AN: Just a little character sketch that came to me as I was watching Birds of Prey at one in the morning.
Contrary to popular opinion, the reason Asha Barlow spends all her time around Logan, Max and Alec is not because she is in any way in love with Logan. True, Logan is her best friend, but the man she loves? That place in her heart belongs to another, even if she never sees his face again.
No, Asha does not spend her time with them because she is in love with Logan, or because she has some strange desire to be Max. Rather, she comes back again and again because when she is with them, Asha Barlow remembers.
She remembers as Logan's voice, calm and commanding, feeds her instructions over her comm. unit. Remembers another voice, belonging to another paralyzed figure who once sat behind another bank of computers in another tower, in a city just as bleak as the one that surrounds Asha now.
Yes, when Logan Cale speaks it is a different voice that Asha hears.
She remembers still more when she looks in Alec's eyes and for a brief instance sees the eyes of another "younger sibling" who she once loved as deeply as she now does Alec. Those eyes are the eyes of one who has seen the absolute worst humanity has to offer, yet still retains an innocence that is unparalleled. An innocence that once shattered can never be regained again.
In Alec's eyes she sees both of those who became the siblings she never had.
Mostly she remembers during those brief times she is privileged to see Max and Logan fighting side by side. They flow, each anticipating the others' move, knowing instinctively where they need to be to protect their partner.
As she watches their strange yet beautiful dance, a voice from the past echoes in her head and in her mind she is once again fighting at Reese's side, the two of them moving as one, knowing that as long as they were together they could stand against anything fate threw at them.
No, Asha doesn't return because she wants to be Max, She stays because she once was Max. When she is with Max, Logan and Alec, the woman once known as Helena Kyle, can live again.
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