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A kiss out of habit

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None of the Bats are at their best in the early morning. Between their ‘night job’ and their dependence on caffeine to keep them all going, Alfred is used to seeing unfocused eyes around the breakfast table.

Jason is the only one here at the moment, his hands curled around a mug of hot tea, his t-shirt inside out, and his hair looking like it hasn’t seen a comb in days. He’d grunted once at Alfred when he walked in, but hasn’t said a single word since. Alfred thinks he should maybe be offended by the lack of acknowledgement, but his delight at having Jason back in the mansion outweighs any lack of proprietary.

When Dick walks in, Alfred stands up from his seat to pour a coffee, this one with cream and sugar and a dash of that vanilla syrup he knows is desired.

“Good morning, Master Richard,” he says as Dick shuffles around the kitchen, looking for who-knows-what. He holds out the overly-sweetened concoction. “I have your beverage here.”

Dick looks up at him, as if noticing him for the first time and smiles. Even half-asleep, his smile is genuine and fills Alfred’s heart with joy. When Dick’s mother first named him for the cheerful robin, she definitely knew what she was doing.

Taking the cup, Dick gives Alfred a brief hug as thanks. Alfred simply shakes his head, gives a small laugh, and returns to his seat at the table to continue his own breakfast. He watches as Dick walks towards Jason, his eyes slightly more focused than before, but his brain still not quite firing on all cylinders, as Master Wayne sometimes says.

“Morning Little Wing,” Dick mumbles. He puts his hand on Jason’s shoulder and then, seemingly without thinking, leans down and kisses the crown of Jason’s head. Jason grunts in response, reaching his own hand up and patting the one Dick has on his shoulder.

Alfred smiles to himself. This same routine has happened every morning for the last week, although he’s fairly certain neither Dick nor Jason is actually aware of their actions. He doesn’t think they’d be this affectionate towards each other if they were fully awake, although he suspects it’s only a matter of time before his two eldest boys become aware of the feelings that Alfred can clearly see.

For now, he thinks as he picks up his own tea and takes a sip, he’ll just enjoy this little scene each morning.