Author(s): SilverxDawn and TheBlueFoxtrot A Samba
Title: Desperate Times and Convenient Measures
Summary: It's a fact: when Wally has a good day, unexpected things happen. Usually not so pleasant ones.
Disclaimer: Young Justice isn't mine. Unless there's something she's not telling me, it's not my partners either.
Prompt: ULTIMATE COLLAB CHALLENGE - 'And the sad thing is, I'm still hungry for that.'
Wally had a good day. He'd been spared the usual treatment from the Jock Squad. The lunch was very near edible. And that cute brunette from World History had smiled at him. Or…in his direction. He wasn't entirely sure, but that didn't stop him.
After school, he even made it to Mt. Justice before Robin. Megan baked dozens of treats that weren't burnt just for him. He made a joke that actually made Superboy crack a smile. Kaldur didn't give him that disapproving look that made him feel like a naughty six year old when he'd super-glued Artemis' door shut.
That is how he knew – something terrible was going to happen. He won a trophy in the fifth grade on the track team or first place. When they came home, someone had run over his dog. In the second grade, he won a spelling bee. The next day, his best friend told him he was moving away…to China.
That didn't stop him from enjoying all the good. At least that way, he'll have some happy memories before everything went careening downhill. So, with all of that in mind Wally wasn't surprised when, on a long-awaited mission, he was paired with Artemis. He was ever so slightly more surprised when they interrupted an intergalactic arms deal involving a hell of a lot of lizard people. And, of course, he and Artemis were chosen as the decoys.
So that was how Wally West could be found sitting, in civilian attire, with Artemis Crock in a random restaurant. Sitting with Artemis Crock at a back table with six very angry lizard-people on their metaphorical tails. If he ended up being eaten when this was over, he would blame Artemis on principle. After five minutes, no lizard-people had materialized and soon the dynamic duo had fallen back into their old habit of roundly insulting each other, albeit quietly. Batman had worked diligently to work out their propensity to escalate to a yelling match while on missions. Very diligently. Safe to say, they no longer yelled.
"Snail," he muttered bitterly.
"Some of us weren't stupid enough to get ourselves blasted by lightning, nitwit," she hissed.
He scowled "Wouldn't have gotten blasted if someone freaking dodged, female dog."
She smirked, "Geek."
He cocked his head to one side, "Twit."
Artemis shrugged it off, "Carrot top."
Wally struggled for a split second, "Rapunzel."
"Ginger," Artemis smiled in triumph.
Wally's face turned as red as his hair, but somehow kept his cool, "Oh Arty, that's low, insulting my hair."
The archer rolled her eyes, "I insulted it earlier, and you didn't care. Besides, everyone knows that gingers have no souls."
Wally practically exploded, "Why you-"
The pair's verbal sparring was cut short by footsteps outside the door, they swiveled on their bar stools just in time to turn back before three of their six very angry lizard-people burst in, beady eyes whisking around every corner of the grungy bar before huddling in a group to confer. The restaurant was reasonably crowded, and the other patrons were too stunned to move in the aliens' presence.
"It won't be long before they notice us," Artemis muttered, not so subtly shielding her face with her hand
"Well, bright ideas are welcome, Goldilocks," Wally hissed back.
Inwardly, Artemis shuddered. Ideas may be welcome, but the one that came to mind was terrifying. Then, before she could change her mind, she grabbed Wally by the shoulders and kissed him, full on the mouth. Then, surprise-surprise, he was kissing her back. With gusto. It was a while before anything interrupted them.
That anything being a high-pitched, slightly eerie cackle and Wally and Artemis broke apart in time to turn and glare in unison at the tail of the Boy Wonder's cape whipping out of sight. They absently noted that the aliens had followed Robin.
Wally sent her an odd look. "That didn't happen."
With a whoosh his chair was empty, and Artemis was alone. Alone and a little confused.
And more than slightly freaked out.
After an awkward flight during which Wally and Artemis pretended not to stare at each other, the team went through their debriefing. It was decided that the League would take over the 'Invasion of the Lizard People'. Not Wally's most original title, but his thoughts were a little…frazzled. No sooner had Batman dismissed them than Wally dragged Conner – although that was a little difficult – and Robin away. As he went by, he pointedly did not look at Artemis.
Similarly, Artemis latched onto Megan who fearfully snagged Kaldur's arm. They marched single file out of the main cave. Batman watched then he turned right around and walked away. Give him intergalactic arms-dealing aliens over teenaged love affairs any day.
Please and thank you.
Conner and Robin sat on the couch in the common room. Wally paced in front of the television, alternately blurring in and out of super-speed. Robin, who was used to such behavior, waited it out patiently. His mind ran a mile a minute so it shouldn't take long. However, Conner was not used to such behavior, and patience wasn't something he excelled at.
"You are ten seconds away from explaining what this is about, or I'm out of here."
Coming to a halt, Wally's bright gaze zeroed in on the massive teen.
"What's this about? What's this about? Isn't it obvious?"
He only shrugged carelessly, not the least bit concerned about the hysterical red-head.
"That lunatic girl!"
The two most stubborn members of Young Justice seemed to be on the same wavelength this evening. Artemis had taken her captives to the garage bay. Kaldur rested against the wall while Megan warily levitated mid-air. Unlike Wally, Artemis had needed no prompting and delivered her rant with violent gestures.
"And another thing!"
Kaldur quietly sighed, and Megan eeped.
"Did you see the way that little twerp kept leering at me and then trying to pretend like he wasn't? If his demented little mind actually thinks there was anything to that charade, well, he's got a rude awakening coming! And how dare he just run off like that! What, does he think I have cooties or something? Does that dork think he's better than me?"
She took a breath, and Megan braved a word.
"Just why are you so against Wally?"
"Are you kidding me? He has got to be the most arrogant –"
"She is just so cocky–"
"High and mighty –"
" - idiot box on the entire face of the earth!"
" – in the universe!"
Robin stared with his eyebrows raised far over the cover of his shades. Conner's gaze was equally doubtful. They had no idea that Megan and Kaldur's faces nearly mirrored their own. Neither did Kaldur nor Conner know that they both had the same nagging, obvious question:
"How does that explain the kissing?"
And neither Artemis nor Wally could come up with a plausible explanation other than sputter and blush outrageously. It was positively entertaining for Robin and Conner to see the speedster without a thing to say, sputtering only that,
"She kissed me!"
"And you," Conner smirked, "kissed her back."
"You weren't even there!"
"Rob took pictures."
Downright smug, the accused held up and pointed to his glove.
"Let me help you out," Robin started.
"I believe that it is obvious that you and Wally are attracted to each other," Kaldur said with a knowing look. "I think you have noticed that he has made a pointed effort to be…somewhat friendly."
With an unreadable expression, Artemis stared at him then Megan who had a small smile. Then she exploded.
"Are you both insane? I am so not attracted to him! That's – that is totally just the most preposterous, crazy thing ever! I mean, he's an arrogant, egoti –"
"You said that," Megan gently interrupted. "But Wally is actually really nice. You know that he was just upset over Red Arrow not joining the team and saw you as his replacement. While he did behave badly, you really didn't help. If you despised him as much as you say, you never would have kissed him."
Artemis pointed at the Martian and opened her mouth, but Kaldur cut off her defense before she could start.
"She is right. You are an intelligent girl. You could have thought of an alternate way to avoid detection. Yet you did not. You thought to kiss him."
Megan smiled. "And you did."
Artemis stared, all the fight gone.
Wally stared, in a similar predicament.
"To summarize, buddy ol' pal, you like her."
With a meaningful look, Kaldur elaborated, "You like him, Artemis. The term is a 'crush', is it not?"
Red Tornado was deep inside the network of caves within Mount Justice. These particular catacombs housed much of the electrical components and wiring for the base. There were a few maintenance routines necessary to prevent breakdown. With a small blowtorch in hand, the android barely paused when two outraged screams echoed throughout the halls. It wasn't his concern. Dealing with the teenage angst was Black Canary's job.
Several hours later, after much denial and ultimately surrender, found a much composed Artemis walking through the corridors of Mount Justice, having finally escaped from the ridiculous allegations being fired from every direction. She turned a corner and walked straight into Wally;
"Watch where you're go-" Wally's sentence trailed off into emptiness,
"Goo-ooo-ooo?" Artemis repeated with a raised brow.
Wally turned beet-red, "Uh, I, um…" he stuttered,
Artemis beat him to the punch, "I'm free on Friday, around six. And yes, you just bagged yourself a date."
Wally went bug-eyed, as she walked past him and around another corner, "This doesn't change anything, Artemis!"
The archer's taunt echoed back, "I'm sure it doesn't, Wally."