In celebration, I - of course - had to write some fic. And in doing so, I finally realized what the problem with this fandom is: WAY TOO MANY POSSIBLE PLOT BUNNIES FOR FATHER-FOCUSED STORIES. *headdesk*
Seriously, I had so many ideas for this Father's Day fic, from angsty to fluffy to smutty
But this finally worked out, and it's my first time writing the girls (WOO!), so I hope you enjoy!
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Title: A Typical Holiday
Pairings/Characters: Tim Drake, Dick Grayson, Cassandra Cain, Damian Wayne, Bruce Wayne, Stephanie Brown, Barbara Gordon, Alfred Pennyworth.
Word Count: ~2000
Summary: Bondage, frosting fights, and impromptu hugs? Just another holiday with the Batfamily.
Note: This is set pre-reboot, because pre-reboot makes me happy.
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“This isn’t really how I thought we would spend Father’s Day,” Dick sighed.
Tim grunted, the noise echoing oddly in the darkened warehouse.
“Dick,” he said. “It’s us. Of course this is how we would spend Father’s Day.”
The two of them – Batman and Red Robin, two of Gotham’s finest heroes – were seated back to back in the middle of an abandoned warehouse, bound hand and foot and generally looking worse for the wear. Tim wriggled against Dick’s back, gloved fingers working furiously at the knots that bound their hands together.
“This is totally your fault, by the way,” Tim added.
“My fault? You were the one who was supposed to be on lookout!”
“You were distracting me,” Tim said. “Much as you are now.”
“Fine,” Dick said, shifting slightly to hook his own fingers around the ropes and shove Tim’s fingers away. “If you’re so distracted, I’ll untie us.”
“Hey! I almost had that one,” Tim protested.
“Oh yeah, it feels real loose,” Dick said sarcastically, prodding the knot in question.
Tim pinched Dick’s hand, but fell quiet and let Dick work, thinking back to how the mission went wrong.
It was ridiculous, really. He and Dick had been sent to investigate a drug ring – routine surveillance, nothing too difficult – and somewhere between their usual brotherly bickering and Dick’s teasing, they had managed to walk right into a trap. Tim vaguely recalled a fist connecting with his jaw and arms like steel clamping around him from behind, followed by glimpses of Batman fighting off four large men until one of them got in a lucky shot that knocked Dick out cold. Then something heavy had thudded against Tim’s temple and everything had faded to black.
And then, of course, they had woken up hours later in the dark, tied up and weaponless.
“This sucks,” Tim muttered, slumping against Dick’s back.
Dick paused in his ministrations to squeeze Tim’s fingers.
“Hey,” Dick said. “At least we’re together, right? Clearly those thugs had no idea what they were doing.”
“It’s not that,” Tim said. “It’s just… we had this whole plan, you know? For today.”
“I know, kiddo,” Dick said, back to working at the knots. Tim could feel his fingers brushing against his own, each movement deft and sure.
“Everything went wrong,” Tim said, glaring into the darkness. “First he got called into work early, so we couldn’t even have breakfast together. Then he had a meeting over lunch, so that option was gone. And then he had to stay late at the office, so we missed our family dinner. And then he sent us off to investigate this drug ring while he skulks around on patrol with Robin,” the title came out as a growl, “and now we’re tied up and it might not even be Father’s Day anymore and I barely even got to speak to him.”
Dick laughed lightly. “Yeah, well. Welcome to holidays with the Bat-family.”
“And I bet the store’s closed by now, so I can’t even pick up his present,” Tim grumbled.
“What were you going to get him, anyway?” Dick asked.
“The complete series of The Gray Ghost on DVD. It’s some sort of anniversary collection. Limited time only. They just got it in yesterday.”
“He’ll love that,” Dick said, squirming as one of the knots finally came loose. “And I’m sure he’ll accept it even if it’s a day or two late.”
“Yeah,” Tim sighed. “So what did you get him?”
“A new bike. Completely modified. Faster and sleeker than his other models.”
They fell into silence for a bit, Dick still wrestling with the knots, Tim staring up into the shadows on the ceiling.
“You know,” Dick said, “if we aren’t out of this soon, Batman will have our hides.”
“And make us practice escapology again.”
Dick groaned. “Oh, God. Never again.”
Tim smiled slightly, then asked, “You think our other plan will work out?”
“I hope so,” Dick said. “Which is why I’d like to get out of this as soon as possible.” Tim felt some rope slide into his fingers and Dick said, “Pull this, will you?”
Tim obeyed, and as soon as he tugged the rope he felt another knot give way and heard Dick make a satisfied noise, although their hands remained stubbornly bound.
“Only a few more,” Dick said, and then Tim felt a knot press against his fingertips. “Can you get this one?”
They worked in silence for a few moments, the quiet broken only by the rustle of gloves on rope, until finally Dick let out a triumphant crow and sprang to his feet, dragging Tim up with him as the ropes fell to the ground in a heap.
“Just in time,” Dick said with a grin. Tim opened his mouth to ask what he meant, but then a window high up in the warehouse crashed and a slim, dark form dropped gracefully to the ground in front of them, cape floating in the air like smoke.
“Blackbat,” Dick said, by way of greeting, and Cassandra smiled.
“Having problems, Batman?” she asked, eyeing the pile of ropes at their feet.
“Not anymore,” Dick chirped.
“Find out anything useful about the drug ring?”
“Only that there is one,” Tim said, feeling rather sheepish.
“They got a jump on us,” Dick said. “We’ll try again when we’re better prepared.”
A frown crossed Cassandra’s face. “Are you hurt?”
“Just our prides,” Tim grumbled, and Dick snorted.
Cassandra nodded, her smile back in place, and turned to leave. “Time to go,” she said over her shoulder. “We will be late.”
The majority of the drive back to Wayne Manor was spent changing from costumes to civvies. Cass – despite her form-fitting outfit – seemed to have the least amount of trouble, and was finished in time to giggle when Tim whacked his head against the roof of the car in an attempt to wriggle out of his tights.
Once in the Cave, they stowed their costumes and hurried up the stairs into the Manor, only to be intercepted by Damian, standing in the doorway with his arms crossed, looking for all intents and purposes like some tiny guardian of the threshold.
“You’re late,” he growled, and although he should have looked ridiculous – a scowling ten year-old in a hooded sweatshirt with a bright red party hat resting jauntily on his head – Tim still winced at the boy’s accusatory tone.
Luckily, Dick was not to be intimidated.
“Sorry,” he said, ruffling Damian’s hair on his way down the hall and drawing an aggravated squawk from the boy. “We were a bit tied up.”
Cassandra lifted her hand to her lips to stifle her giggles.
“Whatever,” Damian scoffed, trying to fix his hair. “Father’s waiting for you in the kitchen.”
“Right,” Tim said, then grabbed Cassandra’s hand and tugged her past the self-imposed guardian and into the kitchen.
“Look alive, Tim,” Dick called, tossing him some oven mitts. “Grab the cake out of the oven, will you?”
Tim grabbed the mitts out of the air. “Uh… sure.”
The kitchen was a flurry of heat and activity. Dick was stirring frosting in a large bowl, Bruce was frowning at a dog-eared cookbook, and Stephanie was sorting through sprinkles.
“Hey, Tim!” Steph called, waving a container of sprinkles at him and flinging multi-colored pebbles into the air.
“You’re late,” Bruce said without looking up from the cookbook, and Tim fought not to roll his eyes as he stepped over to the ovens; like father, like son.
“I already apologized for that, B,” Dick said. “Besides, you and the girls have done a great job without us. We’ll be ready by the time Alfred gets home.”
Bruce grunted, then shut the heavy cookbook with a thud and cleared some space on the counter for Tim to deposit the cake. Dick came up on Bruce’s other side and set the bowl of frosting on the counter beside the cake.
“Are we ready to frost?” Dick asked, meeting Tim’s eyes with a grin and a wink.
Tim grinned right back. “I should think so.”
Bruce side-eyed them both – Tim on his left, Dick on his right – and seemed less than surprised when the boys twined their arms around him, trapping him in a hug.
“Happy Father’s Day, Bruce,” Dick said.
“Sorry we didn’t get to see you much today,” Tim added.
A strong arm slid around Tim’s waist, tugging him close against Bruce’s side.
“That makes two of us,” Bruce said quietly.
“Ooh, a group hug! Come on, Cass! And grab the troll, too!”
That, and a sputtered protest from Damian – who had just stalked into the kitchen – was the only warning before two solid, giggling weights thumped against Bruce’s back, knocking him and the boys into the counter. Tim grunted at the impact and felt two more sets of arms wrap around him, squishing them all together.
“This is ridiculous,” said Damian’s muffled voice. But Bruce just smiled and Steph and Dick laughed, and they stayed like that for a moment, surrounded by the dry heat of the kitchen and the sweet scent of freshly baked cake.
“Alfred will be here soon,” Cassandra said, and that was the cue for them to untangle.
“Dibs on frosting the cake!” Steph said as everyone went back to their posts, Damian muttering to himself and looking rather like an angry, mussed cat.
“No way,” Dick said, brandishing a butter knife with a wicked grin. “I made the frosting, I get to frost.”
“En garde!” Steph crowed, and what followed was an epic battle of butter knives and very little actual frosting, but no one seemed to mind.
At least until the front door opened and Barbara called from the entrance hall, “We’re home!”
The change in the kitchen was palpable. The cake was frosted and sprinkled in no time, the dishes were stacked in the sink, plates and napkins and balloons were moved from the pantry to the table, and by the time Barbara and Alfred entered the kitchen, everything was perfect.
Alfred came up short in the doorway, his eyes widening in surprise. Bruce walked up to him with a grin and clapped a hand to his shoulder.
“Happy Father’s Day, old friend,” he said, and the younger members of the family echoed the sentiment.
“Well,” Alfred said, clearing his throat. “I must say, this is a pleasant… surprise.”
“You’re not actually surprised, though, are you?” Dick asked.
“I knew you were planning something, Master Richard,” Alfred said. “I simply assumed it would be for Master Bruce.”
“Don’t be ridiculous,” Bruce said. “We all know who the real head of this family is.”
“Yes, well.” Alfred smiled slightly, a mischievous gleam in his eye. “I will not deny that, sir.”
“Come have some cake, Alfie,” Dick said, slinging a friendly arm around the butler’s shoulders and leading him over to the table.
Tim watched them go with a small smile, then stepped over to stand beside Barbara, resting a hand on her shoulder.
“How’s it going, Tim?” Barbara asked, smiling up at him.
“It's... going well,” Tim said, returning the smile. “I’m really glad you could make it. The commish doesn’t mind sharing you for the night?”
“Don’t be silly,” Barbara laughed, waving a hand. “He’s already asleep. We celebrated Father’s Day this afternoon. Besides…” Barbara’s smile warmed as she looked past Tim to where a chuckling Alfred was tucking into a piece of cake. “If there’s anything I’ve learned in the past few years, it’s that there’s more than one kind of family, and more than one kind of father to celebrate. I would never miss this.”
Tim watched as Dick hugged a squirming Damian to his side and Cass and Steph kissed a flushing Alfred on the cheeks. Bruce stood slightly apart from them all, leaning against the counter and smiling.
“Yeah,” Tim mumbled, and Barbara gripped his hand tight. “I’d never miss this.”
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Ah, the Batfamily as I will always remember them. Except without Jason. Poor Jason. He only fit into the angsty plot-bunnies.
Oh well - I hope you liked it! Thanks for reading, guys! :D