Past Horrors

New Dreams: A New Beginning

Anger made his sight turn bloody, but he found he couldn't quite hold it against them, him. They did it for a good reason. At least there was that much. Dick sighed. He didn't know what it was that he was going to do, but even then as he went through the zeta beam, he knew it would be insane.

Taking a deep breath, he looked up at the cave.

"Back so soon, Master Dick?" A voice asked him.

He smiled. Good old Alfred at least would never change. But there was something wrong. He couldn't stay, even for Alfred. As crazy as it sounded, he had to go.

"Alfred," The tone of his voice, betraying him in it's sadness and broken trust, alerted him immediately, "I can't stay. I have to leave."

"Leave? Wherever will you go, Master Dick?" Alfred stopped dusting in the seriousness of the matter. "What about being Robin?"

Dick bit his lip. "I don't know, but I can't stay here as Dick or Robin. I just need to go. But I want to keep helping people." He added, looking up to see a fondness in the eyes of his grandfather-figure. "I can't stay. I just need time to cool off. And I need to get away from Bruce." He sighed. "I just need time."

Alfred nodded, a sparkle in his dark, yet light eyes. "I may have just the thing."

With that, he stepped out of the light and disappeared only to reappear just a moment later with a black bag. He held it as if it were more precious than gold. "Since you were getting a tad large for your other costume, I took it upon myself to make a new one. It is rather easy to spot, but it can become darker when you need be." He smiled, running a hand over the black bag. "Master Bruce has not yet seen it."

Dick understood. Bruce hadn't planted anything on it. He wouldn't be tracked. He walked over, taking it gently. "Thank you, Alfred."

Then, without warning, he tackled the butler in a breathtaking hug. Then he pulled himself away. Alfred smiled at him sadly. "When might I expect you back, Master Dick?"

Dick bit his lip, a far away look crossing his dark eyes. "I don't know. A few months? A year?"

Alfred nodded. "Make sure you send a card, then."

"Bye, Alfie." Dick whispered after a long moment, sounding as young as he was the first time that he came up with the name.

"Goodbye, Master Dick." He went back to dusting, then, as if he were trying to lift Dick's spirits, he added, "Be home by time dinner is made. No later."

Dick bowed his head. "Have I ever been?" And he left the one who hadn't betrayed him looking slightly sadder as he did his chore without complaint.

Dick went to pack his things.

. . .

It must have been two in the morning when Batgirl finally got back to her home. After she changed into pajamas, she fell onto her bed. Her red hair fell into curls around her, but she was so tired she didn't care.

But she opened her eyes just the same as she realized that there was a figure blocking the moonlight through her window. There, sitting on the windowsill, was Dick. He looked sort of sad and, even though she could have collapsed any moment into a peaceful sleep, she couldn't help but notice a bag in one hand.

"I'm leaving." He said after a moment.

In that instant, she was jolted awake. She jumped up. "What?"

He looked at her. "I thought you deserved a goodbye."

"But you can't leave!" She yelled, then quieted her voice as she heard her dad muttering in his sleep across the hall. "You can't leave!"

There was a sad glint in his eyes. "I can't stay. Thanks for everything, but I just can't."

She stared at him, tears in her eyes. "So that's it? Thanks for saving me, being my friend all these years, and sticking up for me-Bye!"

He shook his head. "It's not like that at all."

She wrapped her arms around herself self-consciously. She figured that this was what it felt like to be truly rejected. "Then what is it like?"

He sighed. "Bruce lied to me. My team lied to me." His voice was still freshly hurt. "They thought I couldn't handle the truth of what happened on the mission. But it doesn't matter anymore. I can't stay somewhere where no one trusts that I can watch out for myself. I can't stay somewhere where everyone has already proven that they can't trust me because of my age or what I've been through. I'm sorry." He looked up at her and drew a shaky breath. "I'm saying my goodbyes to you and Roy, then I'm gone."

She blinked back fresh tears. "Where? How long?"

"I don't know." He replied. "Wherever the road leads me, I guess." Then he smiled. "I promise to write."

Barbara nodded. She pulled him into a hug. "You better, boy blunder, otherwise I'll come and get you."

Dick would never admit it, but he lost his voice for a second, especially when he felt a distinct wetness on the back of his neck. "Pinky-swear."

They stayed like that for a long time until Dick finally separated himself, waved, and slipped into the night. Barbara just stared. She wouldn't be getting to bed any time soon.

. . .

Roy didn't know what time it was when he opened his eyes, but he knew extremely well that the sun wasn't up and that that meant that his eyes shouldn't have been either. Of course, though, there was an acrobat in his room anyway. So, grumpily, he forced his eyes open and sat up. The kid didn't seem bothered that all Roy wore were his boxers and his undershirt.

Dick looked at him solemnly. "I'm leaving. Not going back to the manner."

Roy's jaw dropped. He was so surprised that he couldn't say anything.

"I don't know where I'm going, but you're not going to see me for a while. I figured you deserved a goodbye, though." Dick nodded. Sure enough, on his shoulder was a pack of things that he would need while on his little soul-changing journey.

"I-I understand." Roy stuttered. "Call if you ever need anything, kid."

He nodded, "Thanks, Roy."

Roy tried to smile, but his face still felt in shock. "Yeah."

It took a moment before Dick saluted him with a mocking smile on his face. "I'll catch you another time, then."

"Wait!" Roy called, just finding his voice before the kid disappeared for years on him. He got up and walked over to the kid, who had actually started to grow, believe it or not. He hugged the kid in a bone-crushing embrace. "You better not die on me." Just like that, it had never happened.

Dick smiled a real smile. "See ya, Speedy!"

"It's Red Arrow!" He growled at the empty room, but he couldn't deny he was smiling.

Maybe he would go back to being Speedy one of these days. But it would take a lot to mend that broken bridge. It would probably be more likely than Robin and Batman regaining their old relationship, though.

He sighed. Life was complicated.

. . .

About a month later, Candice, a frizzy haired waitress who would rather be on her cell than at work, found herself bored out of her mind. She chomped on her gum as she ran around tables, serving loads of people. But she found that her luck was changing when a boy walked in.

He was easily her age and extremely hot. He had perfectly toned muscles easily visible through his ripped up jacked. He wore a tight Superboy shirt (as a huge fan, she immediately noticed that it was a Superboy shirt, not a Superman shirt due to it's slightly different coloring, as any true fan would) and his jeans were ripped. He wore black boots. His black was spiked and his perfectly radiant skin surrounded black sunglasses that she couldn't see his eyes through. He found a table (thankfully) in her area.

Obviously, she wasted no time in going over to serve him.

"What would you like?" She asked, batting her perfectly long and curled eyelashes.

He smiled politely. "A hot chocolate, please."

"Yes, sir." She smiled. "Anything else I could get you? A sub, cake, a date?"

He smiled. "No thanks, but you are beautiful. No mistake there."

She pouted, but nodded. And off she went.

But she watched anyway. He seemed particularly interested in an article about a rich kid who went off to Russia for special studies. Of course, he quickly moved on to an article about how Robin was mysteriously appearing all over the country without Batman to stop random crimes.

Candice filled a cup. He was still high on her to-do list. He was getting his hot chocolate soon.

Right then, she looked up at the sound of police sirens. She wished that Robin would stop here in Jump some time. Crime rates were only getting higher.

She walked back to the booth to find the boy with the sunglasses gone. She blinked, then realized that there was writing on a napkin. Right next to that were ten dollars. She picked them up.

Had to do something. Thanks for the hot chocolate, anyway. Keep the change. After that, there was a smily face. Candice blinked.

How did he write this and disappear all while she was getting his drink? Besides, there was a bell at the door! The poor teen blinked in confusion before sorting the money and going back to her job.

However, outside, a large, burly man in black started to sweat. On edge and in an alley, he found himself worked up. He almost let out a sigh of relief when a shadow crossed overhead. He whirled around, crowbar in hand. He found his grip also tightened on the sack he held in one hand.

There was no one there.

Suddenly, out of the darkness, some-some thing hit him right on the hand, forcing him to send his crowbar too far away for comfort and make a very manly noise that he would never admit he made later.

He spun back around. "I don't want trouble, okay?" He called fearfully.

Dropping down behind him, Robin couldn't help but think This guy would never make it in Gotham.

The guy turned around slowly to have his eyes widen as a bunch of bats flew out of the shadows. Behind them, he could have sworn that he saw two white eyes, but he found himself staggering back, unsure.

"You should have thought of that before you committed the crime." Robin stated, coming out into the light to run at the criminal wearing the new costume that Alfred had made him in it's bright, flashy glory. It had a variety of colors, but it didn't matter. It was his new costume, and if Robin wanted, he could put it into camouflage mode.

He ran at the criminal, kicking him away and flipping back down to the ground with no problem. The criminal came back at him, swinging his huge fists and probably twice Robin's size, but Robin blocked him easily. Then he sent an uppercut and went to knee him. Then, effortlessly, Robin pushed off the wall and flew into the air.

The look on the guy's face was more than enough for Robin.

He grabbed his shoulders and threw the guy over him relying solely on momentum. Even after all that, Robin still had more than enough energy to throw him into the wall. The guy slid down it before looking up at Robin.

"Hey, this isn't your town! Aren't you supposed to be with-"

This guy must not read the news much. "Just moved here," He stated darkly, moving forward, "and from now on I work alone."

Right then, a loud noise made him look up to see a green comet enter the atmosphere and fly over the buildings where it landed with a lime explosion. His eyes widened before narrowing and landing on the criminal. He tied him up upside-down before running off to the scene of the explosion.

Instead, he found a red haired alien trying to break her cuffs on a pole that, if broken, would kill everyone on a balcony. He sent a birdarang to stop her, and stop her it did.

Well, this is whelming. He thought. And he had no idea how whelming it would get.

He would see, though, in the crazy city of Jump.

With the horrors of his past behind him, Robin found himself facing the future. And the future was bright.

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