Malepresentingleg on tumblr said: 9 or 11 for the drabble list with birdflash if you want (:
Anon on tumblr said: hi! if you'd like, could you write something with 23 and/or 25 and/or 28 and birdflash? Thank you!
Prompts: 9: "My head hurts." and 25: "I'm scared."
Dick wakes up on a dirt floor. His head hurts, he feels dizzy, and he's—nauseous maybe? He doesn't feel right, and his body feels like it's taken a beating recently. He forces his eyes open, but it's too dark to really see anything in detail. He slides his hand down to one of his pouches and pulls out a glow stick, cracking it so that a glowing red light shines across his surroundings. About a foot away from his face is his comm, but—just his luck—it's been crushed.
Something in his stomach drops; he needs help, and now his one mode of communication is gone. He picks up the useless device and places it in one of the pockets, hoping that he isn't too far away from home.
He pushes himself up and into a standing position, holding onto the wall for support. He stumbles forward (and he does mean stumble; he thinks there's something wrong with his leg), just barely remaining upright. He keeps one hand against the wall as he walks through what he thinks is some kind of mine. The details of how he got there are fuzzy to say the least, but he can't shake the feeling that he's missing someone and that someone else (someone bad) is after them.
The first unknown is answered when Dick turns a corner to find Bruce lying on his side.
"Batman!" he cries out, running to him and falling back down on his knees to shake him. "Batman, can you hear me?"
He checks for a pulse and breathing, which are both there and fine. Pulse steady and slow, breathing deep and even, almost like he's just sleeping. He leans in to get a closer look at Bruce's face only to find wide eyes staring into the middle-distance. "Bruce?" he asks insistently, giving the man's shoulder another shove.
Dick sits back on his heels, trying not to panic. He has to get them out of here, but walking was hard enough before, and now he's going to have to carry Bruce out of here. And without a map or any memory of getting here, that's going to be very difficult.
Good thing difficult isn't impossible.
He leans forward and drapes Bruce's arm over his shoulder, and then he hoists both of them up. Even with Dick's latest growth spurt, Bruce is still a lot taller than him, and he packs way more muscle. Luckily, Bruce is capable of holding some of his own weight. He leans heavily on Dick, though, but at least he takes a step forward when Dick does. Whatever catatonic state he's been placed in, at least it's one where he's complicit. Small mercies.
"Okay," Dick says, taking another shaky step forward, "we're just going to keep moving until we find an exit. Easy."
He doesn't know how long they're walking, but he feels like he's just getting more lost. He knows that if he keeps walking, eventually he'll find an exit. He just has to stick it out, one painful step after the other. One foot, then the other, one foot, then the—
He kicks something, the sounds of metal clattering against the ground echoing through the tunnel. He leans over with his glow stick stretched out to get a closer look, and a grin spreads over his face: it's a communicator.
He sets Bruce down and goes to pick it up. He didn't even think to check Bruce for one—damn his head is fuzzy—and if he had, he would've known to look for it on the ground. He's lucky he didn't step on it, he's lucky he kicked it. Had he been one foot over, he never would've found it and they would've been screwed. But none of that matters because he has a working communicator! Sure, it's a little banged up, but definitely fixable. He toys with the wires for a few minutes, and when it looks right, he pops it in his ear. He turns the knob to their usual channel, but all he gets is static.
It's not the worst thing, he tells himself. It's working, they're just in too deep to get a good signal. If he keeps walking (as long as he's actually heading towards an exit and not just deeper into the cavern), eventually he'll get a signal. He'll get help, he'll get them out. He just has to keep moving.
"Please find a signal, please find a signal," Dick finds himself repeating under his breath after what must have been ten minutes of nothing. He's messing with the knob again, just trying to get any signal to connect. It's been minutes and he's still getting nothing. He should probably just leave it alone, or maybe he should turn around and try to—
He knows that voice almost as well as he knows his own.
"KF, thank god!" The connection is still a little staticky, but it's there. "Can you track my signal and get a location?"
"Yeah, yeah, just a second," is Wally's immediate response. "Wanna fill me in on what's happening, Rob?"
"Not entirely sure," Dick admits, pace slowing down. He's tired, and now that he knows someone is going to come for them, finding an exit on his own doesn't feel as urgent. "I woke up in what I'm pretty sure is a mineshaft. Batman is in some kind of catatonic state and I don't think I can carry him much longer." And Dick's headache is getting worse, but that's not a priority, so he doesn't mention it. Wally has enough information. They're going to get a medical evac and he can deal with it then. Everything is going to be fine.
"We really need to get new internships," Wally jokes.
"No kidding." Dick forces himself to take a few more steps.
"Does anyone know you're missing?"
"I don't know. Probably? You're the first person I was able to reach, and I'm guessing our locators are down." He did try pressing his panic button a while ago, but it didn't even blink back at him.
"I'll call Agent A in a minute; he's probably worried." Dick hums in agreement, takes another step. "Got it! Okay, you were right about the mineshaft thing. You're also not even in Gotham; actually, you're kind of close to me."
"Yeah, about thirty minutes out. I'm on a JLA thing with Flash and a few others."
"Can't wait to hear about it. Guessing that means it's daytime up on top?"
"Yup. I have your line saved, just keep it open. I'm going to call Agent A and find Flash to tell him what's going on. Sit tight."
Dick takes it literally and sits down on the ground, leaning Bruce next to him against a wall. "You're the best."
"I know." And then Wally's voice is gone, leaving only static.
When Wally comes back, he doesn't have good news.
"Okay, so talked to Agent A and I have good news: you actually went on a daytime field trip and have only been gone for about four hours. Communication went down about two hours ago, but that wasn't entirely surprising. You were also after Simon, so that probably explains your memory loss and Batman's current state."
That's not too bad, two hours isn't bad. "And?"
"And the not so great news is that the mineshaft you're in has been shut down because of carbon monoxide."
"That's not good," Dick groans and gets to work on standing back up. How long does it take for that stuff to be deadly? It depends on the levels, he supposes. He should watch for symptoms, but he for some reason he can't remember the warning signs. He needs to get up and move. How long was Wally gone? How long has he just been sitting here, killing himself and Bruce?
"No kidding. Flash was able to find a map of the place, and you're not too far from an exit. Doubt the lift is still running, but you have grapples on you, right?"
Dick checks. "Yeah. Which way?"
"North." Dick pulls out a compass, grateful that Bruce forces him to carry one even though Dick had rolled his eyes at first.
"Cool, we've been heading in that direction, actually." Another small mercy, Dick supposes.
He starts walking again, Bruce feeling heavier than before.
"You're not having any symptoms, are you?"
"Uh, carbon monoxide poising? Headache, shortness of breath, that sort of thing?" Wally prompts.
Oh, right, those symptoms. "Headache for sure. Kind of dizzy, and my breathing is—" How is his breathing? It's kind of laborious, but he's also carrying Bruce. "—not as easy as usual, but not terrible."
"And I think you're starting to get some confusion there, dude," Wally adds. "How long have you had the headache?"
"Woke up with it. Not sure how long ago that was, though. Maybe half an hour? Forty-five minutes." He feels like he's been walking for hours, but that can't be right.
"And Batman?" Wally asks.
"He seems fine, but I can't really tell," Dick admits before unwillingly crashing down to the ground.
"What was that?" Wally asks.
"Nothing, just fell," Dick says. "I think I hurt my leg."
"In the fall?"
"No, before. Woke up and it was like this," Dick explains and stands back up. One foot, then the other, one foot, then the other. Again and again, and soon they'll be at the exit with fresh air and sunlight and medical attention and Wally.
"And you've been carrying Batman on it?" Wally asks.
"There's not exactly another choice, is there?" Dick rubs his eyebrows. He would kill for a nap right now.
"Right, sorry." There's a pause. "I don't like not knowing whether or not you're okay."
"Me neither," Dick says, tries to take a deep breath.
"We're already on our way; twenty-six minutes," Wally tells him. "You're doing great, just keep moving. Love you."
Dick tries to fake a smile even though Wally's not actually around to see it. "Love you more."
"My head hurts." He sounds pathetic, but it's true. Every step makes it pound more, and holding up Bruce is too hard. He feels like he's going to fall over, and he just needs a break. Five minutes to catch his breath and sit.
"I'm sorry," Wally comforts from the other line. "But you need to keep going, okay?"
"I'm trying." He is. But he's so tired, and Bruce is so heavy.
"The opening should be right around the corner."
And it is. He gets to the opening Wally was guiding him to, but there's a problem. A big problem.
"No, no, no, no," he's saying, eyes wide as he stares at the debris filling what was supposed to be their exit.
"What is it? What's happening?" Wally sounds urgent, but Dick doesn't really process it.
Dick sets Bruce down on the ground faster than he should be capable of right now and practically runs to giant the pile of rock and dirt, landing on his knees hard enough to bruise before he starts to desperately claw at the barricade. "The lift—it's-it's caved in. There's no way out. We're trapped." They're trapped, they're trapped!
"Okay, okay, stay calm. I'm almost there. Thirteen minutes."
"How are you going to get us out? We can't use explosives or we'll blow the whole place up!"
"We can dig you out."
"We don't have time," Dick argues, and they don't. The air is getting hard to breathe, and the exertion caused by digging isn't helping. Everything hurts, he's tired—he's going to die. They're going to die. "I don't know what else to do."
Feeling defeated, he stops his digging and sinks down to lie on the floor, already too dizzy and out of breath to go on.
"All you have to do is stay calm and preserve your air. Martian Manhunter was already on his way to help with Batman, so he can just levitate the rocks to get out safely. We're going to get you out and everything's going to be okay."
Except it's not, because Dick feels like he's dying and Bruce is unresponsive and his last glow stick is dying out. He's alone in the dark with a pile of rocks keeping him trapped in what he's sure will soon become his tomb. He's can't see how he's going to get out of this, and he's scared. "I'm . . . Wally, I'm scared."
"Everything's going to be okay," Wally says again. "You're fine, the situation is just a little overwhelming. But we can handle it, you can handle it."
Maybe, and Dick wants to believe him, he does—but. Dick feels trapped, and his vision is starting to fade (has been fading). He feels like he's used up all of his optimism and now he's having a hard time believing Wally. And Bruce, he was supposed to get him out of this. That's Robin's job, to protect Batman. But he failed, and now this is his punishment.
"Bruce?" Dick tries calling. He crawls over to the man, bumping against his shoulder. "Bruce, please, snap out of it."
"Di—er, Robin. Listen, Batman can't hear you right now. Just try to stay calm, okay?" Wally says, but his voice is being drowned out by the rushing in Dick's ears. Why won't Bruce wake up? Why won't he listen to him? Can't he hear him screaming?
He lies back down on the ground, this time right up next to Bruce. It makes him feel like a little kid instead of the sixteen-year-old that he is, but he doesn't care. He's tired, his chest and his head hurt, everything hurts. He's scared and he wants his dad.
"I'm going to get you out of there, I promise," Wally tells him.
Dick doesn't answer, just squeezes his eyes tighter and scrambles through the darkness for Bruce's hand.
"Robin, just say something," Wally pleads. "Dick, please?"
But even if Dick wanted to say something back, he wouldn't have been able to. He was already asleep.
Through closed eyelids, Dick can sense a sudden brightness. Still, he can't move, not even to squint his eyes tighter against the unpleasant light.
That's him, he should probably answer that. But he can't quite break the surface of consciousness.
Something pushes against his neck. ". . . breathing . . . lips . . . blue." Words come in and out as he fades in and out of awareness. It's hard to focus, and none of it makes sense. He can't tell if it's just one voice or a hundred. It wouldn't make a difference to him, he just wants them to be quiet and let him sleep.
His body is lifted upward, and he feels colder and dizzier than before.
". . . he'll . . . oxygen . . . get . . . then Batman."
He feels that upward pull again, but this one lasts longer and makes his stomach flip. He feels himself gag, and on reflex, he turns his head to the side just before he vomits and retches. Someone's setting him on the ground and rubbing his back, the world is starting to make sense again.
"You're alright," a man is telling him. "I've got him, take care of Batman."
"Can't breathe," Dick says, chocking on his words before vomiting again. He's so dizzy.
Someone squeezes his hand. "Hey, you're okay. Got you out, just like I promised." Wally.
Dick moves his head to lean against Wally's shoulder, and Wally accepts him and rubs his arm.
"Robin?" It's a JLA paramedic. "I'm just going to check you over and then we'll get you and Batman to the Watchtower."
Dick nods as she slips what must be an oxygen mask over his face. He tries to stay awake to answer questions, but his eyelids fall shut before he can even process the first one.
When he wakes up—really wakes up—he's in a bed with something simultaneously squeezing and rubbing over his hand. There's also something on his face and trailing down to his upper chest. He remembers hearing snippets of conversations, back at what must have been the medical evac, and then later at what must have been triage. He can't remember details, just voices and freckles.
"Mmm," Dick groans as he pulls his eyes open. He's feeling better, he thinks, but still not great. His head still hurts, and his leg feels weird. Cold.
The something around his hand—another hand, he realizes—squeezes tighter and stops rubbing. "Dick?"
Freckles and red hair. Wally. "Hey," Dick says slowly, meeting his eyes. "You got us out."
"Don't say you doubted the great Wall-man," Wally says with a wink and Dick smiles and rolls his eyes. "You feeling okay?"
"I think so," Dick says. He lifts his free hand to feel what's on his face: an oxygen mask with a bag attached at the bottom; it must be a non-rebreather then. He rolls his leg to test it out, finding the coldness to be from a bag of ice. No cast, so probably just a bad bruise. He'll take it. "Where's Bruce?"
"Over there," Wally says, gesturing at another bed with his chin, and Dick turns his head to follow. "Martian Manhunter says he'll be out for another few hours, though."
"But he's okay?" He has a non-rebreather mask on his face, too. His eyes are closed now, which Dick thinks is an improvement over those piercing yet unseeing eyes.
"Yeah, he'll be fine. Just needs some time to recover after Simon. Martian Manhunter checked you over, too. He said you were brain blasted—"
"Would that explain the lingering headache?"
Wally gives him a sort of shrug-nod. "Toss-up between that and the carbon monoxide poisoning. Luckily neither were too bad and there shouldn't be any permanent damage."
"Yeah." Something still doesn't make sense though. "I don't get why he put B in a catatonic state when he just knocked me out."
"Apparently, Batman regained consciousness pretty quickly and freaked out on them, so Simon retaliated and did something that would be more permanent. Nothing Martian Manhunter couldn't fix, though," Wally is quick to add.
"Huh." Dick pulls his eyes off of Bruce and looks at Wally again. "Time frame on memory recovery?"
"Martian Manhunter said he would be in later to help with that part, but he wanted to wait until you were feeling better and could think clearly."
"How long ago did we get back?"
Wally looks over at the wall where a digital clock is hanging. "A little less than an hour ago, but you've only been in an actual room for maybe thirty minutes, and Bruce just got here, like, ten minutes ago or something."
"Someone should probably call Alfred," Dick says.
"Already filled him in. He'll pick you guys up once you're cleared," Wally says.
"You really took care of everything."
"I try," Wally says, the corners of his mouth flicking up into a soft smile.
"Thanks, for getting us out," Dick says, reaching for Wally's hand again.
"Course, but you did all the work."
Without the map—without Wally's encouragement—Dick thinks he would've just stopped moving. He would've given up. They'd be dead if it wasn't for Wally. "Sit with me?"
Wally climbs up onto the bed next to Dick and wraps his arms around him. Dick leans into the hold, letting his head find a comfortable spot under Wally's chin. It feels warm and safe, and even though Dick doesn't really feel that tired anymore, he finds himself starting to doze off again.
"Kind of sucks that you have to get hurt for us to be able to hang out," Wally's voice rumbles, and though the sentence sounds like it comes from a place of annoyance, his tone is absent of that feeling.
"What are you talking about? We hang out," Dick counters. As he says this though, he's trying to think about the last time the two of them hung out. Actually hung out, not just seen each other on missions.
"No, we make plans to hang out," Wally corrects. "I'm not mad; we've both been busy. But I'm about to head off to college, and I feel like I never see you anymore, and that's not going to get better."
"We'll see each other. We could start date night or something."
"You work at night," Wally points out. "Besides, you have homework and stuff. Plus, you're still working on that sleep thing, aren't you?"
"Okay, date afternoon then," Dick says, ignoring Wally's last comment. "I guess we haven't really been making time for each other."
"Not your fault."
"Well it's not yours either." He's missed Wally, too. Texting and random video calls aren't cutting it. "We should do something this weekend."
"It's Sunday," Wally says with a soft laugh. "And I think you're stuck here for at least a few more hours, babe."
"They make oxygen tanks with wheels now," Dick says, pushing away from Wally to sit up on his own.
"Ooh, fancy. This place has everything," Wally replies, leaning forward onto Dick's back.
"Where's my suit?" If they're leaving, he's not going in a gown.
"I really think you're supposed to stay in bed and rest," Wally argues, pulling Dick back so they're resting against the pillows again. Wally has a piece of Dick's hair and twirling it between his fingers. "I don't know why, something about oxygen deprivation."
"I wasn't going to leave the Watchtower, and I'll even take these monitors with me," Dick bargains.
"Sitting," is all Wally says.
"You're working against me here," Dick complains, but he's accepting that they're not leaving the room. "I'm just trying to give you a date night."
"We can do that here."
Yeah, but Dick doesn't really want to hang out in the room where Bruce still isn't conscious and Bruce. He doesn't want to think about the mine anymore.
"Come on, we can watch a movie or something," Wally says, rocking Dick a little when he doesn't respond. "Di-ick."
"Fine," Dick gives in, but he's smiling a little when he does. Wally's cute when he whines like that. "But next weekend we're doing something. Actually doing something."
And Wally always keeps his promises.
What's this, two fics in the same week? It's either a miracle or I'm on spring break and finally have some time to actually write lmao. Anyway, thanks for the prompts, they were fun to fill! I hope you liked it :)