Anon on tumblr requested #30: Is that blood? for birdflash.
Dick is swaying as he walks, leaning against one wall before somehow getting across the hall to lean against the other. It's taking too long to get up to his flat, but he comes across some good luck (or maybe bad luck) and nobody leaves their apartment to investigate the thumping.
He finds his apartment door and shoves his key in, turning it and twisting the knob a few times before he manages to actually unlock it. He gets inside, barely remembering to close the door behind him before making his way to the bathroom. He stumbles through his apartment for a bit, bumping into the couch and the counter as he goes, but eventually, he makes it to the bathroom.
He flicks the light on and goes to the cabinet above the sink to grab the first aid kit. Dick doesn't realize he's taken his shirt off to use as a makeshift towel until he passes the mirror and sees his bare shoulders. He knew he had a shirt pressed to his stomach, he just forgot that it was his own. That explains why he was so cold outside, at least.
Focus, Grayson, you're losing it.
He grabs the kit's handle and pulls it down, causing something else to topple to the floor (onto his foot) in the process. He doesn't pay it much mind, trying to stay focused on his current and much more important task: not dying.
The world keeps shifting and going dark; he needs to hurry up before he passes out.
He sits down on the edge of the tub, pulling out some disinfectant and bandages once he does. He knew by the feel of the wound that he would need to stitches, and one look at his stomach is enough to support that prediction. However, he also knows that he can't deal with that right now. Wouldn't be able to finish like this. As soon as he's not in danger of bleeding out, he'll call someone. He doesn't know who yet, but he knows someone will come. Someone always comes.
His vision blurs again, this time a little harder than the others, and he thinks he feels the kit slip from his hand before a crashing sound echoes through the bathroom. It's not the only thing that falls—in his dizziness, he tips back a little too far, causing him to slide backward and into the tub with a thud. He yells out as he goes down, but no one's around to hear him. He tries and fails to get back up, only wasting what little energy he had left and forcing more blood to pulse out of his stomach. It's hard to keep his eyelids open, and they keep doing these slow, heavy half-blinks while some part of his mind muses that the tub doesn't make a half-bad bed. He knows he shouldn't fall asleep like this (don't do it, don't do it, you'll bleed out and never wake up!), but he lets his eyes close completely anyway.
Wally is dragging his feet as he walks down the hall and toward his apartment door. Half of his classes decided to have exams this week, leaving him completely drained and ready to melt into the couch.
He blindly shoves his key into the lock, turning it only to find that it's already unlocked. His eyebrows tighten in confusion—Dick never leaves the door unlocked. He pushes the door open cautiously, expecting to find the apartment destroyed. But everything seems normal. Still, he hesitantly calls out, "Dick?"
He closes the door with a click, making sure to lock it before dumping his keys in the bowl by the door. Dick's aren't in there to clank against his, though. Instead, they're on the floor, and when Wally bends down to grab them, he notices that Dick's shoes aren't by the door like usual either.
Something's definitely wrong.
He puts Dick's fallen keys in the bowl and slips out of his jacket, hanging it up and looking around the apartment with a frown and furrowed eyebrows. He doesn't take his shoes off before going to survey the apartment, just in case something decides to explode at a moment's notice. He doesn't even stop to wipe them on the mat, not caring if he trapeses muddy puddle water through the now eerie apartment.
"Dick?" he calls again.
He walks toward their bedroom, hoping that Dick had just been too tired to think straight and crashed the second he got home. That hope flies out the window when he sees that the bathroom door is swung open and the light is on.
He's not sure what he's expecting to find, but Dick passed out in the tub with his legs splayed over the edge definitely wasn't it.
Shit, shit, shit.
"Babe, god, what happened?" Wally's asking—panicking—lurching forward to crouch next to Dick. He's already coming to as Wally pulls him from the tub to lie flat on the tile. There's blood coming from what Wally thinks is a stab wound in his upper abdomen, and after a closer look, there's a slice across the palm of his right hand to match. There's a shirt bundled on the ground, the one Dick had been wearing when he left for work that morning. He'd taken it off, and from the amount of blood on it, Wally guesses he'd been using it as a makeshift bandage. It must've slipped out of his hand along with the first aid kit when he fell into the tub.
(And there's also mouthwash on the floor? Wally doesn't know how that plays into the equation, but he doesn't really care at the moment.)
"Wally," Dick says when his eyes focus on him. Doesn't ask or call or whine, just says in this soft, tired voice.
"Right here," Wally assures, grabbing a clean towel to press against the wound. Dick gasps at the sudden pressure, but he doesn't fight it. "What happened? Talk to me."
"Guy had a knife," Dick slurs after a few seconds. He lets his head drop to the side, eyes staring at the blood-soaked dress shirt on the floor next to him. Wally almost thinks he's going to freak out, but he doesn't.
"Yeah?" Stab wound suspicion confirmed. Now he just needs a few more details, like, for example, why his idiot boyfriend didn't call an ambulance. "And you just decided to walk home after you got mugged?"
"I didn't get mugged. I prevented a mugging," Dick corrects, looking back up at him smugly.
A choking noise comes from the back of Dick's throat at the same time Wally feels the stomach below his hands clench. Wally looks up at Dick's face in a panic, finding squinted eyes and a pain-filled face just before red-tinged vomit comes spilling out of his mouth.
Shit, shit, shit!
"Wally!" Dick cries out, curling his legs up and trying to roll onto his side. It's the one word he gets out before he goes back to vomiting and gasping for air. When it's done, Dick is shaking—writhing—and Wally's trying to pull him away from the puddle. Dick's eyes slide open, immediately widening as much as they're anatomically able when they catch the unusually colored vomit. "Oh god, is that blood?"
Dick's bordering on panicky now. He knows what bloody vomit means, they both do. The knife hit his stomach, and god knows what else. Any plans of stitching Dick up himself were blown out of the question the second Wally heard the retching.
"Hey, you're going to be okay, all right? Just hold on a little longer, I'm getting help," Wally tells him, rolling Dick onto his back so that he can put pressure on the wound again.
"Don't go," Dick begs in this choked, desperate voice. His wrist lifts a few inches off of the ground, but it can't get enough strength to reach Wally. It falls back down in defeat, and Dick whines.
"I won't. I'm right here." It takes all of his willpower to not reach out and hold Dick. He knows that's not what needs to be done, he knows that it won't do him any good. Instead, Wally reaches into his back pocket and pulls out his phone, dialing 9-1-1 and pressing call without any hesitation. "Right here."
The 9-1-1 operator stays on the phone with Wally until the ambulance arrives, walking him through first aid procedures that Wally's had memorized since he was a teenager. He plays his part and Dick survives the ride to the hospital. He passes out, though. Blood loss.
They take him into a triage room and Wally's allowed to follow—at first. It gets too crowded, Dick gets too unstable. He needs treatment and Wally needs to go to the waiting room.
So he goes. He doesn't even argue, just leaves. He feels like none of this is really sinking in yet. Everything's moving too fast for him to keep up with; all he has are these facts floating through his head and that image of Dick, passed out and covered in blood, seared into his eyes. Maybe it's a protective mechanism, not letting this sink in yet. He needed to be numb to get Dick help, now he needs to be numb to survive the waiting.
The first thing he does when he gets to the waiting room is call Bruce. Wally rarely calls Bruce, and when he has in the past, it's always been an emergency. It's created a sort of Pavlov effect, with Bruce treating the situation like an emergency the second he answers Wally's calls, never stopping to consider that it might be a social call (or maybe that's just how Bruce responds whenever he answers a phone). And as expected, when Bruce answers Wally's call, the first thing he does is ask what's wrong and if Dick's okay. Wally keeps it short, only telling him that Dick was assaulted and is being treated at Bludhaven Mercy. Bruce doesn't ask any more questions, merely informs Wally that he's on his way. Then Bruce's line goes dead.
Straight to the point, gather information, act. The ways of the Bat.
That leaves Wally to sit in some hospital waiting room chair, knee bouncing too fast while he stares blankly at the TV in a failed attempt to distract himself. He wonders if there's anyone else he should call or if that's not even his job anymore. And even if he did want to call someone, it's not like he has anything to tell them. He has to wait for an update.
He knows Dick will be okay, though. He knows that. But. He's out here waiting all alone, and with this much time on his hands, his mind wanders. And it doesn't help when there's this loud part of his brain telling him he saw Dick alive for the last time when he left the triage room.
About ten minutes go by before a pair of scuffed black shoes enter his field of vision and a firm voice asks, "Wallace West?"
Wally looks up, taking his head out of his hands to find a police officer staring down at him. He thinks it's one of the same guys that came to the apartment with the ambulance. They took pictures.
Wally straightens up. "Yes?"
"Can you answer a few questions about Richard Grayson's attack? We need your statement," the officer explains.
"Yeah, sure. I wasn't there when it happened, though," Wally says, hand going to scratch the back of his head.
"No problem. Just answer what you can," the officer says. Wally nods, and the officer leads him down a hall and into a room that kind of resembles an office. They both sit, and the officer doesn't hesitate with asking his first question. "Do you know where Richard was when he was attacked?"
"He was coming home from work." Easy. "He said he saw something going on and stepped in."
"A robbery? An assault?"
"He didn't say." He said mugging, but that was more of a quip in response to what Wally said, so he can't be sure that that's actually what happened. "He mentioned a knife, and that he stopped whatever happened. Then he went home."
"Why didn't he call an ambulance? Or the police?"
Maybe he did this as Nightwing and not Dick Grayson and Wally just ruined everything.
Wally shrugs. "I don't think he was thinking straight." It's possible he lost his phone in the scuffle, or that the mugger specifically asked for it to ensure his getaway. Wally doesn't know. He's not sure Dick would've called an ambulance for himself even if he'd had a phone, but Wally thinks he would've called the police for the other (almost?) victim. But he didn't, and Wally just hopes he wasn't too far away from home when it happened.
"And where were you when this happened?"
The tone of the question throws Wally off, and oh god, they don't think he did it—do they? It's always the boyfriend rings through Wally's head. But why would he take Dick to the hospital if he had done it? Does that happen? People wimping out of murder attempts?
He mentally shakes his head to clear it. That's a bad, weird road to go down. "I was on my way home from class. I usually get back about ten to fifteen minutes after Dick."
"Can you verify that?"
"Um, I can verify that I was in class, yeah."
"Good. Do you have your teacher's phone number? Or an email address?"
Wally nods, writing down his professor's school-affiliated email on the notepad the officer hands to him. When he hands it back, the officer looks it over. Then, "And where did you find him?"
"He was passed out in the tub. I think he slipped in when he was trying to stop the bleeding."
"And then what did you do first? Did you call an ambulance right away?"
He'd waited. Like an idiot. "I saw the blood and checked on him. I pulled him out of the tub and onto the floor and started putting pressure on the wound. He woke up and I asked him a few questions, and then he started vomiting blood." The sound of vomit hitting tile resonates through Wally's mind with an equally sickening image of it spewing out of Dick's mouth, causing him to shutter a little. "I called 9-1-1 right after that."
"Why didn't you call when you first found him?"
Wally wants to scream. "I-I don't know. I panicked I guess? I had to know if he was—had to make sure he wasn't—" Wally cuts himself off with a swallow.
"Did Richard ask you to call?"
"No," Wally says, a little more defensive than he wanted. Until the bloody vomit, Dick had been calm and content to let Wally patch him up at home.
"Hmm." Wally's regretting everything he's saying. "So, on the phone. What did you do while you waited for the ambulance?"
"I followed the operator's instructions, mostly kept pressure on the wound. Dick passed out again a few minutes before help arrived."
"Anything else you can think of?"
"No, that's pretty much it."
"Okay. Call the station"—the officer hands Wally a card—"if you think of anything."
"Okay, I will." And the officer leaves.
Wally exits the office to make his way back to the waiting room, the pit in his stomach growing with each step. When he turns the corner, he sees Bruce at the front desk talking with one of the nurses. Alfred and Tim are there, too, sitting patiently in the chairs. All three of them turn their heads the second Wally walks in. He gets one look at their eager, questioning faces and realizes he's about to walk into interrogation part two.
The surgery went smoothly. The slice on Dick's hand won't result in any lost function and only required a few stitches, which will dissolve on their own. There were two separate stab wounds directly to his stomach, but the surgeons were able to clean up the abdominal cavity and sew him back together without much trouble. There was another stab wound, but this one was to his chest. Thankfully, his ribs did their job and prevented any serious damage.
He lost a lot of blood, too, but it's been replaced and Dick is doing well. Now their biggest concerns are watching for excess swelling and infection. Really, he's just lucky the blade never managed to hit his aorta. If it had, he would've bled out in minutes. He wouldn't have made it to the building, and Wally would be out looking for his body instead of waiting to go see him in the recovery room.
Except, he doesn't actually end up getting to go see Dick in the recovery room because Bruce gets to see him first. Wally and Dick aren't married, and at Dick's age (apparently) the parent still gets priority over the boyfriend. And even if that's not technically policy, well—Bruce. If he wants to go in first, he's going in first. Wally is definitely not going to argue with him, so he accepts it without even thinking. Wally watches Bruce go to the post-op room with one of the surgeons, and a nurse comes to get the rest of them about forty minutes later.
There are no limits on how many visitors Dick can have in his actual hospital room at once, which is a relief in more ways than one. Wally's had too many experiences of Dick in some version of an ICU and himself in a hallway, waiting for his turn to see him. Hoping Dick makes it to his turn.
But that's not what happens this time. This time he gets to walk right in and see him. He's talking with Bruce when he gets there, but Dick stops and turns his head to the door when Bruce looks up. He looks exhausted and a little dazed, but not too bad all things considered.
He gives the group a soft and tired but genuine smile. "Hey, all of you came."
Wally doesn't mention that he rode here in the ambulance—clutching his hand, whispering unheard promises—with him. He wonders how much Dick remembers. He was out of it, delusional even, and there's a good chance Dick has no recollection of the bathroom. The tub.
Wally opens his mouth to say something, but Tim beats him to the chase. "How are you feeling?"
"All right," Dick says, and even though he doesn't shrug, it sounds like there's a shrug in his voice. "I've had worse. This is no big deal."
Knowing Dick's medical history, Wally can confirm that he's right. Recovery wise, this will be no big deal. But. He still almost died on their bathroom floor (a bathroom that they're somehow supposed to go back to using like it's nothing, a bathroom still covered in Dick's blood).
"And we are all relieved to hear it, Master Dick," Alfred says, letting his hand rest on Dick's knee. "I take it that you will alert the medical staff if you begin to feel less okay or require another dose of painkillers, yes?"
"Course, Alfie," Dick promises, smiling again.
Alfred grips his knee tighter for a second before releasing it and patting it a few times. "Good lad."
"Hey, babe." Wally kisses the top of his head, holding his face with one hand and breathing him in. "You scared me."
"I'm okay," Dick tells him, holding onto Wally's arm with his good, unsliced and unbandaged hand. "Really."
"I know." Except it doesn't feel real yet. Right now, all he wants is for everyone to leave so he can curl up next to Dick and hold him. Just hold him. "I know."
"Then relax," he says, like someone who wasn't in a stabbing a few hours ago.
Dick's expecting a response, so Wally says, "Okay."
Dick tugs on Wally's arm to get him to sit down on the bed with him. Wally pulls Dick against himself and kisses the top of his head one more time.
Bruce stands, letting his chair scrape against the floor so they hear him. "I'm going to find your doctor."
Dick sighs and lets his hands fall onto the bed, exasperated. "You just talked to her."
"I spoke with her in the recovery room. That was almost an hour ago, and it was a brief discussion," Bruce counters.
"Bruce, why can't you trust people to do their jobs?" Dick asks. Wally can't tell if Dick's arguing because he wants Bruce to stay or if it's just become part of how they communicate.
Bruce pauses as if he's trying to figure it out for himself. "Hn," he finally voices, but he doesn't continue his thought, simply walks out the door without another word.
Tim shakes his head, the weight on his shoulders finally falling off. "He was kind of freaking out," Tim admits, taking a seat on the bed near Dick's feet.
"Yeah?" Dick asks lightly.
"He was looking up the hospital's stats on his phone and everything," Tim tells them.
"He didn't have them memorized already?" Dick asks.
"Oh, he totally did. Just Bruce habits," Tim decides. "Alfred had to take his keys from him too."
"I feared that in his panic he would refrain from engaging in a minimum degree of road safety, and it was rush-hour after all."
Dick laughs at that, clutching his stomach and a flash of pain crosses his face. It passes, though, and Dick manages to keep up his happy, calm composure. "Was he mad?"
"Steaming," Tim says.
They don't talk for long, but despite it being short-lived, it was fun and put them all in a much-needed relaxed state. Dick's out cold by the time Bruce comes back, curled around Wally's side like the clingy octopus he is.
"Any update?" Wally asks him quietly.
Bruce grunts, telling them that he was just given the information they already knew. Or that he never found the doctor and gave up. Wally isn't sure.
"It was a good call," Bruce says abruptly, this time looking Wally in the eye. His form of thank you. "Even with his aorta intact, calling an ambulance was the only viable option. His odds of survival were too low to risk taking him to Gotham."
Wally nods, not sure how to respond. His chest tightens, and in response, he holds Dick a little tighter too. Wally finds himself saying, "I thought he was going to die in the bathroom before the EMTs even got there. I had to leave him to open the door." It was one of the hardest things Wally has ever done.
Bruce doesn't say anything, no one says anything. Wally keeps talking. For some reason, he decides now is a good time to share his secret: "They think I did it."
"No, they don't," Bruce says, completely certain.
"Before you got here, a police officer pulled me aside to get my statement. Asked me for alibis," Wally says, burying his nose in Dick's hair to avoid looking at his boyfriend's family.
"If they thought you did it," Bruce starts, "they wouldn't have let you back here. You're not going to be tried with anything."
"Right. But they still thought I had something to do with it." Which brought up these awful images and feelings. The idea that he would ever hurt Dick, let alone—no. Don't go there, don't think about it.
"It's nothing personal," Tim adds, and somewhere, the logical part of Wally knows that. "They just had to check all of their bases."
"I know." He needs to get off this topic. He jumps one block over. "Did Dick talk to the police yet?"
Bruce shakes his head. "He's not exactly at a point where he can attempt recall."
"Did he say anything to you?" Bruce is probably already considering opening his own investigation. This is Dick after all; Bruce will have no problem "randomly" showing up in Bludhaven as Batman to pin the perp who made the mistake of stabbing his son.
"Not much," Bruce grunts. "He took Dick's phone"—good, so Dick didn't intentionally choose to not call an ambulance for himself—"so I'll be able to track it and hopefully either find him or prints. The women got away unharmed, and he said she was wearing a Bludhaven Bean uniform. It's not much, but it should be workable."
Tim asks Bruce a few more questions about the case, offering his own opinions and ideas from what Bruce said about Dick's recollection. Wally doesn't pay attention to most with it, and the adrenaline rush that hasn't let up from when he first touched his flat's doorknob finally starts to abate. The exhaustion from late-night studying sessions, the stress of exams, and today's events all catch up with him and pin him to the mattress.
He drifts, and no one stops him.
"Wa-lly," Dick says in a sing-song voice, one finger poking against Wally's cheek.
"Mmmm," Wally murmurs, turning his face away from Dick.
"You have to get off of me," Dick says, amused, and gives Wally's shoulder a playful shove.
It almost feels like they're home in their own bed. But the beeping monitors, sterilized scent, and bright lighting refuse to let him buy into that fantasy.
Wally opens his eyes, looking up to see a small group of medical staff looking down at him, smiling politely. Tim looks like he's stifling a laugh, Alfred's face looks content, and Bruce is all frowns.
"He's a heavy sleeper," Dick explains as Wally rolls off of the bed, his cheeks blushing enough to match his hair.
The doctors examine Dick and his wounds, then ask some procedural questions. One of the residents tells them Dick will be off of food for forty-eight hours, but they'll send a nurse in later to give him ice chips if he feels up to it. Other than that, his hospital stay is estimated to be five days, presuming nothing changes.
Dick seems annoyed, and after the staff leaves, he's muttering about it being unfair that he can't just go home when he's clearly fine. He's so focused on his so-called imprisonment that Wally doesn't even think Dick processed the no food rule.
Wally checks the clock, realizing how late it's gotten. He needs to go back to the apartment since he didn't bring anything with him except for his phone and wallet. And if he doesn't want to leave Dick alone, he'll have to get moving soon as he's sure the others will be heading back to Gotham within the next hour or two for their nightly activities.
"I'm going to head back to the apartment to get some things," Wally announces, standing up from his seat with a stretch. "Do you need anything, babe?"
"Some sweats and t-shirts," Dick says, picking at the gown in displeasure. "A toothbrush."
Wally smiles softly. "Sure thing. Anything else? We'll be here for a while." And a bored Dick is almost as bad as a dying Dick. (Except, not really. A Dick who's complaining and annoying the hell out of Wally is so, so much better than no Dick at all.)
"Laptop," Dick adds after a second. Wally gives him another minute—mostly to give Dick a chance to think of more things, but also because Wally isn't pumped about leaving his side. When Dick opens his mouth next, Wally thinks he's going to get a list, but instead, Dick's face falls and he moans. "I need to call the station."
"That's already been taken care of," Bruce replies. He'd been the one to do it, too.
"Did you ask them to pay me overtime?" Dick asks jokingly, smirking as he turns his head to face Bruce. Wally and Tim both give an airy laugh at that, and Alfred shakes his head fondly.
"No," Bruce deadpans, ignoring Dick's attempt at a joke. "But I did find out that the woman never called the police. My guess is that she knows the perpetrator. It's likely to be domestic."
Dick's smirk slides off his face and is instantly replaced by a grimace. "I hate domestic cases." Too many times, the victims don't press charges and the abuser walks. Dick does his best to help where he can, where Nightwing can, but it doesn't always end well.
Bruce knows that. "We'll be able to pin him." Even if the woman doesn't press charges, Dick's assault case is strong.
Dick's grimace doesn't leave, but there's something in his eyes that says he believes Bruce. "Good."
It takes Batman two days to close the case. Dick is happy, and so is the woman involved. She was trying to leave the guy when the fight broke out and he pulled a knife. Dick stepped in and she fled, but she didn't see that Dick had gotten hurt. She figured he had called the police, but she was too scared to do so herself (her abuser had connections inside, friends). She sent Dick flowers and a card.
That was the most exciting thing that happened throughout Dick's entire stay. He mostly just slept, letting Wally cuddle him protectively. Nurses were in every few hours, a doctor in the morning and then again later in the afternoon. A physical therapist came by on day three to get Dick up and walking around (and he did amazing, even if his legs were a little shaky the first go around), and then that same day he got to eat solid food. Jell-O, which Dick insisted was the best thing he'd ever tasted.
Five days after the incident, Wally is pushing a wheelchair out to the car, Dick sitting in it with a bag held loosely in his lap. He'd been looking forward to going home his entire stay, but knowing that he would be getting out that afternoon had left him itching all morning. He kept checking the time, and he had packed up his few belongings before he even brushed his teeth. He didn't even roll his eyes at the hospital's policy that he had to be wheeled out in a wheelchair. He was too happy to oblige, actually, knowing that voicing any complaints would only delay his departure.
When they get outside, Dick takes a deep breath before giving a content sigh. It's the first bit of fresh air he's had in a while, and despite his family's tendencies, Wally thinks he missed the sun too.
Wally helps Dick into the passenger seat before getting himself situated. He turns the car on, twisting a knob to make the heat go up higher.
"Got everything?" Wally asks.
"Ugh," Dick whines, throwing his head back dramatically in feigned annoyance. "C'mon, take me home already."
Wally breathes out a laugh, but he complies. When he makes it out of the hospital parking lot, Dick grabs Wally's hand and holds onto it the whole ride home. It feels normal, good—like them.
Wally pulls into their assigned parking spot, tugging his hand away from Dick's to open his door. He grabs the bags, throwing them over his shoulder and onto his back before walking around to get Dick's door.
"Are you okay to walk?" Wally asks him, helping Dick up.
"I think so." Dick forces himself away from Wally, taking a few test steps. So far so good.
Wally walks a few feet behind him the whole time. It's a little weird, but Dick knows it's a necessary precaution. After spending most of the past week horizontal, his legs are on the weak side.
They take the elevator up, Dick not thinking much of it until the hair on his arms stands up. He stiffens, clutching the railing as the memory of his last time in this elevator forces its way into conscious awareness. Him, bent over, forcing each step and not knowing if he would make it to his apartment. Him, managing to push the button and watching the doors slide shut, wondering if he would be collapsed when they open-ended next. Him, picturing the poor civilian who would find his body in a pool of blood.
"Dick?" Wally touches his shoulder. "You okay?"
"Hmm?" Oh. "Yeah, just a little tired."
"Can you make it?" There's a ding and the doors slide open. He made it, just like he had five days ago.
"Uh-huh." He walks down the hall, walking in a straight line and avoiding looking at the walls that had kept him upright the last time he passed them. He really wasn't expecting to have this kind of reaction.
"Here we go," Wally is saying, opening the door and gesturing for Dick to go in first. "Welcome home."
Dick walks in, flicking on the light as he enters. The apartment is surprisingly clean, cleaner than he or Wally have ever seen it. Except for maybe when they first moved in and there had been nothing but carpeting. It even smells nicer than Dick remembered.
"Alfred," Wally explains. "I'm not sure when he came by and did it—maybe day two of your hospital stay?"
"He cleaned the whole place?" The bathroom?
"Yup. And he left food in our fridge."
Dick smiles. "Alfred's the best." He'll have to call him later.
"Hmmm," Wally agrees. "So where do you want to be? Couch or bed or?"
He's spent too much time in a bed, he needs some change in scenery, a little freedom that a bed just can't provide.
"Couch," Dick decides, kicking his shoes off and slipping out of his coat before heading to the slightly broken but still perfectly functional piece of furniture. He falls with his head in the corner, lying on his side to avoid putting excess pressure on his healing wound. He lets out a happy sigh and strokes the fabric a few times. "I missed you, couch."
Dick sees Wally shaking his head in his peripheral, but he thinks there's a smile there too. "I'll put this stuff away. Be right back."
Dick closes his eyes, listening to the noises of Wally bustling around. He likes the lack of beeping, loves the noises their apartment makes. Noises he'd never fully appreciated before.
"Babe?" Wally asks when he comes back.
Dick opens his eyes to find Wally kneeling in front of him. "Huh?"
Wally lets his chin rest on the couch, right next to Dick's cheek. "Just checking to see if you were awake."
"Come here," Dick says, scooching up against the couch's back to make room for Wally.
Wally doesn't hesitate, sliding right up against Dick's chest. Dick stares into Wally's eyes, noticing the different shades of green that make them up.
"Is this okay?" Wally asks, eyes flicking down to Dick's stomach. "I don't want to hurt you."
"You're not," Dick tells him. "Stay."
"I'm not going anywhere," Wally promises. He raises his hand to rest against the side of Dick's head, fingers at the perfect height to play with Dick's hair.
"Good." Dick presses his face into Wally's neck. "Me neither."
"That's right. And if you ever try something like that again, I'll drag you back here myself just to yell at you."
"Yeah. Like it or not, you're stuck with me for a while."
Dick nods, smiling in a way that only Wally can make him smile. Getting "stuck" with Wally is one of the best things that has ever happened to him. So yeah, he's okay with that. Very, very okay with that.
Thanks for reading, I hope you liked it! Feel free to leave a review below if you like. You can find me on tumblr under the-imaginative-fox if you want to see what I'm up to or even leave a prompt request of your own. Have a great day :)