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one day you'll come down // Dick Grayson
24 August 2009 @ 07:23 am
The Nexus is, as ever, a refreshing change from Gotham or New York, but Dick finds that many of the available activities are strangely similar. Getting coffee, for instance. He should probably be sleeping, but patrol was quiet tonight, leaving him pointlessly energetic and wakeful. Though he changed to civilian clothing (as is generally his custom for the Nexus), it's amusing to remember he could have stayed Nightwing and not looked at all out of the ordinary. His preference for now, however, is to be Dick Grayson, occasional acrobat, former cop, all around normal person who is getting a slightly expensive coffee that he doesn't need and shouldn't want.
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one day you'll come down // Dick Grayson
14 May 2009 @ 06:17 pm
Character: Richard John Grayson, AKA Dick (yes, really), AKA Nightwing
Timeline: pre-Batman RIP
Personality: For Dick, the duality of Nightwing versus himself is not nearly as strict as for Batman. Elements of his personality are present in both identities, such as his charismatic nature and sense of humor. Nightwing is at least nominally more serious, especially when leading a team or otherwise investigating or working, something partially borne out of the desire to reflect well on his mentor. But otherwise, Dick Grayson is for all intents and purposes the same as Nightwing. He is empathic and people-focused, and tends to be very physical and physically aware about his interactions; he is somewhat emotionally dependent on the people he thinks of as friends and family, but has never been, due to a difficult adolescence with Batman, obviously needy or clingy. Those characteristics manifest in different ways. For instance, when Dick was going to get married, he visited an old girlfriend to tell her but after a misunderstanding, ended up sleeping with her. He is incapable of letting go of the people he loves.

Dick thinks with his body. His physicality can be as theatrical as walking on his hands to as subtle as being in your personal space. When permissible, he tends to touch people in the appropriate manner. Though sometimes a stern leader, he is at heart a people person, what one writer (Phil Jimenez) referred to as "the soul, the linchpin of the DCU", because "he's well respected by everyone, known to the JLA, the Titans, the Outsiders, Birds of Prey — everyone looks to him for advice, for friendship, for his skills. He's the natural leader of the DCU."
Batman: [after the Obsidian Age] I'm going to give you a bit of advice. You're ready to graduate. Leading the JLA proves it. You can handle bigger and better than you are now.
Nightwing: Thanks. I had a good teacher, except for the interpersonal skills and the ability to work with others. That was me.
As an ex-sidekick, he is still immensely devoted to Batman, the second and biggest influence of his life. What he learned at Batman's side was that he could make a difference in people's lives, and that reason is why he continues to be Nightwing today. Even in cities like Blüdhaven, which was hopelessly crime-infested, even more so than Gotham, he stayed and fought to make a difference when he himself expected that he wouldn't. Similarly, he is devoted to the rest of his family, Alfred, Oracle, and Tim, who functions as his little brother. Even Jason, with whom he now has a wary, standoffish relationship, has indicated he's willing to consider Dick as family, he used to be somewhat friendly with -- he brought Jason to meet the Titans and treated him well, considering Jason was Dick's "replacement".
Background: Born the first day of spring (hence "Robin" as a nickname and being used later on) to John and Mary Grayson, Richard John Grayson grew up in Haley's circus. His parents were trapeze artists known as the Flying Graysons, and he joined their act at an early age. After mobsters attempt to solicit protection money but are refused by the owner of the circus, they sabotage the wires and Dick's parents fall to their death. Batman was there at the circus that same night, investigated their deaths, and eventually took him in. Dick became Bruce Wayne's ward, and Robin to his Batman. This dynamic worked until Dick was seventeen, at which point a combination of his outside obligations to the Titans, emotional issues on Batman's part, and just the general growing up process led to Dick being fired. It was after this that he consulted Superman on what to do, and heard the story of a Kryptonian vigilante called Nightwing. Dick took that name and made it his own.

He stayed estranged from Bruce, especially as Bruce took on Jason Todd as the second Robin. After Jason's death, however, a young Tim Drake sought him out to ask that he return to being Robin so that Batman would stop acting self-destructively. Unable to reconcile with Batman, Dick refused. He did support Tim's cause to be Robin and helped train him.

When Batman broke his back during a fight with Bane, he chose Azrael to inherit the mantle instead of Dick, which hurt him. The reasoning given was that "Dick was now his own man and would not willingly take the responsibility", but in reality, Bruce didn't want Dick to face Bane. He did become Batman for a period as Bruce healed, and that among other things cemented his sibling relationship with Tim.

More significant storylines in Dick's life include "Cataclysm" -- Gotham was overtaken by a magnitude 7.6 earthquake. This led direction into "No Man's Land", wherein the government officially evacuated Gotham and then abandoned and isolated those who chose to remain -- gangs took over the crippled city, superheroes were legally forbidden from entering. After the city was rebuilt, the "Bruce Wayne: Murderer?" storyline saw Batman framed for the murder of his then girlfriend. This is especially notable for his emotional breakdown during which he escaped and decided to be Batman full time rather than live a double life; he also decided to dismiss his partners and family, but Dick asked him that if there was only Batman left, what happened to the man that raised him? Batman had no answer. Dick was also the only one who unquestioningly believed in Batman's innocence.

Obsidian Age and Infinite Crisis. (We'll be done soon, I swear.) When the Justice League disappears on a mission to do something supercomplicated and not related, Batman activates a contingency plan, in which a handful of heroes would be assembled to create a new JLA. Nightwing was chosen to be the leader until everybody came back. INFINITE CRISIS was just as infinitely painful as it sounded, and during the Battle of Metropolis, Dick was nearly killed. But did not die, due to editorial edict.

One Year Later (I'm serious, we're almost done). Dick returns from a training trip with Bruce and Tim retracing his steps to becoming Batman to New York only to find that Jason is sitting in his chair, sleeping in his bed, and eating his porridge. Or rather, that Jason is alive and masquerading as a more murderous Nightwing.

Abilities/Additional Notes: Dick is an excellent natural athlete at the peak of his strength, endurance, and agility. He is generally considered the greatest human acrobat of the DC universe. He is a master of a half dozen martial arts (including capoeira), and was trained in everything from escapology to criminology, fencing, stealth, disguise, and numerous other combat/non-combat disciplines.

If allowed to be brought in while wearing his costume, which has compartments for storage, his inventory may consist of the following: grappling gun, smoke pellets, modified batarangs (like differently-shaped shuriken), knockout gas capsules, a rebreather for protection against any airborne non-contact toxins, lock picks, flexi-cuffs, and a small halogen flashlight. The right gauntlet is also equipped with a 100,000-volt stun gun. He carries two spring-loaded escrima sticks on his back. Basically, Batkids? Are the freaking Boy Scouts of the DC Universe.

Sample Journal Post: Assuming there are people on the other end of this: I just startled a herd of pastel-colored cows. Possibility of hallucinations aside, my "alternate universe" sense is tingling. And god, I wish I didn't even have one of those.
Sample RP: Town life really didn't suit a Bat. No lines of rooftops, no city silhouette against the brilliant, smog-filtered sun. Not enough shadows, too much darkness. But they could adjust. Couldn't they? ... Even if all the universes that existed had compressed into one but it only felt like they were trapped just out of reach of home?

Dick suppressed a sigh and took off his gauntlets, flexing his hand in the night breeze. He cracked a knuckle or two before dutifulness compelled him to put them back on, even though there was nothing to fight here. The uniform was all he had left -- the uniform and his little brother. And... Jason, admittedly. It could be worse (where was Bruce?). Lots worse (what now?). In fact, he'd been in worse before, but he'd come out of it, whereas there was no ending in sight here.

But you could see the stars. Not familiar stars, but you could make yourself look at them blind to the lack of certain constellations. You could just stare without seeing, only resonant to ancient movements of forgotten suns, the cosmos crushed together, an eternity of space made into a crown of one world. You could see the stars. And people still needed them. Whether as Nightwing or as Dick, he would answer.
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one day you'll come down // Dick Grayson
07 May 2009 @ 12:00 am
layout: realsoon
PB: Matthew Goode

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