Mwahahaha. You think last chapter was messed? Let's just see now….

And, yes; Wally's suffering makes me happy. In fact, I'm pretty sure it makes us all happy.

Anyway, his suffering is rather short in the chapter, considering how short the chapter is itself. Hopefully it is good though.

Ah, the fruits of a disturbed mind….


Chapter 4: The Taste of Red Ink

The world was black. Just… black. Blacker than night, or Bruce's cape against it.

He was still and crouched, dizzy and unsure, and there were figures dancing around him, like bizarre, glowing fairies in a hallucinogenic dream.

He rose and peered into the darkness.

She was there. Again.

She swirled towards him, through the dancing shadows. He caught his breath as light flickered momentarily, but the darkness returned as she pressed into him, her smooth skin so cold against his.

His eyes were wide with terror, and he was tall and motionless. She pulled his head in, drawing his eyes up to hers. She leaned in and he could feel the ice on her breath.

You have so much potential…

The words had no voice, and Barry's lined face flashed in the background, a disturbed grimace splashed across.

She reached down, and he could feel her icy fingertips, massaging, tingly and cool.

'Wrong. Wrong. Wrong'. His mind chanted, hysterical and silent. All wrong.

yet you're such a fool. A small-minded, pathetic, worthless fool.

The pain shot through his lungs, and he choked to his knees . She grabbed his chin, and the ambience swirled around her. She pressed her frosty mouth to his, and he felt her teeth sink deeply into his tongue.

Unwillingly submissive, he tasted the iron, and began to drown in her….

You have always been mine.


His eyes snapped open, and the panic resumed as the water thundered in his ears, the salt pouring into his lungs and stinging his widening eyes. He spluttered hysterically and pushed for the surface, thrusting his head up as the bubbles escaped his lips. He gasped as he broke out into the air, the rain beating acerbically against the back of his head. He waved his arms beneath the water and scanned for the shore, blurred behind a screen of thickly painted fog.

A lighthouse smiled its beam in the hazy distance. His forearm came into contact with something lifeless and cold. The water swirled and dulled as he bobbed towards it.

The water was crimson against his skin, and his pupils grew small and sharp in observance of the floating thing.

A body.

Alarm surfaced in his pale, green irises and he pushed the water back to get near it. Shimmering, green satin clung to its hued body, darkening its curly blond hair with streaks of red.


His legs were heavy and numb and he struggled to keep to the surface, prayer streaming from his fervent, quiet lips as he dragged a leaden arm over Ollie's buoyant body. The body sagged slightly, and Wally pushed his arm behind Ollie's head in a desperate attempt to keep him breathing.

My, God. Don't die. Don't die.

He closed his eyes and the waves rushed against them.

Gotta think. Gotta think.

His fingers wiggled rapidly beneath the saline, grey surface.

You've still got your arms. And it's still there.

The water streamed down his face as he flipped to his back. Wrapping an arm around Ollie, under his back and grabbing on to the sticky green satin, he raised the other into motion. His rapid arm-circles caused the water to stream out in jets behind them and they propelled forward. He closed his eyes, tightly, and the water filled his ears so he could not hear the drilling noise his arm made as it hit the water.

He felt his back drag against the clay.

They had hit the shore, and the water had become shallow and frothy. His arm splashed against the surface and was still as he turned back onto his stomach, reaching out into the wet sand to pull himself forward, Ollie's limp body dragging beside him. Behind him, his legs were a wet, confused heap, and they contorted lifelessly as he slid out of the water. The gravel was abrasive against his elbows, and his forehead was even against the tiny pebbles as he spat out the sand.

He pulled Ollie up next to him, cradling his limp head.

"Oll, wake up-" his voice was soft and pleading. He ran desperate, sandy fingers through the damp, blond hair. "Ollie, please, just wake the fuck up." The eyes were pale and clear as they stared up into the rain, and Wally could feel the slight rise and fall of his chest. Wally bit his lip and stared down across Ollie's motionless body, his eyes widening as they came to halt at his abdomen. Melted skin and flesh had formed a pustuled, lumpy smear across his abs, where the green cloth had torn away. Wally's fingers convulsed and he ran a trembling hand over the mutated skin. A part of the flesh had torn away, and he could feel the soft, warm mushiness of Ollie's intestines. He winced, and the blood drained from his face.

His fingers immediately darted across the sand-plastered body for Ollie's commlink.

Please, God- tell me it's there-

He sighed despairingly.

His arm draped across Ollie's shoulder and he dragged him further up the beach, finally resting his face in the sand beside Ollie's ear. His richly-coloured, auburn hair was plastered low on his forehead, and it paled his skin in the contrast as he lay still beside the figure, listening to the breaths die away.

For a long time, the two were motionless on the beach as the waves licked the shore. Then, as sunlight began to poke out through one of the dissolving clouds, Wally raised his head, cocking his ears slightly. He lifted his arm, and his clothes hung off him wetly as the shivers ran through his muscles. Ollie was quiet, and Wally's white hand slowly brushed his transparent lids shut.

Wally's shoulders sagged into the sand, letting out only a small, lonely, choked sob before he, too, went completely still.


"Oh, my God! Ollie!" you must be thinking. "Is he dead!"

Yes, my friends, yes… Ollie is dead.

"But…this is….random!" you reply.

Well, all will be explained in due time. I mean, of course it will, right?


Oh, and, when something this messed up happens, as always, our friend Victor Sage is sure to make an entrance… but this is all 'next-chapter' stuff, so ignore ….