This is my first piece in honor or Batman Month. As you all know, DC not I, own them (DARN IT!!!) Hope you enjoy. The Superman costume part is lovingly inspired by Syl's now famous superman PJ's. Charlene
“Wayne residence.” Alfred’s clipped British tone stated.
“May I speak with Mr. Bruce Wayne?” a young female voice came over the line.
“May I say whom is calling?”
“I'm calling from Rabe Memorial Hospital in Bludhaven.”
Alfred felt his heart sink into his stomach like lead in water. Master Dick. Why else would the hospital in Bludhaven be calling. He closed his eyes in silent prayer, then said “One moment please.”
The walk from the phone into the study seemed endless. When finally he opened the door, he spied the man who was, for all intents and purposes, his son. This man who had suffered such great loss in his life. Please God, don’t let him suffer another one, he thought. His voice started to come, then stopped. He had to compose himself.
“Master Bruce. You have a call Sir, from Rabe Memorial Hospital in Bludhaven.”
Bruce looked up from his desk. His steel blue eyes looked into Alfred’s worried gray ones. He quickly grabbed the phone.
“This is Bruce Wayne. ... Yes, he’s my son... I, yes, I understand. ...” he said as his mind, that great analytical mind, seemed to cloud over with panicked confusion. His eyes sought out Alfred’s again. Alfred’s eyes had brought him comfort when nothing else could. “His grandfather and I will be right there.” and he hung up the phone.
“Master Dick?” Alfred asked anxiously.
“He’s been in an accident. He was riding his motorcycle on the 61 Bypass.” Bruce began as he and Alfred headed toward the garage. “A driver of a car in the opposite lane went to sleep, they think. He crossed over and hit Dick. They say there was no way for Dick to have avoided the collision. The force of the collision sent Dick into two other cars traveling in his lane. The driver of the first car died at the scene. Dick’s in ICU.” Bruce stopped, his breath caught in his throat as he looked to Alfred for support. As he continued, his voice cracked ever so slightly, but distinctly audible to the man who had raised him, “They don’t know if he’s going to make it Alfred.”
As Alfred drove from the Manor south toward Gotham and then Bludhaven, Bruce picked up the car phone and called Barbara Gordon.
“Hello.” she answered.
“Barbara,” began the deep commanding voice she knew so well. “ Meet me out front of your building. Now.”
“What’s this...” she wrinkled her nose as she looked at the phone which had suddenly went dead. “He’s the most talkative man I’ve ever known.” Barbara grumbled as she grabbed her keys and headed out of her apartment.
Barbara hadn’t been outside the building five minutes when Bruce’s BMW pulled up to the curb. Bruce quickly got out reaching Barbara in two long strides.
Without a word he scooped her from her chair and deposited her into the car’s back seat. He quickly grabbed her chair, placing it into the trunk. When he returned to the car, Alfred sped away towards Bludhaven.
“Bruce?” she started as she felt a growing panic rise in her chest. Something was wrong.
“Dick was in a motorcycle accident. We’re going to the hospital.” Bruce replied.
“Oh my God!” she cried as tears came unbidden to her eyes. “He was coming to see me, ... and this is why he’s late. I was thinking...” Barbara’s hand clutched at her chest. She felt as if her heart had been ripped still beating from her chest. She didn’t ask how badly he was hurt, she knew. She could read it in Bruce and Alfred's faces. Worse, she felt it in her soul.
When they arrived at the hospital, Bruce leaped from the car racing into the emergency room, leaving Alfred to help Barbara from the BMW. Alfred and Barbara quickly followed. Bruce reached the nurses station stating “I’m Bruce Wayne. My son Richard Grayson was brought in earlier. A motorcycle accident.”
“Yes Mr. Wayne, he’s in ICU room 12 down the hall and to the right.” The nurse yelled the last part to the man's back as he raced to his son.
As he turned the corner, he saw a doctor in green surgical garb leaving the room. Bruce ran up and grabbed the doctor by the arm.
“Doctor, that’s my son’s room, how is he?”
“Lucky to be alive. Your son’s holding on by a thread through. He’s had massive internal hemorrhaging, extensive damage that we’ve tried to repair in surgery. I think that we managed to repair everything. He’s also in a coma, he suffered head trauma. If he hadn’t been wearing a helmet, he’d be dead right now. However, the longer he's unconscious, the less likely it is that he'll ever wake up.”
“Doctor, whatever you need, whoever you need, from anywhere in the world, let me know. You’ll have it.”
“Right now, just pray.”
Bruce’s eyes turned from the doctor to Alfred and Barbara who had joined them in the hall.
“Can we go in?” Barbara asked, “Can we see him?”
“Only family, one at a time. And only for a few minutes each.”
“We’re all his family.” Bruce said as he headed into the room. The image before him broke through all his defenses. As he saw Dick's body, heavily bandaged and hooked to numerous tubes and monitors, his mind drifted back to the smiling nine year old boy who had so thoroughly won his heart.
Bruce pulled a chair close to the bed. Dick was so still. Too still. Dick was a squirmy sleeper, he always had been. He was too still. Yet, Bruce smiled slightly when he saw that errant strand of hair. It had escaped his bandages, falling carelessly over Dick’s brow.
"You never could keep that in place." he said quietly.
He took his son’s hand in his, careful of the needles laced into the boy.
“Dick, can you hear me. It’s Bruce. The doctor said you were going to be fine. Alfred and Barbara are here. They’ll be in to see you shortly. The doctor won’t let us stay very long. You’ve given us all a scare with this, you know.” he squeezed Dick’s hand as he spoke.
Bruce’s mind raced back through the years. Flashes of memories: Dick at nine sliding down the bannisters with Alfred racing down the stairs after him “Master Dick, a proper gentlemen uses the stairs.”. His first Halloween at Wayne Manor, Alfred had insisted that Bruce take Dick shopping for his costume. Dick had immediately ran to the Superman costumes, Bruce had tried to steer him to the Batman costumes, but Dick would have none of it. He remembered how Alfred could hardly contain his amusement when they returned and 'Superboy' showed off his stuff.
“Dick, I’ll call Clark, he’ll come and see you. You just have to wake up, okay son. I need you to wake up. I know you’re tired, I know you’re hurt, but I need you to wake up.”
The door opened and a nurse walked in to check the monitors.
Alfred took his cell phone from his pocket and dialed the number. He listened as the phone rang, anxious for the voice to answer on the other end.
“Hey Al, what’s up.”
“It’s Master Dick, young sir. He’s been in an accident.”
“Is he okay?”
“He’s in intensive care at Rabe Memorial.”
“I’ll be there as soon as I can.” Tim said as he hung up his phone. Grabbing his bag, he ran from his room to the door. He didn't care how much trouble he got into for taking the car, he'd deal with that later.
“Alfred,” asked Barbara, “Can I use the phone?”
“Yes, Miss Barbara.” he said tenderly, handing the cell phone to her.
“Thanks. I thought I’d call some of his other friends.” she slightly smiled at Alfred as she started dialing the number.
“Harper here, are you beautiful?”
“Roy Harper?” Barbara said knowing from Dick’s descriptions of his friend that it was.
“You got it.”
“I’m Barbara Gordon, a friend of Dick’s. I know you and he are good friends. I knew you’d want to know... “
”Know what? Where’s Dick?” Roy said with worry in his voice.
“Dick’s in the hospital. Rabe Memorial in Bludhaven. Will you tell the other Titans?”
“Yes, I know it... all.” she replied, a clue to her other identity.
“Oracle! " he said with sudden realization. "Who did it? Who hurt him? Was it Blockbuster? Tell me ‘cause we’re gonna take ‘em down.”
“You don’t understand. It wasn’t like that. It was an accident, a regular accident. I guess we’ve forgotten with all that we deal with that we’re still just human. It was a motorcycle accident. It could have happened to anyone."
”How is he?” Roy asked, his flash of temper subsiding.
“Not good.” she replied with a crack in her voice.
Bruce knew he should leave the room. The doctor said only a few minutes. He knew he should let Alfred and Barbara have their chance, yet he couldn’t force himself to leave Dick’ side. ‘This is my son.’ his selfish side kept saying. He was the one who had the right to be here. He had to be here. How long had he been here, he didn’t know. Time had no meaning.
‘He’s got to wake up, Dick’s got to wake up.’ he thought.
“Dick, son, can you hear me. Wake up, you have to wake up, son. The longer you’re unconscious, the harder it will be for you to wake up. Dick, Dickie, ...”
‘What? What else can I do?' Bruce thought, then he thought of something. He looked to the door, ensuring they were alone.
“Nightwing. Wake up. You must wake up.” He said in his best Batman voice.
His mind went unbidden to those many times that he and Dick had flown through the Gotham night skies. Batman and Robin. The Dynamic Duo. They had been through so much. Dick had endured so much, yet they always pulled through.
“I fired you from being Robin because I thought it was too dangerous. I thought I would lose you. How stupid I was. Didn’t I realize that life itself could take you away. Look at you. You weren’t fighting the Joker or any of these maniacs I trained you for. You were just riding your bike going to see your girl. Dick I love you. I can’t lose you. Please don’t leave me.” he said as a tear escaped his eye. “I’m sorry I hurt you when I took Robin away from you. That was your name. That was you. I shouldn’t have...”
He stopped. He looked at Dick in the face. He was still so still. Would it work. Could that reach him. Bruce had to try.
“Robin. Robin! Do you hear me Robin. Wake up. Let me know you hear me Robin.”
He stopped. He looked at Dick in the face. He was still so still. Then Bruce felt it, ever so slightly one finger tried to squeeze his hand.
“Bat... man.” Dick tried to whisper out, his blue eyes fighting to open.
‘Bruce, what, wher...”
“Shh, I’m sorry I woke you up, but I had to. You’ve been hurt, in an accident. But you’re going to be all right. I know it.”
“Thought I... heard you... call me... Robin?”
“Well, that’s your name isn’t it?”
“Yeah.” Dick said a smile forming on his face. "It is."
“I love you son.” Bruce said as the tears now came freely from his eyes. His hand stroking the errant strand of hair.
“I love you too, Dad.” Dick replied as he tried again to squeeze Bruce’s hand “Barbara?”
“She’s here. She’s upset with you for being late.”
“Better call a doctor.” Dick smiled, "I'm gonna need one."
Bruce smiled back. With this sense of humor, Bruce knew Dick would be all right.
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