While Bruce was lost in time, Tim would call his phone a lot. Even though he knew he’d never get an answer, just hearing Bruce’s voice over the voicemail was comforting. It let him feel, just for a moment, like maybe things were still normal, even though they weren’t. And sometimes he would leave messages, just so it felt like he was talking to him again. When Bruce got back, he found hundreds of messages on his answering machine, all from Tim.
“Hey, Bruce, it’s Tim. So uh, Dick made Damian Robin. He just… fired me. Just like that. *a deep breath* You know, I remember that time when you said that Robin would never be taken away from me, but I guess things are different now. Now I don’t really know what I’m going to do. *sigh* If you were here I’d probably just go ask you for advice, but that’s not really an option anymore, huh? *a humorless chuckle* …I thought the others would be on my side, help me try to find you, but they think I’m just grieving. They won’t even let me explain. And the funny thing is I don’t even blame them, because the more I tell myself again and again that you’re out there somewhere, the more it sounds like I’m just crazy. And I probably am, but… I know you’re alive. They don’t believe me, but I know. *a sniffle* Uh, I have to go, so… Bye, Bruce.” *click*
“Hi, Bruce. Me again. It’s already been a month since you’ve been gone. Or, at least I think it is. I don’t really know anymore. I’m still searching, in case you were wondering. I haven’t given up. I won’t give up. Everyone else has, but… I dunno, I guess they can afford to. They have other things to keep them going, so I guess they can afford to accept you’re gone. Don’t know if that says more about them or me. *halfhearted snort* *in the background, another voice asking Tim who he’s talking to* Nobody, Tam. Just… -it’s nobody. *back into the phone* I-I gotta go, so uh, talk to you later.” *click*
“It’s Tim again. I wonder what number message this is. Doesn’t really matter, I guess. So uh, I have to leave in a few hours. I’m gonna fight Ra’s. If you were here you’d probably tell me not to, because I’ll get killed. But you’re not here, and-and that’s why I have to. *long pause* You’d be right, though. I know I’m no match for him, and I know I won’t last for long, so I’ll probably die tonight. But even if he does kill me… it’ll be worth it. So uh, goodbye, I guess. And if this is my last message and I do die, then I just want you to know- *voice crack* *shaky breath* I just want you to know that I’m okay with it. Because at least it’s me rather than you. …Goodbye, Bruce.” *click*
Bruce listens to hundreds of other messages just like this, each one more heartbreaking than the last. When he’s finished, he clears them all, and then he picks up the phone again to call Tim.