“He ptharted it,” says Damian, all bloody-lipped and thunder-browed. Around Alfred’s gloved fingers in his mouth.
“Master Damian,” Alfred says, dabbing the bloody cloth. “What did I tell you about speaking? –don’t answer that, my boy, it was rhetorical.”
As response, Damian pulls away, batting Alfred’s hands aside and scootching back on the cot, out of the old man’s reach. The picture of a fed-up ten year old (essentially accurate).
Alfred sighs, then, taking off his rubber gloves and slinging them expertly into the wastebasket. “At least use the gauze until the bleeding has stopped, young sir. And don’t swallow any blood.”
Damian glowers, shoving a small wad of gauze into his cheek and crossing his arms.
“Whatever he told you, Alfred,” Red Robin, back to the Cave at last, storming over to the medical bay, “You can be sure he’s lying.” He yanks off his cowl, shooting Damian a filthy look, tells Alfred “He’s half-feral, I am stunned Bruce lets him out of the house.”
“Honestly, Damian, you’re lucky Conner let down his TTK so you didn’t break your damn hand.”
Alfred’s eyebrows fly straight up, and he says, “Connor Kent hit you?”
“He thtarted it!” shouts Damian, flying off the cot and upright.
“You punched him unprovoked, Damian!” Tim shouts back. Turns to Alfred again, says, “Literally out of nowhere, he just flew at Kon and hit him in the face– twice, until I could yank him off. I tossed him and he hit his face on the doorjamb, his own damn fault. Now how different’s that to the story he told you?”
“We hadn’t got to the how just yet,” Alfred says. Brow faintly furrowed in mild concern.
“It doesn’t matter that you’re Robin,” and Tim’s red-faced now, practically standing over Damian, “You’re not welcome at the Tower if you’re just going to attack my friends without cause– do you know how embarrassing this is? For me, and for Bruce, not to mention Dick, who you’re representing– you can’t just punch people for no reason–”
“He called me a demon!”
Damian’s small voice rings throughout the Cave, echoing and bouncing back to them, demon, demon. His hands are curled into fists at his sides, one side of his face puffy with swelling and gauze.
Tim, stopped partway through his tirade, wrinkles his brow in honest confusion. “We all call you that,” he says.
“Not him,” Damian says, fiercely, voice sounding thick. Eyes wet and unwavering. “Not–” and he swallows, looks away. Says, bitterly, “None of them even know me.”
Tim puts his hand up, rubs the bridge of his nose for a minute. Says, “Alfred?”
“Ahh yes, an urgent task awaits me upstairs,” says Alfred. Giving Tim a bracing pat on the shoulder and making his retreat.
They stand in an uncomfortable silence until he’s gone.
Tim sighs, then, walking closer to the cot. Says tiredly, “Sit.”
“Don’t tell me–” the boy starts, hotly, before seeing that Tim is already sitting. So he lifts himself back onto the cot, but won’t meet Tim’s gaze. Busies himself, instead, with carefully strapping his faintly-bruised knuckles.
“He didn’t,” Tim starts, hesitant. Short. “He wasn’t trying to be offensive, it’s just.” He puts a hand over his eyes again, tries, “You know how it’s different, when it’s one of us? Like Dick, or Steph, or even Jason? How we call each other names and stuff, but you just laugh or– or I guess in your case, roll your eyes or scowl and move on?”
Reluctant, glancing at Tim from the corner of his eye, he nods.
“Well,” Tim says, eyes on the Cave’s ceiling now. “The Titans are a sort of family. We do that, too.” And then, turning to Damian, “But you still know that it’s not okay to punch someone.”
Damian doesn’t say anything to that, so Tim pushes, “Come on, all you do it talk about how smart you are, I know you can use your words and have a successful interaction with someone.”
Damian spits out his bloodied gauze into his palm.
And Tim offers, quietly, “I’ll tell them not to call you that from now on, on the condition that you don’t punch teammates anymore.”
There’s a long pause, in which Damian does not say anything like ‘thank you’ or ‘i’m sorry’. Instead, eventually, “Did I hurt him?”
“You gave him a bloody nose,” Tim says. “Which kind of freaks him out, as a guy who bleeds very rarely. He heals fast though.”
There is another stretch of silence.
And Damian’s brow furrows again, blood still dribbling sluggishly down his chin. Says eventually, ponderously, “… Is this why I’m the only one not allowed to carry kryptonite in my belt?”
“This is exactly why,” Tim says, standing from the cot. “Ya lil nutjob.”
On July second, Bitty stood on his tiptoes, eyeing the arriving passengers for any sign of Kent. The flight was on time, according to the arrivals board. He hadn’t gotten a text message from Kent yet, but they had to have landed. Fidgeting with his phone, Bitty looked up at the boards again. Maybe he could find Kent by the baggage claim?
He’d managed to convince his parents – mostly his Mama – that it would be fine for him to go pick Kent up by himself. It wasn’t an awful drive from the Atlanta airport back to Madison, and, in all honesty, Bitty wanted Kent all to himself. He wanted to hold hands on the drive back from the airport, to kiss Kent when he saw him. He wanted to make sure Kent wasn’t freaking out too much about meeting his parents. Bitty checked the boards again, looking for baggage claim information.
He doesn’t know what to call this ‘thing’ between them. He knows they spend time together, he knows they care about each other, and he knows he wants nothing more than to have David by his side for now if not forever. He doesn’t have a name for it.
Right now, he’s not too bothered to care.
He comes home from practice to find his tall, lanky whatever in his kitchen feeding Kit. Kent drops his gear bag in the foyer and Kit comes over to greet him.
“Hey, Starshine” David calls from the kitchen.
“Hi there,” Kent chases Kit a couple of steps and picks her up right as he enters the kitchen.
“How was practice?” David asks. He reaches out and scratches Kits head as she purrs against Kent’s chest.
“Mmmhm? Oh yeah, practice was good. Nothing earth shattering, Swoops is trying to get everyone to go out tonight, to that sports bar downtown? If you have any interest?”
“Maybe? The Phillies are playing the Mets, could be fun?”
“You get your studying done?” Kent places Kit back on the ground and moves to grab a water bottle from his fridge.
“Yeah, I’ll survive these tests even if it kills me.”
Kent laughs and rolls his eyes, “come on, I need a nap.” Kent pulls David across the kitchen into his living room where Kent falls over the back of the couch and sprawls on his back. David comes around the front like the normal person he is, grabs a pillow and sets up camp with one of his textbooks at one end of Kent’s couch, Kent crawls over and lays his head in David’s lap.
“Why do we both support two terrible baseball teams?”
“Why haven’t you kissed me yet?”
“In my defense, you haven’t kissed me either.”
David leans down and kisses Kent softly, holding his face in his hand.
“Just so you know,” David begins, “I’m very happy with you slowly becoming my forever.”
Kent’s first instinct is to push away, make a joke, but Kent just takes one look at this freckled person staring down at him and it all fades away. Kent just looks at him and urges him to go on.
“Well, ah, you know, I’m happy where we are, you’re the person I’m going to spend the rest of my life with. We both just have to get there first.”
Kent, at a complete loss for words, twists around and falls into David’s lap, kissing him soundly. David moves his textbook aside and pulls Kent closer, their nap forgotten.
It was barely 5:40 am when Kent heard the telltale sound of claws scampering across the hardwood floors. He kept his eyes closed even though he could feel the slight pull of his blankets as the small dragon climbed up the side of the bed and deposited herself on his chest.
After less than a minute, she got impatient, and started rubbing her head under Kent’s chin, knowing that it tickled him. He laughed, giving himself away. “Yes, okay, I’m up,” he said before giving Kit an affectionate pat. Kit chirruped and hopped around the bed. She was flapping her small wings, but they were too immature to do anything effective beyond showing her excitement. According to the book Kent bought, it would be another year and a half before they would be strong enough to carry her in flight.
She hadn’t grown very much in the month that Kent had her, but her personality came through clearly. She was playful and affectionate with Kent almost to the point of harassment. She needed attention, a lot of it, or she would sit outside of whatever room Kent had closed her out, and wail. He didn’t even know dragons could sniff and whimper, but apparently, Kit could put on a good show when she wanted something.
Kent carried her in the bathroom and she sat on the sink counter while he brushed his teeth. She craned her head closer to the faucet every time he turned it on. She was still mystified by the concept of running water even though she hated getting wet. It was understandable since her natural habitat was dry, underground burrows in the middle of the desert.
In the kitchen, she waited eagerly by her food dish while Kent measured out the dragon chow for her. It was one of the more expensive brands of dragon food available on the market, but as far as Kent was concerned, his dragon deserved the best. It smelled vaguely of beef jerky and tuna, and not for the first time, Kent found himself wondering what it would actually taste like. He was cured of his curiosity, however, when he identified a dried piece of scorpion tail in the mix and gagged a little.
While Kit ate, Kent nibbled on the leftover pizza from last night. He balanced it out with banana after and the silent promise that he would eat healthier… next week. Kit abandoned her bowl partway through and climbed up Kent’s leg to investigate what he was eating because it was clearly more interesting that her own food. Kent let Kit have the last bite of banana. He enjoyed watching her mash the banana with a thoughtful expression, as if she couldn’t decide whether she liked it or not.
he wiped the excess banana from her face with a damp towel, he slipped the body harness and clipped on the leash. Kit scuttled beside him as he took the elevator downstairs and walked her around the block. Kent kept a slow pace and waited patiently until she was done sniffing whatever it was that caught her interest (which was anything from random strangers to a crack in the sidewalk).
He thought about taking her back to the dog park they were at last week, but then he remembered
how Kit’s enthusiasm over making new friends had had her chasing a Great Dane
that hadn’t appreciated her eagerness. Kent made a mental note to research if there were dragon play date groups in the Las Vegas area. Then, at least Kit could find someone to play with and Kent didn’t have to worry about her being too rough.
After about half an hour, Kit decided she was too tired to walk anymore. She dug her claws into Kent’s jeans and attempted to climb him like a tree. Wincing, he pulled her off and cradled her to his chest instead. “You are so spoiled, you know,” he said to her. She squeaked but looked smug as she burrowed into his chest.
Kent was only recognized once while he was out. He posed for a quick picture, thankful that his messy hair is hidden under a hat. The fan gushed over Kit for a couple of minutes before asking for photo of her too. Kit attempted to snap at the phone and Kent had to pull her back. “No,” he admonished. “Phones are not for biting.”
By the time he got back to his apartment, he was already sweating. He turned the air conditioning up a speed before stripping off and getting in the shower. He’d left the bathroom door open a crack in case Kit missed him, and sure enough, barely two minutes after he’d stepped in, he could hear her claws against the tile. Luckily, she knew better than to try and hop in now. She’d learned her lesson… the first ten times.
Kent was felt tired even though it was barely nine. He flopped on his couch as Kit dove into the shallow sand box he had sitting in the corner. She rolled on her back and kicked her limbs in the air. Kent chuckled, but then turned his attention to his TV. His plan was to not do anything productive today, and that included watching reruns of daytime talk shows and trashy soap operas.
The ill-timed doorbell rang just as he was about to find out which twin was father of Charice’s baby. He hoped it wasn’t the lady from down the hall who seemed to find an excuse to knock on his door at all hours. To Kent’s relief, it was only Jeff.
“Swoops,” Kent said in lieu of an actual greeting.
“Parse,” Jeff replied as he brushed past Kent, a brown bag with the logo of a local breakfast chain and coffee in one hand. He took a quick step back when when Kit rushed towards him, hissing and snapping. “You’ve gotta do something about that little gargoyle.”
“Don’t call her that,” Kent defended, but he did pick Kit up so Jeff could deposit himself on the couch. It was almost hilarious how something the size of a cantaloupe could intimidate Jeff who was well over six foot three. Kit was harmless… mostly.
“I know a demon when I see one. Why couldn’t you have gotten a cat or something?”
“Because she hatched in my living room. She thinks I’m her dad now.”
Jeff rolled his eyes in response. There was no convincing Kent.
Kit calmed down after a bit of stroking from Kent.
He put her back in the sand box
but her eyes remained trained on Jeff. She gave the uneasy impression that she was ready to pounce at any given moment.
“Any plans for the rest of the day?” Jeff asked, ignoring the dragon and hoping she would return the favor.
Kent stretched out, kicking his feet up on the coffee table even though his mother had raised him better than that. “Nope,” he answered. “Want to watch terrible movies and order food McDavidson would kill us for eating if he knew?”
The dimple on Jeff’s left cheek appeared as he grinned back. “Do you even have to ask?”
Is there a part 3? I don’t know. Possibly. Maybe. Stay tuned.
I love this dress so much and to go with its dreamy space theme, I made a bed time inspired coord! I even used nightwear items to help me out hehe~ 💕☁️🦄✨
I’m hoping to wear this out in summer when the ground will be dry!
Hair Accessories: dreamy bows, larme rose, nikki lipstick, chocomint, 6%dokidoki, electric sheep
Hair clips: H&M
Bedjacket: whites of Kent
Dress, bag, socks: angelic pretty
Bracelets: 6%, offbrand
i’m listening to a fahc ryan playlist rn and i just love that boy so much. like, fahc ryan who ran away from home at a young age bc of his shitty family and had to turn to shady means of making money in order to survive. fahc ryan who is severely mentally ill but has never been able to get treatment. he’s scared and angry and has no control over his own mind and it terrifies him. fahc ryan who kills anyone who shows any sort of care towards him, mostly out of panic bc it’s something he’s never experienced. he knows what manipulation is like and he has no trust in anyone but his abilities. fahc ryan who almost shoots geoff when he tries to recruit him. he has the gun to geoff’s head as mogar points his gun at ryan, but to ryan’s shock instead of being frightened, geoff fucking laughs. a loud, bold snort that has mogar putting his own gun away and folding his arms across his chest. he looks at ryan and tells him that he’s not scared of him. that’s the first time ryan’s ever heard someone say that. ryan grew up with psychopathic symptoms - he was isolated as a child because the other kids were scared of him, their parents would tell them to stay away from the scary loner who talks to himself under his breath and presses his hands over his ears. his parents kicked him out because they didn’t want a mentally ill kid, didn’t want the burden. and ryan’s furious for a moment bc who is this tosser and why doesn’t he hate him how dare he but he sees the kindness in geoff’s eyes and realises that they actually want him on the crew and they aren’t scared of him. fahc ryan who is so fiercely loyal and protective of the band of misfits he calls his family. he still has days when he can’t look anyone in the eye and his hands shake and he gets so angry at the affection the crew show him, but those days are lessening. fahc ryan who is mentally ill and is so so loved by his friends, who never treat him like he’s different. he gets the treatment he needs and, even though it will never really disappear, gets better and learns how to cope.
Kent wasn’t surprised when the lady at the counter told him that his flight had been delayed. Again.
“We’re very sorry for the inconvenience sir,” she said, her eyes weary and her smile tight around the edges. “We’re trying our best to get planes up in the air, but unfortunately the storm doesn’t seem to be letting up.”
“No, I understand,” Kent replied. “Thank you for checking for me again.”
The woman’s smile turned more genuine, though it still looked tired. Kent wondered how many assholes had already yelled at her for something that was way out of her control. Mother Nature did what she wanted, especially around the Holidays.
“Gate 38 will be quiet at this time of night if you want to try to catch some sleep. We’ll announce any changes over the loudspeaker but,” she grimaced. “I don’t see anything changing anytime soon. They called for a White Christmas and unfortunately they delivered.”
Kent laughed politely at her joke and wished her happy holidays, shouldering his backpack. He waved as he walked away from the counter, hoping that she’d at least get to go home to her family tonight.
It was the night before Christmas and Kent had stupidly put off travelling to his family in New York until the last possible minute. He had one last work project he wanted to finish before going on holiday so he could enjoy the family time without having to think about work but he’d forgotten to factor in the stupid weather on the East Coast and the fact that his luck was shit. His first flight from Vegas to Boston hadn’t had a problem but sometime during the layover, a storm had hit and most flights were grounded.
Kent pulled his phone out of his pocket, grimaced at the low charge, and called his mother. She’d been bugging him about coming out earlier than Christmas Eve whole week before as she’d seen the weather reports, but he’d been dumb and hadn’t listened. She picked up on the first ring.
“I’m not going to say ‘I told you so’,” she said.
Kent laughed slightly. “You probably should. Sorry ma.” He felt like he was a teenager again, getting scolded for not doing his homework again.
“Do you have a good book at least?” His mom’s voice softened.
“Yeah,” Kent sighed. He had finished it on the last plane though. Maybe he’d reread it.
“They’re saying it’ll be one of the biggest storms of the year,” she said.
“’They’ really suck.” Kent leaned back against the wall, out of the way of the many people running through the airport in hopes that if they hurry their flight might not be cancelled. He didn’t blame them for trying.
hey do you guys know how much it hurts to have to watch someone you love move on from you on social media? because it seems like a really simple and trivial thing but when you love someone who doesn’t love you back and more importantly loves someone else, all you can see is every tweet that they send to that person. You unfollow them and you blacklist usernames but then you end up navigating to their profile just to torment yourself. just to see how happy they are without you, how happy someone else is making them.
anyway, kent parson doesn’t use timehop for a reason.
Kent drops his bag by the front door on his way in, making his way into the kitchen. He scoops out the coffee grounds into a filter, adds water, presses the button. He grabs a protein bar from the cabinet he can barely reach above the oven, and shuffles through his apartment to his bedroom. He nudges the door open and kicks off his sneakers, glancing across the room to Kit settled comfortably on a pile of blankets. She stretches when she hears him enter, half awake and squinting at him in that way that cats so frequently do.
“Hey babe, what’s happening?” Kent mutters to Kit, taking a few steps to the bed before flopping down with a sigh.
Kit doesn’t say anything, because she’s a cat, so that makes sense.
“Practice was hell, none of the boys would listen to me, and Brenner was like, half an hour late. God, just because he’s in the pros he thinks he can show up whenever he wants!”
Kit doesn’t reply, but she nudges her nose under Kent’s arm.
“How was your day, though?” Kent asks, pulling Kit a little bit closer towards him, and she doesn’t protest. Kit meows softly. “I’m glad to hear it, babe.” He replies, and Kit purrs deeply.
Kit purrs, and Kent brushes his hand through her fur. He feels his eyes get a little bit itchy, and he regrets not taking a benadryl before he came home, but he can do that later.
“You’re a good listener,” Kent mumbles into the cat’s long grey fur, and slips into sleep.
Jack comes back from their latest debrief with hopes of taking a shower and spending the evening in bed with Kent, but what he actually gets is his partner shoving a duffel bag at him
“We have to go.” Kent says, and Jack vaguely recognizes the duffel as their go bag, their “just in case.” He can see their shared room torn apart behind Kent, but, a quick look says it wasn’t because there was a fight– Kent tore it apart himself.
“Did something happen?” Jack asks, sounding dazed, still trying to piece everything together.
“We have to go, Jack.” Kent says, trying to push him out the door. Jack’s bigger than him, though, and stronger enough for it to count, so he stays put.
“Kenny, what happened?” he asks again, voice gentle. Kent looks scared, looks terrified, and Jack can’t figure out why. Their last mission went well; they got the information W.E.L.L wanted and got out, and it had sounded like they were in for some time off, the way the council sounded during debrief.
“They’re gonna come for me.” Kent says, and Jack’s brow furrows further.
“Who’s gonna– Kent, come on, we’re fine. The mission’s over.” he says, and Kent shakes his head.
“W.E.L.L’s gonna come for me, Jack.” he says. Jack only frowns more.
“Why would they do that?” he asks. “We did good, we got what they needed to figure out who the leak was, and–”
“I’m the leak, Zimms!” Kent hisses.
Jack’s eyes go wide because he can’t be. He knew Kent had his problems with W.E.L.L and their tactics, but, he would never betray them like that, betray Jack like that. But, Kent isn’t smiling, isn’t saying anything else, and he’s still trying to push Jack out the door. “No,” Jack says, his voice sounding small and distant. “Kenny, Kent, no, you didn’t–”
“What they’re doing isn’t right.” Kent says, and the venom in his voice makes Jack want to throw up. “Jack, they’re coming for me– for us.”
“No.” Jack says, stumbling back. “No, no. Kent, come on, you can just– just apologize, or something, we can fix this–”
“It’s gone too far for that.” Kent says, sounding convicted and desperate at once. “Come with me. I know you don’t like what’s going on here, either; we can do good, Jack, without the political bullshit.”
“Kent,” Jack says, for lack of anything else to say. He can’t leave, but can’t let go; he can’t let Kent get away because of this, but he also can’t make himself surge forward and take him down like he should. If he did, Kent would go down easy; they don’t like fighting one another, and Kent wouldn’t want to hurt him.
Kent sees the war happening behind his eyes, and frown; he knows, has to know, that Jack isn’t going to be leaving without him having to say. “They’re not going to trust you, after me.” he says, a final plea. “You’re not going to be able to fix anything.”
“I have to try.” Jack says, and he drops the go bag. “Run.”
Kent stares at him for a long moment before he picks the bag up, and does.
It’s twenty minutes before they come looking for him, and find only Jack, curled up on the floor. “Hands behind your head.” someone says; Jack can’t see his face through the riot gear.
It dawns on him that they never intended to take Kent alive.