Obviously there's a scene in your dad hood AU where Jason is pacing around Bruce's study, ranting about how every time he tells Sammy to let something go, to pick her battles, she just glares at him and keeps going twice as hard, and Jason's ranting about how annoying and wilful she is, and Bruce is just sipping tea like, "Gosh. That must be so difficult Jason. I can't imagine what you're going through Jason. However would someone cope with their child acting like that Jason."
“She doesn’t listen to anything I say, I might as well be talking in Chinese!” Jason shouted amid his pacing, arms folded into an angry knot behind his back.
“Must be rough, son” Bruce said with the barest hint of a smile hidden behind his teacup. He’d been waiting for this for years and the rewards were as sweet as he’d imagined.
“She’s reckless and she clearly has no idea what’s she’s doing!” Jason continued to huff, stewing over his ward’s stubborn, adorable face as he patched her from another night of illicit crime fighting. All she had was a ratty sweatshirt and a stolen Robin mask. Who did she think she was?
“Like Tim says, can’t relate.” Bruce answered, now not even bothering to cover up the curve of his lips from his middle son. He could’ve told Jason that parenting wasn’t easy but the boy was used to being on the other side of the relationship. The young man turned to glare at his guardian.
“This is isn’t funny Bruce,” Jason hissed stalking forward and slamming his fists on the mahogany desk as he hovered threateningly over his impassive father figure.
“Of course not Jason; a willful child who won’t listen to you isn’t funny at all.” Bruce continued to not-smile.
“Goddammit B she’s going to get herself killed out there and there’s nothing I can do about it!” Now that did manage to wipe the smug expression off Bruce’s face as he looked into the angry face of his boy. But beneath that anger was a terribly familiar expression, one he saw most days in the mirror. It was terror, a bone deep fear that the ones you loved were drifting away from you and no matter what you did, they’d soon get too far and then disappear entirely and leave only emptiness in their wake. Samantha hasn’t been under Jason’s roof for long but then again, Bruce didn’t have Jason long before he too was lost.
“No she won’t,” Bruce said quietly, resolutely. “And do you know why?” He added on before Jason to open his mouth to reply. “Because you are better than me Jason. You see the problem, you see her for what and who she is, you understand what she needs and what she needs is you.” Taking a chance, Bruce leaned forward and placed one hand atop Jason’s own.
“You’re going to guide her, get her the help she needs, ask for help from us when you need it because you know what’s like to lose and to be lost.” Jason still hasn’t pulled his hand away so Bruce squeezes it lightly. “No one said being a father was easy Jason, but I can tell you it’s absolutely worth it. Be better than I was, be better for her.”
Jason face, normally a canvas of contradictory emotion, was slack except for his eyes which stared intently into his own. At that moment, Bruce would have traded every dollar he had for a glimpse into what the other man was thinking. After a moment, Jay stood up straight and removed his hands from the desk.
“You’re right, I am better than you.” Jason said sternly, “I won't make your mistakes old man and you better not make them either. My kids deserve better than a bitter, broken Batman for a grandpa so you better sharpen your act for their sake or I’ll make your head roll.” Bruce is unable to stop himself reacting with surprise at Jason’s words that causes the younger man to gift him with a rakish grin, so reminiscent of younger, better days.
“Tell Great Grandpa Alfie the whole family will be coming for dinner on Sunday for a big get together. He’ll enjoy the opportunity to put some meat on their bones, not mention embarrass the hell out of me.” He shoved his hands in his pockets and stalked towards the door. “Invite Doc Thompkins too, maybe see if we can open Sam up to the idea of talking to her. I don’t know if she’ll take to it but if that doesn’t work I’ll try something else. Anything and everything if I have to.”
“Of course, nothing less for your children.” Bruce says, his voice thick with the emotions he always tries to bury. Emotions made up of trusting smiles and a cold, dead weight in his arms. But Jason was here now, tall, proud and with 3 wonderful children at home. He couldn’t be more proud if he tried. “Keep reaching for her Jay, don’t let her drift away.”
“Not a chance in hell.” Jason nudged open the door and was gone, “see ya Sunday Gramps.” Bruce composed himself and leaned back in his chair bringing his fingertips together at his lips. He’s been called many things in his life but he thinks Grandpa might be his favorite.