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Ok, let's set the stage. It's a bad situation. Jason enters a warehouse mid-combat, summoned as reluctant (or so he says) backup for his, quote, family, unquote. It's some flashy fighting; literally, there's a light show worthy of fairy godmothers fighting over Aurora's dress. (Damn it, he thinks, it's magic. Magic fights suck). A batkid pops out of the smoke to drop a body into his arms. "Take him. He's heavy."

It's Dick, and Jason drops his disdain to check major body parts for blood.

"Naw, it's a spell." Steph. "The true-lovey, sleeping beauty kind."

Jason hopes his horrified look hides his relief.

"I tried," Steph says. "The kissy bit."

"You what?" Jason blurts.

"It's not that kind of true love," Tim says, making an appearance. "Someone's got to love him truly. We all tried."

Jason frowns between Dick and the kids. "No dice? Her, okay, I get, but what's your problem? You really that pissed about the Ousting?"

Tim's face scrunches up like a storm cloud. "Robin tried, too. We love him enough, but not -- selflessly."

"It's gotta be someone who loves him but doesn't need him," Steph says.

"We think that's it," Tim says, still a little prissy. Jason has that effect on him. "O is limited to Google translate until Z is -- shit!"

They cartwheel away in a haze of flashing multicolor sparkles. Jason shifts Dick to be propped more fully against him, backing into a protected corner. Dick breathes evenly against Jason's jacket. It feels safer to have Dick like this, held up by Jason's body.

Selflessly. What would it mean to not need Dick the way his siblings do? And beyond that to the next logical step, to be someone Dick needs. Dick needs someone right now, to shelter him, to keep his body warm and safe, to carry the worry for his younger siblings that Dick himself cannot. If Dick never wakes, Jason won't be destroyed. Dick is not a rudder in Jason's life.

What, Jason wonders, would it take to be a pillar in Dick's.

Out of view of magic spells and family gawkers, Jason leans down.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And, in the spirit of Tumblr-art posts...a bonus: