Chapter 1: Deperate Times Call for Desperate Measures
*7 days to Christmas*
‘Tis the season to be jolly, my ass!’ Tim grouched to himself as he flipped through what felt like the hundredth magazine. There were 12 days left to Christmas and he had no clue what to get for Kon. Nothing seemed to stand out from all the options and frankly, Tim was getting very much close to desperate.
So desperate that he was just about ready to ask his family for suggestions. Tim stopped for a moment to consider the option. But just as quickly shook the thought away. Asking his brothers and father figure for their advice would only be an option if he was left with 3 days and was still without a present.
Satisfied with his decision, Tim stared at the open magazine before grimacing at the ugly looking cardigan and continued with his seemingly impossible task of finding the JUST RIGHT present for his boyfriend.
* 3 days before Christmas*
“Dick, can I have a minute?”
The older man patted the empty spot next to him, “Yeah sure, whats up Tim?”
Tim sank down into the plush sofa, “I’d like your input on a certain matter.”
“Well…as you know, this will be the first Christmas Kon and I will be celebrating as a couple. And well….” Tim looked away from Dick’s open and curious gaze, feeling slightly embarrassed to admit this out loud, “I don’t know what to get for him.”
Dick’s tone was tinged with confusion as he replied, “You’ve never had trouble picking out something for him before. Just get him something you would have before you started going out.” Tim turned to give Dick a ‘are you crazy?’ look, “I can’t do that! We’re dating now! The present has to be something….special. I can’t give him just anything.”
“I think you’re over thinking this little brother.” Dick held up his hands in a gesture of self defense at the glare Tim sent him way. “Fine, fine! Then…how about…” Tim waited patiently as Dick tapped a finger against his lips, his eyes gazing off in the distance as he considered the options.
A happy spark of hope burst into life inside his chest as Dick snapped his fingers and turned his bright smile towards Tim, “How about tying yourself up in a big ribbon and giving yourself as a gift to Kon?”
He wasn’t able to duck the pillow that came flying at his face and was left half bent over the sofa arm yelling, “What?!” as Tim stormed out.
“Lemme get this straight….”
Tim took a deep breath to steady himself and reminded himself that he was desperate and that was why he was standing in front of his second older brother asking for his help. Jason stood up, wiping his hands on a dirty rag as he turned around to face Tim.
The second Robin was giving him a slightly disbelieving stare as he repeated the problem, “You want my opinion on what you should get your boy toy for Christmas?”
Barely resisting the urge to grind his teeth at the underlying amusement in Jason’s voice, Tim replied, “In a nutshell, yes.”
“What’s in it for me if I help you out?”
The flippant question earned him a slightly incredulous look, “The satisfaction of helping a fellow human being?”
Jason rolled his eyes, tossing the dirty rag away on the bench. “I’d sooner feel the satisfaction of a twenty in my hands.” He smiled cheekily at Tim, who glared back for a moment. Grumbling under his breath, Tim pulled his wallet out and handed the money over. “This is extortion.”
Jason tucked the money away into the back pocket of his jeans, “You say extortion, I say money making opportunity.” He crossed his arms over his chest. “A sniper rifle.”
Tim smacked his forehead with the palm of his head, “I said for Kon, not for yourself!”
“And how do you know that he wouldn’t like a sniper rifle for a present?”
“He’s Superboy! What use would a meta have for a sniper rifle when he’s got heat vision?”
Jason rolled his eyes, “Fine fine you little princess. Then how about….” Jason’s expression became thoughtful for a few minutes before he asked, “I suppose anything that explodes is out of the question?” Tim gave him a disbelieving look that made him mutter, “Right, stupid me what WAS I thinking when I asked that….”
Jason shrugged his broad shoulders as he spoke, “Get naked, slap a bow on your head and get the Christmas tree?”
To say he was confused and mildly irritated when Tim turned heel and walked out of the garage without another word would have been a slight understatement.
“Drake I hardly have time for this.”
“I hardly have the patience for this but I’m desperate.”
Damian rubbed a towel over his forehead, wiping the sweat away before tossing the towel back to its place on the bench. “You lack patience and intelligence if you cannot even select a present for your…partner.”
Tim threw his hands up in the air, “I don’t know why I even tried!”
“What I fail to comprehend is why you do not simply present your naked self to the lummox you call a boyfriend and just be done it.”
Tim had to bite down on his tongue to stop himself from screaming in frustration.
Comedians and clowns, that’s what his brothers were.
Bruce looked up from the papers in his hand as he heard the knock on his door. “Come in.”
Tim pushed the door open, stepping into the study as he spoke, “Hi Bruce. I wasn’t interrupting your work was I?”
Tossing the papers down on the table, Bruce indicated for his son to take a seat, “Not at all.” He waited for Tim to make himself comfortable before asking, “I could use a break. How can I help you Tim?”
Tim closed his eyes for a moment and prayed that Bruce would be his salvation. He took a deep breath, “I was just wondering what you’ll be getting Superman for Christmas.”
Blinking in surprise, the older man questioned, “Clark?” At Tim’s nod, Bruce leaned back in his seat, “I’ve set aside some cash for him so he can buy whatever he wants.” Tim blinked at Bruce, half thinking that perhaps Bruce was joking but…
“Its worked before.” was Bruce’s simple reply.
The urge to head desk increasing with every passing second, Tim quickly stood up, “Thank you.”
Bruce stared with a small measure of confusion as Tim walked out, ‘For what exactly?’
“Are you alright Master Tim?”
Tim didn’t raise his head from the hand as he dully replied, “Just fine Alfred.”
He totally missed the quirk of Alfred’s brow but not the dry sarcasm in the old man’s tone as he spoke, “If you say so Sir.”
Tim remained stationary, the palm of his hand covering his eyes as he slouched further in his seat. He detachedly tracked Alfred’s movements through sound as he put away the batch of clean laundry he had brought in.
There were less than 3 days left to Christmas and Tim’s last plan had pretty much fallen through. To be honest, he hadn’t expected this. He had thought that he would receive some sensible gift suggestions from his family but…
‘Everyone’s a damn comedian…’ Tim grouched internally as he recalled his brother’s advice. They probably planned that answer in advance too…‘Although…’ He lifted his head up and eyed Alfred in contemplation as he neatly tucked a few pairs of white socks away.
“Hey Alfred. Can I ask you something?”
The elderly man looked up from his task, “But of course Sir.”
Tim scratched the back of his neck as he spoke, “I can’t think of a good enough gift to get Kon. I don’t suppose you have any suggestions?” There was a small note of hopefulness in his voice and eyes as he gazed up at the butler.
Alfred seemed to contemplate the question carefully as he stashed away the last pair of socks into the drawer.
“Have you considered giving him something that he needs?”, the old man said. Tim’s brow scrunched together, confusion coloring his voice as he asked, “Something he needs?”
“I imagine the young Mr.Kent must have mentioned at one point or another that he needs something. For example, a new jacket or a gaming console perhaps?” Tim’s expression turned contemplative as he considered the first sensible suggestion he had received all day. He reply was slow as he spoke, “He did mention something about wanting a new winter jacket…”
But Tim still looked unsure, “But…would that be an appropriate gift?”
“I believe it is the thought that counts. Regardless of what you give him, Mr.Kent would be highly appreciative of the time and effort you spent while searching for the gift.”
The last bit of advice seemed to give Tim heart and he nodded firmly, “Thank you for your help Alfred.” He gave him a small grateful smile which the butler returned before returning to his task.
* 2 days to Christmas*
“My word!” Alfred blinked in surprise as he opened the main door and found himself staring at a large stack of presents with legs. “Master Tim?”
There was a family grunt from the back of the brightly wrapped parcels, “A little help please Alfred.”
The butler was quick to lighten the load on Tim’s arms as soon as the young man was indoors. “I am to gather that my advice was useful?”
That prompted a tired moan out of the man as he placed the small mountain of presents on top of a nearby table. “A little too useful I’m afraid.”
Something clicked inside Alfred’s head and he looked over the present pile with astonishment, “All of these are for-“
“Yes.” Tim’s tone was as dry as the Sahara in the middle of a drought. “All of these presents are for Kon.” He raised a hand up to pinch the bridge of his nose, mortification making a pink blush spread over his face as he explained, “I went to find a good enough jacket and I found that easily enough. But on my way to the counter I saw this suit and I recalled Kon mentioning that he only had this old hand me down from Clark.”
“So you went to purchase a new suit for young Mr.Kent.”
Tim nodded, a tad on the miserable side, “I figured if I was getting him a suit, then I should get him a few shirts to go with them. And a few ties and the next thing I know.” Tim waved at the cheerful boxes in front of him in an explanatory manner and threw himself down into the nearest chair. He pulled his gloves off, every movement terse and agitated as he spoke, “I went completely overboard with the presents! And I don’t even know which item is in which box or else I’d separate them and give him a few! Not to mention!”
Alfred just managed to catch a small iron statue that fell off its perch as Tim waved his arms with a little too much nervous panicking, “Kon’ll be here in a few hours and I just….” Tim looked two wrong words away from melting down in the foyer as he miserably finished, “I’m a horrible boyfriend.”
That was something Alfred was not going to just stand by and listen. “Master Tim, I hardly believe that such-”
They both were startled to hear a loud rapping on the front door. The pair exchanged a quick look before moving towards the door. They were ready for anything that might be behind the door.
Except what was actually behind the door.
Or to be more correct. WHO was behind the door.
Tim blinked in surprise to find a red nosed, thoroughly bundled up Conner Kent waiting with a bright smile and a loud, “Surprise!”
He could only gape as Kon stepped into the warm house, dropping his bags as he spoke, “I thought I’d show up a bit early and surprise you!” The meta blithely ignored the surprise on Tim’s face (or most likely was patting himself on the back for a surprise well executed because one could not pull many surprises off on ANY of the Bats) and pressed a small kiss to his cheek.
“You’re early!” was the only thing Tim managed to spit out. That earned him a slow brow raise, “That’s what I just said Wonder boy. You alright?”
‘No, no I’m not! The universe is clearly conspiring to kill me of stress!’ Tim wanted to yell but instead he closed his eyes and took in a few deep breaths. Nice and long and slow.
“Whoa, that’s a big pile of presents. Who’re they for?”
Or maybe he needed more than a few deep breathes….maybe a few dozen.
Chapter 2: Of Presents and Gag Gifts
T’was the night before Christmas and Tim’s hoping that Kon won’t be too mad at the fact that he went more than a little gift happy. Also, the Batfam family motto: “A family who fights together, stays together.”
(See the end of the chapter for notes.)
Kon hovered by the ceiling, hanging ornaments on the upside-down, attached to the dry plaster, top portion of the artificial tree. “Is this okay?”
Tim glanced up from the ground, “A little less red and a few silver ornaments should do the trick.”
As Kon removed a few of the delicate ornaments, he asked, “So, remind me again why you all decorate your own trees?”
Tim’s attention was focused on the strings holding the lowest branches of the upside-down, attached to the floor, bottom portion of the artificial tree straight. He gently pulled one of the strings tighter as he spoke, “Because the last time we all tried to decorate the same tree, we wound up without a tree that year.”
Dick was busy setting up his own tree as he mused, “Alfred was so mad with us that year.” He snorted in amusement as he recalled that Christmas. “He actually stuffed our stockings with coal.”
As he hung a glittering silver globe on an empty branch, Kon winced in sympathetic pain, “Yowtch. Way to make a point.”
“After that, we all got our own trees to decorate any way we wanted.” Frowning at his tree, Dick asked, “Did anyone see where I put that Hulk figure?”
Tim didn’t look up from his fussing over a few stray branches, “Did you check the box?”
As Dick grumbled as he dug through his box of decorations, Kon landed gently on the floor. “What do you think? Good?”
Tim’s eyes went over the top part of the tree, “Yeah, looks great. Although….”
Kon quickly turned Tim around, slapped his hands on the smaller boys shoulders before pushing/marching him out the library doors. “No! NO over thinking on the decorations! A Portal themed Christmas tree is the coolest thing ever and you are not allowed to over think it!”
Tim dug his heels slightly into the floor (which was useless given that he was wearing socks and the floor was polished wood), “But there were a few ornaments that I needed to adjust and maybe double check to make sure that the ceiling part is properly attached and…”
He suddenly found himself lifted an inch off the ground and floating in front of an amused Kon. “Dude. Relax. It looks great. I don’t think anything can beat a tree that looks like its porting through the floor and coming out from the ceiling. Not even Jason’s Cthulu tree.”
“If you say so…” Tim grumbled as he found himself being thoroughly manhandled, “If the top part falls from the ceiling, I’m telling you right now that I’ll be blaming you.”
“Knock yourself out.” Kon agreed breezily before setting Tim down a few feet away from the kitchen door. “Though I seriously doubt that that tree is gonna fall from the ceiling.”
Tim raised an eyebrow at the meta’s confident tone, “What makes you say that?”
Kon’s smile was amused as he pushed the door to the kitchen open, “Cause I used so much glue that I think that I’m half….high…?”
Kon trailed off as the pair eyed the scene in the kitchen. There was frosting on every available surface (including the ceiling yet strangely not on the cookies cooling on the island counter) and the two occupants stopped midway their trash talk to stare back at the new entrances.
Surprised and confused were complete understatements in this case, for both parties.
Kon raised a finger up in the air, as though he was asking for permission to speak, “Are you seeing all this frosting everywhere too or did I really get high on all that glue?”
Tim balefully eyed the smudge of pale blue frosting on the ceiling, “Its not you. Jason, Steph, what the hell happened?”
The occupants immediately pointed towards each other and yelled in unison, “(S)he started it!” and then scowled at each other.
“I did not!”
“It sure as hell wasn’t me blondie!”
“Whatever you bottle dyed Batbrat!”
“Can it Fatgirl!”
Stephanie gasped, “Oh you did not! You SO did not go there Pill head!” and tackled Jason to the ground.
Kon took a step forward, ready to break the two apart. But stopped when he felt a hand tugging at his sweater hem from behind. He turned around to look at Tim, who was insistently tugging at the sweater and trying his best to drag Kon out of the kitchen.
“Er Tim? Shouldn’t we like…I dunno…stop them? Before they maybe kill each other?”
Tim gave him a look, “Trust me, they won’t be killing each other. This is their version of flirting.”
“Huh?” was Kon’s bewildered reply as he looked towards the source of fairly loud yells and at Tim’s resigned face. “That’s flirting?”
Tim shrugged in a ‘What can you do about it’ manner. Kon wasn’t one to disagree with Tim but…really, that couldn’t have been…and all his notions of disagreeing with his Robin went out the window when he heard a moan. He immediately did an about face and Tim found himself being dragged out of the kitchen thanks to his hold on Kon’s sweater.
Kon had his finger tips pressed against his tightly closed eyes as he tried to forget what he had just heard. “Your family is completely insane.”
“You don’t know the half of it.” Tim muttered under his breath as he recalled his own behavior. Which was a mistake because it made his stomach clench in an uncomfortable (and unfamiliar) twist. He hoped that Kon would miss how his sudden stiffness as the taller man opened his eyes to gaze ruefully at Tim.
Tim was internally panicking as a small frown twisted Kon’s lips. “Hey is everyth-“
“Excuse me please.”
Kon jumped back at Alfred’s sudden materialization, barely managing to hold a few choice curse words back in the process. It was only through years of training that Tim managed to not jump back as well.
“If you don’t mind young Master Kent, but I require Master Tim’s services for the remainder of the evening.”
“Oh. Ummm. Is it anything I can help with?”
“Thank you but Master Tim’s help is all that I require.”
Kon’s shoulders slumped slightly and Tim couldn’t help but pat his arm in comfort. “Thanks for offering. Why don’t you finish wrapping up those presents you said you had left?”
The meta groaned, tipping his head back slightly as he smacked his head, “I almost forgot about those! Ma would kill me if I gave her gifts without packing them right.” He quickly threw his arm around Tim and pressed a quick kiss against his cheek, “You’re a life saver Tim.”
Part amused and part embarrassed at the show of affection, Tim lightly shoved Kon away, “I’ll see at dinner.”
With a lazy wave, the meta was off in the direction of his room. Tim waited for him to be well out of range before murmuring to Alfred, “Thanks for the save Alfred.”
“Master Tim, it would be entirely to your benefit to simply explain yourself to Master Kent rather than worrying yourself to the point of giving yourself an ulcer.” Alfred’s normally impassive featured shifted slightly into a light expression of censure, “Master Kent has already noticed that something is amiss. It would be unwise to avoid the issue.”
Tim sighed miserably, “I know. I’m just…scared.”
“Of what exactly?”
Tim shrugged helplessly, “That he might resent me. Or think that I’m showing off. Or both.”
“I sincerely doubt that he would think of that you. Master Kent holds you in the highest regards possible. I really doubt that he would think that you are deliberately showing off.” Alfred gently patted Tim’s slumped shoulders, “You need not worry so much about this. Now. Shall we see to decorating the dining hall and the main staircase?”
Tim had planned on talking with Kon after dinner. He would quietly take his boyfriend aside and explain that he might have gone slightly over the top with the presents. But then Steph had dragged him off because she needed help finishing her tree. The minute he was done, he was off in search of Kon only to be dragged off for patrol.
By the time he came back, Kon had firmly barricaded himself in his room saying that no one was allowed in because he was wrapping their presents.
Which meant that the only time where he could apologize and warn Kon was right before they started opening the presents. And yet somehow, Tim had overslept while Kon had gotten up early and now here they were. In the library with the rest of the family, waiting for Alfred to bring in Dick and Damian. And in Tim’s case, doing his best to de-twist his stomach from the knot’s it’d worked itself into.
Kon was making his way through a small pile of Alfred’s sugar cookies as they waited. Tim took a small sip of his coffee, hoping, praying, worrying that Kon wouldn’t be too mad.
“Dude, your pile of presents is like…huge.”
And that was another ten knots in his stomach as Tim turned to look where Kon was pointing. At a fairly familiar pile of presents (along with some that he didn’t recognize) placed around the bottom end of his Portal tree. “Well…” Tim hedged for a moment, “Your presents are there too.”
“Oh yeah. Hadn’t thought of that.” Kon plucked up the plate in front of him and held it out to Tim, “You should eat something. You look…well…like shit.” The man eyed the sweet treats and felt nausea rising at the thought of eating something at the moment.
“No thank you. Emm…listen…” His eyes followed the plate as the meta placed it back down, “About the presents…there’s something that-“
“Merry Christmas everyone!” Dick announced with great cheer as he bounded into the room. He bounced over to the nearest person (Stephanie) and grabbed her in a big hug before moving on to Bruce and made his way across the room. Damian clicked his tongue before plopping down a few feet away from his tree. He held all the air of an aristocratic cat who was thoroughly put out. Yet he couldn’t quite hide his impatience as his eyes kept darting over his present pile.
Alfred made his way to the sofa with cool dignity, sitting down next to Cassandra. “I believe we can start now.”
Bruce nodded in agreement as Dick chirped, “Lets dig in then!” and quickly pulled a large package out of Damian’s pile before placing it in front of him. “Merry Christmas little D!”
Damian eyed the flat parcel, “Once again you went overboard with the ribbons Grayson. One ribbon is more than enough to serve as decorations. Why on Earth would you use three?”
“It looks good?” Dick smiled good naturally before pushed the present closer to Damian, “And you rip on my gift wrapping every year. Just open it already!”
With another click of the tongue, Damian quickly (and neatly) unwrapped his present. He lifted the lid off and every leaned in slightly to get a look. “A sweatshirt.”
Dick beamed as the boy held the shirt up to examine the typography pattern, “I noticed your old one was getting ratty. No offense but that shirt had more holes in it than swiss cheese. I figured you could use a new one.”
Jason looked up from where he was unwrapped his own present, “Says the person who still has that fugly pair of sweatpants which are nothing but threads hanging together.”
Dick waved a a thin package in Jason’s direction, “For your information those sweats are still wearable.”
“Maybe at a stripper joint.” Jason’s eyebrows went up as he pulled out his gift. “The complete Battlestar Galactica? Thanks baby bird.”
Tim nodded, “No problem.” He held up a pink sequined dress with a wry grin, “And thank you too.”
Kon snickered along with a few other occupants, leaning in to ask, “Are those the gag gifts you were talking about?” Tim nodded, looking over at Stephanie as she squealed in delight over her present before going over to tackle a laughing Dick. Damian was sitting admiring a short sword while Jason was regaling how he had managed to acquire the weapon. Cassandra was tugged on a new sweater before she turned to Alfred and asked quietly, “How does it look?” Alfred lowered the sweater in his hands before nodding in approval at the dark haired girl. “Simply lovely.”
“Gag gifts are practically a tradition with us now.” Tim said wryly as he watched Kon open his own present with all the fervor of a young child. Tim was pulling a few ripped pieces of wrapping paper out of his hair when he found himself engulfed in a tight hug. “Dude! HOW did you know that I needed a new jacket?!”
Tim weakly patted Kon’s arm with a small laugh, “I think you mentioned it a while back. Do you like it?”
Kon gave Tim a slightly incredulous stare, “DUH. I mean, look at this!” He held up the dark gray parka to admire with a loving gaze. His eyes widened slowly as he caught sight of the brand. His voice lowered in a reverent tone, “You…got me an original Alpha Industries jacket?”
Tim let out a small ‘omph!’ as he was roughly grabbed again, except this time in a tighter hug. He had to fight down a blush at the cat calls coming from his family and he attempted to disentangle himself from Kon. But Kon happily ignored the good natured jeering and gently kissed a blushing Tim. Tim spluttered slightly, even as Kon eyed him with amusement and love, “I love my present. Thank you.”
Tim sheepishly picked up another present from the pile, loving/hating the prospect of being ribbed by his family about being a lovey-dovey couple. “You could have just said that.”
Kon snorted as he quickly pulled the jacket on, “That wouldn’t have been half as much fun.” He shuffled closer to Tim before poking his arm gently, “Open that present up.” Tim gave him an amused look, “That is what I’m doing.”
They both looked up at Jason as he groaned loudly. They watched as he held up a red dildo at a laughing Dick, “The dildo head jokes got old last year you prat!”
Dick snickered and held up an empty box to protect himself as Jason threw the red toy at his head, “It’ll never get old for me.”
Kon gave Tim a curious look, “Dildo head?”
Tim mimed putting a helmet on, “The red mask.”
As Kon let out a soft ‘ah’ of understanding, Tim opened the small parcel in his hands. He was very much aware of Kon’s eager gaze as he pulled our a pair of soft leather gloves. “Do you like em?”
Tim ran a finger over the stitching, tracing the neat stitches of his initials in one corner, “I love them. Did you get these custom made?”
Kon shrugged easily, “I know a guy who gave me a great deal.”
Tim rolled his eyes, “You always seem to know a guy like that.”
Kon was spared a reply as Stephanie called out to him. The meta turned his attention to the blonde as she waved a large parcel, “Your Aunt Martha got something for me too?”
“She pretty much sent something for everyone.”
“And it’s always a nice warm sweater. Say thanks to her wouldja Kon?” Dick’s words were muffled as he pulled the blue sweater over his head. He ran a hand over his hair before showing his sweater off to Steph. “What’d she make on yours?”
As Stephanie showed off the cable knit sweater, Kon turned to Tim. “There’s a lot more presents here than the others…”, he pondered aloud as he pulled two more forward. Tim felt a flush run up his neck as Kon pushed a soft package into his hands, “Em actually….most of them are…yours.”
Kon paused, a long strand of ribbon dangling from his hand as he eloquently asked, “Huh?”
Tim took a deep breath, in the hopes of calming down the thundering sound of his heartbeat. After a shaky exhale, he repeated, “Most of those presents are yours. I….kinda went a bit overboard.”
Kon broke his stare to glance at the present pile remaining, “Kinda went beyond overboard there dude.”
Guilt and nervousness thrashed inside his stomach as he watched the lack of emotions play across Kon’s face. He could an uncharacteristic urge to start babbling and ruthlessly squished it down. Instead he quietly apologized, “I’m sorry.”
That caught Kon’s attention, and fast. He turned around to frown in confusion at the despondent man, “What for?”
Tim waved a hand at the brightly wrapped boxes, “For…those. For going overboard.”
Kon scratched the back of his neck, “I gotta admit. It’s a bit…” Tim waited, tense and ready for any kind of rebuke. “weird.”
Tim looked up from the hardwood floor in surprise. “Weird?” he parroted.
Kon shrugged helplessly, “You know how I am with words. Its just…I know you. You probably just got carried away.” Kon snorted in amusement, “I bet you were really worked up trying to think of a good present. And probably couldn’t think of one. Right?”
Tim narrowed his eyes in suspicion, “How did you…”
Kon lightly bopped him on the head with a box lid, “I remember what you were like the first time we exchanged presents. You haven’t changed much since then. Still driving yourself crazy over the little things.”
Tim’s flush returned with a vengeance as he fiddled with the ribbons of his gift. He was touched beyond belief that Kon remembered something from so long ago. He was also mortified beyond reason that Kon still remembered how nuts he’d gone trying to find perfect presents for his YJ team mates.
He looked up at Kon with a curious-worried expression, “You arn’t…mad about this..are you?” The heavy feeling which has persisted for days began to lighten as Kon chuckled and pulled Tim closer by tugging his wrist. “No you dork, I’m not mad.”
The pair watched an irate Damian being held down by Cassandra as he screamed bloody murder at a laughing Jason. The boy clearly didn’t appreciate receiving a ruffled mini skirt as a present. Stephanie was attempting to calm Damian down but Jason’s comment on how the younger boy had also gotten stockings to go with the skirt was akin to someone pressing the rewind button on her progress.
Kon snorted in amusement as he watched the youngest Wayne wriggle and yell. He lightly tapped the side of his head against Tim’s, “You need to learn to chill a little bit though. And not worry about stupid things. You coulda gotten me a bag and I’d have been alright with it.”
He leaned in further, whispering into Tim’s ear (taking silent note of the shudder Tim managed to control), “Especially if you’d been in the bag.” He chuckled as Tim shoved him away, pink cheeked and amused as he brought his attention back to the present in his lap.
“Hey, cloney! Babybird!”
The pair turned their attention at the voice, Tim neatly catching the large box Red Hood tossed their way. The pair stared for a moment at the simply wrapped box before looking up at a grinning Jason. “Merry Christmas.”
“Thanks. You too.” Blue eyes suddenly darted to look at Tim with surprise as the older boy raised his mug at them. Tim let Kon pull the box out of his hands and the older boy noted that Bruce had handed Jason a package. But he turned his attention back to the meta in front of him as he muttered, “I didn’t think that your brothers would get me something too.”
Kon began to rip the red wrapping paper off along with Tim’s help. “You got them gifts too. It’s only fair.” Tim’s gave him a small smile which the meta returned. “I kinda wish that I got to know about those gag gifts before though. Then I’d ha-” Tim watched as Kon’s expression suddenly shifted from joy to surprise to to horror before culminating in embarrassment.
Tim’s eyes immediately darted down to the box and he wanted to run into the Cave, find the darkest corner possible and just stay there until his mortification went away. Which could possibly be in another 10 years. At best estimate. He looked up when he heard Jason let out a yelp and Stephanie groan loudly.
The other inhabitants of the room were openly curious what had caused both couples to stop in their tracks and act as though they were facing off Two Face without a weapon at hand. Damian quickly darted up behind Jason and Steph on the sofa, just as Alfred and Cassandra leaned in to take a look. Dick opted to shift beside Kon and lean on the meta’s shoulder to look inside the opened box.
There was a loud chortle of laughter from Dick as he leaned on a frozen Kon for support. Cassandra was pursing her lips together, in amusement and a hint of embarrassment for the people involved. Damian’s -tt- was hidden underneath Alfred’s cool comment of “Prophylactics, Sir? As a Christmas present?”
Bruce was unmoved as he sat in his seat. His steepled fingers pressed lightly against his lips as he eyed Jason and Stephanie in front of him. His eyes went to Dick, who was weakly snickering as he wiped tears out of his eyes. “Jason got them condoms too. Talk about great minds think alike.”
Bruce didn’t seem surprised at all at hearing that and now was staring intently at Kon and Tim. Kon wondered briefly how it was that the Bats seemed to give the impression of wearing a cape and mask even when they weren’t. It was the best act of intimidation he had ever come across. Kon exhaled shakily as Bruce turned his gaze back at Jason and weakly asked Tim, “Is the lack of breathing a normal thing when Batman glares at you?”
Tim was spared from giving a reply as Bruce kept his attention on Jason. “I don’t think I need to tell you two to be careful.” And then he felt his breath catch and his entire system seize a little as Bruce turned his hard gaze towards him and Kon. “Or you two for that matter.”
There was complete silence in the room, broken only by the sound of the crackling fire place. Dick gently poked Kon and then Tim, “Jeez Bruce, I think you just spooked their souls out or something.”
Bruce was clearly not sharing in Dick’s amusement as he eyed his first Robin. Dick’s lips twisted up in a smile as he held his hands up in a gesture of defeat. Batman’s voice was low and dangerous as he spoke, “I’ll be watching you four. I do not want to find out that any of you are pregnant.”
There was a shift in the silence - going from terrified to confused as a few people exchanged glances. Cassandra was the one who spoke was most of them were thinking, “Stephanie is a girl so I understand why you would warn her. But Tim and Kon are boys….”
There was a subtle shift in Bruce’s body, going from intimidating to slightly irritated as he spoke, “Kon-el is Kryptonian, for all we know Kryptonian males are capable of completing a full term pregnancy.”
Kon was going an excellent impression of a goldfish gasping for breath as he stared at Bruce with wide eyes. His gaze darted between him and the box filled with condoms before he began to ramble. “B-but we don’t even need these! This is a present for people who are having sex!”
“KON!”, Tim’s mortified yelp made the meta slap a hand over his mouth, both of them staring at each other with wide blue eyes.
Dick began to snicker again as he shifted behind his younger brother and draped himself over the younger boy’s shoulders. “Going out for a whole year and you’ve still not had sex? Tsk tsk tsk.” Dick waggled a finger of disapproval in Tim’s face, “That’s just not done Timmers! You’re supposed to help your boyfriend avoid blue balls. Not give him the worst case of blue balls ever.”
Damian rolled his eyes and snorted in contempt, “I hardly think that is sound advice coming from a man who chooses to lie down on his first date.”
Dick’s “Hey! What’s that supposed to mean?” was drowned out as Damian began to rant about the oldest son’s habits. Dick began to whine about the injustice of his youngest brother not loving him right as Stephanie began to wallop Jason over the head with a cushion for some reason. Cassandra and Alfred were islands of calm as they watched from their perches and sipped hot cocoa. Bruce was serenely smiling at the chaos in front of him.
Tim eyed the mayhem in front of him and felt himself slowly return to normal. He shifted slightly to look at Kon. The meta was staring at the scene in front of him, a smile growing on his lips as he watched Cassandra easily avoid Jason and Stephanie as they paced and ranted. He noticed Tim’s gaze on him and nodded towards Dick as he hung over Damian, “Is it always so crazy every year?”
Tim’s gave him a small laugh, “Pretty much.”
Kon’s laugh was slightly louder as he reached for Tim’s hand. Tim laced his fingers through Kon’s, leaning against his shoulder with a small content sigh. “Though last year was crazier. Cassandra discovered silly string and snow in a can and went on a ‘decorating’ spree of her own.”
The rumbles of Kon’s amused chuckles made a content warmth spread through him, even amidst all the din and noise.
“Thanks for being here Kon.” and he squeezed Kon’s hand gently.
The returning squeeze made his smile grow, “Thanks for inviting me. And for all the presents.” Kon smiled wanly, “Though, next year…how about we set some kind of limit or something?”
A multitude of emotions ran through him. Relief at being forgiven. Joy at Kon’s easy assumption of their relationship’s continuity. Eagerness for the next year. He chose to smile back, “Sounds like a good plan.” and turned to watch as Dick neatly dodged a thrust from Damian’s new knife as he dangled a black miniskirt from his hands.
“Pass the cookies please.”
I'm never doing a Batfam Christmas fic again so help me God.