Title: Helena’s Gift

By: Erin Griffin


Rating: PG

Pairing: Helena/Dinah

Disclaimer: I do not own the WB, and no money is being made from writing this story. I just wanted to get it written out before the idea drove me nuts. I DID, though write the song in this story, and I would appreciate it if you didn’t steal it. (Or if you decide to steal it, at least give me some of your fortunes when the song is the most popular piece of trash in the word… Okay, to recap (sighs deeply) if I owned the WB, the show would still be on, and I wouldn’t care if it wasn’t doing well with the rating. I do not own them, but if someone were to offer me a chance to own Rachel Skarsten, who am I to resist and say no…?

Author’s Note: I think this story is an AU of the last episodes. Instead of Wade being killed when he was, he survives, and he was found barely alive. Plus, instead of the events from that episode happening in a winter month it happens about a month and a half before this story takes place which is on Helena’s birthday, which is (from the page on the WB) I think April or May 1st.

Lips. Tongues bodies together. "I love you, Helena."

I feel a hand on my shoulder. "Helena, wake up. It is nearing 7:00." I slowly open my eyes. I see Dinah looking as if she is about to shake my shoulder again. I push her hand away rather roughly, though I do not want to. "Happy birthday." She said softly as if she wasn't sure then was the time to say it. I mutter my thanks as I get up. She smiles a knowing smile before she starts to walk towards the door. I want to say something to her, but I couldn't get the words out on time. She leaves the room and I don't hear it as it softly clicks shut. I sigh heavily. She was the voice that whispered to me last night. That was the reason for my hesitation. This isn't the first time I had this dream. The dream of her walking with me to my apartment after a fight nearby to clean her wounds. The dream of hard gazes and soft touches before I invite her to my room. In the end it is always the same. I would resolve to tell her how I felt, to somehow show her if the words wouldn’t come, but something always stopped me. She wouldn't be in the clocktower when I strode by, or she'd be training in the training room. Or, like this morning, when I sleep over in the clocktower on a bed made on the floor of where Dinah sleeps, I would see her and she took my breath away. 'Happy Birthday.' she'd said. That alone brought me into reality. The thoughts of the days and the weeks that have gone by since I have known Dinah... the proof that if I told her it could ruin many things between us. If I told Dinah how I felt... Well, I am too old. I am 7 years older than she is. I’m 23... Well, 24 now. She's 16 and a half, almost 17 years old.

Besides, I am in love with Reece, right? I mean, I wouldn’t have kissed him like that if I didn’t. I mean, I had to have felt something… I mean, there were tongues everywhere, and - Oh hell, whom am I kidding? That is just the way I kiss. It could mean anything from “Hey there, I know you want me so here is a teaser’ to ‘I am in heat, and you are just there’ to even ‘You. Me. Bed. NOW!’. The kiss Dream Dinah and I shared was a ‘You. Me. Bed. Now. Love me forever’ type of kiss that I have NEVER given to anyone even if I wanted to. In my dream, Dream Dinah was the one who was making me kiss her like that even if I was fighting it, but I never fight it. I want to toss my blanket over my head and pretend it was any ordinary day, but I feel footsteps near the door as Dinah contemplated coming back in. I get up slowly as my mind stopped buzzing with the thoughts of the dream I had the night before. I had to get them out of my head before I saw her again that morning. Then, I open the door and walk to the kitchen area of the Clocktower. There, Alfred was cooking what looked like scrambled eggs that had meat in it. Dinah has decided she has become a vegan, so she has a plate with a couple of slices of toast and apple slices on it. Barbara and I have a bet going as to how long it will last. She says 6-20 days and I say not even a week. She's only been at it for about 3 days now.

"Good morning Miss Helena. I hope you slept well, today being your day of birth." Alfred said a little too cheerfully for my taste. I smiled politely to him, and then looked over his shoulder. "There is a glass of orange juice on the table, and your eggs will be ready shortly.”

"Thank you." I said lamely as I went to the table. I sat across from Dinah, but didn't meet her eyes at first.

"Sleep okay?" She asked me. I looked up at the sudden voice. I blinked several times before my mind registered the question. I nodded.

"Yeah. So, where's Barbara?"

"Miss Barbara, I believe went to go collect your present from Mr. Brixton's apartment." I said nothing, and Alfred seemed to notice my sudden silence. "Do not worry, Helena. Mr. Brixton is doing fine. You heard what the doctors said. He will be up and moving again in a couple of weeks. I assure he places no blame on you." All words I have heard before. Alfred continued to speak as Dinah nodded in agreement. "Though, I suppose that doesn't take much of the guilt away." he sighed as he placed the plate of eggs in front of me. I stared at it for a second and then I started to eat after a short gratitude to Alfred.

I was aware of her curious stare. She wanted to ask me if I was all right, but was afraid I’d get mad at her for asking. I wouldn’t be surprised if she was right. Alfred was correct though. Guilt still weighed heavily within me, and I try as I might I can’t seem to see past the events of that night and accept the fact that I couldn’t have known that Harleen Quinzell was actually Harley Quinn. I look up when I heard the sound of the elevator coming to a stop, and as the doors open. Barbara came in with a small box on her lap as she wheeled closer to us. “Here Helena, this is a gift I thought you might like. Wade uh-“ She shifted her head from side to side as if to look for a way to say the next sentence. “He helped me design it.” She finished. Design it? I had a feeling that Barbara would make something, but I didn’t take Wade for the Techno-geek type. I looked at Dinah who looked like she was TRYING to be surprised, but really wasn’t. She looked down at her last slice of toast and smiled. I watched her to see if she’d reveal anything with her eyes, but she never looked in my direction. “Go ahead, open it.” Barbara said as she handed me the box. Slowly I opened it to find a pen inside… or so I thought. “It is a laser that can melt as well as freeze things. Thought it might be helpful in your ass kicking expeditions.” I looked up at her and smiled, thinking of maybe a thousand things to do to cause mischief with the new device.

“Thank you, and tell Wade I said thank you.” I told her. Barbara gave me a look I knew so well. “Uh- OR… I could drop by his apartment and tell him myself.” I corrected quickly. She smiled as Dinah seemed suppress a giggle. I playfully glared at her and she ended up laughing anyway, and I felt my insides jumble around within.

I believe my gift is next, Miss Helena.” Alfred’s warm but sudden voice scared me. I jumped and turned to look at him. His eyebrows wiggled some and he smiled in his knowing ways. I shook my head. How he always did that would ALWAYS be a mystery to me. He handed me a smaller box, and I knew it was jewelry. I opened it to see a necklace with a cat’s face in emerald. I gasped. “This was given to your mother one Christmas by Master Bruce. We found it on our doorstep the morning Miss Selina left for Paris, France more than 24 years ago.” Alfred Pennyworth said in his usual soft voice. “I wanted to give it to you when you knew who your father was, but I wasn’t sure if you were ready. I know now that you are. Happy Birthday, Miss Helena.”

“Thank you Alfred. It is beautiful.” I said, putting it on almost immediately after Alfred had said it was once my mother’s.

“You are very welcome.” The butler and friend replied. I looked up at Dinah as she admired the necklace. She seemed to look down when she saw I was watching her. Barbara motioned for Dinah to hurry up with her food so they could get to school on time. Dinah picked up her backpack, which Alfred had set next to her, and she unzipped the smallest compartment, searching through it. Then she emerged with a cassette case.

“Here Helena. I got you something as well. I know it isn’t a techno-babbly explained or a soon to be family heirloom, but- Well, I wrote you a song.” She said, blushing. I looked at her surprised. Dinah? A songwriter? I slowly took it from her as the shock slowly faded away and I walked over to the radio Alfred cleaned to. I was about to press play when I heard Dinah stop me with her voice. “No, don’t play it now, I’d be mortified. Wait until I am out of the room or something.” I watched her closely, wondering why she wouldn’t want to be here when I heard the song. “Please?” She asked almost desperately. That made me slowly move my hand away from the radio and to my side. I never could resist that tone, but Dinah didn’t know that, as far as I’m concerned. Well, she might, but the look on her face make me think otherwise.

“Okay. I’ll wait. Thank you.” I said, still wondering what type of a song Dinah would/could write. Dinah smiled, clearly relieved.

“Um, you’re welcome. I have to get to school. Have a good day, Helena.” I nodded as she and Barbara disappeared. As curios as I was about what was on the tape, I didn’t really feel like sharing the first listen with Alfred at that point, so I waited until Alfred had gone for errands for the Wayne Manor and for the Clocktower. Then I pressed play and listened as there seemed to be a little bit of static.

“Hey Helena, happy birthday. I- uh… I wrote you a poem a long time ago when you were having a hard time with what happened with Guy, but I never had the courage to give it to you in fear of being seen as Dinah the Dreamer, or just Kid the rest our lives. But I kept it with me…” she sighed, “and one day Gabby found it and suggested I turn it into a song. I thought she was crazy, but then she kept bugging me about it and then told me of a friend of hers who knows how to play guitar… So, I gave it a shot. It took me forever to find the correct tune for the song, but finally I got it to work, and had Gabby sing it because I am not a singer… Hell, I am not even a song writer, so I give full permission to throw this out if it absolutely sucks.” She laughed nervously. “Anyway, the song is untitled because I couldn’t find one that seemed to fit, so you get to choose the title since it is your song. Gabby wants to call it ‘More Than You Know’ and John wants to call it ‘Masks’. I had once or twice thought of calling it ‘Helena’s Song’, but like I said the choice is yours. Um, nothing left to say but ‘Enjoy’.” There was silence, then I heard the beginning notes of a guitar. Then Gabby began to sing:

Pl-Please take off your mask

Suddenly, Gabby has burst into a fit of giggles. “Gabby!!” Dinah said in a voice filled with protest and anger. “What the Hell?!!”

“Sorry, I still can’t get over the Top Ramen line.” Top Ramen line? What HAS Dinah written? I asked myself.

“How many times do I have to tell you that I only put that in there because there was not another great rhyme for the word ‘common’? Besides, it is a truthful line.” Dinah said, sounding as if all of her defences were up. There was something about the tone o her voice that told me that she didn’t take jokes about her poetry and songs lightly. She seemed hurt, but also determined to get the song right.

“You think Helena will understand the meaning of your song with all of the metaphors you keep putting in?” Gabby asked.

“Well, if you’d sing the damn song and give her a chance to, maybe then we’ll find out. She’s a smart woman… I’m sure she’ll figure it out. It isn’t hard if John knows what it is trying to say.” Dinah snapped.

“I’m sorry.” Gabby said, calming down. Dinah said something that even my ears couldn’t catch (most likely an apology of her own), then Gabby counted off. The guitar music started again, and then Gabby began again:

Please take off your mask
Show me your beautiful eyes
Let me see your face, and maybe
You will realize

I am hiding too
(And) I am just as scared
Show me who you are, and maybe
I'll be more prepared.

I heard the tempo pick up a little bit of pace as Gabby continued.

Tell me the secret life you're hiding
Show me all the wars you're fighting
You don't have to hide what's in your heart.

What is holding back your thoughts now?
Tell me the who, what, when, where and how.
What you tell me won’t tear you apart.

We have
More than you know in common.
We both like to eat Shrimp Top Ramen.
We may not look alike
But we both have our battles to fight

And we have
More than you know in common
More than you know in common
No, we may not look a like,
But we both know our wrongs from right.

Gabby said her “Uh huh. Yeah-hee” type noises to add to the flow of the song.

More than you know
Than you know
(Dinah echoed Gabby, singing ‘than you know’ and it sounded nice. Why does Dinah think she is a bad singer?)
Than you know
In common.

Let me into your heart
You know that I’ll be there
You can use my shoulder
I will always care.

Please dry off your tears
(Though) it is okay to cry
Tell me what you want from me
And then you tell me why

So tell me the secret life you’re hiding.
Show me all the wars you're fighting
You don't have to hide what's in your heart.

(Dinah came in quickly with ‘Don’t hide what’s in your heart’, the last word’s note was held and the power of that sentence alone made my body gently shake. What was it about that one sentence… the way she said it that made me feel so weak inside?)

What is holding back your thoughts now?
Tell me the who, what, when, where and how.
What you tell me won’t tear you apart.

‘Cause we have
More than you know in common.
We both like to eat Shrimp Top Ramen.
Though we may not look alike
We both have our battles to fight

And we have
More than you know in common
More than you know in common
Mmm-hmm, we may not look a like,
But we both know our wrongs from right

Gabby seemed to get into it a little, doing her ‘Nuh-huh… yeah-ahah…” Then she did a string of:

More than you know, than you know, than you know…

Gabby seemed to sigh or catch he breath right then as John or whomever was on guitar paused and the timing was perfect. It made it sound good.

In common.

I heard a small pause, then it seemed as if the tape stopped momentarily. Then her voice made me jump. “So, there it is. Please don’t laugh at me, it wasn’t even my idea to turn it into a song. I forgot to mention that the poem, or lyrics to the song I guess… They are inside the cassette case… In case you couldn’t understand the words. Again, happy birthday. I am going to have John play the guitar music, just because it is pretty when it stands alone, and then that will be the end of the tape. There is nothing on the other side, sorry. So uh… yeah, that’s it I guess.” I silently hoped that there would be more, but that was it. I flipped over the tape just to see if there was anything on the other side and if Dinah was fibbing, but there was nothing… at first.

“So, you didn’t believe Dinah when she told you that there was nothing on the other side of the tape, did you? Well there isn’t, and this voice is only in your head…” I knew it was Gabby talking, which made me wonder what she was on. I talked to Gabby a few times when I would pop in and make sure Dinah wasn’t skipping school, and she seemed level headed and she seemed to know where she was going and what she wanted from life. Never once would I have thought of her to be the ‘Mt. Dew addict from Hell’, but then again, she could just be that way around her close friends. I heard a click somewhere in the background.

“Gabby? GABBY!!! What are you doing?!” Dinah yelled sounding so horrified that it made my laugh hysterically. By doing that, I had missed the rest of the conversation between the pair and had to rewind it.

“What?! I am just leaving a message on here in case your friend Helena decides she doesn’t believe that there is nothing else on this side of the tape… Curiosity killed the cat you know.” She said matter of factly.

“Nice choice of words…” Dinah muttered, but I could still hear it. “Go away, leave it alone.” She said, sounding a little irritated. Gabby laughed and seemed to leave the room. “Sorry about that, Helena. Gabby just drank one of those Starbucks energy drinks… my fault entirely for giving her the rest of mine. Shoulda known it was dangerous. Anyway, it is truly over. Again, happy birthday.” Then there was nothing else, so I flipped the tape over onto the original side and listened to the song a couple more times as I read along with the original poem dated 6 months before my birthday. Alfred came back when I was listening to it for the 5th time. It had just started when he entered and he stayed quiet as he tried to hear the lyrics to the song.

“If you ask me, Miss Helena, that is MUCH better than any techno-babbly explained gift, or soon to be family heirloom. That is a gift that clearly came from the heart and soul.” I nodded as the tape rewound again, and I wished that the words meant that she would be there for me as more than my friend. Even having a message like that intended for friendship made me stare at the radio in awe, wishing she would magically come out of it ready with a hug.

I was bored out of my mind by the time Dinah was supposed to get out of school, and I waited impatiently for her to get home. I had listened to the tape countless times. I tried to look for meanings to the song that she had written and I was trying to see if she was trying to tell me something without saying anything at all. I listened closely to her voice when she sang her short parts in the song to see if her voice alone was saying something I wasn’t catching. All I would ever hear is concern and a little bit of frustration as if I wasn’t letting her in and it was hurting her. I was laying in the den area of the Clocktower when Dinah had finally gotten home. I thanked her for the tape, giving her a hug (but refraining from kissing her on the cheek). Then I walked away, leaving for a sweep of the city.


Since there didn’t seem to be any morons who dared to piss me off on my birthday, I mostly just walked around enjoying the warm night. Sitting on the roof of an abandoned apartment building on the other side of town, Dinah’s song filled my head. It still needed a title and I wanted to do it justice. ‘Helena’s Song’ as sweet as it was, didn’t seem to help the song. Didn’t seem to make it better. A title for a song like that should grasp the listener before they even heard the first note. I wanted the title to also reflect what we do when the ‘normal’ people are supposed to be asleep. I mean, that was why she wrote it. It was about my loss over Guy and her feeling helpless, so she is reaching out her hand for me to hold, her shoulder for me to cry on. She wants to strip away the hurt and pain for me so I would be happy, and I know I want to do the same for her. I want to- THAT’S IT!! I jumped down the side of that building and ran through the alleys of New Gothem. It didn’t seem to take me long for my body (which seemed to be on autopilot) to get me to the Clocktower.

I looked around and then grabbed the tape from Alfred’s radio. I ran up the stairs and saw Dinah was on her bed reading a book. I knocked slightly and she looked up. “Helena? Are you okay?” She stood up as I slowly entered the room. I nodded, just now remembering that she had spoken to me. “Well, uh, what did you want, then?” It must have seemed weird for her to see me in her living space, slowly walking toward her, no emotion on my face. She seemed scared that I might beat her up or something.

“I need you to sing ‘Beneath Your Mask’.” I spat out before I lost my nerve. I handed her the tape stiffly.

“‘Beneath Your Mask’? Is that the title? I like it… But I already said in the tape that I can’t sing. That was whole point of having Gabby doing it.” She protested.

“But there is something missing. We both know it. I think you know what is missing from the song, and I would like you to sing it for me.” I argued softly. She shook her head.

“I can’t sing. Even if I knew what was missing from the song, I wouldn’t do it justice.” I took a few towards her and she quickly retreated.

“Please, for me?” I asked in a plea. I didn’t mean to use the same tone of voice Dinah had in hers when she asked me not to listen to the song with her in the room earlier that day. To my surprise, Dinah slowly reached out and gently took the tape from my hand. She put it into her tape player and fast-forward it to John’s guitar music. As she started to sing, I felt I was right, there WAS something missing, and Dinah knew exactly what it was that was needed. She wasn’t just reading words off of a piece of paper. She seemed to feel something. Emotion dripped from the words she sang and I was amazed that her singing voice was actually better than she gave herself credit. True, it was shaky, but only because she was nervous singing in front of me so suddenly without having the chance to warm up. Other than that, she was terrific, and though Gabby was an excellent singer, Dinah had her beat as far as this song is concerned. When the song was done we both stayed silent. I looked into her eyes and scenes from the day and of the dream made my body shake. I wanted to do many things in that instant, but none of them seemed to win the fight over my body as of what to do, so I stood there, eyes locked on Dinah’s.

I wanted to kiss her. I wanted to leave the room. I wanted to ask her how she got the idea to write the words she did. I wanted her. Now. I fought my eyes as they wanted to change. I slowly took a few steps back before I felt a hand on my shoulder. I didn’t realize that Dinah had gotten closer. Something was in her eyes. She wanted something from me. What did she want from me?

Tell me what you want from me
And then you tell me why.

That line echoed through my head as I tried to figure it out. I hoped that she’d want me to kiss her, but I didn’t want it to be a mistake and have her hate me. I felt her hand go from my shoulder to my chin as she stood on the tips of her toes. I seemed to feel her in my head.

Tell me what you want from me
And then you tell me why…

I couldn’t take it anymore. I lowered my lips to hers and I felt her react immediately. My heart pounded as her tongue slipped inside my mouth without warning or invite. In the back of my mind, I wondered where Dinah had learned to kiss, because as far as I knew, she’s never been kissed, or maybe that was just something she never talked about with someone like me. I mean, it did take a while before she pushed her way into my heart. I felt her slowly pull away and she watched me. “I-I want you, Dinah.” I blurted out. She seemed surprised, but then again… not, as if she already knew it, but just wanted to hear me say it.

“I wrote the poem a long time ago when I started to… dream about you. I wanted to write a message that told you how I felt. On the day I had finished it, I accidentally bumped into you and saw into your head. I saw that you had the same dream about me. Well, not the same, but the same type of dream…” She blushed some. “I changed some of the poem to make it… suggest that I am here and I want you to tell me you felt the same, and of course you never did. I don’t even think you knew you felt the same way, but the last few weeks I have felt it. Something was there… something that was more than friendship.”

“I never saw that.” I said in a voice so soft she seemed to strain to hear me.

“I think you were confused.” She said after a few seconds of thinking it over. “I sure was. I mean, I was so sure I liked guys. Then Gabby told me that she liked girls… a-and before she told me that, as naïve as I was, thought that wasn’t possible. But I wanted you. I think I always wanted you.” She said. She kissed me again softly. “I love you, Helena.” She said.

“I love you too.” I replied, surprised that I did. I’ve only said those words to one other woman and she has been gone for almost 8 years.

“I have waited for the longest time for the day when I could tell you that I have given you my heart.” Dinah said as I held her to me.

“Then I have received the best gift I have ever gotten.” I said to her as I looked into her eyes. I tried to tell her that what I said was true… because it was.

Erin Griffin Birds Of Prey Main Index