(DCU) I Scream, You Scream
Timeline: Early Young Justice
Notes: For a prompt at dcu_memes.
Summary: Tim doesn't want to share his ice cream. Kon has other ideas.
It’s hot. Stupidly hot. The kind of hot that makes Tim resent Kevlar and clingy spandex with a hatred he didn’t think himself capable of.
There’s a part of him that knows he should be coping better with the heat. He’s survived Gotham in August for years now, has patrolled Gotham in August. He should be able to shrug the high temperatures off, should be able to work through the discomfort.
Except right now he’s slumped on the couch in the Mount Justice rec room, legs stretched out before him, hair damp and sticking to his forehead. He’s seriously considering shucking his boots - he’s already dumped his gauntlets and cape on the cushion beside him.
Bruce would probably be angry about that, but the only thing Tim’s handling right now is a waffle cone and he’s not exactly planning on there being anything left that could be dusted for prints when he’s done with it.
The air-conditioning is feeble, at best. The headquarters is large and the AC units are old, so it makes sense that they’re struggling to keep the summer heat at bay. Tim frowns over his ice cream; he’d bet good money that Bruce made sure the damn things were working perfectly when the Justice League was still using the mountain as the base of their operations.
Or maybe Superman discreetly used his arctic breath to bring the temperature down.
Either way, Red Tornado has given his word he’ll see if something can be done about updating the AC system, just as soon as he returns from his latest visit with Traya.
So Tim’s stuck sweltering in the Robin suit, with only ice cream for company.
And Kon, who lazily flies into the room as if it’s just another day, as if they’re not suffering through one of the worst heat waves in decades.
Which makes sense, because Kon likes to boast about how he spends most of his days hanging out on Hawaiian beaches. He’s probably used to this kind of heat. Hell, he probably thrives in it, soaking up the sun, letting it feed him the same way solar energy feeds Superman.
All in all, it makes Tim want to throw things at Kon’s head. Possibly his boots, if he could find the energy to pull them off.
“Aww, man, you got ice cream? Nobody told me about ice cream!” Kon cries, and swoops down in front of Tim. “Where’d you get it?”
Tim’s not about to admit that he bribed Bart to go out and buy it for him, so he settles for keeping his face perfectly blank and staring at Kon levelly through the whited-out lenses of his mask.
He knows Kon hates that, so he’s basically just being petty for the sake of being petty. But it’s so damn hot and Cassie and Cissie and Bart are in the pool and Tim can’t even join them, because Robins don’t go swimming in public for some reason that’s escaping Tim’s heat-addled brain right now.
“C’mon, Robbie, don’t hold out on me,” Kon says, just the slightest hint of a whine to his voice that makes Tim feel a little better about how Kon doesn’t look the tiniest bit effected by the weather, whereas Tim’s flushed and sweating.
Kon’s eyes are wide and earnest and kind of impossibly charming, and there’s a part of Tim that actually wants to give in. Wants to buy Kon ice cream, and maybe pet his hair a little, and generally take care of him.
Tim tries to keep that part of himself buried really, really deep.
So instead he raises his waffle cone to his mouth and, without changing the blank non-expression on his face, takes a really long, slow lick of ice cream.
Pettiness, thy name is Tim Drake.
Kon’s eyes get even wider.
Of course, Tim knows he’s being a big, fat jerk. And that Kon will call him out on it, because Kon calls him out on everything, even when Tim’s done nothing wrong. But Tim figures there must be one day in the year, or maybe just an hour, or maybe five minutes, where Robin is allowed to be something less than perfect.
He watches something flicker in Kon’s eyes before they narrow, and maybe this wasn’t such a good idea, because Tim really isn’t in the mood for an argument right now.
But instead of getting pissed and yelling, Kon is suddenly rushing forward and Tim has a moment to think ‘that was so not worth getting super-punched in the face for’ and also ‘oh crap don’t spill my ice cream’.
Kon’s hand is wrapped around Tim’s wrist just that quickly. Tim jerks against the hold but that’s not just Kon’s strength holding his arm frozen in mid air, that’s Kon’s TTK, and Tim’s muscles tense uselessly against the invisible grip that runs from his fingers to his shoulder. Kon’s knee presses into the couch cushions beside Tim’s thigh and he’s kind of looming over Tim, pushing into his personal space.
Except that isn’t right, because Tim hangs out with Batman, he knows what looming looks like. Kon’s staring down at him, gaze boring into Tim’s own, but there’s this weird, skittish energy in the air and Kon’s eyes are borderline manic.
“You - You are such a -” Kon hisses and this should be the part where he yells, except his voice is thin and choked.
He yanks Tim’s wrist and Tim feels the fabric of the couch try to cling to his damp shoulders as he’s pulled forward so the ice cream is closer to Kon’s face. Positions reversed this time so it’s Kon who’s staring Tim down as he opens his mouth, pink tongue visible behind white teeth, but this isn’t the same, not the same at all.
Before, Tim was just being malicious and childish.
Now, Kon is closing his eyes and maybe panting slightly, and there’s this flush to his face that makes the heat seem to press down around Tim, thick as molasses.
Tim knows he’s staring, but stopping is a physical impossibility. And Kon’s eyes are closed, so it’s okay, Tim can stare all he wants.
Stare at Kon’s tongue, dragging painfully slowly over the ice cream, lips closing gently around the tip of the swirl. Making this soft, appreciative noise before licking his lips, lapping up the small smear of sticky white across his bottom lip, and Tim’s sweating even more than before and it’s entirely possible he’s not even breathing any more.
And then he’s definitely not breathing, because Kon’s dragging his hand that little bit higher so he can trace the droplets that are starting to roll down the waffle cone. And that’s Kon’s tongue on Tim’s fingers, his bare fingers, because Tim’s gauntlets are still beside him on the couch. So there’s nothing to buffer the heat of Kon’s mouth, the slick slide of his tongue, the way his breath beats hot and fast across Tim’s hand.
Tim’s pretty sure the waffle cone would be crumbling to dust in his grip if Kon’s TTK weren’t holding his fist locked in its current position.
Kon’s eyes open again, slowly, eyelashes fluttering dreamily, and it’s the heat in them that finally steals a gasp from Tim. Kon’s eyes are dark, heavy, insistent in a way that makes Tim feel like he’s drowning. Staring down at him, dazed yet sincere, open, hopeful.
There’s a question there, a lot of questions, all shining in Kon’s eyes, so bright it almost hurts to look. And Tim wants to answer, he really does. Problem is, he’s pretty sure he can’t actually speak right now, voice a useless, shrivelled thing in his throat, so all he can do is stare back, frozen in place, knowing that the lenses mean Kon can’t actually see his eyes, knowing just how unfair that is.
Slowly, achingly slowly, Kon pulls back. Hand still wrapped around Tim’s wrist but not pressing into his personal space anymore, not stealing Tim’s breath just with the proximity of his presence. Eyes still intense, like they’re drilling into Tim’s soul, but there’s a clench to his jaw now. Like he’s angry at Tim not just for the ice cream, but for Tim not getting it.
Tim gets it, or at least he’s starting to. He just doesn’t know how to say that.
He watches Kon open his mouth, scowl a little, lick his lips restlessly. “Next time,” Kon murmurs, and his voice is lower, rougher than Tim’s ever heard it. “Next time you go out for ice cream, you take me with you, okay.” It’s not a question, so much as it is an order, and Kon looks frustrated with himself, like it wasn’t what he meant to say, or it didn’t come out right.
And then his fingers are sliding away from Tim’s wrist, TTK grip falling away, and Kon’s speeding from the room without looking back.
Tim sits there in silence for a long moment, panting like he’s just taken on Killer Croc.
His wrist tingles where Kon was holding him, his fingers feel slick and wet from Kon’s tongue, and he’s sweating more than ever, face burning with a fierce blush.
All this time, he’s been so careful not to let himself see Kon as more than a team-mate, as more than a friend. Denying to himself that he could want more, that there could be more to want.
Forcing himself to be so wilfully blind to his own feelings that somewhere along the line, he became blind to Kon’s too.
At times like this, he feels like a really lousy excuse for a detective.
Especially when it takes him a full two minutes to realise he’s dropped the remains of his ice cream on to his lap.