If the Gotham vigilantes had an in-universe online fandom, the Robins would totally interact with it. Between curiosity and inborn trolling tendencies, they wouldn’t be able to help themselves. Officially, Dick is the first one to find it. It was four in the morning, he’d finished watching all of the Animal Planet shows that he’d had recorded, and he couldn’t sleep—-so he googled Nightwing, just to see what would crop up. And he found art!! And stories!! And there was one about Batman and Nightwing having an adventure and DICK LIKES ADVENTURES so he clicked on it. It started out okay, because Batman was only saying “hn” and well, okay, that sounds like him, but then THINGS started happening. Fic!Batman started talking about Nightwing’s supple buttocks, and Dick started squinting at the screen. Then, Fic!Batman told Nightwing “Take off ur suit boy and back it up” and Dick shriek/bellowed and slammed his laptop shut. He knew that simply deleting his internet history wouldn’t be enough—-and he had this irrational surety that somehow, Bruce already knew what he had read and was disappointed in him—-so Dick did the only thing he could do, given the situation: he threw the laptop out the window. When it didn’t look nearly destroyed enough, he shimmied down the fire escape, swept up the laptop bits, and set fire to them in the kitchen sink. Damian found him crying over the smoldering remains—-this was when Bruce was gone, so after his initial horror had ebbed, Dick realized for the billionth time how much he missed Brooo-ooo-oooooose—-and to his credit, he was almost polite when he told him to get the hell out of his way so that he could get a fork for his breakfast.
But Dick throwing things out the window is semi-normal behavior, so Damian just kind of grunted at him when he told him he kind of maybe had an accident with the Batlaptop and run along, Damian, there is nothing to see here except the destruction of what little innocence he had left in his soul.
So Dick HAD to talk about this with someone, and that someone couldn’t be Damian or Alfred, so he broke into Tim’s room and shook him awake because Tim do you know that people write stories about us on the internet and most of them have to do with Batman crying and touching himself or others inappropriately??? AND I MEAN NOT ME BATMAN I MEAN BRUCE BATMAN.
And Tim, naturally, lied through his goddamn teeth. He just widened his eyes innocently and went uuuuuuhhhHHHH no, no, I’ve never heard about that please tell me more about this online phenomenon that I have never heard of even once in my life. And Dick paced and described it in great detail, Kermit-flailing his arms for emphasis.
But Tim knew about it. Tim had been a part of Bat fandom before he’d been a Robin himself—-when it’d been nothing but Angelfire Web Rings and Fan Listings dedicated to the urban legend of The Batman. It’d started as Tim trying to network with others online in an effort to get a better idea of the patrolling patterns that Batman followed immediately after Jason’s death, but that was just his gateway into the fandom. He started with hard facts, then started haunting the message boards, then started writing up meta posts, then…well. Writing self-indulgent fic about how much all the Robins love and respect the third Robin (and totally hug him all the time and always remember his birthday and his various food allergies and never try to kill him ever). After he got Dick to calm down some, Tim introduced him to the gen fic and the less startling parts of fandom. They never discussed it again, but Tim started noticing the online presence of BLUBIRD69, who writes wonderfully sweet reviews. They’re entirely in capslock, and the only punctuation that is used is an excess of exclamation points. (Example: THIS IS A REALLLY NICE STORY ABOUT BATMAN HUGGING ALL OF THE ROBINS AND I REALLY LIKED IT (YOU DID A GREAT JOB!!!!)! YOU SHOULD WRITE MORE STORIES LIKE THIS ONE! MAYBE YOU COULD WRITE ABOUT THEM HAVING A MOVIE NIGHT!! THEY WOULD PROBABLY WATCH SOMETHING FUN LIKE THE INCREDIBLES AND DEFINITELY NOT ZORRO BECAUSE ZORRO IS KIND OF DEPRESSING YOU KNOW!!)
Steph spends most of her time online reblogging the pictures of Bat and Robin butts that civilians take on their camera phones. She compares them, contrasts them, and ranks them in order by shapeliness and firmness. It was a good day in the life of Stephanie Brown when she finally got the opportunity to validate her headcanon through “friendly team butt-pats”. (Dick got behind this idea, and made it a part of their nightly ramp-up to patrol. Dick Grayson will pat all the butts in a friendly and supportive manner. Damian tries to break his wrist every time.)
The day that Tim and Steph realized that they were bobbobrobin and purple_gurl92 respectively was a very awkward one. They just kind of eyed each other when they happened to pass on patrol, and Steph—-since Steph and tact don’t always get along—-just blurted out “I know about your fanfiction, Timothy. I READ AND REVIEWED.”
and Tim chose that moment to disappear, because he didn’t know how to explain his 80k high school AU JayDick epic. His shame was too great.
Jason was late to the game. “Someone” emailed him the link to a certain AU JayDick epic with the subject line WE COULD HAVE HAD IT AAAAAALLLLLLLLLL.
Basically, Jason binged on fic (all pairings, but only ones that looked happy/included the second Robin being awesome and loved), had a good hard cry about how much fic!Bruce loved him, and then went and set fire to eight meth labs because he just didn’t know what to do with all his feels.