“–and we’re joined today by billionaire socialite Bruce Wayne’s two youngest children… the baby-faced CEO of Wayne Enterprises, 17-year-old Timothy Drake-Wayne, and the newest addition to the Wayne family, 10-year-old biological son of Mr. Wayne, Damian. Thanks for joining us today, gentlemen.”
“It’s our pleasure, Poppy,” Tim says, which is a bald-faced lie. He has better things to do than feature on Good Morning, Gotham!, as their morning’s fluff-piece. But he should know better than to take Bruce’s threats lightly.
Damian is sitting beside him in a button-up and a designer hoodie, and his favourite pair of kicks. They’re blue and yellow and white, and they are about the size of Damian’s head. Miraculously, the kid isn’t scowling yet. Tim gives it five minutes.
Tim himself is in jeans and a pair of brand-new, blindingly-white chucks, with an open-collared shirt and a navy sports jacket. Exactly the correct image for WE’s young CEO, with the addition of the leg braces. The crutches were artfully set down beside him, leaning against the couch. Still in full-view of all the studio’s cameras. And thank goodness he’s not actually rehabbing a spinal injury; this couch is not as comfortable as it looks on TV.
“–like, living with the famed Bruce Wayne?”
Shit. Was that directed at him? Damian is looking up at him, too, expectant, so Tim laughs, hopes it sounds less awkward than he feels. Addresses his answer to Poppy rather than the cameras. “Well, I think all of us kids would agree that we get to see a very different Bruce than anyone else. He’s a fun guy, but he can be very serious when it comes to being a parent. And it’s no secret how determined he is, so. When he puts his mind to something… ”
She nods, smiling attentively. Waits a beat. “And it’s my understanding that all of his children–” here she consults the teleprompter, says “– Richie, Cassandra, the, ah, late Jason Todd, and the two of you… were all only children before becoming a part of Bruce Wayne’s family.”
Not a question, Tim thinks, but says “Yes. That’s correct.”
Poppy’s smile is big and plastic-white, when she says, “It must be quite a shift from being part of a small family–”
“Orphans,” Tim corrects her. Polite with just an edge of coolness. “We were orphans.”
“Right of course,” her smile barely flickers, “to go from that to being a part of such a large– not to mention public– family. Can you tell us what that’s like?”
“Well,” Tim says, “Dinners are a lot louder.”
Poppy laughs at that, and Damian nods beside him.
“In all seriousness though,” Tim continues, when it’s clear Damian’s not going to speak. Of all the times for the kid to shut his damn mouth… “It’s. It can be pretty nice, being a part of such a large family. My mom and dad had very little in the way of extended family, so I was fairly used to very quiet holidays, with just the three of us. Now, well. Things are much more lively. And I always did want a sibling or two.”
“And what about you, Damian?” Poppy says sweetly, in a little kid voice that Damian is going to break something over, later, “How do you like having brothers and a sister?”
Damian tilts his head, the picture of a thoughtful ten year old. “It’s okay, I guess,” he says. “They’re way cooler than some of my friend’s brothers and sisters. Even though we fight sometimes.”
It’s such a… kid answer. Tim is impressed.
And? Does Damian have friends?
Poppy gives that TV-laugh again, says, “I think it’s pretty typical for families to fight. You want to give the viewers at home an idea of a typical argument in the Wayne household?”
Tim puts an arm quickly around Damian, before the boy can speak; “Well,” he says, long-sufferingly, “Damian here likes to joke that I’m adopted–” pause for laugh, giving Damian a friendly shake “–and I like to joke that’s he’s, ha, a demon baby probably grown in a tube or something.”
At that Poppy gives something like a more genuine laugh, overlaid with genuine shock. But when she sees Damian rolling his eyes and elbowing Tim playfully in the ribs (harder than it looks, the little shit), she says, “Boys will be boys, I suppose.”
Here her face turns grave, and she says “Now, on a more serious note. Damian. Your mother’s identity has managed to stay a mystery, in spite of the questions that have been asked since your first appearance before the press.” She lowers her voice and leans in, the picture of confidentiality, “Can you tell me about your mom? Do you and she stay in contact?”
Damian’s brow furrows, his lip jutting in something like confusion. Distress. He turns to Tim, looking up at him pitifully, touching one hand to his side. Making sure he’s fully visible for the cameras. In a whisper that carries, the crafty kid says to him, “They… they promised I wouldn’t have to talk about her…”
Tim pulls Damian closer against his side, and frowns, says, “Ms. La Peer. We will not be answering any questions about Damian’s mother.”
No wonder these assholes hadn’t been able to provide them a list of questions beforehand. Well, Tim’s sure Bruce will be in touch.
“Of course,” she says, holding up her hands. “Of course. Everyone deserves their privacy. Now Timothy, since your, ah, assassination attempt… you’ve clearly had to make some lifestyle adjustments. We’ve had a lot of viewers expressing concern for you, especially after watching that harrowing footage of just a few months ago. Just how are you doing?”
“Well,” Tim says, loosening his grip on Damian enough that the boy can sit up straight. But he’s still pressed half against Tim. “I have my good days and I have my bad days. I’m definitely improving, though. Two days last week I was able to go without my leg braces! But I still need my crutches, obviously,” he says.
“Well that’s great news, Timothy,” Poppy tells him. “Do you get a lot of help from your family? With consideration to your limited mobility, I mean.”
“Are you kidding?” Tim grins, broadly. Uses the hand on Damian’s shoulder to pinch the boy’s cheek, says, “C’mon, one look at this face and you know he’s got his dad’s soft heart.”
“The face of an angel,” Poppy agrees, solemnly.
U-R-D-E-A-D, Damian taps in morse code, against his ribs, while Poppy thanks them again for joining her. Tim smiles winningly at the camera, arm painfully tight around the baby assassin. Who’s grin is getting strained.
“There you have it, Gotham,” Poppy says, to the camera. “A family that’ll warm your heart!”
there is a “defense of white laura kinney” in the tag and I want to pick it apart but I just don’t…have…the energy…
(including the classic “poc don’t have green eyes” and “she’s a clone of wolverine and thus has to be white” ignoring the fact that the fucked up explanation of how laura is a clone actually leaves a lot of latitude as far as verisimilitude goes. for instance we can have an apparently cis female clone but damn changing race is going too far)
I feel like in the same way there’s been a pushback against “awkward virgin doesn’t understand any modern technology steve rogers” that has resulted in “always confident sex machine technical genius steve rogers” (which really bugs me) there’s starting to also be some motion toward a pushback toward “stupid thor” which has become “uber genius thor” and I feel like, as I do about the steve thing, that both versions do a disservice to the character
like I prefer “thor is a super genius” to “thor is a dumbass” I think but both feel false to me and like they’re overcompensating for the middle which is something like “thor reacts with his emotions first and isn’t necessarily an intellectual which doesn’t = stupid not every character has to be a Genius (or a Sex Machine I’m looking at you people who keep acting like it’s absurd to think steve might be a virgin or somehow makes steve ~weak and unmanly~ to be a virgin) to be important and valuable jesus christ”
basically I’m tired of fandom reacting against itself with EPIC EXTREMES of characterization that both feel weak and uninteresting next to the complex actuality of the characters in question
I mean I guess that is what fandom kind of does, distills characters down to one or two traits and pretends that is all they are, but ugh it’s obnoxious to me EVERYTHING IS COMPLICATED, COMPLICATION IS THE JOY OF LIFE, WHY DOESN’T EVERYONE FANDOM LIKE ME etc. etc.
That feeling when you’re actually happy with a drawing for the first time the whole semester and then you hand it in very VERY optimistically because you think it’s the best drawing you’ve made so far and you’ve finally improved…..
And then you get it back and your TA’s comment reads that your work is just "not up to par.“