Wonderbat Week: Day 4 – Holiday
Title: What The Kids Want
Word Count: 2,102
Author’s Note: So so sorry this is late! I just kind of went overboard for with this and I didn’t feel like writing yesterday. Not desire to write and a large word count does not go well together so I just finished this (now I got to go write today’s prompt plus yesterday and today’s prompts for Dickkory Week. Yay 🙁 ). Anyway, in my first entry I added in a mention Donna and Cassie because I didn’t want to erase them. However I have no knowledge of them so they are absent in this fic. Also my first time writing Jason sooo… Idk, it’s really important to me that Bruce’s kids have a role in Wonderbat’s relationship.
Gotham was not a pretty city. The gothic buildings gave off a dark aura and the rank trash on its grimy streets gave the stale air a permanent smell. And yet, despite the sky high crime rates and bitter atmosphere, the city almost looked inviting under the mask of freshly fallen snow — especially when one was standing outside of their ancestral manor, sharing a cup of tea with a close friend as one’s kids played and got along.
Bruce Wayne took a deep breath, taking in the crisp winter air. A hot cup of tea warmed his palms but it almost didn’t compare to the comforting heat radiating from the woman next to him. In front of him was his boys. What had started as gentle teasing from Dick had turned into a full blown snow war featuring Dick and Tim vs Jason and Damian. Yeah, the pairings were odd but Bruce couldn’t care less: his kids were having fun together and that was all that mattered.
“This doesn’t happen often, does it?” Diana asked as she sipped her tea, drawing bruce’s attention away from his boys. A harsh wind blew and Bruce squeezed his mug harder. It had almost killed Alfred to put their drinks in big mugs instead of proper tea cups but it was far too cold to drink tea in little spurts.
“Them getting along? Usually Tim and Damian are going at it and Dick is either trying to break it up or caught in the middle. And I hardly see Jason anymore.”
“Yeah…” A dark feeling stirred in Bruce’s chest, nearly stamping out the joy the sight before him brought. “It’s rare to see these moments. It’s hard to get the kids to get along and a fight to get Jason to willing drop by. But these moments makes it more than worth it.”
“I bet they do. Watching them is like watching my sisters in Themyscira. No matter how hard we fight each other, we know the other would have our back in battle. Same with your boys, right?”
“Same with my boys. They love each other, even if only Dick will admit it.” Bruce looked back towards his boys and frowned. “And they’re plotting something.”
Dick, Damian, Tim, and Jason stood huddled in the middle of the yard, snowball fight forgotten. Occasionally a pair of blue eyes would dart towards Bruce and Diana before returning to the whispered conversation between them. Bruce narrowed his eyes and strained his ears but he couldn’t hear anything.
“What’s going on over there?” he eventually called after accepting that eavesdropping was impossible from this distance. The boys jumped apart with shining eyes and sneaky smiles, an almost believable picture of innocence.
“Nothing!” Dick replied as he strolled towards the pair on the porch. His brothers followed. “We was just going over a case that’s been nagging me. Perhaps you can help?” Bruce raised an eyebrow at his youngest.
“I thought you said no work on Christmas?” Pink highlighted Dick’s cheeks and he briefly bit his lip. Bruce nearly shook his head: he had spent weeks teaching Dick to control such reactions.
“I know, I know: I’m a hypocrite. But I just can’t focus on having fun with you guys with this case on my mind. Can you please help me?” It wasn’t common for Dick to beg for help. Ever since Robin became Nightwing the young man had been adamant about independence, so it was a big red flag that was was begging for help now. But with Diana right there, Bruce found himself not wanting to make a scene.
“Sure, Dick,” the man said, voice flooded with suspicion and resignation.
“Great! I’m gonna grab some hot chocolate and we’ll meet in your study.” With that Dick raced into the manor, a large grin stretched across his face.
“I can also use a refill,” Diana hummed, shaking her empty mug. “Meet you there?”
“No!” Tim shouted. The two adults looked at him, causing the teen to flush a dark red. “Actually, I – um – was hoping to ask Diana a few questions, if you don’t mind.”
“Later, Tim,” Bruce said with a tone that allowed no arguments.
“Yeah! Diana can’t answer your fangirl questions: she’ll be too busy sparing with me and Damian in the Batcave. Right Diana?” Jason asked with hopeful eyes.
“I’ve always wanted to conquer the Amazon in a sword fight,” Damian added with a shrug of the shoulders. Jason scoffed.
“In your dream, short stack. She’ll wipe the floor with you!”
Bruce pinched the bridge of his nose as Jason and Damian began to squabble and exhaled through his nose. Then he looked at the woman next to him. “Diana, I’m sorry to ask but—”
“It’s no problem. But I must warn you: Damian might be a little grumpy after I defeat him in battle.” Something in Bruce’s chest burned as Diana flashed him a smile before the Amazon was dragged off by his 2nd oldest and youngest sons. It wasn’t a bad burn; more like the burn of a cup of tea or a fireplace on the coldest day of the year. It almost brought a smile to his face but he quickly stomped that down when he saw Tim still standing there.
“Er, I’m just gonna… go inside…” Tim muttered awkwardly before sidestepping Bruce and disappearing inside. Bruce sighed and followed his second youngest.
By the time Bruce made it to his study, Dick was comfortable seated on his desk with a mug of hot chocolate in hands and stacks of papers spread onto the desk’s remaining surface. Dick gestured him over eagerly. Bruce was barely sat down before Dick started to explain the case to him.
5 minutes later and it was clear to Bruce that this was a waste of time. The case was an easy one with plenty of evidence as to who the perp was and why they did it. There was no way Dick hadn’t figured it out already. But Dick was determined to drag Bruce into it and no matter how many times the older man interrupted and tried to figure out Dick’s real motives, the younger just kept soldiering on and ignoring him. By the time 30 minutes had passed Bruce was completely tuning his son out, more interested in the way Dick’s eyes kept flickering to the watch on his wrist.
“Now, I was thinking —” Dick started around the 45 minute mark but he was cut off as his watch began to beep. Dick let out a breath and quickly jumped off the desk, breathing out a quiet “finally” that Bruce barely managed to catch. Dick began to collect the papers.
“Did you figure it out?” Bruce asked as he watched Dick clean up quickly. He was leaning in his seat, arms crossed and eyebrows raised.
“Hm? Oh! No, I didn’t but it’s Christmas and I refuse to work on this any longer! C’mon, let’s go find the others.” Bruce barely had time to process Dick’s excuse before his son grabbed him by the arm and pulled him out the room.
“Woah – slow down!” Bruce hissed but Dick ignored him, instead pulling him through the hallways even faster as he muttered a chant of “c’mon, c’mon, c’mon,” below his breath. “Dick, where are we going?”
“To find the others – ah ha!” Dick stopped in his tracks before quickly stepping around Bruce so he was behind the man and pushing him forward. “Stay there!”
“Just stand there!”
Bruce rolled his eyes and exhaled harshly. He had learned not to play his kids’ games a long time ago so why was he indulging Dick now? Before Bruce could move, though, the sound of a mini stampede rumbled through the hallway. The rest of his kids were coming.
Bruce stood there and looked ahead, watching as Jason and Tim pulled Diana towards him and Dick, Damian right on their heels. He barely had time to take in the sight – let alone chastise them for their behaviour – before his two middle children sling-shotted Diana forward, right into Bruce’s arms.
“Diana!” Bruce gasped in shock as the woman collided with him. “Are you okay? I’m so sorry—”
“I’m fine. The boys were in quite a hurry to bring me up here. Is everything alright?”
“As far as I know but my sons are acting suspicious and that’s never a good thing.” Bruce shot a glare at all four of his sons. They only smiled in return, Damian’s smile a bit more hesitant and begrudging than the rest. Bruce opened his mouth to demand answers but was quickly cut off as Diana shuffled in his arms. A hot flush flooded Bruce’s face and he quickly let the Amazon go. He let go so quickly that he nearly toppled her balance again.
“S-sorry,” Bruce stuttered, awkwardly rubbing the back of his neck. The heat in his face increased: Batman did not stutter!
“It’s okay,” Diana replied, a faint pink blush decorating her own cheeks. A few awkward beats passed before Jason broke it with a deep groan.
“This is taking too long! Look up already!” Dick and Tim emphasized his words by pointing up towards the ceiling.
As one, Diana and Bruce tilted their heads upwards and looked at the ceiling 25 feet above them.
Oh God, thought Bruce as dread and embarrassment filled him. How did they get mistletoe all the way up there?
Bruce’s heart began to pound and his hands clenched into fists at his sides. The dream/embarrassment mixture only intensified as he heard a small “oh,” slip from Diana’s mouth. Bruce kept his eyes up as he began to stutter, too embarrassed to look at his friend.
“Di-Diana, I’m s-so sorry! I don’t – why would they – oh my gosh!” Bruce’s head fell forward into his palms, his fingers pulling at his hair. He should’ve know his kids would pull something like this: they’ve been trying to push him and Diana together for months now! And inviting Diana over during mistletoe season? Bruce mind as well gotten onto his knees and begged for his kids to do this.
Suddenly, Diana began to laugh.
“S-sorry,” the Amazon snorted between giggles. “Your face right now is just -” Diana cut herself off as she doubled over in laughter. Around them the boys began to laugh too. Was Diana in on it? Did they all team up against him?
How come that idea didn’t upset him as much as it should’ve?
Finally Diana straightened with a sniff as her laughter died out. She licked her lips and, with big blue eyes glinting, the Amazon stepped closer to Bruce and threw her arms around his neck.
“D?” Bruce muttered, questioningly. His own arms moved of their own volition and wrapped around Diana’s waist.
“Your boys put so much effort in this. Mind as well give them what they want.”
“Yes! Kiss her!” Dick yelled from the sidelines, practically buzzing. The others quickly shushed him.
Bruce couldn’t help but noticed the way Damian stood close to Dick, slightly behind his older brother as if the shield himself from the scene before him. The last time he had checked, Damian still held hopes of Talia and him reconciling and the three of them becoming a proper family. But here was help, scheming to get him and Diana to kiss? Was the boy truly okay with this?
As if reading his mind, Damian made eye contact with his father and nodded his consent, latching onto Dick’s sweater as he did so. The young man quickly threw an arm around his little brother and pulled him close.
“Are you okay with this?” Diana whispered. “I’ll understand if your not.” Bruce closed his eyes and thought. Diana was willing to kiss him. His sons wanted them to kiss. And him — Bruce thought harder — he wasn’t against the idea at all.
“Yeah,” he answered. “I’m more than okay with this.”
Diana’s blinding smile was the last thing he saw before he closed his eyes and their lips met. Inside his chest something burst and something else clicked. Bruce found himself deepening the kiss, a low groan coming from deep in his throat. He could feel Diana’s smile against his lips, the heat of her body pressed against his, her fingers in his hair. It felt good. It felt right.
The world around them melted away as Bruce and Diana kissed. And then they kissed again. And again. Lost in the woman in his arms, Bruce almost didn’t hear the cheer and applause coming from his sons.