The air, you breathe
by Te
January 28, 2004

Disclaimers: The apotheosis of not mine.

Spoilers: None. Assume vague current Batman-Robin

Summary: Batman and Robin vs. The Terrible Slash

Ratings Note: NC-17. Content some readers may find

Author's Note: Jack's bunny, I'm almost sure. I told
Shrift about it, and she told *me* to make it a
challenge. And so this story is for the first annual
(ha!) Sex Pollen Challenge.

Acknowledgments: Shrift and the Jack also audienced,
and gave many helpful suggestions and noises of
encouragement. And then the Jack *beta-read*.
Which is cool. :D

Feedback: Worshipped.


Tim has become fond of incendiary devices over the
years. Not *too* fond -- that way lies madness, criminal
activity, and even stranger costumes -- but fond, just
the same. There are any number of occasions when
small, containable fires and explosions come in handy,
after all, and also...

Well, fire's kind of pretty.

He's not *immune*.

And fire's *especially* pretty when it's saving his ass,
as it is now. Yet another Ivy-infected greenhouse, yet
another case of near-death-by-vegetation. Just near
enough to be annoying.

Tim has nothing in particular *against* plants, but he
has to admit a certain level of satisfaction at burning

Hey, they attacked first.

And really, Batman's got the woman herself under control,
so he's *supposed* to handle the clean-up. And maybe
crack jokes. 'Burn, baby, burn' is just a little too retro,
though. 'Whee' is probably inappropriate, considering the
fact that some of the plants are actually screaming in
pain with their little plant mouths. 'Ashes to ashes...'

He shrugs internally and keeps tossing his bombs.

He can hear Ivy cursing incoherently over his shoulder,
so *that's* going according to plan.

Maybe they can start carrying napalm. He thinks about
it while dodging some especially vengeful-looking

Possibly too Apocalypse Now.

"You always HURT MY PLANTS."

Tim smirks back over his shoulder. "And you always
state the blindingly obvious, but you don't hear *me*
complaining." There, that wasn't bad. A little predictable,
sure, but an opening line was --  Audrey III, trying to
bite off his head.

He dodges, and Batman doesn't actually *say*
anything, but there's a lecture in the line of his

Right. Be careful, Robin. He gets it. He does.

But he's *supposed* to make with the snappy repartee.
It goes with the tights and everything.

The mean green mother from... well, Gotham Heights,
goes down with a snarl and a sploosh and he hears Ivy
make that 'oof' noise that tends to mean -- yep. Another
glance and Batman has her tied to a pillar, tranq gun
poised to deliver the knock-out if she so much as
thinks funny at a plant.

Which only leaves the rest of the clean-up. Fine by him,
he's got homework. Homework that was *technically*
supposed to be done before patrol tonight, but hey,
it's only English. Poetry analysis can wait until he's
firmly back in bullshit mode, and he still has to check
to make sure all the evil-ized plants are burning.

And, because Batman is anal like that, that as many of
the *non* evil plants are as safe as possible.

He goes into motion-detector mode, scanning for
anything suspicious --

"Fire. It's always *fire* with you!"

"Fire purifies," offers the Bat in full sarcasm mode. Not
bad. All sorts of literary allusions there.

But there's something kind of funny about the planter
box in the corner. The bulbous little pods aren't
moving so much as --

"Fire also *generates*, Batman."

-- swelling. Oh, damn. "Batman --" Is all he manages
to get out before the weird little pods *burst* open,
exploding like a row of fireworks and filling the air
with God only knew what.

"Masks," he hears Batman say, and yeah, he's on it,
but he's also *in* it.

As in covered in it. Glittery blue dust sticking to his
sweaty arms and face and burning the *shit* out of
his eyes and *why* did he have the lenses retracted?
And he hears something moving *fast* and drops


"I'm good, but I can't --" He coughs helplessly and
rolls, knowing there's a table around here *somewhere*.
He feels roasted vines crumble beneath him as he
goes. "I can't *see*."

"I've got you."

And he does, strong arms holding Tim tight to his
chest, which is both embarrassing and reassuring,
but -- "Ivy --"

"Gone. We'll deal with her later."

Well, it's not like he hasn't had long nights before.
Batman gets him outside -- he can mainly tell by the
cool air and the reassuring stink of car exhaust -- and
sets him on his feet.

The plants are still screaming somewhere behind him
and --

"Hold still."

Gauntleted hand on his face, gloved fingers forcing his
eye open and there isn't time to do more than bite his
lip before the saline solution hits. He keeps his teeth
right there while Bruce goes for the other, and then
just lets his eyes do all the crying they want. Better in
the long run.

"Do I even... wanna know what I look like?"

"Hm. You might consider changing your name."

"Blue jay. Ha freaking ha. Just tell me this stuff washes
off." He still can't see Bruce as more than a large,
wavery outline vaguely in front of him.

"Keep blinking. And if it *doesn't* wash off... Bruce
Wayne will have to come up with a good explanation
for his stockholders."

"Aw, man, they got you, too?"

"I've given some thought to expanding the masks,"
he says, and there's something a little off about his

"We need *napalm*."

"We need... hmm."

And he wants to ask 'what?' But mostly he kind of
knows. Ivy doesn't just kick a guy when she can strangle
him, too, and there's no *way* the blue junk was just a
diversion. "We need to get back to the Cave."

"... yes."

Just a *moment's* hesitation, but there just the same.
And everything *he's* feeling *could* just boil down to
various endorphins except for how it really doesn't. He
blinks and tries to focus. "Uh." Tries really *hard*, and
the dark outline of the Batsuit solidifies for a second.

The outline shakes. No, the *world* shakes.

Or... no, he's definitely shaking.

Hard hand on his shoulder. "Steady."

Except that *Bruce* doesn't sound all that steady, even
when he gives the command for the car to come find


And then he's being yanked in mostly a straight line,
and the car resolves itself out of the hazy, smoky
gloom. "I don't --"

"I know."

Bruce pushes him into the passenger seat, and Tim
reaches for the belt and... misses. Twice.

He blinks and tries again and Bruce catches his wrists
and holds them and does up the *full* restraints.

"I wasn't planning on jumping into traffic," is what he
tries to say, but he doesn't think it comes out all that

"Trust me."

"Yeah, okay..."

Bruce gives his wrists a squeeze and shuts the door,
moving around to the other side and doing up *his*

And this is important; there's a question here he
absolutely should be asking, but the seat is soft and
hard against his back and the straps are holding him
*down*, and then Bruce says "autopilot, Cave."

And they're moving.


Or... no. Tim is, for some reason, pressing himself
back against the seat and digging his fingernails into
the dash *like* they were going fast. But they aren't.

He gets a grunt in response.

He's usually pretty good at translating those, but this
one is just kind of beyond him. If the straps would
just stop *touching* him, he could figure it out. He
knows he could. He struggles and hears himself
making frustrated sounds, and somehow that just
makes it... different.

Definitely different.

There's a clue here, and if he wasn't so hard he
couldn't think --

"Tim. Stop that."

"I have to --" Except that thought just kind of dies,
because, hey, he can see again. Mostly.

Mostly enough to see Bruce looking at him, absolutely
rigid except for one hand which is... tugging at his
own restraints. One big, hard hand.

There's *definitely* a clue here. He just needs help
finding it. And Bruce is good at that learning process
thing, so Tim reaches across and grabs that hand and
drags it to where he needs it. And Bruce makes a kind
of strangled noise that Tim can't hold on to, because
*Bruce* is holding on.

To the straps between his legs, tugging them away
from his crotch to leave room for his knuckles and this
is it, this is exactly what he's been missing. Tim rocks
up and reaches down, holding that fist in place and
groaning. He's so hard and it's so *good*, rubbing
himself on those knuckles. Even through the tights.

"I want to be naked."

"I know."

Which is an odd enough response that Tim looks over
at Bruce... who isn't looking at him anymore. He's
staring straight forward, jaw working and body set in
this weird position like maybe he's pretending he
doesn't *have* a right arm.

Even while that hand is moving, pushing hard against
Tim's jock.

"Is this..." He frowns. He doesn't know what he wants
to ask. He watches his own hands work, watches them
petting Bruce's fingers, stroking and pulling them.
Watches them tugging Bruce's hand out of its fist and
turning it so that the palm is a faintly curved place he
can thrust into. "Bruce..."

"Ivy. Poison... Ivy."

"I think she got us," he says, and that's the funniest
thing he's *ever* said, especially since laughing makes
the muscles of his stomach flex and pull and it's like
every feeling in the world is flowing into his dick. He
needs... he lets go of Bruce long enough to yank at
the tunic, tugging it up far enough that he can tug
his tights *down*, and the first touch of Bruce's hand
on just his abdomen makes him groan.

"Tim --"

"Please. Oh, please..." It's not funny anymore. It's
burning him alive and he shoves Bruce's hand under
his jock and it's cooler. Better. The gauntlet. "Bruce,
I need --" And the rest falls apart into a sob when
Bruce wraps his hand around Tim's dick and

"You have to hold on --"

"Can't. I can't, I'm sorry," and he *is*. He's fucking
Bruce's fist and he's so sorry because he gets it. This
is sex, and this is sex with *Bruce*, and he can't stop.
Can't even keep himself from folding his hands
around Bruce's fist to *keep* it there.

And it's dry and it hurts and he's burning so much,
everywhere Bruce isn't touching him. Burning and
needing and desperate and all he can do is bite his lip
to hold in the scream when he comes.

It doesn't work.

But he can breathe again. He hadn't even realized he
was holding his breath, but he can breathe again and
forcibly unclench his hands from around Bruce's own.
Sticky hands. He whimpers and holds them away from

And this is Bruce's cue to say something, but all he
does is *slide* his hand up off Tim's cock and.

Tim can't look away.

He's... Bruce is sniffing his fingers, other hand wrapped
tight around the restraints. And licking. Sucking.

Tim hears himself gasp and realizes he wasn't breathing.
Again. The burn comes back like a whip crack, slicing
him open from his dick to his throat and he doesn't have
time to so much as *soften* before the blood is
pounding in his ears again. "Bruce." It comes out

Bruce freezes. Pulls his fingers out of his mouth with
a wet pop. Licks his lips. And opens his restraints.

"Oh, *fuck*." He manages to get through half of his
own, and then there's a metallic flash and they're just
*gone*, knife shuddering half-buried in the dash.

Bruce hauls Tim over the center console and into his
lap and Tim has enough time to hope the autopilot's
computer is *really* intelligent before Bruce is kissing
him, hot mouth and slick tongue and hard teeth on his
lip and jaw.

The suit's in the way and Tim yanks at it for a second
before Bruce *claws* it open, tearing the collar and
leaning in and sucking on Tim's Adam's apple for a
breath-stopping moment before he moves on, sucking
him a necklace of bites and Tim throws his head back
and yells.

Pumping his hips against Bruce's chest and scrabbling
for something solid to hold -- there. One hand on the
back of the seat and the other on Bruce's shoulder,
and Bruce's hands...

All over him. Sliding under the cape to squeeze his ass
and yank the tights further down, down to his hips,
yanking *Tim* down until he's straddling Bruce's lap,
bruised by fingers and armor and needing *more*.
"Bruce --"

The kiss sucks the air out of his body, the mind out of
his head, Bruce's tongue fucking its way in and Bruce's
hands pulling Tim's body against his own. Moving him,
urging him on, and Tim has to *fight* to get his hands
between them, fight himself to stop thrusting long
enough to get at the catches of the Batsuit and down
to skin.

Bruce grunts into his mouth and breaks the kiss long
enough to take a shuddering breath.

"Tim." His voice cracks on the word and then he's
biting Tim's throat again, hands flexing *hard* on Tim's
hips until he can get past Bruce's jock, and he's hot and
hard, thick in his hands and leaking, and Tim knows
he's making fucked-up, hurt-sounding noises, but he
can't stop until he gets their dicks together, until he can
jerk them roughly.

No rhythm, and the car takes a turn hard enough to
nearly throw him off, but Bruce just holds on and keeps

Moaning now, sounding hurt and desperate, and one
hand slides back between his cheeks and strokes.

Once, *hard*, and Tim's dick spits pre-come all over
them, all over his hands.

Slick and hot, and he leans in for an awkward kiss just
in time for the car to swerve again, and it just drags
his mouth over Bruce's cheek and into the weirdly spicy
*grit* of Ivy's pollen.

And he knows it's a bad idea, knows it's just going to
make it worse, but he can't *stop* licking, jerking them
both off while Bruce pants and groans into his ear, *licks*
his ear, rumbles, "you feel..."

But if he was going to say anything else, it's lost under
Tim's shout as Bruce shoves one finger *in*. Just a little
bit, and it's the come-slick hand, but it's not slick enough.
It hurts and it feels *wrong*, but he couldn't stop moving
his hips if he *tried*.

He can't try.

And every thrust of his hips pushes it in a little further,
drives him up higher, blue on his tongue and venomous
green in his mind and it takes a moment to figure out
that it was *Bruce* who just came.

Tim's still hard, still moving in the slick mess of his

And Bruce's finger is... pushing. Opening him.

"Bruce," and it sounds like he's begging, and he *is*,
but Tim doesn't have any words left but "Bruce" and
"please" and "*please* --"

"Don't move. Don't --"

And Tim gasps and the finger is *all* the way in, never
coming out, never -- can't -- "Oh *God* --"

He comes, breathless and arching back, arching *away*,
but Bruce wraps his free arm around him and pulls him
in tight. And holds him still, Tim's face pressed almost too
hard against Bruce's throat.

"Bruce --"

Bruce's finger crooks in either warning or
acknowledgment, and Tim sobs into the sweat-salt of
Bruce's skin. Licks.

Breathes and stays still.

The car rolls to a stop, but Bruce doesn't move until the
ticking of the engine is audible, and then he half-falls,
half-pulls them out of the car, holding Tim's head against
him until they're on solid ground again.

The air of the Cave is fresh and cool, but the sex funk
spills out after them like smoke, and Bruce doesn't take
his finger all the way out of Tim's ass until Tim's bent over
the hood. Then he pulls it out slowly.

"Antidote," he says, one hand pressed to the center of
Tim's back.

"We... I... pollen. Allergic reaction." There's more there,
he's so *close*, but his hands just keep trying to tell him
how *smooth* the hood of the Batmobile is through the
gloves. And his body wants him to know how solid Bruce's
hand is, keeping him down.

"Yes," Bruce says, and he definitely *sounds* like he's got
it, and for a moment Tim doesn't know whether to feel
relieved or desperate, but when Bruce moves his hand, it's
only to slide it down his spine, making Tim shiver.

Movement behind him, and then there's no time at all,
just Bruce's hands on his ass, spreading him open and
"oh *fuck* --"

Tonguing him. Kissing him there, *inside*, and it's wet,
so *wet*, and his breath comes out on a whine.

The next breath on a groan, because Bruce is *tongue*-
fucking him, holding him open and licking his way *in*,
and Tim's knees buckle. He's bent over the car, but he's
just not doing a good job of holding on with his hands.
Sliding off is a danger, or would be if Bruce didn't have a
freaking death-grip on his hips. Bruce's hands.

Bruce's *mouth*, hot and vicious and giving him not
enough and too much and Tim shakes his head, dragging
his face against the finish and leaving a trail of spit. The
burn has him again, *has* him, and being hard is just
another way to ache.

And even knowing what's coming isn't enough to help
when it *does*. Because Bruce's tongue is slickly
muscular and so *good*, but it isn't enough. Not long
enough, not *hard* enough, and every thrust is a tease
and he can't even push *back* on it because Bruce is
holding on so tight.


Growling little purr that sends shudders up his spine and
down his shaking legs.

"Bruce, *please* --"

Nasty wet *noise* and there's nothing but air and the
*feel* of Bruce. Still holding him open and exposed and
Tim feels himself flex and bites his fist against his own
whimper. And then Bruce is moving again, pushing him
flat against the car and -- "Hold on."

Tim does, curling his fingers into ineffectual claws and
struggling to brace his feet. He hears Bruce taking
something from the belt, and knowing *what* doesn't
help, because the first cool touch of Bruce's slick fingers
shocks a mostly breathless scream out of him, high and
quiet and nowhere near enough to express what it's like
when one slides *in*.

One, and fucking him from the start, slicking him up
inside and making him gasp and rock, making him sweat,
and the smell of himself overpowers everything else,
everything but the raw, hot need that isn't going

And Bruce slides in another finger and just *works* him,
thrusting *hard* and brushing his prostate on every
stroke, or maybe every other, he can't hold on to it. He's
barely holding on to the *car*. All he can do is spread his
legs and beg with every animal-stupid noise that comes
out of his mouth.

All he can think is "he's going to fuck me. He really is,"
and he bites his fist harder and waits for it.

Wants it so bad he can't see, or maybe his eyes are
closed, or maybe he's just *blind*, because there's
nothing when Bruce finally pulls out.

Nothing when Bruce spreads him even wider.

And fucking *stars*, because the first nudge barely lasts
a heartbeat before Bruce is *pushing* in, making him
forget to bite down, making him *yell*. And Bruce just
strokes a shaking hand down his spine and keeps going.
Filling him up and working him open, and he thinks he
might be crying and he *knows* he's shaking.

The shaking just rocks the feeling all through him,
knocking aside the burn for something hotter and deeper
and stranger.


The first real thrust makes him jerk.

The next drives him up on his toes, and he *locks* there,
unable to move until Bruce grabs his hips and pulls him
back and *down*, and he manages to catch himself on
his hands, but that just means there's nothing to keep
the scream down.

Or the next.

Or the next.

And the one after that cracks his voice, but he can't stop,
because Bruce *won't* stop, and it's like nothing he's
ever felt. More intense with every thrust, the way Bruce is
*moving* him into it. Making him take it, and Tim claws
at the hood and bucks and yells again and sobs until he
can't stand his own voice.

Until he has to yank at one of Bruce's hands and drag it
up over his mouth, and that's better, so much *better*.

Weird plastic taste of lubricant and the scrape of calluses
over his cheek. Something to hold on to, to bite as Bruce
keeps fucking him. Better than the car. Bruce in him and
over him and *on* him, and Tim feels something... give.
And he can breathe, he can feel his dick and the way the
head is painting stripes of pre-come all over the car with
every thrust. He can feel himself.

Fucked and lost and desperate, so desperate that it isn't
even a surprise when the next hard thrust drives the
orgasm right out of him.

Wet patter of his come on the hood and Bruce groans and
holds on, tilting Tim's head back and pulling his hips *in*,
fucking in hard and shallow and ragged, again and again
until Tim thinks he might *die* like this.

Until he starts to want to.

And then Bruce jerks and comes, holding Tim in place until
they both stop shuddering, and then for a few moments

"This will be uncomfortable," he says, and Tim whimpers
into Bruce's hand. Twice. "Can you stand?"

"Not... yet."

Bruce lowers him to his knees next to the car's front tire.
"Don't move."

Tim nods and tries to catch his breath.

The feel of the injector against his neck brings it all flooding
back, but the shot is over before he can tense, drugs
rushing through him and knocking him pretty much flat, on
top of everything else. There's a faint hint of motor oil down
here, and Bruce is looming over him, cape half-folded in his

"Anti. Antihistamines," he manages.


He hears Bruce shoot himself up and then nothing at all
until he wakes up... on his stomach. He doesn't sleep on his

He doesn't sleep on hospital gurneys, either. He blinks
awake, mind clear and body wired and weak. Or maybe the
other way around. Bruce is sitting in a chair beside him,
reading print-outs with his usual grim determination. His
suit is pristine.

Tim sits up -- gingerly -- and looks down at his own.
Perfect.  And he's just about to have a major freak-out,
despite the lingering burn in his eyes and his throat and
his ass, when he sees the fraying thread over the 'R'.
Spare suit. He goes back to breathing.

Much easier to freak out about Bruce -- or *Alfred* --
changing his clothes while he was dead to the world. "Uh."

"How are you feeling?"

Ten million ways to answer that question, but for *that*
voice... "Sore. Vaguely hungover. I need coffee or food or
both, I think."

Bruce reaches behind himself and produces a tray about
a third denuded of croissants and fruit. And hands him a
tall glass of apple juice. "Better than coffee," he says, and
goes back to reading his reports.

And... yeah. He can go with this. He needs to eat, and
start coming up with a lie his Dad can deal with. And...

"Your stepmother called in sick for you. She was highly
sympathetic when Alfred told her about that stomach
virus that came over you so suddenly. You're to call home
as soon as you... feel better."

Another hesitation. Not much of one, but then Tim
doesn't *need* much anymore. He finishes his croissant
and slips down off the bed.

And *looks* at Bruce.

The papers rattle in Bruce's hands for a moment before
he sets them down and folds his hands together. "Tim.
About last night. We... we need..."

He rests his hands on Bruce's shoulders. Remembering
and memorizing the feel of all that hot, hard muscle under
his hands, only the Batsuit between them. He thinks about
his hands and the shoulders and the suit, and he does
*not* think about anything else. "You want to know what
*I* think we need, Bruce?"

Bruce shudders and drops his head a little more before
clenching his jaw. "Tell me."

"We need to repress as we have never repressed before.
We're going to build a huge, wooden box, and then we're
going to dip it in molten iron --"

"That won't work --"

"And then we're going to take our big iron box and shove
*everything* that happened last night in it. Starting right
from that chat you had with Ivy about fire. *That's* what
we're going to do. Comments?"

Bruce blinks, opening and closing his mouth like a very
large, very grim fish for several moments.


"No comments whatsoever."

"Good. Now I'm going to finish my breakfast over...
there. And you?"

"Will keep cross-referencing these police reports until
something cracks. Over here."

Tim nods in satisfaction and goes back to eating. And
planning out Robin's First Flamethrower.

He thinks he'll put a little 'R' on it.