All the things of the world
by Te
September 17, 2006

Disclaimers: No one and nothing here is mine.

Spoilers/Timeline: GOTHAM KNIGHTS #43, and various
AU-ized mentions of older storylines. Takes place about a
year and a half after "The Killing Joke."

Summary: Batgirl probably shouldn't have a penis.

Ratings Note: Mostly harmless.

Author's Note: A porn prompt went awry on me again.

Acknowledgments: To Betty, Petra, and Jack for
audiencing, encouragement, hand-holding, and helpful

The uniform never feels better -- more *right* -- than
when --

Well, when it shouldn't. For one reason or --

It's always the one reason, if he's going to be honest with

The fact of the matter is, it was never supposed to be this
*easy*. The greys and blues of the uniform were, of course,
as well suited as anything to moving *subtly* through the
Gotham night, but the golds --

The *yellows* --

His *wig* --

He is not supposed to be subtle, or watchful, or quiet, or any
of the things which had always seemed so necessary to who
he *was*. And while there is only one person about whom
Tim is absolutely *sure* -- in terms of knowing the truth
behind his careful, nightly camouflage...

The fact remains -- he's *good* at this. The heels are
actually *easier* to move in at a run, a dancing skip that
leads perfectly -- always perfectly -- into a kick. The cowl --
and the contact lenses -- hide everything important about
his upper face, his lower is --

It's the only point of exposure. It *has* to be --

It's the *uniform* and even the *mission* --

It feels breathless to laugh like this as he runs for the bike,
as he -- he's playing tag with Robin, *again*, and -- he's
going to lose. Batgirl will.

The heels *will* catch if he's not careful, and it isn't -- none
of this is *enough* of a game to justify that risk.

Robin has no such limitations, and it --

It's never easier to *be* this than when Robin catches him
by the shoulder. Punching him too hard would mean
unnecessary damage to his knuckles, for all that the
gauntlets are far more armored than they used to be.

Robin's tunic is more armored, too.

And so the punch is as much of a tease as his smile, as the
lipstick smeared across Robin's mouth -- he's won this, he's
earned this.

The bike is trying to trip him, and Robin isn't especially --
Robin is never very *helpful* about things like this -- which
is all the more reason (for certain values) to turn the kiss
into a bite --

Even though Robin would've probably reacted differently to
that if he wasn't Jason Todd --

"*Jesus*, *yes* --"

Still, the laughing shove is just right, too -- Batgirl knows
what to do with an amorous Robin --

"Oh, God, come *on* --"

-- though he's reasonably sure Barbara had had to cross her
arms over her chest, cock her hip, and raise *this* sort of
eyebrow far less often.

It makes Robin -- Jason -- snort. And -- "God, sometimes
you're just *like* her," he says.

Which is exactly as it should be, even though it *does*
make Jason back off, makes Robin gesture with mocking
solicitude toward Tim's bike just as if he *hadn't* been
trying to bend him over it --

Even though Tim's back to feeling a little -- a *little* --
wrong again.

Jason wasn't trying to bend *him* over at all.


It's easier back in the Clocktower. It's easier once he's back
in the old blast-tunnels that Oracle had had converted, once
the sound of the bike's engine is rippling and echoing off
reinforced concrete, just as if Oracle would ever need more
warning than the tracers on the suit -- and subcutaneously
within Tim's left thigh and over his right shoulder-blade.

The bike is Batgirl's to the core, and it's as right as anything,
everything --

It hadn't been this confusing, once.

The reports are half-done -- or more -- via the expediency
of the wireless on his palm-top and Oracle's own feeds
through the cowl. Tim kicks out of the heels, curls his toes
until the knuckles crack a little, and finishes them, neatly
and thoroughly.

When he's done, he strips out of the rest of the uniform,
scratching at his sweat-damp buzz-cut and not thinking
about -- any of it.

He can feel Oracle's frown reflecting back off one of the
monitors she's working with, and he doesn't know what to
do with it.

Batgirl is supposed to be -- very fond of Robin. Batgirl
probably shouldn't have a penis. Tim finishes dressing in
his civvies and lets himself snort, a little. It's -- it's not really
his fault.

*Robin* isn't supposed to try all that hard to get past first
base. There are -- there should be -- rules. It doesn't --

*Nothing* works without rules, without rhythms, and it's not
that Tim is especially superstitious -- he believes in what
he's *seen*, and in that which can be proven. There has
always been a kind of magic in the more esoteric areas of
abnormal psychology, a kind of mystery to the troubled
mind which could be banked, led, guided, *controlled* --

By the application of sigil, and symbol, and faith. Tim stares
at his hands --

"*Were* you planning on talking about it, Tim?"

His hands make so much more sense in the gauntlets. "It's
nothing new, Oracle."

She doesn't respond so much as hum. He can't *hear* her
steepling her fingers and letting her head fall to the side in
thought, but he knows it, just the same. He --

He gives up, for all intents and purposes, and joins her at
the computers. The wheels on her chair have just the right
cant for leaning, if one is in a certain kind of crouch. He has
time to just -- stay here, for a little while.

If he were to clutch at the toes of his trainers and use the
muscles of his thighs to rock -- he wouldn't be able to lean.

Though it would be infinitely more Batgirl. And it's --

It is, actually, one of the questions he's never asked. There
are a great deal of things, a great range of *motion* which
Oracle -- Barbara -- is denied, but when she's Barbara and
he's Tim, he's *still* far more Batgirl than she is.

Batgirl may not actually be physically capable of a finger-
steeple. He wants to know -- now more than at any other
time -- what Barbara had *done* with Batgirl. Where she'd
gone before he'd all but shoved himself into her life and
demanded her return.

The world needed Oracle. Gotham needed -- well.

"You could tell him."

"I --"

"*Dick* knew my identity long before I knew his," she says,
and types something rapidly before pausing, and resting
one hand on the back of Tim's neck.

Tim pushes against it.

"Certainly, the idea that *Bruce* might not know who you
are is -- entirely laughable."

Though not, of course, the sort of laugh which had anything
to do with *humor*... and thus not a laugh which Batgirl
could make. By the nebulous rules of -- their nebulous *life*,
they're chasing Batgirl away with every moment.

And he --

Can't. "That's never seemed -- right, Barbara."

"It's not something I was fond of, no, but, Tim --"

"I -- I *hate* it," he says, and twists away from the chair,
from the touch, to stand. The trainers don't click against
Oracle's floor, the soles aren't slick enough to *encourage*
the way he wants to move --

"Tim --"

But his hands are on his hips just the same, and it feels...

"Oh... Batgirl," Oracle says, and her laugh is rueful and
proud and correct.

He is what she made him. And -- "Let him figure it *out* if
he needs to know. I -- I don't belong to them," he says,
and --

There was a time when it was -- *embarrassing* to be like
this, to toss hair he doesn't have, to show quite this many
teeth, to call attention to his lack of hips, to thrust his flat
chest out just *so* --

"I'll just... "

-- to speak without a *plan*, without --

"Robin -- *Jason* -- could use a little shock. A little
*surprise* --"

"A little Crying Game...?" Barbara is resting her cheek on
one scarred fist, tucking the fading calluses into invisibility.

Tim makes a very particular face. "If he reaches down my
tights -- he deserves what he gets," he says, and leans in to
kiss the soft and -- faintly -- shocked laughter off Oracle's

The lipstick smear is really just right --

Until he remembers that it isn't.

"I should apologize, I know," Oracle says, and rolls toward
the face-cloths and cold cream. "But you really are adorable
when you forget to lose the makeup."

It's -- entirely true. Still. "Shall I let you explain that to my
father sometime...?"

And the smile is sharp and cold and perfect. For Oracle.


Robin's his backup tonight, and Tim suspects there had been
just as many awkwardly unspoken conversations about that
in the Batcave as there'd been awkwardly *spoken* ones in
the Clocktower.

Still, it's Robin, and it's Jason, and he's completely casual
about correcting Tim's stances and provocative leans, and
his fingers are deft and steady when he makes Tim's
makeup just that much trashier.

The wig --

He's wearing one, of course, he always is, it's just that this
time it's long and curly and dark. It makes him feel a bit like
a dirty-and-overachieving q-tip, despite the fact that it's
absolutely perfect for concealing the fact that he doesn't,
actually, have long red hair under it.

Robin always handles the prostitutes, unless he absolutely
*needs* back-up.

Robin -- is absolutely terrible at undercover.

The fact that Tim doesn't want Jason thinking too deeply
about how good *he* is at it -- is irrelevant. The man they're
after leaves the young, dark-haired girls alive, but that isn't
saying very much at all.

Two of them still haven't regained consciousness. And --

It's *that* anger, Tim thinks, that lets him be easy in his
own skin even though Jason had spent the better part of an
hour all but crowding him against walls, touching and
*moving* him, directing --

Tim recognizes his own kinks, and shoves them under
Batgirl, and shoves Batgirl under Tammi-with-an-eye-only-
not-the-kind-that's-winking-at-you-handsome, and waits for
the triple-tap that tells him Robin's removed every other
girl of their target's type from this particular stroll, and...
makes his entrance.

The heels are about two inches taller than his usual and lack
the needle-like stilettos Tim's come to honestly, openly love,
but there's no objective difference. He has to work to teeter
a little, to keep his eyes just that wide, to pretend to forget
to work his -- naturally -- skinny hips --

To pretend to remember.

"That's it," Robin -- Jason -- says, unnecessarily, over the

Tim lets the face he wants to make become something softer
and younger and vulnerable.

"Fuck, you look seriously *starved* in that outfit, BG."

Jason likes them padded. Like Batgirl. Like -- no.

"I still don't see why Junior Malone couldn't have been
pimping you out," he says, and it's all the irritation and
frustration which he hadn't been showing -- in any clear
way -- when Tim was close enough to touch, and when
Batgirl had been able to respond.

Tim shakes his head internally and finds a light-post --

"Too bright, BG. You're cop-bait."

-- and finds another.

"That's it. Jesus, you have to be freezing in that."

The hot-pants cover more -- area -- than Jason's shorts, but
Tim knows that isn't the point. And yet -- still. He plants his
palms firmly on his hips, fingerless gloves catching and
scratching, cheap material on cheaper -- switch, switch.

Jason's laugh in his ear is rueful and appreciative. "Point
freaking taken. Still, *you* still have functional
nerve-endings in the skin there... God. Do you always
shave? Do you ever?"

There is no gesture Tammi could make which would
properly express Batgirl's response to that question.

"Yeah... I'm totally perving on your thighs. It could be
worse -- I've actually *seen* your thighs once or twice --"

In glimpses, the inevitable uniform damage -- one particular
bomb-blast that had come very close to singeing the gaff. Tim
doesn't shave his *legs* very often, but...

"Whereas this is totally the first time I've seen your belly-
button, BG. I formally request -- I *demand* forgiveness.
You know how hot you are."

Tammi can blush. Tammi can use her cheap little purse to
hide her cheap little belly from the view of passers-by -- and
then remember, and move it away --

"When are you gonna let me *really* kiss you? When are
you gonna let me know your *name*?"

Every night, when he's alone except for the comm, the
tracers, the fading welts from the boning on his bra, the
armor over that, the need for support -- the *lack* of need --

"Have you ever wanted to know mine?"

He -- looks. He can't help it. Just a glance toward the only
rooftop in de-cel swing distance that's shadowed enough to
hide Jason, hide *Robin*. Just --


The mascara is thicker, heavier -- literally -- than his usual.
The lipstick is waxy and wrong, the -- he should look away.

"Yeah, I -- hey..."

The tone is enough of a warning, but --

"Right about four o'clock and closing. He's in his forties, he's
built like military, and his knuckles are shot to shit."

-- it's not that Tim doesn't appreciate the rest.

"Jesus, I -- just. Just get him to own up, a little. I don't care
if he gets arrested or *not* -- *none* of the older pros
would ever have let a fuck like this get close. Fucking baby-
raper --"

Tammi turns at the *fourth* scuff of boot-heels on the
sidewalk. Tammi blinks up at the man -- the prospective
*customer*, and starts to take a step back -- the man's
very close --

"Come on, come on --"

Tammi doesn't have someone urging violence in her ear,
Tammi's all alone, and Tammi can't back off at all.

Sends the wrong message.

"Like -- like what you see, Mister?"

"Yeah, that 'mister' is a little much. But keep going," Jason

The man -- doesn't say a word, but his stare is Batman's
fucked-up second cousin's. Tammi should --

Tammi breathes a little faster, and clutches her cheap little
bag. "It's free to *look*, but -- dot, dot, dot," she says, and
smiles nice and sharp. Or it would be, if it reached her eyes.

"Where," the man says --

"There's a nice little hotel -- real cheap --"

"Like you?"

Tammi would blush. Tim settles for slipping back a little into
the shadows, closer to the alley. "I --"

"*I* think this alley's just fine," the man says --

"That's one from the witness statements --"

"Don't you, babycakes?"

"And that's two --"

"I -- I don't know," Tammi says, and the smile is sickly and
a little entreating, a little sad. "The hotel's really --"

Three is the man's hand on his shoulder, spinning him
around. Four is when one hand becomes two, and the
shove might *not* be five, but it's close enough for
government work.

Leg-sweeps are challenging backwards, from this position,
but the man -- the *perp* -- isn't expecting it, and Tim's
had a lot of practice.

It's enough to make him stagger and loosen his grip, and
thus enough for Batgirl to spin into a punch that breaks the
man's nose -- and spins the *perp* right into the path of
Jason's boots.

The crunch announces the sound of several broken teeth
and -- perhaps -- a busted jaw.

It's enough to take pretty much all of the fight out of the
guy -- they both know that was more of a flail than an
attempt to strike back -- but.

It's not enough for Jason.

Which is --

It's almost a shame that Jason isn't *smaller*, or weaker, or
less well-trained, otherwise it would take more than two
kicks to take out five (six?) of the perp's ribs, and it's.

He's not Batman, and Batgirl *sympathizes*, but Jason is
Robin and Tim needs that enough that he can get Jason
into a half-nelson for *long* enough to tell him to stop.
Beg him --

"Fuck -- BG, let *go* --"

If Jason drops into the crouch his thighs are threatening
with every flex, he could throw Tim like a ragdoll. At the
very least, his wig wouldn't stay even. "*Robin*," he says,
and tries not to think about how much the Batgirl voice is
*slipping* --

And then just focuses on keeping his balance when Jason
tosses him to the *side*.

"Fuck --"

"Oh, *fuck*," Jason says, and catches him by the waistband
of his hot-pants.

This is less than conducive to balance, but Tim's willing to
go with the idea of the thought counting. Especially since
Jason *yanks* his hand out of Tim's pants and steadies him
by the hips, instead -- and then the shoulders. "Robin --"

"BG, I'm sorry, I'm so --"

"It's okay --"

"Really fucking *not* --"

At their feet, the perp is trying to get up -- and then he isn't,
because Tammi's cheap little purse is just large enough to
hold the remnants of an old Crime Alley -- Park Row --

"Or -- that," Jason says, and laughs, and covers his mouth,
and laughs harder.

His boots leave bloody smears when he stumble-walks over
to lean against the wall, and the comm is about three
millimeters from falling out of his ear, and Batgirl thinks he's
the most beautiful thing she's ever seen, the bravest and
stupidest and youngest and most perfect --

Tammi would trip over the body between them, but Tammi
*really* would've run screaming -- perhaps literally -- once
the fighting started, and --

And Tammi isn't *here*, and Tim shouldn't be, and it's the
point, isn't it? He's *Batgirl*, and that's all that matters.
That's --

"God, I -- you know I'd never --"

That's everything, because Batgirl *does* know, just like
how she knows that the man-shaped animal at her feet
never would've done a day in prison, because underaged
hookers don't do that well in court when they *do* show
up -- when they bother to press charges.

"I -- Batgirl. BG...?"

Batgirl already knows Jason's name, but she wants to -- Tim
wants to --

Batgirl knows Jason tastes like the bitten inside of his own
cheek, that his hands are big enough to make her feel as
young as Tammi, or maybe Tim, that Robin is smart enough
to push-pull-kiss them back into the alley, that no Tammi
will be beaten and raped and beaten again in this alley
tonight, that this is the real kiss Jason was talking about,
because even Batgirl can't laugh for all of them.

Tim can't even gasp. Not even when Jason breaks the kiss
to laugh for both of them.

"Sometimes -- sometimes I think B knows when I'm close to
the edge. Because that's when there's *you*, when he
brings you in, or sends me to you, or -- I *need* you. I
needed you, and you were right there, even though I
thought you never would be again -- fuck, BG, I don't even
know what I'm talking about --"

"Garzonas?" Tim asks, because Tim's an idiot --

But Jason only snorts again, and bangs his head lightly
against Tim's forehead, and "yeah," he says. "Yeah."

"She -- misses you, too. You could come to the Clocktower --
more often," he says, and blushes like Batgirl never would,
Batgirl wouldn't *dream* of it, but Batgirl doesn't have to
*hide* when Jason comes over --

"Yeah, I should. Because -- and -- I mean. You're not her."

"No. I -- Robin --"

"Jason," he says, and doesn't give Tim time for anything,
even hesitation, before kissing him again, slow and hard.
Kissing --

Kissing the girl behind the cowl.


"I'm reasonably sure I didn't send you out to put a man in
traction and make out with Robin in an alley," Oracle says,
and -- looks at him. Looks...

Tim smiles ruefully -- weakly -- and tugs the wig off.

"God, your mouth looks like --"

"Robin hit it repeatedly with his own...?"

Oracle -- Barbara -- snorts and wheels closer. The uniform
is in her lap, the -- correct -- lipstick on top. "If it wasn't so
ugly out there tonight..."

Tim nods and strips the rest of the way. He feels about as
fit for duty as the cheap spike heels -- possibly the one
that's already broken -- in the storage compartment on the
bike. He'd had to ride home barefoot. Mostly.

Jason had taped his feet.

("God, of course your toenails match your lipstick -- you --
heh. Your *real* lipstick.")

Once he's suited up -- Jason had done a good enough job
that Barbara has to *cut* the tape off -- he feels a little
better. A little more --

"C'mon, Tim, stretch a little first."

Oracle watches him silently, frowning at the strain he can't
hide in his side -- Jason's *toss* -- and nodding when he
can pull himself out of it a little. The heels click on the tile,
and Tim doesn't know who he is, exactly, when he wraps
his arms around Oracle instead of just kissing her, kissing
the last layer of gratuitous shine off his lipstick. He --

He buries his face against her neck and hugs her hard and,
after a moment, she hugs him right back, and she doesn't
make any more Crying Game jokes, so Tim doesn't have to
play it back at her --

Batgirl doesn't have to do a damned thing, of course,
except for her job.

Tim leaves the heels where they are when she rides.


Tim stops being sure where the line is -- was -- when Jason
crowds her against a high-*enough* balustrade and Robin
kisses an apology where the edge of his cape had whipped
a stripe over Batgirl's bare cheek in the wind.

If Jason pushes any harder, Tim will fall, and Batgirl will
wrench her shoulder in the efforts -- possibly futile -- to
save her life. The fall isn't quite far enough, and there's not
enough room --

There's not enough room for anything in Jason's kisses, in
the scars on his thighs she can't feel well *enough* through
her gauntlets, in the muscle and heat and *press*.

In the knowledge that Robin's gauntlet on her midriff is
somewhere between a promise and a --

"Just -- *please*," Jason says, and the other hand is
keeping her from falling over the side, and Jason is
*pressing*. It's hard to breathe and it's incredibly hard to

It's cold enough that Jason's cheek is warm against her own,
that the flush on her face has to feel the same way to him,
and --

If there are rules for this, Tim doesn't know them.

"I want --"

"Just as much as *I* do," Jason says, and between Batgirl's
cape and Robin's own, there'd be enough cushion on this
rooftop for anything -- everything --

Or there would be, if Jason didn't catch Tim's hands before
he could -- she --

"I'm thinking. I'm thinking you need to decide what you
want. And -- what you want me to know."

It says too much that he's fully forty seconds -- possibly
more -- into the next kiss before that *registers*, and it says
even more than that when he can't stop. Even when he
realizes that the only reason his legs aren't spread is the
fact that Jason's straddling him, that Batgirl wouldn't stand
for anything of the kind, that --

"God, you --"

All Batgirl needs to do is kiss Jason again, because Jason's
wanted her for years, if not quite before Tim ever knew
his name. All she needs to --

All he needs to --

"Fuck, *Jason*," and it's a growl because Batgirl *can't*
and it's a whisper because Tim can, and neither of them
are right now, neither of them *fit*.

It's a costume, right down to Tim's bones, or maybe further
than that. It's colored contact lenses and the way they
always, *always* itch a little, it's the haircut that makes his
stepmother leave U.S. Army pamphlets around when his
father isn't paying attention, the haircut he needs for the
*wig*, it's the camera that feels like a toy in his hands
now, and the fact that 'Batgirl' wouldn't have worked a
fraction so well if 'Tim Drake' was anyone other than a

It's -- Jason, and the look on his face that's calm and steady
and clear, and never mind the fact that he's got --
someone -- pinned to the roof and this close to begging.

Tim's mouth is cold, and the lipstick on Jason's cheek --

Could really be a better shade for his coloring.

It's -- some variety of better that the laughter is making
Jason look confused. And a little pissed-off, especially since
Tim isn't sure he could put a *gender* -- much less a
name -- to the laugh if -- he tried. Just... "How long?" Tim
asks, when he can breathe again. "How long have you

Jason glares a little more, and lets Tim go, and kneels up. "I
think the -- heh -- thought process was pretty much 'how
come no one else notices that the new Batgirl is a dude?'
followed by 'how come no one cares Batgirl is a dude?'
followed by 'okay, so we're just not talking about it. Maybe
she's saving up for the op.'"

Which -- ah. Tim sits up, bracing on the light padding at the
elbows of the Batgirl suit. "I thought -- I'd done better than

Jason shrugs. "Some weeks I work with you more than I
work with Batman. I just -- everybody *else* is letting you
roll with it, do your thing, and you're..." Jason shakes his
head and stands, and Tim doesn't reach --

Tim doesn't reach.

"I had this whole thing in my head where the next time I
got you *like* this -- up against a wall, wedged between
me and your bike, whatever, I'd just -- tell you I didn't
*care*, but that's not. It's not the truth."

Tim doesn't close his eyes. "I don't... know how to
apologize. I --"

"See, I think I would've noticed if you'd promised me a
vagina, BG."

Which is true.

"Or -- anything." And Jason's laughing again. "See, part of
me *knows* you were about to just -- give it up. The rest
of me...?"


The smile on Jason's face is Robin, and it --

It's the same thing as always, the same thing that makes it
right, the same *feeling* to use the reinforced heels to --
Batgirl doesn't ever *just* stand up. This is kind of a roll,
all about the strength he'd spent months building in his
thighs, working until it was even more obvious how narrow
his hips were, until the padding had to be just that *good*,
until he didn't look like --

Until he wasn't --

"Yeah, *that*," Jason says, and Robin's stroking Batgirl's belt
just lightly enough to avoid a slap, ducking his head and
letting his hair fall over his face in something that would be
endearing without the blank *sharp* of his domino's lenses
to make it --

"Robin," he says, in a voice too unfamiliar to have a name,
but --


-- maybe it isn't. For Jason.

"Because that *is* you, to the -- heh -- bone," he says, and
slips two fingers between the belt and Tim's abdomen.

It's a pull, not a yank, hard and slow enough that Tim can
work his hips for the two steps it takes to close the distance,
for Jason's hair to whisper against the cowl.

"That reminds me --"

"Tell me."

"We haven't -- B and I -- told Nightwing your little --" And
Jason doesn't reach between Tim's legs. It's just --
potential. "Secret. Do me a favor and don't even -- hell,
*is* it a secret? Really?"

It's a good question, and Batgirl doesn't really have a smile
for it, and neither does Tim, whoever that is. It's just --

"It's one thing if you're just... shit, what *are* you doing?"

He doesn't -- Tim doesn't *know* --

("What? That it wasn't while I was in the suit? That it wasn't
Batgirl? I -- maybe it should've been -- if the word 'should'
isn't an obscenity in and of itself. The things Batgirl *did*,
never thinking too far ahead, never planning -- the crap she
*pulled*. It's -- better that it wasn't. Even though it
shouldn't be. Something has to be okay in this city.
Something has to be... but you already know that, don't

"*Are* you saving up? Waiting to be legal? Am I gonna go
to grope you one day and hit something real behind that
bat? Am I already? Jesus, I just wanna *know*," Jason
says, and this time it's more than just potential behind the

It's -- *more*, and Tim knows it even before Jason's fingers
reach the catches at his side, and Batgirl knew it even
sooner --

"Okay, *ow* --"

It's just a twist -- Robin's gauntlets took most of the force,
leaving -- just enough.

"Jesus, what --"

And -- Robin is very, very good, which is why Batgirl has any
number of weapons and skills that aren't -- at all -- obvious
in terms of the repertoire of the average non-metahuman
vigilante. Tim doesn't *know*, but --

By the feel, there's enough lipstick left on Tim's mouth to
make the smile as wide and bright as it should be, wide and
bright enough that Jason doesn't reach until Tim's *three*
steps back --

"Oh, no, you're *not* --"

Until Tim can laugh and run -- backwards, until he can
crouch and bend enough. Until Jason's fingers can *just*
brush the bat --

And his midriff --

And the belt --

And one thigh --

As Tim flips back and over, and twists, and shoots --

As Batgirl flies.

"God *dammit*, BG --"

"Tag," Tim says.

Over the comm.


More notes:

I realized in editing that what made me hesitate
with this one -- even more than the unbelievable
levels of schmoop -- was the fact that cutting out
what would've been, ultimately, the first six
thousand words of this story meant cutting out the
little piece of meta that is hugely important to me.
To wit:

The fact that I've honestly come to believe that
everything was about as fine as it could be for
Bruce-and-Jason and Batman-and-Robin right up until
"The Killing Joke." That -- this space we have no
canon for, this stretch of *time* (six months? More?)
between Babs getting shot and the "A Death in the
Family" was probably hugely important to Bruce and
Jason's relationship, and thus to, well, Jason's

The Garzonas incident *should* have been huge, but
we know full well that it really wasn't -- after all,
Bruce doesn't so much as make Jason take a damned
night *off*, despite the fact that he honestly
doesn't know if Jason committed *murder*. It'd be
one thing if it was toonverse -- anyway, dead horse.

Basically, I've decided that *Jason* realized that
Garzonas should've been huge, and it poisoned things
inside him enough that the Batman/Robin *thing* got
poisoned, and then Batgirl gets shot -- *Babs* gets
shot, and --

Well, it had to be really clear to Jason that a) no,
it's *not* a game, and b) Bruce apparently hasn't
figured that out for himself, *Batman* hasn't, so...
what's a fucked-up fifteen year old boy to do if not
say 'fuck it' and spiral his way down into some
extra self-destructive behavior?

Especially if Babs has closed herself off and is busy
*hurting* -- or busy becoming Oracle *away* from the
Lost Boys (insert mad love for GK #43 here), and Dick
is still in metatextual limbo focused too much
on the Titans...

Anyway. I
played with the idea that if Babs went really
*hardcore* about cutting herself off, then Dick would
come back and things would settle down for Bruce,
Jason, *and* Dick, but, you know, what if one day,
years in the past, a young boy with a yen for research
met the world's most fabulous librarian who just
happened to also be Batgirl? She fights crime with Batman
and Robin! And she's a LIBRARIAN!!!!11!

Gotham *needs* a Batgirl. And while it made sense for
Tim to wait months after Jason's death in canon to
seek Dick (and, by extension, Bruce) out -- well. The
medical reports were clear. Babs *couldn't* be Batgirl

That little fucker would find her in the *hospital*.

And, with a little spackle and the helpful utter lack
of concrete canon for just how much time exists
between TKJ and DitF...

Well, maybe one night when Jason was feeling lower
than low, wondering what his world would've been like
if he'd had a mother who didn't die...

Maybe he saw a red-haired apparition kicking and
dancing her way through the world, and things looked
a little brighter.

Maybe. ;-)


.A wondrous mirror.