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It was a weirdly quiet night for Jason, despite the fact the Joker had broken out of Arkham four days ago. The clown had vanished soon after and the Bats had been on high alert. Jason hadn't gone out for two days, not because he was scared of the man; rather, he was scared he'd lose control if he found himself in a confrontation with him. He'd been doing better lately, quashing the Pits' urges to kill and maim, his bullets were rubber and the Bats actually invited him over sometimes. It was nice, but with this, Jason wasn't going to involve anyone else, at least not around himself, who knew if the Pit would stop at just the Joker or if it would turn on whoever the closest sibling was. 


But, after two days of a no show Jason had to go back to patrol, lest the Alley and its controlled crime get any ideas that there was availability in management. Joker was obviously cooking up something big or maybe he was just being melodramatic and leaving everyone in fear and wait…. Jason didn't care either way. As long as the Clown stayed away from him, he was fine… okay that was a lie, Jason really wanted the man dead but Bruce and Alfred wouldn't approve and he was only just getting back on Bruce's good side. 


Even with the Joker out though, it was too quiet. Jason didn't like it when it was quiet, it was suspicious. 


Jason patrolled nonetheless, he stopped a couple of muggings and did a little Intel collection on a new drug ring before he overheard the gossip. 


"Din'ya 'ear, Joker nabbed 'imself a birdie." 


“Oh? He did? Well fuck, betta’ get off tha’ streets. S’gonna be runnin’ red.”

“Hell yeah. I don’ wanna be out when Bats and Joker clash again.”

And Jason was instantly down on the two.


“Oh fuck!”


“Don’t shoot, please!” The two men instantly were on the defensive as Jason shoved his gun under the chin of the first man who seemed to know more.


“Wha’ tha’ fuck did ya’ jus’ say?” Hood spat.


“Joker, he got lil’ Robin, holled up down by tha’ Bowery.”

“Address now or I shoot ya’ through ya’ kneecaps.” Jason threatened because neither of these men knew his bullets were rubber and were one step away from losing their bladders in fear. The first man rattled out an address, a collection of warehouses (because it was always fucking warehouses)  and Jason was gone, not evening sparing either thug another minute of his time. Jason didn’t even bother patching into the Batchannel he’d been give access to. At a time like this he hoped Bruce knew but if he didn’t Jason couldn’t be around, couldn’t be witness to Bruce failing another Robin without the Pit boiling from under his skin. Jason had to go alone for this because if Bruce knew or not, Jason couldn’t care less. He was going to kill the Joker for even looking at Damian let alone taking him and- God, Jason had no idea how long the baby bat had been with the clown. Jason almost cursed himself for listening to Bruce, for not shooting the Joker himself when he had the chance. If he had back then sure the family would probably hate him, hell he might even be in Arkham but Damian would have been safe.


“I’m coming, Baby bat, hold on.” Jason exhaled quietly into the quiet Gotham night, a silent promise.


The journey took next to no time, Jason frantically grappling over the rooftops, as soon as he was close enough to the building he could hear the laughter, the terrible sounds that bounced off empty walls and was accompanied by the faintest of thuds. Jason managed to grapple down to peer through a skylight and instantly found Damian at the mercy of the clown. He, thankfully, didn’t look as bad as Jason expected but considering Jason genuinely expected him to be dead that didn’t really mean much… Instead he very clearly had at least one broken leg, though the other didn’t look in great shape either, a multitude of scrapes and cuts and blood that had Jason fight down the green in his chest. One arm was… yikes Jason didn’t even want to delve into that train of thought. It all ended anyway, as soon as Jason saw the glint of the crowbar he was through the windows and on the clown. When later questioned, Jason would reply he didn’t remember anything past this point, he wouldn’t be lying. 


Nightwing was first to the scene, the entire clan having been searching for Damian as soon as word had come through the Robin had thought it wise to try and take the man on alone rather than wait for backup. Joker was already long dead, Nightwing had to do a double take because for one chilling moment he’d thought the blood to be Damian’s but no. Huddled in one corner, in a pretty shit shape but conscious and aware was Damian, one arm in a makeshift sling made from his cape and one leg laid out and vaguely wrapped against a piece of broken plank as a splint. Hovering over Damian though, arms splayed wide by either side of him was Jason, lips tugged into a feral snarl, eyes glowing in the darkness. Dick took a step back against every part of him that shouted that it was his brothers who needed him. He’d never see Jason’s eyes so green, so utterly swimming in the Pits influence. If the Pit had deemed Damian worth protecting, then Dick wasn’t going to try and approach until he was certain Jason wouldn’t attack. Instead, Dick carefully crouched, a distance away, constantly locked under Jason’s gaze. He slowly placed his escrima sticks down beside him and held up his hands. Jason’s teeth were still bared in threat, there was blood up his arms, his hands practically coated in the stuff and jesus. There was even blood in his teeth and on his face. His brother looked like a wild animal.  


“Akhi, Safe.” Damian coughed out, winching when he spoke, so likely broken ribs too. Dick held his breath and it took an immense amount of willpower to not rush over to their aid.


“Robin, you okay?” Dick asked quietly, earning a growl from Jason but no movement.


“Mh. Nothing lethal, Nightwing,” Was Damian’s clinical report despite the wince and the lack of function in two of his limbs.


“Hood drowned in the Pit’s influences and tore the Clown apart. I could do little to stop him, I'm afraid.” Damian gave another vague wince and his good (but not good… ‘better’) arm rubbed at his ribs.


“Try not to speak too much if your ribs are broken.” Dick spoke softly and then carefully raised a hand to his ear.


“Nightwing here, I’ve located Robin.” Dick relayed and sent off the address amongst the flurry of questions and noise. “Conscious and not in any immediate medical attention but he’s gonna need a serious check over, definitely at least a broken arm, leg and ribs.” Dick relayed, “Can someone bring a Tranquilliser too? A strong one.”


“What for? What's happening?”

“What about Joker?”

“NW Don’t engage!”


“Joker’s dead.” Dick replied over the speaking. Everything fell silent. “I hope he is at least, if he’s survived the mauling he looks to have had then…” Dick trailed noticing the missing ear. Jesus was that why Jason had blood on his teeth, red dribbling down his chin? Had his Baby Brother tore off the clown's ear with his own teeth? Dick gave a steady exhale. He wasn’t going to panic. Nope


“Is Hood hurt?” Dick asked and Damian nodded. Dick couldn’t properly assess anything at a glance because his Lil' Wing was covered in so much blood it was hard to distinguish anything at all.


“Sustained four gunshot wounds, two are likely grazes, one to the shoulder and another to the lower abdomen. He didn’t slow and I don’t know how effective his body armour was. The Pit makes it hard for me to observe typical reactions.” Damian wheezed and Jason snarled again, otherwise being silent, staring at Dick the entire time. “Hood only had Rubber Bullets on him when he attacked, the Pit was in control the entire time.” Damian continued and then coughed, palm coming away from his mouth covered in splashes of blood.


“You don’t need to explain anymore Dami, wait till everyone gets here, you need some medical asap, Lil’ Wing too.”


“Why do you need Tranquillisers, Wing, come in!”


“Just hurry your asses up.”  Dick snapped. “Hood got here first, why else would the Joker be dead?” Dick snarked, because he knew at least Bruce assumed it was him when he’d reported earlier.


“Hoods there? Is he okay?”



“On route.”

Dick scoffed. “He’s absolutely out of his mind under the Pit, I can’t get anywhere near Robin and Hood’s seriously going to need some blood work tests. I don’t even wanna think about how much blood he’s accidentally consumed.” Dick was 100% stressing over that little fact because god knows what was in Joker's blood.


“Okay, fuck.” That was Tim and very eloquently put.


Cass was next to arrive, touching down silently through the smashed overhead window, dropping behind Dick and instantly raising her own hands when Jason snarled, teeth clicking and hands twitching despite being empty. It apparently hadn’t stopped Jason though, the blood on his fingers (and likely skin up the nails) showed he’d mostly fought the Clown barehanded and with his teeth.


“Brother.” Cass crooned, softly and Jason twitched but didn’t back down, head tilted slightly though. Tim and Steph were next and Tim actually managed to edge closer to them without as much threat against him. He got up to 10 feet when Jason let out an animalistic snarl and had to stop. But it was progress. Eventually Bruce touched down, Duke at his heels.


“Signal, think you can get this done?” The tranq was passed to Duke who nodded. It was his speciality after all, to get past people's senses. Jason never saw it coming and only after they were certain he was out of it did the clan pounce, Damian secured against Dick’s chest, little muffled noises of pain at behind jostled, while Bruce made a point of ignoring the sight of the corpse and the blood to pull Jason up into his own arms, the only one who could even attempt to carry the man.


The journey back to the cave was swift, Damian was instantly under Alfred's care, Dick pitching in where needed while Bruce dealt with Jason. Peeling  off the armour, Bruce was grateful to discover neither of the bullet wounds Dick had relayed information about on the drive back had pierced the armour enough to hit Jason’s skin. The only visible points that needed sorting were the blood stained teeth and…well the blood everywhere. It wasn’t hygienic in the slightest. With no injuries that needed sorting and Damian under the best care, Bruce had Tim collect him a big bowl of soapy water and some gloves. The rest of the clan were waiting upstairs out of the way and eagerly awaiting information.


Once Tim had brought over what was asked, he slid over to Dick and Alfred.


“I’m fine, get away from me Drake.” Damian snapped but with no malice.


“Whatever you say, Demon.” Tim wasn't convinced at all, of course.


While the muted conversation between the two brothers quietened down, Bruce zoned out and made the meticulous act of wiping down Jason gently, any and all blood he could find he carefully soaked away, taking care not to jostle the man too much lest the tranquillisers wear off too soon. If not for the anxiety still in his chest, Bruce would have found the action calming, but until Jason woke up and B could make certain he was okay he wouldn’t be able to relax.


Eventually, once Bruce was almost done, long after Damian had been fully seen to and left to rest, Alfred and Tim departed upstairs while Dick pulled up a chair for ‘first watch’ Jason stirred. For a second the man tensed and shot a green glare at Bruce but as soon as he met the others eyes he relaxed, blue washing over everything.



“Hey Jaylad, you okay?”

“Dami- Is he-”

“He’s okay, he’s asleep. You saved him.” Bruce explained softly, still carefully working on scrubbing the blood from under Jason’s nails. Jason followed Bruce’s eyes and felt his own face soften at the action.


“Thanks B.” Jason mumbled. “Did he- Is he dead?”

“Yes. He's dead.”

“Good. I’m not going to apologise. He hurt Habibi.”


“And you saved him.” Bruce reiterated. Later, when he could think properly amidst all the worry and concern he’d endured this evening, Bruce might find it in himself to be angry about Jason murdering the Joker, but right now? Right now the only thing Bruce could feel was overwhelming relief, that both of the boys had returned alive and mostly well.


That was everything he prayed for.