you’re one of my midnight thoughts.
Gotham’s skyline dances with glittering neon lights and the quick flicker of moving shadows. Robin, perched atop a water tower, can just pick out the members of his family from afar. The flip that’s all Nightwing flare, the wraith-like flutter of Black Bat’s cape.
At night, Gotham is alive like she can never truly be in daylight. All her worst secrets crawl from the gutters while her defenders take to the sky. If you know how to look, there’s a rainbow painted in bats and birds across the midnight sky. Tonight, it’s a little duller than usual.
There’s no scarlet splashed along the spectrum of colors; Red Robin is nowhere to be found.
Robin feels his absence like an itch under his skin, feels foolish for it, but doesn’t bother trying to scratch it out. He’s adjusted to the mournful beast named yearning which has made its home in his chest. It’s quieter when Red Robin is home, but when he’s away, it makes a nest of Robin’s lungs and gnaws on his heart for sustenance.
( One day the yearning is going to get too big for his rib cage and come bursting forth, become something unquenchable and uncontrollable. He knows it will, because it feels the same as he does these days, putting on the Robin suit. Like the seams are straining and there’s something raw tearing at the underneath. )
He puts Red Robin from his mind and launches from the water tower, swinging between buildings in pursuit of his father’s shadow.
The route is familiar. Routine. Robin matches Batman move for move, mirroring left when he goes right. They make good time. Gotham is quiet, tonight.
All too soon, Robin returns to the Cave to roost and peels back his red-green-yellow skin and becomes Damian again.