cain siblings

Bruce Wayne - Father Extraordinaire

…I’ve rediscovered my love for the Batman fandom. I grew up with the caped crusader, and when most girls my age were playing princess dress-up, I was trying to tie a black cape around my neck.

This was my first fandom, at the age of seven. Dick Grayson was my first love. You know what? He still is.

This is my first foray into this fandom on tumblr. I hope that this fic is an appropriate start.

This is also posted on ao3, where I write as Living_Free:



Bruce Wayne is Gotham’s media darling.

He’s their late-night scandal maker, their social butterfly, the ultimate playboy, scourge of the social circle. No young person is safe from his charm.

Then he has a child.

And another.

And he never stops.


Bruce Wayne was Gotham’s guilty pleasure - billionaire, playboy, and media sweetheart. He was always ready for the cameras with a witty quip, or a dashing smile, always with a slim, svelte, lady on his arm.

Until one day, there was no lady.

Instead, a tiny child was hanging off of his hand, grinning up at his guardian. When Bruce Wayne looked down from the cameras, he lost his toothy smile, and instead, it melted into a softer one. The small child giggled and buried himself into Bruce’s side, which effectively hindered any and all females from attaching themselves to him.

“This is Dick,” he introduced the sleepy child in his arms to the media. “He’s mine.”

In his arms, Dick would giggle and doze off, or at least pretend to. Bruce would take this as his excuse to escape the gathering - “I need to put him to bed,” he would say earnestly. In the car, Bruce would tell Dick what a smart boy he was, and within a few minutes, the pair could be seen leaping across rooftops, the little Robin cheering his mentor on as the Batman beat twelve types of shit out of the villains of Gotham.


Years later, Dick would still be seen on Bruce’s arm, not so much adorable as mouthwateringly sexy. He would still look up at his mentor, giggling, and Bruce would still smile softly down at him.

They still owned the night, but Batman would more often cede control of the beating of villains to his first Robin, watching from the sidelines as Nightwing gracefully thrashed the rogues of the city.

As Bruce looked at his boy - always boy, at least to him - he would feel a spark of pride. No matter the dark moments in his life, no matter the mistakes he made, he would always know that he had gotten one thing right.

And that was enough.


“This is Jason,” Bruce said some years later. “He’s also mine.” Jason just scowled up at his adopted father, until Dick whisked him away to scowl at other people.

Jason was a fish out of water with the Waynes. Where Dick was a natural performer, Jason hated being in the limelight, clinging to his elder brother or hiding behind his father’s large frame. Bruce learnt to step carefully, for fear of crushing his newest son. Jason was much more at ease as Robin, where he could shine in his own way.

Where he floundered Jason Todd-Wayne, Jason made his mark as Robin, and Bruce couldn’t have been happier. Bruce smiled bigger than ever, happy that both his sons were making their way in the world, kicking ass and taking names.

Until one day, Bruce didn’t smile anymore.


“Hood, stop!”

“Hood, no!”

“Hood, don’t!”

Batman had never thought that he would address his second son again, much less with such reprimands. Every time Jason raised his gun, Bruce’s heart would bleed a little more, yearning to smack the gun out of his boy’s hand.

Nightwing didn’t have the heart to discipline his wayward brother, too glad at having Jason back to do anything. Tim was still skittish around him, sticking close to Bruce or Dick whenever Red Hood was around. And wasn’t that another dagger to the heart.

Eventually, things did look up. Jason warmed to Dick first, having never lost the soft spot he had for his elder brother, and then Alfred. No one could stay mad at Alfred. Jason would visit more often, hanging around Dick’s room. Whenever Bruce would show up, hoping to catch Jason, the boy would leap out of the nearest window.

Tim was shy around Jason, fearful of invoking the older man’s anger. Jason made no moves to calm the boy, still resentful of him. Bruce thought that his two youngest would never get along until one night, Red Hood entered the Batcave carrying Red Robin in his arms, as the boy rested his head on Jason’s chest. R'as Al Ghul had been holding Tim a little too close for comfort, having sedated the young bat. That had been enough to set Jason off, pulverizing the old lech and bringing the shaky boy back home.

Dick had predictably gone ballistic, weeping and cursing, refusing to let go of a disorientated Tim. Bruce was left to deal with Jason, who looked uncomfortable being left with his estranged father. Bruce only compounded the situation by drawing Jason into a hug. Jason just stood there as Bruce squeezed him, whispering thanks in his ear, before leaving to take Tim upstairs.

Dick led Jason upstairs, clinging to his arm, head resting on his shoulder, a little teary thinking about what could have been. Jason allowed Dick to take him upstairs, allowed him to cuddle up to him, sitting squished together in Tim’s room as the boy himself clung to Bruce in bed. Later that night, Jason started awake, with Dick still snuggled up to him, and Bruce snoring lightly, his hand in Tim’s hair. Jason looked at Tim, who was wide awake, looking directly at Jason with wide eyes. Jason stared back calmly, making no moves, only smiling slightly. Eventually, Tim’s eyes closed, his fears assuaged, at least in that one regard.

From that night on, something shifted in their family dynamic, and Tim would shyly claim to have two brothers. Jason would just grunt, but not refute this fact. Gotham learned that overnight that the Bat and his Birds were now a solid group of four, and none were to be trifled with.

That night onwards, Bruce stood a little taller, a little prouder.


The media speculate that after the death of his second son, Bruce Wayne would not smile again, and for a long time, he didn’t. His eldest came back to Gotham, and clung tighter than ever to his father’s arm, no force capable of moving him from his place.

It took a waifish boy to lure a smile out of Bruce Wayne again, months later. Doggedly determined, little Tim Drake stalked the Batman around Gotham, until one day, tired of his little shadow, Bruce just look the little boy home.

Wayne Manor regained its light with the little boy running around its halls, all around the Batcave, and into Bruce’s heart. Dick was lured out of his depression by the tiny boy, his heart picking up at the prospect of having another little brother to hold and love.

One fine night, Bruce Wayne showed up at another gala, Dick holding one arm as per usual, and a small boy cradled in his other arm. “This is Tim,” Bruce introduced his newest son, “he’s mine.” Dick grinned as Bruce passed the boy to him. Tim spent a lot of his early galas in either Bruce’s or Dick’s arms, both being fearful of the small boy being trampled in the horde of unforgiving socialites.

The streets were another story entirely. The new Robin earned a reputation of being sneaky, quiet, and almost as clever as the Bat himself.

Eventually, the Batman learned to stand strong again, and the caped crusader ruled the night once more, his little bird by his side.


Damian Wayne was a nightmare.

The media hated him, and the feeling was mutual. He growled and bit and scratched, and clung to his eldest brother like a limpet. The Feral Wayne, the media called him.

Bruce was at his wits end when it came to Damian. The boy was not warming to him, Jason, or Tim, and only sought out Dick. Dick had his hands full with the youngest Wayne, having become a pseudo-mother virtually overnight.

The boy’s ideals were warped, twisted by his time with the League of Assassins, and his heart was hard. Time would prove to be a true healer, slowly melting Damian’s heart. Unbelievably, Gotham and life as Dick Grayson’s Robin thawed Damian’s cold exterior, and his warm core was revealed.

When Bruce was thought dead, and Dick was left to pick up the pieces, Damian clung to his brother harder than ever, desperate not to let his brother break. When Tim brought Bruce back, Damian heaved a sigh of relief as Dick handed the cowl over again, then proceeded to smother Bruce with his all consuming hug.

Something changed that night, when Damian saw that Tim was truly capable of moving mountains for their family. Damian gained a new respect for his elder brother, and made it known in small ways - heeding Tim’s advice on patrol, keeping his silence around the older boy as he worked. When Family Photo time rolled around, Dick subtly passed Damian over to position him on Tim’s lap, and to everyone’s surprise, Damian did not even squirm as Tim’s arms encircled his waist. The same could not be said of Jason, who threw a mini fit when Bruce tried the same with him.

The photo came out thus - Damian sitting on Tim’s lap, both with serene smiles, Dick next to them, one arm wrapped around Jason and one over Tim’s shoulders. Bruce stood to the side, glowing with happiness, his arm thrown sloppily around Alfred, who gave his best Mona Lisa impression.

The photo was hung in the batcave, where it still hangs to this day, a loving reminder to the Bats of the challenges that they overcame to come together.


Bruce looked down at the slightly built girl who stared stoically back up at him. Boys, he could handle. He was familiar with their ways. He had given the birds and the bees speech to all of them, nursed their owies, and trained them to become heroes though the years.

Bruce took a deep breath. He could make another hero of this one, too.

“You ready to be a hero?” Bruce asked Cassandra. A nod.

“It’ll have to wait,” Dick said, flouncing in. “The Wayne Christmas Gala is tonight. We have to get ready to schmooze.”

Bruce wrinkled his nose in distaste, eliciting a laugh from the girl. Bruce looked down in a panic, realizing that he had no clothes for a little lady. “I have nothing for you to dress in,” Bruce said, vocalizing his dread.

Dick beamed at Bruce’s conundrum, and ushered the entire family into the car. “Mall trip!” He bleated, as Bruce paled. They found themselves at the mall, Cassandra holding onto Bruce’s hand at the ladies section while Dick piled his arms with everything that looked cute enough for his sister. Cassandra refused to become Dick’s model, stalking out of the store, which left Bruce to pick something for a young lady. He eventually chose a disgusting, pink, number, much to Dick’s delight.

Cassandra emerged from the room that night in the flowing, frilly, disaster, as Bruce looked at her, considering. “This is okay, right?” Alfred tutted from the corner, muttering about how a young lady with untamed hair would stand out like a sore thumb at a gathering such as the one they were going to tonight. Bruce panicked once more as Dick passed a comb and hair ties into his hands.

At the gala, Bruce presented his newest child, complete with uneven pigtails and overdone blush. “This is my daughter,” he said proudly. “She’s mine.” To her credit, Cassandra didn’t scowl.

That night, Black Bat kicked ass harder than ever, taking out her humiliation on the evildoers of Gotham City. Although he was clueless as to what brought on her unprecedented savagery, he still watched her like the proud father that he was.

This one is for @jowharak, who wanted more Cass & Dami fics. There are not enough of these two interacting, so I decided to write something short and fluffy.

Damian’s been in a bad mood for two days now, snapping at anyone who spends too much time with him, refusing food out of spite, hiding in secluded corners of the Manor until someone (usually Father) drags him out. And Father can reprimand his behaviour all he wants but it’s not going to change anything because it’s all his fault anyway. Two nights ago Damian had sprained his wrist on patrol - a minor injury - and Father had benched him without hesitation. Forbidden him from not only patrolling but training as well until it was healed.

When Damian had sought out Cain in the cave, he had expected her, of all his Father’s collected strays, to understand his need to continue training. Pain is merely a product of the mind, a weakness he cannot afford to give into. He has to be better, stronger, faster. Like Batman. Like her.

She had only shaken her head, though, turned away and gone to change out of her workout clothes. Left him furious and alone on the mats.

The squeak of a window being forced open breaks him out of his reverie. He tenses, melting further back into the corner he’s sitting in, eyes darting around for something he could use as a weapon. The chances of it being an intruder are less than slim, but better safe than sorry.

A few seconds later a ball of black rolls across the attic floor, then Cain is lifting her head to smile at him from her crouched position less than a metre away. "Littlest brother,“ she says in lieu of proper greeting.

Damian glowers. "The door not good enough for you?”

Cain tilts her head, still staring at him without moving. “Faster from outside.”

“Tt.” He turns away to look out the window, watching out of the corner of his eye as Cain straightens up and begins walking around the attic. She picks up a brass candlestick and inspects it carefully before setting it down and moving onto a box full of old notebooks with Dick scrawled across the side. “What are you doing?” he eventually snaps, after numerous sheets have been lifted, objects scrutinised and boxes rifled through.

“Exploring,” Cain replies simply.


She shrugs. “Why not?”

Damian frowns as she pulls out an old, dusty photo album and sits cross-legged on the floor to flick through it. He watches for several minutes but Cain doesn’t make any attempts to engage him, just continues perusing the album until she gets to the end, then reaches for another one. Damian eventually turns away, looking back out the window at the sinking sun setting the sprawling Manor grounds aglow. The silence that settles over the attic is surprisingly comfortable and Damian allows himself to retreat back into his thoughts.

“I offended you.”

The quiet admission has him turning abruptly back toward her, frown deepening at the openly curious look on her face. Her eyes sweep over him, seeing things he does not mean to reveal. The waning afternoon light casts abstract shadows across them both. Damian watches them drift across her face and doesn’t know what to say. For once, it is Cain who fills the room with words.

“I did not mean to…” She hesitates, lip pulled between her teeth as she searched for the word she wants. “Make you little?”

“Belittle,” Damian corrects automatically and she smiles gratefully.

“Yes, belittle,” she repeats. “I wanted to help you get better.”

It takes a few seconds for her meaning to make sense in Damian’s mind but when it does his lips thin and his brow punches with a scowl. “I don’t need to get better,” he snaps. “I need to be better.”

Cain lets the heated tone wash over her, pulling her knees up to her chest and wrapping her arms loosely around her shins.

“Like you,” Damian continues. “You’re fast and strong and you don’t let stupid injuries stop you. If you would just teach me-”

“Not stupid,” she retorts. Then, quieter, “Can’t.”

“But you’re-”

“No.” She’s suddenly right in front of him, hands tight on his shoulders. "No. Not like me. I am… made wrong.“ Her fingers fist in the material of his shirt, trembling slightly. Her eyes are hard, steely in the weak orange light. "Be you. You is better.”

Damian’s breath is caught in his throat, eyes wide as she steps back, movements fluid and carefully controlled. The new position drenches her in shadow, invisible if Damian didn’t know she was there. If he wasn’t trained to he a Bat.

His voice is small when he finally says, “What if being me isn’t good enough?”

What if next time it isn’t my wrist, but somebody’s neck?

They stare at each other in the nearly dark attic, quiet breathing falling into sync as Damian waits for an answer. The minutes stretch out until, just when he thinks he isn’t going to get one, she speaks, voice whisper soft.

“Good enough for me.”

And, somehow, it is that, not Pennyworth’s wisdom or Father’s reassurances, which makes Damian feel better. 

“Should go,” she says a moment later. “Almost dinner.”

Cain holds out a hand and he hesitates only a second before taking it. Her fingers tangle with his, squeezing gently. Her smile is warm. Damian smiles back.


*UPDATE May 7, 2014 1:20am MST*

Photo credit to mujirushi_pink (!!! Thanks again to mustardtan and viridianfae for helping us source the owner. <3 

hc that duke and cass are relatively close in size and they both like to switch costumes abt every other night and when bruce steps down as batman they both decide to be batman,,, it goes on for a year before anyone outside the family finds out


Art improvement time! Cain and Setsuka Heel, over a year ago (jesus christ have I been obsessed with these two edgelords THAT LONG) and now! Man, I had to adjust a lot with this one…I had to go back and redo a lot of the base posing/proportions on this because hooo boy it was a MESS. 

I love these two goths so much. And I’m a lot happier with how the one on the right came out!

Good Siblings are Hard to Come By

Summary: In which Cass and Damian are good siblings, even when they’re wasting valuable time that could be spent saving Bruce’s life. Day 3 of batfam week

ao3 |

“SOMEONE GET HIM!” a man yelled into the crowd, his face practically purple, his veins popping out from his neck, gun waving around at the crowd threateningly. “SOMEONE GET THE BATMAN OR BRUCE WAYNE DIES!”

Keep reading

Harper Row Headcannon No. 2

For girls week and cause she is just awesome.

- First off, this girl should get a big sister of the year award. Cullen is one of her main concerns. Whether it be shaving her hair in solidarity with him and to support. Or watching anime with him and his friends.

- Her teasing others because her mask is actually attached to something.

- Rocking a tux at any event.

- Blue and purple are hard colors to keep up in hair, so she would have had to become good at at home hair coloring.

- Letting Stephanie or Cass help if they wanted to.

- Eager to learn what anyone will teach her. She will ask a lot of questions.

- Caring around a giant shock gun is going to give you a workout. Likes to surprise people with how strong she really is.

- Makes a lot of her own stuff. Due to this she has gotten shocked a few times. Rubber gloves are a must.

- I could see her being the one to drag her feet in socks on the carpet just to shock someone who is annoying her.

- Bi and proud.

- Expert on cooking on a budget.

- The kind of friend who would let you crash on the couch anytime.

The complete list of punishable offenses committed inside Wayne Manor, April 2016:

  • placed a fake suggestion box inside the batcave, encouraged siblings to submit requests (note: box quickly filled with suggestions) (further note: most suggestions were unnecessarily sarcastic)
  • ate only the chocolate side out of a full gallon of neapolitan ice cream that did not belong to them
  • subsisted on Hot Cheetos for 72 hours
  • purchased a small doll of a sibling’s superhero identity, used it as a pincushion (note: guilty party proceeded to use said pincushion in a public space, for a prolonged period of time, with evident delight)
  • punctuated a threatening conversation by constructing a shank out of an empty soda can, waving it at a sibling
  • “I haven’t been completely honest with you” “shocker”
  • excessive bat puns
  • excessive cave puns
  • excessive super puns (note: guilty party had already been banned from all wordplay for a two month period)
  • swapped the caf/decaf coffee jars
  • referred to a sibling as “pocket-sized” (note: resulting conflict chipped assorted china, a chair leg, and the instigator’s tooth)

its-a-goddamn-heartbreak  asked:

One of Cain's siblings visiting him sometime during his epic three stomach bug adventure (like, after number 2 at the start of number 3) and getting really worried about how sick and skinny he is. Bonus points if Damian is by now equally stressed out by it.

A/N: So here is Part 2 of Cain’s Trilogy. You can find Part 1 Here! I really loved writing this (mainly because I think I love Jethro and Cain together), but it was quite difficult - so I’m sorry if it reads a little stiltedly. I hope you enjoy, and look forward to part 3!! 😊 

“Are you absolutely sure you’re up to Jethro visiting this weekend?” Damian asked as he dried his hands on a tea towel, watching as Cain blew on a single piece of pasta that was on his fork, and then popped it in his mouth, chewing slowly. It had been over a day and a half since Cain had last vomited, but he was still on the easier to eat kinds of foods as after so much vomiting and dry retching his entire digestive tract was still tender and inflamed.

“It’ll be fine,” Cain answered, spearing another piece of pasta onto his fork and blowing on it to cool it down. “All he wants to do is go for a walk round campus tomorrow, feel like a student, y’know? I think we’ll just watch a film or something tonight.” Damian was watching Cain closely as he dried up the dishes he’d just washed. Regardless of Cain’s assurances, Damian wasn’t so sure… His friend’s angular features seemed even more prominent than usual, and there was something about him that didn’t seem quite as stable. Damian didn’t want to suggest Cain was fragile – but whatever bug he had been hit with had taken its toll. Damian wasn’t convinced by the quick bounce back., but he bit his lip and shrugged his shoulders.

“Okay,” he agreed, “but what are you going to eat tonight? Jethro’s going to want more than just plain pasta.”

“Yeah,” Cain nodded, looking down at the bowl that constituted his lunch. “I’ll have to think about that…”

Cain could have spotted Jethro’s beam and shock of white blonde hair from a mile off as he bounced up the escalator, through the turnstile and embraced his brother with a massive bear hug. At fourteen, Jethro was almost the same height as Cain, and Cain suspected there was still another growth spurt in him yet – he might end up rivalling Eden! As Jethro pulled back his light eyes scanned across Cain’s face and he noted the sharper than usual cheekbones.

“Are you okay?” He asked, adjusting the strap of his backpack.

“Yeah!” Cain answered cheerily, beginning to lead his brother away from the station. “Right so, the plan is, we go and get food and snacks now, then back to my flat.”

“Okay!” Jethro nodded enthusiastically.

“I was thinking we have a proper student night in,” Cain said, “like a film, some chat – Damian’s going to be about, and another guy called Jesse.” Cain had to consciously force himself not to grin as he said this – he’d not formally introduced Jesse to his family as his boyfriend, which Jesse knew. Jesse was just excited at the prospect of meeting another of Cain’s brothers. “We thought we’d be better doing the night in thing rather than try and sneak you into the pub – I keep getting ID’d, so there’d be no hope for you!” 

“That’s okay!” Jethro agreed – a night in, chatting with intelligent students was more of his thing really. “Sounds good!”

Laden with treats that Cain was hoping the rest of the guys would help to eat, the two of them headed back to Cain’s flat. Jethro could hardly hide his excitement of getting to spend some genuine time in a student flat with his brother. It was quite sweet actually, Jethro inspected his brother’s room with a bright interest – looking in awe at the architectural drawings Cain had pinned to the wall, and then setting his backpack down on the edge of the double bed that they’d be sharing.

“This is so cool! I can’t wait until I’m at uni!” Jethro burbled, and Cain chuckled.
“Don’t go wasting your time away, it’ll be here sooner than you think!” Cain shook his head. “Have you chosen your subjects yet?”

“I got the forms home last week, so I’ve got to decide from the columns,” Jethro said. “I don’t think half of the teachers know what to think about me, they’re trying to decide – and I arty like you, sciencey like Eden, or sporty like Silas?”

“Well you’re Jethro, and you carve them your own sphere for whatever you want,” Cain shrugged, gathering up their snacks that they’d bought to take through to the shared living space.

“Yeah, it’s not always that easy,” Jethro muttered. Cain had to admit it wasn’t something he’d ever really thought about before, being the eldest he’d never had anyone’s lead to follow.

“You’ll manage it,” he assured, “I know you will, come on – let’s get food.”

They had just sat down with toasties and put on a film that Jethro had chosen (August Rush from Damian’s film collection) when the front door clattered.

“Jesse?” Cain called, fairly sure it would be his boyfriend coming back from his skate practice.

“Where are you?” Jesse’s voice called back.

“We’re in the living room!” Cain had just taken another bite of his toastie and had to chew and swallow fast to be able to reply.

“Give me a few minutes!”

“We’ve got chocolate!” Cain paused for a second, then Jesse appeared in the room, flushed and sweaty from skating, but looking expectant.

“Chocolate?” He asked and Cain laughed, amused at how predictable Jesse was at the mention of chocolate.

“Yeah, well – I made you a toastie as well,” Cain pointed at the plate balancing on the arm of the sofa, “and we have snacks.” He caught Jesse’s eyes and tried to flick his eyebrows towards his brother next to him. “This is Jethro.”

“Oh hello!” Jesse practically lunged forward across Cain to shake Jethro’s hand. “I’ve heard lots about you! You’ll have to excuse how minging I am, I’ve just been skating.” Jethro’s mouth had been full, and he chewed rapidly while he shook Jesse’s hand.

“You skate?” Jethro said, when his mouth was finally empty.

“Yeah,” Jesse nodded.

“He’s a pro! Competes internationally and everything!” Damian commented from the other side of the room.

“What?” Jethro exclaimed, turning sharply to look at his brother in an accusatory fashion. “You never told me one of your flatmates was a pro skater?!”

“Yeah – sorry…” Cain laughed, amused at the slightly embarrassed expression on Jesse’s face. “Jethro used to skate for a bit, until he fell off and broke both wrists!”

“You didn’t have to tell him that bit!” Jethro nudged Cain, his cheeks going a bit pink in embarrassment.

“Whoa really?” Jesse sat down across from Jethro, leaning forwards. “It’s always good to meet another skater!” This made Jethro’s entire face go bright pink.

“I – I, well, I’m not a real skater really,” Jethro stammered, apparently overawed, and Cain leant back into the sofa, smiling. He was pleased that it looked like Jesse and Jethro were going to get on, especially with the enthusiasm of their conversation; his stomach was full and for the first time in a week felt really comfortable. Things were looking up after the horrors of earlier in the week.

Damian’s phone bleeped and he took one look then sighed rather dramatically.

“What’s up?” Cain asked him as a sullen expression crossed his face.

“Ah nothing,” he shrugged his shoulders, “it’s just Jenna.” Cain waited expectantly, knowing Damian would give more details if he held out for them. “Something’s gone wrong with her new design, she wants me to facetime and chat about it…”

“What’s so bad about that?” Cain asked, not sure why Damian looked so gloomy.

“Ack, it’s not that easy, and she’ll go into intimate detail…” Damian ran his hand over his face. “She just gets all over emotional about it all, and I don’t know what to say.”

“Damian MacPherson! You get your backside in your room and facetime your girlfriend!” Cain instructed firmly. “You nod in the right places, say you’re sorry, and you listen! She listens to you when you blabber on about medicine!”

“I don’t blabber on about medicine!” Damian said indignantly.

“Yes, you do!” Cain snorted. “And Jenna listens to you cause she loves you, so go and listen to her.”

“Alright,” he conceded, standing up from his chair to go through to his room.

Cain shook his head slightly as he rested his back into the sofa; Jesse and Jethro were still deeply engrossed in conversation about skating, and Cain enjoyed the excitement between them.

Jethro hadn’t realised that on the sofa next to him, Cain had rested back and had drifted off into a doze until Jesse pointed over at him.

“You’ve worn him out already!” Jesse joked and Jethro grinned. “Look, I’m gonna jump in the shower, I’m totally minging right now – I won’t be too long, alright?”

“That’s totally cool!” Jethro nodded enthusiastically. “I’m still annoyed at Cain for not telling me you were a skater!”

“Ah well, I think he can be forgiven for that!” Jesse commented calmly. “Right, I’ll be back.”

Jethro rested back onto the sofa too, his heart was beating faster than usual, but he put that down to finding out that Cain’s flatmate was a pro skater – he’d never thought his brother was so cool! But as he sat there his heart didn’t seem to be calming down, and he felt a strange pressing right underneath his ribs; he frowned, not sure what it was, and allowed his hand to slip into the open bag of chocolates and popped some into his mouth.

Almost instantly an upset whine issued from Jethro’s stomach, and he felt a cold sweat break out across his forehead. He put his hand to his stomach where he could feel a glugging sensation, and he shifted on the sofa to try and get comfortable.

Guuuuurrrrggggguuuulllluuurrrrgggllllleee…..’ Jethro’s stomach let out a humongous gurgle, and he took a sharp breath in as he realised that the upset inside him wasn’t getting any better, in fact he was now feeling downright nauseous. Cain was still asleep and Jethro thought about waking him up, but he looked very relaxed that Jethro decided that he’d go and get some water first.

Jethro felt awkward as he carefully opened some of the cupboards in the small kitchen, finding shelves which had names sellotaped on to them.

“What are you looking for?” Jethro jumped and his stomach gave an unpleasant lurch which made him wince as the voice had come from the doorway, closing the cupboard door with a snap. It was Damian, smiling at Jethro as he came into the kitchen carrying a mug.

“Sorry – um, I was looking for a glass to get some water,” Jethro replied a little timidly.

“Oh, well,” Damian put his mug down on the counter and going to the right cupboard to draw out a glass. “Did Cain not tell you where they were?” He asked as he handed across the glass and Jethro bit his lip for a second.

“He kinda… is asleep,” Jethro admitted and Damian made a small face as he turned the kettle on.

“I don’t know if he told you, but he wasn’t well earlier on in the week,” Damian explained, sure that Cain wouldn’t mind if he told Jethro. “He’s probably still recovering a bit.” Jethro had filled up the glass of water and taken a sip, the wetness lingering in his mouth.

“No, I didn’t know…” Jethro said, a fear gripping his chest about the unsettled feeling in his gut and took a larger gulp of the water.

Rrrrruuuurrrgggllleeeeee.’ Jethro’s stomach let out another deep rumble, and Damian looked across at him.

“Are you okay?” He sounded concerned, especially as Jethro had doubled forward a little as his muscles cramped.

“I think I need to wake Cain up,” he answered, trying not to sound too panicked and upset, especially as he now really didn’t feel well himself.

“What’s wrong?” Damian had put his hand gently onto Jethro’s shoulder. “Are you feeling unwell?” Jethro nodded, looking up at his big brother’s friend, and as he did so his stomach gurgled loudly.

“Sorry…” He mumbled, putting his hand to the squeezing muscles in his abdomen, and Damian could suddenly tell that Jethro was only fourteen and scared. “Brrrruurrrp!” Jethro’s hand jumped up to his mouth as his eyes went wide.

“Oh dear, that didn’t sound good,” Damian commented. “Do you think you might be sick?” Jethro nodded quickly and Damin could almost see the colour draining out of his face.  “Come on, let’s get you to the bathroom and then I’ll get Cain for you.”

Very kindly Damian had put his hand at Jethro’s elbow and began to guide him through to the toilet; as he walked, Jethro’s stomach was rolling more fiercely and he burped more thickly.

“Alright, here we go,” Damian led Jethro in, and almost immediately Jethro got down on his knees and braced himself over the toilet. “I’ll get Cain for you, just hold on.”

Damian heard Jethro groan lightly as he left to wake up Cain; but as he reached the door of the living room his heart nearly stopped. Cain was awake and on his feet, but he was chalk white and visibly shaking.

“Cain? Oh no…” He said, watching as Cain leant heavily on the arm of the sofa.  

“Where’s Jethro?” Cain asked weakly, swallowing hard against a renewed bubbling in his stomach which he assumed was because he’d eaten something more exotic than dry toast or plain pasta.

“You’re not feeling well, are you?” Damian’s heart was battering in his chest as he knew that Jethro was alone in the bathroom, and Cain shook his head briefly, one of his hands rubbing across his belly. “Neither’s Jethro, he’s in the bathroom…”

“Oh no,” Cain pushed himself off the arm of the sofa and wobbled slightly as he headed through to the toilet, and Damian followed to make sure they were both alright.

Buuuuaarp!” Cain could hear Jethro’s ragged breathing as soon as he entered the bathroom, and Jethro’s head was practically buried in the toilet bowl. Pushing down his own nausea, he rushed to his brother and put his hand on his back.

“It’s alright Jethro,” Cain reassured, able to feel the muscles in Jethro’s back fluttering and he began to rub gently, “I’m here, you’re gonna be okay.”

“Sorry…” Jethro’s voice was wet, and he didn’t raise his head out of the toilet bowl.

“It’s okay, just take deep breaths,” Cain advised, following his own instructions and Damian was worried by how pale Cain was looking.

Brruuurrrggle!” Jethro burped; Cain winced as Jethro hunched his shoulders forward, panting as the nausea flowed over him in waves. “Buuuaaaarkk!”

The sound of puke rushing up Jethro’s throat and coating the inside of the toilet bowl was difficult for Cain, his own stomach squeezed at the noise and his knees felt a little weak. Cain perched on the edge of the bath, still in the distance to rub Jethro’s back with one hand but also able to massage his own rebelling gut.

“That’s it…” Cain tried to reassure verbally, but his mouth was so thick with his own saliva he found it difficult to get the words out. He clamped his mouth shut as his brother retched again noisily.

H’ggguuuuuuuuukkk!” Jethro heaved, bringing up another wave of sick, which splattered against the porcelain. Cain’s stomach lurched and suddenly he tasted acid at the back of his mouth. He’d momentarily moved his hand away from Jethro’s back to just in front of his face, then returned it hoping that Jethro hadn’t noticed its absence, but Damian had.

Cain’s hand rubbed gentle circles into Jethro’s back as he retched. Damian was uncertain about what he should do – Cain was his best mate and he felt able to help him, but Jethro was another kettle of fish. It was clear that Cain intended on powering through to look after him, but he couldn’t hide the translucent greyish tinge to his face, or that he was trembling.

Uuuurrp!” Jethro continued to belch openly and with each one Cain looked progressively more queasy, until he appeared to be fighting his own urge to retch. “H’kkkklllluuuurrrrggghhh!”

It was too much for Cain, as his abdomen squeezed so strongly that Damian could see it. His cheeks bulged out in his face and he was clearly trying to swallow down the mouthful of sick. Jerking forward, Cain’s hand shot up to his mouth, and Damian snapped into action. Grabbing Cain’s shoulders, he swivelled him where he was perched on the edge of the bath.

“Use the sink Cain,” Damian instructed, but Cain hesitated against Damian’s pushing and he knew exactly why. “I’ll clean it up later, don’t worry about it.” Cain’s hands clutched at the rim of the sink and he hauled himself up from the edge of the bath.

Huuuuuuueeeeerrrrrllll!” A copious wave of vomit lowed from Cain’s mouth, and he felt a familiar ache in his stomach as it squeezed to disgorge the contents.

“Cain!” Jethro croaked weakly, raising his head out of the toilet bowl and revealing he was just as grey looking as his big brother.

“Don’t – hrrrp – don’t worry Jethro,” Cain forced out, closing his eyes so he didn’t have to look at the puke in the sink. “I’m just – ulp – not feeling too good either.”

Huuuuurrrk!” Jethro had buried his head back into the toilet, and his shoulders jerked as he heaved.

Buuuuuuaaaarrrrrggghhhh!” Cain unleashed a further gush of sick, and Damian could see he was trying to his best to get it all out quickly so he could go back to looking after Jethro.

“Cain, quit pushing it,” Damian placed himself awkwardly in the tiny gap between Jethro on his knees and Cain gripping the sink. “You’ll only end up dry heaving – and do you remember how painful that is?”

Uuuuuurrrrrgggggnnnn….” Cain groaned, a string of bile sticking to his lips.

“God, look at the state of you!” Damian’s heart was pounding inside him; Cain had already been through enough – why was his body insisting on torturing him?

“Look – brrrk – look after Jethro,” Cain spluttered, “I’m – ulp – fine.”

“You both need looked after!” He protested.

“Get Jesse…” Cain panted roughly.

“Okay,” Damian replied, and Cain heard him leaving the bathroom.

“I’m sorry Jethro,” Cain forced, not moving from the sink. “It’ll be okay…” Cain was trying to sound reassuring but his voice was wobbling. His whole body felt like it’d been run over by a bull dozer, and the ache in his belly had turned vice-like again. Jethro burped weakly, which caused Cain’s stomach to tighten and another mouthful of sticky bile fell into the sink.

“You get Cain, I’ll get Jethro,” Damian’s voice came from the door, and almost instantly Jesse was by Cain’s side. His hands on Cain’s shoulders were reassuring, and Cain wanted to melt into his touch, but his stomach was still sending periodic bubbles of sick up his throat, and the last thing he wanted to do was throw up on Jesse.

“Alright, you’re gonna be alright,” Jesse muttered quietly in Cain’s ear; the toilet flushed behind them and there came noises of Damian helping Jethro up. “Let me help,” Jesse slipped his hand round Cain’s front, finding the hem of Cain’s t-shirt and sliding his hand underneath. His fingers were cold on the warm flesh of Cain’s belly, and his touch was simultaneously heavenly and heave inducing.

H’gggrrrrk!” The touch illicited a gag, Cain closed his eyes as he felt liquid forcing up and out his throat, and all the while Jesse kept massaging his stomach. “Hhhbbbrrr! Hrrrr!” Cain’s stomach felt empty and sore, and Jesse seemed to sense this as the pressure of his fingers eased off.

“You sound empty Cain…” Jesse said, moving his hand away from Cain’s belly and stroking the side of his face instead. If anyone knew what that would sound like, it would be Jesse. He had spent those nights with Cain earlier in the week, holding a bowl for him, rubbing his back and belly at different intervals, and doing everything he could to make his boyfriend feel better.

“Jus’ another minute…” Cain begged, then pitched forward with an empty, painful sounding retch. “Hrrrrkkkccch!”

“Nope, you’re definitely done,” Jesse insisted, taking a grip of Cain’s wrist and practically prizing him away from the sink. “It’s bed for you…” Jesse pulled him and Cain stumbled unsteadily so Jesse wrapped his arms around his waist. “Oh Cain…”

“Jethro?” Cain muttered hoarsely, his eyes wide as Jesse supported him out of the bathroom.

“He’s in bed, Damian’s looking after him,” Jesse told him calmly, attempting to push open the heavy door while propping Cain up too. “In we go, come on.”

Damian was in the room just as Jesse had said, and he rushed to help get Cain into bed. Jethro was curled on his side with his hands wrapped round his midriff.

“I’m sorry Jethro,” Cain mumbled, he put his arm out towards his pale little brother and Jethro instinctively shuffled towards him, seeking comfort. “It’ll be alright.”

“Alright you two,” Damian said gently, placing something at about knee level on the bed. “Sick bowl is in between you, just in case you need it… Although by the amount both of you brought up, I’d be surprised if there’s anything left in either of you!”

Uuuuurrrrgggghhh Damian, please…” Cain moaned as his stomach churned painfully at the thought.

“Get some rest then, hopefully you’ll both be better by the morning,” Jesse encouraged, and Cain heard them leaving and turned to look at Jesse.

Jethro’s face was still chalky, but his eyes were shut – Cain waited until he knew for definite that Jethro had fallen asleep before he closed his own eyes and allowed himself to slip into sleep.