Chapter 7: To Mother Russia
The days flew by rather quickly, soon enough, Richard found himself packing his bags in Wayne Manor. His flight was set for tomorrow afternoon.
"Dude, I can't believe you're heading to Russia. Like damn man, isn't it cold there?", a familiar read-headed speedster asked.
Richard chuckled, "Not really, movies and TV shows tend to make it look like Russia's cold as fuck. In reality though, it isn't, well, except during fall and winter I guess."
The speedster was chilling-out on the Boy Wonder's bed, his hands pressing firmly on the remote as he tried to find a good channel to watch.
"Still though, you sure you're up for it?", Wally asked, "I mean, you did just recover from your wound."
"I'll be fine man.", the Boy Wonder assured him, "We'll get in, gather intel, get awarded, and get out. It'll be a cakewalk."
"I dunno man, I mean, this Gamecaller guy might try something funny while you guys are over there."
"Trust me, we can handle it."
The League considered to just let Robin and Green Arrow use the Zeta Tubes to Moscow; however, after coming to the realization that it would be too suspicious that they we're able to arrive so soon, they decided against it.
As Richard had just finished closing his suitcase, there was a knock on his bedroom door.
"Master Dick, may I come in?", the voice of a familiar English butler asked.
Richard turned around to face the door, "Yeah Alfred?"
"I wish to inform you that dinner is ready sir, and I assume that Master Wallace will dine with us tonight? Yes?"
Richard rolled his eyes, "Yeah yeah he will."
"Excellent.", the butler commented whilst clasping his hands together, "We will be waiting downstairs for you then."
As Alfred left the doorway, Wally sprung up from where he sat on Richard's bed.
"Sweet!", he exclaimed, "Nothing beats a good day like Alfie's cooking!"
Richard sighed, "Hold your horses man, we'll get there soon enough."
The following morning, Richard decided to take Zatanna out for a meal before he left. They we're currently strolling through the streets of Gotham, their hands intertwined with each other.
"Why are you looking at me like that?", Richard laughed, it was very obvious that Zatanna wanted something from him.
Zee pouted, "Oh nothing. Just thinking of something."
Richard gave her a knowing look, "You're jealous about Svetlana, aren't you?"
Zatanna did her best to shrug it off, "I don't know what you're talking about."
Richard halted, he pulled Zatanna towards him and placed his hands on her shoulders, "You're jealous, aren't you?"
"Let go of me!"
"Not until you answer me!"
"I'll call the cops on you!"
Richard gave her a curious look, "You wouldn't dare."
Zatanna smirked, "Try me, Boy Blunder."
Richard sighed and pulled her in for a hug, "So you are jealous, aren't you?"
Zee pouted, "Of course I'm jealous, you idiot! You're going to Russia for fuck's sake! That's her turf for crying out loud!"
"Zee, I told you, me and Svetlana talked about it, there's nothing going on between us."
"I know, but still, who knows what'll happen while you're over there? For all I know, you could be bumping it out with some other weird Russian chick!"
Richard chuckled, "I made you a promise remember? I'll never do something like that ever again. Besides, I don't think Bruce'll like it that I'll die when I get back."
Zatanna giggled, "Nah, I'm pretty sure he won't mind paying for your funeral."
Eventually, Richard decided to lean in for a kiss. Zatanna smiled as his lips fell on hers.
After some time, the couple pulled apart, wide grins present on their faces.
"You better keep you word Dick Grayson.", the magician threatened, "Otherwise Bruce'll have to look for another son to adopt."
Richard laughed, "Oh trust me, I'd very much would love to keep on living."
"So? Any idea as to where we're heading?", Zee inquired.
"I was hoping we head on over to Fred's Diner for breakfast?"
"Oh goodie! I love their morning pancake specials!"
"I take it as a yes then? Woah!"
Soon enough, the magician sprinted through the streets of Gotham as she made her way to the diner with her beloved Boy Wonder in-tow.
By noon that day, Richard and Oliver we're already at Gotham International Airport. They we're accompanied by Bruce, Diana, Clark, Dinah, Wally, and Zatanna.
"Welp, here we are.", Oliver began.
Bruce nodded in acknowledgement, "Queen, I trust that you'll be able to pull this off."
"Don't sweat it Bruce. We got this." Oliver quipped.
"Just like how you got last week's gala?", Diana rolled her eyes.
"Hey!", Oliver interjected, "That was under very different circumstances! And besides, good ol' Dickie Boy here handled it like a champ!"
"If you consider getting shot at as 'handling it like a champ', then go ahead and knock yourself out.", Dinah countered, sarcasm lacing her words.
Richard and the other youngsters were doing their best to hold back their laughter.
Eventually, Richard decided to bail-out his superior on the mission, "Y'all know that I'd love to gang up on Old Man Ollie as much as the next guy, but we got a plane to catch, no?", he made sure to use his Russian accent as he emphasized the 'no'.
"Yeah the kid's right- OI! WHO YOU CALLIN' OLD YA LI'L SHIT!"
Bruce coughed, "Flight to catch, remember."
Oliver eventually came back to his senses, "Oh yeah right."
As if on cue, the Airport's Intercom announced: "Attention, all passengers on Wayne Airlines Flight WA420 bound for Moscow, the boarding gate is now open. All passengers on Wayne Airlines Flight WA420 bound for Moscow, Russia, the boarding gate is now open."
With that said, the farewell party went off to give their final, well, farewells.
Wally gave his best friend one last bone-crushing hug, "Take care of yourself D, I don't want you dying on me now."
Richard could barely cough out the words he wanted to say, "I-I will Walls, j-just let me go please!"
"Oh! Yeah, right, sorry.", the read-headed speedster scratched his head.
Just as the Boy Wonder was about to seek out his magician girlfriend, he was eventually caught off-guard by a very unexpected fiery liplock.
Wally let out a low whistle and the adults turned away as to give the couple some form of ambient privacy.
"You better not anything stupid Grayson, or I swear to God, I'll have Alfred ready funeral preparations the moment you get back.", Zatanna quipped.
Richard chuckled, "Zee, I swear to you on my life, and whatever humanity I have left in me that Wally has not yet or is yet to be corrupted-"
An audible "HEY!" could be heard from the speedster.
"I won't do anything stupid, nor would I do anything to forsake nor give you the justification needed for you to murder me in my sleep.", Richard continued.
"Always a man of words, Boy Blunder.", Zatanna giggled.
Richard smirked, "You love me for it."
Meanwhile on the adults' side, Oliver was being handed-down one last sermon from America's Richest Man.
"Don't make me regret doing this, Queen.", Bruce began.
Oliver gulped, this sermon was beginning to sound like a final warning, good thing he settled his Last Will and Testament last night.
"I promise you Bruce.", Oliver replied, "We'll do our best, and I'll protect Richard with my life."
A stoic look graced Bruce's face, "You better, and I'm pretty sure you're aware of the consequences if you break that promise, right Queen?"
Once again, Oliver gulped, "I know."
Bruce then went on to his adopted son, "Take care of yourself, m'kay?"
Richard gave him a reassuring smile, "Don't worry Bruce, we got this in the bag."
"It's not a good habit to be overconfident in a mission Dick, but sure, I'll take your word for it.", Bruce responded.
The Boy Wonder was then engulfed in a loving embrace.
"Oh Zeus, please take care of my boy.", Diana spoke.
Richard chuckled, "I'll be fine Dee, I promise, I can take care of myself."
"Oh I know.", Diana replied, "I'm just so very worried about you."
It's not a secret that Diana began doting on Richard the moment she got together with Bruce, one could even say that Diana was the "very overcautiously overprotective" kind of 'mom'.
"Don't worry, I'll make it back.", Richard reassured her, "Watch over Bruce and Alfie while I'm gone, okay?"
Diana smiled, "I will, they're safe with me."
With their farewells said, Oliver went ahead to break the ice, "Sorry to interrupt your little mother-and-son time, but we gotta go. The plane ain't gunna wait for us anytime soon."
Eventually, the group parted ways with the Archer and the Boy Wonder as the duo entered the doors of Gotham International.
"You nervous?", Oliver nudged the Boy Wonder.
"Me? Nah, I just wanna get this shit over with.", Richard replied.
Oliver gave the teen a curious glance, "You don't sound so excited to me."
Richard was never excited when it comes to Russia, even during deployments with the Team to the Motherland, Richard would always show some form of annoyance but refrained from voicing it out.
Besides, Richard had an equation implanted on his head the day he and his parents fled, and that equation's been with him ever since…
Richard + Russia = You Bet Your Ass Something Bad Will Happen.
Granted, that equation could be repurposed into various forms such as:
Richard + Wally = You Bet Your Ass Something Bad Will Happen, but he digresses.
Coming out of his light daze, Richard responded, "Trust me, there's nothing to get excited about. I just want to get this done as soon as we can."
Oliver snorted in agreement, "You and me both kid, you and me both…"
Little to their knowledge, an inconspicuous pair seated within the Airport's Starbucks were actually observing the Archer and the Boy Wonder.
"Recon 1 and Recon 2 to Dispatch.", the first man began, a heavy Russian accent present in his voice, "We have eyes on the target, repeat, eyes on the target."
A voice came out from his earpiece and answer, "Acknowledged Recon 1, maintain visible contact with the duo and continue observance. Home Base will get ready for their arrival."
The man replied, "Copy that Dispatch, Recon 1 and Recon 2, going out."
To Be Continued…
[Letter From The Author:]
Heyoo! So, I know it's been months since I last touched this story, and in all honesty, I kinda did forget about it. I won't lie, with school and schoolwork being a bitch, I lost time to work on my fics and that in itself is already worthy of significant backlash. Eitherway, I can't make any promises but I'll try to do my best and update as much as I can, whenever I can.
I know it ain't much, but your continued support is one of the driving factors pushing me to persevere with my stories.
With that said, I love you all! And I hope to hear from all of you very soon!