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Fearless on my breath

by Te

[Story Headers]

Fearless on my breath
by Te
July 19, 2004

Disclaimers: So very much not mine.

Spoilers: Vague ones for "Sins of the Father," "Never Fear," and "Growing Pains." That's right, toon-fic.

Summary: Tim's pretty psyched about his life, all things considered.

Ratings Note: NC-17.

Author's Note: Well, this was meant to be a kissing snippet, but it kind of grew. Now it's just an even more blatant excuse for porn.

Acknowledgments: To LC, Shrift, and Livia for audiencing.


Sometimes, Bruce looks at him.

Well, Bruce is always looking, and Tim hadn't had to find all the tracers on his suit to know that, because Bruce? Is freaking paranoid.

Even more than someone like him should be.

But since Bruce is also Batman, usually Tim can mostly forget that he's looking and just do his thing, because Bruce is.... Sometimes Tim thinks about his Dad (mostly it doesn't hurt. Not as much as it did), and how quietly he moved, and how his hands had these really narrow, smart fingers, and how he'd taught Tim how to pick a lock before he'd learned how to read, but the thing is?

His Dad got caught. Like, all the time.

And not by Batman, either -- just normal freaking cops.

His Dad probably would've given up a kidney to be sneaky like Batman, or maybe sold Tim to white slavers or whatever.

Sometimes Tim looks down at himself, at his hands in the black gauntlets that Bruce and Alfred made for him, the gauntlets that fit better than any clothes he ever owned before Bruce brought him here, and he realizes...

He's better at this than his father ever was, too.

And that's something he doesn't like to think about, because being over it isn't the same as being over it, and it feels.

Anyway, it's not important. The important thing is that as good as his father was, he's better. And as good as he is, Bruce is better.

So it's really something kind of huge when he does catch Bruce looking. Because... well, for one thing, he isn't sure if he could ever actually handle being as good as Bruce at this stuff -- watching him lose it to Scarecrow's no-fear gas was bad enough -- but also because it kind of feels like a test.

Something smaller than "is Tim going to hit this guy hard enough to take him down but not hard enough to permanently damage him" (because that's just as huge as it should be, he thinks), but bigger than the other things. Like escaping out of ropes or chains or cuffs, or learning how to hold himself up off the ground with one hand for long periods of time (because one day that's going to save his life).

Somewhere in the middle of all that is the way Bruce looks at him, and... and probably the fact that Tim sees it.

That Bruce is letting him see it.

There's a question there that may or may not have anything to do with the questions in his head, and may or may not have anything to do with the way he can't always get to sleep on his mandatory nights off or on his nights on.

When he can feel the sun reaching for him, trying to tell on them like a big yellow narc, just waiting to find his eyes open in the not gloomy-enough gloom, staring up at the high, high ceiling that doesn't even have any cobwebs that he can see, trapped in the middle of the huge, soft bed that he still sometimes has trouble thinking of as his.

When he's hard and sweating and jerking himself until it hurts, until he's sure his hand will never stop smelling like come.

Like maybe he's going to make the next little old lady Billionaire Bruce Wayne introduces him to fall down and faint and die.

When he laughs at night, alone in this bed, it sounds strange.

Not because there's no one around, or because he's afraid of waking up any ghosts or anything (it's not that he doesn't believe in ghosts -- it's that there are all kinds of other things to be afraid of), but because he's alone.

Because he can feel Bruce's eyes on him even though he's not there.

And it's not like... that.

He doesn't think it's like that.

Because he had about three hours to think of Bruce as cool, and about three weeks to think of Bruce as really freaking odd and scary and annoying, and the whole rest of this time to think of him as Bruce.

The man whose eyes can tell you to fuck off and die, or tell you that he's as proud of you as he can be, or tell you nothing at all.

Or maybe it's just like the rest of it -- he's been here long enough, around long enough to know that most people don't have clue one what Bruce's eyes are saying, even when they're smart like Dick. You have to pay attention. You have to think about it.

So maybe when those eyes aren't telling him anything, they're really just saying something he doesn't have words for yet.

Or words he hasn't said out loud.


Tim licks his teeth and gives himself a squeeze. Twice tonight and yeah, he gets that he's a healthy teenager, and it's going to be like this for a while. He wishes he could get to sleep -- he hates being tired during the day for any reason but a night out with Batman -- but he's also kind of grateful for it.

In the beginning, on his nights off, Bruce used to come in to check on him. And part of it was just making sure he was okay, he knows this, but part of him is -- was sure that it was also to make sure he hadn't run off with any silverware or anything. And there's another part that was just kind of...

It makes his gut seize up a little. Makes his dick twitch for (more) attention.

Bruce doesn't come in anymore, even though Tim doesn't close the door all the way (it's not like the Manor is loud), and it's not like you can really hear those sneaky-perfect footsteps unless he wants you to -- even less than usual because the carpeting is better than his old mattress -- but it's a feeling.

Like the air is heavier, like maybe the whole house is waiting for something, eyes narrowed to slits and okay, maybe the Manor still freaks him out a little.

It's the good kind of freaking. Horror movies and roller coasters and huge thugs running at him, running right into whatever trap he's set for them. Like right now.

All that presence just beyond his door. And it's not dawn yet, so there's no way to know for sure that the deeper shadow in the shadow is Bruce, no way to pick the shape of him out of the darkness.

Except that he knows, and he knows Bruce. The size and shape of him. Tim's small. He's always been small, and probably always will be. He's used to the way it seems like most everyone in the universe just towers over him. But there's a difference. Bruce is more solid, more real than any of them.

He can't knock Bruce down with a well-aimed kick.

And he can hear the clock ticking them closer to daylight, further away from everything they can get away with.

And the blanket over him is hiding everything. Or it would. It could.

If Bruce wasn't Bruce. If Bruce couldn't tell exactly how awake he is by how even his breathing isn't, and if Bruce hadn't trained his senses --

Movement, a shift in presence. He must be tired. He has no real idea how long he spent just kind of lost in the idea of Bruce being able to tell... able to smell it.

But he's not letting Bruce just leave. "Bruce."

There's a pause, and it isn't a long one. Just long enough before Bruce says, "sleep."

Tim grins. Not "you should be asleep," because that would be too obvious, and not "why are you awake," because that would just be... really stupid.

And Bruce is still right there.

"Not yet," Tim says, and sits up. The covers fall over his lap. It would actually make things less obvious, he thinks... if it wasn't really obvious where his right hand was. If the air wasn't that kind of cool on his face that means he's flushed. He swallows and turns on his light.

And Bruce... he's got that look in his eyes. That look.

The one that always makes Tim want to growl and say something like "what is it" or maybe just "why?" But... he kind of thinks he knows what. And it's Bruce... so it's been a long time since he's really cared about why. "Bruce --"

"Yet," Bruce says, and then he's moving again.

Tim can't just feel it, he can hear it, too. Bruce is making a point or... something. And it's tempting to just finish himself off (again) like it's tempting to bang his face into the huge wooden headboard a few times.

Bruce doesn't make anything easy.

It's one of the things that makes Tim feel this way, that makes him...

The good kind of frustration, the kind that gets him out of the bed and mostly shoved into his pajama pants again and out the door, because Bruce is like...

Well, he's Tim's guardian now, and the lawyers and the social workers seem to think that means Bruce is some kind of parent, of father, but Tim knows better than that. Way better.

Because fathers leave, and fathers lie, and Bruce doesn't do either. Fathers try -- and fail -- to protect you from the world.

Bruce is the world.

So even though Bruce's door is closed, it's easy as anything to turn the knob with his -- heh -- clean hand and push through.

Even though it's dark -- Alfred doesn't let him keep his curtains closed that tight -- it's easy to move through the room until the bed is just another kind of presence... there.

Until he can hear Bruce breathing. Steady, even. He has a moment where he wishes he'd washed his hands, and then it's gone, and he climbs up onto the bed. And stops, because Bruce switches on the lamp.

"You shouldn't be here," he says, cold and calm, fixing Tim with a look that Tim's pretty sure is supposed to be... something other than what it is.

And it's his first look at Bruce since he'd left for patrol last night, so it takes a minute to get his thoughts in order. (That isn't the only reason) Because he has to see. There's a small cut high on his forehead, not enough to be bandaged. Not enough to really think about, except that whatever it was had cut through the cowl.

Tim narrows his eyes.


This is where he could ask about it. What, who, and when. It's the perfect time, because it's really the only time Tim would ever really get the chance, and maybe get in one more (probably useless, but maybe not) comment about how Bruce needs him out there to watch his back, as opposed to stuck here with freaking homework. It's almost reflexive to take advantage of moments like that now.

But he's also still hard. Still awake. So he swallows back the reflex. "Yeah, I know," he says, and rests his hand on the curve of Bruce's knee through the blanket. "But do you want me here?"

And he can feel -- he thinks he can feel -- Bruce tensing up a little, even though his eyes don't change, even though he's barely blinking, even though Tim's eyes are starting to sting a little from the fact that he's not really blinking, either, but Bruce doesn't move, or say anything.

And Tim waits for it, because he's pretty sure this would be the perfect time for Bruce to say something about how what they want doesn't matter, for him to say something like that and even mean it, a little, even though it wouldn't be enough to stop Tim from being...

Bruce shouldn't ever lie, or avoid things. Because he's Batman.

But he's waiting for it just the same, he's expecting it, because even though it wasn't hard to make himself do this, it's still not something he actually thinks he'll get, because --

And then he hears himself make a sound, high-pitched and embarrassing and awful like when some asshole like Killer Croc hurts him bad enough that he has to make noise, only not. Because he makes it into Bruce's mouth.

Because Bruce has him by the biceps, and he moves so fast, and he's so strong that he can move Tim just as fast. Move him and hold him and kiss him so hard it hurts, or maybe it's the hands on his arms. Or maybe it's the way Bruce's eyes are almost closed, like he has to concentrate on kissing.

Like the way Tim has to, because it's nothing like the games at school. Nobody's giggling, and the only sweat he can smell is his own. Bruce smells like the soap in the Cave showers, and he tastes like...


Tim isn't sure. He isn't sure it's something he can narrow down to a word, or even
several. It's more about how he feels than anything else. His mouth is so, so hard. Right up until his tongue slides into Tim's mouth and makes him groan, makes him
struggle, because he can't touch Bruce with his arms like this.

Bruce tightens his grip and pulls him closer, and Tim makes another noise, and suddenly it's less important that he's not touching Bruce, because Bruce is touching him, holding him, biting Tim's lip. Breathing against his face, and Tim can't see his eyes at all, anymore.

"Bruce -- oh --"

Bruce lets go. Of his right arm, and Tim shakes it out reflexively before --

"Oh God --"

Bruce's hand, yanking down his pajamas and reaching in, wrapping around him, around his dick, and Tim tenses hard and makes a noise he thinks is much too loud, and Bruce looks at him, narrow-eyed and a little angry and.


That's the word. That's what it is. So fucking familiar, because Tim knows it from the back. Knows what it feels like and now he knows what it looks like. And the way it just gets stronger, more, bigger when he can breathe enough, move enough to
move his hand to Bruce's cheek and just hold on.

"Bruce..." His voice sounds breathy and desperate to his own ears, but he can't relax. He can't even laugh at the idea of relaxing. Bruce's hand is as hard as his mouth, as unforgiving and honest and right and real, and Tim moans again and pushes into it.

"Yes," Bruce says, and it sounds like he's answering the question and maybe
everything else, too. It sounds like something that should just swallow him up, just kill him or turn him into something that doesn't matter anymore.

But Bruce always makes him feel like that, and it's never true.

It's just a feeling.

It's just another reason why this is so good. So right. He curls his hand and scratches at Bruce's stubble with his nails, and Bruce squeezes him. His arm and his dick, and Tim's mouth falls open on a groan.

And Bruce's teeth are showing. Just a little.

His body wants to close his eyes and throw his head back and give it up for this, but Tim doesn't want to stop looking. Stop seeing this. Because --

"Bruce. You -- oh -- you were waiting for this."

"Yes," Bruce says, and jacks him hard once, again. Again, and Tim can't spread his legs anymore because his pajamas are in the way, but he's trying.

"For me. Waiting -- Bruce -- waiting for me to get it..."

And Bruce doesn't look angry anymore. He looks hungry and happy and -- "For you to take it."

Amused and pleased, and his thumb is hard and callused and the best kind of torture on the head of Tim's dick, and Tim grins
helplessly and then gives up and bites his lip. He likes the way it feels when the moans come out through his teeth. "More," and he has just enough time to take a shuddery breath before Bruce is flipping them, slamming Tim down against the mattress and jerking his pants all the way off.

Tim spreads his legs and whimpers at the feel of Bruce letting him go, of Bruce stroking the insides of his thighs, of Bruce looking at him, because it's a feeling, too.

Bruce taking him in and seeing him just like he has from the beginning, only now he's using his mouth. Tim bites back a scream and shoves his hands into Bruce's hair, thick and cool and damp on his fingers. Throws his legs over Bruce's shoulders and writhes, because it's good and because he can.

Wet heat and Bruce's hands slipping down the backs of his thighs, down under his ass. Stroking and lifting him, pulling him in so deep, and Tim wants to say how good it is, wants to tell Bruce, and tell him not to stop, but the only thing that comes out is Bruce's name, over and over, hitched out on one moan after another, because he's still too shocked to come, too...

He clutches Bruce's hair tighter, pulls on it a little, and he's as deep as he can get, but he can't stop bucking anyway.

He can't stop fucking Bruce's mouth, and suddenly he isn't shocked at all.

"Bruce --"

And Bruce hums around him, like he's thinking about something interesting and important that he doesn't feel like telling him about -- yet -- and Tim has just enough time to smell the fresh sweat breaking out all over his skin before he's coming hard, spilling into Bruce's mouth and pulling Bruce's hair too hard and digging his heels into the muscles of Bruce's back.

"Bruce," he says again, and it's only falling back against the pillows that lets him know he'd been curled up, and it's only the way the light makes him blink that lets him know his eyes were closed.

He forces himself to blink more so he can focus faster, and tugs on Bruce's hair a little more when he feels Bruce move. Not yet, he thinks, and it feels like it takes forever before he can see clearly again.

Bruce is looking up at him from between his legs, expression somewhere between pleased and dangerous.

It kind of makes Tim want to growl.

He digs his heels in a little harder before flipping them off Bruce's shoulders and tugging more purposefully on Bruce's hair.

Bruce raises an eyebrow at him, and it's just a look, just a Bruce look, but right now it just feels like more sex. "Kiss me again. I want --"

To taste my come in your mouth, he was going to say, but Bruce never needs anyone to finish a sentence. Bruce tongue is slick in his mouth, salty and hot and perfect, and Tim licks it until he can't taste anything but spit and Bruce.

And then he wraps his legs around Bruce's waist and pulls, and Bruce doesn't make him clarify that, either, just settles his weight on him and hums into his mouth.

His... mouth.

Tim twists out of the kiss and pants, pushing at Bruce. "I want to suck you, too. I want --"

And the rest of that comes out on a grunt, because Bruce thrusts against him. "Tim."

"Oh yeah -- oh --"

Bruce's tongue in his ear and Bruce's hips working against him, Bruce's hands sliding under him, cupping his shoulders from the back and pulling Tim down so Bruce can just drive against his stomach, over and over, pushing gasps and grunts out of Tim that he couldn't hold back if he wanted to.

"Oh -- oh fuck --"

"Tim," Bruce says, and it's a moan, breathed into Tim's hair. Tim can't quite get enough air to breathe, and all of it tastes like sex and Bruce. He reaches down, trying to keep his legs around Bruce's waist and trying to keep breathing and trying to get Bruce's pajama pants down, and he's doing a bad job of all of it but he can't stop any of it.

"Bruce yes --"

And Bruce makes a soft, breathy sound and lets go of one of Tim's shoulders for long enough to reach back and shove his pants down and then he's on Tim again, over him, surrounding him, and he almost doesn't feel human.

There's just too much, he's just too Bruce, but the head of his dick is slick and hot on Tim's abdomen, and the smell of his sweat is making Tim's mouth water. He's -- God -- drooling for this, and he thinks he'd be embarrassed if it wasn't so hot. If Bruce wasn't so hot, the rhythm of his hips
relentless and hard.

Tim rides it for a moment, but then just gets lost in the feel. Bruce's hot skin, uneven with scars and slick with sweat, and all of Bruce's muscle. He strokes his way up Bruce's back with one hand and down over his ass with the other, and Bruce pants into his hair like an animal.

Like he can't stop.

Tim squeezes Bruce's ass --

"Tim. You feel so..."

And the rest is just a moan, loud and hot, and Tim gasps and clutches at Bruce, and then groans, because Bruce is coming on him, hot and wet, and shuddering a little.

"Tim," and it's quiet, almost too quiet to hear, and Tim realizes that he's still gasping. He wants Bruce to crush the breath out of him. He wants Bruce to...

He wants everything, and it's just like the beginning, when not even getting
knocked to the practice mats more often than he could count could drown out the feel of everything else.

The fact that he was getting what he wanted.

Every bruise just another reminder of the big, fat check the universe had written him.

Tim grins to himself and thinks he could probably use a little more oxygen.

Bruce shifts, and runs his hands down Tim's arms from the shoulders, wrist-pinning him briefly before rolling off. Tim takes a moment to breathe and then climbs back on Bruce, straddling his waist.

Bruce's hair is still rumpled. It makes Tim's hands twitch at his sides, but he settles for sliding them through the come on his
stomach. Bruce's look is sort of lazily thorough. A sexier version of the look he gives Tim before every patrol, making sure he's ready for the night and probably checking to make sure his belt is fully stocked solely with the power of his mind.

Tim raises an eyebrow at him.

Bruce raises an eyebrow right back. "You should go to bed," he says, and folds his hands over his chest.

"I am in bed."

"You're in my bed."

And Bruce is playing with him, he totally is, and a part of Tim's brain has been wired to send off special 'pay attention' alarms every time that happens, but it's also... Tim frowns a little.

Bruce strokes his face. "Are you all right?" It's not quite Batman-voice, but Bruce doesn't have a voice Tim can ignore.

"Just thinking about..."

"Secrets," Bruce says, and this time it's definitely Batman voice.

Tim nods, and Bruce strokes his cheek with his thumb, affectionate in a way that other people would probably think was effortless. Tim grins and leans into it, taking that, too, before twisting his head away. "I can keep them."

"I know," Bruce says, and looks at him.

Into him, through him. Watching him, and there are a lot of reasons Tim didn't take the tracers off his suit, even after Bruce had confessed. "It's worth it," he says, and leans in to kiss Bruce before Bruce can say anything else.

With his eyes closed, because he doesn't have to see Bruce to know he's watching.

Bruce cups the back of his head and nips his tongue lightly. Promisingly. Tim thinks very, very hard about leaning in a little closer, about what all the come on his belly must feel like to Bruce... and thinks about the fact that there's no way in hell any of it will mean anything against the fact that he has school tomorrow.

He groans into Bruce's mouth and pulls back.

Bruce smiles at him like he knows exactly what Tim is thinking and pulls a bundle of cloth from under his back that turns out to be Tim's pajamas. He shakes them out with one
wrist-snap and hands them over, and Tim wonders if Bruce knows how much of his mind is currently devoted to thinking of all the places where they can really be alone.

Where it'll be more than just Bruce Wayne's bed in Thomas Wayne's house.

He slips off the bed and pulls the pajamas back on and... he really needs a shower. Probably before Alfred drags him out of bed for school would be best. He grins to himself, and looks up at Bruce, wondering just how many jokes about that he can make before Bruce will put his foot down, but Bruce is just... looking at him.

Not even bothering to shift back until his face is in his shadow.

Tim's breath catches and his hands are too stupid to tie the belt.

"Good night, Tim."

And that's a promise, too. "Night, Bruce."

He can feel Bruce looking as he leaves.

He can feel Bruce looking until he goes to sleep.


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Fandom:  Other (Gotham Knights (cartoon))
Title:  Fearless on my breath
Author:  Te   [email]   [website]
Details:  Standalone  |  NC-17  |  *slash*  |  23k  |  07/19/04
Characters:  Tim, Bruce
Pairings:  Tim/Bruce
Summary:  Tim's pretty psyched about his life, all things considered.

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