Sometime back I started writing this Bruce/Dick AU where Martha and Thomas Wayne live, Batman never came to be, and Bruce Wayne grows up to be a billionaire playboy anyway. (Oh, and Dick for some reason worked at Thomas Waynes & Leslie Thompkins’ free clinic.)
Then I realised beyond those facts (which are crazy anyway who cares about a Bruce that isn’t caught up in his own tragic wangst), the central premise running the story was stupid so I abandoned it. But I’m pleased with this little snippet that I did write.
I’m posting it in hopes someone will take pity and write some proper Bruce + Dick, ffs.
The clinic is all screaming babies and disgruntled adults when Bruce makes his way through the front doors. With all available seats taken up by sick children and elderly, it’s standing room only, and his walk to the reception turns out to be an odyssey in itself.
When he finally gets there, it’s to find the receptionist tied up with a patient. Bruce turns instead to the other person behind the desk — a kid in scrubs, sorting through a stack of files.
The head of floppy black hair bobs, but doesn’t look up. “Yep?”
“Could you direct me to Dr. Wayne’s office?”
“You’ll need to take a queue — oh.”
Bruce can’t help but stare back at the young man looking up at him. Raven-dark hair, bright blue eyes, all sharp cheekbones and pouty lips. Possibly jail-bait, too, by the looks of it (and never mind the fact that Bruce’s parents wouldn’t quite appreciate him hitting on the help).
“You’re Bruce Wayne.” Wide eyes aside, the kid’s smile isn’t so much thunderstruck as sheepish.
Bruce tips an imaginary hat, acknowledging the statement if not quite responding to it. “I’m supposed to be meeting my father for lunch. Though with all this bedlam, I imagine that’s an unlikely prospect?” he amends wryly, looking around.
“Yeah, there’s a minor flu pandemic making the rounds,” the boys says, looking apologetic. “You can pop into Dr. Wayne’s office right before his next patient, it shouldn’t be another minute or so…”
Bruce is quick to wave off the suggestion. “I’d rather not bother him; he’s clearly busy. Could you let him know I stopped by? And remind him that we’ll see each other at the Children’s Society benefit on Thursday night.”
“Sure, I — “
They’re interrupted by the unmistakeable sound of someone vomiting in the background.
“Your turn for clean-up duty, dick,” the receptionist says, glancing over at them pointedly.
Bruce raises his eyebrow at the insult, but the young man just says, “Right,” and executes a graceful flip over the desk with nary a breath or preamble.
“Duty calls,” he says, grimacing up at Bruce while collecting a mop and bucket from a nearby utility closet. “But I’ll be sure to pass the message to your father, Mister Wayne.”
Bruce blinks. “Please, call me Bruce…”
And rude as it is, he can’t help but let his eyes wander. Medical scrubs have surely never looked so good. That’s a body born for the stage, full of the long, lithe lines that mark all the exceptional dancers and gymnasts.
“Dick. Dick Grayson.” Grayson - the name sounds familiar, and Bruce makes a note to look it up later. And another note to not tell his father to fire the clinic’s receptionist, after all.
They shake hands, and Dick flashes him a smile that could get débutantes swearing their virtue to him, given half a chance.
“You should come to the benefit on Thursday.”
… Or get Bruce Wayne to invite a handsome young stranger to a society event, at any rate. But there’s something more there, beyond the warm eyes and firm handshake, lurking beneath the bright exterior: a thoughtfulness, maybe, or a sadness. It’s intriguing.
“I’ll have my assistant give you a call,” he adds. With Dick working at a Wayne Foundation facility, getting his contact details shouldn’t be a problem.
“…Oh. Um. I—” Despite the hesitation, there’s interest in Dick’s eyes. Bruce has enough experience to recognise it — and more than enough experience to unravel it, too.
He raises an eyebrow. “I’m sure you could use a break from mopping up bodily fluids. Granted, I can’t promise there won’t be a trust fund brat or two heaving out their stomachs or relieving themselves publicly.”
That earns him a warm laugh, and Bruce finds himself counting all the things he’d happily give up just to hear it again (who needs a yacht, anyway?).
“It’ll make for a change, I suppose.” It’s not quite a yes, but there’s that grin again, peeking out through the upturned corners of Dick’s full lips. Bruce returns it readily.
“Alright, then. I’ll see you on Thursday.”
Dick’s brows shoot up at the presumption, but Bruce has his best playboy smirk on and is out the door before the other man can voice any protests. Whether he would take up the invite remains to be seen, and certainly it was extremely forward. Regardless of the outcome, Bruce figures he can always make more… impromptu visits… to the clinic. To meet his father for lunch, of course. Possibly get further acquainted with certain staff members while in the vicinity.
And if Bruce spends the rest of his day at the office, meetings and all, contemplating how best to coax out another of those billion-dollar smiles during said hypothetical visits - well, he is the boss, after all.