Title: Your moves are irregular, but my gravity is consent
Rating: We just don’t know.
Characters : Dick Grayson, Tim Drake.
Summary: It wasn’t falling, it was flying… that was what Dick told him anyway.
Author’s note: LOVE YOU JULIE.
The thing about gravity is that it really shouldn’t be a thing at all. Because, well. When Tim thinks about it (and he does, quite a lot. Not much else to do on the stretch of road between the old wherever and the new one), it really, really shouldn’t be.
He’s heard and read about the theory, and it hasn’t done anything to change his opinion. It simply doesn’t seem to do much, see, just explains what everyone already knew. It’s a bit like Dick when Tim finally told him, heart and stomach knotted up and choking him, about his late nights of falling, not for the rush, not to catch a villain, but to feel alive, (because with everyone Tim has lost, it was hard to remember that he was here breathing, his heart thumping with the words of—alivealivealive ), only to see Dick smirk and shrug, so? writ plain into every line in his posture and face. So?, like this wasn’t news, just a voicing of something he had known so long it was almost instinctual. Nothing special, if only because it’d always been there.
Tim gets it somewhere on the road to Bludhaven.
He’s walking, mostly because he wants to walk on the streets Dick’s walked, wants to touch what Dick has touched and it’s is beautiful in a nondescript way, and something in Tim feels like he should give it more of a chance to become memorable than his speed in a car would let him. The road is dusty under his feet, dirt swirling around his ankles with every step. Overhead, the sky is a cloudless, clear blue, so bright it hurts to look at it. Tim watches his feet instead, the splitters of granite he kicks up and the way his shoes rise and fall and move him forward as he walks.
He’s not even sure why, but one step makes him stop short. His right foot hangs in the air, suspended, and something in Tim’s mind clicks, massive and shattering. He stares at his foot, feet, both of them, but mostly the left one, still stuck on the road, and suddenly all he can think about is how it’s his only point of connection to the ground. He lowers his right foot gingerly, and having two points isn’t much better, except for how it is. It is because he gets it suddenly, he understands, the importance of the fact that there’s more holding him here than just those points of his feet on the road.
Tim remembers asking Dick once about flying, and if he could do it. He’d laughed and said, Of course, Timmy and then he’d jumped off the roof with a burst of laughter, the kind that warmed Tim’s stomach, and free-falled, arms outstretched, his eyes flashing blue, ( Too bright, way too bright ), and nothing but air between him and the ground. It worked. He’d fallen back, flicked his grappling-hook for the tiniest of seconds and it whip-lashed zipping him back to the roof, the sunset halo-ing in sudden beautiful gold.
That was falling though, you loser, Tim had said.
It was flying, Timbo; it’s not that hard to fly, Timmy, he’d said. Sides why would I want to fall to the ground, when I can fly and float away from you instead? But his hand had gripped Tim’s tight like a tether, and Tim had only smiled.
Now, he thinks about that, the pull of Dick’s hand and both of them stuck inexplicably to the ground, invisible tethers holding them down. Tim looks up at the sky and then down at his feet. He raises one cautiously, stupidly nervous even though he knows there’s something tying him here, something more than the one point of connection where his foot meets the road. He scuffs his raised foot, watches the kicked-up dust float and swirl on the wind before falling back down to settle on the ground, in the grooves of his shoes. And he laughs because he understands, him and everything else, all of what’s here held safe and stable.
Tim looks up at the sky, open and blue and boundless. The air shimmers a bit from heat, uncertain and wavering, a contrast to the solid ground under his feet. He laughs again the line of the his grappling hook catching onto the ledge of a building, he lands, soft, and his fingers tingle as he jumps right back off it, just for the sake of feeling himself fly down like he already knows he will, for the sake of feeling the air flutter at his hair, reminding himself that it was going to be okay, despite Dick being gone because Dick told him it would be.
He jumps to hold onto the memory of Dick a little bit longer.