[personal profile] runespoor
Title: Delusions
Fandom: DC
Rating: PG
Summary: Bruce and Tim never saw the same thing in the Case.
Notes: Terrific Table of Robins, Tim to Jason. Title from the Black & White story in Gotham Knights #34, the Delusions of Alfred Pennyworth.

For a long while, when Batman was training him as Robin, Tim considered Jason his best friend.

The Case was an object of dread and stomach-clenching guilt, an unavoidable presence whenever Bruce was there. It was the altar of a religion which Bruce served as a priest, raised to a dead boy that wasn't, in spite of the costume in the glass case, Robin.

Sometimes when both Bruce and Tim were in the Cave, Tim would look up from whatever exercise he was doing, as if – as if a sense he'd never known he had had picked up on something, and there would be Bruce, perhaps at the computer reading on some files, or perhaps looking at Tim, or perhaps with a bottle of water in his hand as he took a brief pause from his own training; looking distant like he was an ocean away, Batman's shadows on his face.

Bruce would be there, and the Case would be over there, and Tim would feel his eyes widening for – the light falling only on the two of them, Bruce and the Case, the Case and Bruce, how they were linked – as if there was a chain of mystical energy Tim could almost see running from one to the other. Tim couldn't have said if it happened because Bruce was thinking – brooding – at the Case, or because the Case— The Case was always meant for Bruce.

Jason, though... Tim never knew if Bruce saw Jason when he thought of the Case; if he imagined Jason cursing him, blaming him, telling him Bruce had failed him. If he saw Jason in his Robin outfit, smirk widening into something more (Tim's pictures of Jason told him that the boy was fond of the provocation). If he pictured Jason's body after... Any would be enough to justify the expression on Bruce's face, on Bruce's entire being, when the Case seemed to expand.

Tim's Jason never does that. He never reproaches him, never lets him talks himself down. He's blunt and sort of street-rough, like Tim remembers from the evenings he's seen him on the streets as opposed to bored out of his skull at charity events, and he looks at Tim with narrowed eyes when Tim is giving up too fast and dresses him down to pull him up.

Every time Bruce tells him to up the weights he's benching, Tim fancies he can see Jason grin.

Date: 2010-09-06 01:37 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] saavikam77.livejournal.com
*wibble*

This was perfectly bittersweet. I just love the stark contrast between what Bruce might see and what Tim sees or imagines in regards to the Case.

Date: 2010-09-06 01:56 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] stalinglim.livejournal.com
This. I really would love to see a rewrite of the universe in which Jason actually took to Tim.

Date: 2010-09-06 02:16 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] iesika.livejournal.com
Aw, this is just lovely.

That case is a hell of a thing to have looming over you.

Date: 2010-09-06 04:35 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] glymr.livejournal.com
This is lovely.

For a long while, when Batman was training him as Robin, Tim considered Jason his best friend.

That's totally my head-canon, right there.

Thank you for sharing!

Date: 2010-09-06 09:15 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] dariclone.livejournal.com
Aww, I love the way Tim has his own version of Jason in his mind.

Date: 2010-09-09 07:47 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] runespoor7.livejournal.com
Ah, the more innocent time of-- oh no, wait, they were still being perfectly angsty. Nevermind then.

Glad you like! :D

Date: 2010-09-09 07:49 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] runespoor7.livejournal.com
To be honest I'm not sure I could take that. Fics about it tend to involve more Bats being okay with killing people than I'm good with.

Date: 2010-09-09 07:50 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] runespoor7.livejournal.com
Isn't it just? That's one of the things I'm glad DC never forgot about. Tim's delicious Jason issues.

Date: 2010-09-09 07:53 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] runespoor7.livejournal.com
I think that's pretty much canon for the time period, actually. It's a shame that's a bit of characterization that got lost since then, I'd love to read Tim telling someone that he used to consider Jason as a heroic role-model.

Thank you for telling me you liked!

Date: 2010-09-09 07:56 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] runespoor7.livejournal.com
I guess it was that or be perpetually an outsider in the Bat relationship between Bruce and his Altar of Guilt. ;)

Date: 2010-09-09 12:39 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] glymr.livejournal.com
*nods* Oh, I totally agree with you - like when Tim imagines that Dick and Jason are there, telling him to fight off the effects of Scarecrow's fear gas on his first mission.

Actually, I see it quite a bit in fanfiction, too. Pretty much any Tim/Jay story seems to assume it by default, but not enough of them deal with the fallout from the fact that Jason canonically tried to kill Tim multiple times...

Date: 2010-09-09 12:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] runespoor7.livejournal.com
Well, I guess that depends on how sincerely Jason wanted to kill Tim. I mostly remember him beating the crap out of Tim - and, really, contemplated murder is like foreplay for Jason.

Date: 2010-09-09 12:52 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] glymr.livejournal.com
contemplated murder is like foreplay for Jason.

Heh, true. But considering that he took Hush's place and slashed Tim's throat (retconned into Hush in "Under the Hood"), kicked the shit out of Tim in Titans Tower, and then stabbed him in the chest with a rusty batarang during "Battle for the Cowl", I imagine that Tim, at least, would have a few issues to work through with him before sexytimes could realistically commence.

Then again, who needs realism? *grins*

Date: 2011-04-18 01:33 pm (UTC)
ext_19682: (Aerith)
From: [identity profile] oximore.livejournal.com
"It was the altar of a religion which Bruce served as a priest, raised to a dead boy that wasn't, in spite of the costume in the glass case, Robin."

Okay, this is probably the truest line I ever read about Jason.

Tim & Bruce characterisation is so damn perfect here (oh & Bruce/the case is sorta my crack OTP now).

*cuddle the fic forever*

Date: 2011-04-25 12:42 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] runespoor7.livejournal.com
Okay, this is probably the truest line I ever read about Jason.
It's the only way post-Jason Robins make sense. I have no doubt that in the beginning Bruce meant the case to represent Robin, as a symbol that Robin had been killed and the Robin days were over, but then Tim happened, and... well, Bruce had to admit that he'd made the case for Jason. He never took the costume out, of course, because to do so would've meant rejecting Jason's accomplishments and their partnership and his own guilt, but from that moment on, the Case and the guilt are entirely for Jason.

Bruce/The Case is sorta my AngstTP for Bruce as well.

Date: 2011-10-29 03:37 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] melissagrey.livejournal.com
Ooh, I like how quiet and contemplative this is. That last line was a brilliant touch.
Edited Date: 2011-10-29 03:38 am (UTC)

Date: 2011-10-29 09:47 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] runespoor7.livejournal.com
Thank you! Early Tim had his own issues already, but they were far from as ~dramatic~ as Bruce's. I think the Cave could get oppressive at times.

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