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Fic: A Displaced Red Robin Chapter 2

Title: A Displaced Red Robin
Author: Brokaw22
Disclaimer: The norms
Rating: T
Story Synopsis: Tim gets transported to the cartoon Young Justice world, and he's not sure he knows how to deal with it.
Thanks to Kathy for beta work.

Chapter One

 

He's been here a week, and he's starting to go stir crazy. He hasn't been allowed to leave the HQ, but that's typical procedure, so Tim isn't all that annoyed about that aspect of his imprisonment--and he can't really call it anything else. There is someone watching him at all times, and it's really starting to get annoying. Right now he's being watched by Superboy, who is better than the others, because Superboy doesn't seem to be very talkative, nor does he seem to want to ask Tim questions. But Tim still needs his alone time, and he's gone a week with virtually none.

 

He gets to spend his time training, reading, or generally being bored out of his mind, and through it all, there's always someone there keeping an eye on him. M'gann at least tries to be friendly with him, but it's clear that she's just as socially awkward as he is. Kaldur spends most of his time watching Tim, wanting to ask him questions, but keeping them to himself for one reason or another. Wally--and it didn't take Tim long to figure out which Flash he was, even if M'gann did let the others names slip--spends his time glaring at Tim and generally being annoying in the way that most speedsters are when they're bored. It'd be fun to mock him for certain things if it didn't remind Tim so much of Bart. And that just makes him miss his own world.

 

He hasn't seen Batman once since his initial conversation with him (if that could be called a conversation) and all requests to speak to the man have yielded no results. Tim guesses he should just be happy that someone was considerate enough to bring him civvies to wear, because even he would have a problem wearing the same suit for an entire week. Robin was also kind enough to lend him a mask and a pair of highly reflective sunglasses to conceal his identity. It's a gesture of friendship, really, and it's so strange for Dick of all people to be that subtle when Tim's so used to blinding smiles and full-body hugs. This Dick Grayson just isn't as open or as physical contact driven as Tim's Dick is, and it all just seems so very wrong.

 

This Robin is still in need of physical contact. It's just that this Dick seems to get that physical contact in far more subtle and stealthy ways than Tim's Dick ever did. He uses training exercises, spars, and fights to get the contact that he so desperately needs, and if Tim was a different person, perhaps a better person, he'd find ways to convince this team to be more open with each other, so that Dick didn't have to pretend that every hit he took was just a lucky shot. It's disconcerting in ways that Tim never really fully considered, and the fact that Bruce hasn't noticed--or more importantly done something about it--is even more worrisome.

 

It doesn't really matter, though, because there's nothing that he can do about it, and worrying about all of that stuff certainly isn't going to get him home any sooner. He needs to talk to this Bruce, and find out how long it's going to take, or if it's even possible to send him back. Tim doesn't like to think about what will happen if they can't get him home. On the one hand, it's not like he's really needed back home. After all, there are plenty of people willing and able to protect Gotham, and he's pretty sure that, if he was forced to stay here indefinitely, he'd be able to leave the damn headquarters once in awhile. On the other hand, it still fills him with an overwhelming sadness at the possibility of never seeing the people he knows and loves again. Tim shudders at the thought, and he's not sure if it's because of his own fear or due to his memory of what this Dick does to the English language on a regular basis. Still he knows it could be worse. He could be stuck listening to 'holy' jokes all of the time, so Tim figures he should just be grateful for that, at least.

 

When he gets off the couch to get a glass of water, Superboy follows him with his eyes until he returns to his seat. They've worked out a system, so that Superboy--and sometimes it's so hard not to refer to him as Kon or Conner--doesn't have to get up every time Tim simply moves. When Tim's going to leave the room he gives Superboy a hand signal, and the two of them walk in companionable silence to Tim's next destination. Tim's also just happy that he gets to sleep without someone watching...well, other than the security cameras, but he's used that.

 

Tim's gotten tired of pretending to watch television, and he's pretty sure that Superboy isn't really watching it either, so he gives the hand gesture, and heads for the library. Superboy seems to enjoy the library just as much as Tim does. He doesn't always read while they're there, but he seems to enjoy the quiet solitude, and just generally being away from the others as much as Tim does. Sometimes, if Tim's found something to read that he knows his Conner would have enjoyed, he gives it to Superboy, and tells him that it just seems like something he might like. So far, Tim's found a few things that Superboy didn't seem completely bored with while reading, which he thinks is something--but he doesn't know for sure. It's not like they really talk, and Tim's not even sure if it's possible to actually talk with anyone here. The only person he would feel comfortable enough with telling anything won't see him for whatever reason. Tim doesn't know why Batman's ignoring him, but he can tell that the man is, and there's really no way on any earth to get a Batman to stop ignoring you short of calling in Alfred, and Tim's pretty sure that that would just be impossible, messy, and probably an all-around bad idea.

 

The two of them settle down on opposite sides of the room. Tim has subtly been looking for higher level physics books while he's been doing some leisure reading, but so far he hasn't found anything that even looks slightly helpful to getting him home. Superboy mostly just watches him read, when he isn't reading himself. Today seems to be a reading day, however, since Superboy has picked up an Encyclopedia of Science. Tim raises his eyebrow, but doesn't say anything. That seems to be something Tim would more interested in than Superboy, but the boy settles down on the floor with his legs folded underneath him and starts reading, so Tim figures he's probably just trying to learn more about the world around him. Tim picks his book up again, and resumes reading. They aren't there long, before they're both called to back the main room by Red Tornado.

 

Tim's hoping for some type of news about his current situation, so when he walks into the room to find Black Canary there staring at them with an extremely commanding expression, it's a bit of an understatement to say that he's surprised. She nods to Superboy, and gives him the tiniest of smiles as a greeting, before turning back to him. “Batman wants me to spar with you today.” It's obvious from the way that she's looking at him that she thinks that this is a bad idea, and really didn't readily agree to this. Tim has to wonder how Bruce managed to convince her...or maybe he just ordered her to do as she was told. Tim doesn't know, but he really wants to find out.

 

He doesn't say anything to her. He hasn't had that many dealings with the Black Canary back on his world, all things considered, nor has he really sparred with her all that much, either, so he can't even begin to postulate why this Batman defers to her for the team's training. Tim nods to her and moves into a ready position. He's in a pair of sweats and a t-shirt. He has on one of Robin's masks, and his belt is hidden under the waistband of the sweats. He hasn't been comfortable enough to walk around this place without it--or his boots, for that matter--so at least Tim knows he won't get too damaged if this spar somehow turns into a real fight. So many of his spars so often do, but that's with the people back on his own world, and, more often than not, those people are some definition of family, so he's reasonably sure that it won't be an issue.

 

They start off the spar by testing each other. It's clear from her posture that she expects him to make rookie mistakes...mistakes that children make--mistakes that these children often make, and it's tempting to just go with that--to pretend to be less knowledgeable than he really is, but he can't. He knows that this is just as much of a test from her as it is from Batman--possibly even more so, since it was his idea in the first place--and it doesn't matter which earth he's on, which Batman is testing him, or anything else. If he's facing a test from any Batman, he has to give his all, because anything less would be unacceptable. He doesn't expect her to fight like the Black Canary from his world. After everything that he's seen to prove that none of these people are really all that much alike to their counterparts on his world, it would just be silly to expect her to fight the same way. So, instead of treating her like Black Canary, he treats her as though she's a completely new opponent, because she basically is.

 

He dodges a strike that he's seen his own Batman use countless times, which is intriguing to say the least, and then he gets into a defensive position. He's letting her control the spar--for now. After all, it's far too tempting to find out what else she's learned from Batman. She feigns a punch to his face, and goes for a sweep, which reminds him a little too much of Dick right now. Tim back flips away from the sweep, and then rolls out of the way of her elbow. “You're letting me dictate the fight.”

 

Before she can finish her lecture he spins and kicks out. “That's what you think.” He already knows that she's going to slide out of the way of it and go for a grab just by the way that she's standing, and suddenly Tim is missing Cassandra a whole hell of a lot right now. He lets Canary grab him, and when she tosses him, Tim uses the momentum to turn in midair, and throws three batarangs. He lands perfectly, pulls a smoke pellet out, and throws it so that it lands just in front of her feet. The entire training area fills with smoke, and Tim smirks to himself. “Still think that you're the one dictating this fight?” He waits for her to attack the place he was when he spoke, and then moves.

 

He tosses another batarang to distract her, too high and to the left, and then he goes for a sweep. It's not surprising when she hits the ground hard, and then Tim's on top of her, and has her pinned perfectly. He's about to call the spar over when he's suddenly yanked off of her, and thrown against a wall. Superboy has his arm across Tim's neck again pressing down hard, and all Tim can think is that someone needs to talk to this boy about controlling his strength, because there's no air getting in or out of Tim's lungs right now, and if he wasn't trained by a Batman he'd be blacking out right about now.

 

“It's okay. Let him go. It was just a spar, and he was just doing what he was taught to do.” Black Canary has her hand on Superboy's shoulder, clearly trying to tug his arm away.

 

Superboy glances back at her before glaring back at Tim. “He used tricks.”

 

Black Canary nods at him very patiently, and Tim kind of wants to hate her right now, because he still can't breathe. “Yes, he did, but to be honest, I was treating him like an untrained child, and that wasn't fair of me. He was simply teaching me a lesson.”

 

Superboy lets him go, but looks like he still really wants to hit Tim or possibly just choke him to death. “But, you're the mentor, so he shouldn't be trying to teach you anything.”

 

She shakes her head at him, and smiles fondly. “Sometimes children are the best teachers of all.”

 

Superboy stares at her obviously confused by her statement. “If you say so.”

 

She moves past Superboy, and helps Tim to his feet. “You did well, and I apologize for not treating you as a worthy opponent.”

 

Tim holds up a hand to signal that he needs a moment before responding, and then coughs a few times. “It's okay. I've spent most of my crime-fighting career being underestimated. It's how most of us survive.”

 

Black Canary stares at him for a moment as though she's not sure how to take that. “You refer to it as a career...interesting.”

 

Tim smirks at her for a moment. He's well aware that anyone who's been doing this for any significant amount of time does, and he's pretty sure that that mindset transcends universes. “Don't we all?”

 

She nods at him for a moment, before turning back to Superboy. “Why don't you work with Red Robin, here, while I go check on a few things? I'll be right back.” Before she leaves the room she glances back at Tim. “And don't be afraid to show him some more of the stuff that you just showed me. I've been working with him on a few things, but I think you two could really learn a lot from each other.”

 

Tim doesn't get a chance to ask what she thinks he needs help with. He always loves improving himself, and if he can learn something from this world...well, then at least his time here won't be a complete and total waste. He turns back to Superboy, who doesn't seem pleased with the turn of events at all. Tim sighs, and fully expects this spar to turn into an all out fight. “Has Black Canary ever worked with you with staffs before?”

 

Superboy nods at him, but doesn't lighten up any. “Yeah, a few times.”

 

Tim's not surprised. Most people like to have something between them and a super strong meta while fighting, even if it is just during a spar. “Do you mind if I use one with you now? I'm a little over hand-to-hand combat for right now.”

 

Superboy nods again, and moves into a ready position. “Yeah, it's fine. Let's just get this over with, and I'd prefer if you didn't use any of your little tricks with me.”

 

Tim raises an eyebrow at him as he pulls out his staff. “I assume you mean the smoke pellets, right?”

 

Superboy nods once again. “Yeah.”

 

Tim inclines his head slightly. “Okay, I won't, but if you can pull your strength for me that'd be great.”

 

Superboy seems to consider that for a long moment before giving him one final nod. “I can do that...I think.”

 

Tim gestures for him to start the spar. “We can work on it, if you want.”

 

Superboy moves in quickly, and Tim blocks the first kick with his staff, ducks under the punch, and jumps out of range of the sweep that he obviously learned from Black Canary. “You can do that?”

 

“Do what?” Tim questions as he moves out of the way of an elbow that probably would have left him seriously injured.

 

“Help me control my strength and stuff.”

 

Tim nods as he spins away from another vicious kick. “Yeah, I...I helped my Superboy learn to control his powers when we were younger. He had a lot of trouble with it at first, but he's completely in control of himself now.”

 

Superboy stares at him, disbelieving, as he absorbs a hit from Tim's staff. “And you trust him not to lose that control?”

 

Tim could hear the obvious emotion in Superboy's tone. Clearly, this was something that this boy worried about a lot. “Yes, I trust him completely. He's my best friend, and there's no one I trust more...a few I trust equally, but no one more so.”

 

Superboy seems to consider that for a long moment as he blocks hits from Tim's staff with his forearms. “So, does that mean you can help me with my landings, too? I have a problem touching down...softly.”

 

Tim chuckles to himself at the memory of the first time that Kon almost went through every floor in the tower. “Yeah, I can help with that, too.”

 

“Great.” Superboy smiles at him for the first time since he's arrived on this earth, and Tim can't help but smile back.

 

The End (for now)

 

Comments

qem_chibati
Apr. 22nd, 2011 09:47 am (UTC)
Awww. Tim's interactions with Superboy are so sweet.
brokaw22
Apr. 22nd, 2011 03:30 pm (UTC)
Thank you. I'm glad that you liked the Tim and Superboy moments.