Disclaimer: I don't own Justice League Unlimited or Teen Titans. It would be cool for me if I did, though.
Chapter One: The Unexpected
As Wally West sat in the restaurant, only one thought dominated his usually busy mind:
That's a big burger.
Wally took in his surroundings, and instantly realised he was in Louie's Diner. He grinned as a feeling of familiarity washed over him. He loved Louie's Diner, mostly because they would feed him as many burgers as he wanted, no questions asked. Though he had never eaten a burger quite this big before. It was literally a huge burger, being the size of one of Bruce's dinner tables. Wally wondered if he should be curious as to how they even managed to find an oven big enough to bake the bread bun, but settled for shrugging.
"Hey, more for me," he said, rubbing his hands together and licking his lips in anticipation.
Just as he was about to take his first bite, the burger opened, and a voice emerged. A familiar voice.
"Wally? Are you there?"
The red headed speedster frowned in confusion. "Shayera?"
The burger opened and closed with every word spoken. "Wally? You better not be sleeping in again… Wally! Wake up!"
"What? I'm not sleeping! I'm just eating you! Is that a crime?"
"Wait… if Shayera is a burger the size of a limo, then… ah, dammit."
Wally's eyelids slowly rose, revealing the bleary green eyes hidden beneath. He sat up in his bed and yawned slowly, proceeding to rub his eyes as he gradually made his way out of bed.
He scowled at the closet where his Flash costume and communicator were kept. "Give me a minute, Shayera! Geez, you'd think it was a mission or something…"
Wally's eyes widened.
He rushed over to the closet and quickly got changed into his Flash costume, quickly pushing his hand to his earpiece.
"Uh… sorry! Coming, coming now!"
He said it so fast he wasn't sure that Shayera had heard a single word except 'sorry', but that was the only word that mattered anyway. As he hopped around the room trying to pull on his golden boots, he noticed a note next to the phone. He noticed it for what seemed the hundredth time that week. He really had to tell Bart to stop taking messages for him. It seemed that every time he picked up the phone he ended up confusing or annoying whoever was calling. The note simply read:
Heather called – she's smoking hot, so you're crazy if you don't.
That was another reason Wally was getting continually irritated with Bart picking up the phone. He would let out little comments like that and completely ruin the state of Wally's love life. Not that it was anything to brag about before Bart came along, though he would never admit that to anyone. Well, except Shayera and Dick, but they knew without Wally having to tell them anything. Wally was just glad that Bart spent most of his time with the Teen Titans as Kid Flash, although he did miss the teenage speedster now and then.
Only now and then.
The left boot finally relented and slipped on.
Okay… leftie decided to fit, so about you follow suit, rightie?
But the right boot would not give up; it would rather be crushed than fit on Wally's foot. The Flash was never the luckiest of people when it came to the little things. The big things were no problem. He was in excellent health, he had great superpowers, and he lived in a city where the people adored him. But throw any little things at him, like trying to keep a roof over his head and meet women? No way.
Another thing he had trouble with was boots.
And of course, for someone who wasn't lucky with the little things, all that hopping was bound to lead to an unfortunate ending for Wally. He toppled forward, his face colliding with the wooden floor before he even had a chance to raise his arms. Landing with a loud thud, Wally only let out a muffled groan before rolling over onto his back. A banging came from below him, followed by the angry, muffled voice of Mr Reid.
"West! It's 3:00 AM! Keep it down in there! People are trying to sleep!"
3:00 AM? 3:00 AM!
Wally quickly sat up and violently jerked his right boot onto his leg.
She got me up at 3:00 AM!
"Sorry, Mr Reid."
"You'd better be sorry, you little snot nosed punk kid!"
Wally smiled. "Thank you for understanding, Mr Reid."
He quickly stood and was about to leave when he saw the note once again. With a frown on his face, he paused for a moment before he quickly ran out of the room, locking the door in a blur of red and yellow. He slipped the key underneath the door and took off, glad to get out of the enclosed space of his apartment. As much as he loved that place, it always felt wrong to him to be in there in his Flash costume. That scarlet and gold costume represented freedom to the red headed speedster, it always had, and it always would.
After exiting the building out of an open window, Wally shot down the building and onto the street, heading for his rendezvous point with Shayera. The winged heroine's voice hissed over his communicator.
"Wally! Where are you?"
Wally scowled and put his hand to his earpiece. "I'm coming, Shayera. Geez, lighten up!"
"Lighten up? Lighten up! You were supposed to be here early! You know, when you said, 'I'll be there early, since it's my home town'?"
"I believe I said 'home turf'," Wally responded in an aristocratic voice.
Shayera just growled and ended the conversation. The Flash grinned.
She's not angry. Not really.
Shayera was angry. Really angry.
And it was usually a certain speedster that made her this way. Sure, she had been angry at criminals and villains before (and Batman more than a few times), but Wally was the only person she had met who could consistently make her angry, worried, or generally subject her to unhealthy amounts of stress. And he always knew he was doing it, with a happy grin and nothing but airy joy in his eyes. But that didn't mean that he was on her mind a lot. Pretty much the opposite; since they spent so much time together, Shayera's brain had created a wall to prevent thinking about Wally, because otherwise too much of her time would be taken up with the Scarlet Speedster.
That left her thoughts to linger on the two men dancing around in her life at the moment; Carter Hall and John Stewart, Hawkman and Green Lantern respectively. Shayera closed her eyes and shook her head, silently berating herself. It wasn't like those two were anything to linger on, seeing as Carter Hall was a slightly brain damaged (if handsome and charming) man who thought he was a descendant of an ancient Thanagarian, and John was seemingly over her. Overall, her love life wasn't anything to show off.
Yet another thing that she and Wally had talked about. As the self proclaimed Fastest Man Alive intruded through her mental wall, he arrived on the rooftop, coming to a quick halt next to her.
Shayera frowned. "Damn right, you're sorry. You should have been here an hour ago."
Wally's eyes widened beneath his crimson mask. "2:00 AM? Really?"
"Actually," Shayera said, sighing, "you were supposed to be here at 1:30 to 'scope out the place'. Ringing any bells?"
Shayera sighed again, and put her hand on her face in exasperation. "Never mind. You're here now."
Flash nodded and followed Shayera's gaze to the warehouse opposite them. "That's the place, huh?"
Shayera nodded, and Wally frowned, crossing his arms. "I don't like it."
"Why?" Shayera asked, a slightly amused eyebrow raised.
"Because I don't like anonymous tips. They always end up being bad or spooky. Do we even know who it was that told us?"
Shayera shook her head, her red hair tossing slightly as she did so. "That's why it's called anonymous, Wally. He didn't leave a name, and we couldn't trace the call."
"You do know this is probably a trap, right?"
"We can't ignore it. We don't know what's in there."
"I know," he huffed, and let himself relax. "So… how are things with you? Hawkman called you back yet?"
"That's not funny."
Flash raised his arms defensively. "Okay, okay…" Wally paused. "So… you talked to John recently?"
"No," she responded automatically. She paused and an eyebrow rose. "Why?"
"No reason," Wally said, a conspiratorial smile on his face.
"What have you done, Wally?" Shayera asked warningly.
"I haven't done anything."
The red haired Thanagarian paused. "What's that supposed to mean? Is John-?"
"I'm not saying anything."
Shayera grit her teeth. "Wally…"
"Sorry. My lips are sealed."
Shayera slowly clenched her fist, and Wally barely hid his wince, wondering if he should move out of her reach. She took a deep breath and calmed herself.
"Fine. Let's change the subject. How are things with you? Is Bart okay?"
Wally sighed, silently glad that Shayera had changed the subject. "He's fine. He just causes me a lot of trouble."
"You mean as Kid Flash?"
The Flash squirmed slightly under such scrutiny. "More with my social life."
"Ah, I see," Shayera said, smirking.
A scowl broke out over the speedster's face. "What?"
"You're blaming someone else for your woman troubles. And a kid, too. That's not very heroic, Wally."
"I'm not-" Wally's voice rose a defensive octave, and he calmed himself before continuing. He leaned closer and continued, his voice a low murmur. "I'm not blaming Bart; he does cause me trouble."
"Oh, come on. Like what?"
"Like when I'm out and Bart's home alone and decides to take my calls for me."
Shayera smiled. "I think that's pretty nice of him."
The scarlet speedster laughed sarcastically. "It would be nice of him if he didn't ask questions like 'are you hot? 'Cos Wally only goes out with hot chicks'."
This time Shayera burst out laughing, though her laughter was anything but sarcastic. The Fastest Man Alive scowled and she covered her mouth.
"Sorry. So does Bart… help with all the women? Or do you…"
"Oh no, I've got a few… uh… prospects."
Shayera smiled. "And would these prospects have names?"
"Uh… well… when I said prospects, I meant… uh…" Wally's voice lowered to a mumble. "…prospect."
"I'm sorry. What was that?" Shayera asked mockingly, cupping her hand around her ear.
Wally threw his arms up in the air. "Fine! It's just one girl, all right?"
Green eyes rolled. "Not Fire again…"
Flash smiled sarcastically. "No, it's not Fire." He paused. "She is hot though…" he said dreamily, his eyes wandering up to the sky.
"Wally? Could we stay on topic?"
The redhead shook his head quickly and grinned. "Sorry. Anyway, her name's Heather. I met her at the K.C.P.D New Year's party."
"You were invited to the New Year's party?"
"Yeah. I perform a vital and important function in the police force of the twin cities, thank you very much."
"You do know you're a mechanic, right?"
"A mechanic's important… and I save their butts every day as the Flash, so… I figure I should have been invited anyway."
Shayera shook her head. "Right… anyway… do you like her?"
"She's okay," he said nonchalantly, shrugging.
"What's wrong with her?" Shayera asked, a tired strain on her voice from the many times she had asked him this in the past.
"Nothing! It's just… I dunno… there's something…"
"What? You know, I sometimes wonder if you just don't want to get in a relationship with a woman. Have you had bad experiences or something?"
"You have no idea…" Wally mumbled, turning his head away.
"I-" he stopped as he spotted movement in front of the warehouse in front of them. He pointed it out to Shayera, who quickly turned to see the costumed villains known as the Key and Livewire approaching the large metal door of the warehouse.
"Since when do they work together?" Wally whispered, and Shayera just frowned in response. She readied herself to stand up when Wally put his hand on her arm.
"Wait. Let me have a try first," he said, shaking his hands to loosen the joints.
"You're kidding, right?"
"Ah, come on. It's my way of making up for being late. If I need help, feel free to fly in. But I don't think I'll need it," he said as he grinned, winking at her.
"Oh, yom shigureth… fine. Knock yourself out. Which you probably will."
Flash cricked his neck, his grin growing. He rubbed his hands together in anticipation. "Well all right."
"Remind me again why we're here?"
The Key didn't look at her, simply staring forward as his key worked on the electronic lock on the warehouse.
"Because Grodd said so."
Livewire yawned theatrically. "You're such a good soldier, you know that? He's just a gorilla."
"A gorilla that can fry your brain with much more efficiency than your powers could muster, so I suggest you be quiet and look out for anything suspicious."
The blue skinned girl grinned. "Oh, please. No-one's gonna think to look for us in this boooring warehouse district. What's in there, anyway?"
The Key sighed, halting his unlocking process as he turned to look at her in frustration. "It's-"
He was interrupted by a red blur slamming into him, sending him hurtling back and skidding along the floor, eventually coming to a stop below a water tower.
"Your jail sentence, buddy," the Flash said, his hands on his hips and a grin on his face. He turned to face Livewire. "Hey cutie. You with him?"
"Yep," she said, smirking as she charged up and threw several bolts of electricity at him. The Fastest Man Alive easily dodged the bolts, keeping his arms crossed as he dodged.
"Oops, missed me. Missed again. And again."
Livewire scowled and growled in frustration. She charged up her electrical field and created a storm of electrical bolts. Flash still managed to dodge the bolts, though his cocky demeanour had disappeared.
"Yow! Hey! Watch it; you almost got me that time!"
She couldn't believe it. He was laughing at him. At her, Livewire, the supervillain who could give Superman trouble. And now some fast footed punk dressed like a tomato was giving her the run around. A bolt of golden energy struck the Flash in the back, and he yelled in pain as he fell forward. Livewire looked over to the distance to see the Key approaching, his weapon smoking slightly from being recently fired. Smirking, she poured on the current, sending electric shock after electric shock through her opponents' body. The Key looked over at her.
"Keep him still. I'll open the door."
He was about to walk forward when he heard a loud warrior cry, followed by a mace slamming into his chest, sending him flying into the warehouse opposite. Upon impact, he dented the metal door, seemingly falling unconscious from the blow.
Shayera turned her attention to Livewire, who was still electrocuting Flash with everything she had. Shayera flew towards her.
Livewire looked up at her and stopped her barrage on the Flash to fling a bolt of electricity at her. Shayera smirked as the electricity was attracted to the mystical energy of her mace. Livewire's eyes widened and Shayera swung her mace forward. Livewire managed to erect a force field to soften the blow, though it still ended up sending her flying backwards and into the air. Shayera looked over her shoulder to see Wally getting to his feet and giving her a thumbs up before charging towards the quickly recovering Key. Shayera turned her attention to Livewire, easily deflecting her electrical attacks.
Meanwhile, the Scarlet Speedster ran towards the Key, who was staggering to his feet. Moaning in pain, he looked up to see the Flash on what seemed to be a collision course. He placed his Key weapon face down on the ground in front of him and fired, sending shockwaves out through the ground. Knocked back by the shockwave of energy, the Fastest Man Alive quickly recovered, flipping to his feet and skidding backwards slightly. As he brought his head up to look at the Key as a bolt of golden energy slammed into his chest full force, sending him shooting backwards below the same water tower he had earlier slammed the Key into.
The Key allowed a small smile before heading over to the struggling Livewire. He fired his weapon as he closed in, hitting Shayera directly in the back and through the metal door of the warehouse to which they were trying to gain entry. Livewire floated down next to the Key.
"What took you so long?"
He didn't respond. "Watch them while I go inside."
He stepped forward, but was knocked back by a blur of red and yellow. He tried to fire his weapon, but quickly found he was being thrown upwards in a cyclone. He looked over at Livewire, who was obviously having a hard time concentrating enough to use her powers. He made a mental note; Grodd would want to know about that. As he felt the air being pulled from his lungs, he fired his Key weapon down at the ground, tearing it apart. The Flash tripped on the debris let loose by the explosion and fell forward, his cyclone disappearing.
The pair landed, and Livewire put her hand to her head and moaned from the motion sickness. The Key shook his head and took aim at the scarlet speedster, only to find himself caught in a miniature whirlwind created by the Flash spinning his arms at high speed. Unable to keep their grip on the ground, the two were thrown back into the water tower.
Wally took a deep breath, and was about to go inside the warehouse to find Shayera when Livewire, seemingly recovered from her nausea, was once again bombarding him with electricity, albeit from a distance. The Key stood next to her, a slightly smug smirk on his face. Wally toppled forward in pain.
Shayera pulled herself out of the twisted metal and instantly saw Flash keeled over on all fours, gritting his teeth. She stepped forward, about to intercept the electricity with her mace, when Wally shook his head.
"Water tower…" he managed, looking over to where Livewire and the Key were stood. Shayera looked over and nodded, taking to the air. The Key instantly noticed her, firing his weapon at her as rapidly as he could. She gracefully dipped and arched over the energy beams and slowly began to spin her mace. After building up the right amount of momentum, she tossed the mace at the water tower, smashing a hole through the side, sending a torrent of water out over Livewire.
She yelled in pain as electricity danced around her, and the Key backed away to avoid any harmful side effects from his proximity. She collapsed to the ground, unconscious, and the Key quickly recovered from the loss of his comrade, firing off yet more shots at Shayera in a vain attempt to hit her. He ran around behind the water tower, obscuring himself from Shayera's view. Cursing, she flew around, feeling almost naked without her mace. As she encircled the water tower, she saw the Key taking aim, only for his weapon to suddenly disappear from his grip.
He looked at his hand in amazement, then looked over to his right to see Wally twirling the weapon on his finger, the familiar Flash grin on his face. He looked back to Shayera, but was only greeted by her fist, instantly knocking him unconscious.
"A nice job, if I say so myself," the Fastest Man Alive boasted, tossing the weapon over his shoulder.
Shayera grinned, picking up her discarded mace. She frowned.
"Looks like we missed one," she said, nodding over Wally's shoulder. The Flash grin disappeared, and he looked over to see a shadowy figure retreating around the corner of a warehouse in the distance. He looked back to Shayera.
"You look after these two; I'll take care of him."
"You mean like you took care of them?" she asked, gesturing to the unconscious forms of Livewire and The Key.
"Yeah… well… whatever."
And with that, he sped after the mysterious figure. Shayera shook her head.
The figure turned in alarm. Wally squinted. Whoever they were, they seemed awfully familiar…
"Trying to leave the party early, bud-"
Wally was knocked back by pink energy, slamming him into the wall of the dark alleyway. He shook his head.
The figure stepped out of the shadows. His eyes widened beneath his mask, and his jaw dropped. She was exactly as she was when he had last seen her, though older. The only difference was her eyes. They lacked the energy that had attracted Wally to her all those years ago.
"Jinx? What're you-?"
Before he could finish, Jinx hexed the wall behind him, causing it to collapse on him. He attempted to move, but he tripped over his own feet, falling to the ground with a thud. The bricks collapsed down on him painfully, encompassing him in darkness.
He looked up, his vision still blurry from being knocked unconscious. He saw the faint flickering of red and blue.
"Cops are here already?"
"Flash… you've been out for about half an hour."
He sat up quickly. "Then... did you find-"
Shayera shook her head. "No, he got away."
"He's a she. It was…" he looked towards the collapsed wall of the warehouse.
"…someone I know."
"What? A rogue?"
Wally shook his head. "No. Well, yeah. Kinda. She's not…" He sighed, rubbing the back of his neck. "It's complicated."
Shayera put a hand on his shoulder. "Are you okay?"
He frowned deeply beneath his mask. "No, I'm not. I want to know why she's doing this. And I'm going to find out."
The scarlet speedster sprang to his feet, startling Shayera slightly.
"See you back at the Metro Tower."
Before she could respond, he was gone, leaving only a gust of wind in his wake. She frowned in thought, wondering who it could have been to have had such an effect on him. Very few things could make Wallace West become so serious. Shayera's eyes widened slightly as something occurred to her.
Wait… a she? Maybe an old flame?
After watching the police take Livewire and the Key away, she took to the sky. As she rhythmically beat her wings in the crisp morning air, she looked down on the glistening city as the sun rose in the horizon.
And here I was thinking we'd run out of things to talk about…
(A/N: All right, all right, I know that Teen Titans isn't officially in continuity with Justice League Unlimited, but it could be, and that's enough for me. Lightspeed got my writing gears working, and some Christmas Flash graphic novels got them spinning at... erm… light speed, I guess.
And for those of you who've never seen the show, trust me, it isn't required (though it is recommended). All will become clear later on in the story. Same goes for the Bart/Kid Flash references. I just thought it'd be something fun for Wally and Shayera to talk about.
Anyways, what'd you guys and gals think? Interested or bored? Review and inform!
And happy New Year, peeps.)