Months after going dark, the Red Hood surfaces in Gotham.
The probability of him returning at the same time a prominent politician gets away with his sixth (at the bare minimum) rape being coincidental is next to zero. Father wanted to confront the omega, but Grayson had insisted that he and Damian were the best choice. They catch Todd just before he can slaughter a politician publicly known to be a serial rapist. The accused is unconscious and tied up, prepared for execution.
“Don’t you see how this is destroying you?“ Grayson pleads. It’s almost nauseating to watch him go from self assured alpha, nearly everyone’s idol, to something so broken so quickly. Damian is pretty sure he’s on the verge crying.
Todd doesn’t appear moved, but it’s hard to tell with that stupid red helmet. Nothing can be gained from the voice modifier either. “I’m doing what needs to be done.”
“You don’t need to do this.” Grayson snaps. It’s almost an alpha command, but it’s too pleading for that. He still looks broken, but now there’s an edge that Damian can’t define.
An almost imperceptible tremor makes Todd’s aim waver but the gun doesn’t lower. Not even when Grayson throws himself at Todd, one arm hooking under the omega’s outstretched one and wrapping around his back. The other tugs at the latches of Todd’s helmet before pulling the ugly thing free.
Guilt spears Damian where he stands. Todd is crying.
“Oh, little wing.” Grayson breathes and brushes his hand across their broth— the criminal’s cheek, bruised from the fight with the senator, and then tugs Todd’s head down so their foreheads press together. “Come home, please.”
“This scum—, N— he—” Todd seems to be choking on the words. His gun lowers to the ground, away from the unconscious potential senator. “I can’t.”
“I know, Jason. I know.” Grayson soothes, pulling Todd closer, like that’s all it will take to bring the murdering psychopath home. Damian’s surprised the Hood hasn’t just shot all three of them and called it a night. They should take advantage of this weakness and Grayson is squandering it when he insists, “We’ll take care of him the right way. He’s not going to hurt anyone else.”
“You can’t promise that.” Todd jerks free. His eyes are wild and his voice trembles. He looks.... he looks like the omegas who had testified in the senator’s trial. It’s not a pleasant realization. “You put him in jail and he’ll buy his way out in a week.”
Grayson reaches for Todd again, no doubt wanting to use physical touch to settle him. It’s a typical alpha tactic for calming omegas. Then he pauses and something in him seems to harden as he turns to Damian. He holds out a hand. “Give me Jason’s knife.”
“Nightwing.” Damian pulls back with a shake of his head. “Returning a league knife to the Red Hood would be ill advised.”
“Now.” Grayson snaps and takes a step closer. Against his better judgement, Damian obeys.
Instead of returning the knife back to its owner, the alpha stalks towards the senator. With a voice like ice and an expression even colder, Grayson plants one foot on the unconscious man’s chest and leans down. “He’s never going to hurt again, not you or anyone else.”
Todd hesitates near the window he was preparing to leave through. With his hood gone, the omega is surprisingly expressive. His face reads fearful and resigned. He still expects Grayson to turn on him.
With good reason, Damian thinks. They should turn on him, take him back to Arkham where he’s not a danger to himself or anyone else. Damian has seen pit madness before and he recognizes it in the omega. He opens his mouth to voice this opinion but before he can, Grayson has jerked the politician’s pants and underwear down to expose him with a harsh growl. Damian’s mouth goes dry as he realizes what’s going to happen.
Without fanfare, Grayson takes the knife and lops the man’s dick off below the knot.
Damian’s never seen his oldest brother like this, so furiously angry. He doesn’t like it. Maybe Grayson isn’t completely sunshine and rainbows like Drake always complains, but the man has alwaysbeen the voice of reason. He talks Damian down from maiming, helps him to channel his aggression. Never has he seen Grayson deliberately injure someone with such cold, impassive, fury. It’s against everything the alpha stands for.
But while Damian is stunned, Todd seems completely frightened. They both watch the blood well up, frozen in place. A whine, the high pitch a note only omegas can reach, escapes from the throat of Gotham’s terror.
Todd moves first, hesitantly walking towards Grayson. The insufferable oaf appears to be deliberately staying between Damian and their older brother. He keeps his hands up, trying to placate Grayson. As though Todd hadn’t been prepared to murder the man just minutes ago. As though Damian can’t protect himself, even if Grayson does go feral.
“I told you, you’re not an acceptable loss.” Grayson merely shushes him gently, moving closer to kiss the omega’s forehead. His hand smears blood across Todd’s cheekbone and then leisurely goes about stopping the bleeding as he taps his comm and calls for an ambulance.
Todd freezes again and shakes out of whatever daze he’s in only at the sirens approach. Grayson follows him, leaning Damian behind to deal with the cops and medics. After a slight hesitation, he kicks the dismembered body part halfway under the desk before it can be spotted by the paramedics. Regardless of anything else, Damian knows for a fact the politician shouldn’t have his genitals reattached. His sins are numerous and well documented, the only reason the alpha isn’t behind bars is because of his money.
They get the man on a stretcher while Damian describes the scene as best he can without implicating Grayson or Todd.
“Possible motive for the attack?” The officer asks.
Damian hesitates. “I suspect... It is likely the attacker was the family member of a victim.”
The officer nods and turns to talk to his partner. Damian takes the chance to escape out the window. It’s a few seconds climb to the roof where Todd is bent nearly double, gasping out each breath painfully. Every time Grayson tries to step closer, Jason scrambles away with a high pitched whine.
“We need to leave before the police finally think to look up here.” Damian’s voice is cold, dispassionate. He doesn’t know how to express the fear and worry he feels watching the pack omega have a panic attack.
“If you have a way to get him back to the manor let me know.” Dick bares his teeth, snapping them before swearing when that just upsets Todd further. “Shh, no little wing. I’m not mad at you.”
With a quiet harrumph, Damian scans the scene and quickly notes that both men are deep in their instincts and neither is handling it particularly well. Peeling away the scent blockers hurts like pulling off a bandaid. It’s negligible in the grand scheme of things, but hurts profusely when done slowly. He lets the minor pain fuel his whine as the faintest hint of worry curls through his adolescent scent.
It gets the attention of his brothers, Todd’s breathing evening out with his attention somewhere else.
“Robin?” Dick takes a step towards him.
With a dramatic whimper that would leave him ashamed if Jon ever heard it, Damian collapses. “My leg hurts.”
Dick’s rational mind is close enough to the surface that he just pauses to tip his head in confusion. Todd’s is not. The omega scrambles across the rooftop to his side. Large gentle hands start checking for breaks and then pull him onto the omega’s lap. Before he can jerk away in protest, Todd tucks Damian’s face against his neck and curls tight around him.
“Richard.” Damian puffs out, because he had only meant to distract—not become the focus of omega instincts. Before he can start squirming, Todd starts up a comforting purr and swipes his cheek across Damian’s head. The scent naturally produced along the cheek is fairly weak so it’s rare that they bother to spray blocker over their face, leaving Todd able to scent him. “Richard, what is he doing?”
“He’s taking care of a hurt pup.” Grayson sounds choked up, the over emotional fool. This time when the kneels down next to Todd, the omega doesn’t flinch away. Grayson’s fingers, slender for an alpha’s, comb through Damian’s hair and then pulls the omega-pup bundle close. “Come on, little wing. I need you to help me get Damian to a nest.”
“He needs his nest.” Todd repeats, breathing directly into Damian’s face. Normally he’d shove the omega away for daring such a thing; normally Ja— Todd would be doing it just to get on his nerves.
Damian doesn’t like the cold pit of worry settling in his stomach. Pressing his face tighter to the omega’s neck, he breathes in all the smells that help make up Todd . Gunpowder, leather, and the faintest hint of the omega’s vanilla-honey scent.
Grayson helps Todd to his feet and they carefully make their way back to the cave. The other members of their pack have already returned and changed, even Father is halfway out of the batsuit. Both he and Pennyworth rush forward at the sight of Grayson’s bloody appearance. They’re probably not reassured when he doesn’t jerk out of Todd’s bruising grip.
Grayson rushes forward before they can try to do something foolish like pull Damian from the omega. There is no doubt that Todd plans to escape the second he’s not needed. That means it’s Damian’s job to make sure he’s needed until Grayson can properly trap him in the manor.
Without the interference, Todd heads straight upstairs. Though he can’t have been up into the manor in years, he strides confidently through the maze of hallways to a room that has been forbidden all the years Damian has lived with the pack.
Todd throws the door open carelessly, like he has every right to.
Well, Damian reflects as he scans the time capsule of a room, he supposes Todd does have every right. The omega sets him on the bed and then, to Damian’s utter confusion, drops down to half crawl under the bed. He shuffles something around under there and then pops back up to grab Damian.
Before he can do more than squirm in the air uncomfortably he’s shoved into a pile of blankets and laundry. He tries to sit up, but Todd pushes him back down and tucks a large blue-black sheet around him in a way that’s somehow both comforting and confining.
In the background Drake and Brown can be heard firing questions off, one after another. Grayson is struggling to answer them while still reassuring Father that no one is truly hurt. He hears them all fall silent at the doorway.
“He took Dami to his nest.” Grayson breathes, sounding almost like he’s crying. “Bruce...”
Father doesn’t reply. His footsteps sound closer and the father has dropped down to his knees. The fearsome Batman just stares at him for a moment. Damian shifts uncomfortably under his gaze. “I assure you this was—“
“You brought him home. Thank you.” Damian isn’t sure that was meant to be said out loud it was so quiet. Father bends down and presses his forehead against Damian’s before he gently pulls Todd into his arms. The omega trembles against their father. Their pack alpha growls fiercely and squeezes tighter. “Mine. You’re mine.”
Todd breaks into quiet, gasping sobs.
Pounding footsteps bring the rest of the room forward as one. Seconds later Drake has been pushed into the nest next to Damian. Brown carefully crawls in, “I’m going, Cass. ‘S okay. No need to shove.”
“I will get Duke.” Cain brushes her cheek against Father’s. “Pups need nest.”
Bruce rumbles his agreement, pushing Todd under the bed until Damian is pinned between the omega and Drake. For a brief moment Todd struggles, but gives in when Grayson crawls under the bed too, settling in above their heads. He gives Damian’s nose a comforting lick and then nuzzles the top of Todd’s head while reaching towards Drake. Father also settles down on the floor, along the length of the bed. Everyone is silent, other than Todd’s hiccuped breathing and Drake’ quiet protests at being denied his phone.
Damian should try to escape, but having lived with the pack for a few years he knows it’s futile.
“This family is nuts. We should all be asleep.” Thomas protests. “I was asleep.”
Pennyworth’s amusement can be felt even without being able to see him. “I believe the others are already in bed, Master Duke. The only ones still up and about are you and Miss Cassandra”
Thomas gives a low grumble at that, but obediently lets Cain guide him under the bed. “You all need help, I swear— is someone bleeding?”
“Grayson amputated a politician’s penis and neglected to clean himself afterward.”
“I’m clean! I rinsed off with a cloth on the way up.”
Everyone shuffles around in the cramped space, clamoring for an explanation. Damian has taken three elbows to his gut and one kick to the head by the time Jason tips his head back with a heavy whine. Father wraps an arm around the omega firmly and nips the soft skin the omega bares. Their pack alpha lets out a rough alpha command. “Enough. We’ll deal with everything tomorrow. Right now it’s time to sleep.”
“Some of us were already asleep.” Thomas mutters, settling in across Damian’s legs.
It’s uncomfortable, pressed up against so many pack members, and unsettlingly strange but when Todd noses at his cheek questioningly, a small warmth builds in his chest. He lets the omega arrange him against the curve of the older boy’s body. Todd gives a few quiet coos, still not quite out of his instincts’ hold if he’s calling to Damian like he’s the omega’s pup. Still, he yips quietly in return.
He tells himself that it’s just to insure that Todd remains subdued.
It’s not an excuse the others will believe. As the alphas all begin to rumble out contented purrs, he settles closer to Todd’s soft warmth. It’s fine, they can believe what they want. Damian is comfortable and if being wrapped up and snuggled close reminds him vaguely of an omega his mother was briefly obsessed with, well... no one needs to know that either.