But I really am sick," she insisted. To verify her claim, the little green girl put on the most realistic coughing display she could manage, finishing with a little moan for affect. Her father, however, wouldn't be fooled so easily.
"Jessica," he said sternly, placing his hands on his hips. "Do you remember what I told you about lying?"
He watched as the little actress cast her eyes down to the floor of her room, studying her toys.
"Yes," she said meekly. Raising her head, she attempted another plea of ailment, but was stopped before she could get a word out.
"Jessica, what did I tell you about lying?"
Her eyes traveled back to the ground.
"Lying is wrong," she squeaked, stammering ever so slightly.
She knew now that there was no fooling her father, and on top of everything, it appeared she was going to be in trouble for fibbing. She didn't want her father to be upset with her. Crumbling under his intense gaze, her breaths became ragged and tears began forming in the corners of her eyes.
Upon seeing his five-year-old on the verge of tears, Garfield Logan instantly felt his heart begin to ache. He hated having to be the tough parent and he hated even more seeing his little girl upset.
Kneeling down so that he was eye level with her, he outstretched his arms, offering comfort. She eagerly accepted, whimpering slightly and burying her face in his neck as he embraced her.
After a few minutes of holding and calm words, he decided it was time to get to the bottom of why exactly his little Jessica was trying to fool him in the first place. Holding her by the shoulders, he fixed her with a serious, yet nonthreatening gaze.
"Now, Jessica," he said calmly. "I want you to tell me why you were you pretending to be sick."
The child sniffled a little bit and rubbed her eyes.
"Cause I don't want to go to school," she said.
This quite honestly didn't surprise the former Titan. Though he had a sneaking suspicion as to why, he decided to ask the obvious question anyway.
"How come? You were so excited about it last week."
"I know," she said weakly. "But it's just…"
For a moment the girl remained silent. Then a look of pure sadness crossed her pretty face, and the green man could again feel his heart wrenching.
"The other kid's make fun of me."
Once more, the shapeshifter figured he knew the reason why, but asked all the same.
"What do they say?"
He could see her becoming upset again as she struggled to recall everything the other kids had said about her. It was almost too much for him to take.
"They say my ears are funny and my hair is weird and my skin is creepy," his daughter said softly, fresh tears rolling down her cheeks.
Garfield sighed in regret. This was something he had been dreading for a long time. On the day little Jessica Logan was born, he could not have been happier. She was beautiful, the perfect product of the love he and his wife shared. But still he couldn't help regretting that she hadn't taken a little more after Raven. He took one look at her pointed ears and her green skin and knew that she would inevitably have to face the fact that people were going to see her as being different.
Once more he offered his arms to her, and again she eagerly ran into them, throwing her tiny, little arms around her his neck.
"There, there," he said soothingly as she wept into his shoulder. "I know it's tough being different."
"Uh-huh" she whimpered.
"But you know being different's actually not that bad."
The child leaned back and gazed intently into her father's eyes.
"It's not?" she asked.
"Nope, being different is actually a good thing. It means you're unique, you stand out, you're special."
At the last comment, the little girl could feel her sadness lifting slightly.
"Special?" she asked.
Her father smiled.
"Of course. And Jessica, I don't think there's anyone in the entire world more special than you."
As the little girl smiled brightly at his words, he couldn't help thinking how this conversation might end up repeating itself in seven or eight years when her powers, whatever they may be, manifested. For the moment, however, he decided he would simply enjoy the smile that was gracing his daughter's beautiful face. She seemed really taken with the idea of being special; at least for a little while.
"But," she said, lowering her head. "I still don't like it when the other kids laugh at me."
He thought about her situation for a moment and was then struck with inspiration.
"Maybe we can do something about that," he said.
Raven had just finished placing the last of Jessica's lunch items into a brown paper bag when her husband entered the kitchen.
"Morning, Babe," he said, giving her a quick peck on the lips.
"Don't call me babe," she stated simply before turning and placing Jessica's lunch in her backpack.
Her husband gave a small sigh.
"How long are you going to fight that?"
She threw him a smirk over her shoulder and placed a hand on her hip.
"Depends on how long you're going to keep it up," she said.
Her husband gave her a toothy grin and then confidently marched over to her.
"But I just can't help it," he said, waggling his eyebrows and taking her into his arms. "You're just so hot."
Though she would have normally wanted nothing more than to lose herself in her husband's embrace the same way she had done so years before, these days being the responsible parent of the household always came first.
"Down, boy," she said, giving him a gentle push. "Where's Jessica? It's almost time for school."
"Actually," he said, giving her a sly grin. " I was wondering if you wouldn't mind doing a little favor for your daughter."
Jump City elementary was buzzing with life as the kindergarteners took advantage of what little time they had before the bell rang, running, jumping and playing on the school's equipment. Their squeals of delight suddenly ended, however, at the sight of an enormous green bird and a mysterious blue-cloaked woman descending from out of the sky.
The children began whispering in excitement when they realized their classmate, Jessica Logan, was sitting high atop the back of the massive animal. After it landed, the woman took the girl into her arms while the bird spread it's mighty wings, preening and posturing much to the delight of everyone in the schoolyard. Without warning, the bird then quickly shifted into the form of an athletic, green man.
"Have a good day sweetie," he said, giving Jessica a kiss on the forehead.
"We'll pick you up later," said the woman, also giving Jessica a kiss.
"Bye mommy, bye daddy," said Jessica, a little sadly as her parents quickly took off back up into the sky.
After watching them go, the children immediately ran up to the green girl, chattering with excitement.
"Wow," exclaimed a little brown haired boy. "You're mom and dad are superheroes?"
"I guess," said Jessica a little nervous.
"That is so cool," shouted a blonde girl.
A small dark skinned boy ran up to Jessica's side.
"Hey, we're going to play kickball at recess. You wanna play?"
"Um, okay," said Jessica with a little smile, suddenly feeling a whole lot better.
From atop a building across the street, the costumed Garfield and Raven Logan watched as their daughter suddenly became the center of attention.
"Look at that," laughed Garfield. "She's the most popular kid in school."
"I don't know," said Raven. "Are you sure we did the right thing?"
"Raven, it is a parent's sworn duty to go above and beyond for their child, whatever they may need," he replied, closing his eyes smugly and holding up a lecturing finger.
"Well aren't you mister know-it-all?" she said, smirking and crossing her arms.
He smiled in response.
"I must be. I got you to fall in love with me, didn't I?" he said placing an arm around her.
"Yeah, yeah," she droned, pressing against his chest.
She knew it was a cheap way to make friends and that some day Jessica would need to learn how to socialize on her own, but for the time being, the sight of her daughter laughing and playing with the other children convinced her that perhaps it was okay just this once.
A/N: Sorry the ending kind of sucks. I couldn't really think of a good line to go out on.