Bat Snapshots 22: Scars

Tim paced around his room unsure of what to do. His career as Robin was going well and it was the last thing he wanted to screw up, slightly edging out his relationship with Bruce. He had given very strict guidelines when it came to him him joining the field and Tim knew if he didn’t stay careful Bruce could very much view this as a liability. Patrol tonight had gone as perfectly as it could have, almost no injuries on their side, and Tim knew this was a perfect opportunity to come clean, there being no tension between the two of them.

He went back and forth between whether or not to confess everything to Bruce, but he finally decided that Batman should know about any and everything that could impact their work out on patrol. The last thing he wanted was to make a mistake that could lead to someone, especially either of them, getting hurt.

Once he felt he was ready, Tim made his way down to the cave where he knew Bruce would be working on the report from their latest case. He made sure his steps were quiet enough that they wouldn’t disturb Bruce from his work and waited from the training mats until he saw that Bruce close the document.

Before Bruce could move onto to something else, Tim stepped up beside him and asked, “Can I talk to you for a minute? It’s sort of important.”

Turning away from the console, Bruce nodded his head concerned. It wasn’t often that tone of voice came with good news. “Does it have something to do with last night’s patrol?” If it did, Bruce didn’t see why it couldn’t wait until tomorrow or why Tim was acting out of character.

“Umm, no,” Tim shook his head. “It’s about me and…it’s about me.”

Bruce stood up from his chair and offered, “We should talk about this upstairs. Business is for the cave, Tim. Family is handled in the Manor.”

Tim hadn’t been expecting the move, but he agreed nonetheless. They walked up the stairs in complete silence and only interacted when Bruce held the door open for Tim and when he motioned for him to take a seat beside him on the couch. Along the way, Bruce tried to think of anything Tim would want to talk to him about and Tim focused on Bruce having called him family.

As they sat in awkward silence, Bruce asked, “What is it? Is something wrong?”

Tim shifted in his seat for a moment before deciding it was best to start from the beginning. “I know you don’t like my parents-”

“‘Don’t like’ is putting it lightly.” Even with the harsh statement Bruce was trying to get rid of some of the tension between them and it seemed to help as the teenager let out some air and gave him a little smile.

“Yeah, I guess you sort of hate them and I get it. Believe me, I understand why you didn’t like them even before they-” Tim paused for a moment as he tried to recollect himself before going on. “I told you a lot of stuff and some of it you figured out on your own. To be honest, I’m not entirely sure whether you know this already and I don’t think it would be something you’d be able to talk about easily considering you’re, well, you and I know-”

“Tim, take a deep breath,” Bruce calmly instructed. It wouldn’t do either of them any help if Tim didn’t remain level headed throughout the conversation and right now he seemed to be panicking. “You don’t have to rush this.”

“Sorry, I don’t know why this is so hard. I went over everything I wanted to say in my head like a million times, but now…” Letting himself stop to catch up on everything he had thought over, Tim worked up the courage to look Bruce in the eye and started over. “I know you hate my parents and how – you know – and I know that you’ve been looking into some stuff that you didn’t talk to me about.” As he watched Bruce stiffen at the accusation, Tim promised him, “I’m not upset about that. I knew what this was going to be like when I signed up and that’s not what this is about.” Making sure to word everything properly, Tim finished, “I know you’ve been looking at some of the things that come along with neglect and abuse and that you don’t want it to mess anything up in the field or with me living with you now that you’re my dad, but I figured it would be better for me to tell you outright instead of you speculating or trying to piece everything together yourself.”

Although Bruce might not want to admit it, Tim hadn’t been wrong with any of his acquisitions and Bruce very much wanted to know more about Tim, but he had also wanted to do it without alerting Tim to his intentions. Nevertheless, he was sure to promise, “Whatever it is that you have to say, it isn’t going to bother me, Tim. I want to help you and I know I’m not the best at emotional things, but I want to do my best with you.”

Tim nodded before starting again. “So…my parents. They basically did the stuff that we’ve already talked about; they weren’t ever around most of the time and when they were they were angry and loud and it wasn’t a lot of fun growing up next door.”

As Tim made an off hand motion in the direction of the now empty Drake Mansion, Bruce couldn’t help but feel angry at himself for not noticing everything before. If he had Tim would have had an easier life, definitely a healthier one, but a part of him – a selfish part he didn’t want to admit existed – knew that it was because of his past that Tim had found his way into Bruce’s life. While he would do everything in his power to make Tim’s childhood a better one, there would be a part of him regretting the decision if it drew the boy away from him.

Ignorant to the Bruce’s dilemma, Tim went on. “It screwed me up a little. I know we’ve already talked about it some and I saw Leslie for therapy for a while, but there are some things I haven’t really mentioned to anyone.” Knowing there would be no turning back after this point, Tim fought through his dry mouth and explained, “One of my nannies didn’t really like the way things were going happening, I think she hated my parents more than you if it’s possible, but she also knew she’d be fired if she said anything and that nothing would happen. Instead of saying anything to them, she took me to see a doctor a few town away, one she knew wouldn’t tell anyone or warn my parents, and had something like a psych eval. It wasn’t really conclusive of a lot of things because I was young and the doctor wasn’t really experienced with abused kids but he did say there was something wrong with me and he recommended another doctor, one in Gotham, for me to see. I went to the second doctor and she said that I had depression and might become prone to self harm or suicidal thoughts as I got older and that it would be best to start getting me away from my parents and into like a safer place but that never happened.” Tim knew the worst part was over now and gauging from Bruce’s reaction he didn’t seem too upset with him. He wasn’t sure what he expected from Bruce, but it wasn’t the first time he’d have to remind himself that Bruce is different from his parents. “I don’t know if the doctor was afraid of upsetting my parents because she knew that they had a lot of leverage in her field and it could lead to her losing her job or that one of my other caretakers noticed that I was leaving the house more often, but someone told my parents and they fired the nanny and stopped the doctors visits. They said something along the lines of, ‘There is to be no mention of this ever again.'”

Bruce wasn’t quite sure what he was supposed to do, but he moved closer to Tim and put a comforting hand on his knee. Tim didn’t seem to look upset, but Bruce knew he still might not show him just how distressed he was. Taking a moment to contemplate in silence, Bruce decided he knew exactly what to do. “We can see Leslie if you want. It’s been years since your last diagnosis and it wouldn’t hurt to get her opinion and see if she can recommend anything.”

Expecting their conversation to focus more on the impact this would have on their night jobs, Tim barely got out, “Yeah, that would be fine.”

Cautiously breaking the silence that followed, Bruce added, “You mentioned the possibility of self harm and suicidal thought.” He ignored how Tim’s hands clenched down on the sofa and asked, “Did that ever happen? Have you thought about hurting or killing yourself?”

“Hasn’t everyone our line of work?” Tim really didn’t want to talk about this and he had been hoping Bruce wouldn’t have paid much attention to it, but Tim knew better than to doubt Bruce’s attentive skills. Making sure his wording didn’t give too much away or imply something that wasn’t true, Tim admitted, “I thought about it a little. I never did anything, but sometimes I would imagine what happen if I just didn’t use my grappling hook or if I was too slow in dodging a bullet, but I never acted on it. This was mostly in the very beginning, when you and I weren’t very close I promise, Bruce.” Glancing up to measure Bruce’s reaction, Tim gave him a small smile as he finished, “I know I became Robin to help you, but it’s also good for me too. I know it sounds cheesy, but I think being Robin saved me from thinking too much about them; it definitely made me a lot happier than they ever did.”

Bruce returned the smile and assured Tim, “Making you Robin saved me from a fate I can’t imagine. I would be a much different person if you hadn’t come along demanding to be a part of my life.”

Tim enjoyed the moment, it certainly dispelled many of his fears, but he still had to ask, “Is anything going to change? Are we going to go back to how things were in the beginning?”

Voice thick with resolution, Bruce held Tim’s gaze as he said, “No. This doesn’t mean anything has to change or that I will look at you differently. You are still my son, one of the most important people in my life, and I value my relationship with you above most everything else. I won’t let it get back to when you wanted to die, Tim. I promise, it’s never going to be like that again.”

Unable to look Bruce in the eye, Tim squeezed his chest and hoped it was enough to show his appreciation. “Can we keep this private? I know some people will have to know, it’s impossible to hide something from Alfred, but I don’t want anyone else to find out.”

It didn’t take long for Bruce to figure out, “This about Dick.”

Tim didn’t say anything for a minute. He didn’t quite know why he didn’t want Dick to know, but as he thought about it he reasoned, “I know he’s not going to think that bad of me, Dick would never do that, but I also know he’s going to try too hard to make up for not noticing before. He’s going to be afraid of messing up and watch over me as if I’m still a kid.”

While he might not like it, Bruce knew it was true. “He doesn’t need to know. This can stay between us, Alfred, and Leslie.”

Tim nodded and enjoyed the silence for a moment before he worked himself up to ask, “Does this change patrolling? I know it could be bad if something went wrong…but do you think it means things will have to change?”

Bruce didn’t want to give Tim any false hope, so he admitted, “It will have to wait until we see a doctor, Tim. I need to know that I’m not putting anyone, including most of all you, at risk.”

Even if he didn’t like it, Tim assured Bruce, “I understand.”

Lip thinning at the defeated tone in Tim’s voice, Bruce thought through what Tim would need to hear. When he felt Tim getting ready to get up, Bruce repeated, “This doesn’t change anything between us, Tim. I still love you and nothing will change that.”

It seemed to work because Tim gave him a small smile before leaving to go to his room. Once again alone, Bruce gave himself a moment to consider everything that had happened. He had always suspected that Tim was hiding some parts of his past from him, but it wasn’t something Bruce was going to force him to disclose. Not seeing anything else for him to do, Bruce set a reminder to contact Leslie first thing in the morning and went to his room to see if he could find anymore information on Tim’s condition and what he would need from him.

Ignoring Dick’s calls to hurry up, Tim emptied his bag onto his bed. Stupidly, he had forgotten to pack his medicine beneath everything else so that it would be harder for Dick to find it.

This was his first time spending extended time over at Dick’s apartment and he wasn’t used to having to hide his medicine. Everyone in the Manor was pretty open with the subject, talking about it candidly and making sure Tim always had what he needed. When he and Bruce would go out of town, Bruce would usually keep the pills with him as most people were willing to overlook someone as rich as him having strange pills in his bag. So far no one outside of a tight circle of family and doctors knew and that was how Tim wanted to keep it.

Tim stuffed cotton balls in the bottle to keep them from moving around and wrapped the bottle in a small towel to prevent the pills from making too much noise before repacking the bag and rushing down stairs to find Dick and Bruce talking amongst themselves at the table. Seeing his little brother finally finished and carrying his bags, Dick asked, “What took you so long?”

“I forgot to pack an extra pair of shoes,” Tim lied easily. He set his bags down on the floor and began pulling out a seat at the table when Dick motioned for him to stop.

For a second Tim wondered if something had come up and they would have to reschedule, but Dick explained, “We’re leaving right now.” Signaling to the garage and pulling out his keys, Dick added, “You can start the car and we’ll get going right away. I can carry your bags in after Bruce and I finish our conversation.”

Tim turned to Bruce and said a quick goodbye before leaving to do the same with Alfred and find Dick’s car. While he adjusted the settings from his seat, Tim knew that inside the Manor Dick and Bruce were probably talking about him, Bruce maybe not liking the idea of Tim spending a few weeks of his summer vacation away in Bludhaven.

It had taken weeks of debating between them but eventually Tim had been able to convince Bruce that it would be good for him, a break from Gotham and a chance to spend time with someone who didn’t know his secret. He knew Bruce would never actually tell Dick, especially after Tim begged him not to, but the stress he would put on his safety would probably be enough for Dick to start asking questions.

As he heard the door to the garage open, Tim perked up and watched as Dick put the bags in the trunk and made his way to the driver’s side and take his place. Once he was buckled up, Dick asked, “Are you sure you didn’t forget anything?”

“No, I have everything.” When Dick nodded and began pulling out from the garage, Tim asked, “What were you and Bruce talking about?”

Dick didn’t say anything for a moment and Tim began to think that Dick looked a lot more apprehensive than usual. Dick had been the one to come up with the idea for the visit after complaining that he wasn’t seeing Tim enough, but it wouldn’t be crazy to think that he’d realized he didn’t want to spend what little summer-like weather Bludhaven had looking after a teenager.

Tim turned his gaze away from Dick and began thinking about feigning a reason to be come back to Gotham but Dick’s voice cut through as he explained, “Bruce just has a little trouble with birds leaving the nest. He doesn’t like the idea of him not being there if we need him, especially considering we’ll be patrolling together. Tonight he wanted to make sure I was up to date on your training and everything.”

Unsure of whether or not Dick was complaining, Tim decided against commenting and simply looked forward.

Not wanting to think too much of the silence, Dick focused on the busy road and wanted to imagine that Tim might just be feeling tired from a long day. He considered leaving Tim alone to rest, but a quick look over to the passenger seat told him just how uncomfortable Tim was. Concerned, Dick decided to ask a pretty straightforward question. “Are you okay? You look a little tense and you’re never tense when you’re with me.”

“It’s nothing.”

“Tim.” Dick didn’t like using his stern voice, but he knew when to use it.

Playing with his fingers as he tried to collect himself, Tim asked, “Do you still wanna do this?” He was quick to assure Dick, “I’d understand if you changed your mind. A few weeks is a long time and you’re probably busy with work and everything.”

“No, Tim. Of course not.” Looking back to see Tim’s expression unchanged, Dick assured him, “I’ve been looking forward to this for a long time. It’s been too long since we’ve had any time by ourselves and I’ve missed having you around.”

“I’ve missed you too, Dick-”

“So what’s with the all the second guessing?”

“You looked upset about something and I thought you had changed your mind,” Tim answered honestly.

Dick sighed before admitting, “Bruce and I had a less than stellar conversation and I’m still trying to digest it.” It had been a while since he and Bruce had had a heated talk, but for whatever reason this trip was enough.

Curious about just how much Bruce had told him, Tim asked, “Do you want to talk about it?”

Smiling over to his little brother, Dick promised, “It’s nothing, Tim.”

Mimicking the same stern voice Dick had used a few moments ago, Tim simply used his best imitation of Bruce’s glare to say, “Dick.”

Taking a moment to word things properly, Dick blurted out, “I just get the feeling that Bruce is a lot more protective of you than he has ever been with me.”

“Does that bother you?” Tim didn’t want to explain everything to Dick, but if it meant dispelling any fears or jealousy Dick might have he was more than willing to admit anything Dick needed him to.

“I’m not jealous, Tim. I’m beyond happy that you and Bruce are getting along so well, but I do think there’s something you two are keeping from me.” Turning to see Tim unable to look up, Dick assured him, “I’m not upset either. You and B are partners and that means you’ll have to keep some things private, even from me.”

“Dick, I’m the one who asked not to tell you. Bruce was just doing what I asked him to.” The last thing Tim wanted was to was cause a rift between Dick and Bruce.

Dick slowly repeated, “I’m not upset, Tim.” I just want you to know that no matter what it is, I won’t think any different of you.”

Tim knew there would be no way to know for sure until push came to shove and he wanted to hold out on that as long as he could. “Can we talk about something else? Something lighter?”

Happy for the chance to change the subject, Dick asked, “What movies do you want to watch tonight? I have all of our favorites plus some new ones Wally promised we’d like.”

“I want to start with the new ones and work back to the classics.”

“Good idea little brother.”

Dick fidgeted from his position in his chair and tried to imagine he was anywhere else. When he had gotten here a few hours ago he had been meaning to silently break in and out with Tim before anyone noticed, but as fate would have it he was now sitting in the middle of the very thing he had been trying to avoid. Apparently the gala had started earlier than Dick had expected and now he was pretending to be interested in a discussion that he had already lost track of.

Bruce had been adamant about him making a public appearance after not showing up to an event in months and any escape would have to be made without him knowing and right now he was across the room talking with someone Dick recognised to be a board member for Wayne Enterprises. Dick waited for Bruce to get slightly inebriated before he heavily implied to a few businessmen and women that Bruce might be interested in hiring them. It only took a few minutes for them to crowd around him and ask for private meetings.

Once Bruce was out of the picture, Dick was able to break away from the crowd with a feigned trip to the bathroom and quickly sprint his way to Tim’s room. He and Tim could always use the window exit and hightail it to his car.

There were a few stranglers moving around the first floor and looking at the artwork, but as soon as Dick climbed the stairs up to the bedrooms he knew he didn’t have to worry. Finding Tim’s room empty, Dick considered his options. His brother might have been able to find a way out before Dick even showed up. Dick dug out his phone from his pocket and called Tim hoping to find out where his little brother was. When he got Tim’s voicemail, Dick sighed and looked around the room looked for some clue to where Tim might have gone. He knew Tim kept a thorough schedule somewhere, but he’d have to look hard to find it.

The first place he looked was Tim’s nightstands and under his pillows and when Dick found nothing he turned to his desk. He moved around a few stray papers and channeled his inner Alfred to straightened up the mess when he found a small pill bottle candidly sitting beside an empty glass of water. He in denial as he fell back in the desk chair and brought the bottle up to his face and read the label.

There was no room for doubt as he read ‘Timothy J. Wayne and ‘Dr. Leslie Thompkins’ clear as day on the label. The name of the medicine wasn’t something he had seen before but it definitely wasn’t the name of any of the pain medication Bruce allowed them to keep. He didn’t know what to do, but he memorized the name and put everything back to where he had found it before closing the door behind him just in time to feel his phone vibrating in his pocket.

Once again he read Tim’s name, this time across the top of his phone. He wondered if Tim had somehow found out that he had been snooping around his room, but he knew that wasn’t it when he heard the cheeriness in Tim’s voice.

“Hey, Dick. I saw that you called me and I missed it.”

It took Dick a few minutes to catch his voice, but he eventually choked out, “Umm, yeah. I thought I was supposed to steal you away from the party, but it looks like you didn’t need me.”

Tim gave him a light laugh before explaining, “As soon as I smelled Brucie’s cologne I was out. I had had a few friends pick me up and after I was a few miles away I texted B that I’d be away catching a movie.”

He tried to focus on something other than the pills and joked, “You know you could have given me a heads up little brother. I can smell the fancy perfume all the way to your room.”

“I didn’t even know you – What are you doing in my room?” Tim’s voice had lost some of it’s light tone, but under normal circumstances Dick didn’t think he’d notice.

It took a moment but Dick remembered, “I was looking for you.” Trying to change the subject to something less incriminating, Dick asked, “Which movie?”


Dick repeated, “Which movie are you planning on watching?”

Taking a second to talk with his friends, Tim answered, “We’re still in line right now and haven’t decided, but I think we’re leaning closer to horror right now.”

Dick didn’t know what to say next, but he decided he wanted to see Tim as soon as possible. “You know what, call me after the movies over and we can hang out.”

“Dick, you don’t have to-”

“I was planning on spending the day with you already. I want to, Tim.”

“Ok sure.” Tim promised, “I’ll call you after we finish up with the movie.”


“Yeah, Dick?”

Dick wondered if he’d be man enough to actually confess everything to Tim over the phone, but he decided Tim deserved to enjoy the movie without worrying about what Bruce would do if he found out. “Nothing. Just don’t forget alright?”

“No problem.” Turning to his friends as they finally settled on which movie they wanted to see, Tim glanced up at the runtime before telling Dick, “We’re going in right now so I’ll call you in about 2 hours. Bye, Dick.”

“Bye, Tim. Stay safe.”

He was ready to turn off the phone, but Tim had to ask, “Are you sure you’re alright, Dick? You sound a little weird.”

Smiling as Tim was always the one to worry, Dick assured him, “I’m fine. I think I just had some bad shrimp at the party. Call me back alright.”

“Promise. See you later, Dick.”

Before Dick could say anything else, the phone clicked off and Dick was left alone to think everything over. He had a sneaking suspicion that this was what Bruce and Tim had been hiding from him, but he didn’t want to corner Bruce into saying something that would upset Tim or break any promise they might have had.

Instead, he went back to his room and to look into the medicine Tim was taking. It only took a few searches for him to get the picture and a few hours to get himself ready to see Tim again and act as if he didn’t know anything.

Dick never in his life imagined himself being the reason Tim would be so distressed. After he had found out a few years ago, he imagined helping Tim through an episode. He even went as far as to prepare different lines to use when the situation came up. What he never expected was that he would be the cause of the problem, the person Tim hated the most in the world.

In a tone he hoped wasn’t too patronizing, Dick tried to explain, “Tim, you need to understand where I’m coming from.”

“Where exactly is that, Dick? From where I’m standing it doesn’t look like you’re really helping,” Tim shot back. He had a lot more anger than he knew what to do with.

“It might not look like it, but it’s what I’m trying to do.”

Tim threw his arms up and asked, “How is this helping? You basically just said you think I’m crazy.”

Dick was quick to point out, “I never said you’re crazy, Tim. I just think you’re not thinking clearly.”

“And why do you think that?”

Hoping Dick would see the logic in his argument, Dick explained, “Bruce died, Tim. We saw the body and we had a funeral. No one could have survived that.”

“He could have,” Tim countered, “Bruce could have survived something ten times worse.”

Dick slowly forced out, “Are you sure some other things aren’t in play right now?”

“What ‘other things?'” Tim asked taken aback. Dick might have implied he thought Tim was mental, but he never flat out accused him. A part of Tim wanted to see how close Dick would go.

Seeing no nice way of coming clean, Dick simply admitted, “I know, Tim. I know about the depression and the pills and the therapy and I think they might be the reason you think Bruce is still alive.”

Dick had expected Tim to blow up at him, it certainly seemed to be the climax everything was leading to, but instead he stepped back and tried to think of something to say. Once he got himself together, Tim evenly asked, “How did you find out?”

“Remember that night when I got stuck at a charity looking for you and took you out after you caught a movie with your friends. I found your medicine on your desk and looked it up.”

“That was like two years ago! How have you never brought it up before now?” Tim didn’t know what was worse, Dick not telling him as soon as he found out or the fact that he thought it meant he couldn’t think straight enough to do his job.

“I didn’t know how to, okay. It was an invasion of your privacy and I knew you would be upset. I didn’t want to do anything to make you feel worse.”

“Congratulations, Dick. You’re doing a great job,” Tim spat out sarcastically.

“Do you think I wanted this, Tim?” Dick asked. “I’m trying to do the best I can.”

Hearing the sincerity in his voice, the way Dick was trying to grasp at straws to keep from losing him, Tim lost some of the anger he had using to fuel his harsh words. No matter how much he might not want to admit it, Dick was trying. Knowing he needed to be just as sincere, Tim told him, “I just want your support, Dick. I want you to understand that I’m being as reasonable as I’ve ever been.”

Slowly inching forward until he knew Tim wouldn’t fight him, Dick threw his arms around Tim and stressed, “We saw his body, Tim. We had everyone look him over to make sure there was nothing we could do. We were there over his casket as they lowered it into the ground and everyone was there to make sure we were okay.”

“I know that, Dick. I know that, but I also know Bruce could survive that.”

“Don’t you think I want that too? He was our dad, Tim. I want him to be alive more than I’ve wanted anything in my life.”

Finding enough room to look up to Dick, Tim asked, “Then why are you fighting me on this?”

Dick sighed into Tim’s hair before promising, “If you can come up with some proof, Tim, I’ll be right beside you while you look for him.”

“Really?” Tim straightened up and searched Dick’s face to ascertain that he was telling the truth. “If I get you enough proof you’ll come and help?”

Dick hadn’t been expected Tim to react so excitedly, but he wasn’t doing to lose the only progress he had made with Tim. “Yeah if you can convince me I’ll help you any way I can. Until then I need to stay in Gotham. I’d like it if you could stay with me…”

Ignoring the request, Tim stepped out of Dick’s hold and promised, “I’ll prove it to you, Dick. I’ll…I’ll go out and find something that you can’t deny and…and then you’ll have to believe me.”

Dick wanted to take it back, to take everything back and keep Tim in Gotham with him, but he could tell that it wasn’t what Tim needed. He needed to go out and come to terms with the truth himself and all Dick could ask was, “Don’t phase me out, alright? Right now you’re pretty much all I have and I need to know you’re safe. I need to know that something really bad doesn’t happen to you. I can’t lose you too, Tim. I just can’t.”

Finding it in himself to give Dick a small smile, Tim promised, “You’ll never lose me, Dick. And pretty soon we’ll have Bruce back too.”

Not wanting to start another argument, Dick simply returned the smile and offered, “We should head up. Alfred is probably waiting for us.” Looking up, he contemplated something before telling Tim, “I just need a few more minutes and I’ll follow you up.”

Not seeing any other work they could have, Tim asked, “You sure, Dick?”

“Yeah, I just need to check up on a few things. I’ll be up before you know it.”

Tim gave him a small nod before making his way up the stairs. Dick watched him until he closed the bookcase behind him before walking out to the exist that lead to the backyard. Somewhere in his mind he was thinking that he should have brought a coat, but the cold air and damp grass didn’t register as he walked his way to small grave plot on the edge of the Wayne estate. He easily spotted the one plot where the grass hadn’t quite grown in the mud and took the heavy steps over until he was standing in front of the gravestone.

He didn’t do anything other than stare at the name for a few minutes before he found his voice. Dick slowly put a hand on the cold marble tombstone and whispered, “Tim isn’t doing well. None of us are, but he’s doing the worst. He still thinks you’re alive, that you somehow survived, but I know and I think in a weeks he’ll come to terms with the truth.” Dick took a moment to clear his head before saying, “I’m going to take care of him, Bruce. I promise.”


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