By: C. W. Blaine (darth_yoshi@yahoo.com)

DISCLAIMER: Wally West, Kyle Rayner, Flash, Green Lantern and all other characters contained herein are copyright (c)2000 by DC Comics Inc. and are used without permission for non-profit, fan-fiction entertainment purposes only. No copyright infringement is intended. This original piece of fiction is copyright (c)2000 by C.W. Blaine. All questions and comments should be directed to the e-mail address above.

Author's note: This story takes place immediately after The Human Race storyline in the Flash monthly magazine and the Emerald Knights saga which was chronicled in the Green Lantern monthly title.

The Earth hung in the eternally dark horizon of the moon as Kyle Rayner, also known as Green Lantern, made some slight adjustments to the radio. He paused momentarily to gaze at the blue orb and thought to himself how incredible it was that he was here, on the moon, a member of the famed Justice League. He smiled and reached over to grab his cup of coffee. He turned away from the huge window and he brought the cup to his lips and then stopped.

The sensation against his lips was not hot or solid, but cold and pliable. He looked down and saw he had a cold hot dog weiner in his hand. He let out a small curse and threw it to the floor. The sound of laughter came from behind him and he whirled around to see Wally West, the Flash, sitting in a chair, feet propped up on the status board. He had his cowl pushed back to reveal his handsome features.

"You're a laugh a minute, man! Where's my coffee?" Kyle asked, agitation in his voice. He hated the fact that Wally could move fast enough to actually replace a cup of coffee in someone's hand as they drank it.

Wally snickered. "I put it in the airlock."

Kyle got up and walked over to the coffee maker. "That's great; now it's a damn ice cube!" Kyle looked at the coffee cups, each one emblazoned with the symbol of each member of the JLA. Apparently, nobody had ever discussed with the other members about cleaning out their cups. The only one that wasn't dirty (Plastic Man's had something growing in it) was Batman's.

"Yum, yum, this is sure good coffee," Wally said, sipping from his cup.

Kyle considered using his power ring to make him a cup to pour coffee in, but if he didn't maintain some concentration on it, it could just disappear, and Wally had a tendacy to make him lose his concentration. He grabbed Batman's cup.

"Wouldn't do that..."

Kyle considered for a moment. "You wouldn't?" he asked quietly.

"Nope. He'll know."

"Not if I clean it..."

"He'll know and then he might get mad," Wally said, downing the last of his java. He then held up Kyle's mug.

Kyle walked over and took his mug back; it was steaming hot. "What did you do? It wasn't this hot before you took it."

"Rubbed a little kinetic energy into it, you know, adding energy to electrons, electrons move which generate heat..."

Kyle waved him off and sat down. "Why are you here, anyway? I'm on for another four hours and then oracle relieves me. Superman said you'd be taking a couple of days off after everything you've been through lately."

Wally smiled. "Superman is nice like that, ain't he? Problem with that philosophy is that it doesn't take into account the fact I recuperate at an accelerated rate. Plus, Plastic Man got some new video games in I wanted to try."

"What did you mean that Batman would know if I used his cup? It's not like he's ever here."

Wally put his hands behind his head and leaned back. "Well, I've known Batman for years; my best friend, you know, was his original partner."

Kyle rolled his eyes to the ceiling and took a sip of his coffee. "Yeah, yeah...I know all about your history of forming the Titans, and how you are one of the most experienced super-heroes in the world, the idol of millions..."

"And don't forget the object of desire for women all over the world," Wally added smugly.

Kyle grinned like a chesire cat. "Then how come I'm the one who ended up sleeping with Donna Troy?"

"She was thinking of me," Wally shot back. He then straightened up in the chair. "You gotta remember when we formed the Titans, we were all really young. I was interested a little in girls, and Donna was pretty, but I was having more fun being Kid Flash."

"Man," Kyle said, running his hand through his black hair and removing his bulky green eye mask, "I remember watching the evening news and seeing the Titans on television. I'm what, maybe two years older than you? Yeah, and I remember saying to myself 'damn they have it made'!"

Wally looked at him with a serious look. "I was being manipulated by Raven then and my powers were killing me; how can you say I had it made?"

Kyle willed a green energy hologram of Donna Troy in a very skimpy Wonder Girl bikini to appear in front of them. "Because you got to work with that!"

They laughed and Kyle willed the figure away and picked his cup of coffee. "Hey, you were talking about the Batman."

Wally got up and then sat back down again, having made a trip to the kitchen and made them both sandwiches in the blink of an eye. "Here, eat up, old man," he said, handing Kyle a turkey on rye.

"No pickle?" Kyle asked in a hurt tone.

"Will one up, ring-boy," Wally said, biting into his peanut butter and jelly on wheat. "As I was saying before you interjected with your lustful adolescent fantasies, Bat-Boy and me, we were pretty tight from the get-go. I guess I was the first person he revealed his identity to outside of Gotham City, which didn't sit well with Batman. Luckily, I suppose that Batman and my Uncle Barry had some sort of good working relationship, so I was tolerated. In fact, I was the only super-hero friend he could bring home; Batman didn't exactly trust the other members of the Titans, except maybe Donna."

Wally took a big bite and smacked his lips as rudely as he could. "Everyone trusted Donna, though."

"She's easy to trust," Kyle replied, wishing he had a Coke.

"Yeah, she is. Anyway, the Batman just has this ability to know when you've done something you're not supposed to. I remember back when Robin and I were about 15 or 16, and we snuck into an X-rated theater in Metropolis...."

"No way!" Kyle exclaimed, nearly spitting his food across the room. "The glorious Titans, the models of proper teen behavior, sneaking off to watch a porno?"

Wally smiled at the jest, but gave no direct retort. "We go and see some movie and then decide to go and try to get a rise out of the girls at the Tower. I carry his lazy butt all the way to New York and we start trying to put the moves on our women; mine was Raven and his was Starfire..."

"Hold on, I remember reading in Teen Beat that Robin was dating Batgirl," Kyle said, taking a sip of coffee. Mixed with turkey, it wasn't very good.

"You read Teen Beat?"

Kyle suddenly turned a shade of red and then waved for Wally to continue his story.

"Let's say that Robin had a very active dating life as a teenager. Anyway, I got nowhere with Raven and ended up running back to Blue Valley and taking about four cold showers. I didn't show up for another meeting for about a month I was so pissed. Robin, on the other hand, is a lot more successful with Kory and is downright pleased with himself until he gets back home the next morning. As soon as he walks in the door, there's Batman, reading him the riot act with a minute by minute account of every single thing...and I mean every detail....of what he had done the night before, while still managing to bust up one of Two-Face's gambling dens! I tell you, he just knows things."

Kyle reflected for a moment. "You know, I realize he is the Almighty Bat and he represents the 'Little People' of the super-hero game, but he really gets on my nerves."

Wally finished his sandwich and produced two cans of Diet Coke. "Got to watch those calories."

"I'm not fat, am I?" Kyle asked, a worried expression on his face. "I don't want to get fat..."

Wally sat up and looked him over. "Hey, if you don't mind me asking, and I'm not asking in any kind of gay-homo sort of way, but you are awfully built for a guy who draws comics. You worry about getting fat, a lot?"

Kyle brought his left arm up and flexed his bicep. "Maria," he started with a fake German accent, "my muscles are getting so large, I'm afraid they will burst!"

Wally grabbed his gut and started laughing hysterically. Kyle was beginning to get quite the reputation for his impressions and word was that Plastic Man was going to challenge him to a duel soon. "Stop it, man; I just ate!"

When Wally had finally finished, Kyle continued. "Yeah, I've been working out a lot since high school, when I decided I wanted to draw comics. See, most super-heroes in the comics are pretty buff and if I get stuck on an angle or something, I can use my own body as a reference."

Wally nodded. "So what do you do if you're drawing a female character? Wear your mom's bra and stuff it with fruit/"

Kyle slapped his knee. "Aha! You're funny, West. No, usually I ask my girlfriend to model for me and if I'm not dating anyone...well, you'd be surprised what some of these art students are willing to do in the name of their craft.'

"You cruise the colleges for comic nerdettes?" Wally asked with a disgusted look.

"You stopped reading comics a long time ago, didn't you Mr. Speed? You would be very surprised at the babes that like to read comics...and I do mean babes."

Wally snorted and opened his drink. "Fine, whatever you say. When I was growing up, the only girls that read comics were very, very homely."

"Yeah, well it's different now, trust me." Kyle opened his own drink and drained it. After attempting to belch the entire JLA membership, he redirected the conversation to Batman. "Did you know he broke into my apartment right after you guys gave Hal Jordan membership? How does he do that? My ring should have alerted me."

"Training. Determination. You have to know why he does what he does," Wally said.

"So, what's the secret? Why is he so spooky?"

Wally looked out at the Earth on the horizon. "One word says it all and that'll be enough on this subject; I've probably said too much as it is. The reason he does what he does is because of love."

Kyle looked at him like he was insane. "Love? What does love have to do with it? He lives in a cave and gets into fist fights with psychopaths!"

"Love has a lot of meanings. Take you for instance: do you love Donna?"

Kyle thought for a minute. "I thought I did, really. I mean, she's beautiful, smart and strong, but she's also very secretive and distant. I never understood why she married that Terry guy; he seemed so lame for her."

"I know," Wally said. "We all liked him enough, 'we' being the Titans, but he was kind of a loser. Then she got pregnant and had a son. You can't even begin to understand what it was like for us male members of the Titans to see her get pregnant from that guy. Granted, I never got even the least bit romantic with her, but, man, was she head over heels for Robin."

"She'd talk about him a lot; it was obvious she had real feelings for him. You know, it seems to me that a lot of the women in the super-hero game have a thing for him...he is Nightwing now, right?"

Wally nodded. "Yeah, something about hard abs, rippling pecs, bulging biceps and a muscular butt; I never really paid attention, though. Honestly, I thought her and Robin would get together; I never saw the Terry or the Starfire relationships coming. Of course, I'm not the expert on lasting relationships. Robin was always caught in this four-sided prison he made for himself. In one corner there was Donna, in another there was Starfire, in a third was Batgirl, which you read in Teen Beat, right?"

Kyle mumbled his answer. "I had a thing for Batgirl so I picked up the issue."

"And then the fourth corner was the Batman, and that corner always won out. Whenever he would get close to either one of the three, the Batman would pull him away."

"Lot of good it did old Robin, though," Kyle said, smirking. "I remember a few years back when Starfire dumped him in favor of the little rich boy, Dick Grayson, heir to the Wayne fortune. The guy almost married an alien supermodel. She had to be after his money!"

Wally smiled and bit his tongue to keep from revealing that Dick Grayson were the same person. "So, you have a problem with rich people? I was rich once you know..."

Kyle waved him off and reached over to the status board to make the standard log entry. "Yes, we all know how the great Wally West won the New York state lottery; and then how he lost it all. And, I don't have a problem with rich people, there are plenty of people with money who do a lot of good things. Take Bruce Wayne, for instance."

Wally was becoming very amused and moved his chair closer. He put on his best poker face. "That's the millionaire in Gotham City, right?"

"Yeah, Dick Grayson's benefactor. See, Wayne gives millions to charities every year, even though the guy is basically a playboy. He at least takes the time to try and help others in need. That Grayson guy, though, he burns me up. Going out with tennis pros and supermodels, spending money like it was going out of style. The only thing I'm thankful of is that we don't hear too much from him anymore."

Wally didn't say anything, but made a mental note to talk to Dick about his image. "So, you had a thing for Batgirl, eh?"

"I saw her on T.V. once...that red hair, that spandex, those boobs! Damn, what I wouldn't have given to meet her. Oracle tells me she knew her. She was probably a real nice girl."

Wally decided to dig a little deeper. "What do you mean by 'was'?"

"Hell, Jordan killed her when he tried to remake the universe..."

Wally slapped his forehead. "You dork! That was a Batgirl from an alternate timeline! Didn't you understand what was going on?"

Kyle pursed his lips and hit the enter key, formally making his hourly log entry. "So, she's still around?"

Wally stood up and began stretching. "I have it on good word that she is officially retired. I'll pass your feelings on."

Kyle was visibly brightened. "Really? Think I'd have a shot?"

Wally laughed and shook his head. "I'm not sure, but I think she's dating Dick Grayson."

"Very funny, jerk," Kyle said as he got up and walked towards the door. "I'm getting me a real Coke, you need anything?"

Wally shook his head and watched as Kyle left the room. He then moved his wheeled chair over to the monitor board and reviewed the most recent files opened up in the database. He scrolled through the various files and then stopped at one that immediately drew his attention. He was about to access it when Kyle returned. "What ya doing, man?" Kyle asked.

"Snooping at what you guys do on monitor duty. Why are you reviewing old case files?"

Kyle walked over and peered down at the monitor. He saw the file that Wally was indicating. "It's not what you think."

"How the hell would you know what I'm thinking?" The Wally looked at the file again. "I didn't even know this existed."

"You've been a League member since there was a Justice League Europe and you never reviewed the old files? Not once?"

Wally sighed and looked up at Kyle. "The JLE didn't have equipment like this; in fact, we were working on a pretty limited budget as it was. If it wasn't for funds donated by Aquaman, I doubt we would have even been able to keep a headquarters."

"Most of this stuff, from what I understand, came from Batman and Oracle. The original records were destroyed when the Justice League satellite was destroyed."

Wally moved the pointer of the mouse, emblazoned with the JLA logo, and double clicked on the file. The speakers that were set up throughout the room kicked on.

"...and so it is with great reluctance that I accept the terms of the probation that have been placed upon me by the voting members of the League. For the record, though, I want to state that I did not intend to kill the Reverse-Flash and I ask that, if I am convicted, that you guys will do me the honor of watching out for Wally as he gets older. He's a great kid, and I can't help but hope that one day a cure for his condition will be found and he will be able to follow in my footsteps, should he choose to. This is Barry Allen, the Flash, filing my final log entry as a fully active member of the Justice League of America, this 12th day..."

Wally clicked the file off and Kyle saw that his eyes were tearing up. Kyle set his Coke down and laid a reassuring hand on the Flash's shoulder. "You know," Wally began, his bottom lip trembling, "I never got to thank him for everything he did for me."

"I know the feeling, man; I never got to tell my girlfriend, Alex, how much she really meant to me before she was killed."

Wally shrugged off Kyle's hand and stood up. He wiped his eyes and tried to put an upbeat tone to his voice. "Why were you looking though this stuff, anyway?"

"I came across it by accident," Kyle began as he sat down and began typing at the keyboard. The holographic projectors came on line and soon various women in colorful costumes began to appear. "I was trying to access all of J'onn's virtual records to try and get a feel of what it must have been like when the League was on top of the world." He motioned to the holograms. "Imagine, being surrounded by all of this female fantasy! Hawkgirl, Black Canary, Zatanna...."

"You know that the Canary had a thing for my uncle, don't you?" Wally asked.

Kyle shook his head. "So, did they ever....?"

Wally walked over to the Black Canary hologram. "No, but he did confide to me once that it was difficult resisting a beautiful 19 year old girl throwing herself in your path. I think it made Hal kind of jealous."

"The great Hal Jordan actually had a fault?" Kyle asked, laying the sarcasm thick.

Wally stopped and put his hands on his hips. "You have a problem with Hal? You guys seemed pretty buddy-buddy when you dragged his butt from the past."

Kyle paused for a moment and then looked down at the green power ring on his hand. "It was hard not to like the guy. Even then, way back then, he just oozed confidence and charisma. You couldn't help but feel heroic when he was in the room."

"It was always like that with him, I remember being in such awe of him back when I was Kid Flash. I think my uncle even got a little jealous of my hero worship of him," Wally said, checking out the legs on the Zatanna holgram. "Damn, she's too hot!"

"Kyle nodded and then walked over to the Wonder Woman hologram. "Yeah, but you can't beat this!"

Wally snorted and came over to admire the light projection. It was very accurate in the details of the Amazon princess. "Try getting near her and see what happens. The big three come and encircle her like covered wagons during an Indian attack."

Kyle laughed. "Thank God! I thought it was just me!"

"It's always going to be like that so long as Batman, Superman and Aquaman remain the power in the League. I swear, I'm surprised they don't mark their territory on her," Wally said, moving on the hologram of the Huntress. "Now, if I wasn't engaged, I'd be all over this."

"Oh?" Kyle asked with a smirk. "You mean just like you got Power Girl to go out with you when you were with the JLE?"

"Old news, man, old news. I have it on good word she's a tiger in the sack and all that leather..."

"Give it up, West; you're so dedicated to your fiancé it makes me sick. If Wonder Woman herself came in buck naked, you'd turn her down," Kyle said, moving back to his chair.

Wally shrugged and moved over to his chair and sat down. "Still doesn't explain how you came across the entry my uncle made."

"It was linked to some of the holograms; I think J'onn is working on some sort of interactive presentation about all of the deceased members."

Wally brooded on the thought for a second and then sighed. "He feels a sort of kinship to the dead heroes. When he was leader of the original Justice League of America, two members died under his command. Sometimes I think he's obsessed with death."

Kyle thought about their Martian comrade and how he spent his life in such solitude. "He's seen a lot of death, Wally, so give him a break. I can't imagine what it must be like for him." Kyle was silent for a moment and then whispered. "Then again, maybe I do."

"What do you mean?" Wally asked.

Kyle pulled off his power ring and held it in front of Wally. "Some people say I have the most powerful weapon in the universe, this ring. Yet, I can't bring Alex back to life, I can't bring back Coast City, I can't save Hal Jordan. It's hard knowing you can do just about anything except the things that you really want to."

"It's the same for me," Wally began putting his elbows on his knees and his head in his hands. "I can break the time barrier, which means I can go to the future and warn my uncle about what's going to happen to him, or go back in the past and help him fight the Anti-Monitor. I can't do it, though, because if there's one thing I've learned is that you can't change the past. If I save my uncle, then there will be nobody to destroy the Anti-Monitor's cannon and the universe will die. Either way, my uncle dies."

They were quiet for a moment and then Wally stood up and gave Kyle a friendly punch to the shoulder. 'Listen, I'm going to go try out Plastic Man's new video games. Stop by if you aren't too tired when you get off watch; I think Ray Palmer is coming up later, too."

Kyle nodded and turned back to the monitor screen. Just as he was walking out of the room, Wally heard Kyle call to him. "Wally, you don't like me very much do you? I mean, you try and everything, but you just don't really want to be my friend."

Wally sighed and turned around. "Listen, Kyle, I have nothing personal against you; in fact, we probably share a lot of the same interests. You've got to understand, I worked with Hal Jordan for nearly ten years. Hell, I worshipped the ground he walked on. Every time I see you, it reminds me of what he did and, to be honest, I don't like to think about it. It hurts..."

Kyle spun around in his chair. "I had nothing to do..."

Wally held up a hand, silencing the man. "I know and nobody blames you for what happened; we blame Hal. Most of us like you well enough, we just aren't accustomed to you. You show up, calling yourself Green Lantern and have a power ring that has no weaknesses. I guess I keep asking myself is why didn't give a ring like that to Hal? What's so right about you that wasn't right about him? I'm not sure I want to find out the answer. As far as liking you, if you learn to shut up and maybe get me some autographed pictures of Jade in the nude, maybe we'll get to be better friends."

Wally turned and walked out as Kyle responded. "Nude pictures of Jade? Hey, man, that's my girlfriend; that's not cool! How about some pictures of your girlfriend naked, huh? I've got some right here! Pulled 'em off the 'net!"

The End