Disclaimer: I don't own these characters. Been getting into JLU recently and the Question and Huntress are starting to become one of my favorite couples. R/R if you like weird relationships.
My eyes lazily open as I stir from sleep. I roll over in an effort to dislodge myself from the curious place that is in between being asleep and being awake. I hate this state, hate it because it's always when the flashbacks come.
The light coming through the window is dull and dreary. It's an ugly day outside today. It's a gloomy day, overcast and giving off the famous impression that Gotham is a dark and foreboding place. It's not a wrong impression. Gotham is a very ugly city full of very ugly things. Few people realize what kind of scum lives here. Few people can even fathom it much less look it in the eye. I know how ugly Gotham can be, how ugly life in general can be.
The flashback happens on cue, as if it was designed to punctuate my last thought. Gotham's an ugly city and I've seen the darkest corners of it. The slivers of light piercing the clouds make me remember the way the light filtered through that closet door. I can hear the gunshots still to this day. I can remember peering through the crack in a closet door and watching my parents being murdered. I was only a little girl then. The world only got uglier from that day onward.
I turn away from the window. The small clicking of keys lures my eyes to where he sits at my desk, his trusty laptop already aiding him in solving whatever riddle haunts his mind at the moment.
"Q, what time is it?" I grumble. I try shaking the past away but there are some things so horrifying, so incredibly bone-chilling, that the ugliness of them haunts you even when you stop thinking about them.
"Five in the morning," replies Question without even turning to look at me, "I was going to wake you but I got side-tracked." I simply nod and watch him work. I asked him to come down here to give me some help on a case. Truthfully, I wanted to spend more time with him since both of us seem busy lately. We understand one another in some weird way and I like being around him.
"At least you took that off," I tell him as I see by the screen's reflection that he's not wearing his mask at the moment. I used to make jokes about his mask, used to call him the ugliest guy in the League. I understand him better now. Vic wears his mask because it keeps him anonymous. Anonymity is a weapon for us, a weapon used to combat the ugliness of the world around us. Wearing the mask helps Vic ask the really tough questions and find the answers to them. It also helps him avoid some answers though, avoid some of the ugliest truths about life. They're truths that only people like he and I could know because they've smacked us in the face so many times.
"I could very easily put it back on," assures Question, "After all, I don't have any guarantee as to who might be watching."
"It's only me, Vic," I tell him.
"It's never only you, Helena," he replies as he turns to look at me, dead seriousness in his eyes. From time to time, I believe what the rest of the League says about Vic Sage. Maybe he really is insane and seeing things that aren't there. But then there are other moments when I really believe in him, no matter how outlandish his theories may sound. Vic is a great detective and he amazes me. He's not afraid of life's ugliness, not in the slightest. Truthfully, I think he's attracted to it.
"What're you working on?" I ask him as I get up and come over to perch on his shoulder. It always irritates him when I do this and I always love doing it for that reason.
"League stuff," replies Question as I wrap my arms around his bare chest and rest my chin on his shoulder, "Green Arrow asked me to check some facts. You know me, Helena, I'm always the popular one." He smirks and I join him with one of my own. Maybe that's the attraction we have, the fact that we both feel like outcasts even among the others, who definitely aren't normal by any stretch of the imagination.
"I've got some time to kill," I whisper to him, "Care to have some fun?" The thin material of my Gotham University t-shirt is the only thing separating my skin from his since he's only in boxers at the moment. I lean in closer, letting my intentions be made crystal clear. He catches my drift, reads me like only those in our profession can read one another.
"One second," assures Question as he finishes sending an email, back-logging it and sending it through a string of dummy addresses so no one can trace it. My hand drifts lazily up to his cheek, gently stroking it. His hand unconsciously reaches for where his mask is kept but my other hand moves to block him.
"Leave it there," I tell him, "I don't care who watches."
"I'll remember that when the aliens come for us," smirks Vic as he gently kisses my cheek and I lead him back into bed. It's an ugly world we live in, a world where your childhood can be ripped away from you in an instant and where your own sense of reality can constantly be threatened. Sometimes I wonder what it is that creates people with lives as ugly as mine or Vic's. As I feel him crawl into bed with me and feel his body press closely to mine, I stop my questioning. Life is ugly for people like us. But maybe two ugly people can at least create something beautiful together, even if it only lasts for a short time.