Bruce tugged at the hem of the short-pants once more, the garment riding up uncomfortably against the top of his thighs. He was aware that he filled it out more than was appropriate, and his bare legs beneath the tight shorts were muscular and hairy enough to be almost obscene. More than one mother had looked upon him in clear disapproval tonight.
His fidgeting prompted a stifled bout of laughter from Dick, and Bruce cut his eyes aside in a scowl. “None of that,” Dick said, tossing the red hair of his wig over his shoulder. “Robin likes to smile and provide the occasional quip! The version you’re dressed as does, anyway. Maybe not Robin five-point-oh so much.”
"Not much at all," Bruce agreed, watching Damian ring the doorbell of the nearby house in his miniature Batman costume. An elderly woman and her middle-aged daughter came to the door, cooing over him until Damian began his gravel-voiced warning about the Joker poisoning the candy supply and the necessity of collecting a sample from each home to test for toxins.
"He means ‘Trick-or-Treat,’" Dick called from the sidewalk where he waited with Bruce.
"Oh, of course, Batman!" the elder of the two women said with a wink at Dick and Bruce, dumping a handful of miniature chocolate bars into Damian’s plastic pumpkin. "Thank goodness we have you out here keeping Gotham safe! And you brought Robin and Batgirl with you. What a team!"
Dick fluttered his eyelashes and propped a hand on his waist. “Happy to help, ma’am!” he chimed in a high falsetto.
"Thank you for your assistance, citizens," Damian said, and he swept down the sidewalk between Bruce and Dick, flourishing his cape behind him. "Robin! Batgirl! Follow!"
The cement was hard underfoot as Bruce padded along in the thin pixie boots. “I don’t see why the costume shop didn’t have any other adult versions of Robin.”
"Don’t think many adults go for it. Pretty sure the costume you got is intended for a male stripper. Don’t complain," he added when Bruce made a face. "Look how much fun Damian is having. Isn’t it worth it to watch your little Batman in action?"
Damian had cornered two brothers dressed as Superman and Green Lantern, and he was assigning them duties in the hunt for poisoned candy. The other children nodded along with rapt attention, evidently thinking it all a fun game and eager to stay in character. They had no idea Damian was entirely serious, that he was Robin dressed in a cheap Batman costume like countless other Gotham children that evening to prevent any of the Joker’s henchmen from identifying the real Batman and Robin.
"He’s going to be mad when he realizes this was all a ploy to get him to go trick-or-treating," Bruce pointed out.
"He’ll get over it when he spreads out all his candy over his bedroom floor. Got any leads, Boss?" Dick said, leaning down with hands braced on his knees as Damian ran back to them.
Damian gestured with the hand that clutched his candy collection, the plastic pumpkin swinging under his gauntlet as he pointed into the distance. “That Superman said there’s a witch distributing candy at the end of the lane, and that her yard has tombstones and a boiling cauldron. We should investigate.”
"Good work, Batman," Bruce intoned in his deep voice, and Damian looked up at him, his little face beaming with such pleasure beneath the foam cowl that Bruce touched a hand to his cheek without thinking. His skin was flushed from dashing about the neighborhood, pink and glowing beneath the green vinyl of Bruce’s glove. The boy’s eyes widened slightly as his father’s fingers stroked a line over his jaw, and Bruce was aware of Dick being very still at his side.
"That’s enough, Robin," Damian said at length, and Bruce dropped his hand as Dick sputtered with another round of choked laughter. Damian beckoned with a wave of his hand, turning to sprint down the lane, and Robin and Batgirl chased after Batman’s black polyester cape as it sailed above the sidewalk in front of them.
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