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15 August 2012 @ 09:04 pm
What We Leave Behind (Sometimes Finds Us)  
Title: What We Leave Behind (Sometimes Finds Us)
Author: [personal profile] somehowunbroken
Fandom: DCU
Characters: Damian Wayne, Dick Grayson, Jason Todd
Word Count: 1,123
Rating: G
Notes: Written for the Robincest meme's fill-a-thon. The original prompt is here. Basically, Dick is a Talon, Jason was resurrected but never dunked in the Pit, and they both work for Damian.
Summary: “Something is wrong,” Aric says when Damian picks up the phone. “Petros needs you.”

“Something is wrong,” Aric says when Damian picks up the phone. “Petros needs you.”

Damian hangs up his phone and stands. “I beg your pardon,” he says smoothly, ignoring the sputtering men across the table. “I am needed elsewhere.”

He will be punished for leaving the meeting, surely, but Damian was charged with the care of both Petros and Aric before he was old enough or wise enough to care for himself, let alone others. Aric was trained by the Court of Owls, acquired by the League in a trade nearly a decade ago; Petros had been a project of Damian’s mother’s, a boy brought back from the dead in body and spirit, but lacking much of his mind. Both men are more like brothers than servants, more like family than guards. They are his priority, far more than a meeting whose outcome had been decided before the participants gathered.

Aric’s pale face is twisted into a frown when Damian sweeps into his quarters. “He still does not speak.”

“He cannot,” Damian says, as he does every time Aric brings it up. “How long?”

“Your mail was delivered fifteen minutes ago,” Aric replies. “He stood guard while I sorted it, as we do every day, but when I opened the package from your mother-”

Damian freezes. “Mother sent a package?”

“Photos,” Aric says. “Petros grabbed the stack and ran to the corner. I called you when I couldn’t calm him.”

Damian turns to Petros, who is crouched in the corner. He’s rocking back and forth, and there’s a raw keening sound coming from his mouth. Damian can see the photos in his hands, held in gentle fingers. He’s never seen Petros be so careful with anything before.

“Petros,” Damian says, dropping lightly to a crouch in front of his charge. “Calm yourself. What has troubled you?”

Petros moans and trembles, blinking rapidly, and Damian is surprised to see the sheen of tears in his eyes. He looks down at the photos and whimpers, closing his eyes and shaking his head.

Damian lays a hand on his shoulder. “Petros, show me the photos.” He tries to sound both gentle and firm; the last thing he wants is to upset his charge further.

Petros tips his hands towards Damian, displaying the top photograph. It’s a city at night; the photo was taken from a rooftop, looking out across several more. There’s a figure on one of the other rooftops, too far away for the camera to focus on clearly. The figure is no more than a splash of color, green and red and yellow against the black night.

“Petros,” Damian says, tugging on the stack, “let go.”

Petros’ eyes snap open, and the sound he emits is high and sharp. He hasn’t made such a noise in the five years that Damian has known him, and Damian wants nothing more than to figure out the source of his friend’s distress. The grandson of the Demon’s Head should have no such ties, but Damian hold his friends in high regard. Damian tugs on the photos again, and Petros unclenches his fingers and lets them slide out of his grasp.

“Aric,” he says, but Aric is already there, pulling Petros into his arms and murmuring into his ear. A ruthless killer Aric may be, but he has made Petros his family, and Aric takes care of his own.

The photos mean nothing to Damian. Closer shots reveal that the colorful figure is a young man, perhaps a year or two older than Damian. Most of the photos show him in combat situations, and Damian notes the skill in his strikes and the smile on his face. This boy, whoever he might be, would make an excellent assassin with very little additional training.

Petros has calmed somewhat by the time Damian looks up. Aric has his back to the wall, legs out in front of his body, and Petros is sitting sideways across Aric’s legs, cradled close to his chest. His face is tucked into Aric’s neck, and his arms are wrapped firmly around Aric’s chest.

“Aric,” Damian says, holding up a photo of the boy punching an much larger man in the face. “Does this mean anything to you?”

Aric goes still. He stares at the photo for a long moment before nodding once. “He is called Robin.”

“Robin,” Damian says thoughtfully. “You know him?”

“He is Robin as I am Talon,” Aric says. “A name for a name. A legacy that he did not create, but now bears.”


Aric’s face gives nothing away, but his tone says plenty. “Gotham.”

Petros wails, burying his face further into Aric’s neck, and Aric’s arms tighten around him.

Damian narrows his eyes at the photo. “Robin of Gotham,” he says. “And you knew this Robin when you were there?”

Aric shakes his head. “Not that Robin, no. I fought against one, but this boy is too small, too young. The Robin I knew would be of an age with Petros.”

Petros whines, turning to face Damian. He holds his hand out, reaching for the photo, and when Damian hands it over, he holds it to his chest, just above his heart. There are tears flowing down his face as he stares at Damian.

“Gotham,” Damian says, and Petros presses the photo harder against his chest. “Robin.”

“He knows the words,” Aric says as Petros whines again. There’s a note of excitement in Aric’s voice, but nothing more. The things they’ve learned about Petros since he came to be with Damian are few and far between: he prefers simple food; he seems to enjoy dancing jerkily to loud music; he fights with an inborn sort of grace that had been honed by a master at some point. Now they’ve gained another fragment of who Petros is: he knows of Robin, and he knows Gotham.

Damian looks directly at Petros. “Do you want to go to this boy?”

Petros holds the photo firmly to his chest and rocks forward onto his knees. He reaches out with trembling fingers and traces the photo on top of the stack. In it, the boy is holding a thin cable, his smile wide as he flies from one rooftop to the next. Petros’ fingers ghost over the boy’s features before settling over the R on his chest.

Damian sucks in a sharp breath as he glances up. Petros is holding the photo in the exact same spot on his chest as the boy’s R is located.

“Aric,” he says, and Aric draws Petros back, pulling him into an embrace again.

“What are your orders?” Aric asks, looking at Damian. Petros looks up instantly, focusing on Damian’s face.

“Pack,” Damian says shortly. “We’re going to Gotham.”

Additional notes: Yes, I changed their names. Aric is Dick; Petros is Jason. I figured that part of the Talon-izing process would be to strip you of your old identity while still keeping you different from your Talon-peers, so Richard Grayson became Aric (which is, more or less, the Greek version of Richard). Petros is the Greek version of Peter, which is Jason's middle name; I changed that because the prompt called for Jason's history to stay hidden from Damian, so I assumed that Talia would have, at the very least, not kept his name. She's got a soft spot for Jason, though, so she keeps his name close to something that it once was. The Robin that they're going after is, of course, Tim.

This was originally posted here, where it has comment count unavailable comments. Comment here or there.
ariadne83: richard is the cutestariadne83 on August 23rd, 2012 04:36 pm (UTC)
I love this so very much :D
Kisomehowunbroken on August 23rd, 2012 08:43 pm (UTC)
Thanks :D (And now I have that snippet running through my head - the one where Tim helps them take over the League... sigh. I need to work on my big bang, not this. /firm)
kuonji14kuonji14 on September 2nd, 2012 08:18 am (UTC)
Kisomehowunbroken on September 2nd, 2012 08:23 am (UTC)