T-shirt fic

by 'rith

A thousand years ago, maneaterlad mused in chat: *wonders if Nightwing would ever wear a Superman T-shirt around Bruce*

There was supposed to be jealous tearing of clothing, but it turned gen on me and ended up not being much of anything. Posting before I nitpick it into the trash bin. *shrug*


Dick was wearing the shirt again.

THAT shirt.

The one with *his* symbol on it.

It wasn't that Bruce wasn't on some level amused by Dick's Superman idolization. It had been natural enough for an impressionable boy to be, well, *impressed* by his first sight of the Man of Steel. Particularly a young man just starting out in the same business, looking toward a hero who had already become an iconic symbol for all that was bright and good in their mutual occupation...as opposed to the Batman's necessary darkness.

But the *continued* adoration, once Dick had grown up and found that even (particularly) idols had feet of clay...that bothered Bruce more than he wanted to admit. Clark was admirable, yes, Clark was heroic. He was also naive, and too apt to think with his muscles, and--

And Dick had gone to *him* while searching for a new identity. Both of them, no doubt, thought he was unaware of the origin of Nightwing's name. But when had Batman ever failed to keep informed of the slightest detail, especially in regard to happenings in *his* sphere of influence?

He didn't begrudge Dick the name--it suited him. Nor did he resent Dick's association with Clark, occasional as it was.

It was just...that *shirt,* and its blaze of color so out of place in the gloom of the Batcave. Like a deliberate taunt. It *rankled.*

"There is more suitable workout gear on hand," he commented, aiming for neutrality, but Dick's smirk proved that he'd failed.

"This old thing? It's comfortable," Dick threw back, challenge in his eyes.

It would be...pointless to rise to the bait, not to mention petty. But in the monitors Dick's reflection danced through its routine, defying gravity with every fluid motion, the shirt no longer inappropriate in the least.

{300 words}

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