1964-11-23 - You Jump, I'll Jump.
Summary: After the Macy's Ball, Jess and Dick have a talk on the roof and make some decisions on the direction they're going.
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
Theme Song: None
jessica-drew nightwing 

As the party goes on and the hall fills with people, Jess's social butterfly act starts to wear a little bit thin. Thing enough that it even seems to be affecting people around her - some seem distinctly uncomfortable, giving the woman wide berth, until she finally seeks a few breaths of fresh air by heading up to the roof.

It's chilly outside, the winter air cold and the wind whipping through the buildings, but it's a relief to Jess. She's used to either avoiding crowds, or disappearing into them. Being a subject of attention in one? Unsettling after a bit. With her arms crossed over her chest, she stands perilously close to the edge of the roof, watching people stream in and out.

Following Jessica up to the roof, there is a bit of concern on Dick's face. He felt her reaction when she tensed under his touch, and perhaps he realized she wasn't ready for such an intimate touch to the small of her back as he moves to stand next to her. Tucking his hands into his pockets, he glances down to consider the street below. "I've had a good time time tonight." he offers quietly, glancing aside at her. "You alright?"

Jess looks over, a small smile flickering across her features, even as she keeps her arms crossed. "Yeah, sure," she answers quickly enough. "Sorry. I'm, ah. I'm not real used to being the center of attention in a crowd," she admits, tucking a piece of hair behind her ear. "Carol's a little more comfortable with that than I am. I'll be okay," she promises, taking a deep breath. "Just needed to get some fresh air for a minute."

"Well, the only reason I was getting any attention is because of the woman that accompanied me." Dick offers with a small smirk as he glances down at the stream of people coming and going. "Plus, it seems that Carol and Bruce have been at this for a while - I mean, as you said, we've only been dating for all of tonight." There's a glance aside at her. "So, what are you doing next Friday night?"

Jess quirks a brow, smile tugging at one corner of her lips. "Depends. I just started seeing someone, not sure if I've scared him off yet." Oddly enough, despite her actions, there's still something about her that's almost…off-putting. Like someone's ramped up the anxiety around her. Almost as if she's radiating it. It's waning with each breeze, but it's still there.

"There's this girl that I'm seeing, but she seems to think that I might be interested in only what she's doing later tonight, so I thought I'd see what she was doing next week. You know, step at a time." Dick offers a grin and then suddenly takes a seat, allowing his feet to hang over the edge of the building to glance up at her. "Want to talk about it? Because that's a total first date conversation - what happened with your ex?"

"Oof," Jess laughs, though she uncrosses her arms, pushing a hand through her hair. "Yeah, that's a big one. And a long one." As he sits down, she settles on to the edge of the roof next to him, though she keeps her feet on the roof side of the building, hands folded in her lap. "Well. Not really, I guess. When it comes down to it, same story it always is. I thought it was real, but it turned out he was just acting. Trying to keep me happy. Sounds stupid when you put it that way, right?"

"I could see someone trying to keep you happy. But you know, I did ask you first. Totally not an act. But I'm not going to push." Dick glances aside to her for a moment. "I haven't dated in a while. Met someone while I was in Italy, but it didn't really pan out when I came back home." he finally admits. "I think she wanted me to stay, but my heart is here."

"It was less the trying to keep me happy and more the…someone was paying him to keep me happy so I wouldn't look too closely at some things," Jess grimaces, letting her shoulder bump lightly against his. "Sorry about Italy, though. Hard when you have to leave people behind. She wasn't interested in coming to New York?"

"Thought she was, but she bailed." Feeling the bump, Dick glances aside at Jess and smirks. "You just described a gigolo." he points out as he considers and touches her elbow gently to try to get her to loosen up her arm somewhat. "Not sure if it would have worked anyway, she had some connections that could have proven to be rather unsavory." Italy, after all. Land of mobsters.

Jess's lips twitch again. "You know, thinking of it as a gigolo arrangement does make it feel a little bit better," she chuckles before watching his features a little more carefully. "What, have you got a reputation to consider?" she teases, smile deepening just a bit. That sense of anxiety eases slightly, as the tension bleeds from her shoulders.

"Oh, well, you know, Bruce is the womanizer, someone has to play the straight arrow." Dick responds with a smirk as he grins up at Jessica and then smirks. "You missed out on the chance to call her mom, you know." he points out before placing his hands flat on the concrete. "And no, Bruce isn't that bad. He just has issues with commitment."

"I did," Jess laughs, shaking her head. "I did. I mean, as much fun as it would have been, it would've seemed a little weird to you and Bruce, I'm guessing. Maybe just Bruce, you'd get the joke. I try not to embarrass myself more than once or twice in an evening on a date, though, and I didn't want to burn it too early," she chuckles.

"…to see that smile, Jessica Drew, you would have never embarassed me." Dick replies and gives her a warm smile. Yes, that was laying it on a little thick, but at least there was more than a hint of honesty in his eyes before he shrugs. "What, a ward and his guardian dating best friends? Bound to happen sooner or later. Though all the cradle robbing jokes for Carol probably just got worse."

Jess pushes a hand through her hair again, settling her elbow on his shoulder and propping her head on her hand as she watches him. "Way worse. I have the worst sense of humor. I'm kind of the worst all around, honestly. You should be prepared for that." She glances down at his feet dangling over the edge, smile quirking. "I mean, you do look about ready to jump."

"Depends." Dick considers, and reaches up to touch her elbow for a moment. "There's two jumps I could make here. One's pretty obvious and has a rather obvious outcome." He gives a shrug, but not to chase away her elbow but to turn his attention back to the stream below thoughtfully. "The other jump is more dangerous, because it involves trusting someone and hoping for the best."

"Oh, maybe not so obvious," Jess laughs low, glancing over her shoulder at the street. "I'm pretty sure I could catch you." She lets her elbow fall, but compensates by sliding a little closer, leaning back at her perch to meet his eye. "One way or the other."

"You do seem to be stronger than you let on, Jess." Dick responds, and it's with that he pushes off the edge of the ledge, just to balance on his hands and shift his legs around to twist and land back on the 'proper' side of the roof with her. "You just have to be strong enough to realize that someone else wants to catch you as well." he comments, though she still has an inch or two on her in her heels.

Jess has a hand out faster than the eye can follow…until she realizes that he's not actually jumping. A hint of color rises in her cheeks, and she draws her hand back considerably more slowly, waiting until he's resting on the edge of the wall again. "I'm not really used to letting other people catch me," she admits, glancing down. "Kind of not always been much of a team player. Carol'll tell you. I'm hell to get along with."

"If I'm not catching you and you're not catching me, then I suppose we're jumping together." Dick may have noticed the movement, but doesn't say anything on it. Why? Because he just dared to lean up when she glanced down and kissed her cheek warmly before he steps back from her. "Bruce will tell you I'm a pain in the ass."

Jess stills for a heartbeat at the kiss, though that color lingers in her cheeks when he draws back. "I feel like that's not entirely true," she smiles ruefully, head tilting as she clasps her hands in her lap once more. "After all, you just said you were the straight arrow. Unless that's what he'd mean. You just go around ruining all his fun. But you don't really seem like the enemy of fun to me."

"Enemy of fun? Me? Not a chance. It's more that I'm the Jimminy Cricket to his Pinocchio." Dick smirks. "He does try hard to be a good role model sometimes." He reads the way she withdraws perhaps in the wrong way as he turns his attention back to the street. But there's no apology offered for it. So that's a good step, right?

"Ah, like that, is it? I can see that," Jess nods, considering. "He must have been fairly young himself when he took you in. It's a bitch to try to be a role model to someone just a few years younger than you are," she smirks, reaching out to gently straighten his collar.

"He did pretty good, I think." When she works on his color, he doesn't withdraw, but Dick's cheeks do color for a moment. He's not sure what to do with his hands, and they ended up folded behind his back. "At least you're not much younger than I am." he offers up. It's a trap!

"That's adorable," Jess smirks, chucking a finger under his chin when she's finished with his collar. "But I'll take it. Thanks. So, about that next Friday night thing," she says, shifting to face the same direction as he does and slipping her arm into his. "Did you have anything in particular in mind?"

Feeling the warmth of her arm, Dick moves to start walking with her. "I don't know. But it's hard to top this, and how to get you to look even better than you do tonight. How about dinner?" he asks her curiously. "And perhaps dancing afterwards - though that's probably a lame comparison to this date.

"Yeah, I'm not doing the big shopping thing again soon, so you're going to have to learn to appreciate non-dressy me," Jess laughs, pulling back enough to slow his steps before she turns to step in front of him, draping her arms around his neck. "We could dance here, you know. I'm pretty sure we can hear the music from downstairs if we listen." She can, at least, but that's another matter.

"Wow. Pretty good set of ears. They go nice with everything else that's pretty and good about you." Dick says, his hands moving to settle around Jess's waist. "You lead." he offers to her quietly, "Since it's your music we're going off of." In more ways than one.

Jess starts to sway, stepping from one side to the other in a slow circle. If he could hear the music downstairs, he might note that it is in time with it. But then, it's difficult to hear for the unenhanced. "I've got all sorts of talents, Dick." she smiles, rueful. "You'd be shocked. How about you? Aside from knowing art, and gymnastics, and acrobatics. Any hidden talents of your own?"

"You'd be surprised, but like all surprises, they're better learned in time, don't you agree?" Dick asks, and closes the distances so they're nearly pressed together as his hand moves from her side to reach to take one from his shoulder and join their hands together as he considers her. "Though you have surprised me quite often so far, Jess Drew."

"Good. I hate to be boring." Jess lets her fingers twine with his, starting to hum along with the tune from below - a Sinatra song to keep the rich donors happy. "You might decide to wander home with someone else." She laughs, grin flashing. "You got some looks down there."

"Didn't notice. Was ttoo busy looking at the most beautiful woman that was there on my arm." Dick responds and gives her hand a squeeze, "Would you wander away so easily if someone caught your eye?"

"Mmmm, not unless they were really interesting," Jess winks back at him, stepping out to spin in a circle before she comes back to his arms. "Or it was a saving the world sort of thing. I mean, you couldn't blame me if it was a saving the world sort of thing, right?"

"Oh, if you had to save the world, I suppose I can excuse you…" Dick twirls Jess and sidesteps when she comes back towards him, feathering her out before drawing her back in to press directly against her. "I mean, you'd have to do the same for me, right?" he says with a grin. "Or.. it also depends on how interesting the date we're on is."

"If you have to save the world, then I will absolutely forgive you for running out on the date," Jess nods firmly. "As long as you tell me. And then tell me about it afterwards. What about ice skating?" she suggests, humming the next few lines of the song below and swaying with him. "I've always wanted to do the central park ice skating thing."

"Since I picked this date.." Dick nods his head in agreement. "Ice skating and hot chocolate it is." he says with a grin, and listening to her hum. "..nice, you can carry a tune in a bucket." he teases softly, his free hand moving up and brushing that stray strand of hair that's been pestering Jessica all night back into place. "And gorgeous as well."

"I wouldn't say it's my strongest skill set," Jess laughs low, cheek tipping toward his hand with a slight flush. "But I can recognize when something's in tune, at least. Best bring a flask, though," she grins. "Hot chocolate is good and all, but cold weather activities can use a little more warming than that."

That brings a devil may care smile to Dick's face as he looks up at Jess and draws in his breath. "I was hopeful to use some points to find other activities to find warmth is each other." he responds cavalierishly as he starts to draw her down, unless she stops him.

Whatever response Jess might have made, she abandons in favor of leaning in, slender fingers cupping the line of his jaw as her lips brush soft and warm against his. Her hair falls over one shoulder, a soft scent of perfume wafting up from it.

The kiss is soft and held for a moment, before Dick pulls back. "So worth the points." he murmurs and releases her hand to pull her into a more intimate embrace, though they still sway in time with the music that's playing below, even if she's the only one that can hear it.

Jess's lips twitch at his comment, cheek curving against his as they sway. "One hundred percent honesty?" she murmurs, looking out over the lights of the city. "This is a little bit more my speed than fancy galas."

"I'll have to keep that in mind. I was doing better with the hot dogs and lemonades, huh?" Dick asks with a small chuckle. "I only do these things if I have to. But I'm glad to have you with me - and when I do this again, I could just ask you. Only if you promise to be painted into your dress again."

"You know, I was going to go with classic black, but Carol called dibs on it," Jess smirks, glancing down at her dress. "And careful how tight you hold. You might smudge the paint. Maybe next time I'll wear a short one. I hear those mini-skirts are starting to be all the rage. I can probably pull off mod. I'm English, you know," she adds absently, though she certainly doesn't sound it.

"Well, definetly wouldn't want to smudge it. And I didn't realize it was a faux pas for best friends to wear the same color dress. Women are complicated creatures." Dick grins up at one. "Good thing I plan to spend a long time trying to puzzle you out." There's a twirl as he spins her away to him and as he follows along with her words and the music she presented, realizing this was the end of the song, when he pulls her back in? It's a much more informal and warm kiss that meets her lips, a gentle lock of them together.

"Well, it's less of an issue for tuxes," Jess laughs, the sound fading to a softer hum when he pulls her in for another kiss. She steps in close, guiding his hand in hers to the small of her back as the other cups his jaw. "Mmm. Has anyone told you you're good at that?" she laughs low, eyes half-lidded.

His hand settling on the small of her back, Dick does what comes naturally and dips her over for a moment before pulling her back up. "…I'll provide you with a comment card you can fill out for a complimentary breakfast in the morning." he offers, a playful wink offered down to her.

Surprised laughter bubbles from Jessica's lips at that, her balance pinpoint accurate as he dips her. "Cheeky. I like it," she grins back up at him, giving his cheek a light pinch between two fingers with the words.

"Good, cause I like your company." Setting her back upright, Dick slips his arm around hers. "I suppose we should rejoin the human race for a bit, though I'm not quite ready to return you to the land of mere motrals yet." The pinch to his cheek reddens it and he laughs at the touch. "Cheeky, indeed."

Jess lets out a slow breath, but that air of anxiety and discomfort that hovered around her before seems to have fled after their time on the roof. "I think I'm recovered enough to be social again," she agrees, giving the doors back to the party a look like she's sizing up an opponent.

"Oh, I didn't mean the party. I was thinking we blow this joint, hit a local diner, have some greasy cheeseburgers and pie ala mode and see if that blows the seams of your dress." Dick says with a brightening smile before kissing her cheek. "You have more than filled your obligation of being proper arm candy for the night." he offers up with a mischevious smile.

"Oh, you are my hero," Jess sighs, leaning in for a kiss that definitely expresses her gratitude. "Sold. Let's go and be plebes." She actually gives the edge of the roof a curious, considering look for just a moment, as if she might jump rather than go back through the party, but she ends up taking a step toward the door instead.

"You know, if you jump, I'll just have to jump after you, Jess." Dick offers, before she steps away, and he offers her his hand so that they can make the trek down and go live it up at the first greasy spoon they come across.

"I mean, I was thinking more fire escape…" Jess lies, a mischievous smile flickering across her features as her hand tightens on his. "Don't worry, I won't jump. Tonight. Without good reason. Above and beyond the room full of socialites whose gauntlet we have to run to escape…" She teases, adding conditions as they continue down the stairs.

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