22) First Day of School

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Dick woke up with a start.

For once, it wasn't because of nightmares. No, this time it was because of the alarm clock abruptly blaring into his eardrums.

A normal third grader would have been annoyed and reluctant to get up from their comfy pillow and warm bed sheets. But it is already a known fact that that Richard Grayson was not normal.

So, sure, he woke up slightly disoriented. He blink groggily and ran a hand through his hair after he turned off the alarm. What.. Why is there an al-

School!

Dick forced his sore body off the bed and ran downstairs. He crept into the kitchen, where he heard the clanking sounds of plates. He rubbed the sleepiness out of his eyes and walked up to Alfred.

"Good morning." The boy greeted happily as he tapped his shoulder.

Alfred almost dropped the plate in his hands. "My word, Richard! You scared the butler out of me!"

Dick widened his eyes. "Oh, I'm sorry! I didn't mean to!"

Alfred let out a sigh and began chuckling slightly. "It's alright," he said as he placed the food on the table. He gestured for Dick to sit down and eat. Dick slipped into a seat and picked up the fork to his left. "It's been quite a while since I've woken up this early in the morning. That scare of yours is just what I needed to jump start my day."

Dick smiled shyly as he chewed on his food. He looked at the empty seat beside him. "Um, Alfred? Where's Bruce?"

He could've sworn he saw a flash of panic. "Ah.. Master Bruce had important business to attend to.."

Dick deflated. He didn't know why, but he had wanted Bruce to be the one to wish him goodbye before he set off into the foreign territory that was school.

"He said he'll try to come back as soon as he can manage to drop you off at school. I'm afraid that's not likely, though," Alfred continued.

Dick simply nodded and continue to glumly eat. Alfred sadly looked at the boy, he didn't know what to say. He pursed his lips and proceeded to do butler stuff.

Dick got up and placed his dish in the sink. To his frustration, Alfred insisted on washing it himself. AGAIN! "You go upstairs and change into your uniform. Bring your book bag with you while your at it. Don't forget to brush your teeth as well! We'll be leaving shortly afterwards."

"Okay." Dick replied. He secretly hoped Bruce would return before that. Until then, he did as Alfred instructed.

He wasn't a fan of the school uniform, it was uncomfortable and he knew he'd get hot in it. He had to wear a dark blue blazer over his white polo shirt, along with a necktie. He had the option to choose trousers or short trousers, so he chose shorts.

While brushing his teeth, a bit of toothpaste got on his blazer. Dick tried rubbing it off but it just made things worse.

Starting the day off just greeeaaaat.

Dick finally took his backpack and put it on. It was surprisingly heavy.

"I'm ready, Alfred." Dick called out as he walked downstairs. He turned his head both ways trying to look for him

Alfred clicked his tongue and sharply said, "Not like that you aren't." He hastily turned Dick around, catching the eight year old off guard, and began to comb his wild hair. "We can't have you going to your first day of school like you had just come out of a tornado, now can we?"

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