too badly." He gave Garth an apologetic look, getting antsy as he looked over to Vic. "I learned a lot about computers and robots from my little brother and from Wayne Tech visits when I was bored, so taking you down like that was pretty simple. I knew you could easily be repaired later. Bruce told me about magicians and their need for talking to do their spells," he switched over to Raven. "So all I could figure was preventing you from talking or making something else more important. And Donna," he gave her his most apologetic look, "we all had to learn to get out of ropes and stuff. Tim actually figured out how to get undo your Amazon knot a long time ago. The only person I hadn't figured out how to beat was Starfire."
"What am I? Chopped liver?" While the others gaped at him in surprise, Roy folded his arms and pouted.
Dick gave him a slight apologetic glare. "Roy, you've had your apologies all summer. And I told you, your dependency on a bow will get you killed. You need to widen your arsenal, not to mention improve your armor and fighting technique."
"I know," the cheeky archer started, grinning slightly, "and I've been working on that thanks to you. I just like teasing you about it. We've all gotten better since then because you royally tanned our hides. Which is why we need you."
The acrobat blinked at him in confusion. "You lost me."
"It's actually pretty simple." The redhead leaned back in his seat, grinning at him. "You saw holes in our defenses, our flaws, and exposed them. But you didn't cause any permanent damage. Well not to us. That sign got mutilated."
"I always thought it was tacky," he murmured, not wanting to interrupt.
"It is. The ones Ollie commissions are just as bad. I mean, who wants to—"
Donna gave a slight cough, gaining their attention again. Roy grinned apologetically at her for falling into their usual habit of commenting and complaining about the things their guardians while also defending them. The archers had a love-hate relationship lately while Dick and Bruce were making every effort to work through their issues. Helped that the man was right at his side defending and supporting him through his whole ordeal and they wanted things to work out. But they were sidetracking, badly.
"Thing is Dick," she continued, "we learned a lot from those fights. Not even our mentors or all our training together could see what you did. It was like you were training us. In each of those fights you were trying to get away or forcing us to retreat, not kill us. And the way you incapacitated Raven at each of those fights—"
"I still don't know how that happened," he interrupted, confused for a moment. They got it mostly right.
"You're very emotional," Raven explained. "I'm an empath. I reflexively absorb the feelings of others, and yours blew me over. I can only take so much negative emotion before 'shutting down'. And while in Slade's power—"
"I had so much of it, I blew you out of the water without trying." Dick rubbed his forehead as those pieces fell into place. He was so angry, scared, and guilt ridden back then, he became physically sick after each heist. That guy royally screwed him up. "Sorry about that. If I knew, I would have tried to bridle them better. Your file didn't say anything about that."
"File?" The Titans exchanged looks while he raised an eyebrow at them. He looked over to Wally who clearly was thinking the same thing as Roy. Neither of them had considered a file on the Titans. Garth though stepped forward for clarification. "Slade has files on us?"
"Probably," Dick admitted, looking back to the redheads after a moment, "but I wouldn't know. He kept me away from computers so I wouldn't try to get in touch with anyone. Had to have a connection to keep the probes hanging over my head all the time and to get up-to-date intel. I'm talking about B's files. He has one on everyone in the crime fighting community, even me and my very short career. It's quite interesting reading his analysis once in a while, especially the one on himself, which goes to so many levels of weird. Has everything on criminals too, all the ones the League's fought at least. He's thinking about adding your rogue gallery to the archives in case they cross with his cases again."
"You know he gave you the 'go ahead' at that party right?" The slight glare Wally and Roy received made them both sheepish. A few weeks after he returned to Gotham the League founders and those two were invited to a 'welcome back' party for Dick. That was when the two of them learned most of their identities and some secrets were spilled between mentors and protégés, particularly about the mysterious B. Donna and Garth had other things to do that night and Bruce was still iffy about the rest of them, but Roy finally got the questions he had for years answered. Everyone else still had their questions.
Wally gave a sheepish shrug matching Roy's awkward grin. "We thought it'd be better if you or he shared instead of us. He really has a file on me?"
"He was the first person your uncle called when you got your powers." Dick shook his head, smirking slightly to himself before looking to the others. "B's the main financier and information hub of the Justice League," he explained to the newer heroes who had no League connections. "He also takes care of clearing up other people's financial contributions (like Aquaman's doubloons and Wonder Woman's artifacts), does the hacking and tactical planning for their missions, covers for their secret identities, even securing day jobs, and is their lead detective all while inside the safety of his cave. He was once known as Batman, but these days he's just Bruce."
The teens all looked at each other, some following everything while others like Kori were lost in the explanation. The red haired boys though tried to give them reassuring smiles, confirming what the guy said. Cyborg tried to get some clarification. "Bruce? As in…"
"Bruce Wayne. Yeah." The shock on the majority of their faces was almost priceless. "My dad. Which explains why the League was so hot on my trail when I was kidnapped. I was there when the League was formed. It happened here and in the dining room, that way." He pointed down the hall not too far away. "I was twelve. We had to order in express pizzas to make up for Flash's appetite. And we still didn't get a slice. I learned the Batman secret when I was eight, and shortly after he retired to raise me. Then the family kept growing. He helped form the League in order to protect all of us and Gotham."
As it sunk in, more and more about his actions made sense. No wonder he could take them down. If he was raised by Batman -a legend in their circles- and grew up knowing the League, he would know the ins and outs of fighting, tactics, and how to handle them. Even how to handle Slade. Wait… Donna took a hesitant step forward. "Does Slade know—"
"No." Dick shook his head, some relief in him. "He doesn't really know who he took. All he knows is what he saw on Halloween. Well, he knows now that Bruce taught me how to fight personally but that's about all. I don't think he even suspects I have a personal connection to the League."
"That you're more like us," she started, a light donning in her eyes, "than he ever knew."
That brought a smirk to his face. "Yeah, I really am. Had Bruce stayed in the game," he looked over to Roy, "I probably would have been the first."
As the words soaked in, they realized it was true. The guy was seventeen. If he knew who Batman was at eight and fought at his side then, he would have had nine years of experience by then. Imagining this guy with that much time in the field, when he only had a few months of endurance training with Slade and only lessons from his father, and beat them so easily, they knew he could have been their leader and shining example. It was almost terrifying how much potential this guy had.
"That's even more of a reason you should be one of us." They all looked at Donna again, her perseverance encouraging. She would not be waved. All he had told them only made the picture more complete. He was born for this world, raised in it while kept from participating. It was about time he took a more active role. "Dick, I'm not saying you have to come into the field with us. Or live in the tower with us. Just that you don't have to be alone.
"The reason we formed the Titans was to break away from our mentors and make a place for ourselves. To grow up together without the judgment of others. To be friends and partners. I want you to become a Titan for yourself more than for us. If you need anyone your age to talk to, someone who'll understand where you're coming from, we'll be here for you. We can back you up whenever you need help, and I'm sure now more than ever that you'll be able to help us more than anyone."
"YEAH!" Wally clapped his hands at the idea. "You could be like the B of the Teen Titans! My uncle said he helps out a lot more than anyone gives him credit for."
"Yeah, he does." Dick looked over Donna and the rest again, seeing them starting to come together in this idea now. He kinda liked it, but he still had his doubts. Being friends with the Titans, being counted among them, it was like a dream come true. But…
"So how about it?" Their leader took out a communicator, offering it to him. "Want to become a Teen Titan?"
He shrunk into himself slightly, doubts about himself plaguing him. Maybe he really wasn't right for the job. Maybe they'd grow to hate him because of all the things he'd gone through with Slade. There were so many thoughts and problems running through his head. "I don't know…"
"You should do it."
At the man's voice, everyone jerked their heads around to the parlor's entrance. Bruce was standing there, a slight smile gracing his lips. He looked at his son with understanding. "I've kept you in the shadows too long Dick. It's about time you had some fun with them. If you want to join the Titans, go ahead. It's not like you'll be running around in a cape and pixie boots because of this."
"You serious?" As his long time father figure nodded his head, all of Dick's doubts flew out the window. A broad grin lit up his face and he instantly flipped over the couch's back and over to him, giving him a quick hug. "Thank you!"
His dad chuckled fondly at his sudden childish actions, returning the embrace before his first born took off back to the Titans. With Batman covering his back, he wasn't scared of anything. He snatched up the communicator, his smile plastered across his face. "You bet I'll be a Titan! Honorary or no, I'll do everything I can to make sure you don't regret this."
"I certainly hope so circus boy." Roy couldn't help but laugh at the scene, giving his friend a slight punch. It was the first time he could talk to someone completely honestly when he knew the 'Bat Secret' and Dick. With the Titans now being in common with them, there was nothing they couldn't talk about. The two normal guys in the group.
"Hey!" Wally joined them as they started converging on their newest member. "Just thought of something. You're gonna need a codename. I mean, the 'Bat Secret' doesn't leave us, right?" He looked once over to the man still standing in the doorway, just watching him. One nod and it was confirmed. "So that means no one but us can even know you're one of us. You're gonna need an alias."
"I got one." Dick grinned, looking once at Bruce teasingly. "Nightwing."
"Oh boy." The man shook his head, trying to suppress a smile. Figures.
Starfire cocked her head, confused. "Nightwing? Please explain. What is a 'Night-wing'?"
He just grinned at her and the others, equally confused. "Superman used to tell us stories from Krypton whenever he babysat and we didn't con him into movie nights. My favorite ones were about Nightwing, a hero there who was a lot like Batman."
"Superman babysits?!" was about all Beast Boy and Cyborg got, making the acrobat laugh.
"Yeah he does. Makes a wicked apple pie too." As he laughed at fond memories, some of his new friends realized they just got someone who could blackmail or embarrass the entire League on their side. Over all, this guy was a gold mine. He was meant to be one of them.
Bruce slipped out of the room a minute later, letting the team get acquainted with his eldest. Thinking back to all the years he spent with the boy, all the things he went through, it was a bit hard to let him go like this. Well, having friends he could be 100% honest with was worth it. The dark knight had allies, friends, his age he could be honest with (if he wanted). It was about time Dick did too. The Titans specifically said they wouldn't pull him into the crossfire or put him in the field. Honorary didn't mean active duty. His boy was still safe.
Still, Dick had lost several months of his life because of a madman. He gave himself up as a sacrifice for the sake of his family. But there was another definition of that word, one people forgot in loom of the horror of loss. Sacrifices were given up to a higher purpose, in hopes of receiving more blessings than what they had initially. Dick sacrificed his freedom, his time and everything he stood for in the stead of his family. After four months of hell, and several more for recovery and legal affairs, he gained back everything, and one of his greatest dreams.
He was now a Titan. He had good friends and allies. He had his family, his future, and his freedom. Robin was flying free.
END (For reals this time)
A/N:*bows* thank you, thank you. Sacrifice is officially over. With this chapter, we have established that Dick is getting better, he's under house arrest, he's happy being back with his siblings, and is now codenamed Nightwing. He doesn't get to fly for a least a year though so don't get your hopes up... yet. XD As for Slade, he's out to do whatever thanks to Wintergreen whom they never caught, but will not be coming after Dick for a few years. He knows Dick can't be tamed now, and that he's protected. With the Titans, well in the past four months Dick's become good friends with Roy and Wally, and they are all eager to have him on the team. Isn't that grand? Best of all is Bruce's approval and understanding of everything. It took nearly nine years for Dick to finally get into the crime fighting community. It'll take another though before he takes wing. X3
So! Just because Sacrifice is done doesn't mean the world or concept is over. Besides filling in the gap between the end and the epilogue, I'm also working on some HIVE academy days that would take place during Sacrifice. I also have plans to write DNB adaptions of all the major arcs in Teen Titans (they won't be as long) so if you wanted more, there's more coming.
Anyway, Thank you all for reading Sacrifice, the extended version. Please watch and read Daddy, Not Bats in the Batman comics section for everything before it and everything after. This has been a lot of fun but I am so glad this one's done! Fave the story and take it off your watch lists please so you don't have a long one like mine. . See ya next time! ^^V