[𝙳𝚘𝚛𝚔 𝙺𝚗𝚒𝚐𝚑𝚝]

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February 17th, 2020




Gender: Female
Status: In a relationship
Age: 27
Country: United States

Signup Date:
August 14, 2018


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01/01/2020 07:42 PM 

Rockin' Robin: Drabble

attention: | mentions: Rockin' Robinwww.roleplayer.me/DorkKnight
The red suit.
The green tights.
The yellow cape.
It had been a full week and she could still barely believe that she, Stephanie Brown, Nobody from Nowheresville, Gotham, was Robin.
For realsies, in the Batmobile, beating up bad guys with Batman and Batgirl, ROBIN!
I mean, yeah, sure, she did those things sometimes as Spoiler, but who the heck was Spoiler? Noone. That's who. But now!

"Take five, Robin."

"Huh? Oh. Uh. Sure. Alright Boss! Can do, B-man!"

"And stop humming."

"I can only try!"

Steph beamed as she pushed herself away from the counter top, where they had been running timed drills of matching pairs of fingerprints in forensic slides with a microscope.
By they, it was really Steph running the drills, while Batman chastised her for not being fast enough. Not being Tim. But that didn't bother her. Why?
Tim wasn't the one here in the suit right now, was he?
No.
She was Robin now.
Wandering around the cave, swinging her arms, finally realizing what she had been humming the entire time.
Slowly breaking into a grin, she knew what she had to do.

"I am the one and only, oh yeah~
Call me, call me by my name or call me by number
You put me through it
I'll still be doing it the way I do it-"

Whipping back around to point at the only other visible member in the cave, Batman, the pitchy, purposely annoying voice that would go on to be used over comms for years to come continued.

"-And yet, you try to make me forget
Who I really am, don't tell me I know best
I'm not the same as all the rest-"

Running, and sliding across the floor to the display cases, as if to make a point along with the lyrics, almost pressing her face against the glass for a split second, before shaking her head, shoulders and hips in a wild, ungainly dance, her heavily gelled, spiked hair unmoving.

"Everything doesn't have to be about fear. There's room in our line of work for hope, too."
"-I am the one and only
Nobody I'd rather be
I am the one and only
You can't take that away from me
I've been a player in the crowd scene
A flicker on the big screen
My soul embraces one more in a million faces-"

Turning from the case, melodramatically miming at her face, then to the sky, twirling once.

"-High hopes and aspirations, and years above my station
Maybe but all this time I've tried to walk with dignity and pride
I am the one and only
Nobody I'd rather be
I am the one and only
You can't take that away from me
I can't wear this uniform without some compromises-"

Grasping the cape in both hands and holding it to her, pirouetting before letting the cape go to flare out, motioning to the cases again.

"-Because you'll find out that we come
In different shapes and sizes
No one can be myself like I can
For this job I'm the best man
And while this may be true-"

Running back over to the counter, closing the distance her dancing has caused, slamming her hands down on it, scattering all the forensic slides she had been matching.

"-You are the one and only you-"

Twirling back away, vocalising the guitar solo, playing the most wicked air guitar the Batcave had seen maybe ever, still trying to stubbornly shake her stiff hair.

"-I am the one and only
Nobody I'd rather be
I am the one and only
You can't take that away from me
I am the one and only
Nobody I'd rather be
I am the one and only
You can't take that away from me!"

Finishing her joyous number, shaking her cape untangled from her arm, the Bat who sat unmoving spoke after a beat of silence.

"... are you quite done?"

Lowering her eyes to the scattered slides, Steph sighs slowly.

"... yeah, I'm good."

"Good. Don't sing in the cave. Or the suit. It's not a game, Robin."

Patrol, January 1st, 2020.

"Oh, only you and me available tonight, huh B? That's a real shame… a damn shame. You are, one could say, the one and only..."

"I'm almost fifty percent sure nothing could go wrong."Stephanie Brownwww.roleplayer.me/DorkKnight

12/27/2019 02:52 PM 

Unmarked Letter: Drabble

Unmarked LetterMakeshift Willwww.roleplayer.me/dorkknight
If you are reading this, you have been cleaning out my belt pockets.
I can only assume that means something has happened to me.
If that isn’t the case, if you’ve just happened across this, please, fold this back up, and put it right back where you got it from. Please.
However. If something has happened to me, something… less than pleasant, let’s say, consider this my last will and testament.
‘Oh but Stephanie, you don’t have anything to give to anyone’. Shut up, Damian (I’m guessing it would be that Gremlin that would say anything). I still have wishes. And I didn’t have a chance to do anything about any of it last time.
Assuming I’m dead, and not just, y’know, missing again, or in another coma, I have a few things to get out of the way.
Underneath the carpet in the corner of my bedroom is a loose floorboard. Down in the floor is a duffle of cash from when I worked for Penguin when I was ‘dead’ last time. I kept it in case of emergency. This seems like the right time. Give it to Mom. Tell her what ever you have to to make her accept it.
Also down there are my fake ids. Constance Aberthine is gone now too, so they might as well be burnt.
Spoiler and the Robin suit I made myself are in the top of the closet. It has a hidden cubby hole, you’ll find it. Do whatever with the suits. I won’t be needing them anymore.
Bruce, you told me you’d take care of my daughter. Please. Keep her safe.
Whatever happened, it isn’t your fault. Never was.
Tim, we’ve been through...too much together. Maybe I should write you your own thing. I owe you so much. Keep on going. Or I’ll possess every brick in existence.
Cass, my best friend. Thank you. Without you I would never have even gotten this far. You're the best of us. Bruce, Just give her the Cowl already.
Damian, you little Gremlin sh*t lord. My baby brother. You deserved so much better. Don’t forget the only thing I taught you. How to have fun.
Babs, you saved my life. You let me wear your mantle. I hope I haven’t disappointed you.
Jason, we are far too alike for anyone to be surprised by this. Guess I’m President of the club now. More deaths = higher rank, right? That's how we’re working this? Take care of them for me. Oh, and you know who had anything to do with this… you know what to do.
Harper, I love you like a sister. I’m sorry I wasn't there for you more. I’m a horrible sister. I wish I could have done more to help you and Cullen.
Cullen, sweet, sweet Cullen, the password to my spotify account is Jingle342 you’re welcome.
Harley, you’re gonna have to up the shenanigans in my absence. The recipe for my goop is in that place we talked about that one time. Do with it what you will.
Alfred, I’m sorry that you’re going to be finding glitter around the manor long after I’m gone. The trick is pet rollers. Please make sure they don’t start trying to take this out on each other. Whatever happened. No matter what it was. I was pushing my luck anyway.
D*ck, did you think I forgot about you? Never. You’re gonna have to shine brighter for the both of us now. You can hand that. It’s a lot of weight on your shoulders, but you’ve got the glute strength to support it. I believe in you. Always. I love you.
I don’t want any of you thinking I’m writing this filled with regrets. I only have the one.
That I may not have had the chance to say these things to your faces.
If I am, In fact, not dead, and just, you know, maimed, or comatose again, or whatever, just ... Disregard all the sappy stuff, and keep this on hand incase I die.
Then in act the sappy.
I’m not the best at any of this.
Stephanie Brown

12/14/2019 03:06 PM 

Soft Spot: Drabble

attention: | mentions: Soft Spotwww.roleplayer.me/DorkKnight
"Batgirl, trouble."

"In Little Tokyo? No? Haven't seen that one? It's good. Brandon Lee was in it."

With an exasperated sigh, in which Steph knew Wendy was either hanging her head or pinching the bridge of her nose, there was a pause before Proxy began to speak, wearily.

"Do you ever stop talking? Especially about random sh*t?"

"I was in an alien dream spore coma once."

"Why'd they revive you?"

"They didn't. I fought it and won. Can't get rid of me that easy. What's the problem?"

"Right. Armed hold up in the Heights. Hostages. GCPD can't get in. Your friend Gage is on the scene trying to negotiate but there doesn't seem to be any progress."

"On it…"

It wasn't hard to spot the cordoned off area around the general store, the flashing lights of the patrol cars being used as both barricades and shields in the case of a shoot out, Batgirl slowly sank into a crouch a few rooftops down, and scanned the area, looking out for not only potentially overly enthusiastic reporters trying to get a scoop, but police sharpshooters with vantage points.
Confident she wouldn't be taken out if she went to help, scanning the GCPD clustered around having what seemed to be a meeting of the minds for her man on the inside, as it were, Detective Nick Gage, she whipped a notepad and pen from one of her belt pockets, scribbled a quick message, folded it around a batarang.
Hopping a few rooftops to be closer, the cluster dispersed, returning to what would have been planned positions, she took aim and hit the door of the patrol car to Gages left. Seeing the batarang, Gage grabbed it, looked around and checked the note.

Here to help. Keep attention on you. I'm going in.

By the time he worked out Batgirl would have been above and behind him, she was gone. Working her way across to the back of the general store, shushing the GCPD stationed to watch the backlot, sinking to a crouch, preparing to start working on the lock, she waited to hear Gage talking over the bullhorn again. She didn't care what he was saying, as long as he was keeping the attention on him.
After a few minutes of working her tools, the lock clicked open, and Steph slipped inside, but not before indicating to the patrolmen with a 'watch here' motion, quietly leaving a box in the way to keep the door propped open.
Once inside, she quickly realised the backdoor was the back office and storage area. From here she could see the entire store on the security system. Frowning slightly, she leant in to the monitor to get a better grip on the situation. Two men, armed with shotguns, one on hostage duty, having them all sit with their backs against the freezers, pacing along them at the back of the store, the other pacing back and forward across the front of the store, engaging with Gage, holding one person to him to discourage anyone taking shots at him.
A young girl. Wait…

'Oh, you scumbag. I'm breaking your face six ways to Sunday.'

Steph clenches her jaw and begins to set up her plan.
Crouching low, and scouting her way out of the office to the freezer aisle, picking up a bag of flour along the way.
Seeing one of the hostages before she saw the gunman, being told to sit on his hands on the floor in the frozen goods aisle, she raised a gloved finger to her lips, and offered a small smile. The expression of hope that lit up his face, that seemed to spread down the row, filled Steph with a renewed focus, and sense of purpose. Reeling her flour arm back, she peaked around the freezer cabinets, and let it skid along the ground to a place about five feet from her, before popping back around, listening.

"Hey. Who's playing games? If any one'a ya bastards thinks you're getting outta here I got news for yous."

As the voice grew closer, glancing in the weak, warped reflection of the glass doors, she burst around the corner as her was bent down to pick up the flour, driving her knee into his face, ripping the gun from his unprepared grip, and wrapping her arms around his throat in a very quick, very un-Steph-like guillotine choke.
She would have normally much rather taunted and quipped more, but time and place. She will never tell anyone she can do things professionally, and will deny it until she dies. Again.
Taking the unconscious form to the ground with nary more than a grunt from him being kneed in the face, she motioned for the freed hostages to follow her quietly, leading them to the office door, eyes on the front of the store, the back and forth between Detective Gage and the other dumbass still a background drone to her at this point.
A woman she recognised, Mrs Little, gripped at her arm, whispering frantically.

"I can't go, he has my baby."

"I know. I'm going to get Nell right now, I promise. But I can't focus on that if I'm worried about you too. Please trust me with this."

With an incredibly reluctant nod, and a firmer squeeze to Stephs arm, Mrs Little slowly crept out to inevitably argue with the GCPD about being checked out until her daughter was safely in her arms, leaving Steph to work out just how she was gonna make that happen.

"Everything doesn't have to be about fear. There's room in our line of work for hope, too."
Slowly slipping further into the store, heart pounding in her ears, she decided today was the day to play this by Bruce's rules. She wasn't gonna be able to exactly 'hope' them outta this one.
Time for fear. Sorta.

'God, I hope this works…'

She closes her eyes, takes a long, slow breath, holds it, and exhales.

'What would Cass do?'

With that thought in mind, she pushed onwards, fingers probing for the appropriate tools in her belt for this job. Behind the row of shelving, flicking down her infrared lenses, Batgirl flicked her handful of smoke pellets into the entryway of the store and waited for it to fill, straightening as she heard the startled cry.

"The Bat. F***ing cops! It was all a trick! Stay back you bat bastard, or I'll blow her head off!"

Steph could see the forms whipping around frantically in the smoke, the gun waving around, as he searched in vain for the vigilante. Unable to help herself, as she took a few steps closer, lenses glowing eerily in the smoke, she spoke.

"Oh, so close. A Bat. The big guy hasn't got time for the likes of nobodies like you."

"Batgirl!"

Nell Little, the only hostage left, with her tear streaked face perked up. Cracking a half smile, Steph prepared her next move.

"Hi Nell. Sit tight a second for me, ok?"

Now with the gun leveled at her, where she preferred it to be, Steph bent her knees slightly, preparing to move.

"Shut your mouth, you bat bitch!"

"How about you call your partner for some back up. Oh, right. You can't… I dealt with that already…"

There it was. He slipped. Glancing towards the back of the store and lowering his grip, she beckoned for Nell to run to her. Creating separation between them, Batgirl drew her grapple, fired it, and coiled her line around the girls torso, retracting it, pulling Nell into her body and covering her with as much of herself as possible, as well as the cape, because she knew what was coming.
The gunshot was loud, as was Nell's scream, especially in the store that has been as quiet as a grave until this point. At ten feet out, the spread of buckshot was non existent, which was good for Nell, nice and shielded way, bad for Steph, or more specifically, Steph's back.
Sure, the suits were bullet resistant, but you still feel a shotgun blast at near point blank range.
Grunting, she pushed through. She could deal with pain, split skin, bruising, blood in her suit, whatever later. Nell was still in danger. Pushing out of her coiled crouch, picking up Nell and carrying Nell around behind the row of shelving, she set her down, as she heard the gun rack back another shot.

"When I go back out there, go hide. Don't come out until I say."

Nodding, Nell turned, ready to dart off, as Steph dove across the floor, rolling, creating distance between herself and where Nell would be running before the shot would be fired.
The blast sounded again, the spread catching the tail end of her cape as it followed her dive. She was beginning to understand why they had shotguns for this job. Expert marksmen they were not.

"How many shots did you fire off while getting everyone under control? You've fired two at me. Are you keeping track? You won't wanna reload under pressure… do you even know how to reload?"

Watching him rack it back again, glancing down almost worriedly, she darted to her feet, running at him headlong.
With an almost startled expression, he pointed the barrel at her again.

'Now'

Sidestepping as he pulled the trigger again, continuing to close the gap, teeth clenched as the spray of pellets tore over her shoulder, she was on him.

Snagging the shotgun from his stunned grasp, and driving the butt of the stock sharply into his face, resisting the urge to do so repeatedly, and only driving a foot into his ribs as he hit the floor, unconscious, and bleeding from the face, she slid her lenses back, the smoke mostly dissipated now.

"That was SO COOL! You dodged his bullets! Like a ninja!"

Scowling and whipping around to see Nell peering around the edge of the shelving, she sighed slightly.

"I told you to go hide…"

Smiling sheepishly at Steph, the Batgirl just shook her head and smiled back, moving somewhat gingerly over to her, and crouching.

"C'mon. Let's get you back to your mom. She's worried sick…"

Nell responded by throwing her arms around Steph. Softly squeezing the smaller girl, putting a hand to the back of her head, Steph carried Nell outside.
The second Mrs Little saw Batgirl carrying Nell, she charged past the police line, and threw her arms around both of them, sobbing. It took everything Steph had to not yelp in pain.

"Told you I'd get her out for you…"

She manages to say softly, to a peel of laughter from all of them.

"How am I ever meant to thank you?"

Steph just shakes her head.

"Just doing my job…"

Smiling as she watched Nell and her mother finally giving in, and allowing themselves to be checked out by the paramedics on scene, there was a tap on her shoulder.

"This belongs to you…"

Nick Gage drops the batarang between his fingers into her grasp, with an exhausted smile.

"Oh yeah. Thanks for keeping him busy. Totally helped."

"Thanks for making sure no-one got shot. I didn't need that paperwork."

"What makes you think no-one got shot? Bats don't count on your paperwork anyway."

She grinned at the confusion, then realization spreading across his face, firing her grapple off, and saluting a goodbye, before whimpering in pain once she was out of ear shot.

"I'm almost fifty percent sure nothing could go wrong."Stephanie Brownwww.roleplayer.me/DorkKnight

12/13/2019 07:54 PM 

Christmas Rush: Drabble

attention: | mentions: Holiday Rushwww.roleplayer.me/DorkKnight
"Hey, dweeb."

Shifting her attention from the stacks of library books she had been sorting through, attention grabbed by the familiar voice of Jordanna calling her 'Dweeb', because who else would she be referring to, Steph raised both brows expectantly.

"What are you doing after class?"

The brunette picks up one of the unsorted books on the counter, looks it over disinterestedly, and sets it back down, before leaning on the countertop.

"Well… I was gonna go home… why, what do you want?"

"You're coming Christmas shopping with me. I'm gonna need help picking things, and carrying stuff."

After a pause, the haughty air evaporates for a second while Jordanna straightened up, turning to leave.

"Besides, you won't just say whatever to get us out of there faster like other people. So… there's that. Meet me at Killingers."

Shaking her head, and returning to the sorting and reshelving, Steph half smiles.

"Alright, Jor, Killingers… you got it…"

The rest of her classes went without issue, no accidental naps or coffee spills. Once free of the study day, and having safely crossed the slick student parking lot in her beat up sneakers with little to no tread left on them without eating a faceful of asphalt, she threw the bags inside and drove at a totally reasonable, not at all infuriating speed on the icy Gotham roads, drumming her fingers on the steering wheel in time with her music.
Eventually, she pulled into the Killingers parking lot. Taking her messenger bag, leaving the book bag behind, Steph locked up after herself, and made her way inside, checking her phone, to see three messages from Jordanna.

'Traffic has been the worst, I'm getting here now. I need coffee, stat.'

'I bet you're in the same boat.'

'I'm in the third floor food court.'

Responding with smiling emoji, Steph set off, weaving through the bustling Gothamites all with the same idea as Jordanna. In the back of her mind, Steph started counted exits, keeping track of the nearest one, and eyeing off potential weapons, in the event of an emergency, should the occasion arise, and she inevitably run headlong into trouble.
Spotting her friend seated at a table sipping from a cup well before Jordanna noticed Steph moving towards her, Jordanna pushed out the opposite seat with her foot, nudging the other cup and plate with custard filled donut towards it.

"Everything doesn't have to be about fear. There's room in our line of work for hope, too."
Dropping into it with a slight frown, Jordanna responded to Steph's puzzled expression.

"Don't make a big deal of it. It's a thank you. For today, and, you know. Everything. I only ever see you eating sweet things, so… I thought it would fit."

"No no, it fits. You don't have to thank me, though."

Jordanna shook her head and spoke into her cup.

"Yeah I do… I don't know if you noticed, but I didn't exactly go out of my way to make life easy for you…"

Waving her hand and taking a bite of the donut, Steph talks with pastry stuffed into her cheek, covering her mouth with her hand.

"Nah, don't even worry. It's how it goes with me. I'm a pain in the ass, people don't like me, then they eventually warm up to me for whatever reason. No stress."

"Well, in my experience, you drop everything to help people, even when they've done nothing but be a**holes to you."

Steph shrugs and sips the coffee, growing increasingly uncomfortable with how close to home this conversation was hitting, decided to change topic.

"So who are you shopping for today, anyway?"

"Oh, I need help working out what to get… Francisco…"

The brunette starts flushing slightly, causing the blonde the start grinning widely.

"Are you officially a thing then?"

"I- Maybe? It's hard to say…"

Getting to her feet, holding her coffee and popping the last of the custard donut in her mouth, scowling slightly, Steph says thickly

"How is that hard to say? You just say 'hey, are you my boyfriend or not'."

"It's not that easy, Stephanie…"

Jordanna whines, getting to her feet and taking the lead in guiding them from store to store.

"I dunno. Don't make me do it. Because I'll do it in the most embarrassing way for the both of you."

"Can we not? Please? Hey, do you need to do any Christmas shopping?"

Steph knew it was an attempt to change the topic. Rolling her eyes slightly, tucking her free hand into her pocket, and taking a sip from her coffee, she shrugged a shoulder.

"Nah, my stuff is all done. I make most of mine. Anything I don't make is a gag gift anyway."

"Oh, right! Because you're totally in with like, the first family of Gotham. What's that like anyway?"

Snorting a laugh, she wished she could tell the truth, just for the look on Jordanna's face. It would be priceless. Instead, a diplomatic answer.

"The Waynes just people, Jor. Nothing different about them."

"Yeah, aside from money, and good looks! Um, hello, you're dating one of them."

"Yeah, but there's more to him than just good looks or any money… come on now…"

Jordanna looked at Steph for a solid thirty second beat before breaking into a grin.

"But that booty though."

"Oh god, that booty though…"

Steph responds reflexively, with a devilish grin of her own, before burying her face into her coffee, Jordanna laughing.

"Stephanie Brown, you're allowed to thirst for your own boyfriend."

Snorting a laugh, almost choking on the coffee, Steph doubled over for a good two minutes before regaining a form of composure.

"I think I have an idea for you on what to get Francisco…"

"Oh god, I'm scared now…"

"Nahhh, it'll be fine… if it helps, it's part of what I got D*ck for Christmas too…"

"... I'm both scared, and intrigued…" Steph only grins wider, and takes the lead.

"I'm almost fifty percent sure nothing could go wrong."Stephanie Brownwww.roleplayer.me/DorkKnight

12/04/2019 02:23 PM 

The Lights: Drabble

attention: | mentions: The Bright Knight The Lightswww.roleplayer.me/DorkKnight
Christmas time in Gotham. Less sunlight, longer, darker nights, colder winds, slick roofs and City hung decorations on every building to watch out for on patrol.
It was always fun.
And that was genuine, that wasn't sarcastic in the least.
It might have seemed it, but Steph genuinely enjoyed the extra challenges December brought.
But today's Christmasy challenge wasn't 'Can Batgirl navigate the reindeer she didn't know were hung up along this stretch of street without breaking her neck and losing the  grapple' or 'How many rooftops can Batgirl run before hits an ice slick she didn't spot', no, today's challenge was 'Can Dork Supreme Stephanie Brown get through the tree lighting ceremony without making an ass of herself'.
A mighty challenge indeed.
The plan was to meet one Richard Grayson there, look at the lights, see the sights, and if all went well, she wouldn't turn into a pumpkin when the clock struck midnight.
Throwing her messenger bag into the passenger seat of the Compact, she set off for the meet up.
With streets shut down to street traffic for several blocks in every direction around City Hall, for 'security', after many years of tree lighting mishaps, finding a park was a bit of a chore, honestly, she could have done the ol' rooftop hop in her civvies and gotten around faster at this rate, but eventually, the Compact was parked.
Shooting herself a final look in the rearview mirror, adjusting her purple (what other color would it be?) knit cap on her loose waves, scooped up the bag, got out of the car, locked her baby up, armed the security, then the security, adjusted her jacket, and started her two block trek to meet up with her date.
It wasn't long before she found him. Or rather, he spotted her first, waving her over with a warm grin, holding two coffee cups.

"Please tell me you wore the purple hat to make it easy to spot you."

With a grin of her own Steph shrugged.

"Sure. Let's go with that."

Shaking his head slightly and passing her one of the cups, he retorts.

"You're a disaster. How much purple do you own? Even the car, Steph. Even the CAR! That was hot chocolate, by the way, might just be chocolate now…"

Poking his chest lightly, turning to start moving towards the City Hall steps, she mock pouted.

"One, not enough purple. I need more purple. I don't have enough. Two, Bruce got the car. The car being purple was on him, not me. Blame him. Three, don't throw stones about colors when you live in a glass house, Little Boy Blue…"

Taking a sip from the cup she grinned at him.

"Hot or no, chocolate is chocolate… thank you."

Acting as if the poke was a stab, falling in step next to her, holding his chest, he gasped exaggeratedly, then laughed.

"You're welcome, Blondie. But if you show up next time in all purple I'm going home."

Raising a brow at the statement, a half smirk on her lips, she shook her head, not wanting to bring up the Spoiler suit, instead, she looked ahead, towards the top of the tree that would soon be lit.

"Ten bucks says a rogue crashes the party…"

Shaking his head slightly, he nudged her.

"Just because it's a public gathering in Gotham doesn't mean something bad is going to happen. Have a little faith."

"Is this how I usually sound? Sunshine and positivity? Man it's weird being the downer."

She grimaced, before raising both brows and pointing with her cup.

"Still. Ten bucks. Happens every year."

"If it happens. IF! We're already here. So it's win-win either way."

Grinning at her, draping an arm over her shoulders, causing her to shake her head and grin into her cup.
Up ahead of them, a troupe of performers clad in various states of mixed red, white and green made their way across the stairs, their makeshift stage, to get into position, microphones in hand, one figure in all green, with dashes of purple slid across behind them.
Straightening her relaxed posture, frowning, and tapping her date on the chest, who had followed her movements, already following the train of thought, they were ready when The Riddler snagged one of the performers from behind, cane across their throat, gun in hand, snatching up the mic.

"I come with many colors, so beautiful and bright, I turn so many houses into a beautiful sight. What am I?"

"Ha! Told you! ….Dammit!"

"Everything doesn't have to be about fear. There's room in our line of work for hope, too."
Steph quickly went from jubilation from being right, to being annoyed that she had to work and didn't have time to change to her suit. Huffing, setting her cocoa down on the ground, surely to be lost forever to trampling, she unrolled the lip of her knit cap and pulled it down over her head, revealing it was a ski mask in disguise. Reaching into her bag, and fumbling around in the belt pouches for a moment, she flicked him the grapple, and snapped out her bo staff. With a casual 'what can you do about it' shrug, Grayson reached into the inner pocket of his jacket, pulled out a domino mask and put it on, zipped up his jacket, caught the grapple, and took to the air, while Steph used the staff to vault over a fleeing crowd.

"Do you even try anymore Eddie? The answer is lights!"

She yelled as she got to the stairs, the barrel of the gun now levelled at her, over the poor terrified performer.
Good. Steph could handle that.

"Oh. It's You. Don't you have other things to go spoil?"

Riddler hissed, immediately recognising the blonde and purple. (OK, so maybe there was a small flaw in the plan.)

"In a shocking turn of events, Eddie, today, you're spoiling things. Aren't you meant to be rehabilitated?"

From the roof of Town Hall, a well aimed snowball collided with the back of Nygma's head, followed by a cheery voice.

"I've got one for you. What's green, distracted, and black and blue all over?"

As Riddler whipped around to find the voice, almost waving the gun wildly now, Steph slipped in, grabbing the performers arm and pulled, twisting to put herself between them and Edward should he redirect his focus again, as her partner in crime (fighting) dropped feet first onto Riddler's shoulders. Seeing the opportunity, sweeping his legs with the staff, ensuring Nygma would hit the ground, pinned, motioning for the performer to make a break for the on coming GCPD, she grinned as Grayson batted the gun away, and motioned for something to restrain him with.

"Oh, I think I know this one too! Riddler, right?"

Fishing out the zipties kept in one of the belt pouches, and tossing them to Grayson, she quickly scouted the crowd for an estimate on the timeframe they had to work with, seeing the performer being briefly comforted by Commissioner Gordon, who was directing GCPD, and barking orders.

"Got it in one. Time to go…"

Straightening up, moving over and looping his arm around Stephs waist, firing her grapple off at the roof, to make their getaway before the GCPD could collect Eddie.
Stuffing her ski mask into her bag before they rejoined the crowds, his domino mask safely stashed away again, they watched as Commissioner Gordon now stood on the stairs, stoney faced, mic in hand.

"Just one year I'd like this to go off without a hitch. The song and dance routine isn't going forward, and we aren't rescheduling so another manic can try again. So. Just me this year."

With an almost apologetic shrug, he sat down the microphone, as a medley of Christmas carols started up over the loudspeakers, and Gordon pressed the oversized button with an awkward pause. After a moment, the lights flickered to life, from the bottom of the sixth foot tree to the top, finishing with the star at the top, twinkling brightly.
D*ck wrapped both arms around Steph from behind, resting his chin on the top of her head, she held onto his arms, smiling softly.

"You still owe me ten bucks though…"

She mutters.

"I'm almost fifty percent sure nothing could go wrong."Stephanie Brownwww.roleplayer.me/DorkKnight

11/28/2019 05:10 PM 

A Brown Thanksgiving: Drabble

attention: | mentions: A Brown Thanksgivingwww.roleplayer.me/DorkKnight
The holidays were never really a big deal for Steph. She understood what they were meant to mean, but with Arthur in and out of prison all the time, and up until a few years ago, Crystal in and out of stupors, being forced into rehab and then working all the time (holidays always were busy for the medical field), Thanksgiving was never really a thing for the Browns.
Alfred had made it clear to Stephanie a while back that she was always welcome to join them at the manor, and usually she just hid out, laid low, patrolled instead. But this year she had other ideas.
Crystal was on call, of course. And Steph was going to take her something to eat. With Alfreds help. Because God knows Steph couldn't cook to save her life.
Slipping into the kitchen, through the back door of the manor, instead of her usual creep in through the cave, looking over the workstation Alfred had turned into the island countertop,  she frowned slightly.

"How much food do you think we're going to need, Al..?"

Steph asked softly, as the Butler dropped an apron over her head and motioned to the sink, for her to wash her hands.

"I wanted you to have options. I don't know what your mother likes to eat, and judging by the wording of your message, you wouldn't mind the chance to learn more about cooking either."

With no remarks to make back for once in her life, Steph tied the apron, washed her hands, and took up place next to Alfred at the counter.

"What's first, boss?"

Raising a slight brow at her words, but smiling faintly, Alfred passed Stephanie a bag containing green beans.

"Top and tail these, if you would, Miss Brown."

Steph looked at him in mild puzzlement, for Alfred to point at the stem and pointed tails.

"Cut those parts off. Then give the beans a rinse."

"Got it."

With the same determination she went about everything in life, Steph set about fixing the green beans. After a few moments of cutting in silence, in which Alfred was heating pants, she speaks up.

"Does it matter that they aren't all the same length?"

"Not at all, no. Some people might trim them all to be the same, but that would waste a lot of food."

Nodding as she moved to wash the beans, and set them back down on the cutting board, Alfred set about putting out the other vegetables for her to prepare, while looking between the meats.

"Which do you think she would prefer?"

"Is chicken an option?"

"Of course.

"Go with chicken. I don't think I've seen Mom eat red meat in forever… and Turkey is too much…"

With a nod, Alfred set about filleting and butterflying the chicken breast, before laying plastic wrap over it, rolling it flat.

"Whoa, what are you gonna do with the chicken, Al? I mean, like, slow down, I wanna know…"

Steph sets down the sprout she was in the middle of running over the mandolin slicer.

"I'm going to make a roulade, and stuff it with the same stuffing the turkey has. So it will almost be like a whole Thanksgiving meal, but not quite."

Unsure what to say, Steph nodded, clearing her throat, and went back to slicing her sprouts.
It wasn't long before everything was ready for the pans, and Alfred was on Steph watch, who was on pan watch.
Every time she moved to touch them before it was time, there was a tutting, and she would sulk into her tea.
Steph didn't quite have the patience necessary for cooking.
She did, however, clean up after them very quickly, in her impatience, dishes done, bench wiped down, everything dried and put away, much to Alfreds insistence it didn't need to be done.

A timer that had been set, somewhere, that Steph didn't even know about, went off, startling her from her sulking about waiting for things to do. As Alfred got to his feet, Steph followed him to the cabinet.

"You may borrow some plates. But make sure they return, or I'm taking it out of your hide, Miss Stephanie."

Staring at him for a moment, she finally cracked, and hugged him, squeezing with all her surprising might.

"Thank you Alfred. For everything. You didn't have to do any of this…"

Hugging back for a moment, patting her back, he cleared his throat.

"None of us have to do anything, but we do, because we care."

She let go, nodding her head, wiping her face in her sleeves, and pointed at two terracotta, blue plates that looked like they had never seen the light of day.

"I think I'm picking up what you're putting down, Al… those ones…"

"Very well. Let's get this ready then, shall we? And the invitation still stands. You can come back after you've eaten with your mother. I could always use the extra set of hands in the kitchen."

"Oh, I dunno… maybe…"

Carefully boxing everything up, and setting it into a picnic basket, along with some non alcoholic apple cider that had been picked out, the plates, cutlery, and glasses, Steph was ready to go. With one last thank you hug, she set off for the hospital.

"Everything doesn't have to be about fear. There's room in our line of work for hope, too."
At this point, it was easy for her to get onto the ward, with or without ID.
Waving at Crystal from the end of the ward silently, the patients all eating their meals by this time of evening, she raised the basket, and pointed to it, beaming, Crystal frowning in confusion. Holding up five fingers, which Steph took as '5 minutes', she went and leant against the wall, to be out of the way.
A very frazzled looking Crystal soon came to join her daughter.

"What are you doing down here? I thought you'd be… working?"

"Maybe later. I thought I'd bring you some food."

Steph wiggled the basket, cutlery, glasses and plates clicking together inside. Crystal ran a hand through her cropped hair.

"I've got time for a break…"

Leading Steph to the staff break room, Steph grinning from ear to ear as she started to unpack the basket of goodies.

"Did you make this?"

Crystal asked, cracking open the box containing the sliced sauteed sprouts, onion and bacon, as Steph started carving the roulade.

"I helped… I cut up stuff, but that was about it really. A friend did all the heavy lifting here."

"Stephie, you didn't have to…"

"I know… but we've never done anything for Thanksgiving. Like, ever. So…"

Crystal was silent as she thought about it, then nodded.

"You're right, we never have… well-"

Raising her glass of cider

"-I'm thankful for how my daughter turned out, despite, no, in spite of her parents."

Stalling for a moment, Steph raised her own glass, lightly touching it to Crystals.

"I'm thankful for friends and family… is that lame? I feel like that's lame…"

Both Brown women laugh, drinking to their thanks.

"We should take a picture!"

Steph chirps out of the blue, jumping to her feet, and rushing around behind Crystal, taking out her phone.

"Wh-Steph, I look exhausted!"

"Psh, so do I. It's fine. We need something for our first Thanksgiving."

Looping her arm around her mother's shoulder and mooshing her cheek against Crystals, beaming widely, she held up the front facing camera, poking her mother's other cheek.

"Smileeeeee"

Before snapping a series of pictures, as they both laughed.

Returning to her seat, she sent the worst one to her mother, grinning deviously at her.

"You've never looked better, Mom…"

"You're a sh*t, Stephanie Brown…"

"I know."

She sent the best one to Alfred, with a two word message; 'Thank you'

"I'm almost fifty percent sure nothing could go wrong."Stephanie Brownwww.roleplayer.me/DorkKnight

11/25/2019 01:59 PM 

Grave Side: Drabble

attention:  | mentions:  Grave Sidewww.roleplayer.me/DorkKnight
Stephanie Brown.
Technically, she was dead. She had died, rather, and quite painfully at that, but thanks to the wonders of modern medicine, Dr Leslie Thompkins made sure it didn't stay that way.
There was, in her opinion, an unwarranted memorial among the people who had died over those weeks of sheer pandemonium she had quite selfishly caused trying to prove a point, an obituary that was published in the damn newspaper, and was now eternally immortalised in the digital archives, and even a whole grave.
She had visited the memorial, and seen the obituary, but to this point, had avoided looking at the grave itself.
How are you meant to process that? Looking at a headstone with the date you died permanently carved on it, but not really, because you weren't buried and you didn't get dropped in the Lazarus Pit so it's not counted as a real death like Jason, or Damians.
It felt real enough to her. Unlike her fellow Dead Robins club members, she still has to deal with the physical ramifications of being tortured to death.
But as she sat there, gripping the steering wheel of the Compact, staring out at the immaculately kept lawns of the cemetery, perfect rows of headstones stretching for eternities, knuckles aching, trying to use the anger of her death being 'invalid' as a reason to not get out of the car. To sit, steam, and make excuses for herself. To not go see the last marker of her mistakes on this self styled, half assed attempt to come to terms with… something. Her mistakes? Repercussions? Her mortality?
At this point, she really didn't know why she was doing this to herself, but her unusually hard head was what got her a tombstone with her name on it in the first place, and drove a good 80% of her life choices, so it was almost poetic, really that it would bring her to see it.
Letting out a long, slow, almost measured sigh, relinquishing her vise grip on the wheel, to slump back momentarily, pout, catch sight of herself in the rear view mirror and lean into the back seat to fish around for her jacket, run a hand through her loose waves, and step out of the purple Mini.
Hands deep in her pockets as she wandered through the rows of tombstones, looking for her own name, idly musing over some of the more interesting names that caught her eye as she went, bowing her head in respect as she passed their final resting places.
She was surprised when she finally found the tombstone.
It sat as one of a few atop a small hill in the cemetery, with what would have been a really rather nice view, down to the pond and the weeping willows.
Kneeling down, and lightly tracing her fingers across the lettering that made up the name, her name, she gingerly picked up the dried, withered wreath of… there was no was for her to tell what they were now, brushing the decaying petals from the glossy surface of the marble head stone, before sinking back on her haunches.
"Everything doesn't have to be about fear. There's room in our line of work for hope, too."
“It’s been a good long time since this young lady had any visitors… two years, I’d say….”

A voice behind her caused her to spring back to standing, and whip around, crushing the dried floral remains in the process, and the owner of the voice to laugh good naturedly.

“Sorry, I didn’t mean to startle you… I just, don’t get a lot of live company…”

Letting out a nervous chuckle of her own, Steph looked back to the headstone, and brushed her hands absently on the sides of her legs. Time frame checked out. She ‘came back from the dead’ around then.

“Two years, huh? Do you remember all the… uh.. residents, or-”

Lifting the brim of his hat to scratch at his forehead absently, the older man shook his head slightly.

“This one sticks out… Small funeral, I’d say about fifteen people or so, including myself and the preacher giving his farewell, and Bruce Wayne of all people-”

Stephanie frowned slightly, folding her arms across herself, shifting uncomfortably.

“I can see why that would stick out. Not everyday you find a billionaire walking around the graves, huh?”

With a nod, ushering her in closer and lowering his voice, even though they were the only living souls in sight. Wearily taking the step closer, he continued.

“I found out later that week she was one of the masked vigilantes. They said she was Robin. Can you believe that?!”

Raising her brows to feign surprise, Steph then frowned slightly.

“Did ya ever see Batman or Robin, you know, the one that took over after her, out here?”

To her surprise, he nodded, adjusting his hat.

“Once. The year after she went under, to the day. Mostly saw the scary Batgirl though. A few times.”

Cass…
Swallowing hard, Steph lowered her rapidly welling eyes to his shoes, nodding, responding thickly.

“S’neat…”

Awkwardly patting her on the shoulder, he motioned to the grave.

“I didn’t mean to interrupt, though, please, go back to spending time with your friend…”

Giving a watery smile and nod in response, the blonde slowly shuffled back to the head stone, resting her hand on the impeccably carved marble surface and sinking back down. As she looked at the dark reflection of herself in the polished surface, watching the groundskeeper toddle off about his business, a million questions began popping up in her mind. Taking out her phone, she called Crystal. As her mother picked up, without even waiting for a greeting, she fired off the first, burning question.

“Hey, mom? Who paid for my funeral? This is a really nice headstone…”

“Wh-Steph-I- Are you at the cemetary right now?”

“Mmhm. Who paid for it.”

“I don’t know, Stephie, I went into the funeral home to try to start organising things, and it had already been taken care of. I assumed maybe it was part of that secret government contract your father was a part of…”

“Hm. I dunno about that one… thanks, mom.”

Hanging up before she could respond, the ‘problem being solved’ frown set across Stephs features, she made another call.
This time to Leslie, who picked up on the second ring.

“Stephanie?”

“Hi, no need to panic, just some questions. Question one. Did you pay for my funeral, and question two. How much money did you blow burying an empty casket?”

After a pause, sigh, and some shuffling Steph could only interpret as Leslie moving to her office.

“I’m surprised this hasn’t come up earlier… Yes, I paid for it. And the casket isn't empty. It has the body I showed Bruce.”

Immediately looking down to the grass beneath her feet, Steph was silent for a moment.

“You, uh. You wanna run that by me again, Doc?”

“I got the body of an overdose victim that looked similar enough as a horribly beaten and broken you that would pass as you, showed her on the autopsy table in your place, and she got buried.”

“Under my name. Leslie! What if she has family looking for her! What if she has a kid out there thinking mommy might come home someday?! No! We gotta dig her up. Give her her name back. Get her to her family.”

After a pause, Leslie sighs heavily.

“That’s going to be so much paperwork…”

“You did it, undo it! I’m gonna do my part of being legally alive. I might not be the greatest detective around, but I know a few tricks…”

Ending the call, she spoke to the ground, to the woman in her casket.

“I’m so sorry… I’ll get you your name back, at the very least. But until then, your next visitor won’t be two years down the line, I promise…”

She was back the next day with a small bouquet of Purple Hyacinth to lay at the base of the headstone.

"I'm almost fifty percent sure nothing could go wrong."Stephanie Brownwww.roleplayer.me/DorkKnight

11/21/2019 12:11 PM 

Friend Files: Booster Gold

attention: | mentions: Booster Gold Friend Files: Booster Goldwww.roleplayer.me/DorkKnight
Have you ever wondered what it's like to have a Bat as a friend? No, not a bat, the animal, a Bat, capital B, with the cape, and cowl. Well, strap in friends, while we go in this overprotective ride together.
The Bat in question is one Stephanie Brown. One might think her the least intense of the Bats, and upon first inspection, you might be right.
Might being the operative word in that sentence.
On the surface, she is carefree, bubbly, and sunshine. But underneath, she fixates.
How else do you think she wormed her way into the Batfamily? It wasn't because she had the skills of the others, believe you me.
She is, however, devoted, driven, and caring. When you are one of the people she considers a friend, whether you return the sentiment or not, you cannot shake her. She is going to go out of her way to make sure you are living your best life, and if you aren't, she'll fix it, come hell or high water.
You're stuck with the kindest human equivalent of mould you could get.
Try as you might, she will always be there, she will not go away.
You could literally beat her senseless and she would come back the next day, and do anything for you. Some have.
Is it deep seated problems she needs to get seen to?
Most likely. But that's not what we're here for.
We're here to see which one of her friends is going to be forced into living their best lives.
Michael Jon Carter, fellow Gothamite, however from a little further down the line originally, was the poor sap this time.
It's always easier to poke around in friends lives when they're other supers, honestly, thanks to Bruce, and his paranoia.
Brother Eye did the watching for her, she just… occasionally used it for personal reasons.
She was concerned, ok, shut up.
It was almost entirely out of character how low he had been laying though, until he had started talking to a reporter.
Looking over the stills from the dinner dates, she nodded in appreciation. Steph wasn't blind, after all.

"Oooh-hooh, Allison, huh. You sly dog... get it, Boost."

However. In her totally not creepy at all, she's just being a concerned and interested friend, from a distance, monitoring of the developing, or rather, stop starting of what should be a developing relationship, Stephanie decided it was time to get involved.
Tinkerbell needed a talking to, stat. Skeets could only pep talk so much, and she was fairly sure romance wasn't in his subdrivers, or whatever technobabble was applicable to 25th century drone sidekicks. She was dust in their time. She knew what she must do.

"Everything doesn't have to be about fear. There's room in our line of work for hope, too."
By the time Michael shuffled into his apartment, flicked on the light, shut the door behind him and turned around, he noticed something was off about his space.
Perched on the arm of the couch, hunched under the cape, tuft of blonde poking out under the back of the cowl, white lenses illuminated, staring directly at him. It might have been intimidating, had she have been the originator of the pose, and not a 5'5", 120 odd pound woman, who, upon the initial flicker of a startled expression across burst into a fit of giggles and almost fell backwards off the arm of the chair, having to unfold herself quickly to stop it, which, frankly, looked ridiculous.
Like a black and purple gargoyle exploding into flailing limbs.

"You should have seen your face!"

She eventually wheezes out, getting to her feet. Unamused, setting his belongings down, Michael shook his head and crossed to the kitchen.

"To what do I owe the pleasure of this break in, Steph?"

Tailing him, and sliding the lenses of the cowl up and away, to her preferred open eye state, she leant against the bench behind him, as he hunted through the refrigerator for… something? a reason to not have to look at the cowl wearing intruder, maybe?
Never one to beat around the bush, Stephanie, resting her hands against her small of her back jumps straight to the point.

"So, why aren't you just, like, getting with Allison?"

THUD
Jerking his head in surprise at her words, and meeting the inside of the fridge with the top of his head as he whipped around to look at her, almost bewildered, Michael frowns.

"How-"

He doesn't even finish the question. Stephanie was already indicating to the pointed ears of her cowl, eyebrows raised, smiling faintly.

"-right. Bat. I forget that it's not just Him that knows everything."

"I'm not arrogant enough to say I know everything. Just the stuff I want to know. So. Spill. What's the issue. She got weird B.O or something?"

"What? No! She's… amazing. We'd be great together. I just… can't."

Staring at him blankly for a moment, Stephanie tilts her head to the side, making sure she registered what she heard correctly, straightened up, and let out a heavy sigh.

"I see. This is one of those 'Oh no, love hurts, I don't want to get hurt' things, isn't it?"

She may not have been the world's greatest detective, or even top 5 in the Batfam, but she knew enough about egos.

"I swear to go- Tinkerbell. You go to that woman right now, and you tell her that you want to give it a shot. I saw the pictures. You two were so damn happy. People deserve happiness.-"

Seeing him open his mouth to start to protest she closed the gap in the kitchen in a stride, and swatted him on the forehead.

"- No backtalk, respect your elders, future boy. Even people who think they don't deserve happiness, deserve happiness. Even the people who think, with all the mistakes they've made, all the monumental f*** ups they've made, and people who have gotten hurt because of them, deserve to be happy. Because you aren't your mistakes. They don't define you, Boost."

She started fiery, like she could punch him for thinking he didn't deserve to be happy, but softened as she went, resting her hand on his shoulder and giving it a squeeze.

"Besides. If you don't do something about it, I will."

"I'm almost fifty percent sure nothing could go wrong."Stephanie Brownwww.roleplayer.me/DorkKnight

11/19/2019 07:32 PM 

Very Bad Day: Drabble

attention: | mentions: Very Bad Daywww.roleplayer.me/DorkKnight
Stephanie Brown was having an outright no good, awful, very bad day.
To start with, she hadn't slept for going on three days, on top of her already atrocious sleep schedule, some Uptown yuppie in their fancy new Lexus Mommy or Daddy bought them, cut her off pulling into the college parking lot, causing her to slam on her breaks so hard both her undone bags (book bag, and suit bag) got scattered to the four winds around the interior of the Compact, which took a good twenty minutes to try to recover (couldn't leave half a batsuit just laying in the backseat, after all), making her late to class.
She ended up wearing not one, but two jumbo lattes from the campus diner after two repeat max level dork performances, leaving her not only mildly damp, uncomfortable, and smelling like the bullpen of the GCPD, however grateful to be unharmed, and thankful she wore so many layers, but also under caffeinated.
Steph also dropped her sandwich the very second she unwrapped it.
She emailed her essays to the wrong professors, which was easily fixed, but embarrassing enough to make her want to curl up under her desk and die. Again.

"Hey, Freakazoid. Your phone. It's been ringing for the last five minutes…"

Jordanna lightly taps Steph on her shoulder, jolting her from her semi dozing state, glazed eyes fixed on a point out the library windows. Straightening up, rubbing the bridge of her nose with two fingers under the glasses she didn't need but occasionally wore to focus, or on jobs as Constance, she lazily reached for the face down, buzzing, perma-silent phone. Gazing at the screen, and seeing Calling: Eye in the Sky she sighed slowly, got up, and answered the phone, wandering a little bit away, waving a 'one minute' motion to Jordanna.

"Everything doesn't have to be about fear. There's room in our line of work for hope, too."
"About time you picked up."

As soon as the phone was to her ear. Sighing, Steph pulled her shirts away from herself for the umpteeth time.

"I'm at school, Babs, what is it?"

"Aaron Black escaped Blackgate half an hour ago."

"WHAT?!"

Stephanie was already moving back to pack up her stuff, Jordanna looking on in confusion.

"B didn't want me to tell you, but-"

"Of course he didn't. I’ll be out in ten. You think A.P Gordon can cover for me?"

"Yeah, I got you."

Steph hung up, moving out of the library at speed, leaving Jordanna behind, confused.

True to her word, Batgirl was out and on the prowl for Cluemaster, hitting his old haunts, old buddies, old everything, she paused, hit with a realisation.
Heading home, as quickly as she could, she climbed through her bedroom window, to see Cluemaster already restrained on the floor, unconscious, she noted, with the Bat standing over him.

"You took your time."

"I didn't think he'd be stupid enough to try the house…"

"He wants to hurt you, of course he'd be here, to get you, either through your mother, or directly."

"Yeah, well, lucky he didn't know the schedules, I guess. Moms on days this quarter."

Steph was too tired to even be angry at her father. Flopping to sit on her bed, pulling the cowl from her head, she sighed slowly, the unmoving gaze of the Bat on her.

"You're off patrol tonight. You're in no shape for anything."

"Yeah, ok Boomer..."

"I'm almost fifty percent sure nothing could go wrong."Stephanie Brownwww.roleplayer.me/DorkKnight

11/09/2019 04:29 PM 

Meetings: Drabble

attention: | mentions: Meetingswww.roleplayer.me/DorkKnight
Smoothing the legs of her pants for what felt like the millionth time, Steph tucked her hair behind her ear, glanced up to the wing mirror, scowled, and untucked it again quickly.
This pattern had been happening for roughly the last five minutes, while they sat in the Compact, waiting at the park for Lea and her mother, Mrs Jacobs to arrive.
Shifting to adjust the collar of her jacket now, Tim lightly grabbed one of her wrists from the passenger seat.

"For the last time, Steph. You look great. Calm down. Take a breath. Relax."

Shooting him a look they both knew meant that there was no way in hell she was even capable of relaxing, she shifted her gaze to his hand, put her free hand on his, squeezing lightly, turning to face the park again, before shifting from her slightly stiff, however leaning back posture to bolt upright, as she spotted a small blonde girl in a costume she had become very familiar with since being sent the first letter running into the park, cape flapping behind her.
Lea's Robin costume.

"Oh my god. That's her. Tim. That's her. Oh this is happening. This is actually happening. Oh my god. Ohmygodohmygodohmygod."

"Hey, look at me…"

Almost reluctantly turning her head to face him, frowning slightly, Tim gently cupped her cheek, caressing it with his thumb.

"You've fought Superboy, taken on mind controlled Birds of Prey and routinely tell Batman where to shove it. You got this. Go talk to your daughter."

Pressing his lips to her forehead, she let out a nervous, reflexive chuckle, and pushed open the door, to notice that Lea, and her mother, Mrs Jacobs, a woman in her mid to late thirties, in a very nice sweater and slacks had spotted the very conspicuous purple Mini Cooper, Lea pointing at it.

"Hold up a sec. Don't forget the goodie bag…"

Tim leant into the back, and passed out a multicolored gift bag from the back seat. With an appreciative smile, Steph frowned slightly, tilting her head.

"You're not joining us?"

"You want me to?"

"Duh! I asked you to come for a reason! Get out of the car, nerd!"

"Geez, settle down, I thought I was just moral support…"

As they began crossing the park, Lea bolting to meet them halfway, Steph shook her head.

"You're in this just as much as me. It seems right…"

Tim didn't respond, tucking his hands into the pockets of his jacket, as the small blonde collided with mostly leg, wrapping arms around and squeezing. Stephanie froze up, looking first to Tim, who shrugged a shoulder, looking just as confused as Steph felt, then to Mrs Jacobs, who nodded faintly. Steph took that as clearance to crouch and gently hug the girl, her girl, her daughter.
Squeezing her eyes shut and swallowing, she did what she does best; stamped down on her own emotions for now, and smiled, clearing her throat before speaking.

"Hey, kiddo! That costume looks better in person!"

With an excited giggle, Lea broke away to excitedly twirl, flaring the skirt and cape, before striking a superhero pose, her hands on her hips, shoulders back, as Steph sank back on her haunches, years of rooftop stake outs coming into play, to watch.

"I just wanna dress up like Robin now. I don't want to be Robin anymore. After your letter, me and Mommy looked up the news on the internet about Robin and you were right! It is really dangerous!"

Lea scooted in close, shooting a glance back to Mrs Jacobs, then up to Tim, before whispering.

"Is the Robin that was there for me being born ok though? You said it was our secret…"

Resisting the urge to start laughing, Steph put on a very serious face, and nodded once, before whispering back.

"He's just fine. There's actually something in here from him…"

Steph help up the bag, to which Lea clapped excitedly, bouncing on the balls of her feet.
Steph slowly straightened up, looking at Mrs Jacobs, with a quick, concerned frown.

"As long as you don't mind, that is."

"No, that's alright."

"Ok, let's find a bench or something so you can sit and see it all…"

Steph began, and Lea was off like a shot, looking for a park bench, or a picnic bench to sit at.

"I didn't think that trait would be genetic…"

Tim mutters from beside her with a faint smile, Steph reflexively swatting his arm with the back of her hand as she watched the tiny mass of blonde, black and purple running around. After a second she frowned and clapped her hand to the side of her face.

"I am so sorry, I haven't meant to be rude. Hi, Mrs Jacobs, I'm Stephanie, thank you so much for letting this happen… this Tim… he's my… It's complicated, a lot of the time, on and off boyfriend since high school, and he took me to birthing classes so it just felt right to-"

"You're nervous babbling, babe… Hi, I'm Tim, nice to meet you. She's really grateful, and very nervous-"

"Oh god so nervous…"

Steph laughs as they all move towards the table Lea had found, and was now standing on top of, waving her arms to signal to them.

"So, are you the father, Tim?"

"No, no. I started seeing Steph after they broke up, she found out she was pregnant pretty early in our relationship…"

"And you helped her through it? You were just kids yourself… what, 14?"

"Well, I was 14, he was 13…"

Steph absently pipes up. She had her arm through Tim's, but she hadn't taken her eyes of Lea since she climbed on the table.

"Incredible… you're both so much more well adjusted than I expected. No offence, Stephanie."

After a reflexive laugh from the both of them being called 'well adjusted', Steph shook her head.

"Nono, none taken… trust me, I get it. What kinda person has a kid at 14, right? But I learnt pretty quickly mistakes don't define you. Not that Lea was a mistake. Just-"

Mrs Jacobs nods, smiling.

"I understand. Don't worry. No need for more stress babbles."

Tim barked a laugh.

"Always need for stress babbles from Blondie. Always. Non stop. You should have heard her, all the way here…"

Flushing slightly, Stephanie jabbed a finger into his ribs.

"I'm gonna let it slide today, but you watch it…"

Mrs Jacobs shook her head slightly, smiling at their antics, as they approached the table, slipping in to take a seat, as Lea clapped her hands.

"Steph! Steph! Catch me!"

Before taking a running jump off the table. A 5, almost 6 year girl didn't weigh anywhere near as much as the people she was used to catching from buildings, but those people weren't usually her daughter threatening to smash their head into concrete if she missed. Shoving the gift bag into Tim's arms, and scooting forward to catch Lea against her chest, her entire body behind the smaller blondes, frowning slightly, giving her a light squeeze, before looking back at Tim.

"I understand now… never again…"

Carrying the giggling child to be seated, Tim shaking his head, somewhat amused by Steph getting a taste of her own medicine, setting the bag down in front of them, Lea on Stephs lap, Mrs Jacobs digging through her bag for something.

"You're lucky Stephanie is quick and could catch you, pumpkin. Remember what happened when you did that to me when I wasn't ready for you?"

Lea quieted slightly, nodding, lifting her bangs and turning to look up at Steph.

"6 stitches at the hospital…"

With a shake of her head, Steph smoothed her bangs back down and looked at Tim, who started pulling out plastic figures from the bag, setting them out.

"So, we went and raided Bat Burger for one of each of the toys they have. They have Batman, Nightwing, Red Robin, Robin, Signal, Red Hood, Catwoman and Batgirl. It's a decent line up. But it's not all the Batfamily."

"Whoa! There's so many! But there's more than that?!"

Lea leant forward, snatching up Robin and Batman immediately, Stephanie just resting her chin on the top of her head. She barely even noticed the clicking and movement from off to her side.

"There's so many, Gotham can't keep track. We also brought some stuff from the Bat Spotting Tour. There's a flashlight that's a bat signal, a bunch of stickers, of all everyone's logos, a water bottle, and a bat logo sweatshirt. It's a purple one, with a yellow logo-"

Stephanie cut in.

"Because purple is the best color. And this one would technically be a Batgirl one, but that's fine."

"-Yes. That. It might be a bit big, but it should fit for a little while at least…"

By now Lea was standing, excitedly on Stephs thighs, which was fine. Everything was fine, didn't hurt at all. Shifting to look past her hip, Lea bouncing excitedly, she looked between the two of them, then frowned slightly, leaning down to Steph to whisper.

"Which one is from our friend?"

Steph reached for the sweatshirt, unfolded it, and took a folded envelope from the pocket.

"This one…"

Lea took the envelope and dropped back to a seated position in Stephs lap, ripping it open, as Steph and Tim shared a look, before Tim slowly started putting everything away again.

"Everything doesn't have to be about fear. There's room in our line of work for hope, too."
Lea,
You're growing up so fast! It seems like only yesterday you were just a baby, swaddled and in the hospital.
I remember your little fingers gripping mine.
We will keep an eye on you. Keep you safe. For Steph.
-Red Robin.

Lea gasped and threw the Batman toy back into the bag, snatching at the Red Robin one before Tim could put it away. Looking up at Stephanie, Lea pointed at the note, whispering.

"Really?! Ours is still heroing?!"

With a nod, and amused laugh, Steph confirms.

"Yeah. But secrets, ok?"

Mrs Jacobs cleared her throat to get their attention.

"Well, it's only fair that you give Stephanie your gift for her now, don't you think?"

"OH YEAH!"

Lea scrambled over the table to her mother, and took the lovely black leather book she had been hiding under the table.

"This is for you! When the pie we got came back and told us all about you, and told you you were a good person, we wanted to share with you!"

"She means P.I…."

Mrs Jacobs smiled fondly at Lea, as she held the book out with both hands, Stephanie taking it almost cautiously.

"Well, thank you…"

"Oh, that reminds me. I wanted to ask. That private eye you hired did an amazing job, tracking down the parent on the birth certificate of a closed adoption, would you mind if I got their name? We might have some cases for them at work…"

Tim, ever the detective, was always asking questions, while Steph was too busy flicking through what she now knew was a photo album, with from adoption date, through to today, literally this day, a Polaroid of them sitting at the bench, Stephs chin on Lea's head, Tim gesturing animatedly as he spoke to them.
Looking up in surprise, Mrs Jacobs raised the Polaroid camera from her bag with a smile and turned her attention to Tim's question.

"Oh, it was, something Malone… I've got his card here still if you'd like it…"

Hearing 'Malone' Steph and Tim both exchange a glance, and Tim nodded, giving his most well practiced business smile.

"Yes, please. If you wouldn't mind."

Digging through her bag again for a moment, while Lea pointed out different pictures to Steph, Mrs Jacobs handed over the card, which Tim glanced at, before pocketing.

"Thank you…"

The rest of the afternoon was spent by Stephanie chasing around the smaller blonde, while the two distinctly more mature people sat and chatted idly, until Steph shuffled back over, carrying Lea, her head against her shoulder, yellow cape in hand.

"I think she's tuckered out…"

She grinned almost sheepishly, as Mrs Jacobs looked almost surprised.

"Well I'll be. Nap time was never a thing around our house. Just too much energy. What did you do?!"

"I played Superman with her. Superman flies at super speed, so you gotta go super fast, after all. I didn't do nap time either… I still don't sleep a whole lot… do you wanna-"

"Oh no, please, bring her to the car for me, I have a feeling there'd be a tantrum if I tried to take her from you now…"

With a small smile to Tim, who followed along behind to the blue sedan, Stephanie carefully ducked both herself and Lea in to set her in the back seat, slowly snapping the seatbelt in place, and draping the yellow length of fabric over her as a blanket, smiling gently.

"Stephanie..?"

Lea gently grabbed her sleeve. Steph stopped moving.

"Yeah, kiddo?"

"You'll come visit again, right?"

Gently smoothing her messed up hair, she smiled softly.

"Of course…"

With that, Lea let go, nodding herself back into dozing. Gently shutting the door, Steph stood back, as Mrs Jacobs handed her a slip of paper.

"Here. My number, and the house number. You're welcome any time. You've been great. Both of you. She would have been fine with you."

She looked between the two of them pointedly, Steph frowning slightly and shaking her head reflexively, Tim slipping his arm around Stephs waist, knowing what she was thinking, them having had this conversation at least a dozen times before.
Waving goodbye as she slowly pulled away, Steph turned on her heels, taking the photo album from Tim and beelining to the Compact, slipping into the passenger side, and flipping to the last page, busting into the happy tears she had been stamping down the entire time.
Slipping into the drivers seat, and starting their dive back to Gotham, Tim took up Stephs hand, squeezing it gently.

"That went better than expected…"

"Oh, it did… But I'm murdering Bruce…"

Steph sniffles, with a sob of a laugh, with a nod in agreement from Tim.

"I'm almost fifty percent sure nothing could go wrong."Stephanie Brownwww.roleplayer.me/DorkKnight

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