Disclaimer: The characters sadly do not belong to me but if they did, this would be what would happen and all unanswered questions - would be answered.
A/N: This takes place a few months after the final episode of the final season of JLU. I haven't seen it yet so I am merely going on what I have heard from others. Each chapter will be told from a different point of view.
Many thanks to my wonderful beta MtGat from Live Journal. She is just fab.
Summary: Can John decide between following his heart or keeping his word? GL/HG/V
Chapter One – Straight Talk.
Wally stood back and looked at his long time friend as he fussed in front of the mirror. He never thought he would see the day when the Green Lantern would be concerned about his appearance. If someone had mentioned this to him months ago, he wouldn't have believed them but then, he hadn't known about this day.
"How will I do?" John's voice broke into his thoughts, pushing his inner turmoil to the side.
Wally shrugged his shoulders. He found himself in a difficult position and for once, he wasn't relishing it. He had to choose between two friends, pleasing one and hurting the other. Though the hurt party had told him she wasn't offended and, given earlier circumstances, it was the right decision to be here with John, Wally knew that his decision had hurt her. That was something that he had never wished to do but he'd had to make a choice.
"Rather good, GL," he finally replied, making his voice sound happier than he felt.
Wally knew that John wasn't a fool and would see through his seemingly happy smile and good mood, but he had to try and fool him, give it his best shot because he truly didn't want to cause heartache on a day such as this. Wally watched as John regarded him closely, his right eyebrow raised. Wally knew that he had been caught out and John was probably thinking it had been a bad idea to ask him to his best man. Neither of them could deny the inner conflict it had caused in at least three people but Mari had been adamant and no one really wanted to argue with her.
Wally felt around in his pocket making sure he still had the rings; he was relieved he hadn't forgotten them. He had discovered that being the best man involved much more than arranging the bachelor party. His worst task as best man had been breaking the news to Shayera.
Wally had been dreading this conversation for days. He had lost count of how many times he had practiced it in front of his mirror. But finally, his shift was coinciding with Shayera's, and if he didn't tell her himself, she'd be hurt even more when she found out.
"So, here's the thing" he said, as soon as he found himself alone with her.
"What is it?" Shayera said looking at him. There was a hint of amusement in her voice.
"Um. Johnaskedmetobehisbestman," he told her in a rush, refusing to look at her as he did.
He dared a quick peek and saw her shoulders slump and a hurt expression grace her features. Then she tried to hide it by quickly straightening up and smiling at him. He watched her as she reached for her mace. He was prepared to make a run for it. Instead of hitting him, she merely played with the handle.
"Oh! Congratulations," she said. "That is quite an honour."
"Shayera," he began "I won't do it if…."
"I am fine," she said, cutting him off before he could continue. "I need to go and do some maintenance right now."
Wally watched her walk away from him. He knew that she was hurt and that she was hiding it so he wouldn't feel guilty. He did feel guilty though.
Since that day, Shayera had remained at a distance from all of them, eating alone in her room, not socializing at all.. Wally hadn't shared a shift with her for weeks; they were usually paired up together at least twice a week. Wally had mentioned it to J'onn who'd simply told him that she had swapped shifts and not to press it.
"You're thinking about her," John said, breaking the uncomfortable silence that had filled the room.
"Aren't you?" replied Wally as he brushed a non-existent piece of fluff off his suit.
"No!" lied John "Not today. This is Mari's day."
Wally looked up, his eyes widening as they focused on the man before him. How could he stand there and say that? Was he so far detached from his feelings that he didn't know what he was saying? Wally shook his head in frustration and spat the gum he had been chewing into a nearby bin before speaking.
"It's meant to be your day as well, GL," he said. "You know that, right?"
Wally watched as John turned away from him and made his way back to the full-length mirror where he straightened his tie and closed his eyes. Wally watched with hope. He wanted to get John to think, to make sure he was doing the right thing. Surely John would have known that asking him to his best man would raise questions and that they would be the questions that he needed to be prepared to answer. If John had wanted the strong and silent type, he should have asked Batman.
Wally knew what he was taking about. There weren't many incidents that he could calm that but this was one of them. He wasn't always the serious one, he didn't always come up with the plans but he was a people watcher. He knew people. He had been with Mari as she planned the wedding to end all weddings. It was elaborate, colourful and everything John was not. Nothing about John and Mari's wedding screamed John Stewart.
"Buddy," said Wally as he darted towards John and stood in front of the mirror, preventing his view. "You sure about this?"
"Wally," replied John with a groan as he pushed him out the way "I am not discussing this and besides, there is nothing to discuss. Why can't you just accept that?"
"Because I am your friend, GL," Wally pointed out matter-of-factly. "And friends watch out for one another, you know that. So don't be giving me all this, there is nothing to discuss' stuff because there is."
"Friends accept their friends' choices," growled John as he walked away.
"Not when they both know," said Wally as he sped in front of him, "that he is making the wrong choice."
Wally knew from they way John had looked at him that he was hitting close to the bone and the fact that he had walked away meant that Wally was getting John to think. Wally watched as John tried to regain his composure and remain cool, calm and collected but he wasn't succeeding.
"Is she coming?" he asked, so softly that he almost whispered it.
"No," answered Wally. "She volunteered for watch."
He had tried to convince her to come. He'd hoped that her being there would make John see sense, but she had refused and then threatened him with her mace when he kept pushing. He smiled to himself when he thought about that mace. So many times Shayera had threatened to make him the fastest man alive with a limp but still he liked to push her. It was his job, rub people the wrong way and try to get them to see what was in front of them, but he also knew that ultimately, he had to trust his friends' ability to make their own decisions.
"Good," said John, nodding his head. "It's for the best."
"Bud," said Wally as he placed his hands on John's shoulders. "Come on!"
Wally felt John's hand come in contact with his shoulder and he stepped back, John brushed past him and growled. Wally knew that if John wanted to, he could have him up against the wall and knock the stuffing out of him before he even knew it, so he decided to use another tactic.
"What?" growled John, in annoyance.
"Fine," snapped Wally in reply. "I'm shutting up."
With that, Wally walked from the room and shut the door without looking back. He had said what he had wanted to say for months and it was now up to John. Wally only hoped that he would make the right decision and not be stubborn but whatever decision John made, he would be best man because he had made a promise.
To Be Continued...