Awkwarrrd

February 27, 2016:

Bluebird finally confronts Nightwing about his secret. Aka Bats are dicks!

Undisclosed Safehouse

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions: Batman

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

Dick is in the safehouse, having told Harper to meet him there when she was able. He was still feeling the after-effects of Pyg's serum - the dosage that had driven him mad. The hallucinations, the pain, the violence - even what happened with Harper, after he was semi-coherent, was half a fog. But he knew enough to know that certain things were out in the open.

He's shirtless, wearing the bottom half of his costume and doing pull-ups on the bar, trying to sweat out the last of the lingering toxins when he hears the security checkpoint bing. He sees Harper on the camera and says aloud - "Door unlock - security code Graywing omega flux." he says and there's a low buzz as the hidden door opens and allows Bluebird in.

She really doesn't know how Batman does it. As of now, Harper, and often times called Maria, has three jobs. One, working on the city's electrical grid, two, working under cover at Arkham Asylum. And three, vigilante. To say that she needs a nights rest is an understatement. Cullen has been getting to school just fine and being looked after, but still. She was tired as hell and the past few days proved that she was lacking the sleep.

As she was buzzed in, she pushes the door open, having waited /days/ to actually see him. There was this tenseness about her and yet, if she were to take off her mask, there would be dark rings around her eyes. The door was soon closed behind her as she immediately moves towards the fridge, cracking it open to take a bottle of water out, twisting the cap and drinking it down almost immediately. She looked a right mess.

Dick Grayson releases the bar and drops down, grabbing a towel and wiping away some of the sweat, "I need one of those myself," he says, making his way over and reaching into the fridge to snag one for himself. His black hair is tucked behind his ears with a hasty motion and he goes to sit at the foot of the workout bench, the towel draped around the back of his neck and over his shoulders.

"I'm sorry," he says. "Batman's rules are very strict. Even when I wanted to tell you - and I have, for a while now - my secret isn't just my secret. You're smart enough to put the puzzle pieces together - finding out who I am means you know Bruce is Batman. Which leads to Robin, Oracle, Batgirl…everyone gets compromised. I've known you were trustworthy for a long time - but finding this out? It means you're carrying a loaded gun. People kill to find out this information - people have died to protect it."

Harper moves out of the way at his approach, holding the fridge open then closing it as soon as he moves. She could barely look at him, she was still ashamed about.. well, everything. Talking about her potential relationship with him, discussing him to him, and.. just pining! Stupid high school bullcrap!

She shakes her head, though.. turning to face him with a lean, her brows furrowing and.. the look of utter shock that crosses her face. So much that her mask was peeled off and thrown to the ground, and the water bottle?

Chucked -RIGHT- at Dick.

"I DIDN'T NEED TO KNOW THAT. OKAY?!" She was inwardly freaking out. Inwardly. It was madness.

Dick Grayson snatches the water out of the air with one hand, leaving it leaking around, making a puddle as what was left pours out of the spout before he turns it right side up again. "I don't blame you for being angry. About it being kept secret or about finding out. It's not an easy or a fair position. But none of this is easy or fair. What happened to your father wasn't fair. Or to my parents. Or to Bruce's," he sighs.

"There's no…handbook on how to do this. Mistakes happen. I never wanted to lie to you - and, when I could be, I was always honest as I could be," he says.

"What in the world has our parents got anything to do with this?" She asks, fuming. "This is me and you here. Not Batman, not.. Bruce or.. whoever the hell that asshole is!" She flings herself away from the fridge, folding her arms around her chest to pace, her mask gripped in between her fingers and soon flung towards his knee. "I opened up to you. ABOUT YOU! You didn't stop. You just asked question after question.." Okay, maybe it was just two questions. Maybe just one.

"If that's not a violation of trust I don't know what is. Like.. you could have stopped. You could have said.. 'Oh Bluebird. Lets not talk about that guy right now, we need to focus on the mission. But nope. You pretty much used what I told 'you' about.. 'YOU' against me. Totally a dick move for a guy named DICK by the way. Fuckin' righteous."

Dick Grayson puts down the water, "You think it was easy? You think I just did it for my own fucking jollies?" he says and it's rare to hear him swear. Alfred just didn't have much tolerance for it. Bruce didn't care. "I wanted to tell you or to stop you or…I didn't know what to do. Honestly, no one has ever known me in both identities before, separately. I always keep those two worlds…apart. And there you were and yes, I developed feelings for you and that made everything more muddled and complicated. And the longer it went, the worse it got." he says.

"I mean, I knew you wouldn't take it well. How could you?"

That.. kind of makes Harper stop. She never really had the luxury of looking at both sides of things. And plus he swore. It would be hilarious later on, cause he actually really kept it cool even when he was in a spot of trouble. That good ol' bat training.

"N..no I'm not saying it was easy but.. c'mmon.." She was tired, so much that she actually yawned a little. "I just.. I never thought my entire world would be just turned upside down like that. I didn't expect it. I.."

She just sighs. She really couldn't hate any of them. It'll be worked out of her system soon enough but she understood the importance of that secret. They'd never really be safe without secrets. It was their life. And it was something that she would not tell Cullen. Not at all.

"So.. that.. that happened."

Awkward..

Dick Grayson nods, "That happened," he agrees. He pats a spot on the bench next to him, "C'mon, sit down. I know it's a lot to take in. And I really did mean to tell you - genuinely, after…this was all over. Pyg and all his mess. But that's just dragged on and…while I don't like the way it came out, I'm glad it did. I hated lying to you, hated every second of it," he says.

"And now I can look at you and say that I know how brave and amazing and awesome you are. That I know what you've been through and what you've put yourself through. That I can't imagine having to do the things you've done on your own. At least I had a grown-up to help, even if he was…complicated," he says.

Harper sighs, her body nearly going limp as she half-assed stomps her way towards the bench. She settles down next to him, which soon uncurls so that her hands press against the seat with a slight lean forward. "I.. well I can't say I know. No, I can say I know. I mean I lied to you too by proxy but.. I don't know. Now I just feel like I'm calling the kettle black. You're still an asshole though." She smiles a little, leaning slightly to bump his shoulder with her own.

"Ah.. stop it. You're making this all worse." In truth, she was blushing. "But.. if you look at it this way, you had a mother and a father all in one person, and a tutor. Like.. after a while? I was starting to think I wouldn't have any of that. Until one day I open the door and got this sweet, Batman certified armor all gift wrapped." She pauses a little. "Okay, it wasn't gift wrapped but somehow he got ahold of my fingerprints and had some awesome type of case that I'm going to replicate as soon as I get free time."

Dick Grayson nods, "Yeah, he's good at that. I think he likes playing fairy godmother sometimes. Or Santa Clause. I think it makes it easier for him to give things and leave. Doesn't have to deal with the emotions involved - he can feel good for giving it but too much of that sort of thing and…" he shakes his head. He can get into Bruce theorizing for hours. Trying to crack the nut of his mentor/big brother has been something he's been trying to do forever.

"I had a mother and a father. I never forget them. I was thirteen when they died. I remember every second of it, watching them fall, seeing them hit the ground. The gunshots still ringing in the air as they were blown right off the trapeze," he says. "Bruce never pretended to replace them. We are family, yes, but we were partners first. His rage and mine, side by side. He was still learning himself, I think, although he never let me see him sweat," he says. "I don't usually talk about this stuff. Not with anyone," he says. "He likes you, y'know. You wouldn't be operating if he didn't."

"That just makes it all sound even more weird. I don't know. Dude could use a little hug, I mean he's a handsome man and all but.." Yeah, it was starting to get extra, extra weird. She wanted to say more about her dad. Even more about her mother. But she really couldn't. She frowns more as she listens, her hands drawing up to rub a little at her face, then leans against him to stare against the ground as she smiles a little about the Bats.

"I kind of figured. He told me to quit, offered to send me to college. But.. I don't think I can quit." She lifts her cast covered arm, it was a slow heal, getting there. Hell, she was half inclined to take it off right then. "I think I'm vested. Too much." She pauses. "Grayson. You… you said you had feelings? Like.. what."

Dick Grayson slides his arm around her as she leans against him and sighs, "Yeah, I figured you were. I did, once upon a time. Quit being Robin, went to college for a while. Tried to pretend I was just a regular person. But I'm not. Not anymore. I stopped being that when I signed onto the war,' he says. "And yeah, he could probably use a hug, it's just hard getting him to accept it," he says.

At the last question, he pauses for a moment and then leans over and kisses the top of her head, "Feelings. Boy/girl feelings. Kissing feelings. Touching feelings," he says. "More than like. Even more than like-like," he teases.

"At least you had a chance. Got a degree. A real job as being a cop. I mean you could have quit there but then you're all double-timing. Where as, I'm triple timing and can't even catch a damn nap." She laughs a little, but frowns. "I can't stop though. Not until Cullen is somewhere safe, like.. away from this dead end of a city. And then I'll see about stopping. But, he's not even done with school yet, and he's still afraid to walk the streets alone but it's getting better. Once everything is better, I'll stop. And focus."

The kiss to her head has her cheeks turning a little red, her eyes glancing upwards as she pulls away to give him a slight look. She.. just has to smack him, thwapping his arm hard enough to cause a light little bruise with a slight shake of her head. "I'm being serious, Grayson. Stop teasing."

Dick Grayson nods at her talk about quitting when Cullen is safe. He would never be safe in Gotham, it's true. Or anywhere. Once you realize you can make a difference, you can't help but keep trying, even when the circumstances that drove you into the mask in the first place have changed.

But he doesn't talk about that now.

Instead he cups her chin and leans her up to look at him, "You want serious? Okay. I've been falling for you since the day I helped pull you bleeding and half-dead out of a nightclub shot up by a maniac. And I only started to feel more strongly the more I've seen of you in action. I love you, even if you're a damn fool sometimes," he says. He leans in and gives her a long, tender kiss, a hand stroking through her multi-hued hair until he has to take a deep breath.

Awww!

Harper wanted to melt. To say something to cement the occasion. But in truth, she was shrinking. Cowering back into something that was.. a mess of emotions and ew girly stuff until the kiss was planted upon her lips that left her lingering. She, didn't move afterwards. Keeping in that same position until her eyes slowly open, drawing back and away from him with a scoot and her own deep breath taken in, and exhaled with a lift of her hand and a rub at the back of her neck. Gosh..

"I.. should probably go." She finalizes, drawing herself upright, taking a slight stumbled step and a yawn to snatch her mask from the ground, that flimsy thing, to try to peel upon her face. "I just wanted to see how you were doing, really."

Dick Grayson grabs a hold of her wrist, "Not so fast," he says, tugging her back down to sit on the bench. He's still stronger than her by a good measure and now he doesn't have to pretend he isn't. "You heard how I felt. You wanted a serious answer. I think a serious answer deserves a serious response," he says. He takes her hand more gently, squeezing it.

"If you don't feel the same way, I understand. But I would rather know that going forward, rather than…harassing you about it," he says. "And yes, I know you have some feelings for me, but I just admitted to…rather strong ones. And I don't expect reciprocation - I certainly haven't earned it. But I'd like a chance to try, at least," he says, lifting that hand up and kissing her knuckles.

Her arm immediately is jerked up as he grabs her, and.. she was SO thankful it wasn't her broken one. Yet, anyways. She didn't feel the pain anymore but his grip was tight for those brief moments as she was stumbled back into sitting. "I.. well I gave you my response." She admits. Flummoxed. She was confused! "I said I wanted to make sure you were okay. I mean, that's enough alright."

Through her mask, her gaze almost looks harsh. Those baby brown eyes looks almost vacant. But that is the look that she usually puts on when she wears the mask, until they finally spark to life once he kisses her knuckles and.. she leans forward to kiss his nose.

"You took me to dinner in your fancy car. You saved my life a lot. Are you telling me you weren't trying then?" She shakes her head, but smiles. "Whatever Dick, your clock is starting as soon as I walk out that door."

Dick Grayson shakes his head, "You haven't seen me really try yet…but you're going to," he says. "Go on, get some rest. Or rest here, if you like. I have the room if you don't feel like driving home. I make a mean omelette…" he says.

"…since you offered." Harper was not going home this night. No. Her bed was damn near smushed. The mattress she had was just a thin layer of poorly constructed things which actually rest upon wires and fringes. Cullen has the best bed. She'd often sleep in it when he's at school and she's at home from work. Her fingers tear away the mask to toss aside, the yawn touching her lips as she stands to give a long, armed stretch and a curve of her back with a few pops that could be heard aired out. And then she positively drags ass, right towards the room.

"We're cutting my cast off tomorrow. Tired of wearing this itch-.." Whatever else was said probably fell by the wayside because she was already knocked the hell out.

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