I think we all need to be brutally honest with ourselves and just ADMIT that Ritsu Kageyama probably plays D&D with online guides and imported books, and when he’s not DMing he plays as a dark brooding sorcerer elf named V'Yonn Darkwoode
She was popular.
She liked parties.
She was pretty.
He was a nerd.
She doesn’t notice him.
He worships the ground she walks on.
She was everything Harry wasn’t and won’t ever be. Everything he won’t ever have and he knew that. A girl like her would never go for a boy like him. The thing was that he was in no way like the other boys in school. He was shy and liked reading. He often begins to stutter a bit when he gets nervous. He blushes a lot. He doesn’t play football. He’s never had a girlfriend before. And of course the cool boys noticed everything that was ‘wrong’ about him. They picked on him every chance they got. Mocked him for his habit of pushing his glasses up his nose. Laughed when the words wouldn’t roll off his tongue. Shoved him into the lockers whenever they would walk past him in the hallway. The sad thing was that Harry didn’t defend himself. Ever. He just accepted the fact that he was awkward and nerdy and no one liked him. Especially not Y/N.
What he didn’t know though was that Y/N did like him. Yes, she was popular and pretty and boys swooned over her but she didn’t want any of them. She knew exactly what those boys were after, a bit of fun but never anything serious. And frankly Y/N wasn’t into those things at all. She wanted something serious. Someone who would hold her at night and be there in the morning, waking her up with kisses and sweet whispers. She wasn’t interested in those loud guys who were always talking and flirting and doing things she didn’t even want to know. And that’s why she noticed Harry. She liked his messy curly hair and his big, round glasses. She liked his green eyes and pink lips. She liked the oversized shirts and the jeans which were tighter than tight he was always wearing. She liked that he was shy and quiet. She liked that he was different than all the other boys. What she didn’t like about him though was that he never stood up for himself. It broke her heart when she saw him walking in the hallway with his head down and eyes locked on the ground and getting shoved into the lockers. She absolutely hated the frown that would form on his face and how he would rub his arm from the pain.
Today it was especially bad. They mocked and laughed at him even more in class and actually insulted him. She saw the way his eyes welled up with tears but luckily he quickly hid his emotions or else it would have gotten even worse. She’s never been more grateful for lunch after that lesson, not only because she couldn’t listen to another word her history teacher said but also because she knew Harry couldn’t listen to another mean thing those guys said to him.
Like always he was the last one to exit the classroom, getting a sympathetic smile from the teacher on his way out. He was glad when he saw that almost no one was in the hallway, he hurried to his locker and stuffed his things inside and just when he closed it he got smashed against it, his glasses falling to the floor from the force. He heard them laugh and calling ‘loser!’ after him. He sighed when he looked down at the ground and couldn’t see his glasses due to the blurriness of his sight. “Here.” he heard a female voice and knew immediately who it was. She gave him his glasses and their fingers brushed and Harry could feel a electric shock at his fingertip. “Thanks.” he whispered softly because he knew he would have stuttered other wise. He was embarrassed not only because he knew that she saw how he got shoved against his locker but also because again he had tears in his eyes. It was just too much today. Just as he pushed his glasses up on his nose the first tear dribbled down his cheek. “Hey.” Y/N whispered and reached up to brush it away. “Don’t let these idiots get to you, yeah? They’re just jealous.” Harrys eyes were glued to hers and his cheek burned in the most wonderful way from her touch. He couldn’t believe she was standing in front of him. Talking to him. “Why should they be j-jealous?” he shook his head. “Because they aren’t as smart as you. As cute as you.”
His eyes snapped to hers and widened with shock. Cute? Cute?! “Um, well.” she mumbled blushing and looked down at the ground. “Maybe you would want to get lunch with me? It always breaks my heart when I see you sitting alone.” she asked him hopefully. “Don’t think thats a g-good idea. D-Don’t want them to p-pick on you as well.” he shook his head, silently cursing himself for stuttering. “I don’t care what they say. They’re assholes. So what do you say?” “Y-You really want to spend time with me?” he studied her closely for any sign of doubt. “Of course I want to.” she nodded and so he agreed.
As they sat down across from each other, both with a chicken sandwich Harry couldn’t help but squirm. He felt all eyes on them, heard them talk. “They’re staring.” he let her know quietly. “Yep, ‘cause you’re cute.” she grinned at him. Again, Harry blushed and he heard a few people laugh at the color of his cheeks. “No. Because I’m weird.” he mumbled. “Harry, there is absolutely nothing weird about you.” God, she really knew his name. “I actually really like you because you’re different. You’re not stupid like them.” And that was the moment he decided to walk past. He was Y/N’s ex. He was considered the most popular and handsome boy in school. He was the worst of them all. “What the hell are you doing with him? Comforting him ‘cause he was about to pee himself ‘cause someone was mean to him?” Harry didn’t say anything and looked down at the table, his shoulders heaving with quick intakes of breath. “How about you shut up?” Y/N glared at her ex. He laughed and left, but not before 'accidentally’ hitting Harry’s shoulder. “God, he’s an asshole.” Y/N sighed. Harry didn’t look up from the table though, his eyes still set on whatever distracted him. The thing was that he wasn’t supposed to sit here. His place was in the corner of the room beside all the other nerds. His place was definitely not with her. “Harry?” she asked him and touched his hand softly with her own. Harry moved his hand to his lap so she couldn’t touch it, but the tingles the contact caused made their way through his arm nonetheless. “A-Are you trying t-to make fun of m-me?” “What?” “This is f-fun for you isn’t it? Why e-else would you be h-here?” “Harry, no. No, no, no. I’m not trying to make fun of you. No the slightest bit. I’m here because I like you and because I see what these people do to you. I want to be there for you.” Harry knew he should shut up. His heart was screaming shut up, shut up, shut up but his brain simply couldn’t make any sense of the situation. “Why? Why all of a-a sudden?” “Because I can’t keep watching them destroy you. You were crying today, Harry. They are hurting you. That needs to stop.” Harry didn’t say anything. He just stared at her. She was the girl of his dreams. He had a crush on her since year six when she had to give a speech in front of the class and was shaking so much she dropped her notes. She was the prettiest girl he’s ever seen. She couldn’t be serious. “Just let me help you.”
And that’s how their friendship started. Y/N drove him to school every morning and didn’t let him walk in the rain. She sat beside him in class and went to lunch with him. She glared at everyone who made fun of him. Yelled at those who were mean to him. And Harry was happy. Over the moon even. The mean comments stopped, the bruises on his arms faded and he had a friend. Y/N was an absolute sweetheart and made him feel so loved and cared for. Only that she didn’t care for him the way he cared for her. He had a crush on her before he knew her and now that he knew her he fell in love with her. And she would never do that, he was sure of that. She might like him but that’s it. She might find him cute but nothing more. Harry was fine with that as long as she would stay by his side. She made him happy, made him laugh and made him feel all warm inside. What was hard for him though was that she was so affectionate. She loved to play with his hands because they were so soft and warm and big and she just loved to hold them. She loved to hug him and she was one of those people who use their whole bodies while hugging, and Harry loved it. She loved to kiss him too, on his nose and cheek and shoulder and knuckles and just everywhere. And she caught on to his reactions. How he would blush and squirm slightly whenever it got a bit too much for him and every time she watched with delight. The thing was that she liked him a whole lot. So much that she was sure she was falling for him. She loved his little quirks and how awkward he was. She loved his shyness. She loved everything about him that he hated. Even though she kind of knew he felt the same way about her she was scared to do anything about it. She knew Harry had no experience with girls. She knew that he had no idea what to do and she was scared that if one of her kisses landed near his mouth he would run away. It was difficult. So, so difficult. She was scared and he was shy. Where was this supposed to go?
When Y/N was ill for a day because of bad stomach cramps and didn’t come to school Harry wasn’t concerned about him in the slightest but more for her. During the day he noticed though that he should be concerned. The boys treated him like they did before he got Y/N as a friend, if not even worse. He had a cut on his arm from where he got shoved against the lockers so hard that the metal sliced through his skin and he was feeling dizzy from all the insults he had to listen to. It’s never been that bad. And once he arrived at Y/N’s place with ice cream and heating pads and saw her lying in her bed, her eyebrows furrowed due to the pain he couldn’t stop his tears. They streamed down his cheek and sobs rocked his body and it was all too much. He dropped to the floor and hid his face in his hands so Y/N couldn’t see how weak he was. For Y/N he wasn’t being weak though. For her he was the strongest person she ever met. She made her way to him and enveloped him in a tight hug, swaying their bodies from side to side. She tried to calm him with little 'shhh’ sounds and kisses but it took time for his tears to stop streaming down his cheeks and his sobs to die down. But once they did he wrapped his arms around her body and hugged her tightly to his chest. He nuzzled his face into her neck, breathing her scent in and pressing one single kiss to her shoulder. He never did that before, never kissed her before. It was always her who kissed him but he never returned her displays of affection. Not that he didn’t want to but he was nervous. Her kisses made him nervous as well as how close she would be when her lips puckered into a pout to press against his skin. What Y/N didn’t know or didn’t notice was how his breathing would quicken when she got close to him. Sometimes he would gasp slightly for breath and sometimes he needed his inhaler. Lately more often than not. That was another reason why he wouldn’t kiss her. How awkward would it be if he tried to kiss her and then he couldn’t get any air in his lungs and- "Harry? Harry, hey. I can feel you panicking. C'mon let’s lay down.“ Y/N spoke softly to him and reached out her hand to help him up off the floor. Harry lied down in her bed and almost moaned at the smell of her pillow, he loved her shampoo. Y/N lied down beside him and cuddled herself against his chest, wrapping one arm around his waist. She kept her other hand in his hair, scratching his scalp and running her fingers through his soft curls. When she tried to get closer by lifting his arm and wrapping it around her body Harry hissed and Y/N knew it wasn’t because she grabbed him to hard because she never touched him with anything but love. She sat up immediately staring at Harry with shock. "Show me your arm.” she told him gently but with force behind her words. "I-It’s nothing, really. J-Just a scratch. You know Kitty jumps at m-me sometimes a-and she d-did earlier.“ "Harry, show me your arm.” Harry closed his eyes briefly and sighed. He sat up and pulled his oversized pullover off his body. She heard her gasp as she saw the cut. It wasn’t bad or too big but it did look a bit scary. "What happened? What did they do to you?“ she whimpered and traced her fingers over the wound. "The usual.” Harry shrugged and looked down. "Oh, darling.“ Y/N cried and hugged him again, so tightly this time that Harry had trouble breathing properly. "S'okay.” he mumbled into her neck. "Was just a bit m-much today. You weren’t there and I-I missed you and then they picked on me again a-and hurt me and then I s-saw you laying there in p-pain and it was just too much.“ She pulled back to look at him and stroked his hair from his face. She felt guilty. Guilty for leaving him alone when she knew exactly what would happen. "I’m sorry. So, so sorry. I should have never stayed at home and-” "S'not your f-fault. You were in pain t-today and I wouldn’t have l-let you go to school.“ Y/N sighed and nodded before she dropped her head to press her forehead against his. Harry could already feel his lungs struggling and his throat getting dry. "Harry, I have to tell you something.” she whispered softly and pulled back a bit. She took his hands in hers and stroked over his knuckles before she intertwined them. Then she took a deep breath. "I always found you cute, way before we became friends. I found it cute that you would blush a lot and stutter and I liked it that you weren’t as stupid as those other boys. It always broke my heart when those guys were mean to you and I absolutely hated how your eyes would turn sad and how your hands would begin to shake. And once we became friends I found you even cuter. I love how quirky and happy you are around me. I love how I can make you blush and squirm when I kiss you. I love to make you giggle. I love how caring you are. I love how sweet you are. I fell in love with you, Harry. And I would really like it if I could hold your hand in school and hug you in front of everyone without you pulling away because you worry they’ll talk bad about me. And I would really like to kiss you on the mouth. And I would really like to make out with you. And-“ "I love you, too. I-I love you so goddamn much. I’ve been in l-love with you for s-so long but never did anything because I was so s-scared but I love you. So much.” he blurted out and grinned at her with the brightest smile she ever saw. She grinned right back and hugged him quickly, giggling softly into his neck. Then she pulled back and cupped his face in her palms, stroking over his skin softly before she leaned down and pressed the softest kiss ever to his lips.
She pulled back a bit to see his reaction, his eyes were wide with shock and his lips parted. She touched her lips to his again, this time with a bit more force and longer, lingering against his. When she kissed him for the third time she suckled on his bottom lip gently and that was too much for Harry.
His heartbeat increased even more and his lungs felt like they were cramping, loud gasps leaving his mouth and panic flashing over his face.
Y/N got up from his lap immediately and reached into his backpack, searching for his inhaler. As soon as she had it she shook it and pressed it to his lips, Harry breathing in and immediately feeling relief wash over him.
“Better?” Y/N asked when he visibly calmed down and could breath almost normally again.
“Yeah.” he croaked out and closed his eyes for a moment to concentrate on his breathing.
Y/N rubbed his back in soothing circles, careful not to get too close to him so he wouldn’t start panicking again.
“What happened?” she questioned when he calmed down completely.
“Dunno.” he shrugged.
“Always happens when y-you’re close to me. Makes m-me nervous and then I-I can’t breath.” he sighed, his cheeks tinting pink.
“Is it because you don’t want me close?” she wondered.
“No, no. I want you c-close. All the time. B-But it’s the same with m-my stuttering, just happens.”
Y/N nodded and thought for a moment, her bottom lip bitten between her teeth.
“You should have told me you weren’t ready to kiss yet.”
“But I wanted to k-kiss you. I just n-never kissed anyone b-before so I d-don’t know what to do. Don’t want to e-embarrass myself.”
“Harry, you have nothing to worry about. It’s just me. It doesn’t matter if our teeth clash or it’s a bit sloppy. As long as I get to kiss you everything’s perfect.” she reassured him and stroked his cheek.
“Maybe w-we could try again? Without a panic attack?”
Y/N giggled and nodded, swinging one leg over his so she straddles his lap again and was in perfect position to kiss him again.
She cupped his cheeks and leaned in slowly, kind of letting him get used to the idea of being that close to her. Once their noses brushed she rubbed the tip of hers against his in a eskimo kiss before she tilted her head to the side and finally connected their lips. This time Harry followed her movements, doing what he thought he was supposed to do while kissing her. And Y/N appreciated him kissing back and wrapped her arms around his neck to get him closer.
She let him catch his breath then, making sure he was still okay. And he was. He definitely was okay.
He searched for her lips again as soon as she pulled back, pressing his lips to hers again and letting his feelings for her take over. The kiss was so intense that it sent electric shocks through both their bodies, their toes curling.
Once they both ran out of air because they kissed each other’s breath away the pulled back and smiled at each other with dopey smiles.
“Are you sure that was your first kiss?” she teased him.
“Pretty sure, yeah.”
“Then you’re a natural.”
“Think I need more practice though.” he grinned cheekily at her and kissed her lips over and over again.
Y/N squealed with joy, giggling against his mouth.
He didn’t stutter the last time he spoke and even though Harry paid no mind to it because he was too busy kissing his new girlfriend Y/N noticed. She also noticed that he wasn’t scared to embarrass himself anymore while kissing her, he let go of his fears and that was everything Y/N ever wanted him to do.
And she was more than happy that she was by his side during his journey.
Bruce isn’t particularly surprised when the plan goes fabulously to shit. At the end of it, Clark and Diana are the only ones not sporting some sort of wound and well, they’re cheating. Batman himself was hosting a broken arm similar to the one Alfred had put Jason under house arrest for only a week earlier. The Justice League was on call in northwest Nevada, far from Gotham. Bruce had set aside a weekend for it and, though the fight had ended in hours, was congratulating himself for that particular decision. Sleeping for a week sounds pretty good right about now.
He’s flopped over on the bed when Hal comes bursting into his room with Barry in tow, quite literally, bowling the door over.
Right. Bruce can’t have nice things.
“No,” he says prematurely, unwilling to mix himself up with whatever the idiot Lantern was planning. He didn’t feel like breaking another arm tonight.
“Aw, come on! We’re by Vegas, Spooky! Bad decisions await!”
Bruce, though it pains him greatly, deigns Hal a response. “No.”
The universe, because it hates him, does not take the hint to immediately teleport Hal to the Bermuda Triangle.
He feels the Lantern leaning over him, imagining the way his eyebrows would draw together and his lips would pinch and curve down in his signature frown. Bruce thought it made him look like a puppy. Bruce also thought puppies were rather adorable. (They had one at home that Damian had found in a storm, and Jason had taken it upon himself to name the little thing Spike Flufferton the Third). He wasn’t willing to draw the connection between those two notions.
“Hey,” Hal’s voice is softer, “Feeling okay?”
Bruce grunts, muscles protesting as he rolls on to his back, looking tiredly into Hal’s dancing eyes. Hal’s face contorts into the Puppy Frown again as he looks over Bruce’s arm. His fingers are gentle as he runs over the sling, checking it. Bruce distantly notes Barry’s sudden absence.
“You took a pretty bad hit out there. Fracture?”
Bruce nods. “M’fine.”
Hal’s face splits into a devious grin and Bruce suddenly regrets every decision he’s ever made leading up to this very moment. “Well then,” Hal grins, “You should be good for a night on the town, right?”
It takes everything in Bruce not to punch Hal in the face as the galactic superhero chuckles above him. “I’m joking, Bruce. You look like you could use the rest.”
It’s an out if he’s ever heard one, and really, Bruce should take it. He wants to take it. He doesn’t take it. “I’m not getting any rest while you’re around, Jordan, might as well.”
Hal shrugs, moving to the doorway where Barry has magically reappeared, and fixed the door too, it seems.
Diana and Arthur join them in the lobby, Arthur still looking a bit out of place as he always does. It might be the Atlantian thing. It also might be the vivacious Hawaiian shirt he’s wearing. Bruce thinks it’s rather unfair that he has to look at colors that bright only two hours after getting thrown into a building. Clark is the last to meet them and it’s fairly evident that Oliver isn’t joining them, but Bruce side glances Hal anyway.
“You know how he is with drinking,” Hal says, and just Bruce nods, jaw tightening and resisting the urge to do something stupid when he reads the pain in Hal’s eyes.
It starts with the pink martini. Clark, unsurprisingly, doesn’t go for hard liquor, Kryptonian physiology notwithstanding. Not that he didn’t normally, but one could never be too safe when it came to Vegas.
A blonde in a fetching Harley Quinn outfit (It literally takes Barry pouring ice on Bruce’s head to unroll his eyes, where can he go that Gotham won’t follow) takes certain interest in Clark of The Pink Martini’s and decides to put something in his drink. He notices, of course, but he’s familiar with the compound and his alien DNA prevents its effects from taking place. The martini chain continues. Now, this young Harley Quinn is absolutely astounded at the tolerance of this man, considering she had put a roofie in his last thirteen martinis. She wasn’t even trying to hide it anymore.
Eventually, this draws the attention of the rest of the bar and Clark attempts to bow out. But it’s Vegas, the one place Bruce would contend bore citizens more catastrophe-acclimated than those of Gotham, so the bartender keeps pushing martinis at Clark, regardless of whether or not he’s drinking them. This leaves the rest of the Justice League, excluding Diana who had been drawn to the flashy colors of the dance floor and the flashier yet eyes of the woman whirling at its center, on the opposite side of the bar, making their own drinks since the rest of the building’s patrons seem occupied by Clark. Arthur has long since abandoned them for the classy wet bar across the street.
“Try this,” Hal giggles, holding a brownish-red liquid in front of him. The Lantern has been tipsy since he eyed the bottle of premium bourbon resting so invitingly on the bar counter. He’s been mixing Bruce suspiciously colored drinks for the past fifteen minutes. Bruce thinks it says a lot about his tolerance that he actually drinks them.
That tolerance doesn’t last forever, however, and soon enough, Hal Jordan, number one pilot at Ferris Aircraft, and Bruce Wayne, rich boy and most famous Gothamite to ever live (excluding his alter ego), are doing a terrible rendition of the salsa atop the bar. Barry, who has only had one drink with no effect due to the speed of his body systems, their designated Stop-The-Justice-League-From-Revealing-Their-Identities-In-A-Drunken-Stupor guy of the night, is taking a video with an expression that pretty much says this is the best night of his life. He gets them down eventually, when Hal has said the word ‘green’ too many times for him to be comfortable, and lets them curl up under the bar counter’s ledge while he goes to save Clark and find Diana. Of course, when he returns, they’re gone.
“Fuck.” The disembodied voice sounds right next to Bruce’s ear and he makes a disgruntled noise as it ricochets through his head. The Voice, deciding it was hell-bent on making his pounding headache worse, continues to make sounds, and Bruce distantly wonders if it’s possible to reach a plane of existence where he can punch someone in the voice.
Even with his head swimming, Bruce comes to his senses eventually, lifting himself with great effort and flopping sideways, coming face to face with Hal Jordan. The Lantern’s eyes widen as he takes in Bruce and seems to come to the conclusion that one of them stumbled into the wrong room last night after their ventures along the strip. Hal blinks a few more times, face pinching in the way Bruce knows to associate with a headache. He desperately wants to let sleep claim him once more, but he also knows that they should probably figure out what happened last night. Making the decision for him, Hal pushes his face into the warmth of Bruce’s neck, bare minutes passing before his body relaxes with sleep. Bruce has little choice but to follow suit.
When they wake next, they are, for one thing, significantly more tangled. For another, there’s a pitcher of appallingly colored hangover juice on the bedside table of what can now be discerned as Bruce’s room, a note from Barry resting next to it.
Drink up and call me when you’re both feeling up to it. I already told your families you’d probably need a day. Also, Bruce, I’m really sorry, but your kids extorted me for pictures because of an Incident involving Wally and Bart. - Loving friend who does not want a Batarang in his chest, Barry
Hal looks up from where he’s leant against Bruce’s shoulder, having read the note. “Please don’t put a Batarang in my best friend’s chest.”
Bruce considers this. “He’ll heal.”
“Crazy fucking rich boy,” Hal mutters, rolling his eyes at Bruce’s raised eyebrow.
They drink the juice in relative silence, swallowing the vile concoction with some difficulty. It does dissolve the excruciating pain so, tradeoffs.
“Hey,” Hal says, a little panicked, “We kissed last night.”
Bruce nods, “We did.” They had. It was nice. Bruce’s mind was drifting to the puppy analogy and he forcefully brought it back.
Hal bites his lip. “Thing is, I can’t remember why.”
Bruce frowns, thinking the statement over. He remembers the soft slide of Hal’s lips against his, the pair of them tasting like liquor and blood and a bit of something burning. Hands in his hair, arms around his neck, a body pressed snug against the line of his. All this, Bruce remembers with startling clarity, dutifully ignoring the way his heartrate picks up at the memory. But the context of it, he can’t place. He squints at the wall, running the events of the night through his head.
They had left the bar, laughing secretively at their refractory of Barry’s wishes, stumbling along the length of the strip and pointing at things. The colorful fountain show of the Bellagio (“Rainbow!” Hal had observed happily, “Like Kyle!”), the pyramidal structure of the Luxor, the verdant glow of MGM Grand (“Like me,” Hal had said, still smiling).
And then—and then they’d somehow found themselves at the Chapel of Flowers.
“Hey,” Hal was laughing; he was always laughing. It was beautiful.
“Hey, Bruce. Look.” He pointed to the wrought iron of the chapel’s gates. “It’s so pretty.”
Bruce tilted his head, observing. It was pretty. He turned to look at Hal instead. “You’re pretty.”
Hal laughed again. His hands came up on either side of Bruce’s face and he held his gaze, mouth curved in an open-mouthed smile.
Their foreheads touched. “I should be saying that.” Hal licked his lips, eyes flickering to Bruce’s own.
“I like you. A lot. You’re so—you’re so you, Spooky.”
“Oh,” Bruce said. “Me too.”
Hal grinned. “Hey, Bruce,” he said for the third time that night. “Let’s get married.”
They whip around to look at each other simultaneously.
“Oh my God,” Hal whispers. “Oh my God, Bruce we’re married.”
“We kissed at the wedding,” Bruce says, just as awed, but more at his apparent sheer lack of judgment.
Hal puts his head in his hands, keeling sideways to drop his weight against Bruce.
“God, we are Those People. The people who actually get shitfaced in Vegas and get hitched while severely intoxicated.”
“We’re fucking crazy, Bats. We are absolutely insane.”
“We’re not the first,” Bruce provides.
“We’re the first League members,” Hal groans.
“Actually,” Bruce starts, but Hal shakes his head, burrowing into Bruce’s shoulder.
“No. Nope. I can’t take this kind of information right now, I am hungover.”
They’re silent for a time.
“What happened to your sling?” Hal asks, fifteen minutes later, still tucked disbelievingly into Bruce’s shoulder.
Bruce looks down, noticing for the first time the neon purple sling that seemed to have replaced his previous, less conspicuous black one. ‘Stephanie’s suggestion’ is written across it in black Sharpie. Bruce sighs.
Hal hums, amused, before lifting his head to finally look at Bruce.
Hal hesitates, before continuing, voice soft. “Did you mean it?”
Bruce knows what he’s referring to.
“…Yes. Did you?”
Hal scoffs. “Obviously. Have you seen yourself?”
Bruce laughs, a low, short thing that had once been hidden exclusively for his children. The Justice League had become another sort of family for him, coaxing emotions and responses he wasn’t used to, and ultimately gaining his trust.
Hal looks at him like he’s the center of the multiverse and Bruce isn’t sure what to do about that, so he stares back.
“Can I kiss you?” Hal licks his lips.
Bruce leans forward, answer written in the movement of his body.
“I can’t believe this.” Hal has been absolutely insufferable since he caught Bruce in the horror of a Christmas sweater his children had begged him into.
Bruce scowls, “I’m getting a divorce.”
“Sure you are, beautiful.” Hal winks, leaning forward to press a kiss against the corner of his boyfriend’s lips.
Bruce rolls his eyes, relaxing unconsciously against Hal as they listen to the sound of the kids attacking the manor with a variety of (questionable) Christmas decorations.
“B!” Jason calls from the doorway, “Where’s the box of candy cane knives?”
Bruce, ignoring Hal mouthing, ‘What the fuck,’ ,directs his second son to the attic.
Thinking better of it, he calls, “Hold on, Jay. You and Damian aren’t allowed in the same room as those.” He turns to Hal, an amused smile playing on his lips, “Can you grab them?”
Hal grumbles without any heat behind it. One time you grab a bowl of popcorn from across the room with your magic ring, and suddenly everyone wants a favor.
“I do all the work in this family.”
Bruce laughs, slipping out the doorway to chase after his son, and Hal is struck by how beautiful a sound that is.
Vegas, as it turned out, was good for something after all.
author’s note - asdhkjhs this was written super fast because i was bored and thinking about batlantern. i hope y’all enjoyed <3, okay bye.
One of the asks I get more often is about how to approach tattoos
for the first time. What to have, where, from who, what to expect,
how to deal with the artists and more, a lot of people are
still a bit scared and confused from the whole tattoo thing. Most
of the time their asks can have no answer, since things like
subjects, placement, paint tolerance etc. are all pretty personal. But I’ll try to put down some guidelines, mixed with personal
experiences, that will hopefully help makes things less stressfull
and confused at least for someone.
(pic: Rodrigo Souto at work. Black outlines are usually tattooed first, then the black shading. Colors cames last. )
Is it the right time for it? Usually, if you are underage, you can’t get
tattooed without parents permission. I suppose it changes from one
country to another, depending on the laws. Legal or not, getting a
tattoo when you are still really young will reveal a bad idea most of
the times. Even if you get tattooed from a pro, even if your tattoos
looks good, there’s a high probability your taste will change soon,
and so will your life priorities. At 14 I was impressed from
Clooney’s tattoos in From Dusk Till Dawn. I was convinced a tribal
bodysuit was a badass option. Then, a few times later, I thought Tom
Gugliotta’s (what was I thinking? He wasn’t even that good as a
player… :D) barbed wire armband was really cool too. At eighteen I
though that let an apprentice tattooer I knew doing both my arms in
his kitchen for a hundred bucks was a great idea. None of that
happened, lucky me. Times were different, there was no internet (I
mean of course there was, but it wasn’t like it is now), the only
chance to know something about tattoos were through the magazines. I
had my first tattoo at 24. A bit late, I know, I’m not suggesting you
to wait that much. But still, even if I had it from a really good
artist and still looks good, it’s not in the style I’m into now.
Will your tattoos affect your social interactions and your career?
Yes and no. The older you are, the more you know about how you’ll
live your life. But being tattooed brings no more the prejudices it
used to. People are slowly getting used to them. I mean, if you want
to run a bank, a face tattoo will probably be still an obstacle. But
if you live in a big city, probably no one will ever stare at you for
a small tattoo on your arm. My first tattoo was on my shoulder/chest,
it doesn’t show even if I’m wearing a t-shirt. I went for an easy
to hide area mostly to show my parents how wise and focused on the
future I was. It wasn’t true, of course, but it helped. ;)
Ok, so just pretend you are old and wise enough for a tattoo.
Where do you start?
(pic: Portrait from Dan Molloy. If you want one, be sure to bring a reference pic that is big enough to show all the details your artist will need)
Chosing the right artist What style are you into? It can be
hard to decide at first, but the more you look at good tattoos, the
more your taste for them will be defined. This can probably help too. And then you have to find the right artist. If you want to get
tattooed, no doubt this will be the biggest challenge, and probably
the most important. This choice will affect not only the final
result, but the whole experience. A good artist, in a safe, positive
environment, will make the whole journey something you’ll like to
How do you know an artist is the one? It’s hard to say. Your
taste, your knowledge, needs to be trained, a lot, to be able to tell
a good artist from a mediocre one. I’ve “studied” this things for
years. my nerd side definitely helped, and now a few pics of someone’s works are enough for me to know if an artist is someone to consider o not. Drawing skills are a good start, but I look for
someone with good taste for colors, compositions, visual art in
general. Roses are usually a good test. Or woman faces. If you want
to find someone good, be prepared to go through tons of crappy
portfolios. Or you can drop me a line, it can be helpful too. ;)
(pic: Dane Mancini tattooing free hand. Sometime the artists can draw the whole design (or a few details of it) on the skin with a marker, following their ceativity)
The subjects and the placement I get a lot of asks about what
to get tattooed too. No one can tell you what you should wear on your
skin. Look for good art, and just get inspired. And then a good
artist will help you to turn your ideas into something pleasant to
look and to wear.
Let’s skip fast the “should I bring the design?” part. The
answer is a big no. Even if you are amazing at drawing. Even if it
does have a deep meaning for you cause your best friend draws it. No.
Tattoo designs are different from drawings for a ton of reasons. Let
tattoo artists do their job.
When you are considering a subject, don’t fill the concept with
too much stuff. I mean, you want a ship, and a lighthouse, and an
anchor, and a rose. It’s already more than you need. Don’t ask the
artist to add a dagger, and a dog, and your grandma’s name, and your
first bike, all on the same design. The less you put into it, the
more he/she will have the creative space to create something great.
If you want a text, please reconsider it. And read this first.
And please, forget all the tv shows shit about how everything you
get tattooed must have a sad story, a deep meaning behind it, how
every detail must be symbolic and represent something. Like
if you want a rose, and you love your family, you don’t need a single
petal for each brother/sister/cousin/dog. Just have a good looking,
damn rose. The meaning behind it will be as strong as your intention,
no matter what.
You have a sad/positive reason to get tattoed? Great. You don’t?
Who cares. Tattoos looks great, and this is the only reason you need.
(pic: Matt Adamson’s design. On the left, the stancil he used to have a trace of it on the skin.)
Book for it. If the shop is close to you, go talk them in
person. Someone will take care of you. A phone call is a good idea
too. Or send the shop an email. Messages on facebook are usually a
bad way to get in contact with them. If you still get no answer after
a reasonable time, keep trying, don’t be afraid to insist. Sooner
or later, you’ll talk with the artist. Tell him/her what you want,
the mood you want your piece to have, what you would like him/her to
include, what you like from his/her past works. You can bring
references, if you think it would help. Bringing pics of other
people’s tattoos as a reference is ok, until you just use them to
explain what you want. Asking to copy someone alse’s tattoo is wrong,
unethical and pretty lame.
Be prepared to tell them about size and placement. It’s ok to have
clear in mind what you want, but when an artist suggest you to change
something, is usually for a reason, so try to be open minded about
it. Some tattoos can be completed on a single session, some will need
more. You need to heal completely, before the artist can continue to
work on it, so be prepared to wait at least a few weeks before you
can have a new session. Some artist will send a sketch to you days
before your appointment, to check if you are ok with it. But it’s not
rare to see them finish it while you are already at the shop to get
tattooed. Yes, even if you booked for it months before. If you don’t
like the design, just ask the artist to change it. But don’t forget
they are already working for you, and don’t forget to be respectful.
(pic: Stu Padgin’s print. Go through the artists’ sketchbook if you have the chance to. They usually have tons of great designs still available)
Be ready for it. If you have done everything as
you should, you have nothing to fear about. Protect your skin from
sun, a tanned, burned skin can’t be tattooed. Eat something before to
start, bring something to drink, but stay away from alcohol from 24h
at least. It would cause your blood vessels to dilate, and the tattoo
to bleed more. The blood would make harder for the artist to work and
to get the ink going deep enough to stay. Bring a friend to the shop
with you only if ou really need too (you won’t, trust me), and never
more than one. You want your artist to be confortable and focused
while is working on you. From now on, it’s up to him/her.
“Does it hurt?”
Yes, it does. How much? It’s impossible to say. Some areas are
usually more painful than others, but it depends on your skin, your
muscolar conformation, your pain tolerance. Usually, it’s always a
pain you can tolerate. Try to focus on your breath, and keep your
body relaxed. The less you shake, the easiest will be for the artist
to do his/her job. If you need a break, just ask for it.
If the pain is a serious issue for you, just don’t let it be your
only concern while you are considering the placement. Of course,
starting from your ribs it’s probably not a great idea, but classics
spot like arms, legs, or shoulders are good under both the
aesthetical and pain aspects. Even if you want a sleeve, you don’t
need to plan it from the beginning. If you are not sure of how your
body will react, just start with something smaller, and on a less
1 - Be sure a tattoo it’s what you want, Consider your lifestile, and the one you wish to have. Keep in mind you’ll need money for it, and it will be painful. Be aware of all the negative and the positive a tattoo will bring in your life. There is nothing to be ashamed of in starting with something small, or on a hidden area, if you need to.
2 - Don’t go for a cheap one. A tattoo it’s a life committment, and you deserve the best you can have, even if it will take time to find it. Search, get informed, define your taste. And then book with the best.
3 - Let the artist do his/her job, but still be part of the process. Talk to your artist, let him/her involve you in the creation of your piece. Your tattoo will be meaningful and unique.
4 - Be prepared to the pain, but don’t let it scare you. Be conscious but relaxed and confident. Trust your ability to overcome pain, understand that it’s part of the process, and enjoy the experience for what it is.
5 - Take care of your skin and tattoos! Follow your artist’s instruction, keep it clean, and don’t be afraid to ask the shop for help if you think something is not as it should.
And that’s it, I think. Don’t be afraid.It’s always worth it. ;)
So why do some fanfictions portray Nancy as kind of an airhead, or Mike being the nerd of the family, or whatever, when we SEE that she clearly, obviously cares for her grades and schoolwork???? When we see her studying, when Steve mentions that her GPA is like “3.999…” I mean, honestly. That girl is a genius and will definitely stay that way.
You really couldn’t wait until you graduated. Just one and a half more years, and you would be out of this hell-hole for good.
The autumn term of year 11 had begun only a few days ago, and your math teacher had blasted through at least three new concepts. You hoped that someone would be there to help you, but even your friend, Kim Jisoo, seemed to be struggling as much as you were.
You glared out your window, your earbuds blasting the newest music you were into. You were trying to ignore your brother and new step-brother, as well as your father and Heidi. The boy in the middle of the seat, Evan, was practically radiating anxiety. He would never say it aloud, but you reminded him of Connor Murphy.
You felt a tap on your shoulder and you glanced to your left, seeing your brother Jeremy looking at you and gesturing towards Heidi. He had snuck his arm above Evans’s head to tap you gently.
“What?” You said, pulling your earbuds out of your ears.
“I asked, are you excited to start senior year?” She glanced at you in her side mirror.
“No.” You grunted honestly, making Evan glance at you with curiosity, then back at his fidgeting hands. You were the oldest sibling in this now conjoined family, a few months older than Evan and a year ahead of Jeremy.
You slouched slightly as you saw Heidi’s face fall at her attempt to make peace with you. You hated this new change in your family. You hated almost all change.
“Alright, kids. We’re here at our new home!” Your dad grinned, parking the car. You opened the door and tried to keep yourself calm, you wanted to yell and cry and try to reason with your dad. You stepped out and scrunched your face up in disgust as you glanced at the new house. Your father and Heidi had gone out of their way to already unpack almost the whole house, except for your rooms.
“Do you like it, (y/n)? Jeremy?” Your dad asked hopefully.
“Yeah, dad, we love it.” You mumbled, not wanting him to feel bad. You started walking into the quite large house, looking around at the way your father and step mother had decorated. You heard footsteps behind you so you turned around to see Heidi smiling sadly.
“Hi, honey.. I know you don’t really like me, but I hope we can be like mother and daughter eventually.” Heidi smiled sadly, like she knew everything about you. Your face fell and you subconsciously tugged down on your sleeves, feeling slightly bad.
“I don’t dislike you, Heidi. I dislike change.” You mumbled, turning around and going up the stairs. Once again you heard footsteps behind you, practically running to keep up with your long strides.
“Can you believe we have to share a room?” Jeremy snorted, following you into your room.
“Yeah, I know. How will you ever have sex with Michael again?” You said dramatically, laughing and bending down to start unpacking a box.
Jeremy turned bright red and started to unpack on his side as well.
“No, but really? We couldn’t just get a house so every kid gets their own room?” Jeremy mumbles.
“I’m fine with sharing a room with you. I’d rather share with you than Evan- not because I don’t like the kid or anything, I just don’t want to make him uncomfortable, y'know?” You grunted, making your bed.
“With all your satanic posters and crystals, you make me uncomfortable.” Jeremy joked.
“No, we um, actually really need a curtain to separate the room in two.”
“Most definitely, you nerd.” You agreed, watching him hang up a Pacman poster.
You were sitting on your bed listening to music one day when the curtain between the room was ripped open.
“H-hey, can we have like, three friends over?” Evan giggled, making Jeremy hit his arm and laugh as well.
“Um, sure?” You asked, raising your eyebrows. It was date night for your dad and step-mom, meaning you were in charge.
“O-okay, good! Because they’re already here!” Jeremy laughed, probably high.
“Come chill with us!”
Evan and Jeremy had managed to grab your arms and drag you down the stairs and into the gaming room.
“Hi, (y/n)!” Michael laughed, waving at you. The whole room smelt like weed. There were two boys on the couch who you had seen before, but never cared to talk to.
“O-okay! These are my friends Jared,” Evan grinned, pointing to one boy. “And Connor!” He pointed to another boy.
“Sup, hot stuff!” Jared said tipsily, winking at you. He had a beer in front of him, and another one in his hand. Connor was sitting quietly and smoking weed. He waved slightly at you, and you turned pink.
“Hey,” you laughed, sitting down on the couch and grabbing a beer. “Who brought the weed this time, Michael?”
Jared, Connor, and Evan looked a little shocked you didn’t get mad. Michael laughed and blew smoke into the air.
“Actually, Connor brought it!” Michael giggled, leaning into Jeremy.
“Sweet.” You giggled, taking a hit and glancing at Connor. Connor turned a deep red under your gaze and he shifted uncomfortably.
You liked the way he would glance at you and turn red all throughout the night. The way he would shift and gently lean on you when he talked to you.
“Oh my god, oh my god! We should play Just Dance!” Jeremy cries, standing up quickly and stumbling towards the Wii. “We only have four controllers, though!”
“I’ll sit out.” You and Connor both offered at the first time, glancing at each other. You smirked as the other four started to dance drunkenly.
“Hi.” You giggled, scooting closer to Connor. Connor stared at you, furrowing his eyebrows.
“Hi?” He muttered, his face turning a pale pink. You leaned on him slightly, mumbling your next sentence.
“How come we’ve never spoken before?” You smirked at him as Evan turned around and hit Jeremy, both of your younger brothers now staring at you flirting with Connor.
“Holy shit?” Jeremy whispered, glancing at Evan then back at you.
“It worked?!” Evan whisper shouted, jumping happily. Michael and Jared glanced back at you and Connor as Evan and Jeremy pulled them out of the room.
“You were intimidating.” Connor mumbles, taking a sip of his beer.
“And you aren’t?” You joked, tilting your head.
“True. But I mean you are so pretty, it’s almost intimidating.” Connor crossing his arms after he sets the beer down on the coffee table.
“Oh, you’re the hot, brooding type of intimidating, Connor.“ You giggled, mocking him by crossing your arms. He pouts slightly, making you giggle even more.
The four boys were watching you and Connor from the kitchen, drunk amazement on their faces. “They should just date already.” Jared snorts.
“We heard that.” You giggled, glancing behind you and growing a bit tired.
“Oh-oh my god!” Jeremy cried, glancing at a text message. “Mom and dad are going to be home soon!”
Your eyes widened and you launched up from your seat. “How long?” You asked, suddenly wide awake.
“Five minutes!” Jeremy read, glancing up at you then at Michael.
“Super speed mode!” The three of you shouted like dorks, each of you launching into action. You were throwing away beer cans while Michael hid the bongs, throwing the weed at Connor. Jeremy ran into the bathroom and came out with a giant bottle of febreze, practically choking everyone while he sprayed it. Evan and Jared started to sweep and vacuum the floors, picking up all the dropped food. Connor started to do the dishes, cleaning all of the snack bowls and silverware. Everyone moved surprisingly fast for being drunk, high, or both.
“Okay, kiddos! Get your sleeping bags out and pretend to be asleep!” Everyone rolled out their sleeping bags and crawled in, except for you. You sat on the couch and pretended to be exhausted. You had purposely placed a bag of popcorn on the floor, along with a few pieces in between the boys, so it didn’t seem suspicious.
“Hi honey,” Heidi smiled at you, ruffling your hair and speaking softly. “How did everything go?”
“Good,” You smiled up at her and glanced at your father.
“Why does it reek like febreze?” He mumbled, squinting slightly.
“Oh,” You laughed nonchalantly. “The step-bros keeps farting up a storm.”
You were surprised when none of the boys on the floor broke out in laughter, since you did giggle to yourself. Your father and Heidi wished you a goodnight. When they closed their bedroom door, all of the boys sat up in sync.
“Really, (y/n)? We keep farting?” Jeremy mumbled, making Michael and Jared laugh and agree it was true.
“God damn, that was smooth. Lying on the spot like that, that was kinda hot.” Connor flirted, raising his eyebrows at you. He was drunk, and definitely high.
“Connor- please, stop, that’s my sister.” Evan complained, laughing slightly.
“You’re right, Evan, they should save it for the bedroom!” Jared snorts, earning a kick from you.
“Wait, how come I didn’t know about this sleepover until a few hours ago?” You questioned, making all of the boys go quiet.
“Goodnight!” Jeremy laughed, flopping into his sleeping bag. The other boys followed his lead, all except for Connor.
“Night, babe.” Connor smirked, laying down and drifting off the sleep. You shook your head and laughed, blushing slightly.