Hall of Justice- 19:24
"That all changed when Artemis died."
She shut down. Herfault.Allofthiswasherfault.She'd never felt so ashamed, so weak, so… stupid. If she had dove out the way, shot the robot faster, this wouldn't have happened. She glanced up at the Martian, who's body was racked with sobs, as her uncle and the team tried to comfort her. A wave of guilt washed over her as she felt herself frown. PoorMegan.Allofthiscouldhavebeenavoidedifshehadjustbeenabetterhero. She glanced down at her dangling feet. Why did this have to happen? Why didn't anyone remember it was a simple training exercise? It'sbecausetheyCAREArtemis.She quickly shook her head. The voice in the back of her mind was telling her that she had a family. No.It'snotbecausetheycare,itsonlybecausethey'restuckwithme.
"ARTEMIS!" She whipped her head around to face what Miss Martian had warned her about. Just as she had whipped another bow out of her quiver, a bright light engulfed her. She felt a tingly, burning sensation and then… nothing. Soon after she woke up to a bright light and Martian Man-hunter explaining to Batman what went wrong.
Artemis looked up at her teammates surrounding Megan. Batman and Martian Manhunter had left to return to the Watchtower. They still needed to explain to the members' mentors what had happened during the mission. Suddenly, she felt something warm and wet roll down her left cheek. She gently touched her face and realized she was crying. Embarrassed for showing weakness, Artemis stood from the steel tablet she had "died" on. Staying still for a moment, her hands clenched themselves in fists. M'gann's sobs echoing in her mind. She turned around and grabbed the table, looking for something tangible, something real.
Artemis soon felt her own body shaking. She felt the salty tears running down her face as she held the metal be with a death grip, her knuckles turning white. Finally she collapsed to her knees, slowly moving her calloused hands from the steel bed to hold her hair with her arms in front of her face. She openly sobbed now. Not bothering to see if anyone was paying attention to her.
The team stared at her, unsure of what to say. Robin stood from Megan's side, and strode over to Artemis. Kneeling next to her, he put his hand small hand on her shoulder. She immediately threw her arms around his neck and sobbed into his thin chest. Next to walk over was Superboy. He quickly peeled her off of Robin, who was on the floor because of the force of her hug. Conner pulled her into his lap as Kaldur and Megan timidly walked over. Aqualad put his hand on Artemis' knee while M'gann took her head into her lap and began playing with her hair. Wally was more hesitant. He slowly started towards her, taking step by step. When he finally reached the rest of his team, he dropped to his knees, taking the archer's hand and laying his head on her stomach.
"I'm so sorry. It was all my fault. I'm so sorry. I'm so… so-ho sorr…" Her voice trailed off as she broke down again. It was in that moment that he realized two things: One, he was also crying. And two, he was madly in love with a snarky, sarcastic, independent, bitchy, gorgeous, cunning, and graceful woman. And no, that woman was not Megan or Zatanna. Or even the girl he took to the movies last week. It was the one he laying on, with his teammates surrounding him. It was Artemis. He brushed fallen hair out of her face and leaned in to kiss her cheek.
Artemis suddenly snapped out of her bawling trance and finally noticed her teammates around her. Conner was holding her waist and underneath her knees, with her head in Megan's lap. Kal was trying to soothe her with calming words and rubbed her shins. Robin had one of her hands in his lap and used his other hand to grip her forearm tightly. Then she saw Wally. Kid had his head against her stomach and her free hand in his. He was also crying, which the archer didn't understand why. She took her hands away from her friends and sat up, while wiping away stray tears. Looking at her teammates, no, her family, she gave a sad smile. "Thank you," she whispered before crying again.
"Anything for you Artemis," Robin grinned. "Of course" "Yeah" "We love you Artemis! That's what families do for each other." Aqualad, Superboy and Miss Martian smiled at her. Wally stood and took her in his arms. "I thought I'd lost you Artemis," he mumbled into her hair, "You can't do that again. I love you too much to let you slip through my fingers. I won't let you die again. Ever." She hugged him back. "It's okay Wally. I- I love you too." The blonde felt him chuckle against her body. "I was hoping you would say that." The rest of the team smiled and joined their hug. Conner picked up everyone and pulled them to the ground. They sat in comfortable silence. It'sbecausetheyCAREArtemis. She smiled. Iguesstheydo,huh?
Hall of Justice- 08:24 am
Black Canary strode into the room where the kids had their little exercise fiasco the day before. She was peeved off, even though she knows that she shouldn't be. They did die yesterday, even if it wasn't real. She thought they were all in bed, sound asleep. Young Justice deserved it, after all. However when she wandered into the training exercise room, she did not expect to see the teen members in a heap on the floor surrounding Artemis. Yes, they were all there, all on top of Artemis. All of them also had tear tracks on their faces, excluding Conner and Kal of course. She smiled, fetching Green Lantern and he demonstrated his skills with his ring. He scanned them all up and placed them one by one in their beds. All except Kid Flash and Artemis, who were tangled up in each other's arms, Canary shook her head. "About time kiddos." Green Lantern placed them both in the speedster's bed, with all intentions of innocence. Shaking her head once more, she stood in the doorway. "Maybe the exercise was productive, huh Lantern?" He nodded. "But GA's gonna have a cow over this one." She laughed. "I think it'll work out."