Author's Notes: I think I'm going to cry! After five years of this fanfiction I have to let it go. I was like, fourteen when I wrote this thing – considering I didn't publish it till much later. Wow, that seems like forever ago! Oh well, it's done – and I feel good about it. I'm very pleased, this fanfiction is my best friends of fanfictions. I won't lie. We go way back – haha. Thanks for those who were along for the ride, I had so much fun! As of this point the fanfiction is over, but who knows … lets see if I can stay away from my baby fanfiction. ;-)

"Life's like a road that you travel on when there's one day here and the next day gone. Sometimes you bend, and sometimes you stand, sometimes you turn your back to the wind. There's a world outside ev'ry darkened door where blues won't haunt you anymore. Where the brave are free and lovers soar, come ride with me to the distant shore.Knock me down get back up again. You're in my blood; I'm not a lonely man. There's no load I can't hold - roads are rough, this I know. I'll be there when the light comes in, just tell 'em we're survivors."

Life is a Highway Rascal Flats

Oh Silent Prayer of My Thoughts

By: The BatThing

Chapter Twenty:

Bruce Wayne awoke with a start. He lay for a moment, growing aware of his surroundings then slowly sat up with a groan. His head was pounding and he could feel that his throat was a bit scratchy. Bruce got up and made his way to the bathroom, getting a drink and splashing some water across his face. Staring at his reflection he blinked, wondering what time it was.

A sound came from outside his door and the man stepped into the room, curious. Saul? Or maybe Tim was up? The billionaire bit his lip, reminding himself that he trusted the teenager, and not to jump to conclusions – but still. Bruce made his way to the door and entered the hall, headed towards his ward's room. He found the door slightly open, so he entered unannounced.

It was dark, but a light was coming from the bathroom – casting a rare decoration of shadows across the room. So – Tim was up. The billionaire considered calling out to the boy, but the urge to just sneak – to make double sure – was so strong. He found himself carefully headed towards the bathroom. Once he was close enough he stepped into view. "Tim?"

The boy was sitting on the edge of the counter – his back facing Bruce. The sudden unexpected voice caused Tim to spin around, almost loosing his balance. He jumped down, holding his left wrist and looking surprised. "What are you doing here?" The teenager looked awful. He was wearing wet pajama bottoms and a drenched sweat jacket. His whole expression looked drenched – rings were around his eyes, a bit of blood across his cheek and a few promising marks telling of future deep bruising.

"What the hell happened to you?" Bruce walked towards the boy, lifting a hand to touch the wounded face. "Who did this to you?"

"It's a long story. I don't want to talk about it right now."

"Well, I think we need to talk about it. You look like you just got back from a gang fight – if you could explain that would be nice."

Tim studied the man, not wanting to make up a story. He didn't want to plant another cover story, not when he just realized that … he was looking into Bruce's face. The man who didn't remember, the man who had seen his own child killed before him – tortured before him. Tim shook his head, feeling tears start. "I broke my wrist. It hurts."

"Oh god. I'll get Saul, we'll call up Leslie." Bruce hurried out of the room, leaving Tim. The boy stood, numb and in deep thought. If Bruce remembered, if Tim forced his mentor to remember that would mean that he would remember what made him hurt so bad – what had made him forget. I can't do that to him. I can't let him remember. He held his wrist gently, as if it were the world to him.

Bruce was back in the room in just a matter of seconds. "How about you have a seat till Leslie gets here – you can tell me what happened."

"I was out with some friends. We were messing around – dumb stuff – and messed with the wrong guys. I – I'm sorry." Tim didn't move to sit down. He kept standing, staring with a blank look at his wrist.

"God Tim, I thought that you said I didn't trust you? I thought you told me that you were with your friend because you wanted to talk with him about Dick's death. Was that a lie?" The man didn't actually sound that upset, rather a bit shocked.

"No, I was talking with him tonight, and he wanted to cheer me up. I guess we were just being dumb." It was like reading lines, the boy spoke with a slow monotone voice, almost unfeeling.

Bruce was quiet for a moment. "Are you alright?"


"You look sick."

"I'm just cold."

"Then maybe you should change into something dry?"

"I'll wait till Leslie patches me up."

Bruce got to his feet. "Let's go downstairs to wait, ok?" He watched as Tim walked into the hall – staring at his limp wrist – and wondered if the boy was actually telling the truth. "Does it hurt?"

Tim shook his head. "It'll be fine."

Leslie came and was silent as she explained the breakage and did her best to wrap it comfortably, securing it for healing. Bruce was thanking her, but she didn't seem pleased with much of anything. Her hand went down on Tim's shoulder and she bent low. "Come visit me tomorrow – alright? It's my free day, and I'd like to catch up." She nodded, signaling that she meant it.

"Right, I'll be there."

"You do that, or I'll be forced to call Bruce about it." She gave Bruce a small smile. "I'll see you later, take care."

The silence that ensued seemed too much for Saul. He cleared his throat and approached the two. "Perhaps it would be best for Master Timothy to rest? I would assume he is tired after tonight's activities."

Tim lifted his head at Saul, peering at the man with confused eyes. The butler's words had been out of duty, yes, but perhaps he felt sorry for the boy? Thinking on it didn't last long. The boy decided he didn't care either way. "I'll see you guys in the morning."

Bruce glanced at Saul and nodded towards the boy. "Alright, but when you get home from school tomorrow – we'll talk about what happened a little more. I'm not saying I don't believe you, but I just want to – hmm – want to understand more fully."

"Goodnight, Master Timothy."

"Night Tim."

The boy nodded his head as he walked up the steps, climbing them as if in a dream. His eyes appeared blind to everything, drugged almost. And when the sound of his door closing was heard, Bruce turned to Saul.

"You think I can trust what he says?"

Now it was Saul's turn to look confused. He quickly regained his stature and gave a short nod. "I am not sure I can judge the young master with what I know, Master Bruce."

"He's just been so mysterious, I feel like he's hiding something, but then – then I don't want to think that. I want to be able to trust him, he's supposed to be my 'son' and I don't even know what to think about him." Bruce lowered into a chair and lifted a hand to his head. "Maybe I'm just overanalyzing."

"The young Master came home with a broken wrist and some bad bruising. Perhaps it is safe to worry about him – I believe there would be no harm in that. It is a father's job to protect their children – is it not?" Saul didn't sit, but he looked itchy, uncomfortable. "Shall I get some coffee for you, Master Bruce – and we can continue this conversation?"

"That would be great Saul – thank you." Well, Bruce had nobody else he could talk to, so why not the butler? An ache gripped his heart as he thought of Alfred. Even though he didn't Dick and Tim, he did remember Alfred. Though, seeing as most of his thoughts seemed scattered, he wondered if his memories were even true in that area.

Saul returned with the drinks and listened with an understanding and sympathetic ear. He gave his advice when asked, and sometimes even when it wasn't asked for. Bruce seemed to appreciate the whole ordeal, but soon he told the butler goodnight and headed back upstairs for his room. He paused at his door and then lowered his head at the sound of a stifled voice coming from Tim's room.

The billionaire walked towards the door and pressed his head close, listening. At first there wasn't anything to hear, but then – out of the dark and into the World came a small high pitched scream – apparently being held back by some sort of object.

Tim was crying?

Bruce bit his lower lip, listening to the hidden sobbing. A voice, muffled from sobbing and – probably a pillow – spoke.

"God, idiot! Idiot. Idiot." It grew louder with each time until it was clear. Then a loud slap almost and then the sound of someone collapsing. At this point Bruce swung open the door, worried, and found Tim blinking at the light from the hall and sitting oddly on the floor. His eyes were glaring, filled with tears that were relentless.


The boy tried to get up, angry with being found out, but collapsed back down and let out a pitiful cry that would break any heart. Tim shook his lowered head and then jerked it back up. He spoke with a voice that was not one Bruce was used to hearing. "Get out of my room."

"What's wrong, Tim?"

"I said to get out of my room!"

"No." Bruce stepped forward and Tim flung back, not standing but arching away. "God, please just tell me Tim!"

"I'm sick of telling you things!" Tim growled, ignoring the wet droplets that were rolling down this face. "I don't want to tell you anything anymore. I don't want to have to tell you thing!"

The man got on his knees before the boy, confused. "How – how am I supposed to care about someone I don't even trust. Someone who won't even tell me who they are?"

Tim shook his head. "Don't care about me! Don't! It's better if you just let me leave forever. Let me leave!"

"That's what you want?"



Silence and Tim dropped his head again, body shaking with the horrible feeling of despair. He looked back up, blue eyes meeting his mentors and broke a heart wrenching sound and threw himself at the man, arms hugging Bruce's neck and face burring in the shoulder.

Bruce released a gasp of surprise, almost unable to believe what happened – but the arms pulling around his neck were real. He returned the hug, not sure what was happening, and somewhat scared. "Tell me what's wrong."

"D-don't let emotion get in the way." Tim stuttered, lifting his head and forcing back his tears as he looked at Bruce. Don't let this ruin everything, just leave already. Bruce is so close to discovering …and that could mean that he'd remember. I don't want him to hurt, not like this, not like this. Please, don't ever let anyone hurt like me. Tim held his hands to his chest, curling up on the floor, not caring that his mentor was watching. You're strong, you're so strong. I believe in you, I believe that you can get up and leave before any more pain is caused."

"God, Tim, god." Bruce. "SAUL!"

Tim kept to himself, arms tightly against his chest and thinking to himself. Get up and leave, run away. I have to train, train so you can become so much stronger, train till you can protect the city and everyone in it. So many people died in the bombing, Dick, Alfred, and Barbara were murdered, Annika's family, Justin … Justin.

Saul entered the room, looking surprised. "Whatever is the matter?"

"I don't know, Saul, I don't know anymore! He was crying, then I came in and he told me to leave him forever, then – then he started to cry again. I asked what was wrong and he … he said 'Don't let emotion get in the way.' Then he just curled up like this and … god, Saul. I think we better call Leslie, something is terribly wrong."

Saul nodded, seeing the panic across the man's face. "Directly."

Leslie leaned back against the chair, and shook her head at Bruce. "Stress, Bruce, he's starting to scare even me – I …" She paused, shaking her head and wondering what she should do. Tim wasn't himself. He wouldn't talk to her, he wouldn't look at her, he just lay in his bed, ignoring the woman with all he had. She was on the verge of telling his mentor the truth. Explaining that Tim was Robin, it would clear so much up.

"He's hiding something from me, something important, and I don't know what it is. He acts like he's … not who he is. I don't know how to explain it. I just know that who I see in him isn't really him." Bruce shook his head. "What should I do?"

"Current situations have been hard for him. You said you have a psychiatrist that he sees – keep that up." Leslie hated herself for what she was doing. "He's lost everything dear to him, and perhaps is afraid to trust you considering that … considering you don't remember him. It will take time, Bruce."

The man looked devastated. He already figured what she was saying. He wasn't an idiot. Tim's distrust in the man had been obvious from the beginning. There had been a hope that maybe Leslie would make things all better, after all – she was a doctor. "I've considered the possibility that this isn't the best environment for him. Leslie, I can't lie – I don't love him. I know I'm supposed to, and I care, but I have no real attachment to the boy. I've thought that maybe if he started fresh, away from me, then things might be better. He'll always have my money of course, I'll pay for what needs to be paid for."

Leslie shook her head. "No, Bruce – don't do that to him. I know you might find it hard to believe, but he has a lot of faith that you'll remember him. I wouldn't take that away from him right now. Even though he might seem hopeless, he isn't. It will just take time. Keep doing what you're doing."

"Is there any medication or -?"

"I have anti-depressants, but I'm not going to offer those at the moment. I'd like to talk with him before I can do that. At the moment he appears rather – unwilling to communicate."

"I am sorry about that, he just -." Bruce stopped speaking and looked lost. He couldn't really apologize for Tim, but he did anyway. "Thank you for coming. We'll keep you updated."

Gathering her things the doctor nodded. "You do that, I'll drop by tomorrow to see how he is doing. Goodnight, Bruce."

"Thank you, Leslie, thank you for coming out again."

"Of course, you all are very important to me." She touched his hand with a kind smile. "Things will be better in the morning, just rest."

"Thank you."

Bruce awoke early the next morning, more out of a strange habit then anything. He sat up and blinked at his clock, seeing it was exactly 6:30 am. It was an annoying habit that he was having trouble getting rid of. Throwing the covers off, he paced across the floor, getting ready for a day off of work. He figured that he would spend some time with Tim – see if that would help at all. It was worth a shot, nothing else was working.

Once bathed, dressed, and ready, Bruce made his way to the teenager's room, entering without a warning knock. He figured to find the boy still slumbering away. Though, to his surprise, he found the room empty. The bed was a wreck, and Tim's pajama's laid in a pile near the bathroom door. "Tim?"

Nothing. The boy wasn't anywhere in the room. Turning around, Bruce made his way down the stairs. He found Saul in the kitchen, but no Tim. When asked about the boy, the butler was as clueless as Bruce.

"Perhaps I should call the police? Considering last night's events, I can't help but worry."

"I think that would be a most wise decision, Master Bruce."

So the call was made, sent straight to Gotham City Police Headquarters. Rumor floated around, Bruce Wayne lost his kid. Description: 5"2 fifteen year old with short black hair, blue eyes, fair complexion. That, and he was on his way over to talk with a detective about the matter.

"We're just going to have to turn right back around and go to his place." A cop complained to his partner.

Robin, who had arrived early that morning, seemed oblivious to the gossip though. He sat at the desk, wearing jeans and a navy hoodie, and flipping through the pages of his text books that Bullock had assigned. The detective was currently out of duty, having taken the blame for killing Justin. The boy felt guilty about that. Gordon has questioned him, but Robin simply avoided the questions.

He had made Jim pretty pissed, especially considering he just took off from the hospital. The man had lectured him about the matter, and then kept bothering Tim to tell what had happened – how he got the broken wrist, how he was so bruised up. All he got were shrugs and 'I don't want to talk about it.'

It had been … exasperating to say the least.

"Yo, Gordon wants to see you in his office, kid with the sunglasses." A passing cop peered into the room, looking somewhat annoyed. "He said to put a move on it."

Robin snapped the book shut and got to his feet, lugging his backpack behind him and walking out of the room. He passed the cop in silence, knowing that he was being cold, but not much caring. It wasn't his job to accommodate.

The boy simply entered Gordon's office, no bother to knock, no bother to call out that he was coming in. He was in much too bad of a mood for such formalities. He just entered, like he owned the place. His eyes were downcast, figuring he was going to be lectured once again for not telling Jim everything he knew. And well, he didn't care. He could handle another long talk of disappointment. Tim was learning how to deal with those rather well.

"Is this your boy, Mr. Wayne?" Gordon's word's caught Tim by surprise. He felt his mouth fall open as he saw Bruce sitting at a chair before Jim's desk.

"Timothy!" Bruce was on his feet, towering above the boy, glaring. "What are you doing here."

Tim couldn't speak – he literally couldn't find any words. His mouth was dry, and his tongue seemed to get sticky. He just gazed in awe at the two men, not sure what to be more surprised about. The fact that Jim now knew his identity or the fact that Bruce was about ready to learn his secret.

"You lied to me, Tim! You used my trust! Everything you said has been a lie. There is a lot you're going to have to explain." Bruce turned to Gordon and held out his hand as he shook his head, looking apologetic. "I want to thank you for your help, and sorry that … that we've been so much trouble. Though, perhaps you might enlighten me as to why he was here – and if he comes here a lot?"

"I think that is something Timothy should tell you, Mr. Wayne." Jim made a stressed smile, shaking his hand and releasing just as fast. He was hurting, and it was obvious. "And no need to apologize."

Tim looked at Jim and felt his heart sink. "I – uh - I, um, I-I'm sorry … sorry." He was speaking to Gordon, but Bruce took it as an apology for him.

"You've tried that before, it's lost its effect on me." The man grabbed the boy's upper arm and nodded once more to Jim. He was a bit upset with the commissioner for not telling him more than he had, but there wasn't much to do about that now. "Thank you."

"Of course."

Tim allowed himself to be pulled out of the room, looking desperately at Jim – trying to think of a way he could apologize enough. The door closed, killing the chance. All eyes were on him, and at one point the two passed Montoya, whose smile died the moment she saw Tim's expression and Bruce's glare.

All the way out of the building and into the car, Bruce dragged the boy. Once the doors were closed, he turned to face Tim. "Tell me what the hell you were doing there."

"I work there." Tim whispered, feeling his stomach growing more and more upset. The chance of getting sick was become very likely. He had been found out, there was no more lying, no more sneaking around it. Everything was out in the open. "I work for Commissioner Gordon."

"That's absurd, you haven't time for that – you have school and then you're home." Bruce paused and then cursed. "You don't go to school – do you?"


"And Commissioner Gordon allowed this?!"

Tim looked up into the man's face. "Bruce … he didn't know. He didn't know who I was. He thought I was someone else, which I am, but … I was home schooled there. I had a tutor and everything. I wasn't falling behind in school, in fact, I think I'm ahead now."

Bruce didn't care about that, he was seeing red. "I don't believe this."

"I'm sorry."

"What kind of work did you do for him?!"

"I can't tell you."

"You will tell me."

"I can't."

"Get out of the car, come on." Bruce got out and walked over, pulling the boy out and dragging him back towards the headquarters, ignoring the protests and attempts to get free. He was three times as big as Tim, and much stronger. His clutch wasn't about ready to break. The whole way back to the office, Tim threw a fit practically, gaining everyone's attention.

"LET ME GO! BRUCE!" Tim knew if Bruce found out … then he could possible remember. And if Bruce remembered, well, things would be awful. Bruce would be so hurt, so, so, so fucking hurt. "LET ME GO!"

"What's wrong?" Montoya questioned, seeing the two once more. Her questions was ignored by Bruce, but Tim gave her a desperate look.

"Please, Montoya – Renee, help me." Tim pulled away from his mentor, but it didn't do any good. Bruce turned around and snatched him right back, holding his arm and pulling him forward, towards Gordon's office.

"You need an appointment, sir!" A woman said as they passed her desk. "You can't go in there without an appointment scheduled."

The door opened and Gordon peered out to see what the problem was. He saw Bruce and Tim and sighed. "It is fine, Anna. Come on in."

"Jim! Don't tell him anything. Jim – trust me, please."

The door closed, slammed shut, Bruce was absolutely mad. He glared at Gordon. "Tell me everything or I'll turn you in for this. I'll make you tell me if you don't -."

Gordon lifted his hands. "Mr. Wayne, please sit down."

Tim was dragged over to a seat, and shoved down into it, where he trembled. "Jim, trust me, he can't know. He can't, it's about … it's about Justin and if he finds out then …"

"Timothy here had worked for me for the past few months. I was unaware that he was your ward – Mr. Wayne. Had I known I would have never … anyhow, I didn't know. I took the boy under my care when he told me he had no family to stay with, or rather – I forced him to live with me. I didn't like the idea of him dying simply because he was stubborn."

"What are you talking about?" Bruce was lost already; he didn't understand what was being said. Tim had family! And how could he die?

"Your son – he's Robin."

There was a pause and Bruce shook his head. "What? Who the hell is Robin?"

"You've never heard of Batman and Robin? Timothy is Robin – and I assume that you were … you would have to be …" He looked at Tim, who was covering his face, and then back at Bruce. "You're the Batman – you were the Batman."

"B-Batman." Bruce looked shocked as he leaned back, shutting his eyes momentarily. A fluttering feeling tingled in his stomach, etching slowly, gaining stride until he felt his whole body start to go numb. His thoughts came at such a speed, connecting the dots of this mystery. Tim was Robin. Tim was Robin … that would explain everything. Tim was Robin and … no.

Bruce and Dick were in the cave, the darkness surrounding them - flickering with the light of the candle nearby. It was a pact being made, a bond of blood. "And what is it you want to call yourself?"

Dick's face was upturned, big blue eyes staring with a masked excitement. "Robin."

"Batman and Robin."

Bruce lifted his hands to his face. Batman and Robin – Robin became a man, turned into Nightwing. Tim came into the picture then. And …and he remembered blood all over, Dick's blood. And no tears, though there was fear in the young man's face as he stared at his mentor – slowly being killed. Bruce hadn't been able to save him, he had let his son die – the son that had trusted him to protect him. He had let Dick die. I let Dick die.

"E-excuse me." Bruce got to his feet, pushing away from the chair and looking at Tim for a moment, then leaving the room in a rush. As if he were going to be sick, and couldn't move fast enough.

"I told you not to tell him!" Tim managed to hiss at the commissioner, trembling all the more. "He remembers, god – he remembers everything! What am I g-going to do now?"

Gordon was silent at first, doing his best not to be unfeeling, and doing his best to be a man about the whole situation. He looked at the boy he had considered his son, the boy that had saved him. The boy that had healed him. The boy was going to go away now. "I don't see the problem – if he remembers then that means that you'll -."

Tim shook his head, taking off his sunglasses and glaring at the man. "I told you not to say anything. I – I … I better …" He stood up and left the room, following his mentor. Bruce, god – I'm so sorry. Tim shook underneath the warm hoodie as he made his way out to the parking lot, going to the car and found his mentor there – inside, staring at nothing. Without saying a word Tim opened the door and slipped, then shut the two in the car.

Bruce glanced his way and then back out the window, saying nothing. The silence was more painful than the whole time the boy had gone without his mentor. It hurt because he knew how bad Bruce had to be hurting, and that wasn't a pleasant feeling. The knowledge that the person who was supposed to protect you, knowing that they were hurting – it was scary.

But he's back.

Tim felt his body start to shake more rapidly, jaw buckling – making the only noise in the dreaded silence.

"Why didn't you tell me?" Bruce whispered, not looking at the boy.

"I-I dunno." Tim's voice shook as he spoke, scared – so scared. "I didn't want you to hurt. I didn't want you to remember what happened to Dick, Alfred and Barbara. I know, I mean, it was … God, I'm sorry!"

"You've been very strong."

"B-Bruce." Tears were running now as the boy turned and latched his arms around his mentor's neck, pulling himself to the man, his whole body trembling. He was so scared, not wanting to loose the man again. "Please be ok."

Bruce didn't fight the boy, allowing him to cling as he did. It was alright. Closing his eyes, the billionaire released a sigh, moving a hand up to rest on one of the arms around him. "You've been a good solider."

And Tim held his guardian as he had his share of tears over the matter.

Two Weeks Later:

"This is your new home?" Annika was holding Tim's pillow as she, Jim, and Tim walked up the stairs of the Manor. The girl had never seen anything so large in her life. "It's a castle, isn't it?"

"I guess it kind of is." Tim admitted to the girl with a smile. He pushed the large doors open and motioned for the two to enter, and once they were inside he followed behind. "This is my house."

"I don't see why you want to leave us." The girl said in a quiet voice. "I thought we were going to be brother and sister."

Jim dropped a bag he was carrying and looked at Annika. "He still can be, but this is his real home. His dad lives here, so he needs to too."

The girl handed Tim the pillow and watched as an older man came towards her. "Who is that?" She whispered, clinging to Gordon.

"Annika, this is Bruce." Tim said as he nodded in the man's direction. "I live with him now."

"He's big." She whispered to Jim.

"Thanks for coming and brining Tim's things here." Bruce shook hands with Gordon and smile down at Annika in a simple manner. He was glad to see that Jim had this girl with him; it was probably making things easier. The pain Gordon was feeling was obvious, letting Tim go like he was. "You will stay for dinner?"

Jim shook his head at this. "Annika and I agreed to get some Dairy Queen tonight; she's wanted a Blizzard for the last few days. I promised we'd go." A reasonable excuse, mostly real – mostly thought, Jim didn't think he could stand staying any longer. "We had better get going."

Tim moved towards the Commissioner and gave a sad smile. "Thank you, Jim …for everything. Just because I'm leaving doesn't mean it will change things between us. You're … you're still important to me. Nothing changes."

"Of course not." Jim replied with a forced smile. "We'll see you later then. Be sure to call if you need anything."

Annika and he started for the doors, and Tim couldn't stand it. "JIM!"

The commissioner paused.

"I'm sorry." Tim forced himself between Jim and Annika, hugging the man and placing his head against his chest. "I'm sorry I lied. I'm sorry I'm leaving. I'm sorry about Barbara. I'm sorry I've been such a pain in the fuckin' ass, I'm sorry about Bullock getting the blame – I'm sorry I was so mean to you when all you did was care about me and I'm sorry that -."

"Hey, hey – HEY!" Jim stopped the rambling apologizes and pulled Tim away from him. "No need to be sorry, I'm not upset with you at all. I just … I just know I'm going to miss you. Though, it won't be bad – you're going to be happy now, right?"


"And you were right." Jim pulled Tim back into his arm, smiling at Bruce. "He's back, and I think you've earned the right to be happy. I think all of us have, right? It's been a hard time, but it's finally over."

Bruce approached the three, he meet Gordon's eyes. The two were such old friends, such good friends – and Jim had proved his loyalty. "Thank you, Jim. Thank you for taking care of him."

"It has been my pleasure."

Tim smiled then, moving away from Gordon and over to where Bruce stood. He smiled and caught Annika's gaze.

"There you go." The girl said suddenly, smiling right back at Tim with a small squeal. "You're smiling for real! I see it! I see it!"

Bruce looked confused at this, but Tim dropped to his knees, looking at the girl with the same smile. He couldn't help it, happiness surrounded him, and he was so warm. Bruce was going to be ok, Jim was going to be ok, Annika was going to be ok, and he … he was loved. Loved as Tim Drake, who he really was – no more masks, no more secrets. It was all out in the open now, and it was all ok. "You and I are going to need to hang out more, Annika."


"So you can meet the real me."

Annika made a confused face.

Tim took her hand and shook it. "My name is Tim Drake."

She cocked her head and then smiled back at him, starting to shake his hand back. "My name is Annika, Tim."

"It's nice to meet you, Tim." Gordon chimed, kneeling down to see the two and laughing a little. He put an arm around Annika and shook his head in good humor, holding the girl close to him and starting to feel better about the whole ordeal.

Tim saw Bruce looking rather uncomfortable and jumped to his feet, springing right at his mentor with the same smile. He was caught by Bruce, and the man couldn't help but look surprised as he held the boy.

"We're going to be ok, right?"

There was a moment of silence and then Bruce slowly returned the smile. He nodded his agreement. "We're going to be perfectly ok."

Tim lifted his head a little, and nodded. Things weren't perfect yet, things weren't back to a normal routine yet, but things were 'ok'. And the promise his mentor made to him was easy to believe, and so Tim did. Bruce said they were going to be perfectly ok.

So that meant they were.

And Tim kept smiling.


Jester Joker: Thanks so much for the reviews! Yeah, apparently I was pretty obvious he was the bad guy. Darn that! LOL. Oh well, at least I was able to surprise you and have Robin kill him. I don't think that's good, but we'll pretend it is. Thanks so much for the read! Thanks, thanks, and thanks!! XD

Delia Ra'Nar: It was you who suggested the Bat-Glare! I knew it was somebody, I kept searching and searching to see who – and it was you! Annika's name comes from a friend of mine. Actually it's the kids I baby-sit. Their names are Annika and Quinn, lol. So yeah. I love the name Annika, it's so cute. Thanks for always leaving great reviews, I'll miss reading them. You were always great at getting to think about what I should write to make it better. You'd make a good editor I bet, I do, I do. Thanks so much for all the feedback, you're awesome like that. I really do owe you – part of this fanfiction is for you, lol.

Trunksblue: BFF of fanfiction, lol. Yeah, Justin is a sick-o, he's evil like that. I'd say goodbye to you, but I know you from so many places. I'm like a crazy person that you can't get rid of – you know, SON? Well, yeah. Anyhow, thanks for the words, you're always a help at these fanfictions.

Terra89: What is PM? Is that like IM? I wasn't sure. Whatever it is I'll do it, 'cause I'm often bored, lol. Especially now that the fanfiction is done, sigh, I'm sad. Yeah – Justin is insane in the membrane. Luckily he's dead in the city now, ha. Go Harvey indeed, he kicks butt. Thanks for making me laugh, haha, your reviews always were great to read. They kept me on my toes, different reviews are cool reviews. Randomness is accepted!

Chocogirl: Thanks for the kind words – I'm so glad you like it, I'm super glad you like it. Way too glad you like it. HA! Anyhow, I spaced out for a second there when I was typing. Gordon is hot stuff, he's awesome in so many ways. In fact, in the last Batman movie he was the only good thing. I mean, Christian Bale plays an ok Batman, but Jim Gordon was awesome. Let's face it.

JLA Fan: Thanks! Yeah, another chapter another month, lol. Takes me forever to do these things, bleh. Thanks for the review, I'm so happy you liked it. XD I'm happy, happy, joy, joy and dancin'. Keep in touch!

Superfan: Yeah, the start of this really is crappy. I did write it a long time ago, though there isn't much of an excuse there, lol. I'm learning that I really am not the hottest writer, taking this creative writing class and man – talk about writers. They're totally awesome. I bet you're one of those awesome writers, seeing as I had to look up words in your review, lol. I'm dumb like that. Oh well. Thanks for the review – and while I can't ask you to read it, if you do … feel free to E-mail me any comments or suggestions. I'd love to hear them. XD