Ok this is a rather dark, moody piece but it is a personal piece. It relates to how I felt at certain periods of my life. Dick is kind of an avatar for me at this point.
My nose itches.
I'm really not sure where I am--things are still kind of fuzzy. I am sure of one fact--my nose itches. OK, think, Nightwing. Oh, crap, where is my mask? It's...GONE! I...I can't feel it. Someone knows who I am. If they know who I am, then they know everyone elses' secrets. I can hear my heart racing and I know I'm panting. I could just have condemned everyone I love to a painful death. At the moment, I'm glad that Babs dumped me. She's out of Gotham and she's safe. Oh, hell...Deborah! She...she doesn't even know anything about this, and now people will be trying to kill her to get to me.
She's already been threatened once. I should have known better than to fall in love. I should know it's a death sentence. I should just keep everyone safe and adopt a monastic lifestyle. OK, try to calm down now, 'Wing, and use your head. You're one step short of a panic attack. What I wouldn't give right now for Batman's ability to shut off all emotion and operate on cool logic. Cool logic tells me my ass is grass and he's the lawn mower.
My nose itches.
Ok, now...the last thing I fully remember was being on the cell phone trying to reach Tim, who was late. Tim�oh, no�Maybe they got him and that's how they got me. Here I was bitching and he might've needed me. Or...or, he shows up looking for me and they get him because I'm not there to help him. I swore to protect him so he wouldn't die like Jason. A lot of good I do at that, sitting in here. I've got to think of other's needs first. That's what I've been born and bred to do, first in the circus, then as a vigilante. I signed a contract as soon as I could write, that my needs would always be secondary. My worth is more in what I do for others. If I think of my needs, I'm selfish, arrogant, and a whiner.
Oh crap. I hear his laugh. I can't get that laugh out of my head--my memories, even when I try. Shit, I hear Harley's insane giggling and Croc roaring about something. Great,,, I'm in Arkham, the deluxe entr�e in the psycho feeding pen of the world. I've either helped bring in most of the residents, or am the son of the man who brought them in. With a clear head, I could make it out of here without a problem. I know where most of Joker's little escape hatches are hidden. But, right now, I can't get my body to cooperate. I�I can't even get my eyes to truly focus; everything seems to be hazy.
My nose itches.
That is not the worst part though. I�.I can't move my arms, and my legs take forever to cooperate. It's like the signals from my brain to the rest of my body are being rewired and rerouted. Okay, by really concentrating, I can feel fabric under my hands;, , and working up, I can feel it on top of my arms. Well, 'Wing, we're not totally paralyzed. Now I know what's happening. I'm in a straight jacket. In my regular mind this wouldn't bother me a bit. I could escape from it. Right now, though, I have a mind trapped in a body that is not totally cooperating. I can't get out myself. Time's passing, but the only thing to measure it by is the thunking and buzzing of the doors. I don't even have the freedom of coming and going like a person. I'm here until either the fog in my brain clears, or someone comes for me. I think I heard them order a guard to beat me; that would be fine. Each time the footsteps come, I wonder if it's the guard, and think about how I can try to defend myself in this condition. I'm feeling scared, but that's not allowed for me. I must show no emotion and no fear.
My nose itches.
I hate this. From the earliest I can remember, I've been an independent person. I've had a lot of latitude, even with Bruce and Alfred. I've prided myself in being self-sufficient and taking care of myself. I don't like asking for help. I love to give it, it's what I'm expected to do. It's what I'm best at. I'm good old dependable, reliable Dick. I like it that way. If I need help, I'm letting people down and being a burden to them. Being weak is for other people. I need to be strong and always in control. Yeah, part of me would like to have others take care of me, but that isn't an option. I found that out real quickly.
I am now powerless. I must sit and wait for others. I'm trying to be the strong one. I need to be; people are counting on me. It's just that, I do get scared sometimes. I do get lonely sometimes, too. Right now is one of those sometimes. I hear human beings at their worst--their most miserable points. I try to sleep but it's elusive. The shrieks and cries wake me up and I begin to wonder if I'm really losing my sanity. Do they know where I am? Do they care where I am? I mean, I know they care, but I also know I don't always merit a high place on their priority meter. I'm cool with that. I've really got no other option.
My nose itches.
I'm one in a sea of many. I'm used to it. Gotham must always come first. I've got to just accept it. If I don't, I'm being whiny and a brat. I'm just one hero; I've got to wait my turn like everyone else. Oracle has a lot of responsibilities and concerns. I'm just one more headache, and Robin already has the Titans and Cassie, and other things on his plate. Maybe it will be better for Robin if I stay here. Maybe if I rot, he can cut some deal and get Conner back. I've heard them whisper at the Tower over why I lived and Conner died, and how cruel that was for Robin. It was, but I don't know what to do about it. I've been trying to make it up. But, it wasn't even my fault. I'm just one more burden for Alfred, who already has enough on his plate. So, I've got to be strong and take care of me. Others taking care of you is a delusion or a privilege I'm really not entitled to. Hey, if one only relies on themselves, well then you know what you'll get. There's a consistency to it all. There is a predictability and an order to it all.
It's just hard when you don't feel strong. It's hard when you'd love to have a shoulder to lean on, to cry on, but none is offered. I'm supposed to be strong and resilient, and I am, but I'm not a robot or a machine either. Right now, I don't even have the dignity of shoes. They took the boots and I'm barefoot like a child again. Suck it up Grayson. No one cares. You're just whining and bitching, so suck it up. I've got to figure out how to get out of this situation...now. I'll think about the rest at a better time. Although, if I'm lucky, another time won't come, and I know no one is going to ask how I'm feeling and really want to know the answer. The only one who will is Alfred, and he won't press the issue. He'll also have Bruce or Tim or Stephanie or Cass that need him more. They'll mostly be quite happy and content with a "fine," because then I'll be free to hear their troubles and bear their burdens.
Right now, though, my nose itches. Right now, even diamonds can crack.
If you like this story, please go down and click on my little grey egg. If it doesnt hatch soon it wont. Le Sniff. Still looking for names too.