A/N: A little friendship drabble. Romance if you squint, but whatever. And sorry if Artemis is a little OOC. I tried super hard on her... She's not easy all the time...
Disclaimer: I don't own anything.
Not a Replacement
Wally had noticed Artemis's behavior. She never socialized. She never made the effort to spend her spare time with the other members of the team. She just generally wasn't a people person.
"Come on," whined Wally from the couch where he sat beside the rest of the small team, his emerald orbs fixed on the blonde girl as she tried to take the final step into the all-consuming darkness and leave the team once again to be off on her own in Mount Justice. "Quit disappearing all the time. Join us." His voice was slightly pleading, not wanting to see her walk off again. He was so tired of seeing her just run off without another word.
Artemis's sapphire tinted eyes glanced over her shoulder. She was able to see the whole group gathered on the couches with their feet comfortably kicked up and their faces laced with eager smiles, but it just had to be Wally to speak up. If it was Superboy or Kaldur or Megan or Robin, she might've had a second thought on the matter. But it had been Wally. She knew where his loyalties were.
The girl just padded away, ignoring the groan of Robin saying, "She's no fun! Why can't she be more like Speedy?"
That was what struck home like an arrow through her heart. Because she was always the lesser. She was never truly accepted as someone else. She was just-
"What is up with you?" asked Wally, appearing in all his redheaded glory right behind the girl. He had wasted no time in making his presence known and stating his obvious annoyance. "You're so... anti-social."
"No, I'm not," she said firmly, fists quietly clenching tightly. Her denial was all too clear. "I'm perfectly fine with socializing."
The ginger took a few moments to look around as he followed her into the blackest pits of the halls of Mount Justice. He watched the shifting shadows and growing darkness with some suspicions forming in his usually bull-headed mind. "...then why are we not with the rest of the team?"
"Because I'm not even part of this team," she said, slowing down a little bit as her heart sank in her chest. The words were finally out in the open for the world to see instead of her usually pessimistic mind just saying them over and over again. "I'm just filling in."
Wally's brows knit together quietly as his lips twisted into a pursed look of slight confusion. "What are you talking about?" he asked, voice having an almost hostile undertone. He moved from her side to walking in front of her since she wasn't moving quite as fast. "You're totally part of this team."
She stared at him with hardened eyes for a moment, eyes flashing with anger for a short moment before she looked away, eyes darting to where the wall met the floor on her right. Artemis couldn't help but feel neglected between the words of Robin and the speedster that walked right in front of her with those intent emerald eyes. "You guys don't want me," she said, one hand finding the elbow of her other arm, holding it almost nervously like most girls would. "I'm only filling in until you get what you want."
Brows still furrowed, Wally tried to trace her words to a source. He was incapable of piecing together the information she was giving him. "What are you talking about? We want you! You're not filling in for anyone."
Instead of looking at him, Artemis just stopped walking towards where she was heading down into the dark hallway. She just stood there quietly for a few minutes, arms folded neatly across her chest and her body slightly turned away from Wally and towards the side of the hallway to her right. A single name passed her lips. "Speedy."
This did make Wally pause and step closer after having walked a good yard or so away from the beautiful blonde with his back towards where they had been heading.. It finally made sense for him. Both were archers. Both had stubborn personalities. But which name came up more when it came to friendships?
Wally recalled that Robin brought up Speedy's name more than once while Artemis was around. He also brought up the fact that he wanted Speedy on the team. The ebony-haired teen never failed to show his wanting for the newly renamed Red Arrow with the rest of the "sidekicks" as they had once been called.
Artemis made no attempt to wait for Wally to respond. "I'm only here until he joins, right? I'm just replacing him until he gets to his senses and comes back." Her bright sapphire eyes didn't stray from the joint in the wall and the floor had she had fixated her gaze on. "You guys don't really want me. I'm just here."
"No no no no no," insisted Wally, shaking his hands out in front of her like he would've to stop a car that was coming at him. Of course, he could've run away from a car, but Artemis was someone who would always be there. He could run from her, but the danger would always be there, just waiting for him to come back. "No. You're not a replacement."
"You guys want Speedy. Not me." Her diamond blue gaze flitted to the redhead that stood before her with his freckled face watching her intently. "His name always comes up whenever we talk about expanding the team. Kal and Robin want Speedy, and you know Megan and Superboy don't like me, obvious reasons there, so why should I even stick around while you wait around for another hero?"
Wally sighed. He saw how right she was on so many points. He didn't like it, but he knew what she meant. The ginger took a deep breath, and he looked in her eyes as they found his. "Waiting for a hero gets lonely," he said, eyes glowing with faint, unreadable emotions. "You're still part of this team and part of this Justice League family."
If only he knew the dramatic irony of that statement. She was no more of family to the Justice League than Wally was smart. But she had the skills to pass for a hero. "Go wait for Speedy without me," she said, beginning to head off into the dark caverns of the hideout, brushing past Wally without another care. "I'm not going to be a replacement. I'm not Speedy and I never will be."
The last thing Wally saw of her was her swishing blonde ponytail and her sashaying hips. She was no replacement in his eyes. She was exactly what the team needed. A little spitfire to keep them on their toes. That was something Speedy could never be.
A/N: Hope you liked it. The pairing is actually a bit addictive, but this was really meant to be friendship more than a pairing… Reviews are much appreciated!