title: Roads
fandom: DC Comics
characters/pairings: Bruce/Dick, Garth/Dick, Barbara
rating: Teen
warnings: angry sex
summary: Dick and Babs look back and think about change.
notes: answer to 'Change' challenge. except this is ~570 words, so... i'm too lazy to fit it in the 500 limit. oops!! sorry! ^_^
*sigh* i'm such a challenge whore...

Dick leaned his head back onto the couch, scooting down as he laughed. His head bumped into Babs', making the both of them laugh harder.

When they finally got their breath back, Babs was looking into his eyes with a serious expression. "Ok, Grayson. It's the night before my wedding. I'm drunk. I'm giggly. You're still too gay to take advantage of me. So you have to give something else up."

Dick grinned. "Ok. Whaddya want?"

She eyed him critically. "If there was one thing about your life that you could change, what would it be?"

His expression sobered.

Alfred had left an hour ago, not wanting to watch them fight anymore.

Dick was snarling; Bruce was in full Bat mode.

In retrospect, saying "If you think you can take me, then try!" was probably a mistake.

Bruce ducked, weaving left as he swung out. With a swipe of his legs, he got Dick on his back.

Bruce's sweaty face was inches above him, his arms and legs immobile under Bruce's weight. But Dick was not about to give up. He pushed up hard with his hips, trying to shove Bruce off.

His eyes widened and he started to grin as he encountered Bruce's weakness.

He craned his neck up, reaching for a kiss and biting down on Bruce's bottom lip.

Bruce was stunned, giving Dick the leverage to flip them over.

When he was finally all the way inside, Dick grinned down at Bruce. "I told you I could take you."

"I made a mistake when I was seventeen."

In the morning, Dick struggled against the black sheets of Bruce's bed, disconcerted to be waking up in unfamiliar environs.

The rest of the bed was empty.

With a sigh, Alfred informed him at breakfast that Master Bruce had left for Sweden that morning on emergency business.

Dick stared at his blueberry pancakes, his innards quaking.

"It ruined everything."

Dick sat next to the tub in Garth's room, cold. He had a towel draped over his groin, his chin propped up on the ceramic of the rim of the tub. Under the water, Garth's expression was impossible to read. The ripples made his eyes appear unearthly.

Finally, Garth smoothly broke the surface. Dick wanted to touch the spongy curls kissing Garth's temple.

"Why?" The Atlantean's smooth voice betrayed little, but his defensive posture against the side of the tub made Dick want to rip his own skin off.

"I... don't know. I guess..."

"Do you love him?"

Dick didn't want to answer.

Dick hadn't thought about this in years. Garth went below the surface, to think about things. He and Tula had always been close, but Garth had been naive enough to not know that she desired him.

The next time Dick saw him, Garth and Tula were inseparable.

"You can compete with a person, but not with a ghost." Dick's eyes mesmerized Babs. "After she died... Her every virtue, my every fault, was magnified."

"I thought..." Babs leaned closer to him. "You and Bruce, you always seemed..."

"Sometimes." Dick took a swig of tequila. "But... I'm so tired... of fighting him. Over everything. For everything. And Garth... We would have been happy."

Babs took a sip of tequila, pensive.

"What about you, what would you change?"

She looked into his eyes, falling in their unassuming depths.

Gathering a false smile, she sighed. "I wouldn't change a thing, batboy."