Boxers or Briefs?
by Syl Francis
A Titan walked into a superhero merchandise shop. When he entered, the shop owner immediately recognized him as Tempest, formerly Aqualad.
"Wow! Tempest! What may I do for you, sir?"
"I'm here to buy Aquaman boxer shorts. I hear that you carry them."
"We sure do, sir," the shop owner replied with pride. "How many would like?"
"Seven," the violet-eyed Titan answered, smiling pleasantly.
"Seven? Why so many?" The shop owner was clearly bewildered by this.
Tempest shrugged. "You know, one for each day of the week: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday...!" The shop owner smiled and quickly filled out his order.
The next day, the owner was surprised when another well-known Titan walked in--Nightwing! The dark-clad Titans' leader looked around suspiciously, ran a quick security check with one of his electronic Bat-toys, talked into a hidden mike for confirmation, then walked up to the front counter.
"Wh-what may I do for y-you, Ni-Nightwing--?" Before he could finish, the Titans leader had grabbed him by the lapel and pulled him halfway over the counter.
"How do you know who I am?" he growled.
"Y-you're k-kidding, right?" the shop owner squeaked. "Y-you're the Batman's kid!"
"You know about Batman?" Nightwing asked incredulously. The shop owner nodded nervously.
"Yes," he eeped, holding up a package of men's boxers with Batman's distinctive yellow oval. Nightwing slowly released him.
"I told the big-guy that this 'Urban Legend' stuff was a load of--" He glared at the shop owner. "Never mind. How much for a pair?" he asked. The shop owner told him. Nightwing convinced him that the price was 20% less--and threatened to close him down if he insisted on overcharging his customers. The shop owner nodded vigorously.
"How many?" he asked, stumbling over his words.
"Seven?" The shop owner paused, eyes wide. Then understanding dawning on him, he nodded knowingly, "Oh, I know--one for each day of the week: Monday, Tuesday--"
Nightwing grabbed the owner by the collar again and pulled him until they were nose to nose. "Who told you? Blockbuster? If so--"
"P-Please, just t-take them!" the shop owner stuttered. He thrust the plastic bag with the boxers into Nightwing's hands. Nightwing glared at the smaller man suspiciously, and then tossed him the required amount of money--minus the 20% over-charge.
"I don't do bribes...and you can tell that to your boss!" The next instant the lights went out, and then came back on. The mysterious superhero was gone. The shop owner collapsed in his chair. He fervently hoped that that was the last he'd see of Nightwing.
Of course the next day, the Flash zoomed in and out in a nanosecond, taking seven Flash boxers with him. But the most memorable day was when another crimson-clad hero stepped in.
Grinning from ear-to-ear, the crimson archer stepped up to the front counter and banged his open palm on it, startling several browsers, frightening a couple of children and offending their mothers when he openly leered at them.
"Never fear, Arsenal's here! If you have any governments or crime cartels that need toppling, just dial 55TITAN--and ask for yours truly! Hey! How about some service here?!" He glared at the shop owner who was currently helping an elderly lady.
The woman harrumphed, gave Arsenal her harshest glare, paid her money and turned to go.
"In my days, a hero waited his turn!" she declared imperiously.
"And a top o' the morning to you, ma'am!" Arsenal returned with his most charming smile. Blushing like a schoolgirl, the elderly woman returned his smile and walked out, with a light step.
"How may I help you, Speedy, uh, I mean, uh, Arsenal?" The already nervous owner began perspiring profusely as soon as he uttered the name, 'Speedy,' because his latest hero-customer grabbed the nearest handy paper clip, and threw it against the wall behind him, where it buried itself up to the hilt.
"Don't ever call me that!" Arsenal growled.
Closing his eyes in mortal fear, hoping that he wouldn't have a repeat of the Nightwing incident, the owner whimpered, "How may I help you, sir?"
"I heard you carried Superhero boxers," Arsenal said amiably. "Yes, ladies!" he called, addressing the store in general. "It's definitely boxers and not briefs!" He was rewarded by several twitters and chuckles.
"Yes, we do," the owner answered, hoping to get his latest hero customer out quickly. "What are you looking for?"
"Spiderman!" Arsenal said sarcastically. "Green Arrow, for crying out loud--what kind of an idiotic question is that?"
"Y-yes, sir," the storeowner said hurriedly. "Do you want seven, sir?" he added helpfully.
"Seven?" Arsenal asked shocked. "What would I want seven for?"
"Well, for each day of the--!"
"I want twelve!" Arsenal declared. The storeowner stopped what he was doing and even forgot to be frightened.
"Twelve?" he asked stunned. "What do you need twelve boxers for?"
"Because, I happen to believe in personal hygiene, my obviously clueless little man!"
"I don't understand," the shop owner said still confused. "Why do you need twelve boxers for hygiene?"
"Because I've gotta change some time don't I? So I need one for January, one for February, one for March...!"
Syl Francis --who totally ignores current canon in her Batman/Nightwing fanfiction -- teaches by day, feeds her cats by night, and on occasion enters into an intelligent conversation with her husband.
All characters are DC Comics
This piece is © 2002 by Syl Francis
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DC characters are used here in fan art and fiction in accordance with their generous "fair use" policies.
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